Keeping Your Pond Dam and Spillway Clear

– Hi there everybody. One of the most commonly
asked questions we get about your pond is, “What should I do about
this tree that’s on my dam?” Well in general, especially
if you’re a new pond owner, try to limit any vegetation,
brush, bushes, trees, from beginning to grow in your dam. But if you have an older dam or you’ve inherited an old pond then you might need to
know how you should manage trees that are already existing there. And a general recommendation is any tree larger than eight
inches at diameter breast height you should keep healthy and continue to live, any
tree smaller than that, you should go ahead and cut down. So where I’ll demonstrate here how you should measure your tree. Simply just take a tape measure, pull it out across, and as you can see, that tree is about seven
and a half inches diameter. So it should be removed from your dam. As you can see, this is an
example of what the backside of your dam should look like. Although it is a little steep, it can be easily mowed and maintained. As you see, there are
no large trees or bushes impeding the structural
integrity of the dam. Now that we’ve gave you some problems that may be associated with
the backside of your dam. I wanna discuss a few with the front-side or the wet-side of your dam. Just the same as before, you
also do not want any large trees or large bushes on
the front-side of your dam. However, you see these small bushes here, they aren’t really harming the
structure of the dam itself, other than just impeding
your fishing from shore. Another problem, especially
with the front-side of dams is commonly beavers or muskrats
that may burrow or dig into your dam and they can harm the
structure itself of the dam. And also, beavers can try to
clog up your spillway with logs and basically build a dam around it. Which could potentially cause
flooding and other problems associated with overflowing
water from your pond. As previously mentioned, if
your spillway pipe does become clogged by beavers or other sources, this excess water will exit through your emergency spillway system. This is essentially the
low-point in your dam and it’s very important
to keep this area clear of any structures or excess debris. If a flood event or just
a regular high-water event does occur, other logs exiting the pond can get collected on this debris and cause erosion to occur
on the backside of your dam. And maybe even cause it to fail.

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