Prevent Algae from Growing in Your Birdbath: copper in a birdbath to prevent algae

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Prevent Algae from Growing in Your Birdbath

By flaflwrgrl
December 10, 2011

To keep algae growth from your bird bath drop some pre-1982 copper pennies in. I have what I would call a normal size bird bath & I use 7 pennies. The reason for the pennies being pre-1982 is that before that year, the pennies contained copper, a natural algicide. You could also use a small length of copper pipe or tubing, or any other copper coin. I have found this to work extremely well with the exception of those times when the temperatures stay above 90 for extended periods. Copper is not safe for fish so this would not be a good thing to use in a fish aquarium or a pond that has fish in it.

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pilot724
May 28, 2014 8:31 AM CST
Would a short length of copper pipe work in a garden pond?
Name: Trish
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Trish
May 28, 2014 10:09 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Hi Pilot!

We love it when new members ask questions Thumbs up

Copper is not safe for fish, if you have them in your pond. If your pond is only plants, then this tip is great for you.
As for size, it really just depends on the amount of water, so giving you a definite answer is tough. A few pennies work in a birdbath, so try to scale up from there Thumbs up

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dave
May 28, 2014 3:32 PM CST

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I'll add that copper isn't going to be very effective for a large body of water. For a little birdbath it really does work great but I wouldn't try it in a pond setting. Keeping the sun off your water is the best algae preventative for ponds. So plant plants that shade the water.
Name: Toni
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Skiekitty
Mar 26, 2015 8:51 AM CST
Trish said:Hi Pilot!

We love it when new members ask questions Thumbs up

Copper is not safe for fish, if you have them in your pond. If your pond is only plants, then this tip is great for you.
As for size, it really just depends on the amount of water, so giving you a definite answer is tough. A few pennies work in a birdbath, so try to scale up from there Thumbs up

Make yourself at home- there's lots to learn on ATP Welcome!


Actually, copper IS safe for fish. Not for inverts, though. Many aquatic medications contain copper. I've kept pennies in my aquariums to combat snails for years. Always pre-1982.

http://www.marinedepot.com/Kent_Marine_Discus_Essential_16_o...
http://www.marinedepot.com/Seachem_Laboratories_Cupramine_Co...
http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcati...
http://www.sancoind.com/news/copper-sulfate-safety
http://www.chilternkoi.baxx.net/Copper%20and%20koi.htm
http://nippyfish.net/2009/05/19/is-coppersafe-safe-treating-...



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[Last edited by Skiekitty - Mar 26, 2015 8:54 AM (+)]
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flaflwrgrl
Mar 26, 2015 12:38 PM CST
Thanks for that Toni! Thumbs up
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