Pond vs Lake – Difference and Comparison

What is Pond?

A pond is a natural or manufactured body of water that covers a small area of land and is not very deep. It does not consist of flowing water. It can also be considered a small dam as it reserves a small amount of water. The quality of water in the pond depends on the source from where the water comes. Some ponds may have clean and fresh water, whereas others might have dirty or contaminated water.

The size of ponds varies from small to big. But ponds are always more minor compared to lakes and other water bodies. They may be the size of a small rainwater puddle or roughly 150 square feet. Ponds can be temporary or permanent (existing year-round). Ponds also have different types based on their purpose and function. These include fish ponds, wildlife ponds, swimming ponds, and mirror ponds.

Water ponds can be formed from several sources, and these sources include groundwater, surface inflows, and surface runoff. If the pond water is clean, it serves as a home to many animals, and they include snails, worms, fish, frogs, plants, and other insects.

What is Lake?                                                                             

A lake is a large water body bordered by land on all sides. The size and depth of a lake are relatively large compared to a pond, whereas it is smaller than a river. The average length of a lake is 1 acre with a depth of more than 10 meters. These water bodies can contain freshwater or polluted and dirty water based on their location and environment.

 Based on the way water leaves the lake, it can be divided into two categories. The open lakes and closed lakes. Open lakes (also known as exorheic) are where the water escapes from a water outlet to a river. On the other hand, closed lakes (also known as endorheic basins) are where the water escapes only through evaporation or seepage into the ground.

 The lakes are formed due to water accumulation from rain, streams, or melting ice. The stored water is immobile, but some may have flowing water. The open lakes have fresh water and serve as a habitat for several animals and insects. These include beavers, otters, ducks, frogs, fish, birds, turtles, and snakes.

Difference Between Pond and Lake

  1. Ponds are relatively smaller than lakes, whereas lakes are smaller water bodies in comparison with rivers.
  2. The average size of a pond is 150 square feet, whereas the average size of a lake is 43560 square feet (1 acre.)
  3. Ponds can be both temporarily and permanently formed, whereas lakes are formed on a temporary basis.
  4. Ponds are formed from rainwater and surface runoff, whereas lakes are formed from rainwater and melting ice.
  5. Ponds are habitats for small animals like frogs and snakes, whereas lakes are habitats for large animals like otters and beavers.

Comparison Between Pond and Lake

Parameters of ComparisonPondLake
MeaningWater Body on a Small Area of LandLarge Water Body, Bordered by Land
Average Size150 Square Ft43560 Square Ft
TypesNatural & Artificial PondsOpen & Closed Lakes
SourcesSurface Runoff & RainRain & Melting Ice
HabitatSmall AnimalsLarge Animals


  1. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=JGlz_AWQAWIC&oi=fnd&pg=PA1&dq=pond+and+lakes&ots=woZsuwkIMF&sig=COCBMMvKrDrMn726XGUWgxL2cWM
  2. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/environmental-conservation/article/environmental-issues-in-lakes-and-ponds-current-state-and-perspectives/7C2BD1F51BFB646218D5C4642B2BE831