Frog on rock

Providing water for wildlife

Almost any water body, whatever its size, will have some wildlife value, even if only as a drinking place for birds.

However, this value can be greatly increased if the pond is well designed and maintained. Learn how to plan, build and maintain a pond that's great for wildlife. 

The importance of ponds as a habitat

Of all the habitats you can create to help wildlife, a pond is probably the most effective.

A well-designed and maintained pond is a haven for all sorts of plants, birds and animals. It is a complex habitat full of algae and plants, scavengers, predators, herbivores, decomposers and parasites. Some species spend their whole life in the pond, for instance water snails and small crustaceans, while others use it for only part of their life cycle, such as pond skaters. 

A pond provides essential drinking and bathing water for birds and mammals. If you plant a range of plant species around the edge, you’ll encourage an even greater diversity of wildlife. 

Close up of pond

Wildlife in ponds

Four-spotted chaser
From insects to amphibians and even birds, there's a wealth of wildlife that will benefit from a pond in your garden.

Bog gardens

Abernethy RSPB reserve. Speyside, Scotland.
If a pond's not for you, why not try a bog!

Supporting communities to help nature thrive

Sponsored by Barratt developments PLC

RSPB and Barratt Developments PLC are working together to develop resources that support communities to help nature thrive in their gardens and balconies. Read about our wider partnership and commitments to nature-friendly homes.