Pond stocking

• Do-It-Yourself •

Building and Stocking a Trout Pond

TT trout splash

When planning to build or stock a trout pond for the first time, there are numerous points to consider, including:

  • water quality,
  • water volume,
  • an ideal pond site,
  • possible aeration requirements,
  • stocking density, and
  • time of year to stock.

Pond site requirements:

When selecting a pond site, bear in mind that trout are cold-water fish. A well-shaded pond site will help in reducing pond warming and algae growth.

Water source considerations:

Water quality parameters include water temperature, oxygen levels, and toxicity. An optimum water temperature for growing trout is 15°C at 100% oxygen saturation. Anything above this and trout will start to stress. Once you establish the water source, your pond site selection will hopefully have a clay component to reduce water leakage. If there is an inadequate water flow, you can line your pond to keep up the water level.

Trout pond aeration:

If your pond is of adequate size, there may be enough surface area to provide sufficient passive oxygen transfer to support your trout. If you cannot supplement your oxygen needs with an extra flow of oxygen-rich water through your pond, mechanical aeration can be an option.

Mechanical aeration comes in several forms; packed tower aerators, diffused bubble aerators, and spray aerators. Any aerator will help to oxygenate the water, but all require a power source; therefore, in the absence of electricity to the pond, try a solar-powered aerator or a wind-powered aerator. Individual situations will dictate the correct choice of an aerator.