If you decide to take your pump out for the winter, then you will need something in its place to add oxygen to the water and keep an opening in the ice. Adding a de-icer and aerator will help ensure that you have a hassle-free winter and an easy set up for spring. Aeration is also very important during winter as it helps to keep a small hole open in the surface of the pond to aid in degassing.
The Pond De-Icer helps ensure that there is sufficient oxygen levels and proper gas exchange in the pond. This helps prevent fish loss during extreme winter weather conditions. The De-Icer is also energy efficient (requiring only 300-watts of electricity!). It comes with a built-in LED light at the top of the De-Icer to allow you to look out the window of your warm home and see that the De-Icer is still operating.
If you don’t like the De-Icer option, you can also use a soilds handling pump that you place directly into the water. The solids handling pump will keep a hole in the ice by producing water movement. This will prevent ice from forming where the pump sits. If the hole does freeze over in very severe conditions, do not attempt to crack the ice; the concussion could possibly kill the fish. Instead, fill a metal pan with hot water and place it on the ice until it melts through.
Another option we recommend along with a de-icer or bubbler is an aerator. Pond aerators oxygenate your pond, helping all biological processes and create a more stable environment. The result of taking these extra precautions is having healthier fish and plants, as well as a more stable ecosystem. Also keep in mind that fish 12" and up in size require more oxygen. Just as with the solids handling pump, you NEVER want to place the air stone directly on the bottom of the pond. Doing so will cause super cooling of the water and will create unfavorable conditions for your fish.
Your finned friends can never get too much oxygen during the cold conditions presented by a New England winter- so come on in to Action and have us help you get ready for the winter!