Pool to Pond


Create a haven for plants and wildlife

Join more than 50 Pool to Pond converts and create an eco-friendly, cost-effective alternative to a conventional swimming pool. We have been assisting residents to convert their pools since 2007 by supplying native fish, aquatic plants and technical advice.

*Please note converting to a pond does not negate your obligations under The Swimming Pools Act 1992 which requires private swimming pool owners to ensure that their pool is at all times, surrounded by a child resistant barrier that separates the swimming pool from the dwelling on the property as well as any public or private place adjoining the property.

Why convert your pool?

  • It is essentially a rainwater tank without a lid.
  • Provide water for garden irrigation.
  • Promote biodiversity in your own backyard.
  • Save up to $1,000 pa on your electricity bills with no pump/filter needed.
  • Reduce toxic pool chemicals in your home.
  • You can still swim in the water! It's well within government-mandated recreational standards.
  • Maintaining a pond is not expensive or time-consuming.
  • The conversion is reversible.

Saving our local species

Backyard habitats are crucial for the movement of native animals to find resources, especially as urban sprawl impacts their habitat. Converted pools provide habitat for a range of fauna species, including birds, reptiles, amphibians, and as we recently discovered, microbats! Since 2017, Council have been monitoring microbats throughout Ku-ring-gai, including residential backyards, creeks, bushland sites and golf courses. A total of 14 species have been detected so far, with converted pool sites supporting a high diversity and activity of microbats including some of our more rare and threatened species.

Download the 2019 report here. (pdf. 2MB)

Watch online

Watch a short YouTube video on successful pool to pond conversions on our own Envirotube channel.

Frequently asked questions

Are mosquitoes a problem?

No. Approximately 60 mosquito species live in the Sydney area, three to four of which are considered pests. These three to four species prefer temporary water sources and dislike living in depths greater than 30cm. These mosquitoes are typically found in saucers under pot plants. 

Will my water smell?

Pond odour has not been raised as an issue with any of our conversions. The surface area of a pool is large enough to ensure that the water is relatively oxygenated. 

Is the water safe?

A study facilitated by a researcher at the University of Western Sydney has shown that the water in converted ponds meets Australian recreational water guidelines. The water is "clean" enough to swim in provided that animals such as ducks are not present in large numbers, as that can lead to faecal coliform contamination. However, the water standard of converted pools does not meet drinking water guidelines.  

Will a pond damage my pump and filter?

Pumps and filters are manufactured to last for approximately eight years and may need to be replaced if the pond is converted back into a swimming pool.  Algae will not cause any problems for your pool equipment.  

Purchase plants for your pond

Visit the Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Garden Nursery for a full range of water plants suitable for starting your Pool to Pond conversion.

Contact us

Please email us if you are a Ku-ring-gai resident wanting to find out more about converting your pool. Pool to Pond is a part of Ku-ring-gai Council’s WildThings program, which also includes our successful native bees program.

Related documents

Pool to Pond - Plants and Fish brochure - English language (pdf. 1MB)

Pool to Pond flyer-English language (pdf. 318KB)

Pool to Pond flyer-Chinese language (pdf. 1MB)

Pool to Pond flyer-Korean language (pdf. 765KB)

Watch a short YouTube video on successful pool to pond conversions

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