June 20, 2017

Alternative Dredging Techniques for Muck Removal

Is your body of water overcome with muck or sediment?

Has your search for muck removal led you to believe that dredging your lake or pond is the best solution?

The truth is conventional dredging techniques are very messy. The typically damaging process involves first draining the pond and removing all wildlife before the heavy equipment is brought in to scrape the bottom of the pond or lake. Once completed, dump trucks are brought in to haul away the collected sloppy sludge material. During this process, not only the body of water's wildlife is destroyed but also the entire landscape of the water body. Essentially dredging a pond or lake is like eliminating your entire water body's wildlife to start fresh.

As a result of conventional dredging techniques, the water body's shoreline will need to be completely restored; trees, grass and the landscape will have to be replaced or reseeded.  This whole messy process is without a 100% guarantee that the muck will be gone forever. Surely, there’s a better way to treat muck.

The Cost of Traditional Pond or Lake Dredging

The cost of conventionally dredging a pond or a lake is dependent on many different variables. However, this costly muck reduction method can run anywhere from $20,000 to $75,000 per acre. When determining the cost of traditional dredging, there are four main questions to answer:

  1. How much sediment is there to dredge?
  2. What is the size of the water body?
  3. What is the content and condition of the material that needs to be dredged?
  4. Where can you put the dredged material once it's removed from the lake?Dredging Techniques- The Cost of Dredging a Lake- Clean-Flo

To determine the quantity of muck, a bathymetric and vegetation survey must be performed through the entire body of water to provide water depth information. At the same time, a sediment survey can be conducted to gather information about the softness or thickness of the sediment. At Clean-Flo, our alternative dredging techniques also offer bottom composition mapping as a platform to understand the muck removal project at hand and ultimately create the most cost-effective solutions to your problem. Also, we use bottom composition surveys as a way to monitor and track progress or changes in the muck reduction process.

For traditional dredging techniques, after the sediment amount is accessed, the next step is to find an area to put the muck on land once it's removed. However, most people underestimate the amount of land needed to contain the removed muck. Typically for every two acres of lake or pond dredged, there's an average of three feet of sediment, which requires an acre of land with an elevation of about 6 feet. Keep in mind; this area should be as close to the water body as possible as it affects the dredging cost. At Clean-Flo, our natural dredging alternative methods don't consist of removing the muck from the water body via equipment. Therefore, there’s no need for land to store the muck.

Environmental Impact of Dredging

Since dredging requires the removal of unwanted sediment at the expense of the water body’s wildlife, it possesses a huge threat to the water body's health, shoreline, and landscape. The primary focus of traditional dredging is to remove the submerged sediment deposits; as a result, the environmental effects of dredging also revolve around this focal point.
The environmental effects of dredging including:

  • Removing large parts of water bodies and dumping it elsewhere can have a significant impact on sensitive ecosystems. Soil deposits in any given body of water have a certain pre-disposed composition which dredging can alter.
  • As a result of soil composition alterations, the habitat of the existing creatures and organisms that depend on the original composition are put at risk and will eventually die out due to the changes.
  • The turbidness of the soil, or cloudiness, under the water, is altered because of the changes in the soil composition. These alterations can cause further issues after the dredging process is complete due to the creation of new, harmful organisms, transferring unwanted organisms to other parts of the body of water leading to a larger spread of contamination and the release of unwanted nutrients.
  • In addition to the composition changes within the water body, as previously mentioned, the process of dredging takes a toll on the landscape and shoreline of the water. In order to bring in the equipment needed for dredging, it may be required to remove trees and other vegetation surrounding the water body.

Natural and Inexpensive Dredging Alternative for Sediment Removal

While conventional dredging techniques deepen a lake or pond, which makes it more difficult for submerged vegetation to grow, there is no guarantee that dredging can help improve water quality. In fact, according to the USEPA dredging does nothing to control algae, reduce odor, prevent fish kill, improve fish health and maintain a clean lake or pond bottom. On the contrary, it mixes phosphorus, nitrogen and other pollutants found in muck into the water.

If you are looking for a solution to any of these specific problems, the combination of CLEAN-FLO Continuous Laminar Flow Inversion/ Oxygenation System and our natural C-FLO+ living organisms and Clean & Clear natural vegetable enzymes are an effective, natural and inexpensive alternative to traditional dredging techniques for reducing muck and improving water quality. Our Laminar Flow aeration and Bioaugmentation has proven success in reducing organic sediment and firming the bottom of the water body.

Our Natural Muck Reduction Products

Muck Reduction Product- CFLO+- Clean-Flo


C-FLO+ are specially formulated slow release disks consisting of beneficial microbes with natural plant enzymes which feed on non-living organic sediment (muck) at the bottom of all water bodies.



Muck Reduction Product- Clean & Clear- Clean-FloCLEAN & CLEAR™ CONCENTRATED ENZYMES is a special blend of non-toxic enzymes from nature that acts as a catalyst to biodegrade non-living organic matter and reduces available nutrients in the water, thus improving water quality.





Muck Reduction Product- CLO-P- Clean-FloC-FLO P – microbial pellet formulation to consume bottom non-living organic sediment, while insects feed on the micro-organisms and fish feed on the insects. Muck disappears while fish thrive on natural food.





Adding one of our aeration systems to the body of water is an absolute must to maximize the benefits of these products without the need of costly, damaging dredging techniques. In addition to C-FLO+, C-FLO P and Clean & Clear Concentrated Enzymes, we offer other natural muck reduction products.

Contact us today for more information about our alternative organic muck reduction techniques.

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