Which Goldfish Are Suitable for Garden Ponds?

fish for outdoor ponds

2 of the types that live happily in ponds are Comets and Fantails

If you’re planning a pond it’s important to know which varieties of goldfish are ideal fish for ponds.


The different varieties each come with their own characteristics and challenges. Understanding the challenges will make a big difference in the decision making process and set your pond up for success.

There are so many types of goldfish it can be difficult to choose which goldfish to take home. You may like the most colorful or prettiest but it’s helpful to research the different varieties to understand the major differences.


Goldfish are suited to smaller garden ponds and water gardens from 50 – 500 gallons. They are easy to look after and hardy making them a perfect choice. 

Fantail goldfish 

  • It has a short body with a high dorsal fin
  • The colors may vary
  • The fantail is perfect for an outdoor pond. It can survive year round as long as the water is deep enough to ensure a warm area is left at the bottom of the pond

Common goldfish 

  • This fish is generally orange and yellow
  • The common goldfish is easy to take care of and is a very social pet
  • This fish is one of the most popular

Comet goldfish 

  • These are red-orange and yellow
  • They have a very long body and require plenty of room to swim
  • Comets make good pond fish

Black Moor

  • These were given their name because originally they were always black. Other colors are now available
  • Some of the Black Moors have a telescopic eye that protrudes out of the head. Others have a normal eye

These are not well suited to the outdoor pond or any fish tank with lots of decorations. They tend to have poor vision making it hard for them to see predators outdoors and sharp objects indoors

  • They also have difficulty finding their food and may not be the best goldfish for all aquariums



  • This fish has a short body with no dorsal fin
  • It’s a very colorful goldfish

The lionhead is best for an indoor aquarium

Bubble eye goldfish

  • A small fancy type of goldfish
  • The eyes on the fish are almost entirely surrounded by a fluid-filled sac.

The eyes can easily become damaged, so it’s best to place the bubble eye in a tank of their own

There are so many more types of goldfish that can be excellent additions to any home. It really comes down to personal choice and if you’re  looking for aquarium or pond fish.


Koi can grow quite large and so require more water, ponds over 500 gallons as a guide. Koi ponds are usually deeper. 


These fish like ‘digging’ in the soil of submerged plants and can make quite a mess. You can wrap netting over the top of pots to stop the ‘digging’. Alternatively put about 1″of pea gravel and larger river stones on top of the gravel which will stop them getting to the soil.


Koi and goldfish mix well and so you can have both in your pond.

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