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Pat Williamson, Steve_
Total Likes: 4
Original Post (Thread Starter)
Best Forage for a BC/HSB Pond #524679 08/13/2020 10:38 PM
by Steve_
I'm currently in the process of getting quotes for a 1/2-3/4 acre pond. The apex predators for the pond will be Blue Catfish (BC) and Hybrid Striped Bass (HSB). I have a million ideas for forage, but I thought I'd get some opinions from you guys.

  • -Will TFS work in such a small pond? They are definitely a favorite food of both the BC and the HSB.
    -Do I NEED BG? Since I'm not adding LMB, I wasn't sure if BG would be necessary, as they aren't typically on the top of the list for BC/HSB forage.
    -How will Golden Shiners (GS) work? I've heard they are great for HSB but I've also heard that Catfish are too slow to catch them.
    -How would Black Crappie (BCP) work? I know they aren't recommended for small ponds because they can stunt and overpopulate, but I figured if that happened, a pond full of bite-size BCP would make the BC fat and happy.

Any ideas/opinions on a BC/HSB pond would be greatly appreciated
Liked Replies
Re: Best Forage for a BC/HSB Pond #524989 Aug 21st a 01:17 AM
by jpsdad
Since Shad are also filter feeders, would you think they'd create a similar scenario?

You bet. Shad reduce the standing crop of phytoplankton and covert zooplankton into meaningful forage for predators. Larger shad eat detritus and algea outright. There are several benefits. Increased visibility favors predators. Reduced standing crop of phytoplankton makes the nighttime dips of DO more muted with higher lows. Lower standing crops of zooplankton mean less competition for DO as well. More DO means higher predator metabolism and of course the more they are inclined to eat the more they can grow.

I will mention that good visibility does not necessarily mean that water is infertile. If there is a good mix of organisms and their predators are not over-abundant, those organisms can crop phytoplankton at the rate it reproduces. A large standing weight of phytoplankton, though it is food, isn't really a good thing. It means that consumers are not abundant enough and the phytoplankton population consists of many aged individuals. These kind of conditions can lead to phytoplankton die-offs which can also kill the fish in the pond.
2 members like this
Re: Best Forage for a BC/HSB Pond #524887 Aug 19th a 02:28 AM
by jpsdad
Swingle did some tests with Lampsilis claibornensis. This is a common mussel in the south though not sure if it is found in Atlantic drainages. It is edible and his interest in the mussel was for a co-crop. In his trials, he grew more fish (LMB and BG) with mussels than without them. His thoughts were that mussels improved water quality. He cropped the production ponds of mussels each year and there were over 1100 lbs/acre of them still remaining at end of the 5 year study. The standing weight of mussel meat was over 350 lbs/acre. He thought studies surrounding the effects of mussels on fish production was worth pursuing though I am not aware of any additional research conducted by him.

In Oklahoma, there is a unionid that frequently finds its way into ponds and the same mussel is common also in creeks with intermittent flow. Coons love them as do Big Blues.
1 member likes this
Re: Best Forage for a BC/HSB Pond #525142 Aug 25th a 12:04 AM
by RAH
I just got a delay from a contractor to finish my 4th pond. I did not do much myself on the pond today until he called and pushed back today's meeting (late afternoon call), then I channeled my frustration into earth moving. I may just have to do this one on my own like the last one. Its hard to find solid contractors these days, but I guess that they are making more money with their strategy, just not money from me. My drainage attempts have been more successful than I thought that they would be, so maybe the delay will be in my favor? Every closed door results in another open door...
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