Many different aquatic plants can be found in, on, and around fish culture ponds. These plants range from microscopic organisms known as plankton algae which drift suspended in the water, to larger plants rooted in the pond bottom. Certain types of aquatic plants are essential for fish production. However, aquatic plants that interfere with commercial fish production are considered to be weeds.
Intensive fish production often involves adding large amounts of commercial feeds and inorganic fertilisers to ponds. Nutrients introduced into the water through feeds and fertilisers often create an ideal habitat for aquatic weed growth. Submersed aquatic weeds are particularly undesirable because fish harvesting seines will ride up over the weeds and allow fish to escape. Ponds with dense weed infestations can be impossible to harvest since the weight of the weeds accumulating in the seine can become too great to be pulled. Additionally, separating fish from weeds is a slow process and can severely stress the fish.
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Article made possible through the contribution of Oklahoma State University.