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#487484 - 03/20/18 05:10 PM Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie....
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Ok, Iím here to pick the brains of pond boss members. Iíve got 10 Tiger Muskie that are 13-16Ē long. Iím planning to divide them into 2 groups of five and put them into 2 different 4í x 4í x 4í cages off my dock. My goal is to train them to feed on cut bait. Iíve got a trout farm up the road where I get fresh frozen trout remains every week. Plenty to feed a few Muskie. My questions are..... 1) will they eat cut bait? And 2) how do I go about feeding it to them?

In my mind I assume they will eat cut bait because Iíve heard of people catching both pike and pure Muskie on cut bait. So that puts me at question #2.... For a few days I plan to just throw the cut bait in and see if theyíll eat it off the bottom. When I began throwing trout remains to catfish, they were smashing it on the surface in days. Can I expect a similar response with Muskie? Or would I be better served to somehow suspend the cut bait in the cage as if I were fishing it under a bobber, but without a hook? And if I choose to suspend the bait for training purposes, does anyone have any ideas how to do such?

Anyway, I wanted to start this thread so I could chronicle my results and share with others that may attempt such a task.
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#487497 - 03/20/18 09:42 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12519
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Adventuresome, lofty, aspiring project. Good idea but maybe not achievable. IMO you will need to be quite creative to accomplish this with success. The problem as I see it is, the muskie are not a behaviorally aggressive fish as is LMB or HSB. Muskie do chase food but not to the same type predatory behavior as a bass. Muskie are more of a lie & wait, watchful predator rather than a moving stalker/hunter as is a bass. For your sake and project, I hope I am wrong. IMO Muskie approaches food differently than a bass.

I think I would first get the musky to adapting to live/survive in a cage,,, which will be a big challenge. Their mentality is to first likely to eat the other sibling/partners until they are the sole inhabitant of the cage. No2 - will be to get them to eat and remain healthy before they develop health problems such as fungus. No3 - I would start first by feeding them live fish. Get them eating asap. Then when you see them attacking the added live food as soon as it is added to the cage, the muskie are close to accepting anything that wiggles & sinks into the cage.

I am very interested in your project and give you high marks for thinking of trying it. I hope it works! Keep us updated.
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#487498 - 03/20/18 10:12 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Dam'dWaters Online   content


Registered: 10/05/17
Posts: 101
Loc: Iowa
Are your cages built? I would think you'd benefit from having a larger space (6x6x4). The length of your juvenile muskies will likely be approaching 50% of the "run" you're planning fairly soon. Given Bill's advice on getting them to eventually strike what's dropped in their cage, you'll want space to avoid injury from other fish and the cage itself.

Not a perfect comparison, but I can't imagine feeding/growing five young 6" LMB in 20" cube.

I'd love to see you get it to work out so I may someday copy you!
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#487508 - 03/21/18 08:39 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Well, I'm glad you guys brought this up. Some of these objectives have already been tackled, in a sense. Last fall, a certain dentist that used to frequent this board and I bought 24 Tiger Muskie. Since then they have been in a 6' circumference tank in his basement (1000 gallon or so). He only had one casualty due to it getting stuck on the lip of the tank. They've been eating FHM all winter. He is releasing his in his quarry and we are going to attempt feed training mine in cages. Bill was concerned about cannibalism, as were we. But that hasn't seemed to be an issue. Maybe moving them to a square cage will make it an issue. But I'm hoping not. And they do associate food with people now. So a couple of those hurdles have been addressed.

My plan is to throw them in the cages and monitor them. If cannibalism begins I'll either move them to the grow out pond, or release them in my larger pond. Ideally, I'd like to get them trained within a couple months and then move them to my grow out pond for a year or so.

Thanks for responding to this post. All input is appreciated.
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#487511 - 03/21/18 09:28 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Shorty Offline
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Registered: 07/28/05
Posts: 4230
Loc: Raymond, NE
Any possibility of using a large round cage for feed training? My gut feeling is that you would get better results.
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#487512 - 03/21/18 09:29 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1889
Loc: West Michigan
It appears from the facebook live video last week that this certain Nebraska dentist already has put some tiger muskie in his quarry! They seem to be growing quite well. Awesome project!

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#487519 - 03/21/18 10:49 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Bill Cody Offline
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Okay if the muskie are already in a tank environment then adapting them to cage life should be no problem. They are eating and healthy and feeding - so no problem. I would try to see if they will eat small live sunfish. Then experiment with injuring the introduced live fish so they swim like a dead piece of fish to eventually imitate fish guts.

My initial guess is the smaller muskie are males and larger ones females.


Edited by Bill Cody (03/21/18 10:50 AM)
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#487543 - 03/21/18 03:25 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: Shorty]
NEDOC Offline
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Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Originally Posted By: Shorty
Any possibility of using a large round cage for feed training? My gut feeling is that you would get better results.


I would try that, but I'm borrowing the good dentist's cages, and they aren't round. I'm too cheap and lazy to make round ones smile

Yes Bill, I plan to trap some RES and throw them in, in an attempt to hold off cannibalism until they are used to the cage and are willing to attempt cut bait. I believe I'm going to attempt hanging two pieces of cut bait from the lid of the cage, attached to a modified hook that is suspended from a steel leader. I will cut 4" x 4" holes in the lid and hang them from the framing of those holes. This way I can pull them up and monitor feeding activity. I may even leave a couple inches of slack in them so I can attach a float and monitor their feeding activity. If they begin hitting the cut bait as soon as I put it in the cage I'll know I have them trained. I'll be heading to Lincoln tomorrow to get the cages. I'll try to post pictures and videos as I progress.
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#487558 - 03/21/18 08:01 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12519
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
This will be a very interesting and educational project for all readers. Thanks for sharing your experiences!
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#487643 - 03/23/18 01:44 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Sunil Offline
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Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 11520
Loc: Somerset, PA
Dentists from Nebraska are all freaks.
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#487652 - 03/23/18 03:54 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
wbuffetjr Offline


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 868
Loc: in the mountains
Very cool. I would love to one day have a Tiger Muskie or two in my lake.
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#487653 - 03/23/18 04:14 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Jim Wetzel Offline


Registered: 08/16/17
Posts: 367
Loc: Holts Summit, MO
Fish are going to be flighty when you approach from above that will cut into their interest in feeding.

You could hold the cut bait with a small alligator clip tied to fishing line and wiggle it in front the musk to get them to take it. At some point you want to be able to simply drop pieces in. Feeding method for the pike family just does not work well with feeding small chunks requiring fish to turn around to eat more pieces in rapid succession.

You might as well be hand feeding them which can be done.
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#487657 - 03/23/18 05:15 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: Sunil]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Originally Posted By: Sunil
Dentists from Nebraska are all freaks.



There is no doubt about this!! Lol

I like the alligator clip idea. Thanks Jim!


Edited by NEDOC (03/23/18 05:30 PM)

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#487658 - 03/23/18 06:33 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
wbuffetjr Offline


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 868
Loc: in the mountains
Post up some videos of the process!!
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#487659 - 03/23/18 06:44 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: wbuffetjr]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Originally Posted By: wbuffetjr
Post up some videos of the process!!


Thatís the plan.

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#489429 - 05/02/18 09:53 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Just going to update this post to chronicle my efforts, albeit most likely failed efforts. None the less, there may be some things we can all learn from it. I'll start with video of my grow out pond and cages. Then a video of the transfer and some photos. Again, we have taken these from a tank in Bruce Condello's basement where they have been eating FHMs. The second day I had them in the cages (8 TM per cage) I put 11 bullfrog tadpoles in one cage. The next day only 2 remained. So the good news is is that I have them feeding. Now I'd like them to progress to cut bait, or trout from a local commercial trout farm. The plan is to start hanging live tadpoles or sunfish from alligator clips suspended from floats. Then progress to hanging cut bait from the clips. We are only on day 3 now.......







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#489438 - 05/02/18 11:35 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
wbuffetjr Offline


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 868
Loc: in the mountains
very cool!
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#489464 - 05/02/18 09:35 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1889
Loc: West Michigan
Quick question here. I have the photobucket extension 'fix' added to chrome at home so i can see all the old photobucket pictures from old posts. At work I can see in the post above that below the youtube embedded links in NEDOCs post there are some pictures posted too. At home I can't see those pictures.

I also noticed in wbuffetjrs recent posts I can't see the pictures from home but can from work. NEDOC and WBuffet, are you using photobucket for recent image hosting? or is maybe my chrome browser having trouble with another photohosting service?

Crazy that I can see at work but not at home in my chrome browser?

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#489468 - 05/02/18 10:20 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
My most recent pictures are hosted by imgur. Itís not a bad hosting site. Not sure why youíre not seeing it. Anyone else having trouble with the imgur images.
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#489469 - 05/02/18 10:28 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
wbuffetjr Offline


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 868
Loc: in the mountains
I am using Imgur as well. I can see Nedoc's pics


Edited by wbuffetjr (05/02/18 10:28 PM)
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#489724 - 05/07/18 10:44 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
I think I made a significant break thru today. After a text conversation with TJ today he suggested using worms. By the time I got to my third worm the musky were trained and hitting it within 20 seconds. Now I can thoroughly get them to associate food with alligator clips or me throwing items in the water. I plan to train them to respond to both having worms on clips and me throwing worms in the water. Then I hope to add a sound such as a bell to feeding time so they will have another sense to associate with food. Iíll try to convert them to chunks of trout that I have access to over time. No idea how I will introduce the fish to my large pond and keep them on the diet Iíve trained them on but Iíll cross that bridge when I get to it.





Edited by NEDOC (05/08/18 08:16 AM)
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#489734 - 05/08/18 08:44 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
AquaticsFanatic Offline


Registered: 05/07/18
Posts: 19
Loc: Indiana
Awesome experiment it has been facinating to watch your progress! How cool would it be to have a small group of Tigers come running to the dinner table when you call! How many Tigers do you have they are going to take over your pond like a school of sharks! Lol

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#490259 - 05/18/18 09:47 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
OK, so for the few of you that have been following this, here are some updates. As you saw above I began by training my muskie by putting worms on alligator clips under a float. That worked rather quickly. Then I attempted to progress to having them take it off of an alligator clip while jigging. That got frustrating at times. But yesterday I turned the corner on that..... big time. I went from getting them to hit the worm aggressively and regularly while jigging, to having them hit strips of tilapia and trout while jigging, to hitting strips of tilapia while falling through the water column. So without further ado, here is my video chronicle.....


Hitting worm while jigging...



My project advisor and top muskie trainer feeding a fillet of tilapia stripped out and jigged/swam.....



Hitting a strip of trout....



And what I was hoping to evolve to is having them hit strips of meat as I throw it into their cage. In this case it was a strip of tilapia. And they were only hitting about 50% of the ones I threw in. But 1) they may have been full and 2) it'll take some acclimation.



Ultimately, I'd like to progress to something like this. Keep in mind this is a feeding of my catfish....

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#490262 - 05/18/18 10:16 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
DrLuke Offline


Registered: 06/04/15
Posts: 351
Loc: Grinnell, IA
NEDOC, this is so awesome! Thank you for sharing. I have high hopes they will continue to progress in their feeding. Might get to the point I fella would be nervous about putting his hand too close to the cage! :-)
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#490264 - 05/18/18 10:24 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
wbuffetjr Offline


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 868
Loc: in the mountains
very awesome!!
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#490266 - 05/18/18 10:39 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: DrLuke]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Originally Posted By: DrLuke
NEDOC, this is so awesome! Thank you for sharing. I have high hopes they will continue to progress in their feeding. Might get to the point I fella would be nervous about putting his hand too close to the cage! :-)


Oh when I wash my hands off after handling those worms and such, you better believe I do it outside of the cage. LOL.
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#490269 - 05/18/18 10:57 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Bill Cody Offline
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Lunker

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12519
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Repetition and patience in training is a key part of the process. Very interesting and educational posts. Many thanks from all. One suggestion. When you clip the meat,,, only clip a very thin sliver of the meat so a very light tug from the fish releases the meat. It appears from the video the clip is grabbing too much of a portion of the meat.

Questions -
How often do you feed the meat pieces?
and how much meat each time?
To how many musky in the cage?
Are you thinking all musky are getting pieces of meat?
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#490272 - 05/18/18 11:36 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: Bill Cody]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Repetition and patience in training is a key part of the process. Very interesting and educational posts. Many thanks from all. One suggestion. When you clip the meat,,, only clip a very thin sliver of the meat so a very light tug from the fish releases the meat. It appears from the video the clip is grabbing too much of a portion of the meat.

Questions -
How often do you feed the meat pieces?
and how much meat each time?
To how many musky in the cage?
Are you thinking all musky are getting pieces of meat?


Those are great questions that I largely don't have answers to at this time. Much of this all began taking place just yesterday. I'll do the best I can at answering them now and will come back and update it as I progress.

I try to feed the muskie toward dark, largely because they feed higher in the water column toward dusk so I get better observation. But some days I feed mid day, some days I don't feed at all, and some days I feed multiple times. This is largely due to my erratic schedule. I'm sure I could do better if I was more consistent, but that isn't happening until my boys are old enough to do this themselves, in the mornings. I had been feeding about 10-18 worms each day. As far as sizes of meat, I was varying sizes last night, with no noticeable difference in their interest. Obviously, I'd like them to progress to larger chunks to make the process more efficient for me. But it's a work in progress.

I have 2 cages. 8 TM per cage. The one cage of fish I have put my time and effort toward and chronicled above, the other one has largely gone ignored. Only occasionally putting worms on floats, which they'll eat after I leave the scene. Not sure if I should mix the fish next and hope those learn from the trained ones, or begin the training process on them. Maybe get advice here for the best way to proceed.

I really don't know how many are trained to eat yet. In one of the videos above, you can see 4 separate fish around the meat. So I'm assuming there are at minimum 4 trained. I'm assuming some won't train and will be cannibalized, but will find out as time goes on. I do hope to get 2 more cages from Dr. Condello and go to 4 TM per cage at some point.

Thanks for the dialogue fellas. Always glad to have people pitch in with ideas. And I'm certainly counting on Mr. Cody to share his expertise. Soon, Dr. Condello and I would like to acquire TM fingerlings, and begin this process in his tank at a much earlier stage in life. If these train as well as I'm hoping I'll build a grow out pond for them so we can get a season or two in the grow out pond before releasing.
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#490306 - 05/18/18 10:29 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Just typing this in for future reference in case anyone attempts this in the future, and in response to Bill Cody above... tonight I cut up one tilapia fillet into 30 small, thin, worm shaped pieces. Out of the 30 pieces that I threw in and let free fall through the water column, I observed 27 of them eaten. The other 3 pieces may have been eaten but they had gotten deep enough that I couldnít observe them getting eaten. Now onto training them to eat the trout waste I have access to.
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#490319 - 05/19/18 10:57 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Bill Cody Offline
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First try using some of the stringy guts very, very lightly held to the clip so it takes very little effort to get it off the clip. You may first need to clip the trout parts and shake them to imitate something live to get the TM accustomed to eating the parts.
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#490323 - 05/19/18 01:29 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: Bill Cody]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Thatís a good idea Bill. I may file down the small teeth on the alligator clips also.

I have had them hit a few belly strips falling through the water column. So I think with repetition I wonít even need to clip them. I could just throw pieces in one or two at a time.

Truth be told, Iím so damn excited that Iíve been dreaming Muskie for 3 nights now. Itís disrupting my parenting. Lol.

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#490674 - 05/25/18 08:24 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Update: They're taking larger strips of tilapia now, and noticeably more aggressive. Soon I'll be shifting to a diet heavier in chunks of trout that I get from nearby commercial fish farm and strips of catfish fillets that I've culled from my larger pond. I really wish video showed it as well as what I can see it through polarized lenses. You can really learn a lot about muskie by going through this.



Edited by NEDOC (05/25/18 08:26 AM)

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#490676 - 05/25/18 09:28 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1889
Loc: West Michigan
NEDOC, many have found that if you put the camera lens on the backside of the polarized glasses lens you can get pictures that match what you see when your sunglasses are on!

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#490678 - 05/25/18 09:40 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
CC, seems like common sense. Not sure why I hadn't done that!! I'll try it for the next video update.
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#490683 - 05/25/18 12:04 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
DrLuke Offline


Registered: 06/04/15
Posts: 351
Loc: Grinnell, IA
So it appears like they've continued to progress in their willingness to take offered feed, eh? Any cannibalization so far? Have you been checking body condition or relative weights yet? Just curious.

And....really awesome stuff! :-)
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#490686 - 05/25/18 12:46 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Definitely progressing in their willingness to take feed. In fact thereís generally a noticeable increase with each feeding. There has been no cannibalizism at all. I have done absolutely no studies on relative weights or body condition as Iíve tried to minimize any contact with them. Iím a bit fearful of stressing them any further. This looks to be an annual project so I may look into relative weights and such in future years.
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#490687 - 05/25/18 12:58 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
DrLuke Offline


Registered: 06/04/15
Posts: 351
Loc: Grinnell, IA
Good point on the stressing, and avoiding it. Wonder if a guy could tare the weight of the cage, and then just lift and weigh the cage with the fish in it for a few seconds. Wouldn't give the individual weights, but could document wt trend overall. But not sure if that would be helpful enough information to bother with.

Love the videos! Might be cool to try the polarized lens trick like Canyon suggested..


Edited by DrLuke (05/25/18 02:43 PM)
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#490692 - 05/25/18 02:34 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
teehjaeh57 Offline
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Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 7892
Loc: Lincoln, NE
Super cool Corey...I'm a tad worried about our extended forecast and rising water temps stressing the TM - I'm not sure on TM tolerance for water temps. If they stop feeding I'd take this as a sign to release in one of your new cells. Just a thought.
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#490699 - 05/25/18 04:36 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
TJ Iíve got that covered. As you know weíve got good access to the aquifer down here. And as you also know my grow out ponds spill into my large pond. So instead of spending money on a traditional aeration system, I went the cheap route and fabricated a horizontal aeration system for my grow out pond that I turn on during warm days. Essentially I use the pressure from my well to Ďpushí the water around my grow out pond creating a lazy river effect. A few advantages to doing so.... 1) less money spent in the short term 2) flush nutrients 3) ability to lower water temps and 4) overflow helps keep my big pond from dropping as much.

PS. They are in one of my Ďnew cellsí in cages. And it appears that our BGxRES experiment may fail. (Sorry snrub). So the TM may end up being released into that pond. Which is 600 sq ft.


Edited by NEDOC (05/25/18 04:40 PM)
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#490713 - 05/25/18 09:34 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Bill Cody Offline
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Great progress with training the muskie.


Edited by Bill Cody (05/25/18 09:34 PM)
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#490892 - 05/29/18 05:33 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Progressing quickly now to larger chunks and more frequent feedings. And cage #2 is beginning to feed well now also. Went through nearly 3/4 lb of trout chunks today. Seems growth is inevitable if that keeps up. So Iím planning to add 2 more cages in a couple days and have 4 fish per cage rather than 8. Feeding on larger chunks is a huge advantage to me as I spend a good portion of my time cutting up strips of trout or tilapia. So these recent developments are nice. Canít wait til their gape allows an entire trout head to be consumed.



Will embed video tomorrow when on computer. Grrr...


Edited by NEDOC (05/30/18 08:08 AM)
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#490895 - 05/29/18 07:05 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
wbuffetjr Offline


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 868
Loc: in the mountains
Check this out. This was just the first one I pulled up, but they have them for all types of phones these days. May be a little easier, but more expensive, than filming through your sunglasses. It would be really cool to be able to see the fish hitting the chunks!


Polarized lens for iphone
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#490902 - 05/29/18 09:36 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Thatís cool as heck!! Iíll be able to do it thru my sunglasses. I just had my son filming today. And itís risky enough having a 7 year old filming over water. Asking him to do it over sunglasses would definitely lead to disaster. And Iíve got a bloom going on right now. So Iím not sure how well itíd work anyway.


Edited by NEDOC (05/29/18 09:37 PM)
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#491822 - 06/14/18 12:09 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Just a couple updated videos of us playing around. The first one is a tadpole on an alligator clip. You can see they are getting super aggressive. And the second one is feeding tilapia strips. For some odd reason the TM don't feed very well unless the lid of the cage is open. Strange.




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#491824 - 06/14/18 12:16 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
DrLuke Offline


Registered: 06/04/15
Posts: 351
Loc: Grinnell, IA
Looking really good! How well do they seem to be growing? Coping with the cage and the water temps/summer heat ok?

Thanks for the updates!
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#491827 - 06/14/18 12:45 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
CMM Offline


Registered: 10/07/12
Posts: 620
Loc: West Central MO
Awesome project and videos!
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#491836 - 06/14/18 01:25 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Quarter Acre Offline


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 843
Loc: West Central Missouri
Thanks for the tadpole experiment...cool project too!
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#491850 - 06/14/18 03:24 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Luke, itís kinda hard for me to tell how much theyíre growing as I didnít weigh or measure. The last I picked up the cage they did appear noticeable thicker but not noticeably longer that I could tell. But they hadnít started to feed as aggressively at that time. Now Iím going thru 1/4-1/2 lb of meat per day (16 Muskie total). So Iíve gotta think theyíll be bulking up.

Water temps are fine as when it warms up I add well water thru a horizontal aeration system Iíve designed. It seems to be working well.
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#491858 - 06/14/18 04:29 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
DrLuke Offline


Registered: 06/04/15
Posts: 351
Loc: Grinnell, IA
Originally Posted By: NEDOC
Luke, itís kinda hard for me to tell how much theyíre growing as I didnít weigh or measure. The last I picked up the cage they did appear noticeable thicker but not noticeably longer that I could tell. But they hadnít started to feed as aggressively at that time. Now Iím going thru 1/4-1/2 lb of meat per day (16 Muskie total). So Iíve gotta think theyíll be bulking up.

Water temps are fine as when it warms up I add well water thru a horizontal aeration system Iíve designed. It seems to be working well.


they sure look more aggressive via videos. Do you have a specific end point/release time in mind? When they come out of the cages, I wonder how they'll do regarding localizing to the feeding station. I always seem to find the fridge without too much difficulty..
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#491860 - 06/14/18 04:40 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Registered: 08/20/04
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Iím considering releasing them from cages into my smallest (600 sq ft) grow out pond in late September. Itís about 6 ft deep so I think I could over winter them. If I run a small aquarium air stone off the dock I think I could keep a very small area of water open and continue feeding them thru the winter. Either that or just release them into my 15 acre pond and say good bye. To be honest Iím not sure what my end game is as this project has probably been a bit more successful than anticipated.
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#491864 - 06/14/18 04:48 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
teehjaeh57 Offline
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Awesome Corey! Will your TM actually eat the BG tadpole? If so, that will be the first time I've ever actually witnessed the event.

Will the TM eat the trout organs? Is TP the most preferred? I have tried many different approaches myself, and ofc their favorite is also the most expensive....TP.
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#491869 - 06/14/18 05:01 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Registered: 08/20/04
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They seem to eat trout parts and pieces nearly as well as the tilapia. I just didnít have access to trout parts for a couple weeks due to them taking time off from cleaning them. Will probably resume trout tonight or tomorrow. From what I can tell they eat the tadpoles at times. Other times they kill them and spit them out.

You up for putting one of these in your pond TJ? I understand if you donít for obvious reasons. But thought you could try it for a bit and abort if there are negative consequences.
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#491876 - 06/14/18 05:43 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
teehjaeh57 Offline
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Registered: 01/22/08
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I'm trying to get my YP population back to robust numbers, but I could sure give one a try. If I need to remove Condello can cast once and catch it.
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#492139 - 06/18/18 11:18 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Registered: 08/20/04
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Loc: SC Nebraska
Just wanted to archive this link in here for future reference regarding tiger Muskie controlling trash fish and discussing stocking densities. Discussions of stocking rates anywhere from 4-30 TM per acre.

http://www.wildlife.state.nm.us/download...-Brief-2014.pdf

Iíll continue to add for archives sake as I continue to study. But hereís another one...

http://www.ndow.org/uploadedFiles/ndow.o...32315_final.pdf


Edited by NEDOC (06/18/18 11:35 PM)
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#495201 - 08/22/18 10:26 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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I apologize in advance for not chronicling this better, but the way Iíve designed my cages with feed windows itís difficult to get video or pictures of the fish. I will say theyíre doing incredibly well. All 16 are still alive, have tremendous coloring and are incredibly thick. Iím guessing theyíve tripled their weight (the largest ones) since I began this project this spring. Iíve continued to feed chunks of tilapia off of alligator clips and they average 20-30oz (maybe more) of consumption per week between all of them.

So that brings me to my update... curiousity got the best of me and I was wondering if I could convert them to a prepared feed. I had an idea that I quit feeding tilapia for a few days and begin throwing worms in again then progress from there. Last Friday was my last feeding of tilapia. Sunday thru Tuesday I fed them 2 dozen worms (6 per feeding and 4 different feedings). I had a couple hits out of those 24, but nothing terribly exciting. Well tonight curiousity got the best of me... I took some hydrated Optimal Grower #2 and formed it into earthworm like shapes. To my amazement the first 2 I threw in were smashed by the Muskie. I made 9 pieces total and I observed 5 of them get taken. The others may have gotten taken but had dropped out of sight. Not sure if the taste of it will leave them craving more or scare them off. But I was very excited about this development! Hopefully more exciting updates to come. Thanks for listening.
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#495208 - 08/23/18 08:24 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
wbuffetjr Offline


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 868
Loc: in the mountains
Thanks for the update!

Do you think a GoPro on a stick stuck underwater could get good footage? That would be very cool!!
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#495215 - 08/23/18 09:52 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: wbuffetjr]
NEDOC Offline
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Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
Originally Posted By: wbuffetjr
Thanks for the update!

Do you think a GoPro on a stick stuck underwater could get good footage? That would be very cool!!


I think it would after they were acclimated to it. But I don't have a GoPro!!

After thinking it over for a night, I think I'm going to further this experiment and have one of the cages fed hydrated food only, another cage tilapia only and then the third cage I will mix the two types of feed. That way if anyone is ever dumb enough to try this again, they may know which method is better. That is assuming one of the methods is significantly better.
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#495217 - 08/23/18 10:29 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Dave Davidson1 Offline
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Registered: 01/04/06
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This has to be getting $$$.
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#495222 - 08/23/18 11:13 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Itís costing me about $6-7 per week. Cheaper than any of my other hobbies LOL.
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#495269 - 08/24/18 06:14 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Dave Davidson1 Offline
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Registered: 01/04/06
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Heck, that's not bad. I spend more than that daily shooting.
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Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP

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#495339 - 08/25/18 09:51 PM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
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NEDOC - Excellent work and progress so far! Keep us updated.
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#496869 - 09/26/18 11:03 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
NEDOC Offline
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Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 811
Loc: SC Nebraska
So I had one tiger muskie die, and another not looking well so I thought it may be time to release them. I'm suspecting I may have had some nitrate issues in my grow out pond. Not sure how I plan to remedy that going forward. But that's for a different discussion. Anyway, I did get to weigh and measure one that I felt was average. It was 17-17.5" long and 1-8. Which from what I've read is right where they should be at this stage of development. So here's the official end of my first year of raising tiger muskie on tilapia. Hopefully my next photo is of someone catching one next spring. And we do have more on order for next year. So I hope to continue this next year. Thanks for all of the input fellow pondbossers.

PS If someone can find a cooler freshwater predator than a Tiger Muskie, let me know. Just an incredibly beautiful fish. And pretty bad @ss.













Edited by NEDOC (09/26/18 11:05 AM)
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#496871 - 09/26/18 11:13 AM Re: Crazy idea - pen raised tiger muskie.... [Re: NEDOC]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5261
Loc: SE Kansas
Those are some really cool fish. Congrats on a job well done.

I'm amazed that you could raise that many of that size fish in the size grow out pond you have.
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