Make a mini wildlife pond

Love watching wildlife? Why not ask your grown-ups to help you make a pond at home or school? You don’t need much space and it’s easier than you think! Even a small pond attracts a wide range of species.

Before you get started

What you will need

  • A clean container without holes – like a washing-up bowl, a big plant pot, a bucket or even an old sink!
  • Rainwater, or tap water that’s been standing outside for a few days
  • Some gravel, pebbles and rocks
  • A few pond plants. These are available from most garden centres. Flowering rush, marsh marigolds and hornwort are all good choices
  • Branches and planks of wood



Dig a hole

Start off by picking a shady spot and digging a big hole for your container. Here, you can see kids from Devonshire Academy at the RSPCA’s Birmingham Education Centre doing the same.

Add your container

Make sure your hole is just deep and wide enough for your container and pack it into the earth. The kids here are using a washing-up bowl.

Add hiding places

Add in a layer of gravel, and a few stones and pebbles, so aquatic animals have places to hide. 

Build a slope

Make a pile of rocks and bricks to form a slope, from the bottom of the container to the top. This will help small animals (like hedgehogs) climb out if they fall in. Branches and planks make good safety ramps too. 

Add plants

Add in any pond-friendly plants.

Fill with rainwater

Fill your container with rainwater, and wait!


It might take a few weeks until you see signs of life – adding some pond-friendly plants can help. Don’t be tempted to move animals from other ponds to yours. Just sit back, wait, and wildlife will soon start to move in!

How to look after your pond

  • Top it up with rainwater if the levels look low.
  • Make sure the underwater slope is still standing and check the safety ramps are still there.
  • Scoop any rotting plants off the surface of the water. Leave them by the edge of the pond for a few days, so any small animals can escape.

Share your creations

If you had fun with this project, we’d love to see the end results! Send us a picture of your finished craft for a chance to appear on our online gallery.