Backyard Pond Fish

There are plenty of homeowners who enjoy having a pond or some sort of water feature in their backyard.  The sound of water is soothing and it can drown out the sounds of passing traffic.  It is relaxing to watch the fish swim lazily by, so water gardens with some fish are ideal.  Putting together a backyard pond and getting some fish doesn’t have to be complicated. You can even brainstorm for some backyard duck pond ideas. Let us show you how easy it is.

Constructing the Pond

Before you go shopping for some fish you need a place for them to live.  Your water garden should have plants covering half to two thirds of the surface.  You can add hyacinths, water lettuce or a different type of floating plants.  You’re going to need to install some sort of filtration system to keep the water clean for your fish.  Don’t put too many fish in the pond, it is still a small space and they need room to live and move around.  Here are some different design techniques.

Types of Pond Fish

The two most common pond fish are goldfish and koi.  Koi come from carp and Japanese breeders used selective breeding techniques to get the koi you see in backyard ponds today.  In the early 20th century koi made their way from the far east to backyard gardens throughout Europe and North America.  You can get koi in a wide variety of colors and these bad boys can grow to be huge.  Koi can reach up to three feet in length and weigh more than 30 pounds.  If you have a proper setup with good filtration and ventilation your koi can last for years.


Goldfish are another popular choice to put in your backyard pond, they are cheaper and easier to maintain than koi.  You can put goldfish into almost any sized pond and you can get them in different colors.  Like koi, there are a couple of different goldfish types you can buy but the most popular are the comet or the fantail.


While backyard pond fish are wonderful they also make a great snack for predators.  Birds, raccoons and don’t forget the neighbor’s cat are all going to want to catch your fish so you might want to think about putting some type of covering over your pond.  The protection will not only keep out the predators  it can be used to help keep your pond warm in the winter months.

Keeping backyard fish will require some work and maintenance, you need to make sure your fish have enough to eat and the water stays clean and healthy but they are well worth the trouble.

Building a Backyard Pond

Having your own pond in your backyard is a great way to attract butterflies and birds to come in, you can make your pond any size you like and your yard can accommodate.  Your pond will be the focal point to your backyard space.  You can choose to have just a water feature or a pond with fish living in it.  You can have a prefab pond that you get at a home improvement store.  Building a backyard pond doesn’t have to be complicate, you can use barrels or containers and lots of accessories to make it unique.

Building a backyard pond


Before you pick up a shovel and start digging up your backyard you need to take the time to consider where you are going to put it.  You want to find a space that lets you see it from your patio or deck, while it still blends into the natural beauty of your garden.  The pond shouldn’t go in an area that is too sunny nor should it be left completely in the shade under the trees.  If you have a pond with koi and it is in the direct sunlight the water can get too warm and harm your fish.  So a little bit of shade is just what you want.

Landscaping and Setting Up

Once you have figured out just where the pond is going to go it’s time to dig the hole.  The size of your pond should be proportional to your yard, not too  big to overwhelm nor too small that it’s barely noticeable.   You can create a free form pond with some rubber roofing material to line the inside or you can buy a pre-formed piece of fiberglass at a home improvement store.

You want your pond to look like it belongs in your backyard and to blend with the surroundings and that will mean some landscaping.  You can also add lights so that it also stands out at night.  Remember this pond is going to need a water filter and something to recycle the water especially if you have fish.


If you want to put koi or some other fish in your pond you need to get the depth right, especially if you live in a colder climate.  You need a pond that goes deeper than the frost line if you want your fish to make it through the winter months.  Fish also leave waste and bacteria in the water so a filtration system is a must so that they have clean water to live in.

There are a wide variety of plants that you can add to the pond that work with the surrounding landscaping and it gives a home for your fish.