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#509448 - 07/28/19 08:47 AM New guy and new SoIN pond
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
Hello PB!

My name is Paul and my wife and I recently had a pond completed on property we own in Clark County, IN. The pond is kidney shaped, a max of 12' deep, and (best guess) between 1/3 and 1/2 acre of surface area. I have put in a pea gravel beach along half of the eastern bank where it is most shallow extending 8-10' into the water, and in the coming weeks we will build a dock adjacent to this pea gravel beach. I also plan to place some structure into the pond near-term, as well as set up aeration with a HP100LL pump and a single 9" diffuser. Figure it'll be a lot easier to get this stuff done before it fills with water...

It'll take a while for the pond to naturally fill, but hopefully it will be possible to stock with fish in spring 2020. The property is 20 minutes from my house, so I don't mind a moderate level of management and I plan to supplemental pellet feed for at least the first year to help establish the fishery and stimulate growth.

Based on my research so far, I am thinking the following mix of fish:

15lb FHM
40 LMB, 4-7"
200 BG, 3-5"
100 HBG, 3-5"
100 RES, 3-5"
20 CC, 6-8"
2 TGC
100 tadpoles

Nothing is set in stone yet, so I greatly appreciate any thoughts, feedback, or criticism of the plan and look forward to participating and learning!



Edited by Paul FNG (07/28/19 08:49 AM)

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#509449 - 07/28/19 10:26 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Quarter Acre Online   content


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 1514
Loc: West Central Missouri
Welcome to the forums Paul!

I sounds like you are off to a good start. Off the cuff, it looks like your fish numbers are in a good range compared to other stocking plans I have seen here at PB. I would highly recommend seeding the pond with the FHM as soon as possible and giving them a season to multiply. Just a few pounds in the spring and by the end of summer they will make thousands and thousands more. It is very hard to wait, I know, but this does two things...it makes alot of free food for the forthcoming fish and it gets the bio cycle of the pond up and going. You will not regret it. I believe the growth rate of the game fish from the abundant minnows makes up for not stocking the game fish the first year. (somebody else back me up here!)

Here's my proof...

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=38025&Number=494998#Post494998

And, you might be surprised how many frogs and toads make your pond their home that first season without any game fish stocked. My pond had so many species of tadpoles and the overall numbers were staggering.

Before you buy any aeration equipment, do you homework. I don't think you will be happy with that small of a pump on that size of a pond. It's only rated for a pond depth of about 4 feet and with the diffuser at that depth...you won't be moving much water. Here are a few threads where I explore and discuss my aeration system with some calculations and such. I think you will find them a good jump start on your quest...

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=37540&Number=489945#Post489945

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=38024&Number=494996#Post494996

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=491318

Keep in mind that I am still learning and experimenting with the whole aeration concept.

The first step towards aeration design is to determine your pond size in surface area then how many gallons it will have. There are pond size calculators on the web to help. You will want to turn the pond over at least once a day and you may find that you only run it at night to avoid overheating the water, this will mean turning it over once in an 8 hour period or so.

A couple more things to think about...consider HSB and HBG instead of LMB and BG for more controlled pond populations. It does not suit everyone's goals, just something to explore. AND, wait on the TGS until you need them, if you ever do. Your fine tuned stocking numbers and when the individual species go in will be determined by your goals...do you want to try and grow bigger bass or bigger panfish?
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#509456 - 07/28/19 12:41 PM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Bocomo Offline


Registered: 05/06/12
Posts: 1229
Loc: Boone County, MO (pond)
Check in with Esshup (Scott) over at Hoosier Pond Pros asap to go over your goals and stocking plan. He's a Pond Boss guy.

Add structure and cover to ~20-25% of the surface area. This amounts to A LOT of work when it's already filled with water.
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#509466 - 07/28/19 09:35 PM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Joey Quarry Offline


Registered: 11/04/17
Posts: 147
Loc: Wisconsin
Quarter Acre gives good advice. Allowing the FHM a head start to create a strong pond cycle and reproduce, is sound logic. They can be the "Canary in the coal mine", just in case, and you won't have to feed the predators for some time. Plus, they eat mosquito larvae.

This is also the stage to start thinking about the environment around the pond. No matter what you plant or if you allow mother nature to do her thing, don't use fertilizers.

The one thing I advocate is testing your water and keeping a spreadsheet with not just the parameters tested but the conditions of the test. For less than $100 you can get a Dissolved Oxygen and pond test kit (nitrates, ammonia, Ph, phosphates) and it will take enough tests for 3 years if stored properly. You'll then know if your pond has the water quality to proceed with the planned stocking and the health of fish that are in it.
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#509693 - 08/02/19 08:12 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Quarter Acre]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
Thanks for the insight!

Originally Posted By: Quarter Acre
Your fine tuned stocking numbers and when the individual species go in will be determined by your goals...do you want to try and grow bigger bass or bigger panfish?


I'm probably like most new pond owners - I want to have my cake and eat it, too.

In a perfect world, I'll have a handful of 3-5lb LMB but also have some 9" BG/HBG among smaller fish of both species. I'm realistic enough to know there's only so much biomass a 2/5-ish acre pond can support, and that you typically need BG overpopulation to support large bass and LMB overpopulation to support large gills.

I don't mind spending some time managing populations to maintain a semblance of balance, though if I'm honest I'd probably trend toward slightly more panfish.

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#509696 - 08/02/19 10:16 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Bill Cody Online   content
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You can use fertilizer on the areas for grass,,, just use only nitrogen fertilizer with no or very little phosphorus as the 1st number(0-XX-XX). P is the main pond weed/algae stimulus. Reduce or eliminate fertilizer application rate in areas that directly drain into the pond. Use oats or annual rye mixed in with the grass seed to get it growing well for fall. Good time to plant grass in IN is late August early Sept. If the existing soil will grow weeds it will grow grass with little extra fertilizer.

Good idea was to research "consider HSB and HBG"; if you pellet feed maybe a 1:3 or 1:5 ratio HSB:HBG. Higher numbers of HSB will keep offspring of HBG strongly consumed. Some RES stocked initially will keep snails controlled - a good thing to reduce fish parasites in your remotely monitored pond. Your current planed LMB:sunfish ratio is 1:10. You can always add HBG or HSB as needed to achive the desired balance. You can always add BG-LMB later when you think the need arises; they will eventually reproduce to dominate the fishery. Pellet trained yellow perch will co-exist well with HSB-HBG. YP can easily grow to 14" in your pellet fed fishery. Be aware if you pellet feed this boosts the carrying capacity and when pellets are feed the "artificial" high fish biomass should be reduced when the pellet feeding stops or is reduced. You can add YP to your current stocking plan just reduce the number of sunfish for every YP stocked.


Edited by Bill Cody (08/02/19 10:26 AM)
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#509700 - 08/02/19 11:22 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Bocomo Offline


Registered: 05/06/12
Posts: 1229
Loc: Boone County, MO (pond)
Originally Posted By: Paul FNG
Thanks for the insight!

Originally Posted By: Quarter Acre
Your fine tuned stocking numbers and when the individual species go in will be determined by your goals...do you want to try and grow bigger bass or bigger panfish?


I'm probably like most new pond owners - I want to have my cake and eat it, too.

In a perfect world, I'll have a handful of 3-5lb LMB but also have some 9" BG/HBG among smaller fish of both species. I'm realistic enough to know there's only so much biomass a 2/5-ish acre pond can support, and that you typically need BG overpopulation to support large bass and LMB overpopulation to support large gills.

I don't mind spending some time managing populations to maintain a semblance of balance, though if I'm honest I'd probably trend toward slightly more panfish.



For such a small pond managing reproducing species will be a constant headache. Consider managing for put-and-take fishing with hybrids of limited reproductive potential. For example, if you ladder stock hybrid striped bass and/or hybrid bluegill and feed pellets you'll get tackle-busting good fishing and eating with limited hands-on management. I've seen (and felt and eaten) the results!

Seriously, call one of the Pond Boss pros. The conversation about stocking strategy will be free to you and potentially save you money and a big headache down the road.


EDIT: I should add -- QuarterAcre might be too modest to brag but you should check his posts for pictures of his HSB and HBG from his 1/4 ac pond!


Edited by Bocomo (08/02/19 11:34 AM)
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#509713 - 08/02/19 07:31 PM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
I think I understand the benefit of HSB and HBG in a smaller pond, from a position of much lower recruitment and potential overpopulation. I also have read that HSB will put up a heck of a fight when hooked, even compared to LMB, and that they are also tasty to eat. Same with HBG - larger and more aggressive than regular bluegill.

That said, I think I still want some LMB and bluegill...even though I understand they will eventually dominate the fishery. I understand I will have to remove fish from the pond to maintain balance, and am looking forward to eating fish with my boys that were caught in our pond.

In the interest of delaying a takeover by reproducing species, how does the following adjusted stock list look in terms of mix & quantity for a pond in the 0.3-0.4 acre range? Again, I would plan to supplement feed for the first year or so (Optimal Junior, Bluegill, then maybe Bass?).

15lb FHM, stocked at least 2 months before fish
200 HBG 3-5"
100 RES 4-5"
100 BG 3-5"
20 HSB 4-7"
20 LMB 4-7"
10 CC 6-8"

I'll wait to see if I need any TGC before stocking them.



I was able to sneak away today and start making/placing some structure with natural logs and pallets; need to secure them with cinder blocks. Probably also need to get some creek rock or rip-rap and make some rockpiles. Also thinking of taking a half-dozen 8-10' sections of 3-4" trees that were removed and placing them vertically in 5gal buckets with concrete to simulate flooded tree trunks - good idea/bad idea/not necessary idea?

Pond has 6" of water in the deepest section after roughly 0.3" of rain earlier this week...not forecast to get a lot of rain in the next couple weeks, so time to make hay while the sun shines.
Planning to get my dock built (two 6'x12' sections as a T, just to the right of the pea gravel in picture), more structure placed, and the aerator set up before TOO much more water.

Again, I greatly appreciate all the feedback and insight here!


Edited by Paul FNG (08/02/19 07:32 PM)

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#509853 - 08/06/19 08:53 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
Yesterday I was able to get files from a friend with a DJI Phantom 4 Pro that were filmed a week and a half ago; the clearing around the barn in the first picture is 0.35-0.4a per Google Earth measurement for scale, and the barn is 36x48.



Second picture shows the overall contour of the pond; along the east bank (top of pic) you can see some pea gravel we had dumped for a kayak launch and spawn habitat around the dock.



This past Sunday I was able to get about 1/3 done with our dock, which will be two 6x12s in a T configuration...I hope to complete it by this weekend. At normal full pool, depth at the very end of the dock should be 4' or so. This pic was taken 6 days after we received the rain mentioned upthread; depth was holding steady around 6" despite sunny, dry and upper 80s/low 90s temps.



I initially was thinking a single 9" diffuser for the pond would be sufficient, but after research I'm now thinking two 9" diffusers, placed either side of the current water, on 4' risers (I like the DIY concrete base with PVC pipe risers I've seen on here) which should put them at 6-8' depth at full pool waterline.

I might be able to get by with a Hiblow 120LL (I like its low noise and relative energy efficiency given power will be run from my off-grid solar barn, though I do have three additional panels/600w total PV to install) with diffusers at 6-8' depths, but am also now considering a Gast 0523 or AT05. Either Gast is less money than a Hiblow 150/200 and seems to spec better for 10' diffuser depths, but I am a bit concerned about their power consumption and noise level. I am admittedly a bit torn between "buy once cry once" and "some aeration, even if not mathematically perfect, is going to be better than no aeration whatsoever."

Would 15lb of FHM stocked two months before the panfish (if not also the bass and CC) be 'too many' FHM given their recruitment? My desire is to provide a large forage base to help support rapid initial fish growth.

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#509856 - 08/06/19 09:53 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Quarter Acre Online   content


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 1514
Loc: West Central Missouri

Originally Posted By: Paul FNG
I am admittedly a bit torn between "buy once cry once" and "some aeration, even if not mathematically perfect, is going to be better than no aeration whatsoever."


To little aeration is NOT better than nothing. It can worsen the water quality if not sized to a bare minimum and don't forget that you will likely end up only running at night and not have all 24 hours of a day to turn your water.

Give me your surface area and average depth and I can suggest some minimum and more ideal requirements for the number of diffusers and pump output.

Originally Posted By: Paul FNG
Would 15lb of FHM stocked two months before the panfish (if not also the bass and CC) be 'too many' FHM given their recruitment? My desire is to provide a large forage base to help support rapid initial fish growth.


This really depends on when the minnows go in. Late in the year and you might as well spend the money on pellet feed, you'll get more for your money. Late in the year does not let them reproduce much if at all. Seriously, the FHM's need to go in the pond in late April/early May and left to do there thing until the following spring, then add the game fish. Lots of pallets (15 to 20 for your size pond) under 1 to 3 foot of water makes them very happy and prolific! Here's my thoughts on "why" do it this way. If the FHM's go in in the spring and only have 2 months, you'll get alot of fry, but not so many full grown adults (the fry will be eaten quickly by the smaller gamefish). If given all summer, the fry grow to be adults and the following year your gamefish are to small to eat the adults, but will grow big on the massive amounts of YOY FHM fry. Now the adults are left to make more fry and are left to feed the game fish as they grow to be able to eat the large sizes. You get two seasons of forage compared to one.
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#509858 - 08/06/19 10:30 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Quarter Acre]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
Originally Posted By: Quarter Acre
To little aeration is NOT better than nothing. It can worsen the water quality if not sized to a bare minimum and don't forget that you will likely end up only running at night and not have all 24 hours of a day to turn your water.


I'm going to show my ignorance here, but how would even a minimal amount of aeration be detrimental to water quality compared to no aeration at all? I would think adding any oxygen to a pond, and turning over any quantity of water, would overall be more beneficial to the ecosystem than stagnation.

Quote:
Give me your surface area and average depth and I can suggest some minimum and more ideal requirements for the number of diffusers and pump output.


I'm not certain, but believe it is in the ballpark of 0.4 surface acre with an average depth of 6, maybe 7'.

Quote:
This really depends on when the minnows go in. Late in the year and you might as well spend the money on pellet feed, you'll get more for your money. Late in the year does not let them reproduce much if at all. Seriously, the FHM's need to go in the pond in late April/early May and left to do there thing until the following spring, then add the game fish. Lots of pallets (15 to 20 for your size pond) under 1 to 3 foot of water makes them very happy and prolific! Here's my thoughts on "why" do it this way. If the FHM's go in in the spring and only have 2 months, you'll get alot of fry, but not so many full grown adults (the fry will be eaten quickly by the smaller gamefish). If given all summer, the fry grow to be adults and the following year your gamefish are to small to eat the adults, but will grow big on the massive amounts of YOY FHM fry. Now the adults are left to make more fry and are left to feed the game fish as they grow to be able to eat the large sizes. You get two seasons of forage compared to one.


Your posts on this forum have all been exceedingly helpful, but specifically with FHM I have read your "Fathead Minnow Population" thread and used it to shape my thoughts.

You stocked 3.5lb of FHM into your 0.25a pond in April 2017, and one year later in April 2018 stocked 500 HBG, 50 RES and 40 HSB. You gave your FHM a year to recruit, providing a strong forage base.

What I'm thinking is late March/early April 2020 placing 4x as many FHM into my 0.4a pond as you did your 0.25a pond, and instead of giving them a full year to recruit, two months. I'm hoping that by stocking a larger amount initially, I can shorten the lead time you experienced and still have a strong population of both adults and fry when gamefish are stocked. Essentially, I'd get to the similar place you got with regards to FHM, but trading less time for higher investment.

I definitely have more work to do on structure/habitat...that'll come after the dock gets complete.

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#509859 - 08/06/19 10:33 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Bill Cody Online   content
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12925
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
PaulFNG - Limited aeration and depth of mixing. Diffusers on pedestals to my experience do not mix water across the lower bottom areas due mainly to the temperature gradient water density differences. What do you think is going to happen to all the sunken leaf drop from all the trees surrounding your pond?. In similar situations I have seen up to 1 ft of leaves accumulate each year in a pond. To get sunken leaves to even come close to decomposing in one year, lots of full depth pond aeration is needed. Thick layers of sunken leaves causes 'unnatural' amounts of dissolved oxygen consumption from the overlying water.

Decomposition without DO causes anoxic black sediments especially below the leaf layer that very slowly(-30-40X) decay and produce toxic hydrogen sulfide gas that is uninhabitable to invertebrate decomposers.
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#509862 - 08/06/19 11:41 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Quarter Acre Online   content


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 1514
Loc: West Central Missouri
A quick look at your pond size and plan for two 9" Vertex diffusers @ 6 foot water depth tells me that you are on the right track for at least one turn over in 6 hours. Nice work!

The back pressure on such a system would be in the neighborhood of 5 psi and would require about 2 to 3 CFM. The Hiblow 120LL wants to run just under 3 psi (dotted yellow line) and would only produce 2 CFM at 5 psi.



It would work, but it would be working pretty hard and this would cut into it's life span. And, it would just be meeting the minimum requirement turning the pond over in a 6 to 8 hour night time run. Going deeper with just one of the diffusers could be a pump killer and don;t think about using line with less than 5/8" inner diameter. This system would be on the edge of not working well, especially for nightime only runs.

I tend to over design things, if you have not noticed, and would prefer using a larger more robust pump. But it would mean more money up front...

The Gast 0523 would put out just over 4 CFM at 5 psi and would be too much for just 2 vertex diffusers IMO. It works nicely with three and could run 4 hence more diffusers/lines/valves/etc = more money. I believe the Matala diffusers are rated for higher air flow, but I do not have any experience with them in my pond.



These recommendations are all based on a 850,000 gallon BOW, 6.5 foot average depth, with the diffusers set 6 feet below the surface. Change any of this and the results move around, maybe better, maybe worse. Move the diffusers up and the pump works less hard, but you move less water too which takes longer to turn the pond.

The recent Pond Boss mag has an article in it that talks about DIY pond stuff where it describes, briefly, what happens when too little aeration in put into place. I'll paraphrase (and add a little)...

If the water movement created by the system can not keep up with the constant production of "bad water" from the depths of the pond, then all it's doing is bringing bad water up making the good upper water worse.

As far as the FHM installments, putting more minnows in initially will get you more minnows in a shorter period, BUT it cuts it off at the knees, so to speak, for the long run. Their reproduction rates are exponential, meaning the longer they are allowed to reproduce, the more reproduction you get per unit time. AND, I believe FHM's can start breeding at 3 months of age and re-breed every 5 days after that. You can see how 2 months of time in the pond is not as productive as 5 months.

There is a difference between your 2 month plan and a full year plan. It's not wrong either way, it all depends on what level you are shooting for. How much you want to push the envelope.


Attachments
Hiblow-Hp-120Ll-Hp120Ll-New-Septic-Air-Pump-Aerator-_57.jpg (184 downloads)



Edited by Quarter Acre (08/06/19 11:45 AM)
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#509863 - 08/06/19 12:40 PM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
It appears from Bill's post that I should have my diffusers very near the bottom instead of on 4' risers.

Having them at 10' depth instead of 6' changes the game on PSI, making the Gast 0523 much more appropriate than the 120LL, correct? Looks like it puts out 4.0CFM @ 6PSI and 3.8 CFM @ 8PSI. Vertex says their 9" diffusers are rated 0.5-1.25CFM per disc; seems like I'd need three, maybe four total discs (perhaps dual 2" bases) for that to work properly unless I could somehow restrict airflow from the pump to the diffusers with a valve or something.

Matala 9" diffusers look to be rated 1.4-4.2CFM, and I presume the 12" Matalas are similar; seems like two 12" Matalas would serve my needs.

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#509877 - 08/06/19 02:53 PM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Quarter Acre Online   content


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 1514
Loc: West Central Missouri
Mr. Cody has been at this for much longer than I, but I can say that my 3 vertex diffusers are set no closer than 3 foot off the bottom of my 10 foot deep pond and I get no thermocline. Water temps have been within a degree or two all summer long from top to bottom.

With that said, the 0523 certainly gives you the ability to experiment going deeper and would be my choice along with 3 or 4 diffusers (9").

My 1/4 acre pond is muddy in nature and has had multiple surface scums this year. I have raised the diffusers off the bottom with no noticeable effect on clarity, but higher diffusers do allow for more surface agitation (and less pump wear -lower operating pressure). The closer the diffusers are to the surface, the more surface disturbance up to a point. I have plenty of water movement to turn the pond over during the night when need be and I get more surface agitation for helping with the floaty stuff. I give this example so that you can see where I have had to experiment with my system to maximize it's effects. 4 shallower diffusers, along with the 0523 pump, will turn your pond just fine and give some assistance with surface sheen while 3 deeper diffuser will maximize the turn overs, but reduce surface agitation. 3 or 4 Vertexs OR 2 Matalas is up to your desires and your budget.

IF you think that you will have diffusers at different depths, you will want to put an air flow control valve on the lines going out to the diffusers. This will allow you to adjust the flow to each line and equalize the boils. If not, the deepest diffuser will get the least amount of air while the shallowest one will boil like mad. Just a foot or two between diffuser depths makes a big difference.

I have only experimented with 3 single diffusers in my pond and don't think dual set-ups are necessary in smaller BOW's. I like the option to space them out for surface effects anyhow. I also like to put one in about 2 feet of water in a corner for the winter in case it ices over for any length of time. Probably not needed in my area, but I'm a dabbler.
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#509960 - 08/07/19 04:22 PM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Bill Cody Online   content
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12925
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Before you make a final decision about aeration contact Matt Rayl who is north of Indianapolis IN.. He has more than lots of experience (expert) with aeration and should be able to help you with some DIY aeration advice and equipment.
http://americanpondandlake.com/

With your brand new small pond in IN and aeration done properly, you shouldn't have to run your aerator more than 3 to 4 hrs per day. Water clarity has a lot to do with daily aerator run time. A good strong system should produce one adequate turnover in 2-3 hrs in your small pond. My experience is there are a lot of 0523 compressors operating adequately for more than 10-15 yrs, with one or two 9" disk or cylindrical membrane 24" tube diffuser/s. Some membrane diffusers are able to handle 6-8cfm. Most new ponds do not need as much daily circulation as older enriched ponds due to lower biochemical oxygen demand (BOD). Water clarity has a big influence on BOD. Now in this hot weather, I and a few others are only running our aerators 1 hr per day for an emphasis on yellow perch production.


Edited by Bill Cody (08/07/19 10:34 PM)
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#510094 - 08/10/19 09:51 AM Re: New guy and new SoIN pond [Re: Paul FNG]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
Again, I greatly appreciate the input gentlemen!

The more research I've done, the Gast 0323 seems to provide the best capability for price, but the issue I'm running into is one of power consumption. At 7PSI, that pump is going to pull in the vicinity of 500 watts and nearly 600w @ 10PSI per Quarter Acre's post using his pump and Fluke meter. Power for any aeration system is going to come from my barn's small small solar system which currently is 600W PV, soon to be 1200W.

It appears that aerating overnight in summer is the best way to go, but that will mean all draw for any aerator will come from my battery bank which currently consists of four 6V GC2 golf cart batteries in 24V configuration. Assuming a full battery bank when PV generation ceases, I only have 2500 watts to use down to 50% depth of discharge. In practical application, I'd only get at most three hours of aeration with a pump pulling 600W.

Short of scrapping my current <1YO battery bank and doubling it with new batteries at the cost of $1000, this is a hard/fast limitation on any potential aeration system.

PUBLIC MATH TIME!

With two 9" Vertex diffusers @ 10' depth, I figure I'd be near 7PSI between atmospheric and diffuser/line pressure, which with a Gast 0323 equates to roughly 3.8 CFM.

Vertex 9" disc diffusers are rated 0.5-1.25 CFM, and a single Vertex 9" diffuser will lift 1600GPM @ 10' depth and 1CFM.

Matala 12" disc diffuser is rated 25-160lpm which equates to 0.9-5.65CFM and "only adds less than 6 inches of water depth back pressure". Matala does not publish lift rates, but a 12" disc has 77% more surface area than a 9" disc and therefore two 12" discs have the same surface area as three-and-a-half 9" discs.

Currently thinking a Gast 0323 and two Matala 12" disc diffusers (or two dual 9" Vertex diffusers), set at 10' depth with 1/2" or 5/8" weighted hose and eventually running a maximum of overnight 3 hours, will be my plan. Whenever down the road I have to recapitalize my battery bank, I'll go to eight batteries 4S/2P and double my storage minimizing that run time limitation as my pond matures.

But enough about aeration for now, this subforum is about fish stocking!

I'm planning to get a lot more pallet habitat for FHMs installed in the coming weeks, and at this point pretty set on stocking them in late March/early April of next year. I'm the typical impatient as F new pond owner, so right now I'll probably reevaluate when to stock the gamefish; I may do some of the panfish (say 100 RES and 100 HBG) two months after stocking the FHM to help some grow and better establish the ecosystem, but wait until fall to stock the remaining 100 HBG/100 BG and the 20 HSB, 20 LMB and 10 CC.

I plan to daily supplemental feed with Optimal Junior as soon as any panfish are in the water, likely via hanging deer feeder.

Are the 20 HSB/20 LMB/10 CC a reasonable mix of predator fish for 400 total panfish, so do I need less bass or more gills? I've read CC are replacements for bass in an ecosystem, but my kids want to catch catfish so they're in the mix regardless.


Edited by Paul FNG (08/10/19 09:58 AM)

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