Guppies are known for two things; their beautiful color and their breeding rate. Guppies breed so fast that soon your aquarium won’t be enough to house their growing number. So, if there’s a pond in your backyard, you need to know certain things before making the emigration.
Let’s move unto the real question i.e. can guppies live in a pond?
Do GuppiesLlive In A Pond?
Yes, a warm pond that doesn’t fall below 20°C even in winter will be a suitable habitat for guppies. Ideally, the temperature for guppies should be 72°F to 82°F (20°C to 28°C). Also, the water quality of the pond, along with filtration, should be maintained.
Which Season Is The Best To Keep Guppy Outside?
Guppies are tropical fish which means, their natural habitats are in the warmer region.
They thrive and breed in warm tropical areas, so if you plan to keep them out in the pond, make sure the water temperature is high.
It isn’t possible to keep guppies outside all year round in the US or Europe as the temperature drops highly during winter. So, whenever you plan to take your guppies out in the pond, you have to do it during summer or spring.
However, if you have a heater that can maintain your pond’s water temperature, you can do the transition in any season. But, you need to be extra careful while migrating them during winter because a sudden drop of temperature for even a short duration can be fatal.
What Happens If The Pond Temperature Is Lower Than 20°C?
You might not see the immediate effect while keeping guppies below their ideal temperature. But this will cause anxiety, stress, and a drastic drop in their immune system. This will put them at risk of getting diseases and sickness.
You will also notice that your guppies won’t be at the same energy level as in the aquarium. And this passive behavior will lead to less mating and eventually less breeding.
How Old Should A Guppy Be To Be Kept Outside In A Pond?
It doesn’t matter how old a guppy can be to be kept outside in a pond. Guppies can quickly adapt to a new environment, so age won’t limit a guppy’s ability to thrive in a new habitat as long as the water is clean and warm.
Can Guppy Fries Be Kept In A Pond?
Yes, guppy fries, too, can be kept in a pond. You can breed them in a pond and have them thrive there before putting them back in the aquarium. However, ponds are somewhat similar to their natural habitat, which means other aquatic animals will also be there alongside guppy fries.
So guppy fries will have to protect themselves from predators who will be lurking in your pond. You will have to preserve the guppy fries from frogs, turtles, and even birds, along with bigger fishes.
It might come as a surprise to you, but a guppy fry’s main predator could be its mother. Guppies are known for cannibalism. Whenever there’s food scarcity, guppies tend to eat their offsprings. Often the newly born fries become a protein diet for the guppies.
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Challenges Of Keeping Guppies In A Pond
There are several things that you need to be mindful of before keeping your guppies in a pond. It’s not like you dig a pond one day and just put guppies the next day and expect them to thrive without adequate attention.
So, below are some of the challenges while keeping guppies in a pond.
Maintaining Water Temperature
Guppies are tropical fishes that need warm water for thriving. So, maintaining water temperature is of utmost priority while keeping guppies in a pond. Get a pond heater that can effectively warm your guppy’s habitat during winter.
Here is a deicer and heater that I use for maintaining water temperature in my backyard pond.
What I love about this product is it’s highly durable and can withstand extreme temperatures! Other notable features are auto shut-off function and build-in LED light. It also comes with a 3-year warranty!
However, if you have a bigger pond, it won’t be sufficient. It comes with 300-watts capacity.
Protect Your Guppies From Predators
In an aquarium, you don’t have to worry much about getting your guppy eaten by predators. But in the wild, you have to take extra precautions for your guppies. Predators like the frog and other big fishes lurk in the water to gulp up your guppies.
Make sure you don’t add big fishes in the pond beforehand. Not only the amphibian predators, but you also need to consider your guppies’ protection from birds. Put up a mosquito net over the pond to protect your guppies from aerial attacks.
Putting up a mosquito net will also prevent your guppy from jumping over the pond to land. Guppies are known for jumping out of the water, so this will help.
Protecting Your Guppy Fry
Guppy babies in the pond need protection from every kind of threat. Guppies, when facing food scarcity, tend to display cannibalistic nature. So, they won’t hesitate for a bit to devour their children when they have nothing to eat.
Ensure that you put enough feed for your guppies so that they won’t heed eating their babies.
Guppies breed rapidly, and it can be troublesome to feed them when they turn into a considerable school. Even when you put the feed in the pond, only the big guppies will likely eat most of the meal. The fries and young guppies will always be hungry. This can be a real headache, so you need to be aware before putting your guppies in a pond.
Quality Of Water
Unlike an aquarium, it isn’t possible to change the water often. So, you will have a hard time maintaining the water quality. In a pond, the waste from your fishes and various aquatic creatures will make the water polluted. And this pollutant will limit the growth of your guppy fries.
To prevent your pond water from getting dirty, weed out the grasses, and use a pond cleaner along with a filter. Also, take out some time for cleaning the pond every once in a while.
Here’s pond testing kit I use: API Pond Master Test Kit
This kit comes equipped with test tubes, charts, and detailed instructions to measure the pond’s pH balance, ammonia concentration, nitrite levels, and phosphate content!
Hard To Pick Out The Infected One
It will be hard to pick out the infected one when you keep your guppies in a pond. If you kept them in an aquarium, you would have easily spotted the infected fish and treated him immediately.
Advantages Of Keeping Guppies In A Pond
There are several advantages of keeping guppies in a pond. Once you know these positive impacts, you will be enticed further to make a pond for your guppies.
Physical And Mental Well-Being
The study knows that keeping fishes in a pond helps create a relaxing environment beneficial to both your physical and mental health. It enables you to give a Zen-like feeling, which will calm your mind and reduce anxiety.
Keeping guppy in a pond will help in boosting your serotonin level. Serotonin is also known as a happy chemical our body produces when we are happy.
Keeps your Hobby In Budget
Having a pond will significantly decrease your costs for continuing your favorite hobby. The rapid growth of guppy is directly proportional to breaking your bank. So, when you keep your guppy in a pond, you will be saving loads of money to support them.
One great thing about keeping guppies outdoor is that you won’t be needing air conditioning to keep the temperature maintained. A pond’s significant benefit is that it acts as a natural reservoir during the monsoon season.
Unlike an aquarium, your guppies will have more freedom and space to swim in a pond.
Algae and several natural plants grow in the pond, which is a source of nutrition for guppies. Also, ponds will house several water insects. These insects are a great protein source and help in the healthy growth of your guppy.
Making A Pond For Guppies
Now that you’ve decided to keep your guppies in a pond, you need to make sure that you have created a good pond that is habitable for them.
Here’s how I made a pond for my guppies.
Digging A Pit
Before digging a hole, you need to look for available pond liners so that your pond liners fit precisely with the pit. Dig a pit of dimension 1.5 X 1m and 20 cm deep. 20 cm depth will be enough for guppies and most aquatic plants.
While digging, dig the sides straight down without breaking walls. Use wooden planks on the sides to level evenly on sides.
Lay The Liner
Next, lay the liner over the pit. Spread the liner without overstretching. You can use bricks on the side to put some weight over the liner so that it won’t get blown by a gust of wind.
Pour Water Over The Pit
Now, start filling the pit about half full. The reason behind it is that now you can see the creases of the liner in the pond. You will now have to ease out the liner and fix the pleats gently. Nobody wants a pleated liner in their pond.
After you achieve a pleat-less liner in your pit, you can place bricks around the edges. Bricks will hide the edges of the liner after you complete laying the bricks.
Filling The Outside Area
Before filling the whole pit with water, you need to decide beforehand on whether you want to have a water pump in your pond or not. Place the pump or water feature in the middle and run the cords to the side of the pond. The reason behind fixing all this first is that you don’t want a not-working water feature after you’ve filled your pit full of water.
Then, use some quick setting cement in between the bricks. You don’t need to make it waterproof as your pond liner will already make it so.
Now, throw dirt and sand over the bricks and raise the outer area of the pit. This way, your bricks won’t be visible.
Add Rocks For A Natural Look
Get rocks of bigger size (that you can lift) and place them on the side of the pit. This will give a natural look to your guppy pond.
Get Some Aquatic Plants
Your pond is almost ready. Get some aquatic plants to provide a natural habitat for your guppies.
Now that you’ve got plants in your pond, you can pour water up to the level of the liner.
Can You Breed Guppy In A Pond?
Yes, you can breed guppy in a pond. A pond is much suitable in terms of breeding for fishes than in tanks. However, as I said earlier, you need to maintain temperature, i.e., above 20 degrees Celsius, and clean water in your pond for breeding.
A pond will be enough to accommodate the guppy fry and gives ample space for them to thrive.
What Should You Feed The Guppies In The Pond?
First, a pond itself will have its ecosystem. It will house several other insects and mosquito larvae, which can be an excellent food resource for your guppies.
However, if you’ve just made a pond, you might not have the ecosystem mentioned earlier yet. So, feed at least once a day. Your feed needs to have algae and other dedicated guppy food, which you can easily find in the market.
Here’s a link to one if you are interested:
Besides being packed with nutrients guppies need, it is free of dyes and preservatives!
You can also feed leftover veggies (uncooked, of course) to your guppies. But, again, make sure you crush them into tiny pieces which will fit in their tiny mouth.
Use these algae feed for your guppies, for starters.
After a couple of months, you will see that pond itself has started making food. Have some algae and mosses in your pond to create a habitat fit for your guppies.
What Are Other Fishes Suitable For Keeping In A Pond?
Guppy being tropical can be hard to keep during winter unless you have an investment for heaters. So, here I have listed some of the alternate fishes that can be controlled in your pond.
This beautiful-looking fish can be kept outdoors in a pond. They are easy to maintain outdoor and require less attention. Unlike other fishes such as Koi, goldfish do not dig the aquatic plants’ roots, thus harmonizing with the pond ecosystem.
This breed of fish needs a minimum depth of 28 inches and can quickly adapt in shallow ponds. They are the most comfortable fish to look after because they are highly resistant to low water quality. They can feed on every kind of insect that is available in the pond. Just like guppies, they like to live in school consisting of 10 to 20 minnows.
Other fishes that can be kept in the pond are Shubunkin, Koi Carp, Pumpkinseed, Ide, Golden Tench, etc.
Final Words On Can Guppies Live In A Pond
The breeding frenzy of guppy will make you build a pond. If you want your guppies to have a quality life with sufficient space to eat and breed, then you have to keep them in a pond.
Building a pond will undoubtedly lower your costs in growing your guppy. Also, making a pond and keeping these beautiful fishes in your backyard will be aesthetically pleasing. Not only guppy, but again, your other fishes will love to make the pond their habitat.
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