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#453470 - 08/05/16 04:11 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
Chad Horn Offline


Registered: 07/09/14
Posts: 62
Loc: Central Louisiana
Peachgrower,

I have had Optimal BG in my Texas Hunter for 10 months now with Zero issues. Expensive, but great machine.

Chad

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#453479 - 08/05/16 07:51 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
Dave Davidson1 Offline
Moderator
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Registered: 01/04/06
Posts: 13782
Loc: Hurst & Bowie, Texas
Chad, I agree about expensive. However, others are also expensive and have issues. To me, the TH is an investment and the others are costs.
_________________________
It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

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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#453483 - 08/05/16 08:08 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: peachgrower]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 859
Loc: SC Nebraska
Originally Posted By: peachgrower
I had looked at those, I have a couple old deer feeders that just need the motor/timers. I wanted a texas hunter for Christmas, but I've about decided on aerator parts and just get the american hunter/moultaire motor/timer.

Does it clog up with optimal bg?? Thats what I plan to feed, but can do jr next if needed, but would rather stay with BG. If going that route I would put it on legs out in the pond and just walk out there to fill it. Thinking the aerator would be a better investment and go with the cheaper feeder.


Sorry I missed your question PG. Mine does plug occasionally with Optimal BG, but it doesn't seem to do it anymore than it did with Aquamax 500. As long as you live by your pond and are able to go tap on the feeder occasionally it isn't an issue. I've had the Optimal BG and Optimal BG Jr. mixed in there for about a week now and it seems to feed thru the feeder much better, cast better and is much less likely to plug. If I didn't live by my pond I would fill it with Optimal BG Jr only as I don't think it would plug.

Another thing to think about is getting the non directional deer feeders if you are putting it on legs out in the pond. I don't know from experience, but I'm guessing that would be much less likely to plug than the directional fish feeders. I believe Moultrie essentially has the same units but made for wildlife rather than fish ponds. If you have any other questions I can go looking for you and send you to the product link I am talking about.

What I ended up doing was building a small feeder platform with Tommy Dock parts and putting my feeder out over the water. It isn't terribly costly to do. And I'll bet there are cheaper options than the Tommy Dock parts. Then I put my feeder on that and I use it as a place to sit on and watch the fish feed.
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#453485 - 08/05/16 10:06 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
peachgrower Offline


Registered: 07/02/16
Posts: 420
Loc: Nashville, AR
Thanks guys!!

NEDOC, I would like to look at those links. I think the moultaire would work for me. That is the one in your vid? My pond is around an acre or a little over. I think I will use the plastic barrel off my father in laws deer feeder...then get one of the timers on ebay. I think I'll go non directional and build baffles for it if needed one day. It will be in the middle of the shallow end of the pond. Do you have a solar charger on it? If not how long does it last?

Update on optimal: MAN, I'm going to get a vid this weekend I hope. But in the last few days, they swarm this stuff. I have a small, maybe 6 ft feed ring made out of scrap 1/2" pvc tied to a piece of a cinder block. They home in on that. I throw some around it also for the bashful ones, but they have gotten to where they knock alot of out over the top of the feed ring then the bashful ones get to still eat. These were 2-4" 6 weeks ago and splash like they are way bigger! Its exciting when it finally begins to come together.
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#453500 - 08/05/16 01:32 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 859
Loc: SC Nebraska
Here is the unit I have.......

http://www.moultriefeeders.com/moultrie-30-gallon-feedcaster

Some coons got the best of the wiring on the lower unit so I switched it out and put this one on.......

http://www.moultriefeeders.com/feedcaster-kit

If you are going over the water you may wanna use this lower unit...

http://www.moultriefeeders.com/moultrie-econo-plus-feeder-kit

or

http://www.moultriefeeders.com/pro-magnum-feeder-kit-6-volt

I don't have a charger and mine lasts a couple months.


Also, if looking to build a feeder platform, here are some cheap leg holders to help.....

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Multinautic-Multi-Anchor-Leg-Holder-Dock-Kit-19111/207072390
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#453502 - 08/05/16 01:43 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
peachgrower Offline


Registered: 07/02/16
Posts: 420
Loc: Nashville, AR
Thanks alot! Is the feedcaster the one that you had some clogging issues with? Its directional isn't it? I would think the "deer" style 360 would have less trouble. What do you think? My fish are really hammering the Optimal BG...hate to change it.
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#453506 - 08/05/16 02:22 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: aeb]
aeb Offline


Registered: 05/10/12
Posts: 16
Loc: Texas
Originally Posted By: aeb
Placed an order with Optimal for a couple of bags of BG Friday to try it out. Do they notify you when it is shipped? Tracking number? I received an acknowledgement of the order but my account only shows that the order is being processed. Not in a hurry but need to arrange for someone to be present for delivery.


Order was delivered by FedEx Friday morning as loose bags. Driver apologized and explained that the shipping box arrived in pieces and was unusable. He searched for an invoice in what was left of the packaging but was unable to find one. Optimal also included a couple of small sample bags of the new BG Jr. feed. As expected, the driver was of the opinion that the shipping box was not sufficiently sturdy. Would not expect otherwise from a good company man but am including this in my post in case there is a trend. I'm certainly not complaining because we all have our FedEx and UPS shipping stories.

Looking forward to giving it a test next week. Just filled my Texas Hunter feeder Wednesday with my regular feed and it will take a few days for it to empty. I certainly appreciate the sample bag of the new product.

One other thing concerning Optimal's customer service. I received a phone call from the company advising me my order was being filled. At least I think that iis what the voice said. Thanks to the modern miracles of electronics, we now have answering machines that can totally garble even the most simple messages.



Edited by aeb (08/05/16 02:23 PM)

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#453508 - 08/05/16 02:28 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: peachgrower]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 859
Loc: SC Nebraska
Originally Posted By: peachgrower
Thanks alot! Is the feedcaster the one that you had some clogging issues with? Its directional isn't it? I would think the "deer" style 360 would have less trouble. What do you think? My fish are really hammering the Optimal BG...hate to change it.


Yes I had a few clogging issues but not terrible. I agree with you that the 360 would seem to clog less. Keep us updated.

I'm curious to see how the 360 feedcasting works as I'm tempted to float a feeder in my catfish pond to attract fish for seining.


Edited by NEDOC (08/05/16 02:56 PM)
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#453619 - 08/08/16 09:07 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
SetterGuy Offline


Registered: 10/30/13
Posts: 1419
Loc: NE Missouri
Well, I figured out this weekend what my feeder issue was. The coons had pulled hard enough on the cable going from the solar panel to the battery that they loosened it. The gap led to water leak, from the big rains we've been having lately. When I was up there on Friday, I opened up the feeder, and caught the whiff of rotten feed. I took 5gal buckets down and took out all the wet feed. I was very conservative. Any feed suspected of being wet, or near the wet stuff was discarded.
The feeder worked fine with the "good/dry" feed. It didn't broadcast the same volume in 4 seconds as the older Optima. Easy fix was just to add 8 seconds to the feed time. Now it runs for 12 seconds. Re-sealed the power cable. Hoping for trouble free feeding the rest of the summer. The fish love it, that's for sure. Caught mostly HBG over the weekend, but a few YP also. No SMB, or HSB. Did catch a RES, those are pretty fish.
Water at the surface was pretty warm. Down a few inches though, it was still pretty cool.
_________________________
4 yr old pond, 1 ac, 15' deep.
RES, YP, GS, FHM, HBG, SMB, and HSB..
I think that's about all I should put in my little pond.

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#453998 - 08/14/16 08:03 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: SetterGuy]
esshup Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent

Lunker

Registered: 01/26/09
Posts: 24033
Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
NEDOC, check the spin plate setting on the TH feeder. From the bottom of the feed hopper to the flat portion of the spin plate should be 3/8". You can adjust it down a bit if needed.

Unfortunately, it has to be done with the feeder empty.
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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).

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#454011 - 08/14/16 10:13 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
NEDOC Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/20/04
Posts: 859
Loc: SC Nebraska
Thanks esshup, but the feeder I was referring to above is a cheap Moultrie. The TH feeders rarely plug for me.
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#500936 - 01/20/19 03:15 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
YEEEHIII Offline


Registered: 10/24/18
Posts: 2
Loc: Cherokee GA.
New to the fish feeding game here. I have a 3 to 4 acer lake that is from 15 foot deep to 4 foot. I have had it survayed and the report say I need to feed the Blue Gill / Brim as we call them in Georgia. I have read a lot of the post about feeding. I am still not sure which food is the best value for the money. I am leaning to Optimum. So here are the questions I can't seem to find the answers two.
1. Is optimum the best food value out there?
2. When do I start feeding my fish?
3. How many times and how long do I feed them each day?
thanks in advance for your help and feed back.

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#500937 - 01/20/19 04:44 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
anthropic Offline


Registered: 05/03/14
Posts: 1710
Loc: East Texas, USA
I'm no expert, YEEH, but I do feed my fish Optimal. It is one of the most expensive feeds, so obviously I feel the nutritional value is better than most. However, Purina makes good feeds as well. Either should work well for you.

Based on my experience, I'd say to begin feeding when water (not air!) temps hit 60 or a bit higher. Start in the afternoon when things warm up, as fish are more active then. Later in the heat of summer switch to morning and late evening.

It may take a while for the brim to figure out what's going on, so don't get discouraged if nothing much happens for a couple of weeks. They'll get it eventually! Just don't feed much until they do.

How long? Let the fish tell you. If they finish the feed in less than 5 minutes, feed more. If feed is left over after 10 or 15 minutes, feed less.

One benefit of feeding is the sheer fun of watching them eat. What a blast!
_________________________
8ac E Tx, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17. 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18

There are only 10 types of people; those who understand binary and those who don't




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#500963 - 01/21/19 07:03 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
Dave Davidson1 Offline
Moderator
Lunker

Registered: 01/04/06
Posts: 13782
Loc: Hurst & Bowie, Texas
Lots of good fish foods and a LOT of junk. I'm feeding Optimal and some of us buy in bulk, have it shipped in, and split it. If/when I run out I have no problem with using Purina or Cargill. But, there is also some lesser quality stuff that I stay away from.

The junk is usually found in feed stores and generally costs less. High protein doesn't always equate value. I'm aware of one brand that is heavily dosed with ground up chicken feathers. Feathers are high protein but indigestible by fish.

I use Optimal, Al Hall uses Cargill and Lusk uses Purina. I've fished both of their places. We all raise big, healthy fish.
_________________________
It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

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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#500964 - 01/21/19 07:24 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: YEEEHIII]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5404
Loc: SE Kansas
It may depend on what is available locally. Optimal has the advantage you can easily order it by mail and have delivered to your doorstep.

In my case up until last year if I wanted anything other than the lower protein stuff sold in places like Tractor Supply I had to order it way ahead of time and the reliability of supply was questionable. That has changed more recently with a local feed store stocking Purena Aquamax MVP. Now I feed MVP for my bulk feed but I find the Optimal is handy for any specialty feed I might want such as starter or bass feed, because I can order it easily in smaller amounts.

So I feed both Optimal and Purena.
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John

I subscribe to Pond Boss Magazine

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#500990 - 01/21/19 02:30 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: snrub]
YEEEHIII Offline


Registered: 10/24/18
Posts: 2
Loc: Cherokee GA.
Thanks to all who replied. I had not heard of Cargill, but will look them up.
So I wait till 60 degree water and start feeding once a day till they figure it out than look at maybe twice a day. Make sure there is enough on the table to last approximately 10 mins of feeding. Thanks for the info. It seems like purina is a multi purpose feed. My lake has more bass in it then Brim. So It was recommended to feed just the brim. I will check out the Cargill feed. I do have a local feed store close by and will see what he stocks.
Next is weather to airreate (yes I know I spelled it wrong but not as bad as Seri di when I ask her)or not.
Thanks for the info

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#501005 - 01/21/19 08:05 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: YEEEHIII]
Pat Williamson Offline


Registered: 08/08/14
Posts: 2648
Loc: Oakwood,Texas
Originally Posted By: YEEEHIII
Thanks to all who replied. I had not heard of Cargill, but will look them up.
So I wait till 60 degree water and start feeding once a day till they figure it out than look at maybe twice a day. Make sure there is enough on the table to last approximately 10 mins of feeding. Thanks for the info. It seems like purina is a multi purpose feed. My lake has more bass in it then Brim. So It was recommended to feed just the brim. I will check out the Cargill feed. I do have a local feed store close by and will see what he stocks.
Next is weather to airreate (yes I know I spelled it wrong but not as bad as Seri di when I ask her)or not.
Thanks for the info

I use cargill 4512 and have had good luck with it. The fish seem to really like it over the stuff you get at Tractor Supply

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#501028 - 01/22/19 12:08 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: YEEEHIII]
anthropic Offline


Registered: 05/03/14
Posts: 1710
Loc: East Texas, USA
Originally Posted By: YEEEHIII
Thanks to all who replied. I had not heard of Cargill, but will look them up.
So I wait till 60 degree water and start feeding once a day till they figure it out than look at maybe twice a day. Make sure there is enough on the table to last approximately 10 mins of feeding. Thanks for the info. It seems like purina is a multi purpose feed. My lake has more bass in it then Brim. So It was recommended to feed just the brim. I will check out the Cargill feed. I do have a local feed store close by and will see what he stocks.
Next is weather to airreate (yes I know I spelled it wrong but not as bad as Seri di when I ask her)or not.
Thanks for the info


One other thing: During the heat of summer, don't feed at the crack of dawn. Low oxygen levels could mean trouble. Wait for a couple of hours of sunlight when oxy levels are up. Evening feeding can be as late as you want, even darkness, with no such issue.
_________________________
8ac E Tx, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17. 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18

There are only 10 types of people; those who understand binary and those who don't




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#501044 - 01/22/19 09:40 AM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
DannyMac Offline


Registered: 04/15/18
Posts: 95
Loc: Bexar county Texas
My first bag of quality food was from Cargill, supposedly delivered from the "mill." It has a massive ten pound clump of molded feed right in the middle of the bag...how in hell can this be...I removed the bad stuff and fed the remainder. Then I saw on here the danger represented by molded feed.
Purina feed: a local store is a dealer, but all they had was one bag of lower quality, saying that nobody buys expensive fish food. Otherwise, the shipping charge is more than the original price, working out to about $4 per pound.

Optimal Bluegill: Free shipping from the source. The fish love it...bluegills and catfish and even Gambusia...small fish nibble it...and a few of my bass took to it also. When the catfish are up on the surface, I'll throw them the low quality Gamefish food from Tractor Supply.
_________________________
Dan McWhirter



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#501157 - 01/24/19 04:54 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: DannyMac]
BrianL Offline


Registered: 03/31/14
Posts: 788
Loc: Paris, TX

I would suggest to keep looking for a feed store that can order AM 500 or 600. It cost me about $0.75/lb



Originally Posted By: DannyMac
My first bag of quality food was from Cargill, supposedly delivered from the "mill." It has a massive ten pound clump of molded feed right in the middle of the bag...how in hell can this be...I removed the bad stuff and fed the remainder. Then I saw on here the danger represented by molded feed.
Purina feed: a local store is a dealer, but all they had was one bag of lower quality, saying that nobody buys expensive fish food. Otherwise, the shipping charge is more than the original price, working out to about $4 per pound.

Optimal Bluegill: Free shipping from the source. The fish love it...bluegills and catfish and even Gambusia...small fish nibble it...and a few of my bass took to it also. When the catfish are up on the surface, I'll throw them the low quality Gamefish food from Tractor Supply.




Edited by BrianL (01/24/19 04:55 PM)
_________________________
1.8 acre pond with FHM(gone), CNBG, RES, HSB, and LMB
Trophy Hunter feeder.

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#501160 - 01/24/19 07:46 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
Bill Cody Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent

Lunker

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12769
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
I think(?) that the lower quality Purina feeds (pond gamefish chow, Purina catfish feed, Aquamax Pond 2000 & 4000) and the Aquamax high protein series Fry powder thru AM Sportfish 600 are produced or at least stocked at their main plants. Thus when a retailer orders Purina fish food the special order bags all should be able to be placed on one shipping pallet order. At least that is how my Purina retailer received my AM feed orders. I had to tell my retailer how to do it. Maybe it would help if you called the plant or the Purina sales representative for information where your retailer orders his fish food?


Edited by Bill Cody (01/24/19 07:51 PM)
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#501164 - 01/24/19 08:47 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1991
Loc: West Michigan
Bill, tell me about this Aquamax 4000 stuff? My local Family Farm and Home chain store can get some purina foods judging by their web page. Their web page only has pond gamefish chow and Aquamax 4000. What is the 4000? It appears to be a single size, small pellet floating feed that is high protein, low fat. But I can't see the tag for protein source and in the fine print online it says it is just fine for herbivores and carnivores and then says it is targeted for catfish and tilapia?

Strangely they don't list the 'better' options, they don't list MVP, and then they do list 'largemouth' which I assume is a very specialized large pellet size feed?

Their web page does not indicate what any local store might actually stock and it sounds like special orders, 1 bag at a time is the rule.

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#501167 - 01/24/19 09:01 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
John Fitzgerald Offline


Registered: 10/27/15
Posts: 2152
Loc: S. end of Elkins, Arkansas
All we can get here is "Catfish Pellets" at about $20 per 50 pound bag, or the "Game Fish Food" sold by Tractor Supply, at about $13 for 25 pounds, but it's often out of date. Optimal, at $50 for 40 pounds, is too much for me to feed regularly. So, I mostly feed "Catfish Pellets".
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#501168 - 01/24/19 09:02 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: esshup]
Bill Cody Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent

Lunker

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12769
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
I think the AM4000 is a protein food 36%P/6%F 3/16" designed as noted for catfish and tilapia whereas the AM2000 is 32%P/3%f 5/16" pellet. I think a lot of the purina retailers don't know a lot about the Purina types of fish foods. Sometimes we need to educate the retailers and sometimes contact their Purina sales rep to get the food we are interested in having. I am pretty confident that if the right contact channels are used any Purina retailer can get any Purina feed at reasonable cost. Extra shipping cost of getting Purina fish food sounds naive of the possibilities.


Edited by Bill Cody (01/24/19 09:08 PM)
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#501174 - 01/24/19 11:11 PM Re: Optimal Bluegill fish food [Re: Bill Cody]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 5404
Loc: SE Kansas
Here is a Purina web page that has links to the different aquatic feeds.

Purena aquatic feeds

All fish products

John


Edited by Bill Cody (01/25/19 10:36 AM)
Edit Reason: spell correct
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