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5 Cover Ideas For Your Backyard Pond

Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that at no cost to you, we may receive a small commission for made purchases.

Pond covers are crucial to keeping your pond clean and safe for any aquatic life that calls your pond their home.

Covers are integral due to their ability to keep out leaves and any other debris from getting into the pond. 

Another issue ponds face is natural predators; they will target ponds due to the wildlife being sitting ducks.

Having a cover over your pond will prevent the predators from getting to the animals or plants living there.

Over the winter ice will build up and this can be catastrophic to the pond (see also ‘How To Heat A Pond In Winter‘). Having a cover will prevent ice from building and keep the pond at a comfortable temperature.

There are many different types of pond cover and in this article we will be going through the five most popular types that you will find.

So whether you want your pond completely covered or just a small cover to keep your ecosystem thriving, we are sure you will find something to your taste.


Our first pond cover is mesh. The rigid mesh structure can be installed quickly and easily on top of your pond.

Rigid mesh keeps anything large from falling into the pond, this can be any pets such as cats or dogs and will also keep children from falling into the pond.

The mesh allows fish and frogs to come to the surface of the pond. An alternative to mesh is chicken wire. However chicken wire is not stable and would not be able to hold a child’s weight. 

Dome Covers

Much like mesh, dome covers are easy to install over your pond. Domes are the ideal repellent for predators such as racoons, hawks or herons.

The dome cover will protect the pond year round, however in winter time you will need to shovel snow from around and above the dome to prevent the dome collapsing under the weight.

The dome is also susceptible to strong winds blowing it away so be sure that the dome is nailed down with metal pegs to prevent this.

Leaf Netting

Otherwise known as ‘fine pond netting’ leaf netting is the perfect cover if your pond is located next to a tree. As the name implies leaf netting is designed to keep leaves from falling into your pond. 

Having a few leaves in the pond is not a cause for concern, however if your pond is full of sunken leaves then the nutrient balance of the pond will change and can be terrible for the wildlife living within. 

A leaf net has other benefits than just protection from falling leaves.

The netting will also reduce the amount of time it takes to clean the pond due to preventing foreign objects you would usually have to dig out. It also helps in reducing the level of algae growth.

Leaf netting is easy to customize to your pond, it comes in a range of sizes and can be easily trimmed down if needs be.

The other advantage to leaf netting is once the trees have lost their leaves the netting can be removed easily and then installed quickly again ready for spring.

Shade Sail

If your pond is exposed to the sun it can heat up quickly especially during the summer months.

5 Cover Ideas For Your Backyard Pool (1)

Overexposure to heat leads to increased evaporation, algae overgrowth and the fish can find the temperature uncomfortable. 

Shade sails are perfect for protecting your pond from the sun, it does this by creating shade and keeping the temperature moderate.

It also much like leaf netting will keep any leaves from falling in your pond.

Shade sails can be put up and secured with metal poles or tied up to a tree next to the pond.


The final pond cover is a pergola. A pergola is mainly for ponds full of fish. Much like the shade sail it will protect your pond from the sun, pergolas can come pre made or can be made from scratch.

The best perk the pergola has is it enhances the area around the pond as it can double up as a nice shaded seating area.

Final Thoughts

So that is it. Five unique and varied pool covers to cover your garden pond (check out our ‘How To Shade A Garden Pond‘ guide too). 

What cover you need should depend on the location of your pond. Is your pond next to a tree?

Then leaf netting is for you. Is it exposed to the sun year round? Then a pergola or shade sail is right up your street. 

A pond cover is crucial to making sure your pond is protected from nature and the elements but the right pond cover will make your life easier too.

So no matter what type of cover you choose, you can be sure that each and everyone of them will keep your pond safe.

author avatar
Anthony Barnes
Anthony Barnes is the founder of Water Heater Hub and a second-generation plumber by profession. Before developing Water Heater Hub, Anthony Barnes was a full-time plumber, and he has undertaken a wide variety of projects over the decades. As a second-generation plumber, it was easy for Anthony to get used to the technicalities of all from a tender age


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