How To Cover A Pond In The Winter? Tips, Tricks & DIY

In this article we’ll explain why you should cover your pond in the winter, the equipment you need to do it and finally exactly how to cover your pond in the winter.

Let’s begin.

Do I Need To Cover My Pond In Winter?

Yes. As the temperatures fall in the winter, your fish will become slower and duller. This is because the rate of metabolism in fish is lower in the winter.

They won’t find shelter as actively as they usually do and are, therefore, more prone to being attacked by herons and other fish predators. Moreover, there’s little to no vegetation during the winters, so your fish are more exposed to the elements.

So, you most definitely need to cover your pond in winter.

Benefits of a Winter Pond Cover:

A winter pond cover comes with many benefits, both for your pond and the fish in it. Let’s have a quick walkthrough of some of the most prominent benefits of a winter pond cover.

Easy to Build

If you think building a winter pond cover is not something you can do yourself, you’re highly mistaken. Building DIY covers for covering ponds in winter are straightforward to make. It takes just a few hours, provided that you’ve got all the supplies arranged beforehand.

Once you get down to building a winter pond cover, you’ll be done within a few hours.

No Ice Forms on the Pond

One of the most common problems that people with ponds often struggle with is a frozen pond. When a pond freezes, there’s no way for fresh air to enter the pond, resulting in life suffering greatly.

However, with a winter pond cover, no ice forms on the pond. Therefore, the temperature around the pond is maintained at a higher level compared to what the temperature is outdoors.


If you use suitable materials to build a winter pond cover, it’ll last for many winters. So you can use it again and again and reap maximum benefits from it. The design of a winter pond cover is that it withstands winter winds and retains its efficiency year after year.

Easy Disassembling and Storage

Winter pool covers are as easy to disassemble as they are to build. When the temperature warms up and you don’t feel a pool cover is needed any longer, you can disassemble it and store it away to use next winter.

Keeps the Pond Clean

Another undeniable benefit of winter pond cover is that it keeps your pond clean. It keeps debris and fallen leaves away from the pond and ensures it stays clean throughout the winter.

Should You Cover Your Pond?

Yes, it would be best if you cover your pond. A pond cover not only keeps your pond clean and ice-free but also ensures that your fish are protected from predators.

What Can I Cover My Pond With?

There are many types of pond covers that you can use to cover your pond. Each type of pond cover is associated with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. If you want to know how to protect a pond in winter, continue reading.

Pond Cover Ideas & Types

Solid Covers for Snow and Ice

Suppose the winters are pretty long in your region, and it snows heavily. In that case, you can consider installing permanent structures over your pond to keep it safe from ice and other external elements like debris and fish predators.

Solid structures for snow and ice serve the purpose of a pond cover and add to the aesthetics of your property. Some common ideas for solid structures for snow and ice include gazebos and pergolas. A gazebo has a solid roof, whereas a pergola does not. This makes a gazebo a better option if you’re looking for solid pond cover for snow and ice.

If you don’t want a permanent solid pond cover, you can install shade sails over the pond. They’ll serve as efficient covers and protect your pond from ice, debris, and fish predators. You can take shade sails down and store them away when the weather gets favorable for the pond fish.

Solid pond covers like tarps are a great option, but the problem with solid covers is that they aren’t permeable and block the exchange of gases. As a result, fish and plants suffer from the buildup of waste gases inside the pond and eventually die. You can use solid pond covers for a short duration, though.


Another popular pond cover option is metal pond covers. They resemble a cage that’s installed over the pond. Metal covers are durable and reliable. You can remove them when you no longer want to cover your pond.


One of the kinds of best winter pond cover is temporary greenhouse structures. Just like you make a greenhouse for your plants, you can replicate the design for your pond too.

Greenhouse-style pond cover maintains the temperature around your pond to provide the fish and pond vegetation with ideal growing conditions. The temperature inside the temporary greenhouse doesn’t fall as low as the actual temperature.

As a result, the fish stays healthy and active, and most of the temperature-sensitive vegetation survives, and at times, even thrives.

Ice Cover

A solid layer of ice can also serve as an adequate pond cover. However, it’s not the best option for ponds with fish since all waste gases get trapped inside the pond, and fish will die eventually.

If you’ve got fish in your pond, you can drill holes into the solid layer of ice to allow a passage to exchange gases.

Nets and Permeable Covers

Nets and permeable covers are the best kinds of pond covers for winters. They keep the pond clean of debris and fallen leaves and also protect the fish from predators. They allow a free exchange of gases as well.

DIY Options

If none of the commercially available pond covers to suit your requirements or budget, you can always build a DIY pond cover. As we mentioned earlier, DIY pond covers are pretty quick and straightforward to make.

How to Install Your Cover

Installing a net pond cover over your Koi fish pond is very easy. All you’ll need are anchors that will serve as the attachment point for the pond cover and ropes.

The anchors are secured into the ground around the pond securely. The pond cover comes with ropes for attachments across its perimeter. Use these ropes to attach the cover to the anchors.

However, if you’re planning to build a greenhouse-style pond cover, you’ll need a conduit to form the cover’s frame and tarps for the cover. So, first, you will have to anchor the conduit to the ground. Next, the conduit that makes the spine will be attached to the arches using duct tape, and then the cover will be installed over the frame in the end.

Video: Aquascape’s How To Prepare Your Pond for Fall and Winter

Jack Dempsey