How To Handle A Hosepipe Ban As A Pond Owner

The longest heatwave in 42 years has meant that hosepipe bans are being imposed across the UK. Northern Ireland has had a ban on the use of hose pipes since Friday, 29th June and one is soon to his the North of England. 

As a pond owner, the prospect of a hosepipe ban can be frightening when hot weather increases evaporation in your garden pond. With this in mind, you should clue yourself up on how to use alternative water sources instead of your hose pipe to avoid a staggering fine of £1,000.

The main restrictions during a ban are:

  • Watering a garden and/or plants using a hosepipe
  • Cleaning a private car, van, motorbike, trailer, caravan or leisure boat using a hosepipe
  • Filling or maintaining a domestic swimming pool, paddling pool or ornamental fountain
  • Cleaning walls or windows using a hosepipe
  • Using a water from a hosepipe for domestic recreational use
  • Cleaning paths or patios using a hosepipe
  • Cleaning other artificial outdoor surfaces using a hosepipe. 

Whilst ornamental ponds are banned from being topped up during a hosepipe ban, fish ponds can still be filled up to safeguard their welfare.1 It is vital that you prepare the tap water with dechlorinator before putting it into your pond to ensure that your fish remain happy and healthy. 

So what can I do?

Use a Water Butt

If you planned ahead then you might have a water butt installed in your garden where rainwater has been collecting. This is a great natural source for you to use to keep your pond topped up, and it is safer than tap water as it will have fewer chemicals and chlorine in. You will still need to do a water test to ensure that it is safe for your fish and to keep an eye on the pH levels as rainwater can sometimes mess up the balance of pH in your pond water.

Create a shade

Create shade over your pond using a temporary canopy or garden parasol to reduce evaporation and algae growth, this will keep your pond water cleaner for longer.

Oxygenate your pond

Oxygen plays a vital role in maintaining a healthy pond environment and pond oxygen levels are low in hot weather. Use an air pump to oxygenate your pond and water treatments to get rid of green water and blanket weed algae - both deoxygenating. If you are adding any water treatments to your pond, early morning or late evening are the best times to do so. Oxygen optimised pond won't have a foul smell and will keep your fish safe.

Pond Maintenance

If you need to carry out any pond maintenance, make sure to do it in the early morning or evening when temperatures are lower as this reduces evaporation.