Can You Put Goldfish In A Pond?

Have you heard that goldfish can live in a pond but thought it sounded a bit silly? So many people keep goldfish in a small bowl, why would they need a large pond?

Or maybe you’re planning to set up your own pond and you were wondering if it’s safe to keep goldfish in your pond. Is your pond big enough? Is it going to get too cold?

So, can you put goldfish in a pond?

In short — yes, you can keep goldfish in a pond — in fact, they will thrive there as it’s one of the best places to house them. We’re going to tell you how to do it here.

Goldfish can grow to very large sizes, and it’s hard for many people to set up an aquarium that’s large enough for them. This is especially true if you wish to house many goldfish.

What’s the workaround for this? Create a pond for your goldfish!

Why Ponds Are The Ideal Habitat For Goldfish

Juvenile goldfish can start off in a small environment. But, adults need plenty of space to swim and grow.

The smallest amount of water you need for a single adult goldfish is 30 gallons. Ideally, you’ll be able to provide 40 to 50 gallons for a single goldfish. If you want to add more goldfish to the tank, you’ll need an extra 10 gallons per fish.

You might be wondering why these fish need so much space. People give fish away at fairs. Parents buy goldfish as their children’s first pet and keep them in bowls. Why do they need so much space?

The truth is that goldfish can grow very large. The average goldfish will grow for about 6-7 in (15-18 cm) long, but some have even grown up to 14 in (35.5 cm) long! Goldfish grow rapidly, and they continue growing throughout their lives.

In ideal conditions, most goldfish can live for 10-15 years. Goldfish kept in a bowl will usually die within 2-3 years.

How To Create The Ideal Pond Environment

Ponds can be exciting, especially if you’ve never had one before. Yet, there are a few things you should do to make sure you create the perfect pond environment.

Which Goldfish Can You Keep In A Pond?

Not all goldfish can live in pond conditions. Some goldfish can’t handle the cold temperatures that come with winter.

You SHOULD NOT house most fancy goldfish in a pond. They cannot handle extreme temperatures and fluctuating water parameters. The one fancy goldfish which is an exception is the Fantail Goldfish.

These are the goldfish that do best in outdoor ponds:

Pond Size For Your Fish

One of the most important steps in setting up your pond is making sure that it is the right size.

The amount of space your goldfish needs in a pond is like the amount it needs in an aquarium. The smallest size pond you want for a single goldfish is 40 gallons. For every additional goldfish you add to the pond, you should have an extra 10 gallons.

Ponds should also have at least one area that is deeper than 2 ft (0.6 m). Deeper water is better able to regulate temperature.

During the summer, the deeper areas of the pond will be cooler. They will also provide a well-oxygenated area for your goldfish to hang out. During the winter, the deeper area will be warmer and is a good area for your fish to escape the cold.

But, if you’re able to provide your goldfish with even more space, that’s even better! The bigger the pond you can provide your goldfish, the better. They love to swim around and explore, so no pond can be too big for them.

There are benefits to having a larger pond as well. The more water you have, the less the water parameters are going to change.

Goldfish Pond Mates – Housing With Koi

If you plan on adding some goldfish pond mates, koi might be one consideration. Housing your goldfish with koi, you’re going to need an even larger pond. Koi grow exceptionally larger than goldish and need hundreds of gallons of water.

Where To Place Your Pond

Before setting up your pond, you need to pick the perfect location for it. Your goldfish should have access to both sun and shade throughout the day.

The entire pond should not be in direct sunlight as the water may heat up too much and roast your fish. But, the pond shouldn’t be in full shade either as the fish like to swim where it’s sunny.

Still, you should not place your pond beneath trees or shrubs that lose their leaves. The leaves will fall off into the water where they will break down and cause ammonia in the water.

Live Pond Plants

If your pond receives too much sunlight, try adding some live pond plants to create shade. Some of the best plants for this include water lettuce, water lilies, and lotus.

The vegetation also provides fresh food for your goldfish. Goldfish are omnivores who need a regular diet of greens besides pellets. To keep your goldfish happy, vegetation should cover at least 30-50% of your pond.

Plants are also great because they’ll help regulate the water quality of your pond. Plants absorb nitrates from the water and add oxygen to the water.


The filter provides oxygen to the water by stirring up the surface area. It also filters out impurities from the water to keep it clean.

It is imperative that you watch the water parameters of your pond and keep them within these ranges:

Can You Create An Indoor Pond?

What if you’d rather keep your fish inside where they’ll be protected? What if you want to keep fancy goldfish in a pond, but you know they won’t survive outside? Set up an indoor pond! Many people enjoy doing this because it provides more space and is easier to clean than an aquarium.

Will Goldfish Multiply In A Pond?

Goldfish are notorious for breeding, but this doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll end up with babies. Goldfish are also notorious for feeding on eggs. If you want to breed your goldfish, you’ll need to set protective measures in place.

Still, breeding takes place between April and May. During this time, a single female may spawn up to 10 times. During each spawn, the female may produce between 500-3,000 eggs.


Ponds are one of the best places you can keep your goldfish. Goldfish can grow very large, and they need plenty of space to swim and grow. They are also very social fish who love to live with other goldfish. A pond provides the perfect environment for that.

If you’re thinking of keeping goldfish in a pond, go for it! Ponds are a beautiful addition to any backyard. Plus, they allow you to enjoy many colorful goldfish year-round.

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