Feeding the fish, spotting water boatmen and watching tadpoles transform into frogs are all activities that kids love - and are educational to boot!
However, it's always important to put safety precautions in place whenever young children are around water.
AllPetSolutions aquatic team have created our guide for helping children learn how to love your pond and care for your fish; and how to ensure they can do so safely.
Safety Precautions for Garden Ponds
There are lots of ways you can safeguard children from shallow water, and be able to encourage them to learn and play around water.
One of the most straightforward solutions is to use fencing as a precaution.
Deepwater is particularly dangerous, and so installing a fence around the perimeter that is tall enough to prevent easy access and free of gaps is ideal!
If small children are likely to play in your garden unsupervised, then a safety cover or grid is essential. These add to the safeguard of having a fenced area and mean that should any kids fall into the pond, they won't be able to submerge under the water.
You can also install discreet safety covers just beneath the surface, so they don't detract from your enjoyment of your pond!
Netting is another great solution and is ideal for supervised pond playtime. It's best to make sure the net is strong and has secure lines so that it can't be easily moved or torn.
This isn't as reliable as a proper safety cover, and nets aren't designed to bear weight but do stop thrown objects or toys going into the pond, and a curious child trying to retrieve them.
Sloped Pond Edges
Another great option is to create a sloping edge on the sides of your pond instead of a sudden drop.
This prevents children from falling directly into deep water, and putting rocks or metal grating around the edges will ensure little feet don't slip on the pond liner.
Good Pond Maintenance
Keeping your pond clean and clear is ideal - gathered leaves and debris can be extremely slippery when wet, and make it all too easy to fall.
Equipment should be installed away from pathways to avoid a trip hazard, and water treatments, filer media and spare parts should be kept securely in a shed or locked storage bin.
As an added precaution, using alarm systems is an advanced safety measure, and ideal when children live in a home with a pond and might be tempted to sneak into the garden to play.
Alarm systems can be fitted on pond fencing or gates, and on doors leading out to the pond area to ensure there is somebody to hand to supervise safe playtime.
Monitoring Children Around Water
Of course, the best solution to prevent a garden pond becoming a safety hazard is always to keep a close eye on young children whenever they are playing around water, and to have a set of rules about when it is ok to play near the pond.
However, safety precautions are a great solution in a busy household and mean that your garden feature is there to be enjoyed.
With the diverse ecosystems and life forms that a pond is home to, they are a great way to help kids learn about animal care, mother nature, and how to be a responsible fish owner!