According to the RHS, the British country-side has lost three quarters of its natural ponds to urbanisation over the past few decades. The addition of ponds to any size garden can make a huge difference to wildlife who are dependent on water for breeding purposes as well as a food. Flexible pond liners such as Epalyn are ideal for natural pond builds. In this article we look at the importance of water to wildlife and tips on creating the ideal pond.
With the huge loss of ponds to wildlife and weather conditions changing there is a greater demand to create resources for them to increase their availability for food and to prevent the decline in populations by providing a breeding ground to maintain population numbers. The RHS are encouraging home owners to build a pond or water feature of any size or shape to help wildlife to thrive in an ever change country.
Frogs, newts and toads visit ponds to breed. Insects such as damselflies, dragonflies, pond skaters and water beetles need water for both food and breeding. Birds such as house martins and swallows swoop across the top of water catching water insects in flying above the water surface. Swifts also take mud from the banks of ponds to build nests.
Once you have decided to go ahead with building a pond or water feature, the next step is decide ion the size and shape according to the space you have available in your garden. Wildlife does not distinguish between natural and man-made ponds provided that they can get to the water with ease and without the risk of drowning – Hedgehogs need water to feed their hoglets so avoid drownings by making their exit as easy as their entrance to the waters edge.
Autumn is an ideal time of year to build a pond. The ground is wet enough to make digging easier plus many of wild life creatures are hibernating or in the case of swifts have flown South for the warmer weather (wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could do like wise!). When planning your pond build, accommodate wildlife by including a shallow area that allows easy entrance and exit to the water.
If you prefer a more formal style garden pond with steep edges, then wildlife experts recommend that a ramp is added to at least one corner of the pond to allow for wildlife to have safe access to the water without the risk of drowning. Chicken wire placed over the ramp structure will provide a form of grip to allow ducklings, amphibians, birds and hedgehogs a way onto dry land.
It is important to site your pond where it will get some shade through the course of the day. Too much sunlight over prolonged periods will increase the risk of algae growth – a problem that may become difficult to control. The planting of marginal plants early in Spring will provide a protective cover for wildlife to breed. Add floating aquatic plants to cover no more than 65-75 percent of the total surface. The addition of submerged plants (oxygenators) will help to maintain a healthy ecosystem within the water. Planting native plants is a good idea, however the can take over so will need regular cutting back.
Creating a pond for wildlife is a wonderful way to bring nature into your garden. Using a flexible rubber pond liner allows for good design flexibility as well as being thick and durable enough to withstand adverse weather conditions, the sun, UV exposure and visiting wildlife.
Liners Online stock standard size pond liner kits or you can order off the role by the dimensions you require.