Posted 04-22-2004 at 11:54:42
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That rapid growth of algae is commonly called an "algael bloom" and is usually caused by excessive phosphorous in the water.
I think applying hay would only add additional nitrogen source and enhance the problem. Hay can be scattered on a "muddy" pond to clear it up. The floating clay particles are attracted to the vegetation and when the hay gets soaked, it sinks and takes the clay with it, thus clarifying the pond.
But algae? You can stock the pond with something that eats it (various types of fish as mentioned or waterfowl - ducks, geese, etc. as mentioned).
My neighbor applies "bluestone" to his pond which colors the water, thus reducing the light penetration and inhibiting the algal growth.
The only true cure I have heard of is to literally dip it out. This is the method used by a local "pay lake" because they don't want to use any additives. Then you could use the blue stone to slow its return.
It may also be helpful to evaluate your activities around the pond to see if there is anything you do that adds extra nutrients to the water, and if there is anything you can do to remove nutrients before it reaches the pond (a long grass strip, or even a wetland in the upstream tip where the water enters).
I hope you get this under control and can enjoy your pond this summer. Best of luck.