The goal in water gardens today is the creation of a naturally balanced, low maintenance aquatic ecosystem that allows water gardeners more relaxation time by their aquatic paradise, and less time worrying about maintenance.
In biological terms, a community or ecosystem can be defined as plants and animals interacting with one another in the sharing of available resources and restraints in a defined area. An ecosystem encompasses all the parts of this environment, including the living plants and animals, water, air, and the sun's energy. Backyard ponds can function as ecosystems because they play host to a total interrelationship of all organisms in the environment - birds, fish, frogs, plants, and many microscopic organisms. These ponds not only create a natural ecosystem in their defined environment, but they also fit into the community or life cycle of not just one backyard, but of the entire ecological region.
We should remember that our backyard water features are not only enjoyable for us, but also helpful to the well being and functioning of our environment. Do you want your pond to be more diverse? Given a little time and a proper plant selection in and around your pond, you can create a very diverse ecosystem in your yard. Just remember to keep it simple and, with patience, your pond will mature over the years into a beautiful and functioning part of nature.
One pond in one backyard may not seem very important, but when you have a thousand similar backyard ecosystems functioning simultaneously, there truly is a positive impact being made on the environment. These water features help provide an oasis for creatures whose natural habitat have been replaced by development - birds, frogs, toads, newts, and salamanders, and many others whose numbers have been declining sharply for many years now.
So at a grassroots level, as the hobby of water gardening grows, there are additional habitats and diversity being added to our stressed suburban environments.