Having a pond in your backyard can be an enjoyable experience, not just for you, but for the wildlife in your area as well. Ponds often encourage small ecosystems to form, sustaining from the bugs, reptiles, and amphibians that call your pond home.
It often doesn’t take that long after a pond is set up for animals to come and make their home there, and at some point, you might come to realize that your pond is now home to newts, among other animals.
If you want to encourage the newts to repeatedly come to your pond, you are going to want to make the area as appealing as possible to them.
To make your pond the perfect place for newts and other animals that newts coexist with, you are going to want to know about what newts need in their habitat and how to make your pond as appealing as possible for them.
The best way to go about doing this is to learn what will bring newts to your location and how you can maintain those aspects of your pond.
First things first, you are going to want to focus on aspects of the pond that draw newts in. This will generally include vegetation that your local newts appreciate, as well as working with other aspects of the pond to keep it as newt-friendly as possible.
Creating a Newt-Friendly Pond
To look after the newts in your pond, you are first going to want to attract the newts to the pond and keep predators from establishing their homes at the pond. This means that you will not want to introduce fish into the pond, as fish are natural predators of newts and newt young.
If you still want fish in your backyard pond, then you will want to build a separate pond for them, as newts will not want to hang out around a pond with their natural predators in them.
Fish, of all types, will go after newt eggs and larvae, meaning that newts won’t want to lay their young at your pond, which also means that they likely won’t want to spend as much time near there.
You will also want to make sure that you have the appropriate vegetation around the pond and inside the pond. Newts appreciate vegetation that allows for hiding and shelter, meaning that many plants that have large and branching leaves are going to be appreciated by the potential newts in the area.
You will also want to add logs, branches, and rocks for them to burrow under and hide in, as these will be safe places for them as well as other amphibians that will want to call your pond home.
While all areas of the world will be able to sustain different plants, some of the most common newt-encouraging plants that you can have around your pond include watercress, water speedwell, flote-grass, and water forget-me-nots.
If you are unsure of the plants suitable for your area, you will want to look up what some of the local species of newt are and research what kinds of plants those specific species would want. This may take a bit of time and research to learn which newts are native to your area and then find which specific plants those newts appreciate though.
These plants are historically where newts prefer to lay their eggs during and after mating season, so having these plants around your pond will encourage them to choose your pond as the best place for them to set up their new families.
You don’t want to disturb the plants too much, especially during mating season, but you will be able to tell when these plants have eggs laid in their leaves as there will be tiny eggs hidden inside the folds of the leaves.
Inside the pond itself, underneath the water, you will also want to set up some loose rockeries so that the young have places to swim and hide within the water.
This provides them with a safe environment while they grow up, and adult newts will recognize this as an optimal area to hang around, especially during mating season.
By creating the right environment for potential newts to come to your pond for, you can drastically increase the chances that by the time your pond is fully integrated into the surrounding ecosystem, you will have some newts calling the place home.
Caring for the Newts in the Pond
Once you have established a newt-friendly area for your pond, you will want to wait and let time pass for the newts to discover the area, deem it safe to live, and make their homes there.
Newts commonly like to hide underneath logs and rocks, and while you shouldn’t disturb their areas too much, these are some places to look to determine if you have newts in the area yet.
As a general rule, you don’t want to interact with the newts too much. They are completely safe for people, but they are incredibly delicate and may be scared off by a person coming and prodding around their environment for them.
So long as you are careful with the newts and you keep your hands wet, you can actually hold newts, but you should not keep the newts away from the pond for longer than five minutes at a time, for their own sake. This will allow you to figure out what species of newt you have in the area by the markings and coloration.
Wild newts do not necessarily need intervention for care, such as providing food for them, you can absolutely do so to try and make their environment as comfortable as possible. Some easily available foods that you can purchase from aquatic-catering pet stores include daphnia, bloodworms, and brine shrimp.
It is best not to alter the pond, especially the water, in any way besides general maintenance so as to keep the natural aspects of the pond’s ecosystem. You shouldn’t use a filter in the pond’s water, as algae feeds the insects that newts thrive on.
Frogs and newts can coexist together in your pond environment, but be mindful that they will both eat each other’s young. As long as there does not seem to be an overwhelming number of frogs compared to newts, they should be fine to live together in the pond area.
During the winter seasons and late autumn, you will need to be extra careful about moving around in the pond area. This is the time when newts will be burrowing to hibernate throughout the winter, and if you are not careful, you could disturb them during hibernation, which can result in poor health and death.
If you are worried about the newts not finding your pond, you shouldn’t worry too much about that. As long as you are in an area where newts naturally occur, there’s a good chance that they will find your pond and make their homes there.
Newts are notorious for being drawn to natural and manmade environments alike as long as they appear to be sustainable for the newts. As long as there is food, a place to lay eggs, and safe areas to hibernate through the winter months, then there’s a very good chance that you will soon be having newts in your pond.
Newts are relatively independent animals, meaning that you won’t need to do much for them to try and provide a comfortable habitat. This also means that you don’t need to interact with them all that much to make their homes as suitable as possible and for them to naturally find the location.
I have a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering. When I’m not constructing or remodeling X-Ray Rooms, Cardiovascular Labs, and Pharmacies, I’m at home with my wife, two daughters and a dog. Outside of family, I love grilling and barbequing on my Big Green Egg and working on projects around the house. Growing up, I had pet dogs, cats, deer, sugar gliders, chinchillas, a bird, chickens, fish, and a goat.