Your pond will contain a variety of
garden pond wildlife naturally.

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Garden pond wildlife can range from frogs and toads to butterflies, dragonflies, salamanders, newts and birds.

Don't worry about any of these critters because all of them are very beneficial to the ecology of your backyard garden pond.

The butterflies and humming birds are attracted to the flowering plants.

This combination of plants and wildlife can be very enjoyable.

All of the pond wildlife consumes a lot of bugs, making your outdoor environment enjoyable.

When considering a pond, you will have to decide if it will be a natural wildlife pond or one in which to keep exotic fish, such as Koi.

Each type of pond carries a different set of building requirements.

If you want a wildlife pond the depth does not need to be more than 20", but if you are leaning toward a Koi or gold fishpond, the depth needs to be 24"-30".

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Garden Pond Predators

Attracting Birds

Bird at the pond.

No matter what kind of pond you build, attracting birds will become a feature in garden pond wildlife. These critters love the sound of the water and plant life around the pond.

If you want to attract hummingbirds, just place a trumpet flower, or bright red impatiens near your pond.

In addition to hummingbirds, other backyard birds such as finches and bluebirds will visit, looking for insects to eat. This is very beneficial to the pond wildlife environment and to your enjoyment of your backyard oasis.

In conclusion, if you have many varieties of birds visit and become part of the garden pond wildlife during the season for whatever reason, be thankful for this means that you have created a little ecosystem.

If everyone who could, would do this the benefits of natural ponds and settings would add much to our earth.

Butterflies

Monarch Butterfly

If you want butterflies to become part of your garden pond wildlife, a few simple things are needed and may already be in the garden.

For instance, the Monarch feeds on Milkweed, which grows wild in any non-mowed moist soil, or you can purchase one from a local plant nursery.

Milkweed is a host plant for the eggs and makes the Monarch larvae distasteful to predators.

The adult gathers nectar from plants and takes shelter at night and when the weather turns cool, in woody plants that should be located near where they feed.

Flower nectar can be found in native wildflowers such as Purple Coneflower, Black-eyed Susan, and New England Aster. Cultivated plants such as Daisy, Primrose, and Catnip, perennials, and Impatiens, Verbena, and Marigold, annuals, are but a few of the many plants that will attract butterflies.

Butterflies are everywhere that is natural but they don't drink water. Instead they obtain moisture from shallow puddles or wet soil, perfect if you have a bog area surrounding your garden pond.

Frog Habitat

Frog on a rock

Our little ponds were not even finished when it became a frog habitat.

The critters began to frolic among the stones not yet placed and pieces of wood left behind.

Once we placed rocks in one corner to support a small artificial waterfall, they really were there for the season.

A frog and toad will house themselves and hide in the rocks so leave some in the bog area of your pond. And while on the subject of bog, let the grasses and other aquatic plants that you grow there get a little larger for much needed shade in hot weather.

Encourage your amphibian friends to stay and become a part of the garden pond wildlife. They will return the favor by keeping the insect and rodent population at bay.

At night frog sounds and toads will serenade you with their croaking and peeping noises. All in all, it is a win-win combination for you and your pond.

Pond Snail

Snail eating parsley

It is only a matter of time before a certain variety of pond snail will become part of garden pond wildlife. These creatures move very slowly but will munch on plants and other vegetation at a great pace.

The right kind of mollusk will consume dead plants, therefore allowing the plants in your garden grow better.

This common garden snail should be avoided because it will eat all of your plants in a short time. These are usually shaped like little footballs about an inch in length. Natural enemies of these critters are birds, toads, turtles, and snakes, so to avoid using pesticides do encourage pond wildlife as a means to control this common pest.

If you really want beneficial mollusks, the Malaysian trumpet snail that can be good to the environment, feeding primarily on algae. The habitat of this creature is Africa and Asia, thriving in the tropical atmosphere.

For most of us living outside of the tropics, the only place to keep this form of mollusk is inside a tank in cold weather. Whatever you decide, rest assured that adding this critter to your garden pond wildlife will help with its ecology and your further enjoyment of a wildlife water feature.

Aquatic Turtles

Aquatic turtle

Other garden pond wildlife critters that may consider living near your pond are the aquatic turtles.

These critters, with necks and cloacal areas that can absorb oxygen, enables them to hibernate in water.

One of many bonuses in having turtles around is that if they are aquatic, they eat insects.

If you do purchase a few painted turtles and they do eat insects, you will still have to provide some other kind of food to give every two days. The foods to provide would be veggies and pellets.

Keep in mind that fish is part of their diet also, a big factor in considering whether to build a fishpond or a wildlife pond.

The aquatic reptiles also mate in water and as a result have become endangered by the urban sprawl, eliminating many natural turtle habitats and pollution of lakes, and streams.

So, if a turtle family decides to take up residence in your garden pond, take comfort in knowing that you are contributing to wildlife preservation in a small but significant way.

Facts about Dragonflies

Dragonfly

Little known facts about dragonflies are that these little creatures eat their weight in mosquitoes and larvae on the pond surface.

No garden pond would be complete without dragonflies and damselfies. This can be a great help in controlling one of the most annoying insects of summer.

These creatures come in many colors and sizes, are medium to large as insects go, with long slender almost transparent wings.

More than 5,000 worldwide with about 450 species living in North American, dragonflies lifespan of less than a year, is contrary to the myth that they live only 24 hours.

Keep in mind that in the ecosystem of your pond, attracting dragonflies fits into food chain that is nature.

Frogs and other wildlife residing in your pond as well as consuming a lot of mosquitoes, all part of the life cycle, will eat them.



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