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#476223 - 07/17/17 10:29 AM Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill
Chris2434 Offline


Registered: 06/26/17
Posts: 5
Loc: North Central Illinois
So I'm currently doing a complete renovation on my pond. When completed the pond will be about a half acre and averaging about 12' in depth.
I'm just doing some research ahead of time and can't really decide whether I want to go with hybrids or bluegill/red ears. I have read that in a small pond like this hybrids would be ideal, though imcon erned about the reproduction. Some reading has led me to see the hat win hybrids it is a common practice to kill off pond every 3-5 years to get rid of any second order third generations, don't really want to go through all that.
On top of the gills I would like to put in a dozen or so channel cats and stock largemouth bass according pond size stocking suggestions. I will more than likely be pellet feeding these fish as well. The primary goal of the pond is for large gills and an occasional bass or cat.
I realize this is a very debated topic but would like to hear some incite on my personal pond conditions. Any questions please let me know, thank you ahead of time.

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#476224 - 07/17/17 10:31 AM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
Chris2434 Offline


Registered: 06/26/17
Posts: 5
Loc: North Central Illinois
Sorry also wanted to add that the pond will also have bottom aeration

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#476228 - 07/17/17 11:10 AM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
peachgrower Online   content


Registered: 07/02/16
Posts: 213
Loc: SW Arkansas
Welcome!! You are in the right place!! If you are going to stock LMB and CC I would go with BG and RES. The HBG will not build your forage base like the other two. They reproduce but mostly have male offspring so reproduction will be poor. Most people use them when they want BG but do not want to have to control the population with a predator like the LMB.

For your large gills you will want to have alot of smaller LMB, you'll have to keep the larger LMB caught out because they will eat your larger BG.

The experts will chime in soon on the specifics, but I have learned this much from being here. lol I wished I would have found this play in the beginning like you have. READ READ READ READ...then READ some more and do what the experts say and you'll have an AWESOME pond!

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#476237 - 07/17/17 12:11 PM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
RC51 Online   content
Ambassador
Lunker

Registered: 07/06/09
Posts: 4083
Loc: Arkansas
Hey Chris Welcome and congrats on the pond!!

I have about exactly what you want except the CC. I wouldn't put CC in my pond but that's just me can't stand em they get to big stir stuff up and eat a truck if they can find it. lol

I have LMB, CNBG/BG and RES and a few HSB. My pond has done great. I can actually say at the moment I have the best of both worlds. I have several 10 inch BG and I have LMB and HSB that range anywhere from 1 pound to 5 pounds. Keep in mind though like Peach said above your larger LMB can eat decent sized BG so you may have some compromise there but I have never ran out of BG yet..lol.

You definitely want to go with regular BG not hybrids if your gonna have LMB and CC.

My LMB average around 15 to 17 inches and they are a blast to catch and still not quite big enough to eat my larger gills.

Before you put anything in that pond though you better get some minnows in there and your BG, and RES for a while and let them spawn for the summer. Then I would wait and put your Cc and Bass in the next spring. Be patient on this and you will be happy you were!! Good Luck and have fun with it!!

RC


Edited by RC51 (07/17/17 12:15 PM)
_________________________
You don't just wake up great one day. That's not the way it works. What you get out of life is directly what you put into it. So if you think you can cut corners skip workouts and deny your body the fuel it needs think again! We've got work to do!!

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#476252 - 07/17/17 02:29 PM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
sprkplug Online   content
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Registered: 06/02/08
Posts: 6755
Loc: Freedom, Indiana
I will take the opposite approach. HBG will do very well in a small pond, provided you're willing to restock as necessary and feed. You will not need to drain and kill off, provided you stock smaller LMB, and keep cover to a minimum. This combination will provide great fishing, without worry of BG stunting. Some of the LMB will likely take to pellets, and you might be surprised to learn how well they will grow.....especially since they will be preying on yoy BG AND LMB.

I might also add RES and a handful of HSB.
_________________________
"Forget pounds and ounces, I'm figuring displacement!"

If we accept that: MBG(+)FGSF(=)HBG(F1)
And we surmise that: BG(>)HBG(F1) while GSF(<)HBG(F1)
Would it hold true that: HBG(F1)(+)AM500(x)q.d.(=)1.5lbGRWT?
PB answer: It depends.

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#476254 - 07/17/17 02:47 PM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 11780
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
I tend to agree with Sprkplug providing you agree to add some HBG every couple years. Also if it were my pond I would make sure I get pellet trained LMB that are bigger than 2"-3" preferably 4"-6" who will be more prone to resume eating pellets when stocked. Instead of the CC, I would add a few HSB as mentioned by Spark. The initial LMB will eat pellets and small HBG well but their offspring will feed more like regular LMB eating live foods. In later years these generations of "natural" LMB offspring will be your main controllers of the small HBG offspring. If you really like how the pellet LMB perform you can easily add some of them as the original stockers get older. Again, if it were my pond I would add several HSB (8-10) as bonus fish instead of CC. Numbers of bonus fish depend on how many bass you stock per acre basis. However, you could split the several HSB numbers in half and use 50:50 HSB & CC. As the pond progresses and you develop favorite fish you can restock them as needed to replace those harvested or that die. What you don't see at feeding time is an indication they might not be present and somehow died?

Keep in mind you always have the option after several years to add regular BG, whose offspring will normally outpace those of the HBG. Then the pond will be more BG than HBG especially if you discontinue stocking more HBG.


Edited by Bill Cody (07/17/17 02:54 PM)
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#476263 - 07/17/17 03:48 PM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
Quarter Acre Online   content


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 280
Loc: West Central Missouri
Chris, I am in the same dilemma, "To hybrid or not to hybrid." I will not be stocking until next year. I am allowing the FHM, crawdads, and vegetation to get established first which gives me some time to make the decision. It's seems like a real buggar to figure out which way to go. I will likely not have aeration for the first year. I tend to lean more to having large BG/HBG than going for great big LMB/HSB.

My amateur take on the hybrid pros/cons subject is something like...

Hybrid Pros: Less concern for overpopulations and typically come pellet trained. If you are an occasional fisher and more of a catch and release guy like me, overpopulation becomes more of a concern. I will not find my pond as enjoyable if I feel like I have to go fishing all the time to remove/cull certain size classes to manage the BOW. Which would mean a lot more fish cleaning and/or sacrifices to the coons.

Hybrid Cons: Probably need a strong supplemental feeding program as spawning is reduced. You need to monitor for declines in populations and counter act with ladder stocking. HSB do not take kindly to being caught during the heat of the summer and often die from the stress. I appears that the genetics of future HBG generations get muddy as time passes.

I personally am leaning towards HBG/RES/LMB/HSB and maybe a couple albino cats just for fun at feeding time to see something different.

I think my biggest obstacle is convincing myself that I will be willing to hand feed the fish regularly or buck up and buy the expensive/reliable auto feeder.

I also feel like the HSB will be able to grow larger as their mouth gap is not near as big as the LMG. With a large BG pond goal, it is said to be important to cull any LMB at or around the 14" mark so that they don't eat the larger BG/HBG. The HSB should be able to get much larger than the 14" length since their mouths are smaller. This allows for the bass fisherman in me to satisfied knowing there could be some BIG fish to catch occasionally.

Now with that said, RC seems to be getting all the stars to align in his pond. BIG BG LMB and HSB...Go RC!
_________________________
Fish on!,
Noel
1/4 Acre Pond - FHM, Spring Peepers, Bull, Tree, and Leopard Frogs, Toads, tons of tadpoles, and some water snakes frown

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#476269 - 07/17/17 04:30 PM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
RC51 Online   content
Ambassador
Lunker

Registered: 07/06/09
Posts: 4083
Loc: Arkansas
LOL yeah well you know what they say. "It All Depends" One thing different on my end is that my pond is 1 acre not a half acre so that may make a big difference. Having more room to roam and more cover. So far though it's been working for me.... I really watch my RW's though on my LMB and cull when needed. Either way would work for Chris or for your Quarter just a matter of knowing what you have and how to manage what you got.

I have now finally noticed that I seem to be having a issue after about 5 years with my BG in the 5 to 7 inch range. I think that's from having the larger bass now and a few too many of them. So I have already started harvesting / adjusting some for it.

RC


Edited by RC51 (07/17/17 04:32 PM)
_________________________
You don't just wake up great one day. That's not the way it works. What you get out of life is directly what you put into it. So if you think you can cut corners skip workouts and deny your body the fuel it needs think again! We've got work to do!!

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#476291 - 07/18/17 08:40 AM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
Chris2434 Offline


Registered: 06/26/17
Posts: 5
Loc: North Central Illinois
Hey guys, awesome info here. I just wanted to add that this will be a "harvested" pond. I would love for the kids to be able to hook into a few nice large fish. But at the same time I would like to be able to throw a few in the fryer on some weekends. I don't have any problem restocking when necessary and plan to put some structures or cribs at the bottom for cover. The one big thing that I didn't mention was that we had a combination of HBG, LGM, and CC inthe pond before but had the problem of a lot of small gills over populating the pond.
I've never even considered putting in Hybrid stripper, but I really would like to get CC in there pretty much to raise and harvest.

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#476294 - 07/18/17 09:15 AM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
sprkplug Online   content
Ambassador
Lunker

Registered: 06/02/08
Posts: 6755
Loc: Freedom, Indiana
If HBG are part of the plan, I would be cautious about adding cover, the whole point is to do everything possible to eliminate recruitment. Adding cover is contrary to that goal.

Utilizing HBG successfully requires a non traditional mindset and management strategy
_________________________
"Forget pounds and ounces, I'm figuring displacement!"

If we accept that: MBG(+)FGSF(=)HBG(F1)
And we surmise that: BG(>)HBG(F1) while GSF(<)HBG(F1)
Would it hold true that: HBG(F1)(+)AM500(x)q.d.(=)1.5lbGRWT?
PB answer: It depends.

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#476304 - 07/18/17 11:01 AM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
ewest Online   content
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014

Lunker

Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 18738
Loc: Miss.
There are a number of approaches to using HBG and as sprkplug states they require non-traditional thought processes. Keep in mind that HBG are more aggressive at biting (catchability) so mgt for that idea. HBG can be fished out easily.
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#476367 - Yesterday at 10:02 AM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
Chris2434 Offline


Registered: 06/26/17
Posts: 5
Loc: North Central Illinois
Ok, so let's say that I didn't put in any additional coverage, went with HBG, LMB, and CC. Would FHM and any offspring of the HBG be enough forage, since I have two predators.
What I am seeing is that this would be the main concern with not having enough offspring from the HBG. I would also be doing a pellet regiment for feeding but don't know if the CC and LMB would take to it. I would be purchasing fish through my local county soil and water conservation dept, but I'm not sure if they would be coming pellet trained or not.
If I were to add HSB would that increase my forage amount for the other predators?

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#476371 - Yesterday at 10:23 AM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
CJD Offline


Registered: 08/25/15
Posts: 55
Loc: Fl, USA
Originally Posted By: Chris2434
Ok, so let's say that I didn't put in any additional coverage, went with HBG, LMB, and CC. Would FHM and any offspring of the HBG be enough forage, since I have two predators.
What I am seeing is that this would be the main concern with not having enough offspring from the HBG. I would also be doing a pellet regiment for feeding but don't know if the CC and LMB would take to it. I would be purchasing fish through my local county soil and water conservation dept, but I'm not sure if they would be coming pellet trained or not.
If I were to add HSB would that increase my forage amount for the other predators?


I'm going to say that the FHM/HBG will be decimated in a season or so depending on predator numbers.

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#476382 - Yesterday at 11:52 AM Re: Hybrid Bluegill vs. Bluegill [Re: Chris2434]
Bill Cody Offline
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Field Correspondent

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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 11780
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Chris with your current plan, your LMB, will with the first spawn, strongly outnumber the forage fish and food will become short supply to the point all the LMB sizes will not be getting enough food daily for average growth rates let alone good growth. The first stocking of LMB will decimate the FHM over the period of one summer. Lack of forage fish. Bass growth will "hit the wall".

Reconsider the idea using Soil & Water bass for your pond as it is now planned. Soil & Water bass are cheaply raised and never pellet trained. Take the time and make the effort to find a fish farm that has pellet trained LMB and go get them even if you have to travel a few hours to pick them up. Pellet trained LMB are common in IL; just do some looking and homework. Bass eating pellets will get better than average growth to the point of fast growth when they are eating high protein pellets (40-42% protein). If nice bass are your goal, You will not regret using the pellet trained LMB. This method gives the best of both worlds, great panfish and great fast growing bass while not having to be concerned about lack of forage fish.

We are trying to help you here get a great fishery. Listen to the experienced advice.


Edited by Bill Cody (Yesterday at 11:56 AM)
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