Creating and managing ponds is an easy and highly effective way to tackle biodiversity loss and climate change at a local and national level. Ponds are a low-cost and straightforward tool to give individuals, families and communities a great way to protect and improve their local environment. An Taisce Legacy4LIFE Ponds for Biodiversity team are excited to announce the publication of their second Ponds pamphlet/poster. It contains four A4 pages on How to Create and Manage a Pond for Wildlife. It also folds out into a spectacular A2 poster, which outlines key steps on how to create and manage ponds for wildlife, beautifully illustrated by talented children’s book illustrator Brian Fitzgerald. It is now available to download and print freely from our webpage.

Team Researcher Francesca Loughran says: 

We created this Pond Creation and Management pamphlet with the intention of providing a clear and comprehensive guide for anyone that is considering making a pond themselves! 

The Ponds for Biodiversity team hopes that the guidance of this new pamphlet will further encourage pond creation and management nationally. Increased local level pond creation supports habitats and refuges for many of Ireland’s wildlife including plants, mammals, birds, amphibians and a host of macroinvertebrates, creating the potential for a wider abundance and comeback of many freshwater species and other forms of biodiversity. Ponds have demonstrated to host more biodiversity that rivers and lakes, supporting an impressive two thirds of freshwater species, including some that are categorised as threatened on the IUCN red list for Ireland. 

The increased uptake of pond creation and management across the country will help to tackle Irelands water quality status issues.  


Aoife O'Rourke: Aoife is a pond development officer and the ponds team lead. A conservation ecologist with a BSc in Environmental Biology, an MSc in Biodiversity and Conservation and a Research MSc in plant-pollinator interactions of fixed dune ecosystems, she brings experience and skills from the research, ecological consultancy, and environmental NGO sectors of Ireland and the UK. Aoife has a passion for outreach and community engagement and enjoys connecting people with nature.  

Francesca Loughran: Francesca is an agricultural and ponds researcher, working part time on both the ‘Advancing Farm to Fork’ and ‘Ponds for Biodiversity’ projects. With a BSc in Animal Conservation Science and an MSc in Environmental Policy, she is well placed to draw on her broad knowledge across the spheres of biodiversity, environment, and policy, and communicate this through her research skills. Fran is also a member of the An Taisce Climate Change Committee and has previously worked with the Advocacy unit in the area of Climate Policy. 

Rob Gandola: Rob is a herpetologist, wildlife consultant and occasional TV presenter. 

Brian Fitzgerald: Brian is a Dublin based illustrator of children’s books. 

Notes for Editor: 

An Taisce 

Legacy4LIFE programme 

Ponds for Biodiversity Project 

Illustrator Brian Fitzgerald 


About the Legacy4LIFE programme: 

Legacy4LIFE is a 2-year programme which aims to develop community-based supports for Ireland’s natural environment, with a focus 󠅲on biodiversity enhancement, environmental protection and climate mitigation.  

The €0.5m programme is one of two EU Life Projects awarded in the Republic of Ireland in 2021, and is co-funded by the EU Life Programme (the EU’s funding instrument for the environment and climate action), the European Climate Foundation, the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, and the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications. 

The Legacy4LIFE programme consists of three distinct projects: 


Ponds for Biodiversity 

Advancing Farm-to-Fork 

Green Communities - Development of a Low Carbon Town Plan 


Ponds for Biodiversity Objectives: 

To establish a network of local authorities and other bodies who understand the value of ponds and commit to protecting/creating ponds on public lands. 

To create a set of demonstration sites across Ireland which demonstrate to practitioners and policy makers how ponds can help to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change. 

To ascertain the status of recent pond initiatives. 

To establish an ‘adopt a pond’ network of citizen scientists/community groups to monitor and manage the newly created ponds, or existing ponds. Information to be fed back to the National Biodiversity Centre 

To disseminate the project’s results to policy makers, practitioners and other stakeholders. 

To engage individuals to establish ponds in their gardens, with clear guidance and tips, and a portal to enter their pond location. 

To build capacity within Ireland for pond expertise, and operators skilled in pond creation. 


For more information: 

Aoife O’Rourke 

Ponds for Biodiversity Team Lead 

[email protected] 


Francesca Loughran 

Ponds for Biodiversity Researcher 

[email protected]