Newbie pond questions
I have been lurking and learning for a while, but haven't found answers to my particular newbie questions.
I have a 50 gal stock tank pond, about a month and a half old. Five Mosquito fish, 2 feeder gold fish, 2 african dwarf frogs which I have not seen since putting them in. The mosquito fish are growing. I was feeding a little bit of goldfish flakes until one of the dogs ate them. sigh... You'd think I never feed them. Now a bit of bloodworms every couple days, placed where I figure the frogs are hiding.
The water sensitive plant is growing like crazy. The water lettuce was growing well, but now looks pale. The hornwort started losing its needles and turned a sort of translucent pale rust color. A Brand X site mentioned that hornwort that isn't thriving isn't getting enough sun. I took a piece out and put in a bucket where it could get sun, gave it a pinch of fish emulsion for nitrogen, and now it looks worse.
The hornwort in the pond has a couple ends that are bushy, bushiness I don't remember seeing before, but the color is still poor. Is the shed and color change a normal thing for adjusting to a new pond?
The algae is horrible. One site said not enough oxygen, so I put in a homemade filter similar to a corner filter for a tank. Today I rinsed the batting to get the worst of the dark dirt out, but wanted to leave in any good colonizing bacteria, etc. Bad idea to rinse? I figured it wouldn't filter if it was completely gummed up. The birds poop in the pond now and again and a filter seems like a good idea.
Every few days I siphon a bit of the grunge off the bottom, thinking about the bird poop, and the dirt which blows in from the monsoon winds.
How long does the "cycling" take? You frequently mention patience. How much patience?