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#512540 - 10/09/19 01:13 PM Raising SMB in a Tank?
Freg Offline


Registered: 01/22/19
Posts: 53
Loc: TN
Has anyone ever tried raising SMB bass in a tank before putting them in their pond? I found a source that only has 4 inch fish and I'd ideally like 8 inch or bigger but was thinking maybe I could grow them in tank over the winter and release them in the spring. Any thoughts or experiences?

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#512552 - 10/10/19 12:12 AM Re: Raising SMB in a Tank? [Re: Freg]
Snipe Offline


Registered: 10/26/18
Posts: 644
Loc: NW Kansas
In my short length of time trying to feed train SMB, I found it was very hard to keep fish "in" the tank. I had no cover or netting and learned real quick on that.
I would guess the number of fish in "X" gallon tank would become more of a factor in high numbers. Temp would play a role in how often partial water changes would be needed plus what type of feed. If minnows are used water quality would remain better, longer.
How many fish and how big of tank??
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#512562 - 10/10/19 09:22 AM Re: Raising SMB in a Tank? [Re: Snipe]
Freg Offline


Registered: 01/22/19
Posts: 53
Loc: TN
I'm only looking at getting probably 20 SMB. The place I talked to said they do not eat pellets so I'd probably have to do minnows and or worms. I was thinking of trying it in a large plastic tote, something that would be maybe 75 gallons of that's big enough.

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#512564 - 10/10/19 10:38 AM Re: Raising SMB in a Tank? [Re: Freg]
Bill Cody Online   content
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Registered: 04/18/02
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I strongly agree with Snipe. For smallies in a tank you will need a VERY good water filtration system or have a constant flow through water system with IMO at least 3-4 complete water changes per day. SMB require higher water quality than BG&LMB. Water filtration needs to be very similar to an aquaculture water recirculation system. I would use one similar to what Cecil Baird showed how to make on this forum. If needed I can provide a link to his posts. Or have a constant or once a day flow through water system.

Smallies feed train relatively easily, IF you do it correctly. Been there done it numerous times. Another option. This is what I would do. While the water is still reasonably warm, I would set up a slow flow through system with water from the pond and your 75 gallon tote. Get those smallies pellet trained using first chopped nightcrawlers and maybe with some chopped BG or small LMB fillets chopped into bits. If food and manure accumulate on the bottom siphon it out because it quickly degrades water qualtiy.
SMB will quickly learn to eat chopped night crawlers (0.7-1" pieces). It is best to do this in lower light or with some sort of cover or partial cover on the tank so the smb do not spook as you add food. At first esp the first 2-4 days add chopped food 2 to 4 times a day until you see them eating the food. Then you can add food 2 times per day. Then soften some high quality pellets (min 40% protein). Gradually add some pellets with chopped worms/fish. Roll the pellets so they sink and mix them into some chopped worms at feed time. As you see fish eating gradually decrease worms and increase % of pellets. SMB will at first reject hard pellets because of texture; they want soft foods until they are trained.

Once you get them eating soft pellets then transfer the smallies into a cage in the pond and feed them some soft pellets 1-3 times/day in winter as long as the water is not ice covered. Caging them give them high quality water versus tank water. In cold water feed an average 2-5 pellets per fish just enough to keep them healthy. Then in spring (water temp 50F) finish raising them in the cage until 6"-8".

If you are adding SMB into a LMB pond all this effort is not worth it because LMB will strongly suppress the life of smallies in a pond environment. If you really want smallies renovate the entire pond and start over with smallies as the main predator.


Edited by Bill Cody (10/10/19 10:54 AM)
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#512571 - 10/10/19 12:08 PM Re: Raising SMB in a Tank? [Re: Bill Cody]
Freg Offline


Registered: 01/22/19
Posts: 53
Loc: TN
Bill,

Thanks for all of the information. It does sound like a lot of work given the presence of LMB. I was tempted to just catch a few smallies from the stream but don't want to risk disease. I'm fine with the SMB just being a supplemental catch but I'd like to give them a shot. Wish the source that I found had some larger ones available...

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#512572 - 10/10/19 12:42 PM Re: Raising SMB in a Tank? [Re: Freg]
RStringer Online   content


Registered: 06/06/18
Posts: 351
Loc: Parsons KS
Wheels are turning here. What are the chances of setting up like a fence in the pond. Kind of a little quarantine area. Making it out of small netting or seine net. You would have the same water quality as your pond already has. You wouldn't have to do the filtration system at all. A few T-post and netting and your done. Just have the top of the netting above the water line incase you got so jumpers.


Edited by RStringer (10/10/19 12:45 PM)
Edit Reason: My spelling sucks
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#512574 - 10/10/19 01:18 PM Re: Raising SMB in a Tank? [Re: RStringer]
Freg Offline


Registered: 01/22/19
Posts: 53
Loc: TN
I was thinking about trying to make a cage, definitely would be simpler. Not sure if it'd be an issue in the winter or not

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#512636 - 10/11/19 01:56 PM Re: Raising SMB in a Tank? [Re: Freg]
RStringer Online   content


Registered: 06/06/18
Posts: 351
Loc: Parsons KS
I'm now thinking maybe to build my own little fenced off area. Just as a grow out area or just to test some different things out. Mayb put some bigs cats in there and noddle them out. Always wanted to try that but just not crazy enough to do it the the rivers around here.
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