Watermeal Control

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Watermeal is extremely minuscule; actually, it is smaller than one millimeter. It is a pale shade of green, freely moving, plant without any roots. In reality, watermeal is the tiniest plant which bears seeds across the planet. Watermeal has a tendency to develop in thick gatherings in still water, unruffled by wave swells and currents. Watermeal generally has duckweed as a companion. Watermeal can be a destructive intruder of ponds and are frequently discovered intermingled with duckweed or Carolina pond ferns. If masses blanket the top of the water, then oxygen can be depleted and fish can die.
Picture of watermeal up close
Watermeal and duckweed have to be handled before they enshroud the complete top layer of the pond.

Thick masses of watermeal can oftentimes blanket the whole surface of a pond and will be a contributing factor in diffused oxygen deficiency and be responsible for the death of fish. These masses will also phase out underwater plants by preventing sunlight to come through. Watermeal is not regarded as a critical source of nourishment but ducks oftentimes eat it and take it to other ponds and lakes. It attaches to feet and feathers, and is passed along in their feces.

Watermeal control can also be achieved physically by using a rake or net. Being that water meal is extremely tiny; it is very hard to get rid of it by utilizing only this method.
Container with watermeal
Watermeal can also be gotten rid of by way of nature. Tilapia will eat watermeal but can only live in water temperature no lower than 55 degrees. If you plan on stocking your pond with tilapia it should not be done prior to the middle of April or the beginning of May. One is strongly urged to stock their pond with fifteen to twenty pounds mature Mozambique tilapia, both male and female, for each affected area. Mozambique tilapias are perfect for warm weedy bodies of water.
Duckweed and watermeal covering a pond

The removal of watermeal can also be accomplished chemically. Choose a translocated herbicide which contains fluridone like “White Cap Herbicide”. It will be soaked up and travel inside the plant to the region of activity. Translocated herbicides usually do not work as quickly as contact herbicides, which destroy only sections of the plant. A herbicide like White Cap will typically become noticeable in 4 to 6 weeks with the effects lasting about 2 years from the initial treatment.

By: Bradley Skierkowski

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