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Thread Like Summary
DrLuke, ewest, FishinRod, gehajake
Total Likes: 9
Original Post (Thread Starter)
by Sunil
I'm starting to believe that an adult Golden Shiner of 5", 6", and 7"+ can easily survive predation in a pond with 3, 4, and 5 lb.+ LMB, 3-5lb and much greater CC, and 4 lb.+ HSB. I'm thinking they may be too fast, or too keen to be taken.

My neighborhood pond is 1/4 acre when full pool (less than 1/3 of the non-winter time), and is basically a basin of a rectangle shape, reducing at the same slope. Little vegetation if any....a bit of FA on and off. Clumps of X-Mas trees in various states of decay, but none with any needles.

Very little place to hide if any. But those adult GSH are there, in force at times.

I do feed, but only a few times a week.

For several years, I did the Anderson Fish Farm Golden Shiner Fry thing. Certainly established GSH in the pond with many, many adult predator fish.
Liked Replies
by Bill Cody
Bill Cody
Sunil - the abundance of GSH strongly suggests that the number of 13"-16" predators are lacking. Since you say the pond has LMB and HSB, each CC takes the place of one of the other shiner eating predators. Focus on removing the CC so the other predator species will fill the pond's predator carrying capacity. This should help noticeably reduce the adult shiners. Two other items for this topic. 1, focus on catching the shiners with small hooks as you sit and sip a Corona or give a bounty to neighbor kids who catch shiners and put shiners in a live box for you. Feed those shiners to the predators to condition them to eating shiners. Get more of this info technique from your buddy Condello who is an expert at this method. 2. It is easily possible that you don't have as many medium predators as you think are in the pond, thus there is less predation pressure on the various year classes of larger shiners.
2 members like this
by canyoncreek
the poor employee who has to count those shiners before they close each box...
2 members like this
by esshup
Guys, if you want the predators to grow, you have to have a pond that has adult forage fish that are too big to become food. If the forage adults were small enough to become food, and the pond manager didn't stay ahead of the predators with manual harvest, then the predators would overeat the forage base and become stunted.

Sunil, you want the pond to be the way it is now. Stock some HSB or even some Hybrid Crappie. I have a customer that has a 4 ac pond that has GSH that are too big for the predators to eat and his HBC went from 2"-4" to 15" in two years.

If I had my druthers, I'd want a pond that had an overpopulation of Shiners. Cheaper on the pocket book than buying them 2x year to stock into the pond!!
2 members like this
by Theo Gallus
Theo Gallus
Originally Posted by Bill Cody
Those murky waters usually hold unknown secrets.
Tag line from the Horror Movie "The Creature From Bill Cody's Lagoon." shocked
1 member likes this
by FishinRod
ewest (and others),

I have seen this discussion about GSH reproductive disease on Pond Boss many times.

However, I have not really seen a good discussion where it was translated from "pond expert" language into "average pond owner" language. Therefore, I will try to ask some beginner questions for clarification.

If a pond has a self-sustaining population of GSH then there must be some fertile brood stock. Do you think the reproduction is from a small percentage of 3+ y.o. females that DO NOT have the infection, or the reproduction is from 1 or 2 y.o. females that have reached sexual maturity, but have not yet had the infection manifest in their egg production?

If the answer is the former, then I would expect to see the GSH population eventually extirpated if the young shiners are consumed prior to reaching sexual maturity, and the small amount of older brood stock eventually ages out of spawning. However, in that scenario I do see one very negative possibility if there are no predators in the pond capable of eating full-grown shiners. That would be a significant population of large shiners that suppress reproduction of the desirable predator species, yet supply zero forage value. In that case, the solution is obvious - you must have some predator in the pond capable of eating full-grown GSH.

If the answer is the latter, and the GSH have a viable, sustaining population in the pond, then what improvements could the pond owner make? Having the older females develop the disease in an infected ponds seems not much different than introducing new GSH that also carry the disease. I don't know how you would manage differently than any other forage species - you would just do some supplemental stockings as your sampling indicated the population was declining?

I feel like I am missing some obvious conclusion as regards pond management, or I have an erroneous assumption. Either way, I think we average readers would appreciate a little more clarification on this topic (since it seems to be a recurring discussion).

Thanks, FishinRod.
1 member likes this
by Bill Cody
Bill Cody
Too many golden shiners GSH are not the only fish that can limit recruitment of desired sport fish. Too many bluegills in a pond will also prevent recruitment of the largemouth. High numbers of green sunfish will severely reduce the amount of minnow, shiner and yellow perch recruitment. Actually too many of out of balance fish species will significantly affect the number of sport fish fry that will survive. I am now thinking that this can be a pro or con based on goals for the fishery.
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