For the most part, ponds make beautiful, constructive additions to a property. However, there are times when homeowners may find that their best laid plans run afoul thanks to Mother Nature. Thats because ponds attract more than just humans and livestock looking to cool off. They also attract wildlife that prefers nothing more than chewing onpond liners. Heres a look at five such critters and what you can do to quell their appetites:
1.) Gophers" One of the gnawers-in-chiefs to look out for are gophers. They will often burrow underneath of ponds and chew through pond liners in a New York minute. In addition, they can cause serious pond erosion, which is a problem all unto itself.To keep them at bay, consider using gopher wire. Yes, they are such voracious pests that companies actually produce first-rate, super strong wire to stop the creatures teeth in mid bite. You have to install it properly though. Otherwise, these crafty creatures will just find a way to work around it.
2.) Muskrats" Right behind gophers in their pond liner destruction capabilities are muskrats. These creatures feed on pond vegetation, shellfish, amphibians and small reptiles that are attracted to the water. So they tend to put down roots within 150-feet of a homeowners pond. They are particularly drawn to areas that offer some form of cover, steep earthen embankments and immediate access to deep water.That said, to control them consider building 3:1 side slopes complete with riprap and keeping the surrounding vegetation to a minimum. Floating dock barriers, predator urine markings, and live traps may help. You might also want to think about cutting down on, or totally eliminating, their favorite food sources. Favored food sources include cattails, water lilies, ferns, bulrush and pondweed.
3.) Chipmunks" Dont let their cute appearance fool you. Despite their small, precious appearances, chipmunks can really destroy pond liners. What typically draws them to the waters edge is the promise of insects. They love to eat them along with their other dietary staples. The pond liner damage comes about from their incessant chewing and burrowing.To thwart their attempts at making your pond their beloved dining spot, think about setting live traps and using hardware cloth to seal tempting, embankment openings. Keeping the sides of your pond free of wood and brush piles may help as well.
4.) Rats" On the not so cuddly side of pest line are water and terrestrial dwelling rats. While hunting for small fish and natural grains, theyll happily chomp onto pond liners too. Thwarting their efforts typically calls for chicken wire, roofing felt, live traps and heavy-gauge hardware cloth. However, in extreme situations you may need to bring out the big guns like galvanized sheet metal and concrete to block their preferred den sites.
5.) Waterfowl" Okay, so we all know that waterfowl dont chew. But they will puncture holes in pond liners and attract other undesirables (e.g. gators). So weve tossed them onto our list too. Ways to keep waterfowl from turning your pond liner into Swiss cheese include the use of decoys, netting and landscaping that makes the ponds embankment less appealing to feather-clad snackers.
To learn more about pond liners and how to protect them from the local wildlife, pleasecontact us. We offer customers access to first-rate pond liners that are resistant to punctures, tears and everyday wildlife damage.