Climate-induced hazards are adversely affecting the pond ecosystems in Bangladesh. Most of the poor communities collect water from isolated ponds for drinking and other domestic needs. This paper explores how the small pond ecosystems and associated livelihoods of the coastal communities are vulnerable and argues that the pond ecosystem can be a potential resource base for community based adaptation in the coastal regions of Bangladesh. A set of quantitative and qualitative tools were applied to 309 households across five villages. The study showed that 96% of the respondents are dependent on pond water for drinking. More than 50% households expressed that temperature, rainfall variations and salinity intrusion, directly and indirectly, affect the pond water. Physical parameter values of temperature, pH and salinity from the ponds showed changes across different seasons. Drinking water scarcity during pre-monsoon (March–May), winter (Dec–Feb), disaster and immediate post-disaster period among the communities is high. Salinity intrusion and surface runoff caused by excessive rainfall in short periods also cause deterioration in the quality of pond water. However, successful examples of pond water usage emerged through the discussions, especially during a post-disaster crisis, which strengthens the idea that ponds could be a resource base for community-based adaptation in the coast of Bangladesh.

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