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#485069 - 01/09/18 11:39 AM Cheap and effective large pond managment
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
Pond number one
species
yellow perch,large mouth bass,Bluegill,Pumpkin seed,orange spotted sunfish.

8 acres 20 feet deep rocky bottom with few large weed beds

Problem orange spot sunfish never get bigger than five inches and so many. very small(size wise) large mouth population biggest caught 12 inches biggest seen 16

Would adding more large mouth to change up the genetics be good and also add walleye to help with perch numbers and add hybrid white bass to manage bluegills and add crappie to eat bluegill fry


Second pond
species same as above

12 acers same depth cyrstal clear water lots of thick weeds

Problem over population of blue gills malnutrition perch and very small large mouth bass

Add new genetics of large mouth be good and add hybird stripers and crappies for help thin down bluegills and continue to cull every bluegill under 10 inches


Please let me know thanks

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#485070 - 01/09/18 11:57 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
BrianL Online   content


Registered: 03/31/14
Posts: 765
Loc: Paris, TX
Pond one remove more bass, pond 2 remove more weeds so bass can catch bluegill
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#485074 - 01/09/18 01:34 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1783
Loc: West Michigan
Is orange spot sunfish a red-ear sunfish or RES? There is good discussion on this forum on whether RES can do well in northern climates like yours. I'd love to know how well they do by you and I assume they must over winter without winter kill?

Other things I noted in your post that I would comment on and ask others to comment on is this:

You say you need to add walleye (WE) to eat perch. The LMB should really do a good job in that department, I'm not sure WE can eat more than LMB.

I would suspect that you are right on the edge at 8 acres to be able to control crappie in your size pond. If you have no crappie now you would want to probably not add them yet or read the many posts from the crappie experts.

Also you mention hybrid white bass. Do you mean hybrid striped bass? They would be a great addition if your state allows stocking of them. However their mouth is quite small and they would target the same smaller bluegill that your LMB need to get fat.

Once you have stunted LMB you need to HARVEST, not add more stock. Also you may be predator heavy.

Mr. Lusk, his scenario is ideal for your facebook live talk or a future one. A bigger lake, deeper, rocks and weeds, stunted LMB, do you add forage, add bg, add crappie? take out something? change LMB genetics, add WE, add HSB? All or some of these?

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#485075 - 01/09/18 02:09 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19373
Loc: Miss.
ORANGE SPOTTED SUNFISH OSS
Lepomis humilis




see below pic for RES.


What is the condition of the various species (pics)?


Edited by ewest (01/09/18 02:11 PM)
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#485079 - 01/09/18 03:07 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12398
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Quote:
Problem orange spot sunfish never get bigger than five inches and so many. very small(size wise) large mouth population biggest caught 12 inches biggest seen 16


I did some literature digging and if you are growing orange spotted sunfish longer than 8" you have some state record if not world record orangespotteds. You must be doing a lot of things right.
Freshwater Fishes of WI says the maximum length is 5.0"(125mm). Carlander said the maximum was 6.9"--7.0"(175mm) from AL.
Wikipedia said maximum recorded length was 5.9".
Iowa indicates they are rarely longer than 4".
Zimmerman who grows them as Aquarium fishes says the maximum is 6"-7".

If you have lots of small sunfish plus numerous smallish bass then I suspect there are too many hiding places for the small fish. I doubt very much that adding walleye will help effectively control the orange spots. I think LMB and lots of smaller ones for sunfish control will be the predator of choice If there are ample weeds present then weed control will help the fish balance. However weed control in larger water bodies such as 8 to 12 acres is not easy nor cheap. Basically the fewer weeds you have the larger the panfish become.

I think adding crappie will complicate the ability of fishery management and likely make all the panfish more overcrowded.


Edited by Bill Cody (01/09/18 03:17 PM)
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#485082 - 01/09/18 04:34 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1783
Loc: West Michigan
Tayten can you tell us if your 'orange spot' are red ears as in the signature picture of Ewest under his post or if they are the smaller orange spotted sunfish in his photo? Note the RES has the orange on the ear tab.

If you have orange spot sunfish, how did you find a source for them? It would be cool to learn about them, how to source them, and how you got them to grow to world record size. Do you have pictures?

If you have RES then getting above 5" makes sense but still i'd like to know how they do over wintering and what your typical winters are like. You are further north than where we are (You are closer to the latitude of Traverse City, MI) and for some reasons lakes around here in SW MI do not have RES in them although I can't see a reason why not. Some pilot stockings by the DNR of RES went well in a few lakes in SE lower MI.

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#485083 - 01/09/18 05:11 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1926
Loc: N FL
does the lake have pike , musky or hybrid NP X Musky ?
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#485089 - 01/09/18 06:47 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Bill D. Offline


Registered: 10/19/14
Posts: 5580
Loc: Boone County Illinois
Tayten,

I think I am reading your post a little different than the other folks. My understanding...

"Problem orange spot sunfish never get bigger than five inches and so many."

"Very small(size wise) large mouth population biggest caught 12 inches biggest seen 16."

I am missing where you say you are catching record size orange spotted sunfish that the others have interpreted your post to say.

For clarity, how big are the orange spotted sunfish?

Thanks,

Bill D.



Edited by Bill D. (01/09/18 06:51 PM)
Edit Reason: typo
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#485092 - 01/09/18 07:32 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1783
Loc: West Michigan
Bill C and I are suggesting (I think) that he isn't seeing a 5" orange spotted sunfish. IF he is, even a 4.5" one, he may be seeing a world record given his locale. So we would like to know if he can post a picture so we can see if he has RES or Orange Spotted SF. IF he truly has world record fish in his pond we all want in on what makes his pond so special.

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#485094 - 01/09/18 07:41 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12398
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Wording of his post was not real clear to me. I think Bill D has a correct interpretation. Lots of small 5" orange spots and bass are small at 12"-16". I doubt he has RES because RES rarely ever overpopulate with bass present.


Edited by Bill Cody (01/09/18 07:44 PM)
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#485095 - 01/09/18 07:43 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Shorty Online   content
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Registered: 07/28/05
Posts: 4172
Loc: Raymond, NE
Given the location I would guess bluegill, pumkinseed, and hybrids would be more likely than orange spotted sunfish or redears.
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#485184 - 01/12/18 11:05 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
Sorry it has been so long yes they are orange spots. Know these ponds are just ponds I am allowed to fish and I just started last spring. And then in the summer In the smaller pond there are schools of about 200 1-3 in BGs in a coupe schools lots of cray fish and frogs and tons tons of YP in the 1-4 inch range. and we arent actually catching or seeing that many bass I think all spring and summer we probably caught 30 from 3 inches to 12 inches from April to September.Back to the ORS I have caught them from 2 inches to close to 6 honestly i think of them as pest they dont get big enough to make much a meal and i can catch probley 30 each time we go out fishing so I cull them. There are RES in the bigger pond and we catch probably 10-15 each time we go out i do keep them but only the bigger ones like 7-10 inch ones we catch and I can confirm they do a number on snails

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#485185 - 01/12/18 11:23 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
So bass problem in both ponds is very few bass and those are small

Both ponds have orange spotted sunfish that are 2-6 inches

The big pond is very over populated with bluegills not stunting but so many keeped around 400 blue gills 6-10 inches and culled every blue gill under 5 inches besides RES i only keep the big ones

Both ponds DO NOT GSF Thankfully

The small pond is 8 acres few weeds mainly rocks and sand flats, and gravel bottoms with over hanging brush around most of the shore and is dirty and murky

The large pond is 12 acres 20 feet deep lots of elodea type weeds and Crystal clear water

I also forgot to mention that in the big pond I caught a 9 inch NP and released him in there I imagine that it wont take him long to get big

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#485186 - 01/12/18 11:29 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
Ewest the picture you posted is what we catch and there is also red eared sunfish

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#485188 - 01/12/18 11:53 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
Should I get a ton of large golden shiners and stock both ponds cause the bass are so small that 8-12 inch GSH would have a ton of time to reproduce and hopefully provide a better food source for all the bigger fish

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#485191 - 01/12/18 06:09 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Daniel Powell Offline


Registered: 12/19/17
Posts: 49
Loc: Maxton, NC
Hey Tayten,

I'm no expert but I don't understand lots of small sunfish and only small bass. Somebody may correct me but I think a 12" bass would target 3"-5" fish. The only way I would think it possible for high numbers of small sunfish and small bass would be because of structure. Either too much thick cover that the small fish can hide from the bass to well. Or no cover at all making the bass hunt in open water and giving the panfish the advantage of seeing the bass coming.

My thought is you should assess the current structure situation and determine what you have. Add cover if needed. If possible for you, feed the sunfish a good food to increase their size. If you can put weight/size on the sunfish, the bass will follow. Assuming they can catch them that is.

Again, I'm a pond noob and these comments are only my thoughts. If I am leading you wrong hopefully someone will chime in and set me straight.

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#485200 - 01/12/18 09:17 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12398
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
D.Powell is providing good advice and rationale. There may be some bigger bass that are hook smart and they are not being caught. There has to be some reason/s for lots of small sunfish and primarily only small bass.
We will assume you have a correct assessment of the fish community size structure and density. Angling alone may not provide an accurate assessment of the fish balance. Angling alone to assess a fishery can have a sampling bias.

With relatively few bass with lots of sunfish, the bass should be growing at least 1" per year with good body condition (high RW, relative weights). Over abundance of panfish can limit bass recruitment and lead to too few predators.

IMO You do not want to add GSH (shiners) because with abundant small sunfish you want bass eating sunfish not shiners. When bass have adequate numbers of sunfish available the bass will grow very well.


Edited by Bill Cody (01/12/18 09:19 PM)
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#485207 - 01/13/18 10:48 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19373
Loc: Miss.
Agree with Bill that the facts and answers don't seem to match. One thing to find out , which often effects population dynamics, is winter kill. Ask around and see if there has been a winter kill.
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#485208 - 01/13/18 10:51 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Bocomo Offline


Registered: 05/06/12
Posts: 1132
Loc: Boone County, MO (pond)
A shock boat survey now (springtime) might save you a lot of time & money later on.
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#485217 - 01/13/18 07:06 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Rainman Offline
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Originally Posted By: Tayten b
Should I get a ton of large golden shiners and stock both ponds cause the bass are so small that 8-12 inch GSH would have a ton of time to reproduce and hopefully provide a better food source for all the bigger fish


Until you can get a better idea of all fish species and sizes, the LAST thing to do right now is to add more fish!

If you are wanting larger Bass, and it sounds like you do, according to your descriptions, you already have an abundance of forage available.

As for your title "Cheap and effective...."...There are very effective ways to manage large bodies of water, yet not many "cheap" ways. A 10 acre pond will cost about 10 times as much as a one acre pond. Most all strategies require record keeping, knowing what you have in the pond, and time! Things don't happen fast!
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#485290 - 01/16/18 02:33 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
Okay thank you And thats the thing I dont want to spend a lot on the pond as I dont own it and the people who are going to be selling I will probably still have quite a bit of time as it is a very large price they are asking also I bought a inflatable raft to fish off the summer so I can get to some the big weed beds and areas along the shore line that cant be fished from the shore. And I was looking back at a few pictures i took a couple bass I caught with my nephews and all the bass are fat like really fat in both ponds

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#485291 - 01/16/18 02:36 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
and the thing with the pan fish is there is a good size range like I can consistently catch 7-9 inch bluegills every time out and 8-13 inch perch in the 10 acre pond but i catch a lot of them little ones two

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#485347 - 01/17/18 09:01 PM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Bill Cody Offline
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Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
A good size range of all species indicates a good "balance" and a healthy fishery. Keep in mind a good natural "balance" or community structure has more numbers in each group of each respective smaller size class.

In most fish communities with reproducing populations, the group with the fewest numbers are the ones that are at the top, they are the largest size - the biggest ones of that species in the pond often considered 'trophy' sizes for that BOWater. The group with the most numbers is the fingerling size group. It is common for each size group to loose 50% of them each year to some sort of mortality until that age group is very old when only a few of them remain. As those oldest fish die there needs to be the individuals of the next smaller size to take the place of those largest fish. This applies to forage fish and sport fish. When those fish are not being replaced with similar sized large fish, your job is to figure out where the problem is.


Edited by Bill Cody (01/19/18 10:17 AM)
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#485396 - 01/19/18 11:39 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
Thanks everyone I have a general idea what I am going to do

In the 8 acre pond I am going to continue to remove any orange spotted sunfish under 4.5 inches. I am going to only keep bluegills 6-7 inches and release blue gills of trophy status and smaller than 6. for perch I am going to keep perch 8-12 inches as there are high populations of these and release perch over that for trophy status for bass i am going to try targeting them more and get a better idea of there population and size range. with there being ice right now I am also going to go make some brush piles on the ice so after it melts there will be some more cover to maybe help with LMB recruitment if I catch any other spices as in this pond there is rumored to be walleyes and two summers ago a brown trout was caught. Also when ever we go to the local creek and catch cray fish I will bring them over and release them in both in both pond as a food source for perch and bass in the 8 and as hopefully weed control in the 10 to hopefully clear some spots of weeds for bass to spawn. I will also depending on the ice( all the ponds are spring feed so ice thickness in the 10 acre pond is very ify) make some brush piles there sow hen they sink to block some of the weeds.

In the 10 acre pond I am keeping all bluegills 7 inches and under since this pond is so weedy all perch I catch out of this pond will be transferred to the 8 acre pond no matter what size

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#485530 - 01/24/18 11:27 AM Re: Cheap and effective large pond managment [Re: Tayten b]
Tayten b Offline


Registered: 12/08/17
Posts: 32
Loc: Green Bay,WI
Oh sorry just another quick question so My main focus is on the 8 acre pond as this pond has the largest species diversity and least amount of problems so this winter I am going to make some brush piles if a few determined spots. Then this summer I am going to to try to map out the the pond and its depths then I also bought a inflatable raft that i will use to be able to explore the pond and fish the areas that normally cant be fished because they are unacceptable (brush, and step edges) I am hoping to catch some larger bass to get a better idea of there size and population. does this sound like a good idea to do instead of electrofishing as I dont have the money to do this and the owner 99.9% sure wont want to spend the money on it either

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