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wcjohnson

Public pond problems - who to contact?

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As the topic states, I'm looking for some input on how to go about and whom to contact to get some attention brought to a public city pond behind my place. Talking with an old timer last week that's been fishing the pond for 20+ years, he mentioned the silt buildup over the years has reduced the depth of the pond significantly along with the quality of fish. Last year I contacted the number listed on the city's park district website, and it was evident they were going to disregard my call from the get go. The 'North' pond has been said by a number of folks to have been fished out, and this 'South' pond still has quality fish, but clearly has some vegetation management and silt buildup issues.

 

This past week has me concerned as we had a significant amount of rain fall and for whatever reason, while most other places are flooded, this ponds water level is down about a foot and a half and the back cove is currently a mud flat. There's two creeks flowing into the pond along with a large drain - not sure if that could potentially cause excessive water run off resulting in lower water levels?

 

I'm torn because while it does produce some great fish, I'd hate to watch it dwindle away and see a natural kill off. At the same time, I'm afraid drawing attention to it could result in it being drained and stocked from scratch. Whose my best bet to follow up with, and how should I go about it; the park district, the city, DNR?

 

 

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Tough question... 

 

I personally believe you should contact the DNR and explain your situation with the pond, hopefully, they don't drain it or start it from scratch.

 

Best of Luck,

Martin Sierra

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I'm assuming you were ignored by the local park authority.

Call the city councilperson who's district the pond is in. If they blow you off, gather as many people who fish there as you can and attend an open council meeting. They probably will ignore you until they see that it affects a number of possible voters. If it requires public funds to fix, their hands may be tied.

Also, the DNR suggestion is a good one. They are more likely to care though they might have to ask permission to do something about the issue if it's in city limits. Around here, the DNR taking action usually means they designate only 2 or 3 days a week people can fish there and they set the size and number limits based on what they think is best overall for the fishery. Sometimes, that means they couldn't care less if there's a trophy bass in the pond.

 

Perhaps @MartinTheFisherman has a good point. You could speak with a biologist at the DNR about general issues regarding ponds and not even have to ask for their intervention.

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Start writing to your elected officials.

 

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Check and see who manages the pond and contact them. Around here the city manages the parks but the conservation dept manages the lakes in the parks. 

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God bless you. Nobody cares, unless there’s major losses to the area economy.

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2 hours ago, CrankFate said:

God bless you. Nobody cares, unless there’s major losses to the area economy.

I'm not saying don't try, but this is the unfortunate truth in this case. If you can present a solid case on how the city is losing significant amounts of revenue because of the problems, you might have a chance, but nothing is going to happen fast. 

 

There's a really good lake a hour south of me with a hole in the dam that constantly leaks water. It's a shallow lake already and gets extremely shallow during dry times but has some great fish in it. I spoke with the biologist about it and he said the state is more likely to sell the lake and land to a private individual than it is to spend the money to fix the hole because it's a state lake that generates no revenue. 

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We have a creek in my city that is broken up into roughly 1/4 mile sections with small dams that allow water to flow over when it floods. The largest, deepest section held a good bass population but had gotten silted in over the years.

 

Because this creek is connected to a river, which is connected to several area lakes and is all part of the city rain runoff and a huge flood control system, the city decided it was time to fix the silted section (as they do every 30 years or so.) They pumped all water out of that section down stream and used heavy equipment to dig all the slop out.

 

They made the bids public for the job and it was 6 figures. My point is, the cost for a job like this is quite high and even if they do decide to fix your pond, it will likely require completely draining the pond and killing everything in it.

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15 hours ago, Jrob78 said:

They made the bids public for the job and it was 6 figures. My point is, the cost for a job like this is quite high and even if they do decide to fix your pond, it will likely require completely draining the pond and killing everything in it.

This is why I think it's unlikely anything can/will be done.

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On 4/8/2019 at 11:14 AM, ike8120 said:

Start writing to your elected officials.

 

Yeah, do like Andy Duphrein on Shawshank.  Write a letter every week until they get sick of you and finally do something about it.

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All the feedback is very much appreciated! For now, I think contacting the DNR is going to be my best starting point. I have no knowledge of their effectiveness, but I see there are water treatment products for ponds to help with muck, vegetation, etc. Seems like a more cost effective, but less impact solution - Heck, I'd chip in if they'd agree to do it!

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