RAUK - Archived Forum - looks like living rust

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looks like living rust:

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ben rigsby
Senior Member
Joined: 27 Apr 2010
No. of posts: 337

View other posts by ben rigsby
Posted: 02 Mar 2011
hi folks,

on submerged, exposed patches of this rubber pond liner, ive noticed ochre-coloured patches of what looks a bit like some form of aquatic lichen.
not that id know!

can anyone tell me what causes this discolouration please?
is it simply some form of oxidisation? ive only noticed it near the bank in the shallows.
if it IS a life-form, a few ecology details would be interesting to learn.
and finally, is it any kind of threat to the liner or its inhabitants?

sorry the pics are poor!

thanks mucho in adv,


theres a patch of it on left of this pic and also beside the left forelimb of the frog in the centre of the pic;

another patch;

there are much bigger patches of the stuff but i couldnt get a passable pic of them im afraid.

pond is prob a decade or so old.ben rigsby40604.8153009259
Forum Coordinator
Joined: 17 Feb 2003
No. of posts: 448

View other posts by Caleb
Posted: 03 Mar 2011
I think it's iron oxide deposits, probably a waste product of bacteria feeding on iron dissolved in the water. It's probably only present near the surface as there wouldn't be as much oxygen available lower down- iron sulphide would be deposited here instead.

If it is iron, it's unlikely to be any kind of threat- I've certainly seen common frogs and palmate newts breed in some ponds with very large iron deposits.

ben rigsby
Senior Member
Joined: 27 Apr 2010
No. of posts: 337

View other posts by ben rigsby
Posted: 03 Mar 2011
thanks. that makes a lot of sense now. iron oxide prescence explaining the colouration etc.

the "patterning" of the bacterial deposits seem curious.
its not just anywhere is it?
as shown in the pix, they seem to mainly follow waterscape features and boundaries or prominent high contours such as kinks in the liner.
presumably where conds are most favourable somehow?

in doing so, they bring me something resembling bacterial art reminiscent of mapping!


- looks like living rust

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