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11 Simple Tips to Keep Ducks Out of Your Pool

Ducks in a swimming pool

Ducks in a swimming pool

Ducks in your pool may not be a universal problem, but once you’ve had ducks in your pool, you know it’s challenging to get rid of them. You want to try to do everything you can to keep them from getting there in the first place. While ducks are more likely to take up in an inground pool, they can also land in an above-ground pool.

If you live in an area prone to duck invasions, we are going to give you some tips and tricks to help you prevent the ducks from making a home in your pool. Wherever possible, we will try to supply you with an example product, but these products are just examples. Similar products will work just as well in most cases.

Keep reading while we review these 11 simple ways to keep ducks out of your pool.

How to Keep Ducks Out of Your Pool (11 Tips):

1. Have a Dog

If you like pets and enjoy the company of a dog, this can be the best way to keep ducks from getting into your pool. However, a dog quickly turns into a family member and can be quite expensive to feed, so it is not something you are going to get just to keep away ducks.

One thing you have to be careful about using dogs to control ducks is that some dogs don’t chase ducks, nor will they bark at them if they land in your pool. If you intend to use a dog to keep ducks away, you’ll need to use a hunting dog such as an Airedale Terrier.

dog in pool
Image By: 825545, Pixabay

2. Remove Bird Feeders

We highly recommend bird feeders when you need to remove bugs from your yard, but if you have a problem with ducks, you’ll need to remove them. Any birdseed or environment inviting to birds will look like a friendly place for ducks, including a nice clean pool, and passing ducks may have found a new home.

bird feeders
Image Credit: nickfish03, Pixabay

3. Tall Plants

Ducks don’t like enclosed areas where they can’t see incoming predators. Planting tall bushes and other shrubberies can help keep ducks at bay. The downside to using plants and bushes around your pool is that they will tend to bring bugs, which can also wind up in your pool water. In some cases, plastic trees or plants can do the job.

Nearly Natural

4. Pool Toys

Ducks are very afraid of predators and easily fooled. Quite often, a generic float in the shape of an alligator or some monster is more than enough to scare the ducks away. Ducks are also very afraid of large eyes, so any pool float or raft that depicts large eyes will also help keep ducks away. Bigger floats will work better, and we recommend the largest and/or most realistic alligator or eyeball you can find.

Homarden Floating Crocodile Head Water Decoy

5. Scarecrow

A scarecrow is very similar to the pool toy idea and also uses the duck’s overwhelming fear against them. We don’t use a traditional scarecrow, though. Plastic owls seem to work best as an owl is a natural predator of the duck. Placing one of these owls near your pool will accent your yard as well as keep the ducks away.

Gardaner Owl Decoy Rotating Head Owl

6. Solar Cover

A solar cover will cover the water, and it will not look as inviting to the ducks. You may or may not enjoy the added benefit of the increased water temperature in your pool, but one downside to the solar cover is that it uses up chlorine fast, and can contribute to algae growth, especially in the warmest water directly below the solar cover. Algae growth will lead to cloudy water.

Sun2Solar Blue

7. Robot Vacuum

Robot vacuums are also known as automatic pool vacuums, and these can be a great way to keep ducks out of your water. The movement of the robot vacuum scares the ducks while keeping your pool cleaner at the same time. The downside to using the robot vacuum is that some models cause the pool’s filter system to work less effectively while it’s working.

Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus

8. Motion Activated Sprinkler

Motion-activated sprinkler systems are another great way to scare away ducks before they make themselves comfortable. This device will come on automatically when it senses movement in your yard. Since ducks hate sudden movements, they will almost certainly fly away as soon as the water starts.

The downside to using motion-activated sprinklers is that many other things besides ducks can start them, and this could lead to a lot of wasted water. If you spread too much water around, it can get expensive and can also increase the bug population in your yard.

9. Motion Activated Noise

Another idea that is similar to the motion-activated sprinkler system is the motion-activated ultrasonic sound emitter. When triggered by nearby movement, these devices emit a loud high-pitched sound that is inaudible to humans but will scare away most animals, including ducks. These devices are cheaper to run than a water sprinkler and less wasteful. However, motion-activated ultrasonic devices still suffer from being able to be set off by many things other than ducks. Other birds, falling leaves, pets, butterflies, opening and closing doors, and walking through the yard will also set off these noisemakers. The ultrasonic noise they create is very loud for dogs and cats and may scare them and can even change their behavior. Another downside to this device is that since we can’t hear the sound it produces, we don’t know if it’s working unless nearby animals tell us.

For this purpose, we recommend the ZOVENCHI Animal Repeller with Ultrasonic Sound Motion Sensor

ZOVENCHI Animal Repeller

10. Bird Netting

Bird netting is a great way to prevent ducks and other birds from getting into the water in your pool. Bird netting is reasonably inexpensive and usually comes in a large roll that you can place over the pool. The mesh is wide enough to allow plenty of light to shine through to the water, but the ducks and other birds will see it and not want to get tangled. This netting can also help reduce the number of leaves and twigs that fall into the water.

bird netting, bestfurnitures

11. Bird Repelling Chemicals

Using chemicals should only ever be a last resort. You never know where the chemicals will end up, and you don’t want them in your pool or your garden. Some chemicals can harm your pets as well, so always do plenty of research before choosing a brand and only use I when all other tactics have failed. Some chemicals have proven very effective at keeping ducks away and could be the answer after exhausting all other possibilities.


If you follow these eleven tips, we are confident that you will be successful in keeping ducks out of your pool permanently. We recommend the owl, scary pool toys, and the netting over the pool. These items are affordable and should be more than enough to get the job done. If you still notice ducks around your pool after that, we recommend moving on to the motion-activated devices, the dog, and the automatic pool vacuum. Only after they fail do we endorse the other steps.

It’s important to remember that the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 states that when birds are migrating, you are not allowed to shoot or harm them. You also cannot disturb, relocate, or destroy any nests or eggs that belong to them. All you can do is try to prevent them from landing in your pool.

We hope that this guide has given you a few new ideas to try. If you have found it helpful and informative, please share these 11 simple ways to keep ducks out of your pool on Facebook and Twitter.

Featured Image Credit: John Liu on Flickr


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