Can You Keep Turtles in a Koi Pond?

If you have spent a lot of time on money on creating your dream pond in your garden you might be wondering can I put turtles in a koi pond?

Turtles can be kept in a koi pond providing that they are not a aggressive predatory species and they do not grow to a large size once adults.

Visually having some small turtles sun bathing on a piece of floating wood or on a small rock island can look amazing as your koi swim calmly by underneath.


There are a number of risks of adding turtles into a koi fish pond and you really need to weigh them up before you make any rash decisions.

It takes a lot of time and effort to create a thriving koi fish pond so please do not make the decision on a whim.

Also Read: Can Koi and Goldfish Live Together?

Turtles in Koi Ponds

You can keep turtles in a koi pond but they will need to be a small species that are not aggressive predators.

The main risk to you koi are that your turtles will eat or attack them and that they may introduce some nasty diseases that may affect the health of your koi and of the pond in general.

Some species of turtles are very aggressive predators and they will feed on small fish and may well attack larger fish out of instinct even if they are well fed by you.

If a turtle is to attack your koi it may not kill it but the injuries from it will and having a koi swimming around in your pond for several days with an infected wound could put your other fish at risk of similar infection.

Large turtles will also produce a lot of waste as fecal matter into your pond water so you will need to either try and clean it up manually or have a very robust filtration system.

Koi tend to like very clean water and one way to make sure that they live a long and healthy life is that your water quality remains high all of the time.

Turtles will also eat plants and other vegetation so if you have stocked you koi pond with lilies they might well be at risk of been eaten.

Also Read: Do Koi Eat Other Fish?

You also need to be aware that in some states it is illegal to introduce non-native species of turtles into the state, even if it is on your private property that is well fenced off.

You will need to weigh up all of the above if you want to keep koi and turtles together.