Pond (body of water)

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Fish pond near Wilburgstetten in Middle Franconia

A pond (from Latin vivarium "living container for animals") is a small perennial still water .

The Limnology defines the pond and durable flat waters without a deep layer as for lakes is typical. A pond can therefore potentially be populated everywhere by higher water plants and does not show any stable stratification. According to ÖNORM M 6231, for example, a pond is characterized as a persistent stagnant body of water in which the light penetrates to the bottom of the water and enables green plants to grow. The Austrian Ministry of Life defines a pond as "naturally or artificially created perennial (year-round) still water without a low-light deep zone, the water level of which cannot be regulated."

Shallow bodies of water that have been artificially created and have at least one inflow and an adjustable outflow are (also) referred to as ponds . Shallow waters that only carry water temporarily are called pools .

The word Weiher is native to southern Germany, Austria and Switzerland and describes shallow still waters there - usually artificially created - with a larger extent. Above all, still waters near aristocratic residences and castles (castle ponds), but in stately farms or in or near villages (village ponds) are often directly or indirectly part of gardens and also have an important aesthetic function. Such shallow waters are usually not long-lived, but silt up if they are not regularly deepened.

In northern Germany, large shallow waters are often referred to as the sea (e.g. Steinhuder Meer ). Smaller lakes, especially in northeastern Germany, are often referred to as Pfuhl (Puhl), e.g. B. the Schleipfuhl in Berlin or the 4 hectare Sülzpfuhl near Bützow .

Small-scale, shallow bodies of water are also known as Laken (Laaken) or lakes in northern Germany, often with different meanings . In contrast, sheets in the Danzig Lowlands are shallow trenches that were used for drainage or for the transport of goods. The equivalent in Polish is Łacha . Even in the southern German-speaking area, shallow waters are referred to as lakes when they are very large ; the best known example of this is the only up to 1.9 m deep Lake Neusiedl , which according to the limnological definition is actually a (very extensive) pond and not a "real" lake.

Ponds (such as many fish ponds) have few aesthetic requirements, they are essentially useful ponds. In addition to the aesthetics, u. U. also the regular (annual or biennial) draining of ponds in order to easily get to the fish harvest in late autumn. Ponds, on the other hand, have an important aesthetic function, they are often extended parts of the garden and are closely related to aristocratic residences (or stately farm estates); they are usually not drained regularly.

In colloquial language, the use of the term pond is blurred with that of the pond or with other names.

The heather pond is a special type of pond .


  • Richard Pott, Dominique Remy: Inland waters - Central European ecosystems. ISBN 3-8001-3157-9 .

Web links

Wiktionary: Weiher  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. Guideline for the ecological examination and assessment of standing waters . ÖNORM M 6231: 2001 10 01
  2. Federal Office for Water Management ( Memento from February 15, 2017 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 574 kB) from 2011, accessed on August 30, 2013