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#492127 - 06/18/18 06:32 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
wbuffetjr Online   content


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 806
Loc: in the mountains
About 95% sure all the fish are dead. Headed out there 6/23. Will make some improvements to the current set up, gather a ton of data, put some more fish in and get ready to give this coming Winter another shot. Will post pics and data when I get back.

If you count the Winters I have been working on this, so far it is: Winter - 4
me - 0
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#492128 - 06/18/18 06:38 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
DrLuke Offline


Registered: 06/04/15
Posts: 333
Loc: Grinnell, IA
Dang it! I was wishing and hoping a few got through.
I'm not discounting the disappointment and expense of your trials and tribulations for the past 4 seasons. But there have been some pretty amazing success stories that actually were preceded but a ton of failures....er....experience, before getting on track. I'm thinking about a guy named Edison, or a guy named Jordan.

Hang tough pard. I have no doubt you'll get there.
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#492137 - 06/18/18 10:20 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
highflyer Offline


Registered: 07/09/11
Posts: 1854
Loc: East Texas
It may be 4-0, but you have opposable thumbs and a secret weapon!

This year is your year, and I am not convinced they are all morts. I want proof!
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Brian

The one thing is the one thing
A dry fly catches no fish
Try not to be THAT 10%

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#492164 - 06/19/18 10:29 AM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
wbuffetjr Online   content


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 806
Loc: in the mountains
Thanks Fellas!
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#492976 - 06/29/18 06:25 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
highflyer Offline


Registered: 07/09/11
Posts: 1854
Loc: East Texas
I just found out there are FISH ALIVE!!!

SO its winter 3, JR 1.
_________________________
Brian

The one thing is the one thing
A dry fly catches no fish
Try not to be THAT 10%

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#492998 - 06/30/18 09:33 AM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
Mike Whatley Offline


Registered: 04/22/18
Posts: 296
Loc: Louisiana
Woo Hoo!!!!
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.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epidomy of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, FHM, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia and apparently, now crappie.

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#493010 - 06/30/18 02:12 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
TGW1 Offline


Registered: 09/19/14
Posts: 2362
Loc: Harrison Co. Texas
Thanks for posting up Brian, that is good to hear. You, young man have done a good neighborly thing! So, any more to add, like what type and any idea on any numbers of survivors?
_________________________
Do not judge me by the politicians in my City, State or Federal Government.
Thank The Good Lord the government in Washington DC gets little done.
Outlawing guns will make a lot of us down here in the South
Outlaws and proud of it

Tracy

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#493033 - 06/30/18 10:59 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
highflyer Offline


Registered: 07/09/11
Posts: 1854
Loc: East Texas
I have not heard about any numbers, but I was told that the fish "turned on" a few days ago. I hear that at times, several have hit the surface at the same time. And the fish that have been caught/seen are very healthy. All in all, there are smiles up in the mountains!
_________________________
Brian

The one thing is the one thing
A dry fly catches no fish
Try not to be THAT 10%

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#493731 - 07/14/18 01:04 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
highflyer Offline


Registered: 07/09/11
Posts: 1854
Loc: East Texas
Just got an update.

The crawdads also made it through the winter. It looks like this is the first year for that as well.

There is a lot of excitement up in the mountains these days.
_________________________
Brian

The one thing is the one thing
A dry fly catches no fish
Try not to be THAT 10%

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#493743 - 07/14/18 08:40 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
canyoncreek Online   content


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1799
Loc: West Michigan
Can't wait to hear more about what worked this year given all the apparent set backs.

I wonder if this unusual year with very little snow also helped keep sunlight hitting the plants through the ice and keeping some oxygen production going.

If next year it is back to heavy ice and thick snow then everything will be riding on the solar powered aerators again.

Can't wait to see pictures and hear more!

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#493789 - 07/15/18 11:22 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
highflyer Offline


Registered: 07/09/11
Posts: 1854
Loc: East Texas
Canyon,

The ice was very thick this year. There was a fair amount of snow on the ice for the winter months. Having the solar powered aeration got things through the toughest times. The second windmill seemed to add just enough air after the solar powered system iced up to carry the day until ice off. At least that is my guess so far. I'll be heading up next weekend to help with a few upgrades and I should have more data after that.

All in all, what a ride!
_________________________
Brian

The one thing is the one thing
A dry fly catches no fish
Try not to be THAT 10%

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#494605 - 08/07/18 01:56 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
wbuffetjr Online   content


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 806
Loc: in the mountains
Well, back from the mountains.

The trout did indeed survive and seem to be thriving. No idea of numbers of trout that survived. They are extremely well fed and HARD to catch! We produced one single fish after about 12 hours of fishing. This fish was stocked late July 2017 as a 10-12" Brook Trout. It endured some pretty bad water quality Summer 2017 and a pretty rough Winter of 2017 and still turned into this. Of course, we had no scale and no tape measure at the point we finally caught one. Will be better prepared next time. I have to ASS-UME the ROW of this fish was pretty good!




Overall, the lake is doing much better than I have ever seen it. There are even MORE scuds than I have ever seen. They are absolutely EVERYWHERE! You can lift one clump of grass or turn over one rock and there is a pile of scuds. The situation seems the same with the fatheads - more than I ever remember seeing. We also have a lot of crayfish - VERY large crayfish. Still leeches everywhere but hopefully the trout start to knock them back some. Unfortunately, I doubt that leeches taste as good as shrimp or fish and I am assuming the leeches will be around for a while!

I am still experimenting with the aeration. We are currently running the small Thomas 2660 1/2 HP pump only. It is pushing one quad and two dual vertex diffusers. The pump runs from 12:00am until 8:00am everyday. It was hotter up there than I have ever seen it and it is showing in the water temps. Our water level is now down almost 18" instead of the normal 2" or 3". I am trying to walk the line between adequate aeration and keeping water temps as low as possible. Brook Trout prefer the coldest water of all trout and I feel like we are pushing the high end of their range. Good news is we are heading into the Fall with higher than ever DO numbers.

Here is a DO comparison. For some reason I did not get Summer 2016 DO data. I did not have the DO meter for Summer 2015. Not a totally accurate comparison, but it's the best I have.



Big thanks to Highflyer and his wife. They came up for a couple days and helped me correct our problem that crippled us last Winter with the airline/valve box. The length of airline was reduced by ~50% and put on grade all the way down to the valve box. The weighted airline then leaves the valve box buried on grade all the way down into 4' or 5' of water. The valve box is also about 2' deeper than before. All this lead to a ~2PSI reduction in system pressure by eliminating the built up condensation in the line.


Edited by wbuffetjr (08/07/18 02:02 PM)
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#494607 - 08/07/18 02:22 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
TGW1 Offline


Registered: 09/19/14
Posts: 2362
Loc: Harrison Co. Texas
Sounds great. Trout growth seems to be exceptional, maybe doubling in size in one year. looks like you have a down hill road from here. I know you said you are not sure of how many trout are there but with the fantastic trout growth and all the food you tell of and with only one caught after 12 hrs of fishing, I would think low numbers of trout due to personal experience my first year of raising lmb. Having low numbers gave some exceptional growth to the bass. So, did you see anything (like surface feeding or such) that might lead you to believe there are decent numbers of trout in the pond? I also know high forage rates will slow down catch rates, so how are you feeling about trout numbers?
_________________________
Do not judge me by the politicians in my City, State or Federal Government.
Thank The Good Lord the government in Washington DC gets little done.
Outlawing guns will make a lot of us down here in the South
Outlaws and proud of it

Tracy

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#494610 - 08/07/18 02:48 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
wbuffetjr Online   content


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 806
Loc: in the mountains
I only stocked 300 Brook Trout from a hatchery in Summer 2017. When they were active this Summer there would be fish hitting all around the lake. My buddy threw out one of those fish finders you pull around with a fishing pole and saw groups of up to 6 "fish" (if that is actually what it was seeing). I really don't know where to begin as far as a guess on numbers. I do know 300 fish in 7 acres is not many to start with. We did stock an additional 40 native Brook Trout this year.
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#494663 - 08/09/18 07:29 AM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
TGW1 Offline


Registered: 09/19/14
Posts: 2362
Loc: Harrison Co. Texas
Cool! Got any idea when they might pull off a spawn? Water temps and time of year up there in those mts?
_________________________
Do not judge me by the politicians in my City, State or Federal Government.
Thank The Good Lord the government in Washington DC gets little done.
Outlawing guns will make a lot of us down here in the South
Outlaws and proud of it

Tracy

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#494683 - 08/09/18 01:10 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: TGW1]
wbuffetjr Online   content


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 806
Loc: in the mountains
Originally Posted By: TGW1
Cool! Got any idea when they might pull off a spawn? Water temps and time of year up there in those mts?


Tracy - They should start spawn in October and eggs normally hatch in January or sometime after depending on water temps. Lower water temps lead to later egg hatching. With us seeing water temps down in the 32 degree range last Winter I am assuming any hatch would happen pretty late.

Now, whether or not they can find a naturally occurring spot to lay the eggs that will allow the eggs to hatch is the big question. They require water "upwelling" through gravel for their eggs to hatch. I am hoping that somewhere in the 7 acres they can find a spot that will work. It should be very apparent if they do spawn. I should not currently have a single Brook Trout under 10" in the lake.

While we have a relatively small population of fish and such a rich forage base I have been trying to get out ahead with adding habitat - habitat that won't decompose. I am hoping to add enough habitat early enough I can keep the forage base from getting decimated. We added many MANY tons of rip rap to our peninsula this Summer. We also went around and gathered up about 12 big boulders, 5' or so diamaters, and pushed them off the side of the peninsula. Most of the boulders rolled off into deeper water. Some sit a foot or two below the surface. A couple of them we placed so they would stick out of the water. Unfortunately, the pics don't do ANY justice to the size of the boulders you can see. The good thing is we don't have a shortage of rocks or boulders......

*side note - If anyone notices in the pics, we did have some Eurasian Milfoil try to move in. Treated it with Aquathol. Definitely not letting that take hold.

One side of peninsula


Other side of peninsula. When water comes back up to full pool all the small rip rap will be underwater or right at the surface.


The boy playing in the mud on "his rock". I was hoping to have this boulder stick out of the water a couple inches to be able to stand on it and fish. Unfortunately, it sunk a little further than planned and now will be a few inches under water.
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#494727 - 08/10/18 12:28 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
Bill Cody Offline
Moderator
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Lunker

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12416
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Big congratulations for finally achieving fish survival during extreme winter conditions. Things now will hopefully keep improving!
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#494729 - 08/10/18 01:09 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
NEDOC Online   content
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 749
Loc: SC Nebraska
This has been an awesome thread. Thanks for taking the time to update it.
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#494737 - 08/10/18 05:07 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
canyoncreek Online   content


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1799
Loc: West Michigan
...the troubling sentence in your last post was the fact that Eurasian milfoil was found in your lake!

How in the world does an invasive weed find its way to a secluded lake at high altitude and in a harsh environment? Could it have come with water that contained the fish that you stocked?

Or do birds visit your lake and have remains or seeds in their excrement?

we are all sunk if your lake has the same milfoil problems with all it has going for it to prevent invasive species!

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#494745 - 08/10/18 09:24 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
snrub Online   content


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 4942
Loc: SE Kansas
Great news of the fish over wintering. Great thread.
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#494761 - 08/11/18 02:04 PM Re: 8 acre pond at 10,000' - lots of aeration ?s [Re: wbuffetjr]
wbuffetjr Online   content


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 806
Loc: in the mountains
Thanks guys. I appreciate all the advice, guidance, interest and support over the years. Couldn't have done any of it without this forum! Very exciting times for us for sure.

As far as the Eurasian Milfoil.... We do get quite a few ducks in the Summers. I am assuming they bring all kinds of stuff in with them. I could be wrong, but I assume that if I stay on it early and knock it out before it gets crazy it shouldn't be that bad to deal with??
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