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#485890 - 02/06/18 12:37 PM Need help stocking 3 year old pond
WIhunter Offline


Registered: 02/06/18
Posts: 6
Loc: WI USA
First I would like to apologize because I know that this topic has probably been beaten to death. I have read a couple hours worth of topics here similar to my pond but nothing really close to my particular pond.

I dug a 1/4 acre pond in NE WI 3 summers ago. Its a smaller pond but at the deepest hole it is around 15-16 ft deep. My kids have used it the last couple of years for swimming. Last year we ran into a leech problem when the kids were swimming. My son came out of the pond with 7 leeches on one foot. We would like to stock it with fish for fishing and to maybe reduce the leech population, but still want the kids to be comfortable swimming and not get nibbled on. Is this an option? Would really like to lean toward YP, but what would I need as far as predator fish.

Also, the one guy that has YP says that they are trained. I make it out to this pond about once a week during the summer but less frequent during the winter. What would need to be done to feed the fish (auto feeder, more frequent visits?) or would they eventually feed off of the pond and if I stock it with minnows?

Any help would greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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#485891 - 02/06/18 02:00 PM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
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Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
I would start with YP. If you can arrange a feeder setup I would get the pellet trained YP. You will get the best growth of your perch and the most perch in 1/4ac if you feed pellets. You can get a high quality dependable economical feeder if you just buy just the dispenser mechanism kit and attach it to a 5 gal bucket. Or buy the hanging feeder; both are now on sale. You will need a dock to hang the feeder from for most all around benefits from a hanging feeder.
http://www.texashunterproducts.com/texas-hunter-12-volt-wildlife-feeder-kit/#.Wnn4P0xFxZU

Or the hanging feeder.
http://www.texashunterproducts.com/hanging-fish-feeder-with-hanging-bracket/#.Wnn4r0xFxZU

You can grow YP in a pond without feeding but the sizes and numbers will be noticibly less than if they were pellet fed. Same is true for BG. If you use YP without pellets then get your fathead minnows established in spring and stock YP in fall. usually 6-8 SMB in 1/4ac are enough to easily control YP offspring. Adult YP also eat some small 1"-3" YP.

My 1st choice for predators of YP would be HSB and smallmouth 2nd best. HSB won't reproduce and SMB have often have limited reproduction. Too many predators crop too many of the YP and the panfishing numbers suffer a lot. If you don;t like the YP fishery you can always add BG&LMB and then in a few years that combination takes charge of the community.

Are the leeches small ones or large dark colored ones? Free living small fish leeches are common in ponds and YP and some fish may help a somewhat to control them. The small fish leeches are not blood sucking forms. They live on fins of fish and in the organic sediments eating primarily organic materials. Leeches usually arrive in ponds via turtles.


Edited by Bill Cody (02/06/18 02:04 PM)
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#485893 - 02/06/18 03:01 PM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
RER Offline


Registered: 01/23/12
Posts: 1925
Loc: N FL
you can just add crayfish and they will work on the leaches. You could harvest them from time to time and have a big boil to control the population.
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#485894 - 02/06/18 03:52 PM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
WIhunter Offline


Registered: 02/06/18
Posts: 6
Loc: WI USA
Thanks for the replies. Going with the YP is the way I wanted to go, just didn't know when I should introduce a predator fish (next year maybe?).

The leeches are the bigger dark colored ones and they would latch on the kids feet pretty good.

From what I am reading the YP will not nibble compared to the BG, am I correct?

Up next would be for me to aerate the pond. There is no electricity so I am looking into solar or possibly wind but the pond is protected by the woods so getting sufficient wind to the turbine might be tough.

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#485897 - 02/06/18 05:21 PM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
Bill Cody Offline
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Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
The YP and SMB should significantly reduce the number of leeches. YP will root into the sediments looking for food items. Once the YP figure out leeches are in the sediments they should eat a lot of leeches. Does anyone know if when larger dark leeches are in the sediments does any part of their body stick above the sediment?

YP will not bother swimmer unless the perch are overpopulated in the pond with numerous stunted perch. However the more YP that are in the pond the more they will prey on the leeches. YP will also eat pond snails - genus Physa, Physella.


Edited by Bill Cody (02/06/18 05:24 PM)
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#485901 - 02/06/18 07:05 PM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
Theo Gallus Offline
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Registered: 05/14/04
Posts: 12356
Loc: Central Ohio
Dr. Perca (Cody) has also previously discussed the use of Walleye for YP population control - a fixed predator number option like HSB, albeit a better tasting choice (IMO). Not as much fun to catch, though.

If contemplating a YP pond, one could do worse than reading everything Bill has ever written on them.
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#485902 - 02/06/18 07:56 PM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
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Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Comparing predators of YP, HSB to walleye (WE) in my experience the HSB are easier to catch, HSB readily eat pellets, grow much better and quicker to large sizes in ponds, and HSB are much easier to catch compared to WE. However as Theo mentions WE are much better guests when invited to dinner.
Theo - Thanks for the compliment. I do love the YP as a pond fish.
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#485912 - 02/07/18 08:07 AM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
WIhunter Offline


Registered: 02/06/18
Posts: 6
Loc: WI USA
Good Stuff right here. I think that I am going to start with the YP and go from there. What kind of numbers are we thinking I should start with a pond this size. (1/4 acre up to 15 ft Deep) Also when should the predator fish be added, in a year?

Thanks for all the help. Since I have found this site I sure have burnt up a lot of my free time.

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#485918 - 02/07/18 11:20 AM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
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Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Numbers of yellow perch to stock will depend on your goals and how soon you would like to be catching some eating size YP. First thing I would do is add some fathead minnows to get your YP stockers going strong. Several variables apply here. Numbers of FHM to stock also depends on what size and how many YP you add, when you add them,, and if you plan to feed the fish pellets?. If you stock pellet eating YP you will not need as many minnows to feed them because the YP will eat mostly pellets and just supplement their diet with occasional minnows. This plan allows the minnows to spawn and lots of young minnows to survive the first year. These minnows will be brood stock for later years if you have some habitat for minnow survival.

Initially stocking minnow eating perch requires lots of minnows to feed the YP. So the more YP you add,,, the more minnows you need to stock along with the YP. Plan on each YP to eat at least 0.3 lb of minnows (1"-1.5") per growing season when both are stocked together. Other option is in SPRING stock FHM 1-3 lbs in 0.25ac,,, allow them to spawn all spring and summer,,,, and in fall add the YP of mixed sizes. When you stock 4"-6" YP in fall some of them will likely spawn the next spring.

Actually at least three ways to get started with YP in your 3 yr old pond.
1. Low Stocking Number. Add a few adult YP (1-2 egg laden females and 3-6 males). Do this before the water temp is 50F. Allow them to spawn and you will have lots of young perch - maybe too many. Then in fall add a FEW predators. Plan on each predator to eat 250-350 small YP each year. Young perch will live primarily on the natural foods produced by the pond. The few YP adults will eat bugs, leeches and little YP.

2. Add 40-50 4"-6" YP + 12-15lb minnows after the wild perch in your area have spawned when water temp is 60+F. If you use pellet trained YP and feed them then use only 2-4 lbs minnows. With ample food a few YP should be 7"-8.5" by fall; most will be 6"-7".

3. My choice for quickly getting some eating size YP the first fall. Add two sizes of YP 4"-6" and 6"-8" for a total of 40-60 fish in 0.25ac with some FHM to get some small FHM produced. Ratio of small : large YP sizes can vary. Use higher ratio of larger ones if you want to harvest some (10-20) the 1st fall-winter. The larger stocker 6"-8" YP should grow to be 8"-10" by fall. Adding more YP than 60 and up to 100/0.2ac could get more predation of the leech problem but growth of YP would overall be IMO less.

For a spring YP stocking, I prefer to stay away from the 2"-3" YP size group because these are mostly runts & males and slower growers. Using mostly the slower growing male perch has benefits but not for what I think are your stated goals.


Edited by Bill Cody (02/07/18 02:42 PM)
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#486148 - 02/14/18 05:33 PM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
WIhunter Offline


Registered: 02/06/18
Posts: 6
Loc: WI USA
Thanks for all the help. I can't wait to get started.

Is there a good database online to find fish stocking farms in WI? I have looked and I am coming up empty handed.

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#486160 - 02/15/18 11:19 AM Re: Need help stocking 3 year old pond [Re: WIhunter]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12334
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Use a reputable well established source,,, one that can be easily contacted if you have fish troubles. It is worthwhile to drive several hours to get high quality fish.
Start with this place plus there are other good places in WI.
http://www.gollonfishfarm.com/


Edited by Bill Cody (02/15/18 11:20 AM)
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