The pond at Indian Springs is a classic example of the law of unintended consequences which people should give careful attention to before having a knee-jerk reaction to a problem.
Three years ago, the four-five acre pond at Indian Springs was a clean pond, thanks to the efforts of a pair of beaver that made the pond their home. They had a small lodge near the point were water bubbles up out of the ground and it was common to see them busily maintaining their territory. It was also common to see people from the neighborhood fishing or taking a walk around the pond. Some people had benches near the water and it was on one of those benches that my son-in-law proposed to my daughter.
But, as is their nature, the beavers kept trying to plug up the outlet from the pond and the blockage would have to be removed every month or two so the pond would not overflow across the road; a ten minute job. Someone decided it was too much of a job and the beavers were trapped out; fast-forward three years.
The pond at Indian Springs is now a solid mat of rotting weeds. The water running from the outlet pipe where my dog use to stop to take a drink is now a blackish, stinking stream that she avoids and I hold my nose when we walk past. In short, the pond is dead and a health hazard to those of us living near it. Instead of a healthy pond, kept that way by a pair of beaver, we now have five acres of stinking, weed-choked, mosquito-breeding water that deer and other wildlife avoid.
A 10-minute job once a month is now going to cost the owners of the pond, or the town taxpayers, thousands of dollars to clean up. Instead of trapping out the beaver pups and allowing a pair of beavers to maintain the pond, whoever trapped out the beavers knew best and we in the neighborhood have to live with the mess.
A viable source of clean water that was used by both sides during the Civil War, and before that by homesteaders and the Indians, is in danger of disappearing under a mat of rotten weeds. There is an old Spanish saying, “The cheap always turns out expensive” and people should always take time to consider the law of unintended consequences before they act. By the way, I talked to a forest ranger who said that if you dumped a couple of beaver in the pond as it is, the brackish water would probably kill them. In short, Ringgold taxpayers will probably be asked to come up with a little more money, or the Indian Springs neighborhood will have to live with a pond that has become a health hazard.
Albert A. Baca, Ringgold