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Our duck ponds have turned green - what's going on?

DUCK AND COVER: Mick and Jenni Lund enjoy a break at the Lake Alford duck ponds, which some residents say are in need of cleaning up following a vegetation outbreak.
DUCK AND COVER: Mick and Jenni Lund enjoy a break at the Lake Alford duck ponds, which some residents say are in need of cleaning up following a vegetation outbreak. Scott Kovacevic

IMAGINE a duck pond and you will probably picture fluffy, feathery fowls splashing around in blue water.

However if you have taken a trip to the Lake Alford ponds recently you may have noticed that aquatic blue has become a rapidly spreading green instead.

And it is a change which has not gone unnoticed by Gympie Regional Council, which will give the ponds a clean-out early next week - a move which will no doubt be welcomed by residents who have voiced concern about the popular park's condition on social media.

A GRC spokeswoman said while council had a plan to manage the vegetation outbreaks, preventing them presented a whole other challenge.

"Shallow water bodies with high nutrients (like Lake Alford) can very quickly provide an ideal environment for the rapid build-up of aquatic vegetation under warmer conditions,” she said.

The warm weather had made conditions "ideal” for some species of aquatic plants, which could build up in as little as two weeks.

"These build-ups can occur rapidly over a couple of weeks in hot weather and after periods of low rainfall and are a natural occurrence in shallow, high nutrient water bodies,” the spokeswoman said.

It is not uncommon at Lake Alford. Harvesting was necessary last March to contain a similar outbreak.

Along with harvesting, the council's program also involves deepening the lakes to help keep them clean.

"This was undertaken on the eastern lake (near Brisbane Rd in spring last year) and (we will be) undertaking this work on the western end of the lake,” the spokeswoman said.

Topics:  gympie council gympie regional council lake alford monkland pond

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