A fishpond can make a very relaxing and pleasant feature in your garden. However, your water feature could also attract snakes, attracted by the prospect of making a meal of your prized koi carp. Here's some practical advice on how to keep snakes away from your fishpond.
What attracts snakes?
Snakes choose a habitat in which to live and breed based on their basic requirements for survival:
Unfortunately, your garden fishpond can provide a snake with all these things.
Your pond is a great habitat for insects, small amphibians, and waterfowl, all of which can provide food for smaller snakes that may in turn attract larger species that prey on them.
Keeping snakes away from your fishpond
In some Australian states, it's illegal to kill or catch a native species of snake. If you see a snake regularly hanging around your pond, the best course of action is to call out a good local pest control firm and ask them to remove and relocate it. It's sensible to ask the contractor to check around your pond area for snake nests, and remove them too if necessary.
Once you know that the area around your pond is free from snakes, you can take measures to keep any newcomers away.
Remove hiding places
Tall stands of ornamental grasses and reeds around your pond can make great hiding places for snakes, as can arrangements of rocks and stones. Fitting fine netting over your rockery can help to prevent entry by prey animals such as small frogs and lizards and will also keep snakes out.
Snakes generally don't like to be caught out in the open where they feel vulnerable to aerial predators. For this reason, you should keep the grass around your garden pond mown short. Cut back any low undergrowth, bushes and hedging too.
You could also consider putting up a physical barrier to snakes around the edge of your fishpond. To do this, buy some fine-mesh snake netting from your local DIY store and set it up around the water's edge, ensuring that you sink the netting into the ground so that it is secure. Make sure that the netting is set with a slightly outfacing angle to prevent snakes from scaling it and climbing over the top.
Snakes are not welcome visitors to your fishpond, especially if they make a meal of your fish. You can keep snakes away from your pond by following the guidelines given above.