I am still working my tail off getting the aquatic ecosystem at Mezzacello stabilized. Between the relentless algae, the fish wastes, the duck wastes, the duck feathers, the constant sunlight, and the addition of the new biofilter pump system, I have been on the disaster bus. I’ve faced massive fish die offs, the ducks ate all of the plants, the biofilter outflow valve has been blocked on three separate occasions; once by a large leaf, once by a bioball or two clogging the outflow and overflow, and most recently by the unfortunate body of a dead bird. Each time has resulted in a catastrophe and an almost total emptying of the 1700 gallon pond. It has been a struggle. There have been curse words and there have been tantrums and tears.

I haven’t even addressed the string of failures linked to the plumbing of the biofilter itself. Let’s just say I have built four biofilters at this point, and I have a finely honed sense of what a difficult substance water is to deal with. It is unforgiving in the face of suction, gravity, and impending disaster. There is no worse feeling than the pit of your stomach and the shock of adrenaline one feels when one walks out to the pond and see a gaping hole where the water should be. The ducks love all the muddy water on the ground though. But ducks are naturally carefree – and they love any kind of water. The chickens have started telling myths of “the great floods” in the henyard…

So I have consigned myself to the fact that I have in fact built this pond on the site of an ancient Indian burial ground, and the pond itself is cursed by the aforementioned malevolent spirits and one piss-poor aquatic engineer in residence. I am now referring to it as #Pondergeist. If you live close to Mezzacello and know what you’re doing with a pond and filter system, consider doing a brother a solid and stop by and help me out. Meanwhile I’ll be going on yet ANOTHER run to Menard’s for spare parts and burning some sage to smudge the evil spirits haunting my pond and weighing heavy on my heart and mind.

Disaster Sludge
The sludge was so thick at one point that objects would just rest on the surface. Yes, those are Duplo Blocks. Jim Bruner | Mezzacello
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