FOUNTAINS, AERATION SYSTEMS KEY TO PRESERVING, IMPROVING WATERWAYS

By: Samantha Colome, Lake & Wetland Management

Seasons in Florida are more subtle than in more northernly latitudes but the annual cycle is clearly defined by a wet, stormy summer period and a markedly drier winter season.  This strong seasonal variance of drought and deluge has posed serious challenges to land and water managers who have had to deal with an overabundance of water during the summer months and shortcomings over the winter.  An aerial view of most modern Florida communities shows a human-engineered landscape drained and crisscrossed by canals and dotted with swales and stormwater retention basins disguised as aesthetically pleasing lakes.

These utilitarian structures help to manage the overflow of precipitation dumped upon the Sunshine State during the summer monsoon season and to hold and store water for use during the dry, lean winter drought.  Despite the good intentions with which these structures were originally built, they are unnatural and have disrupted the natural seasonal flow of water in the peninsula from the interior south through the Everglades and out to our coastal estuaries.  As a result, many stormwater retention basins that hold water for extended periods of time tend to become prone to a potent cocktail of issues including stagnation, loading with high levels of runoff nutrients and pollution, thermal stratification, explosive algal blooms, massive midge and mosquito emergences and oxygen depletion resulting in fish kills.

One strategy to manage such issues is the installation of aerators in stormwater basins to oxygenate and circulate water.  Aa an aerator moves water around a basin, it prevents the surface water from overheating and forming thermally-stratified layers.  Such movement combats algae growth and causes nutrients and pollution to precipitate to the bottom, keeping the water column clearer and fresher for fish and other wildlife, including natural predators of midge and mosquito larvae that might otherwise not be able to cope with an un-aerated water body.  Aerator installation coupled with native littoral wetland plant installation, natural mosquito larvicide application and intelligent lake management can correct a suite of serious issues and make a utilitarian body of water an attractive addition to a community that improves aesthetics and increases property values.

Lake & Wetland Management is your one-stop shop for all your lake management and aeration needs.  An industry leader for over 25 years, Lake & Wetland Management expertly installs and maintains a full line of handsome, powerful, top-rated aerators and fountains to enhance your lakes and waterside quality of life.  Please contact your local Lake & Wetland Management office today for a free survey and custom proposal for a system tailor-made to fit your lifestyle and the individual needs of your waterway.