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#53860 - 05/10/05 07:23 PM Bluegill/Redear Beds
Greg Grimes Offline
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Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 3973
Loc: Ball Ground, GA
this is my first question in a long time. You bluegil/redear experts I want your opinion.

I was at a pond today and there were three places bream were bedding. First had 42 beds I counted 2nd had 26 and 3rd had 59. They were mostly bluegill but made an observation. Each had a few redear spawning as well. I have seen both spawning toghter before.

Intersting thing is the redear were always on the outside beds. First had 8 2nd 3 and 3rd 9 that I saw with the polarized shades.

Every time the redear were closet to shoreline and on the edge beds not the ones in the middle that were being guarded by the bluegill.

Just curious about this, thanks
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Greg Grimes
www.lakework.com

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#53861 - 05/10/05 07:46 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Bruce Condello Offline
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I caught 45 bluegill and 26 redears today on a Interstate 80 lake in western Nebraska. I was fishing in a float tube. The best and most efficient way to catch bluegill was to throw my offering right to the shoreline and twitch slowly. ALL of the redears were located beyond the bluegill beds and would bite a slow moving bait. The average depth where bluegill were caught was about two feet. The average depth of the redears caught was closer to 5 feet.
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Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.

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#53862 - 05/10/05 09:17 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19590
Loc: Miss.
Greg :

Great observation and question .

RE usually spawn earlier {a little cooler water}. Over here two times most years around the full or new moons , which ever comes first after water temp. is right , in March and April . The BG spawn four to five times and may overlap one month with the RE (April). In our ponds, the RE spawn deeper , a foot or two , if they are spawning at same time as BG . If they are not spawning at the same time , the RE are very shallow (6in to 2ft) while the BG when they spawn are at 2-4 ft if the water is clear.

If a RE male comes too close to a BG male's nest the BG will turn very dark and the RE will back off. On the other hand , if a BG male comes too close to a RE male's nest the RE will flair its red tipped ear flap and the BG will back off . This is the threat effect . Sometimes , if water is muddy , they will mix and you may get BG/RE crosses. See Bruce's post last week on IDing male and female BG where we discussed this. The threat effect above is why I think they segregate on a spawn site when they spawn at the same time provided they can see each other { not muddy }.

Having said all that , I will now try to answer the question . We have had a cold spring in the SE and I think the BG and RE spawn , as it started , is late , is out of sequence and in complete overlap. The first RE moved up early and took their preferred spot in very shallow water-- then the BG started moving in and took their preferred spot in the center of the site in a little deeper water-- then the late moving RE took the spot they usually take if there is an overlapping spawn in deeper water on the edge , which just happens to be the only spot left on the spawn site. You may not have been able to see the deepest RE beds at the deep outside of the site. I bet they were there. You may have had a different progression than we did. If there were no deeper RE nests then all of your RE may have moved up first and taken their preferred shallow and outside beds.

I noticed the same thing you did over the last 2 weeks in progression. This opinion is based on what I know from reading and observation from prior years and the fact that I observed it in progression this year. It looks like the RE have herded the BG up and surronded them. I have never seen what you described until this year. Thanks --ewest
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#53863 - 05/10/05 09:24 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Bruce Condello Offline
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Here's a photo of one of the bigger redears. He was 12 inches and weighed 1.5 lbs.



Actually, I have no idea if it was a male or female. I've only caught them a few times ever. This one was caught in about 6 feet of water just outside of the bluegill bedding area.

I look so goofy because I took the picture of myself. Wish one of you guys would join me sometime. Nobody around here takes Tuesdays off to go fishing. \:\(
_________________________
Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.

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#53864 - 05/10/05 09:27 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
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Loc: Miss.
Bruce :

What a beautiful RE male { I think I see a red edge on the earflap}. Thanks , I wish I was fishing.
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#53865 - 05/10/05 11:38 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Registered: 08/08/02
Posts: 20043
Loc: Northeastern Indiana
Bruce,

At least up here in the north the redear males have a bright red/orange edge on the ear flap. On the ear flap of the females it's barely there and a light orange. From my taxidermy experience it actually seems the females are the bigger sex of the redears in my area vs. the males in the bluegill species.
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If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.







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#53866 - 05/11/05 06:25 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Russ Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 1011
Loc: Ulster Park, NY
Lets see if I've got this right, Bruce goes fishing today and the sign on his office door reads, CLOSED TODAY......FAMILY ILLNESS ;\)

Russ

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#53867 - 05/11/05 09:39 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Registered: 08/08/02
Posts: 20043
Loc: Northeastern Indiana
I'm thinking Bruce is open on Saturday's and closed on Tuesdays?
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If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.







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#53868 - 05/11/05 11:42 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Dave Davidson Offline
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Registered: 04/22/02
Posts: 1892
Loc: Hurst & Bowie Texas
Cecil, we may have a clue as to Bruces value system.

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#53869 - 05/11/05 01:12 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19590
Loc: Miss.
Bruce :

Contrary to my prior post that may not be a male RE. I thought I had read and seen pictures of male and female RE and that they looked the same except the male only had the red earflap. That is apparantly not the case. After a search I can't find that info but found several references and statements that just say they look alike. More confusion surrounds the lepomis species.

Anyone who knows how to visually tell the male and female RE apart please let me know.
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#53870 - 05/11/05 03:05 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Registered: 08/08/02
Posts: 20043
Loc: Northeastern Indiana
Ewest,

Gee thanks. After mounting up hundreds of male and female redears over the course of 20 + years as a taxidermist, I don't know my redears? And I guess fisheries school with honors was a waste of time too?

It's definitely a Redear (Lempomis microlophus)also known in the south as a shellcracker.

Looks like female to me as I don't see much of a bright red/orange border, and it appears to have a bulge which could be indicitive of eggs. But what do I know? \:\(
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If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.







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#53871 - 05/11/05 03:45 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Martin Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 72
Loc: Montpelier, IN
Cecil, I read ewest`s post twice. He didn`t say you were wrong, he said he might be because he couldn`t tell if it was male or female. Not that it wasn`t a redear!

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#53872 - 05/11/05 05:10 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19590
Loc: Miss.
CB1 :

I was saying that I was wrong in my statement to Bruce that it was a male RE. NO QUESTION that you were correct it is a RE .Thanks for your first post. After reading your first post I questioned my conclusion {that it was a male}, checked my prior info and found it to be lacking . I learn somthing every day on this site and often , as in this case , it was from one of your posts. It seems that both male and female RE look alike and may have red on the earflap , which you infered in a nice way. That is why I corrected my prior post to Bruce and asked if anyone could help in this regard. I would like any info I can get from you or the board on how to tell the difference.

I agree with you that the fish looks heavy with eggs and may well be a female .

Thanks for your kind help on the subject . Let me know if this clears up my prior post. Thanks ewest
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#53873 - 05/11/05 05:25 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Registered: 08/08/02
Posts: 20043
Loc: Northeastern Indiana
Ewest,

Me thinks I overreacted. I apologize! \:o \:o \:o

When you said, "Anyone who knows how to visually tell the male and female RE apart please let me know" after I just indicated how to I ASSumed you disregarded my post. \:o \:o \:o
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If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.







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#53874 - 05/11/05 05:40 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19590
Loc: Miss.
CB1 :

For the record I would never disregard one of your posts . I have to much to learn on many of these subjects {as evidenced by my post/error} and you have provided very good information to all of us in the past. If you post and I don't agree that means I better check my info and position before I do anything else. As always thanks for your help and input. ewest
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#53875 - 05/11/05 08:41 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Theo Gallus Offline
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Registered: 05/14/04
Posts: 12394
Loc: Central Ohio
Bruce, are you going to eat all those BG & RES, or transplant a select few for their genes?

By the way, you can't tell from B&W text, but I am green with envy over anyone catching 71 sunfish that meet your size/weight standards. You probably posted the picture of the runt! ;\)
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#53876 - 05/11/05 09:34 PM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19590
Loc: Miss.
CB1 :

After looking some more I found info on fishing louisiana . com./ common freshwater spotfish page. You were correct RE males have red edge to ear flap and female RE have orange edge on ear flap . I looked at probably 20 different sites and none mentioned this but this site . Many sites just said both were IDed by red on ear flap. Many however called it gill flap .Thanks--ewest
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#53877 - 05/12/05 09:48 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Bruce Condello Offline
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Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 8854
Loc: United States
Russ and Dave,

I think my patients have come to understand that April/May appointments are hard to come by. :p

At least I didn't use the fishing excuse my cousin used yesterday, which was something to the effect of "I need the day off to have a procedure to have something removed".

Theo,

No fish kept. It was 88 degrees and even if I was so inclined to do a little "gene enhancement project" the fish probably wouldn't have moved too well. (I also would have required some special paperwork).

Cecil,

I would value your advice anytime on RES sexing. You and ewest as well have probably seen more of these guys than I could in five lifetimes. I just figured out last year what one looked like. I'd never caught one!!
_________________________
Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.

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#53878 - 05/12/05 10:40 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Nick Smith Offline
Member

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 241
Loc: Dallas, TX
Im disappointed in you guys. You could tell a LOT more about that redear from the pic than you discussed.

First, it is a female. You can tell, not by the ear / gill cover / wing flap, but by the size of the mouth. Females mouths are much bigger than male mouths.

Secondly, it was a working class fish. Not one of the leaders of the pack. The poop was coming out the back end and not up by Condello's thumb.

Thirdly, she had recently been to the dentist.

Fourthly, Condello isn't too good of a fisherman. No good fisherman can catch as many fish as he (supposedly) caught and remain that clean. I saw no fish poop or blood on his clothes anywhere. He may have been standing in the parking lot of "Bubba's sushi bar and bait shoppe" for all we know.

BTW Condello, what were you using for bait to catch these little suckers? You vaguely mentioned it as an "offering". Come on dude, share a secret.
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Nick Smith

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#53879 - 05/12/05 10:59 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Greg Grimes Offline
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Registered: 05/03/02
Posts: 3973
Loc: Ball Ground, GA
ewest thanks for the info. I have seen several bg/re crosses over the years shocking lakes. They spawn about like you said excpet usualy only once (early) for redear and 5 for bluegill and not too uncommon for overlap.

I knew most redear were caught in deeper water and this is why I was curious why they were in the shallower beds. thanks for the input. If I knew how to post pictures here I could show you some big redear one just last week was 2.3 lbs. Nice fish Bruce and yes that is a female.
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Greg Grimes
www.lakework.com

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#53880 - 05/12/05 11:05 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Sunil Offline
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Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 11521
Loc: Somerset, PA
Nick, that's too funny!

Bruce, you mention that you look "goofy" in your picture; but really, we can put two and two together with you being a dentist and then the answer is really quite simple.........

Lay off the gas man, just lay off the gas!
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"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."


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#53881 - 05/12/05 11:51 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Bruce Condello Offline
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Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 8854
Loc: United States
Nick! Leave it to you to notice the you-know-what hanging out the back end of the redear. My new method for catching redears, of which I am quite proud, is to use a 1/32 ounce chartreuse jighead tipped with 1/4 of a nightcrawler, preferably head section. If you run the gauntlet through the bluegill beds, then keep fishing it slower and deeper and the redears will hammer it on the periphery of the beds. Worked very well!

Greg,

Do you have access to a scanner? I've finally forced myself to learn to post pictures and it's fairly simple after a couple of screwups.

Sunil,

No comment....except that gas and whiskey don't mix. ;\)
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Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.

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#53882 - 05/12/05 11:54 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
ewest Offline
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Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19590
Loc: Miss.
Greg :

To aid in my education plesae tell me what you saw in Bruces pic. that let you know that the RE in question is a female . I would also like anyone else to add their input.Thanks--ewest
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#53883 - 05/13/05 09:52 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
george Offline
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Registered: 06/22/02
Posts: 1074
Loc: Plano, texas
PB forum members ML, DD, and george have had email conservations that we have been reluctant to share on PB forum about growing big Bluegills and Redear Sunfish, due to the fact that we didn’t want to Texas brag – perish the thought...! \:D

We are in the “Texas Triangle”, encompassing an area from N.E - S.E. and N.W. Texas, varying from arid N.W. Texas, wet “Deep-East” Texas and semi-arid N.E. Texas.

After all the conversation about pound size B.G.s and big RESF on the PB forum, we decided to go public and start measuring our fish, since we routinely catch them this size and think nothing special about it – except they are a blast to catch on a 5 wt fly rods – anything else is cheating.

It’s quite common on our pond to catch 25 + gills/hr. on fly tackle, many in the 9-10 inch, one-pound class.

In fact one un-named member is reporting 1 ½# BG and 2# RESF…. :rolleyes:

George

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#53884 - 05/13/05 10:19 AM Re: Bluegill/Redear Beds
Bruce Condello Offline
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Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 8854
Loc: United States
George!

We need photos. Texas bragging is allowed with visual evidence! :p
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Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.

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