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How I build Farm Pond- Modern Farmer

“My name is Pandurang Enami from Paithan taluk, 30 Kilometers from Aurangabad. Our area is very dry but rainfall is sufficient to grow crops like Cotton and Maize and citrus orchard. I had faced a severe shortage of water during the year 2000 to 2003. The area dries up in summer. Thus I planned to construct a farm pond to catch rainwater so that the groundwater could be recharged from the bore well. During that period, I had attended a training program in ICRISAT, Hyderabad where I learnt that water can be stored by farm ponds in an effective way and can be used to irrigate the fields during offseason.”

“Taking their example, I started the work of farm pond construction. For any farm pond to be constructed, it is very important that pond must be located in an area where water can be easily transported and diverted to the crops. The excavation and transportation of earth can be accomplished with a combination of manual labour or with machines like excavators and tractors. “ Says Pandurang.

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Digging of the soil can be done efficiently with the help of tractor-operated leveller. The digging of soil can be started from one end of the pond. Remove the soil up to the required depth. When the soil from the bottom of the service reservoir is completely removed, It is always advisable to shape reservoir with cutting rather than filling of soil. This will facilitate better pond boundary.

The market rate for excavating a 100x100x12 cubic foot pond is said to be in between Rs. 80,000 to Rs. 90,000 but farmers under this some schemes will also get a subsidy. My farm pond dimension is 250 ft X 250 ft X 28 ft. I got a 100% subsidy from Maharashtra Government and currently, this subsidy is around 50% on the cost of Polyethene sheet.

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This water from farm pond is sufficient to enough to irrigate 20 acres of land with drip irrigation. Currently, I am cultivating Sugarcane, Sapota and Mausambi with this water. Once built, they need minimum maintenance and repair. To prevent the seepage and other losses from the water body, ponds should be lined with high-density polyethene material. I have used HDP material from DP Plastics Ratlam during that time which lasted for more than 10 years.

With an appropriate lining of ponds, the seepage loss could be minimized. Plastic can be used very effectively inlining the ponds. But, lining the ponds with plastics sufficient care is required in selecting the proper material and laying of plastics material and saving it from the damage. Don’t rough-handle or drag polythene rolls, as the film may get damaged in the process. Don’t let workers walk on the polythene while the lining operation is in progress to avoid puncturing of the film. In case this is unavoidable, they should walk barefoot. Once the pond is established, periodical inspection is required for the better life of the pond. Thus timely maintenance holds the key to success for a longer time. It includes inspection, removing problems and repairing damages. An immediate repair is desirable to check the deterioration and save form further damages.

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Some important points to have in mind for better management of farm pond are as follows:

1.Pond area must be protected from the intrusion of animals by proper fencing.

2.Growing fish in farm ponds will help to increase income. I have also grown freshwater fish like Rohu, Katla that fetched me Rs 120 a kilo. After the eight-month growth period, I harvested them, which brings me around Rs 80, 000.

The farm pond is an effective way to mitigate drought and also helps in increasing farm income. Farmers can think in the direction of conserving water and increase productivity.

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