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#9552 - 08/13/02 10:11 AM Coppernose Bluegill
Rowly Offline
Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 257
Loc: London, Ontario, Canada
How far north can these coppernose bluegill survive during the colder winters.(Michigan/Ontario area). A question to those that have coppernose bluegill in the north- would you recommend them over the native bluegill for stocking a large 16 acre lake that will soon have LM and SM bass in it. My goal is to have many large bluegill for eating as well as supplying forage food for the bass as they establish themselves. What about the idea of having both native and coppernose bluegill. The coppernose for their size and the native for their prolific behaviour for the bass in this large body of water. Will the native breed and cross with the coppernose? If the feeling is yeson having coppernose bluegill then can anyone suggest a suppler close to me in Southern Ontario. Thanks for your continued help on fish management and stocking. Rowly

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#9553 - 08/13/02 03:24 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
jawbone Offline
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Registered: 07/10/02
Posts: 44
Loc: Michigan
Rowly, check out this site suttle fish farm this will help you with some of your questions on the coppernose.
You may want to look at this on Georgia Giants also. Giant \'gills I am just starting to investigate but they said the fish will do fine in Michigan.

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#9554 - 08/13/02 06:59 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Registered: 08/08/02
Posts: 20043
Loc: Northeastern Indiana
If you ever get ice cover on your pond you can forget about coppernose bluegills. Just like Florida bass they have trouble surviving in northern winters. They're both native to penninsular Florida so they are not adapted to cold winters. Occasionally even producers in the deep south loose fish during unusually cool winters.

If you are thinking of Gerogia Giants you might want to see previous posts on them and question if you want to put up with some of the tradeoffs of green sunfish X bluegill hybrids. Hybrids have there place and some love em. However you need to find out all the pros and cons. That's all I will say.
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#9555 - 08/13/02 09:00 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Russ Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 1011
Loc: Ulster Park, NY
Jawbone,

If one of them Georgia Giants showed up at the dinner table......I'd be real leery who's the main course! \:D

Russ

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#9556 - 08/14/02 09:05 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Rowly Offline
Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 257
Loc: London, Ontario, Canada
Jawbone, I saw your post and started my interest so I went to suttle fish farm and gathered the info on coppernose the other day. However it seems that coppernose don't winter well in the north with ice on the lake as Cecil has suggested. I will now look into the Georgia giants and weigh the pros and cons for my application. Thanks

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#9557 - 08/14/02 10:22 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12334
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Rowly - You will get many positive responses about hybrid bgill so for your reference, I will supply a few of the negatives about hybrid bgill; Cecil B.1 also is well aware of many of the negatives of hybrid bgill and maybe 'we' can coax a few additional comments of hyb bgill out of him.
NOTE: Some of these negatives and maybe most of them can, by some, be considered POSITIVES; depends on point of view and which side you're arguing.
1. They are very aggressive, very easy to catch and fish out of your pond. Poachers can clean you out of prize fish very quickly.
2. Aggressive nature leads them to bite swimmers with no hesitation. Larger hybrids have rasping teeth around the mouth and have been reported to draw blood from moles, nipples & scabs; fish think these dark spots are snails. Swimming grandkids & women hate hybrid bgill when they get bit while swimming; an suprise and hurt!
3. Depending on the cross (parentage) 60 to 90% are males. Number of young produced is very limited and by themselves to produce forage for bass; the bass usually will not grow any bigger than 13" due to low amount of food. Successive generations may be more prolific and produce more young but ---
4. The offspring (F2, F3, F4 generation), I'm told by numerous fish hatchers, is trash, since in many cases they will not grow any larger than 4-6 depending on the generation". Ken Holyoak producer of the Georgia Giant bream says "F-2's aren't quite as good as F1 generation ". I have never tried to raise any of the F2 or F3 generation offspring in a cage or in an isolated pond to verify this fact. In a pond with mixed species or generations it would be very difficult to acurately visually determine which generation you were seeing. Reproduction may occur more than once a summer which commonly happens with sunfishes.

5. The gene pool of the offspring, with each generation, progressively reverts back to the dominate parent which in many cases is a green sunfish. I shouldn't have to tell anyone about the negatives of green sunfish. A quote about his hybrid bream from Ken Holyoak of Ken's Fish Farm, "Over a period of time, with inbreeding fish become smaller". "This a reason it is necesary to drain or poison out and restock your pond every few years". Holyoak claims this is true for all bream but I have found it primarily applies to ponds that are dominated with any form of hybrid bgill. North of the Ohio River, we have many ponds that are 30-40 years old and still producing large bgill with good growth of the pure northern strain.

6. Knowing the above two comments, the gene pool of the sunfish in a pond of reproducing hybrids would be a "mixed up mess" after several years. These fish, I would personally call "genetic trash".
7. Restocking hybrid bgill with adult bass in the pond will require you to restock large uneatable fish by the bass if you expect any number of teh stocking to survive. Quote K. Holyoak of Georgia Giant fame: "We do not recommend stocking baby fish in a pond already stocked with big fish". "Small ones should be grown in cages or small ponds until they are large enough to be safely stocked with big fish". Or large hybrids can be purchased for direct restocking.
8. When you fish them out of your pond (3-5yrs), it is recommended you completely clean it out and start over with the new batch. This will insure you get rid of any & all of the "trash" undersided offspring that may have survived.
9.. Zett's Fish Hatchery Drifting PA tried them & quit selling them due to all the negatives about them. See their testimony in their catalog.

ANY Comments from others with good reliable experiences?
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#9558 - 08/16/02 11:10 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Rowly Offline
Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 257
Loc: London, Ontario, Canada
Bill, thank you for your detailed account on hybrid bluegill. I think it is a no brainer not to stock hybrid for me but rely on my native bluegill and feed them well so they can obtain a decent eating size of 8-12" if possible. Have any other pond owners had luck with raising large native bluegill in the northern regions with four distinct seasons and what type of food are you using with the % of protein content to attain this growth over a shorter growing season. Thanks

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#9559 - 08/16/02 11:57 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Registered: 08/08/02
Posts: 20043
Loc: Northeastern Indiana
Rowly,

The secret to growing large northern pure strain bluegills is to keep their numbers down with a good predator population (largemouth bass) and not to overharvest the largest ones.

I also feed mine Aquamax feed that is for predators that is about 42 percent protein. I think you can get by with less protein for bluegills.

However, many of my bluegills have no interest in the artifical feed. I think it has do with the abundant natural feed I have in the pond, and most were not feed trained although in many cases that is not necessary with bluegills.

I also have so many bass I feed, that many are intimidated by the bass at feeding time. I had a handful of bluegills that I planted that were about 8 inches from a natural lake that ended up pushing 11 inches in 2 more years(0ne was 11 inches) that fed along with the bass. However for the most part most of my bluegills feed on natural feed.

One option is to purchase feed trained regular bluegills from a hatchery but they are hard to find. Most hatcheries only feed their hybrids and the regular gills are seined out of ponds that only have natural feed.

I purchased about 100 feed trained gills from a hatchery a couple of years ago in Illinois and they are as wide as they are long. However some of those have reverted back to natural feed also.
_________________________
If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.







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#9560 - 08/17/02 04:30 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12334
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Rowly - Once hybrids are on feed they will probably stay on feed. They can easily in the north (OH, southMI) when on feed, fed twice a day, go from 3-5" to 7-8" in one summer. Saw it & done it with trout chow as feed (40% protein). 8" to 9" sizes on feed is easily possible for you in two summers starting with 3-4" fish. I've done the same growth for northern bgill. Once the bgill get 7-8" their growth slows to about 1/2" to 3/4" / yr.
Your bgill and perch will probably feed and stay on feed better than Cecil's because of his agressive bass hogging the feeding area & the feed. Fish are very territorial; the dominant ones tend to take over and crowd out the other less dominants. Cecil's bgill that went from pellets onto natural feed were probably forced by the bass to stay off the pellets. All the pellet trained male bgill I 've put in my perch pond are still on pellets (2yrs); I can count all of them eating. No bass in the pond. Walleye control the perch population. I'm training a new batch of 6-8", male bgill in cages to eat pellets for release this fall or spring.
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#9561 - 08/19/02 11:37 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Rowly Offline
Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 257
Loc: London, Ontario, Canada
Bill, thanks for the info and maybe I will try to feed the bluegill/yellow perch to see if they will accept this new food. Any suggestion on how to start these fish to a new successful food program. The bluegill are new fingerling born from May until present and the perch being established for some time? There will be no LMB pressure to speak of (unlike Cecil)as I only introduced a few mature this year with some fingerling hatching. Next spring I will stock with larger number of adult LMB after having the bluegill fingerling grow and winter in the lake. My dream is to walk down from the house and feed the fish from the dock area hoping the fish will come from around the lake in time to this specific area for some free high protein food. Could this work and under what conditions. Thanks again Bill.

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#9562 - 08/19/02 01:58 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Registered: 08/08/02
Posts: 20043
Loc: Northeastern Indiana
I know your queried Bill specifically, but I'm sure he will back me up on this: You'll be wasting your time on perch although you may get the bluegills to feed on the pellets. It's hard enough for perch producers to feed train yellow perch when they are small. They have to use lights to concentrate the fry in ponds.I would bet anything the established perch will have no interest in the feed.

As far as getting the bluegills to feed, I would go to the same place everyday twice a day at the same time. Early morning and Evening is the best time. Don't overfeed though. Once you get some interest going there could be more and more fish arriving at the same time. However if you don't get any interest in about a week I would stop.
_________________________
If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.







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#9563 - 08/19/02 10:13 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
DAN PATERSON Offline
Lunker

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 242
Loc: CLAYTON, MICHIGAN
Rowly----Cecil is right on the starting to feed your gills. My pond is 10 years old and no feed of any type was ever used until last year. I bought 2 bags of the Purina Game Fish Chow, the floating mixed size kind (I think it is 32% protien) I walked out on one of the docks about 1 hour b/4 dark one day and threw out a couple handfuls. No action the first couple days but by the 3rd. or 4th. day a few gills started to play with the feed. Each day more gills came and now, in the second year, it is like driving a cow into the Amazon River with a bunch of hungry Prianas. It is a feeding frenzy every night. Litteraly hundreds of gills actually fighting over who gets a particular piece of feed. And several of the smaller turtles in the middle of all the turmoil. You can watch the ripples in the water all heading for the dock as I pull up on the ATV. The grandkids live to feed the fishys on the weekends. I still feed only by hand and at the same approximate time every night from the end of May thru the first part of September and only off the same dock toward one end of the 7 acre pond.
Try it like Cecil says and if they don't start eating after a week you can always quit and your only out a few bucks. I pay $14.49 for a 50 pound bag of the purina.
Good luck.
Dan
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Mistakes are proof that you are trying.


Dan

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#9564 - 08/19/02 10:25 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12334
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Rowly - Cecil's pretty much right in his previous Aug 19 post. Perch tend to stay near the bottom and it is unnatural for them to come to the surface even for food. They have to be trained for surface feeding; just like catfish. The bigger they get the harder it is to train them. Old dog & new tricks kind of thing. The easiest way to get some of the resident perch on feed is to buy some larger ones already feed trained. (try Laggis Fish Farm in Gobbels MI for larger feed trained perch or www.ridgeviewfinfarm.com in OHIO). The resident fish will tend to follow the feeders to the surface and teach them to take a few pellets. What really helps to get the nonfeeding residents to eat pellets is to feed them moist sinking pellets in the beginning AND use a feeding ring. For This Info See My Aug 17th Post to Rowly, under the section heading: Fish Food For New & Established Fish.
If you can not feed twice a day, once a day will also work; just not a fast. Time of year and amount of natural forage play a role here also.
As Cecil says, DO NOT overfeed; only small handful to start. And use a feeding ring to start until the fish feed actively. This keeps the food in open water so the fish can find it & get at it; maybe even after you leave.. They have to learn you are not the enemy. The smallest fish may start eating it first and larger ones will come and investigate and also learn to eat, esp after the food softens. Soft moist food is key when feed training esp larger fish. I soften all food that I feed. The fish eat it better, however it takes more time & fooling around. It's my hobby so I don't mind; kind of fun for me. Now, I like feeding them better than catching them. Caught lots & lots of all sizes and kinds. Now the challenge is to grow them to huge sizes. How would your dog like being jerked around by the jaw? I only fish when I need to harvest or to sample growth or thin size classes. Too frequent fishing teaches the fish to be hook smart esp in smaller water bodies. Too much fishing pressure is bad for future fishing unless you keep introducing new stupid fish into the pond.
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#9565 - 08/20/02 10:38 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Rowly Offline
Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 257
Loc: London, Ontario, Canada
Thanks Bill, Cecil and Dan for your input. I will put your knowledge to the test and hopefully over time get some fish to eat pellets from the dock as I enjoy their growth and see the success of proper pond/lake management and all its various curves that will be thrown at us from time to time. I look forward to the future challenges ahead as I gain more knowledge from reading your reply posts and hands on experiences... Thanks again (Cecil read my reply post to your question on released y perch)

Rowly

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#9566 - 08/21/02 08:49 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
David Reed Offline
Member

Registered: 04/22/02
Posts: 112
Loc: Fairfield, Texas
Rowly, I started trying to feed fish this year and was not having any luck. I made a manuel feeder using 4" pvc, 5' long, drilled 1/4" holes up 4 sides about 2" apart, capped one end of 4" pipe and put a screw in plug on the other end.
Just below the screw in plug, I drilled a bigger hole to tie a rope through so that I could tie it to my dock. This feeder didn't need filled but about once every 7-10 days at first, then it was every 3-4 days , then it was every other day and now it's everyday. I started throwing out a few pieces of old bread and made me a feeder ring out of some 1" pvc. Now I have perch feeding like crazy at my dock. All of this was very low cost.
And I am very happy with all the results.

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#9567 - 08/21/02 10:06 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Dave Davidson Offline
Lunker

Registered: 04/22/02
Posts: 1892
Loc: Hurst & Bowie Texas
David Reed,
I would have thought that the feed would get mushy and wash out of the kind of contraption you are using. Evidently not. Maybe the amount that does wash out works like a chum line. Do they just come up and suck the feed out of the holes? What are you feeding?

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#9568 - 08/21/02 02:37 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Rowly Offline
Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 257
Loc: London, Ontario, Canada
Thanks David for your reply. This gives me hope. I will take your instructions and build me a manual feeder if the perch/bluegill start to take food from the dock. How did you build your feeder ring with 1" PVC pipe? Did you just heat it (what length of PVC) and bend it round and connect the two ends together and glue with a 1" CONNECTOR? Thanks for speaking out and supplying your hands on knowledge as this is very important to NEWBEE"S like us....

Rowly

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#9569 - 08/21/02 11:24 PM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Bill Cody Offline
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Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 12334
Loc: Northwest Ohio - Malinta OH
Rowly - Feeding rings can be flexable black poly pipe or rigid PVC w/ elbows and glue. 4" dia thin wall works good; 4'x4' or big as you want. feed ring 2ft x 4ft is almost too small to allow very many fish to feed within the area. Floats high in the water. As mentioned 1" PVC can also work. When I use 1" flexable poly pipe coupled with a connector and silicone glue and taped to help make it water tight, I add a wind baffle which is vinyl siding cut in 3-4" wide strips and attached to the inside of the ring; keeps the food in the ring better during splashing. 5-6 ft dia is about as tight as one can coil the 1.5 -2" dia black poly.
NOTE: Some types of fish cannot retain feed that is soft as mush because the small particles cannot be retained by the fish's gills and the mush feed passes out the mouth cavity through the gills. However some fish can get benefit from the soft mushy feed.
BC
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#9570 - 08/26/02 10:09 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
David Reed Offline
Member

Registered: 04/22/02
Posts: 112
Loc: Fairfield, Texas
I made my feeder ring 2' x 4'. I wish that I would have made it 4'x4'. But any size will work.
I used 90 degree elbows on the corners and glued
it together with pvc glue. Then drilled a hole
in one side, put in an eye bolt to tie a rope on.
I siliconed around the eye bolt so that the pvc pipe wouldn't take on water.

With regard to my 4" manuel feeder. The fish suck the chum'd feed out of the 1/4" holes. I fill the feeder with Aqua Max 1/4" pellets and yes, the pellets turn to mush. The mush can easily be eaten by all sizes of fish.

When I first saw this type feeder, I posted it on this board to see if anyone else had ever tried one. A guy wrote in and said that his daddy n law had one and that he had actually gone under water with scuba gear and watched the fish feed.
All types of fish will feed on this type feeder.
blue gill, catfish, carp, etc.

It's cheap to make and it works.

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#9571 - 09/03/02 11:01 AM Re: Coppernose Bluegill
Rowly Offline
Member

Registered: 07/09/02
Posts: 257
Loc: London, Ontario, Canada
Thanks guys for your posts of knowledge.

Rowly

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