Aquaculture, Pond, and Aquatic Environment Diagnostics and Management

Issue: Animal Production


The Cooperative Extension Service is usually the first point of contact for pond and lake owners and local governments seeking technical assistance for water management. Over 250,000 ponds are managed by private owners and municipal governments in Georgia. Fish kills, aquatic vegetation control, pollution abatement, and fish population management are the major issues brought to the Extension Service by Georgia citizens, municipal governments, and the extension agents who assist those producers. Specialized information on aquatic animals and plants, and the water they live in is needed to make rapid responses to their clients. The Georgia climate related to drought and prolonged periods of high temperature effects fish ponds for aquaculture, sport fish, and livestock watering in negative ways.  Extension programs target economics of fish management, algae toxins, aquatic weed management, and water quality improvement.  Support is also needed for private pond consultants and aquatic herbicide applicators, including training and referrals.


Problems or cases are received by electronic media including the Distance Diagnostic system, samples for analysis, and site visits primarily from county Extension agents, but also directly from citizens. At Tifton, diagnostic case work supports our county Extension delivery system and utilizes analytical reports from the UGA Agricultural and Environmental Services Laboratory. Workshops are held at the request of county Extension agents and as state programing to educate County Extension Agents, pond consultants, herbicide applicators, and private pond owners about fish diseases, sportfish pond management, and aquatic weed control. Publications are updated or developed to be distributed through the Extension system and a web site is maintained to direct clients to information and a pond consultant list.


  • Digital Slide Show (PowerPoint) Presentation
  • Fact Sheets / Departmental Publications
  • Individual Assistance / Consultations
  • Speakers and Presenters for County Based Training Opportunities
  • The Distance Diagnostic System is available for county agent use to request information about individual cases.
  • Water tests are available through the Agricultural and Environmental Services Laboratory that can be interpreted, if needed, by the specialist.
  • Workshop at Tifton Aquaculture Unit for county agents


Gary J. Burtle