Pond Boss
Posted By: snrub Building new forage mini pond - 03/30/14 03:26 PM
I took the plunge. Have been thinking about building a very small pond to raise some FHM and RES to help stock various older ponds I have been cleaning out and a few more I might get to some day. Well I jumped on the dozer yesterday and there is a hole in the ground now. (I know Bill Cody, equipment operators dig holes, pond builders build ponds LOL. Well I'm neither grin , so we will see if it ends up being a pond or a hole in the ground. grin laugh

The other fish seem fairly easy to get out of my main pond to stock the other ponds, but the RES are harder and the FHM will be gone out of my main pond in another year (probably).

Probably not a practical idea. Probably better to just buy the fish I need. But who says a hobby needs to be practical. Matter of fact is, I just wanted to do it, so I did it. The experience is the main goal more than the fish anyway. I just want to see if I can do it. Raising fish is pretty new to me and kind of exciting for the time being.

It is awfully small. Roughly 60x45 feet which is only about 1/20 acre. Will get a better measurement later. I did not want it great big because am planning on using a pump to lower water if I ever want to seine it. Thinking mostly will use traps to get the fish I want out when needed. I was able to trap a bunch of FHM (probably 5 or 6 pounds) out of my main pond the other day pretty easily. Guessing depth at 8' but will get the laser out later today to get the water level set, overflow level and dam level established later today so will check it for sure then. Hopefully will have all but the finish work and seeding done by evening today.

It is adjacent to my main pond. I had some extra room that was only going to be a mowing job anyway as the area was not useful for much else. I have room to make the forage pond bigger but thought about putting a cabin for guests someday in the same area adjacent to it so did not want to take all the area up. Also since am planning on using a pump to remove water did not want to get the water capacity too big.

This may not be a well thought out plan eek , although have been thinking about doing this for most of a year now. Nothing new there. Any suggestions (even discouraging ones) are welcome. Have read several of the older threads about forage ponds for ideas.

Pics below.


Description: Area sits just to the east of main pond
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Description: water surface area roughly 60'x45'
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Description: packing in the clay for the dam
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Description: about 8' max depth
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Posted By: JamieE Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/30/14 03:36 PM
Great project snrub! I'll be watching this thread for information as I've been considering doing something similar. Wonder how much forage you can raise in a pond that small? Id be using mine to raise FH and GSH. Thanks for posting...
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/30/14 04:19 PM
Shape it like a paint roller tray. (bottom and side contours)
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/30/14 10:02 PM
It appears you've got some decent clay soil so it should hold water - maybe well. It looks like a good job for a minnow pond. If fertilized and/or minnow feeding you could raise maybe 50 lbs of minnows per year. At $5.00/ lb that is around $250/yr. Multi-species of minnows feeding in different niches could increase the annual production. Aeration (RC51 style) would help. If it gets lots of algae or weeds which it likely will, put papershell crayfish in there to keep the bottom clean - polyculture and a double crop for a total of more than 50 lbs - minnows + crayfish. Crayfish will eat the excess minnow food. You won't need cover for crayfish if just minnows are present. There are people here that will buy your crayfish.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond update - 03/31/14 02:17 AM
Pretty well finished for now except for adding some more rock tomorrow. Will wait for the soil to weather a little before doing the final work down before planting something temporary for cover. Will use a box blade and harrow for that.

Put some rock in the bottom as well as AB3 in places along with a bench on one side for RES spawning beds (or BG if I ever decide to use it for them). Made it a little longer. Final size 40x70 which figures .064 or about 1/16 acre. Only 2' of freeboard above full pool but that should be plenty for the amount of runoff it will get plus the fact that the spillway is wide to handle nearly any flow. Final max depth ended up at 7.5'.

Water in bottom is seepage from the pond next to it. Full pool of this mini pond will be about 11" above full pool of the main pond. Main pond has an 8" overflow pipe and emergency overflow spillway at 8" above full pool so theoretically if we had a big enough rain event to have the pipe running full siphon and 3" depth running out the emergency (would be about 15' wide by that point) then the water could back up to the spillway of the mini forage pond and be even with it. Couple more inches higher than that and a LMB could swim upstream and get into the forage mini pond. If that happens I will have a lot more to worry about than bass getting in my forage pond. Had a 12" rain event that brought water level within 1" of emergency overflow so it would take almost a Noah flood for it to become a problem. Thanks to PBF and another poster that had this problem with his forage pond, this was something I kept in mind. I was going to put this pond lower, but after reading about his forage pond getting flooded and LMB getting in it, realized I could have the same problem and should move it to a little higher ground. Thanks to PBF and someone else's misery they posted, I was able to consider the problem and avoid it.

Additional pictures below. Can see the red paint lines in some of the pictures which is full pool level.


Description: red paint marks are full pool water line
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Description: Shallow bench area is on the right
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Description: overflow area rocked by 4-wheeler
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Description: back side of dam
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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/31/14 02:23 AM
esshup: Shape it like a paint roller tray. (bottom and side contours)

I remember you giving that advice to someone previously and tried to follow it. I did put a shallow area bench along one side for a spawning area but if I pull enough water out to get to seigning depth, the bench will then be exposed anyway. Put the slope to the north more gentle than the rest so would not be so bad walking out.

Thanks for the advice.

Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/31/14 02:41 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
It appears you've got some decent clay soil so it should hold water - maybe well. It looks like a good job for a minnow pond. If fertilized and/or minnow feeding you could raise maybe 50 lbs of minnows per year. At $5.00/ lb that is around $250/yr. Multi-species of minnows feeding in different niches could increase the annual production. Aeration (RC51 style) would help. If it gets lots of algae or weeds which it likely will, put papershell crayfish in there to keep the bottom clean - polyculture and a double crop for a total of more than 50 lbs - minnows + crayfish. Crayfish will eat the excess minnow food. You won't need cover for crayfish if just minnows are present. There are people here that will buy your crayfish.


Not going to get rich raising FHM's!!!! cry Fortunately that was not a goal for this project anyway. smile

Thanks for mentioning the fertilizer. Reminds me I need to put a scoop of the manure/hay compost pile in there to get things growing when it fills.

Had not thought of paper shell crayfish. I kind of like that idea.

If the FA in my big pond is any indication, yep, I'm going to have algae.

Figuring on putting a diffuser in there when the aeration goes into the big pond later this spring.

Will hand feed the FHM's. I like watching them.

Would like to raise some RES. What would happen if I put in something like 10 RES, a pound of FHM's, and some soft shell crayfish. Just let them duke it out and see what comes out the winner. laugh

I know RES preferred food is snails. If my main pond is any indication the rock I put in this pond will be covered with snails. Realizing this probably will not be enough, it is my understanding that RES also eat pretty much what BG eat, so they should consume young FHM's also. I'm guessing the RES also would like crayfish so they might be goners. Would the rock I put in there give them some hiding places and a chance for survival? Would I need to start out with a higher amount of FHM's to account for the RES wiping out a significant number? Is this just a recipe for disaster? eek

Surely I would end up with one out of three surviving and reproducing. Two out of three would not be too bad either. Three out of three would probably be too much to ask.

I feel an experiment coming on. wink

Thanks for the advice.

Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/31/14 02:55 AM
By the way Bill, there is a clay brick company, clay tile company, and used to be a clay pottery company all within about 7 miles of me. They all use that red clay you see in the picture.

If we build new terraces in a field and get a low spot, we have a pond till it evaporates.

Good for building ponds, sucks for farming. Percolation rates is something on the order of a few hundredths of an inch per hour for out subsoil.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond update - 10/12/14 06:48 PM
Had at least one request for an update on this pond, so on this nasty outside day will try and bring the project up to date. I've failed to keep it up to date.

Pictures below of final finish of rock lining before filling with water. The rock is all crushed limestone.

Part of rocked area is 2-3" size cleaned lateral (septic tank system) rock and the rest is AB3 which is about 1" and all the fines below that size, which contains a lot of ag lime in the fines.

Hopefully rock will supply spawning areas for RES and hiding areas for PK shrimp.

This should supply all the lime needed for the naturally acidic clay. End of March 2014 completion.


Description: shallow area along right side of picture
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Description: rock mostly covering bottom, but not all
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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond update - 10/12/14 07:07 PM
Below are pictures of initial water fill. Not sure what the runoff area is for this pond, but guess it to be a couple acres. Mostly water comes from gravel area surrounding our shop and buildings. Notice a little erosion of the rock where the water ran into the pond too fast.

Several dozen FHM trapped from my main pond were added along with a couple pallets for them to spawn on. Noticed at least one FHM male had taken residence under one of the 3-4" limestone rocks for his nest and spawning substrate.

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Posted By: snrub buyer beware - 10/12/14 07:23 PM
Buyer beware when buying fish. The pictures below are some of what I received when I purchased 200 RES part of which were going in my mini forage pond.

Good thing I hand sorted every fish. Put 25 of the best looking RES in this pond. Anything I could not positively ID part went into my old pond, part in daughters pond and part into my sons pond. They are all contaminated with GSF already, so some of the fish that have obvious GSF parentage will hurt nothing there. The fish that actually are RES (that were too small for me to identify) will help their ponds, which we are stocking from my pond this spring.

Fish were stressed and in rough condition. Lost five of the 25 stocked in the first week that I know of. First of May, 2014


Description: This in what is supposed to be 200 RES? Give me a break!
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Description: I'm no fish expert, but recognize GSF genes.
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Description: Don't look like no Redear to me
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Description: Maybe a hybrid? But definitely GSF genes
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Posted By: snrub Re: buyer beware - 10/12/14 07:31 PM
Added some additional FHM spawning material.

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Posted By: snrub Re: buyer beware - 10/12/14 07:48 PM
Picture taken from the top of the dirt pile. The dirt is coming out of a sediment pond I'm building to capture runoff from an agricultural field before it enters the main pond. First part of June 2014.

Also a picture of the new sediment pond with the dirt work pretty well complete.

Have had a very dry year. Just enough rain so the crops are looking great, but very little runoff. Main pond still way low, and this forage pond still not filled to full pool. Normally we have numerous spring large rain events that everything starts the year full. Not this year.


Description: sediment pond dirt work pretty well complete.
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Description: Looking down on the forage pond from the dirt pile
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Posted By: snrub Mini forage pond - 10/13/14 03:20 AM
First time at full pool for the forage pond............ finally. Main pond still about 18" low at this point.

Over flow at lower left in first photo. Main pond in immediate background. Old pond in far background behind the small creek ahead and to the left of the growing corn.

July 11, 2014. FHM fry seen in shallows.


Description: Mini forage pond
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Mid July

One bad thing about owning equipment and it sitting in a shed a hundred feet away. Sometimes I just can't leave well enough alone. Mini forage pond not yet a year old and already expanding and modifying it.

Picture shows dozer tearing out crushed rock overflow area. Going to pack in clay and raise that portion up to dam height. Cut slot in dam just to the west of the original overflow and put in 6" overflow pipe and raise water level about a foot. Will make max depth 8.5' now. Will put emergency overflow on other end.

Hey....... pond looks kind of small...........backhoe is right here handy.........water is down from evaporation and dry weather. Let's make it bigger!!!!! North end dug out with backhoe as far out as it would reach. Pond is about 85' long now. Now instead of paint roller shaped like Esshup suggested it is now paint roller shaped with a steep drop off at the shallow end.......... oh well, at 60 I don't feel much like seining anyway.

New sediment pond in background of last picture.


Description: taking out the old overflow
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Description: Have to get down to solid clay to make a good seal
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Description: Dam has to extend up east side now to raise water level
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Description: old overflow taken out
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Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond - 10/13/14 04:44 AM
Pictures of added section to the north end. Reached out as far as the JCB 214e backhoe would reach. The ridge of ground left in the picture will be about a foot under water at the new full pool level. The reason the ridge was left, I did not want to dig in the water all the time. So I dug at the very edge of the water starting with my hoe fully extended. When finished digging all I could, I dug out each end (the two sides of the pond) of the cut and let the water run into the new portion. This lowered the water level and exposed that much dirt shown in the picture.

No worry of compacting bottom of this pond. Solid clay with water percolation measurements in the hundredths of an inch per hour.

New dam completed along east side and over the previous rock overflow in the background.


Description: new portion of mini forage pond in foreground
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Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond - 10/13/14 04:57 AM
Pictures of installing the overflow pipe. I used rubber anti-seep collars in the big pond, but the 3pt tractor mounted cement mixer was going to be used to make concrete ends for the overflow pipe, so I just used cement anti-seep collars. Backhoe dug trench for pipe, then we hand dug slot on sides and bottom of trench for anti-seep, then poured concrete.

Definitely a farmer done job. Not professional at all but functional.

Notice new dam portion to the left in the first picture. That is where the rocked overflow used to be.

The main pond is about 2' low at this point which is mid August. The flat concrete for the water to hit when it exits will be a few inches under water when the main pond is at full pool. The outlet pipe will be about 8" above the main pond full pool level so fish can not swim up the pipe to the forage pond. Good time to work on ponds when they are low. Hard on water quality and fish.


Description: 6" sched 40 pipe with 2 concrete anti-seep collars
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Description: inlet side of overflow pipe from the mini forage pond
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Description: outlet side running into main 3 acre pond
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Description: outlet side - water in main pond is 2' low at this point
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Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond - 10/13/14 05:17 AM
Aeration in the main pond was put in early in the summer. This is the installation of air to this mini forage pond as well as to the new sediment pond.

Made two home made diffuser bases, one for each small pond.
Two Matala single membrane diffusers driven by a Pondmaster 100 linear air compressor with the air split using a garden hose splitter with incorporated shutoff valves. Valves used to adjust air flow to each pond. A little more air sent to sediment pond because it is about twice as big as the forage pond. 3/4" black water pipe to waters edge and a ways into each pond sunk with concrete blocks, then 3/8 sinking hose the rest of the way to the diffusers. Used our telehandler to set the diffusers, then my body to get them just where I wanted them under water.

Diffusers are marked by a small buoy (as seen in the two pictures) attached to a rope attached to the concrete base. We use the rope to pull the diffuser with the telehandler if needed.

It does not look like much water moving in the pictures of the diffusers operating. But pictures are deceiving. They are actually moving so much water I worried about it being too much. But they have been running over a month now with no problem that I can detect. I back-drug some washed in dirt in the sediment pond one day with a front end loader bucket. Mucked up the water and made it muddy in the north end of the pond. Within 30 minutes the diffuser had moved the muddy water from the north end of the pond, under the upper water, and made a mushroom cloud of dirty water surrounding the diffuser. Within a few hours the pond was homogenized. So these diffusers are moving a considerable amount of water.

Edit 5/20/17: the home made diffuser base works fine after a couple seasons, but if doing it again I would change one thing. The concrete base is heavy which is great to keep it on the bottom. But the foktprint is so small it easily sinks into loose clay or muck. I would make provision for the base to have a bigger footprint either by setting it in a plastic tub or attaching a bigger base. Otherwise it works great. I actually like them better than the boughten plastic bases filled with sand.


Description: trenching in the pipe to the sediment pond which is behind forage pond
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Description: Oldest grandson learning to run our old trencher
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Description: home made diffuser base
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Description: making the base
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Description: single 9" Matala membrane diffuser
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Description: also made and added additional FHM spawning structure
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Description: Pondmaster AP100 in temporary housing
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Description: diffuser in sediment pond
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Description: diffuser operating in forage pond
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Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond production - 10/13/14 05:46 AM
Mid September and finally FULL POOL. And holding water.....hooray! grin

Notice I have very little dam above full pool. Actually only a foot, with a six inch overflow pipe and the emergency overflow set at the top of the 6" pipe. So 6" of dam left after the pipe is at full flow. Risky? Probably. But this is a very small pond with very limited runoff. I built it and if it breeches the dam I'll fix it. So I can take risks that a contractor dare not. Plus if it fails the main pond is a mere two foot lower level and the forage will run into the main pond. For me having the extra depth in the forage pond was worth the risk of pushing the limits on the dam. Judgement call. Not professional. Not recommended. No self respecting engineer would do it. Luckily I'm a farmer instead of an engineer. grin I think it will work.

Some FHM produced from the mini forage pond. I have not weighed what has been taken out of the pond so far but I would guess it to be at least a half of a 5 gallon bucket full. Still plenty of fry left behind to grow up before winter.

Saw some of the RES on beds earlier in the summer. They looked to be about 5" long. Have not seen any recruitment so maybe the youngsters were just practicing for next year.

Edit: the big pile of dirt in the background is dirt taken out of the main pond shallow spawning area while the pond was low. I decided did not need that much spawning area. It is not part of the forage pond project. Whole different story.


Description: Finally full pool!
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Description: FHM production from the pond
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Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond production - 10/13/14 06:50 AM
Finally! This thread is up to date with this post. I've been taking pictures as things progressed but drug my feet on getting the updates here. Will try to do better in the future.

Only additional plans for this mini forage pond is to use it and I have just a little more crushed rock to put around the edge to cover the bigger stuff. Other than the rock, IT IS DONE.

Will try to remember to do updates about the production that comes out of it.

One thing I forgot to add earlier, put 400 PK shrimp (grass shrimp, glass shrimp, ghost shrimp, whatever) in this pond earlier this year. Was not sure if there would be enough habitat for them to survive the FHM swarms and the RES. But happy to say just a couple days ago used a dip net to swipe up along some of the bank and grass and snagged a few. They are not thick like I would like to see them. But at least some are still there. Maybe now with some more cover around the banks and me quit using the backhoe on the pond they will have a chance to thrive. Hopefully if they do well in this pond, I can use the production to stock my other ponds. Caught a few in a minnow trap about a month ago and transferred them to the sediment pond. My hopes are fry will bet washed out the overflow into the main pond during high rainfall events.

All ponds at full pool as of yesterday.......FINALLY. We have had very limited runoff for about a year and a half now. Pond went into winter last year over a foot low and never filled spring of 2014. Rare for us to not have high rainfall events in either fall or spring. Was two foot low this summer. Will feel a lot better about going into this winter with a full pond. Water looks lots better now with some flow through.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. I know. You Texas guys are singing "cry me a river". I hear you guys talking about DRY ponds or six foot low ponds. I feel for you. It is common for us to get dry in the summer and ponds drop some, but rare for them to not get recharged sometime during the year.

Feels good to have a project completed. Now if I can get that dog house sized building finished for the aeration pumps.................... As Rosann Rosana Danna always used to say......"It's alllllllways sumptin"


Description: water flowing our the overflow of mini forage pond
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Description: 4 more inches of rain after 3 earlier and full pool of main pond - hooray
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Description: water running into main pond at full pool from forage pond
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Description: outlet side of overflow pipe
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Description: view from main pond
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Description: view from north looking south
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Description: full pool at overflow
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Description: emergency overflow upper right. Weeds where old original pond ended
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Description: enough work, time to go fishing
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Description: Back you go. See you again in two or three years. Stocked 3-2013
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Posted By: FireIsHot Re: Mini forage pond production - 10/13/14 01:01 PM
snrub, you've got some cool stuff going on up there! Smaller ponds are way more fun than bigger ones.
Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond production - 10/13/14 04:15 PM
I'm enjoying them.

Since my old pond did not work out for my RES pond, got my eye on a ravine near the old pond that could be dammed up at about half an acre......................... I gotta quit thinking about this stuff! Got enough projects in the works! grin
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Mini forage pond production - 10/14/14 12:21 AM
Why did you do the rock lining?
Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond production - 10/14/14 01:21 AM
Good question. Several reasons I guess.

I liked the rock around my main pond for bank erosion prevention.

The acidic clay needed lime anyway, so lining the pond with limestone rock took care of that. Probably 75% coverage of the bottom and sides.

I was considering crayfish at the time, and figured the rocks would be good habitat. Crawdads never appeared this year in number because of the drought (so I never found a source of local variety to capture and put in the pond) and once I decided to try the PK shrimp the crayfish idea went away. Figured the crayfish would do away with my PK shrimp. Crawdads are mean, feisty little critters. We've kept them in an aquarium before.

It was a small enough pond it did not take that much rock. I kind of started on the water line around the shore and forgot to quit. The rock is not deep at all. As close as I could come to a single layer of it.

But the reason above all others is because of an observation in my main pond. The limestone rocks seemed to be an ideal substrate for quick algae growth. And every time the water fell and rose again on the rock and a fresh batch of algae grew, snails multiplied by the gazillions. Normally that would not be such a good thing. But since my emphasis for this pond was to raise RES fry from a few adult brood stock into fingerlings, in addition to the FHM's, I knew the RES would have a much better chance of thriving if I had their preferred food in abundance. So it was the snail explosion in the main pond on the rock that induced me to use a lot of it in this small pond. I actually inoculated this pond with algae and snails as it first filled.

Right or wrong, good or bad, that is what I did.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Mini forage pond production - 10/14/14 02:59 AM
Makes a lotta sense
Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond production - 04/13/15 06:29 PM
Update on the forage pond.

Been taking FHM out that I catch in a minnow trap and transfer to my old pond. Probably just snacks for the GSF as there is not a lot of cover in that pond yet for them to hide. But I have gobs of FHM as well as small BG still in my main pond so don't figure I need them there and want to reduce some of the biomass in the forage pond to be sure it does not get over loaded. LMB should spawn in the main pond this spring so will likely be able to use the FHM production from the forage pond to supplement the main pond once I have more bass mouths to feed, but plenty of forage there at the moment. Have not started up the aeration yet this spring in this forage pond but will soon. Lots of feeding activity from the FHM's.

But the main reason for the post is to put a picture up of some RES reproduction. I saw small RES on nests in very shallow water late last year. Was not sure if they would get a spawn off or not, but apparently they did. Picture below is one of two RES I have caught so far in minnow trap along with the FHM's. Hope I have lots more. The idea is to grow them up to a size my LMB in the main pond will not eat them and transfer the RES to my main pond. I only had a very few RES in the original stocking of the pond then another 125 later in the fall (3 acre pond). So I would like to see some more RES in the main pond thus the idea of raising replacements in this forage pond. Only RES and FHM's in this forage pond currently. Later when the water warms up a little more will seine the shallow areas to try and see just how much RES reproduction I got.


Description: First RES reproduction in the forage pond
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Description: 2 1/2" RES from forage pond
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Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mini forage pond production - 04/13/15 07:52 PM
Snrub,

I am doing on a little study on minnow traps. If you get a chance, please post a picture of the trap you used to catch the RES and, if possible, measure the entrance openings for me. It would be really appreciated!

Bill D.
Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond production - 04/14/15 04:11 AM
Will do. I have three different minnow traps and they all catch minnows differently. A very slight difference on opening size makes one style wire mesh catch lots of small BG along with FHM while the other one catches few BG and nearly all FHM. The traps look identical from a distance, but up close one has a slightly larger mesh and has a circular wire welded in the opening (the other is just the rough expanded metal for the opening which makes for the slightly larger opening). The third style I have is plastic but of the same general shape and design. It does not catch as much of anything except it does have some tabs in the opening that can be cut out to make the opening bigger, which I may try later this year.

I thought the one with the welded in wire circle in the opening looked like a better constructed unit and bought several of them. But the mesh is slightly larger and when I drop in fish pellets through the opening, most fall out of the mesh while the other trap holds the bait in better. Saves a lot of time not having to put the pellets in a sack or anything. But if I'm wanting only FHM the trap with the wire ring will keep out more small BG. If I'm wanting to trap small BG or GSF, the one with the slightly larger rough opening wins hands down. Amazing what a tiny fraction of an inch difference (or maybe the smooth entrance of the wire ring???) at the entrance makes a difference.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mini forage pond production - 04/14/15 02:46 PM
Thanks Snrub!
Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond production - 04/15/15 06:02 PM
Plastic trap from Walmart 3/4" opening. Trap with larger mesh with wire ring welded in opening 7/8", smaller mesh trap with rough opening 1". Pics later tonight when time available.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mini forage pond production - 04/15/15 06:29 PM
Thanks Snrub!
Posted By: snrub Re: Mini forage pond production - 04/16/15 03:24 AM
Pictures with descriptions in the title.

Picture 25 is of the plastic minnow trap. Under the right conditions I have caught a lot of minnows with it, but generally I don't feel like it performs as well as the wire mesh traps. This could be nothing more than a function of the smaller opening of about 3/4" compared to 7/8 and 1" in the two different wire mesh traps. One problem with the plastic trap is that it floated. Originally I put a rock in to weigh it down, but eventually added the piece of metal strap in the photo to keep it on the bottom. I thought it odd to build a trap that would not work without adding some sort of weight. Or maybe it is supposed to float around at will and I just did not use it correctly. There are some tabs that can be cut out of the opening to make it a little bigger and I may try that. I hardly ever catch small BG in this trap (likely because of the small opening). Has three plastic clip pins holding it together which look like will not last as long before they break compared to the metal traps and somewhat clumsy to use.

Starting with picture 08 is the trap I like best overall. It has a 1" opening (with no reinforcing ring and just the bare expanded metal for the opening) and is built out of slightly smaller mesh than the other metal traps that I have. One downside to this trap if I am trying to trap only FHM is at times it will trap a lot of 1-2" BG. It is easy to tell when I pull it out of the water in my big pond if it has a bunch of BG in it --- it has a distinctive louder "patter" sound as the BG flip around a lot harder than the FHM's. This trap is my best trap to catch small GSF out of my old pond. The GSF have a more fusiform shape than BG and I can capture 2.5" and even occasionally up to 3" GSF with it. The slightly larger opening I suspect is the reason this trap catches more BG and GSF than the others. The GSF are also just natural chow hounds and I think they try harder to get in to the feed also. Mild spring steel single clip pin that rusts. Mesh is small enough on this trap and the plastic trap that I can simply dump some fish pellets through the opening and throw it in the water. Pellets for the most part stay in.

Starting at picture 18 is the third style trap I have. I actually bought several of these, thinking it was just like the previous metal trap only better with the wire welded into the opening for reinforcement. What I did not realize is this trap is built lighter. Either the gauge of the metal is lighter or else just the expanded metal having larger openings makes it weaker, but this trap needs the extra reinforcement in the opening because the metal is enough weaker I have actually noticed just with normal use the whole trap gets some distortion in its shape. Nothing serious enough to render it unusable, but the other trap without the ring in the opening is actually a more sturdy trap. The ring makes this trap have a 7/8 opening compared to the 1" in the other trap. This trap will also trap very few small BG compared to the other metal trap. Stainless single clip pin that does not rust but the fitup on closing not quite as good as the other metal trap. If I dump pellets in the opening of this trap unless they are larger pellets, half fall out making baiting this trap not as easy.

Maybe more than you ever wanted to know Bill.


Description: Plastic minnow trap
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Description: 3/4" open made even smaller by the plastic tabs
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Description: Trap I like best
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Description: Metal minnow trap with smaller mesh and rough opening
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Description: rough opening with 1" size
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Description: Pellet for comparison to other metal trap mesh size
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Description: Third trap with larger mesh and reinforced opening at 7/8"
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Description: same pellet as other trap to show comparative mesh size
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Description: notice deformation of shape because of lighter material
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Posted By: snrub RES reproduction success - 06/03/16 02:15 PM
I had originally stocked this pond with RES and FHM, and later threw in a dozen GSH. The pond has never performed like I had hoped for RES reproduction untill now.

At times I have wondered if I even had any RES left in this small pond, but I would throw a cast net and after several throws would at least get a few of various sizes. But never any significant numbers of fry.

Well that changed a few nites ago. Put out a couple of minnow traps and had a dozen 2" RES. I could redily see the small dot on their opercular tab and were easily identifiable. Also caught a considerable number of GSH fry, which up until this year the major minnow catch was FHM.

That is all good news. The bad news is I found one 2" GSF in with the bunch of RES. I don't know where these buggers come from, but they come from somewhere. So I either have an adult GSF pair in there, or it was just an outcross from unpure RES genetics in my original stockers. I hand sorted every fish that went into this pond for identification, but the fish were only 3" at that time.

Anyway, am glad to see finally some significant RES reproduction. The original intent was to raise RES in this pond for transfer into my other ponds since my original stocking in those ponds was lighter than I wanted and could not get any additional RES at the time.

Will see how things progress. My sediment pond has RES and CNBG (with a few bonus GSF) stocked in it and I get a few RES fingerlings there. But for every RES I get dozens of CNBG. So the CNGB have reproduced like gangbusters and the RES not so much so. Or perhaps my trap harvest methods just select for the CNBG. Need to brush up on my cast net skills and see if more RES are there that I am unaware of.
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: RES reproduction success - 06/03/16 04:01 PM
GSF are EVERYWHERE. We need to set up game cameras to see if the GSF maybe get a swimming start, build up speed, and then fins flapping scoot across land from BOW to BOW? How else do they seem to find their way in every puddle?
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: RES reproduction success - 06/03/16 04:20 PM
SNRUB,
Reading above you say that you had plans for PK shrimp and went light or not at all on the crayfish. Did the PK shrimp plan work out? Do you see them? Do they enter your minnow traps? Would love to know how they survive with predators, who eats them, and where you see them (maybe you only see them at night with a strong light?) You would think they would struggle to survive with so many panfish predators.
Posted By: snrub Re: RES reproduction success - 06/03/16 07:50 PM
Glad you brought that up. I need to do some checking to see if I still have any of the PK shrimp. I have not noticed any in the traps but they are easy to miss if not looking for them, being clear and not very big.

I will pay more attention to the traps and I need to go out at night with a dip net and see if I can net some. I hope they are still there. But you are right about the predators and this pond till very recently had no submerged weeds and only a small patch of spike rush now for cover. The only real cover they have, and there is lots of it, are 3" or so diameter crushed limestone rocks.
Posted By: snrub Re: RES reproduction success - 06/04/16 04:33 PM
A couple pictures of the RES fry.

Set three minnow traps and checked in about 15 minutes and had 9 small RES and a few minnows. I don't know if the RES are just wandering in by accident or are actively going in after the feed. I do feed in this pond daily for the FHM population and it is possible that the RES are also eating the feed.

Guess I could try setting some traps with and without feed and see if it makes a difference.


Description: RES trapped in minnow trap
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Description: Two of the larger RES fiongerlings
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Posted By: SetterGuy Re: RES reproduction success - 06/04/16 05:08 PM
Very cool! Mine are still sitting on nests near the bank. I think. Or, at least I hope. If all the nests I'm seeing aren't RES, then that means they are my supposedly, HBG.
I'll try some nets and traps next week. I'm very curious if any of the 20+ YP ribbons I counted, produced any fry.
Your pics of the RES fry, look like mine did when they were stocked last April.
Posted By: snrub Re: RES reproduction success - 06/04/16 07:37 PM
Your HBG males likely will make nests. There hopefully should be very few females to take them up on their offer though.
Posted By: snrub Re: RES reproduction success - 07/18/16 03:37 AM
Some more pictures of RES fingerlings I am raising in this forage pond to transfer to my main pond. RES is supposed to be the only sunfish in this pond. But I have trapped a fingerling GSF (likely came from main pond swimming up the overflow during high water event) so who knows.

Most look like pure RES but occasionally I get a few that look like they could have some GSF genes in them. Hard for me to tell for sure with a 2" fish. I know they are not GSF because I also have pictures of them and will put one below to show. As I start catching them again from the main pond as they get bigger (or catch some larger ones from this forage pond) maybe I can get a better idea. Funny thing is, I was wanting some GRES hybrids. I just did not think they would be coming from this pond!

Descriptions of what I think they are on the pictures. But I would not bet money on any of the ID's. Looking at the pictures the difference in the GSF (last picture is from a different pond) and the RES might not look that much different. But I can tell you, in person looking at them, there is a lot of difference. I can spot a GSF in a trap full of fingerlings easily. I can also tell the hybrids from the CNBG fingerlings easily. They are very apparent when side by side in person. The pictures do not do them justice. The differences just do not show up as well in the pictures as in real life. They likely would if I had a better camera.

I hardly ever get a FHM in the traps any more in this pond. Either the RES have done away with them or the GSH have out produced them. But I have a tremendous population of GSH, the other minnow in this pond. They are going gangbusters this year.


Description: 3 RES fingerlings
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Description: 4 RES fingerlings and some GSH
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Description: I think these may be GRES (RESxGSF) hybrids but unsure
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Description: For comparison a GSF top and HBG bottom from pre-sediment pond
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Posted By: snrub Re: RES reproduction success - 07/18/16 04:04 AM
Some of the parental stock from this forage pond. I caught these two RES back in 10-31-2015. I think one is female and one is male but unsure. Some of the above fingerlings could be from these parents. I caught both of these within a couple feet of the same spot just off the bank one right after the other. Dragging a 1/32 oz jig up the bank very slowly with a 3/4" piece of plastic worm split in half to look like a bug. Ala Shorty!!!! style grin


Description: RES male???
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Description: Urogenital opening of above fish
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Description: RES female??? sorry, no pic of opening on this one
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Posted By: snrub Re: RES reproduction success - 09/03/16 03:38 AM
Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
SNRUB,
Reading above you say that you had plans for PK shrimp and went light or not at all on the crayfish. Did the PK shrimp plan work out? Do you see them? Do they enter your minnow traps? Would love to know how they survive with predators, who eats them, and where you see them (maybe you only see them at night with a strong light?) You would think they would struggle to survive with so many panfish predators.


Canyoncreek I went out a few nights ago with a dip net and tried to net some PK shrimp. Never got any. Also have been watching minnow traps better and have seen none. I'm afraid my PK shrimp did not make it. This forage pond is swimming with GS and maybe the predation was just too much for them.
Posted By: snrub Re: RES reproduction success - 09/03/16 03:41 AM
Caught another of the RES brood stock late this afternoon. Small hook and small bait seems to be what it takes for me to catch RES. I switched to a tiny hook and caught this guy as well as several 3-4" RES out of this forage pond.

Edit: thread with pictures of some of the offspring coming from this pond. Fingerling identification


Description: RES out of forage pond not quite 9"
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Description: same fish with my ugly mug
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Posted By: snrub Re: RES reproduction success - 09/20/16 10:47 PM
Caught this small RES out of the main pond. It could have been recruitment there or it very well could be one of the many fingerling RES I have raised in this forage pond that were trapped in minnow traps and transferred to the main pond.


Description: small RES out of main pond caught near dusk
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Posted By: Bill D. Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/21/16 02:55 AM
Dang man! I understand the gloves when I see the dorsal spikes on that guy....must be about like picking up a wiggling cactus!

I could use a few of those at Mutt Pond if you are ever headed this way.... smile
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/21/16 04:18 AM
What is it that Bruce Condello has as his tag line?

"Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors". Bruce Condello

Redear Sunfish information links
Posted By: snrub Raising the level - 10/10/16 01:54 AM
I raised the level of this pond recently. This one actually went as planned. Inserted a 6" plastic schedule 40 pipe extender, cut a 6" 90 degree fitting to the height I wanted the water, and installed it on the pipe extender. It all fit tight enough I did not even glue it. Just put a single self tapping screw in the top of the 90 to make sure it stayed in place.

Raised the water level about 6". Should give some added insurance against winter kill for the RES I raise in this pond. There is hardly any dam height above water level (maybe 6-8") but the emergency spillway is about 3" above the new full pool level and this pond gets very limited runoff (maybe 2 acres). It does not get near the inflow as its sister sediment pond and the dam has very good grass established.

Just got a 4" rain and all was well.

Caught a couple RES from it tonight.



Description: Pipe extender installed into the 6" sched 40 overflow pipe
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Description: cut down 90 degree fitting installed
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Description: 4" rain and new full pool level!
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Description: Forage pond at new full pool in front, sediment pond in back
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Description: Larger RES
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Description: Smaller RES
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Posted By: snrub Re: Raising the level - 10/24/16 05:07 AM
What I believe to be a RESxGSF hybrid. There are supposed to be only RES in this pond but either some of the stocked RES had some GSF genes or a GSF swam up my overflow pipe and contaminated the pond. I have caught a few GSF looking fingerlings, quite a number or RES fingerlings, and some that appear to be hybrids.

The first two pictures are of the same fish and I believe it to be one of the RESxGSF hybrids. It was caught by hook and line in this RES only forage pond.

The third picture is a hybrid caught out of my main pond that I THINK...... key word think......... is one of these hybrids I moved from this forage pond to the main pond at an earlier time and it is all grown up.

Welcome any opinions.


Description: RESxGSF hybrid I think
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Description: Other side of same fish
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Description: What I believe to be one of these hybrids grown to about 8"
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Description: Same fish different angle
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Posted By: CMM Re: Raising the level - 10/24/16 04:33 PM
Snrub, I am still learning about various hybrids. Can you point out characteristics that make you believe this is a resXgsf hybrid rather than a plain gsf?
Thanks.
Posted By: snrub Re: Raising the level - 10/24/16 05:04 PM
I'll try. Keep in mind I am no expert.

First off is the fact that this is SUPPOSED to be a RES only pond. Had this fish been taken from my main pond there would have been other more likely possibilities. But the fact that this fish came from a pond that was stocked with RES makes the probability it has RES genes much higher. That is my first clue. I have probabilities in my corner.

Second, look at the opercular tab. Notice the orange portion of the border is relatively distinct. My GSF have a translucent orangish border but the border usually wraps around the opercular tab more of the radius and is distinctly translucent. To me this orange tab is more of a solid nature reminiscent of a RES.

Third, notice the mouth size. It is large like a GSF but the relative size of the mouth in relationship to the body height does not look large enough to be pure GSF.

Fourth, notice the green bars below the eyes. These are reminiscent of GSF bars but they lack the intensity of my pure GSF. RES often have a mottled cheek that are less bar like of the GSF but still have a pattern. The bars on this fish in coloration and shape look like some blend of what I would expect from both a GSF and a RES.

Fifth, the general body shape is similar to a GSF but to my eyes it has just a little too much height in relation to the mouth size to be pure GSF.

Sixth, the coloration with the blue-green flecks in the lower part of the body towards the tail says GSF. I do not see any of the black flecks in that area that I often see in my pure GSF.

It would be pretty easy to just call this a GSF. But the orange tab on the opercular does not look just right. The green bars do not look just right. The mouth size in relation to the vertical height of the body does not look just right. And it has some characteristics of a RES and it came from a pond full of RES that was not supposed to have any GSF in it.

That is what I see. Now I will wait to see if the experts tell me it is a GSF, LOL. I'll try to look for a good GSF picture of a fish about the same size and edit this post with it so you have a comparison.
Posted By: snrub Some GSF examples - 10/24/16 05:48 PM
Here are some examples of what I believe are pure GSF with the characteristics that I commonly see in GSF.

And finally the last picture the same fish posted in the previous post.


Description: GSF
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Description: GSF
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Description: GSF
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Description: pair GSF
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Description: The fish I believe to be a RESxGSF hybrid in previous post
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Posted By: snrub Re: Some GSF examples - 10/24/16 05:54 PM
Now some examples of RES, all caught from the same pond except the one designated that came from my main pond.

And the last picture of the same fish from the previous post i believe to be a hybrid RESxGSF

So what do you all think? Is it a RESxGSF hybrid or just a lowly GSF??????


Description: RES fingerling
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Description: RES fingerling
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Description: RES brood fish
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Description: RES
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Description: RES from my main pond instead of the brood pond like the others
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Description: The Fish from previous post I believe to be RESxGSF hybrid
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Posted By: CMM Re: Some GSF examples - 10/24/16 10:44 PM
Thanks Snrub. Can't wait to see what everyone else thinks. These hybrids are tricky for me. I have pulled some I think are bgXre, but just am not sure.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some GSF examples - 10/25/16 01:28 AM
Here is one out of my main pond that I posted a while back that I think may be a RESxBG or BGxRES.

It does not show well in the picture, but on the opercular tab where there would be a red margin in a RES this fish almost looked like that area was red but covered with a thin layer of balck. The other thing that makes it look like RES genetics is the mottled cheeks under the eye.


Description: Possible BGxRES hybrid
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Description: same fish, different picture
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Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Some GSF examples - 10/25/16 02:48 PM
To me I think all your identifications are okay except for the last two showing the large (possible BGXRES hybrid). Without seeing the actual fish this looks more like a pure BG to me than a hybrid. What features did this fish have to make you think it was a hybrid; something on the gill flap? Notice on this fish the size of the mouth - it is essentially the same size mouth as a BG. I think any significant amount of GSF or RES genetics will produce a larger mouth. The body coloration also leans more toward BG than a hybrid. However I get cautious using body coloration for fish ID especially since your fish trend toward lighter washed out colors due to turbid conditions.
Posted By: ewest Re: Some GSF examples - 10/25/16 08:56 PM
Look like BG to me.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some GSF examples - 10/25/16 09:34 PM
Ok, we will go with BG.

The main thing that said to me it might have some RES was the mottled markings on the cheeks. I just had not seen that in any of my BG but had seen it in RES.

But the mouth is small and does not have the sometimes extended mouth like a RES.

Thanks for the input guys.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some GSF examples - 10/28/16 12:35 AM
A few more fish from this forage pond stocked with RES.

First three pictures are of a particularly nice hybrid. Likely RESxGSF.

Next two pictures are of another smaller hybrid RESxGSF that show particularly good markings.

The last two fish are a couple of representative RES that come from this pond. I caught one bigger than the one in the picture tonight but it was all blurry so did not post it. Also caught a 10" hybrid tonight but did not take a picture.

As I catch the hybrids I move them to the main pond. I put the pure RES back for brood stock, although tonight I did move 3 nice ones to my sediment pond that had the fish kill. If I find them floating tomorrow morning, will have to wait a little longer. I think they are going to be ok. There is already a massive population of snails since the fish kill, so if they live they will have plenty to eat.


Description: RESxGSF hybrid pic 1
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Description: right side
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Description: left side fish 1
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Description: Smaller RESxGSF left side
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Description: Smaller RESxGSF hybrid right side
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Description: RES from this pond last night
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Description: RES from tonight
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Posted By: TGW1 Re: Some GSF examples - 10/28/16 12:27 PM
snrub, those at some nice res and hyb's. I like the res, how old are they? 3 or 4? and what size were they when stocked? wished I had some that size in the pond.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some GSF examples - 10/28/16 02:36 PM
Thanks, I was happy with them although there was supposed to be no GSF influence in that pond. I was actually wanting some RESxGSF hybrids but was not expecting them to come from this pond. crazy

The initial fish were stocked mid October in 2014 so right at two years ago. I'm pretty happy with them.

The difficulty I have now is deciding how many and what to take out. I have no idea for sure how many large ones there are in this little 1/20th acre pond. I've been taking out all the Golden Shiners I can trap as they are pretty thick and taking out whatever small RES and Hybrids go into the trap. I suspect over this last year I have moved at least a hundred of the offspring. Ideally, if I could I would remove everything except about 3 or4 each of male and female RES, but that will never be possible without draining the pond.

I did stick about 20 2" fingerling RES into this pond yesterday. I got a batch of 100 from Dunn's fish farm truck to repopulate my sediment pond that had the fish kill and decided to put a few in this pond simply for genetic diversity. The Fingerlings I got from Dunn's looked really good this time (unlike the original fish stocked in this pond from them).

If they are like my BG Tracy they will grow really well to about the size I am catching, then they seem to plateau and not have really good growth thereafter. But I think that is because my LMB are not doing their job on keeping the recruitment's thinned out in my big pond. In this pond I have no predators so it is up to me to remove enough fish so they do not stunt. I am pretty sure that at least some of the RES have learned on their own to eat the feed I put in this pond for the minnows. That is how I have learned to catch them. Throw some feed out on one side of the pond and fish while the minnows are eating. Once in a while I can see a bigger swirl near the bank and if I throw my jig in the area I have been able to catch some of them. So I am pretty sure they are coming over to get the feed as it soaks up and sinks. Funny I have tried and tried to fish out in a few feet of water, but nearly all I catch is about a foot from the bank in a foot or less water depth. Seems like they come right up next to shore, I assume because that is where the snails hang out.

I just got in some Optimal and Optimal JR and have started using it for the feed in this pond. Now that I know the RES (at least some of them) are eating it, the rest of this year and next I am going to keep them on Optimal and see how they do.
Posted By: snrub Some more RES - 10/30/16 02:29 AM
Couple more RES out of this forage pond from tonight. All together caught 6 RES (moved them to my sediment pond that had the fish kill) from 5" up to the size pictured and several RESxGSF hybrids that went into my main pond.

The GS seem to like the Optimal feed. Of course they like the AM MVP also. I'm pretty sure at least some of the RES are eating the feed because I have caught on that is the way I am catching them. I throw a little feed out in front of me, wait till the activity gets going good on the feeding, then put my small jig in the water a foot or two out from the bank. I think the RES hear the feeding activity and come over in the feeding mood and I catch them.


Description: Nice fat RES
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Description: Smaller RES
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Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: Some more RES - 10/30/16 03:05 AM
Snrub,
Are you still using the Chartreuse "Gulp Alive" waxies on the jigs?

BTW, I have caught three nice eater channel cats on them.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 10/30/16 03:28 AM
Definitely. I also use some other of the Gulp baits but just tonight I was using the green waxies. In fact I only had to change the bait once to catch 6 RES and several more RESxGSF hybrids all out of my forage pond.

Using the smallest hook 1/32 oz plain jig head I can find and either one or two of the waxies on the hook. The RES seem to be timid bites. It will be tug, tug, then they take it and I catch them. All about a foot or two out from the bank and in 12-18" of water. Even the 10" ones.

I'm throwing some feed out, then when the GS take to hitting the feed the RES come over and I catch them. I am sure some of the RES are taking feed. I would think they would have to be to be fat and sassy as they are in such a small pond. 10 inchers in two years. Have not weighed any of them, but the biggest one must have been a pound.

I also catch CC on them out of the main pond. Up to 3#. Pretty good fight for a rod set up to catch BG. They definitely pull some drag.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 10/31/16 02:08 AM
Another 8" RES.

I finally figured out my source of all the RESxGSF hybrids. I figured there must be at least one adult GSF in the pond. Either that or one of the RES had GSF genes and was passing them on. But there seemed like there was just too many of the hybrids. Yet I have never caught a large, full blooded GSF even though I have fished the pond quite a bit lately.

Up to tonight. Tonight I fished around the cover of the pallets I have for FHM spawning substrate. And one right after the other caught the two GSF in pictures two and three. Both were decent size but the first one was a tub. Fat and healthy. Transferred those two over to the main pond and the RES to my sediment pond.


Description: 8" RES
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Description: A really nice GSF, if there is such a thing. This one could go trophy in my main pond
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Description: And another large GSF but slightly smaller than the above picture
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Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 03/28/17 03:10 PM
Fished this 1/20th acre forage pond for a while yesterday. LOTS of hybrids (RESxGSF) 5-6" long. Moved all of those I caught, about 15, to the main pond. Caught several nice RES and a few smaller ones. The hybrids are much more aggressive so it is pretty easy to catch them. Throw out a little feed in one area and the fish are soon concentrated there and easy to catch. I want to move all the hybrids out I can catch as well as all the smaller RES, to make sure the biomass level does not get too heavy. I return all the large good looking RES I catch to spawn and create more.

Descriptions along with the pictures.

Edit: See pictures in post directly above for the parental GSF stock creating the hybrids. Also compare to the hybrid picture below.


Description: One of the nicer (male I think) RES brood stock
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Description: Female RES????
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Description: Potential male RES - bad way to handle him but he was being uncooperative
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Description: RESxGSF hybrid. This was the largest of about 15 I moved to main pond
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Posted By: farmallsc Re: Some more RES - 03/28/17 05:10 PM
I'm enjoying your thread. I have a question about your catching methods. Keep in mind, I'm asking not judging. I've been wanting to start netting, weighing and measuring my fish. I kinda would like to do this ever 30 to 45 days. I thought about throwing the feed out and netting them, but I was afraid I would spook them and then maybe they wouldn't come up to feed. Do you think it makes a difference or should I try to catch them at other times rather than at feeding times.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 03/29/17 02:58 AM
Others can probably give you better advice. But from what I have read it is not really recommended fishing where you feed as it will tend to make the fish avoid the food or get hook shy. If that is the case I suspect casting a net would be even more disruptive, but I do not know that as a fact.

In my case with this pond, the brood stock RES I really don't care if they get hook shy. In fact I would just as soon not catch them generally, although I do like to hook into one once in a while to see what size they and how they are doing. But if they get hook shy, it is probably best for both them and me.

Most of the other fish I move to another pond anyway. So they get caught once and moved to another environment. That is the real purpose of this pond, raise RES to populate my main pond. That and golden shiners (used to be FHM but between the RES and a couple GSF, the FHM got extirpated). I trap and move small fish with minnow traps and larger ones by hook and line.

Another thing is I don't really fish this pond all that often. So the fish might get fed 30 times for every one time I feed and fish.

Sorry I can't really give you a good answer, but in my case I am not too worried about putting the fish off feed by luring them in with feed. The times I have done it, I throw out some more feed and they are right back to the trough.

I think what I am mostly feeding are the RESxGSF hybrids and golden shiners. And to a much lesser degree some of the RES.
Posted By: farmallsc Re: Some more RES - 04/02/17 06:39 AM
What is your thoughts on the GSFxRES?
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 04/02/17 06:38 PM
Ask me 4 years from now. laugh

I like some hybrid sunfish in my pond. I've only been doing this 4 years, so another 4 years down the road I might have a completely different attitude. But for now I like some hybrids mixed in with my regular BG. Why? Because when nothing else wants to bite a hook, I can nearly always get a GSF or a HBG to bite. They are just a lot more aggressive by nature. So I like to catch them.

The GRES (GSFxRES)? Time will tell. Most fish farms sell HBG as BG male x GSF female cross. I have wondered if a RES male x GSF female would not be as good if better cross from a growth standpoint. RES can get a little bigger than BG. So I have wanted to try some. The few HBG that I originally had in my main pond were a few that were accidentally mixed in with my originally stocked BG. They were not supposed to be there, but I found that I liked catching them.

Fast forward to my forage pond. Was supposed to be only RES and FHM in the pond (and later I put a dozen GS). Well somehow at least two GSF got in there. Either by stocking mistake, swimming up the overflow, or who knows how. But they got there because if you look further up this thread I believe I posted pictures of two that are about 7" long that I caught and removed. There may be more, but I hope I have got them all fished out. GSF tend to be easy to catch in a pond full of RES because the RES are hard to catch and the GSF relatively easy.

So those two GSF (of which I am hoping they were both either male or female and not one of each mad ) created a lot of baby GRES hybrids. So I got my wish of having some GSFxRES hybrids quite by accident. To date I have not trapped or caught any YOY of what I thought were pure GSF. So maybe I got lucky and the two GSF were of the same, likely female. The reason I say female is because a male GSF x female RES is an unlikely cross in nature (at least that is what I have read - can be done in a lab though) while the opposite RES male x GSF female is very easy and readily happens in the absence of the GSF female finding a suitable GSF male.

But I digress, giving you a long winded explanation while not answering your question. Why do I like GRES? I don't know. I just do. Same way with RES. Somehow from the time I first learned they exist, I have been fascinated with them.

Some more pictures of GRES caught yesterday. I know they are GRES hybrids (RESxGSF)and not HBG (BGxGSF) because in this particular forage pond there are none and never have been any BG.

Most people find it very hard to catch RES from their pond. My personal theory on that subject is it is because there are probably a thousand hungry BG trying to get to the hook before the one in a thousand RES which tends to be a persnickety biter. Just numbers alone put odds against catching them, then add their behavior and more persnickety diet and the average pond owner rarely catches one. But get them in a pond by themselves, they are catch-able.

I'm posting lots of GRES hybrids because they are a more unusual cross than a HBG and the pictures might help others identify RESxGSF (GRES) hybrids from their ponds.


Description: GRES 1 from this pond
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Description: GRES 2 from this pond
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Description: Full blood RES for comparison from this same pond
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Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 04/02/17 07:14 PM
Originally Posted By: John F
Snrub,
Are you still using the Chartreuse "Gulp Alive" waxies on the jigs?

BTW, I have caught three nice eater channel cats on them.


John, I was using the Gulp Waxies yesterday and the fish were kind of slow to bite. Not catching as often as I usually do. Switched to a Gulp cricket and started catching fish. Could have been the bait change, or could have been the fish just started biting, but when I changed to the Gulp cricket started catching fish one right after the other in the big pond and caught a couple RES in the forage pond.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 09:48 AM
I have settled on Stubby Steves as my BG bait on a # 6 circle hook with a bobber and haven't used them for years. I've been doing it while feeding. The smaller fish can't take it and I haven't had but one that was deep hooked. They are relatively expensive but nothing I do at my ponds is affordable. Sooner or later they will probably figure out that the red and white bobber can be dangerous so I'll probably have to go to a fly rod with the Stubby.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 02:06 PM
Dave the reason I went to jig type hooks over regular ones is the fish don't seem to swallow them nearly as bad.

Seems like the circle hooks are hard to find in small sizes and I have a lot better luck catching BG with small baits and small hooks. Of course that could be the reason I don't catch many big fish too.

But I like action and if I am not catching anything find something else to do.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 02:21 PM
FWIW Small circle hooks can be hard to find. I get mine at Gander Mountain. I don't think they come in sizes smaller than 6.
Posted By: farmallsc Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 03:57 PM
Have you guys tried Allen hooks? They are right here in Texas. They throw 20% off sales pretty often
Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 04:27 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
FWIW Small circle hooks can be hard to find. I get mine at Gander Mountain. I don't think they come in sizes smaller than 6.


This.

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Posted By: jgr Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 04:28 PM
I have gotten #8 & #10 circle hooks at Cabela's. We still had plenty swallowers. My wife and I have by far had the best luck using a 1/32 jig with almost none swallowing the jig. We have used larger jigs but we have way more bait stolen. That is our experience and we have been working on this for while.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 06:41 PM
That is what I use also, the 1/32 oz jig and I have found some brands have smaller circumference hooks which I like.

I'm no expert angler by any means, but I also like the way jigs present the bait. I seem to have far better luck catching BG with small hooks and small bait. At least when I am fishing with bait.

Smallest size crank bait in LMB pattern works well on BG for me too.

But I do not catch a lot of fish much over 8". So either I may need to use bigger bait/hook or maybe the bigger fish just are not there. Opinions on that?

Edit: I do catch the occasional 3# CC with those 1/32 oz jigs though. grin
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 09:20 PM
John, I've also had trouble finding smaller circle hooks.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 09:25 PM
Originally Posted By: John F
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
FWIW Small circle hooks can be hard to find. I get mine at Gander Mountain. I don't think they come in sizes smaller than 6.


This.


Thanks! Now I'm on a quest for the smaller ones! smile
Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 10:22 PM
See the picture I posted earlier today. The circle hooks can be found in size #8 at any good tackle store or ordered online. The 1/64 ounce jigs can be ordered from "Lurepartsonline.com". Search on their site for Panfish Micro Jigs. The ones I use are 1/64 oz chartreuse with #10 hook.

I have fished extensively using a variety of methods for various species for over 55 years.
Posted By: FireIsHot Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 10:51 PM
I get my smaller circle hooks at fly shops.
Posted By: anthropic Re: Some more RES - 04/03/17 11:37 PM
Anybody try Stubby Steve lures on small circle hooks? I'm thinking of getting them for my grandkids, a lot cleaner & safer than worms.
Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: Some more RES - 04/04/17 12:24 AM
I used to use the #8 circle hooks I pictured. A couple of years ago I switched to 1/64 oz #10 hook yellow jigs tipped with "gulp alive" waxies. I can catch more BG and even RES and catch them faster on the small jigs and "gulp alive" than on the small circle hooks with live bait and 1/64 oz sinker 8" above. All on 4# or 6# test monofilament line.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Some more RES - 04/04/17 12:46 AM
Originally Posted By: John F
I used to use the #8 circle hooks I pictured. A couple of years ago I switched to 1/64 oz #10 hook yellow jigs tipped with "gulp alive" waxies. I can catch more BG and even RES and catch them faster on the small jigs and "gulp alive" than on the small circle hooks with live bait and 1/64 oz sinker 8" above. All on 4# or 6# test monofilament line.


John,

What technique do you use to fish the jigs?
Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: Some more RES - 04/04/17 01:13 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.

John,

What technique do you use to fish the jigs?


I use a 12 or 13 foot light or ultra light action crappie pole with 4# or 6# monofilament line. I pull out an amount of line past the tip almost the length of the pole. I swing the jig out as far as I can and slowly bring it back in by sweeping the pole to the side. These jigs are too light to cast; that's why I said swing them out. I try to keep the jig just off bottom. I can feel it if it touches the bottom.
The key is to tip the jig with some kind of tasty morsel. I prefer the chartreuse "Gulp Alive waxies" by Berkley.

A three pound CC puts up quite the fight on this rig. Last fall I pulled in a five pound plus CC.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 04/04/17 04:54 AM
I fished some late afternoon today. While feeding I noticed the fish were not coming to feed so I quit. Only a few takers for the feed. Guess the weather change and recent rain caused their behavior change. Maybe cold rain.

Did not figure I would catch much. Could not get a bite the way I usually fish for them, so went out on the dock and fished the bottom in 6-7' of water. Caught quite a few that way but mostly small ones, One 9" GSF and one nice 8" BG. I would bounce the jig off the bottom was the only way I could get them to bite. Mid water only caught one fish. Used the Gulp green waxies and pink maggots, but the Gulp worm (just a pinch) worked best this time.

I have seen really small jigs in fly shops. I think like 1/128 oz or something like that. Tiny. For sinking flys I assume.
Posted By: xraytrapper Re: Some more RES - 04/04/17 05:08 AM
I believe I got these at cabelas or possibly gander mountain. haven't tried them but read they were very good bluegill hooks.

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Posted By: farmallsc Re: Some more RES - 04/04/17 05:13 AM
Originally Posted By: snrub


I have seen really small jigs in fly shops. I think like 1/128 oz or something like that. Tiny. For sinking flys I assume.



Yes Sir.
I use a 1/124 for the Cap Spider.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=VzZekzILGRI
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 04/08/17 11:04 PM
Neat video. Wife says she will tie me some up!
Posted By: farmallsc Re: Some more RES - 04/08/17 11:46 PM
Originally Posted By: snrub
Neat video. Wife says she will tie me some up!



Good deal. Just fish it real slow and barely twitch.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Some more RES - 04/10/17 11:10 AM
I'm using a #6 circle hook with a Stubby Steve. Small BG's can't take it and the fish take it deep.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 04/26/17 10:14 PM
This forage pond was supposed to have only RES and FHM, with GS later introduced.

Some how it got a few GSF so I have been getting a number of RESxGSF hybrids from it. I keep posting pictures of these hybrids for future reference helping others identify RES hybrids. Out of several hundred fish caught and trapped out of this pond I have never had anything look like a BG. So I am certain these fish are hybrids composed of GSF and RES genetics. I have no idea the gender of each parent, but from literature I read it is much more likely to be a RES male and GSF female.

There is one picture of an adult GS from this pond and one picture of a HBG from my main pond. I do not know for sure but I believe the HBG to be one of the CNBG/GSF that originated from my sediment pond (where lots of hybrids were created from a few GSF contamination) that was transferred over to my main pond as a fingerling about a year ago.

Descriptions with pictures.


Description: RES/GSF hybrid
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Description: Pure RES - what is supposed to be coming out of this pond
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Description: Another RES/GSF hybrid
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Description: For comparison this one is out of main pond and I believe to be a CNBG/GSF that originated from my sediment pond a year ago
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Description: A GS out of this forage pond. They, the RES and a few GSF have pretty well extirpated the FHM population.
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Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 10/20/17 04:38 AM
Well I got good news and bad news.

The good news is that I caught a couple of RES out of this forage pond, which is what it is supposed to be raising. Pictures are in this RESxGSF hybrid thread so will not re-post them.

Also caught a few in the previous week.

The bad news is am still catching hybrids shown in the above linked photos and the worse news is it looks like I have a bang up crop of GSF late spawn fingerlings. I have not trapped much this year and by the looks of the picture below, I need to be.

I checked the three traps three times in the time span of about an hour and the results were a total of 4 RES fingerlings and a dozen or two of GSF and perhaps some hybrids. So my little forage pond is going "green" as in GSF and I do not like it. Will trap as many as I can in the next few weeks. I had removed about a half dozen 6-7" GSF a few weeks ago by hook and line. Looks like they got their deed done before I got them out.

The RES went back in the forage pond and the GSF went "away". I'm getting some RES recruitment but the GSF are keeping the numbers way low. I should have loads of RES fingerlings instead of all these GSF fingerlings.

Maybe I will have better luck in my pond dedicated to raising RES.


Description: Mostly GSF, a few GS and one RES
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Description: Same batch different view
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Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Some more RES - 10/20/17 02:34 PM
Snrub - you are finding out that the GSF are a highly aggressive species and in time will eventually crowd out the RES from your forage pond. I am convinced that young GSF, due to their aggressiveness and large mouth, eat a lot of fish fry.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 10/20/17 02:52 PM
Yes, at some point I will probably either need to nuke it and start over, or introduce some predators and end up with a tiny ordinary pond.

The one advantage that aggressiveness provides is it makes them easy to catch, both by trap and hook and line.

I can never get rid of them in that pond but sure can put a dent in their population by aggressively trapping and fishing. That will get really old some day, but at least currently it gives me a challenge.

I hope some how GSF do not get into my Pond dedicated to RES. If that pond establishes pure then raising RES in this tiny pond will be redundant and I can do something else with it. I have fished that pond three times and have caught nothing. That is actually a good sign for me (a better sign would have been to caught some RES). Had there been any level of GSF population with the small jig I was using I would have caught something.

Fingers crossed. grin
Posted By: esshup Re: Some more RES - 10/20/17 02:53 PM
I agree with the nuking it part. They will out compete RES and YP.
Posted By: snrub Re: Some more RES - 10/20/17 03:34 PM
I don't mind getting the hybrids. In fact I kind of like that. But either I am not getting the RES fingerling production or I am not getting them in traps like the GSF (which is possible).

I need to seine it but all my grandsons have grown up and moved away. No slave labor to help me and Carolynn has no intention of setting foot in a muddy slimy pond.
Posted By: snrub 1/20th acre forage pond - 11/01/17 02:47 AM
Been trapping fingerlings out of this pond the last couple weeks. Been getting lots and lots of GSF. mad Looks like maybe next year might just be the time to pump it down, seine it and start over fresh. Was hardly catching any RES in the minnow traps.

Till yesterday. GSF go into the traps for feed much, much more readily. I get the feeling the RES go in more by accident than on purpose, though I do not know that for sure.

It has gotten cold and my propensity to check the traps has lessened. In fact I removed all of them today. But when I run the traps yesterday I had not checked them for two days (usually check them multiple times each day). The standard opening traps had a number of the usual 1-1.5" GSF. But lo and behold when I checked the trap with an expanded size opening, all the GSF had likely exited once the feed was gone (the trap having been there two days since baited) but the 2-2.5" RES fingerlings pictured below were there. So I did get RES recruitment in this pond. Just hard to tell how much without seining it.

I have noticed this in the past, that when I leave the traps sit longer, I tend to get more RES in them. I find that interesting. If I am trapping to try and get the GSF out, I bait and check 15 minutes to a half hour later and do it often. The GSF are chow hounds. They go right after the feed, and if the feed is gone are pretty good at finding their way out of the trap. It seems like it takes a lot longer to get any RES fingerlings in the trap.


Description: RES fingerlings in a minnow trap with expanded size opening
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Posted By: Bill Cody Re: 1/20th acre forage pond - 11/02/17 12:53 AM
It is normal for GSF when uncontrolled to pretty quickly become overabundant and crowd out many other species including large invertebrates crayfish.. They are an aggressive fish with a large mouth and big appetite.
Posted By: snrub Re: 1/20th acre forage pond - 11/11/17 03:43 AM
I was starting to believe I had more GSF in this tiny 1/20th acre pond than RES. I had caught a number of 6" GSF and removed them and have caught several dozen fingerling 1 1/2 inch GSF in the minnow traps. It is funny, I will catch nothing but GSF in the traps, then all of the sudden I will get mostly RES. Can't explain why that happens but the GSF seem to have a much greater propensity to go in the traps for the bait feed. I think the RES more tend to wander in accidentally.

At any rate I figured the GSF were pretty bad. So I decided to take another approach. Had forgotten about the cast net I have. Had not used it for a long time. Thought I would give it a try and lo and behold I got RES! I caught about twenty in five casts, all similar size. Pictures below.

So I think there are more RES in the pond than I imagined (or less GSF). I have just been getting the GSF because they are more aggressive to bite a hook or go into a trap for food.

I think I will start casting the net each day about five times and move all the fingerling RES I get to my main pond. Will leave the breeder size in this pond. Funny thing is, I never got a single GSF with the cast net. Either they are quick to avoid it, or I have more RES than I imagined.


Description: RES caught in cast net
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Description: Close up of RES fingerling
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Description: Best single cast
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Posted By: snrub Re: 1/20th acre forage pond - 11/13/17 12:25 AM
Caught some more RES fingerlings with the cast net tonight. Four casts netted 41 2-2.5" RES, one GSF and a hand full of GS. The GS and RES got transferred to my main pond.


Description: First cast of the cast net in this forage pond
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Description: close up of some of the RES fingerlings
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Posted By: Bill D. Re: 1/20th acre forage pond - 11/13/17 01:20 AM
Thanks for posting the pics John! I may not reply to this and your other thread on fishing that often but I am definitely following along. Good stuff!
Posted By: snrub Looky what I caught in the cast net - 11/22/17 04:41 AM
Decided to throw the cast net in some of the deepest water of this 1/20th acre pond. Look what I caught. I put it right back in the pond to make more babies. That is one of my RES brood stock.


Description: 9.5" RES caught in cast net
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Posted By: Bocomo Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 11/22/17 04:45 AM
Nice fish!

Lusk says RES will cold stress so it's good you're doing the migration before it gets much colder.
Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 11/22/17 05:10 AM
Hadn't heard that but I can believe it. These 3" RES seem a lot more lethargic at current water temperatures (50-55) than the same size BG.

A week or so ago I dumped a batch of them in my main pond. Thought they were going to die as they rolled over and floated around. From then on I was much more careful about tempering them to the new water. In the case of my forage pond and main pond, they are 30 feet from each other. I figured temperature and water would be close enough no problem. Big problem. I suspect there is a pH difference as the forage pond is nearly entirely lined with limestone rock.

So from that point forward I was much more careful about tempering the water in the bucket to the new pond water and had no more problems.

But I can tell the RES swim away a lot more lethargically than what BG would. They are already cold.
Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 12/07/17 02:46 AM
This small 1/20th acre pond takes a new direction today.

The only fish stocked have been RES, FHM and GS. Somewhere along the line GSF got into the pond and I have been managing them by removal, both hook and line (for the ones that make it to larger size) and minnow traps.

I was afraid the GSF had gotten the upper hand and were on the verge of taking over. I was ready to throw in the towel next year, pump it down, seine it, and nuke it. I had removed ten or twelve 5-6" GSF and had been trapping lots of GSF fingerlings and only a few RES. But then I got out the cast net and removed over 400 3" nominal RES fingerlings over a couple weeks and was still getting quite a few with the net when I quit. And rarely a GSF in the cast net.

So I learned something. Minnow traps and fishing are not reliable ways to evaluate a RES vs GSF population, because the GSF are much more aggressive toward hook and line and are much more likely to go into a minnow trap for fish food. The reality turned out to be I had lots of RES in the pond and a much smaller population of GSF and have been able to reduce the GSF population down to the point I can no longer catch them by line and am only getting the occasional one in the minnow trap.

So change of plans. No nuking the pond next summer.

Instead I put 10 6"-9" SMB in this small pond. This is the first time this pond has had an apex predator.

Where will I go from here with this tiny pond? Not sure. Originally its purpose was to raise FHM and RES fingerlings to supplement RES stocking in my main pond. Once I introduced the GS, between the RES and GS the FHM pretty well went by the wayside. Now I have lots of GS and rarely catch a FHM. I have managed to put several hundred RES fingerlings from this pond into both my main pond and also more recently my RES only pond.

But now with the one acre RES only pond, I should in the future have all the RES fingerlings I need from it. So raising RES fingerlings in this tiny pond would be redundant.

So I am not sure what direction I will head with it. I may fish the SMB out after they get enough size to avoid predation in my main pond and put them there. Or I might just leave the SMB in this tiny pond and see how they perform. They have enough GS in this pond to almost walk on. At least for the first 6 months or maybe a year they should be well fed. Maybe I will see if I can get some SMB recruitment in this pond. The pond is almost entirely lined with crushed rock so maybe they would find suitable spawning sites.

Don't know. No specific goals yet. Think I will just observe for a while and see what shakes out. I know "no goals" is kind of anathema to this forum. But maybe specifically "no goal" is a goal in this case??? grin Whatever the case, I think I will have some more fun with this 1/20th acre pond.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 12/07/17 04:54 PM
snrub - very good information and observations about the activity in your small 1/20 ac forage pond. Thanks for the informative update. It is good fish management info.
Posted By: ewest Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 12/07/17 07:37 PM

Thanks for the report.

No Goals is an entirely valid option. When most of us say goals it really means "what do you want". If what one wants is no goals "free range fish" then that is good.

A couple thoughts. Crawfish go well with SMB and so do smaller forage fish (smaller than adult GS). Lots of GS may mean no/little SMB reproduction/recruitment as they repress spawning and eat eggs and fry.

Small ponds like that offer lots of options. What about a few adult YP ?
Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 03/18/18 02:23 AM
Wondered if the RES made it through the winter ok so threw the cast net about eight throws. Came up with about two dozen 3" RES and one that was about 5". Moved them to my sediment pond as I figure I still need to keep the biomass down in this pond to let the remaining fish room to grow.

Also caught some golden shiners in the cast net. There seems to be a big population of them as they really hit the feed pellets aggressively. That will make good food for the ten 6-9" SMB I put in there last December.

Caught three 5-6" GSF by hook and line. Hope I am getting them thinned out. Also caught one 6" GS. Fat bugger. Caught a few GSF/RES hybrids also. No pure RES but I suspect they are still pretty sluggish in the cold water. 50 degree water temp the other day when I measured.

I mostly wanted to get a feel for how this tiny pond fared through the winter. Looks like it may have done ok.


Description: couple of the 3" (nominal) RES from this pond caught with the cast net
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Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 03/23/18 12:51 AM
My very first SMB caught in my life. (My wife did catch a really nice one up at TJ's though). Was fishing for GSF trying to remove them in this pond before they had a chance to spawn this spring. Did catch and remove 3. Was bumping my lure along the bottom to see if the RES were active with no luck. Then this hit my jig baited with a bit of Gulp Alive worm on it.

Just a shade over 9". I stocked ten of these in the 6-9" range last December in this 1/20th acre pond. Nice to know at least one is still in there and looking good.


Description: One of the SMB I stocked last December
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Posted By: teehjaeh57 Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 03/23/18 05:23 PM
Not bad John - will absolutely benefit from GSH spawn this Summer and should beef up considerably. Pretty good shape coming out of Winter - when that gape increases it will grow fast.
Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 03/26/18 02:52 AM
Fishing in this 1/20th acre pond to remove unwanted GSF and hybrids to reduce biomass and caught this nice 10+" RES male (I think). One of my brood stock for the pond to raise the RES fingerlings. It went back in to make more babies.

Also been throwing the cast net to take out some more of the RES fingerlings and also a huge crop of GS. Only caught a few RES fingerlings but by throwing some feed out before throwing the net got around 50 4-5" nominal GS in about fifteen minutes. Transferred all these to my sediment pond. The sediment pond has bad FA and no GS stocked till now. This forage pond has lots of GS and no FA. So I am stocking the 1/10th acre sediment pond to see if the GS will take hold and help with the FA there. Hopefully will be a win-win. Reducing biomass in the forage pond to make room for the RES and SMB to grow (these GS are too big for the 6-9" SMB to eat) and if they will spawn in the sediment pond maybe eat some FA and provide forage for the 100 4-6" LMB I put in there last December.

Second picture is of my cast net repair crew fixing the tears I got throwing the net in an area with stuff it hung up on. Bless her heart!


Description: 10" plus RES. Fat and sassy. Did not weigh but this fish had some girth to it.
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Description: Carolynn fixing my damaged cast net
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That is a good looking fish! I really need to upgrade to a larger cast net. I throw a 6 footer which is easy to throw but apparently misses a lot of fish. I discovered this last weekend when trying to clean out the fish in puddle left from my pond draining. I threw the next 10 times without a single fish then finally started throwing in a pattern to "herd" them to one corner. Even after all that, the hydrated lime application turned up a few that I missed.
Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 03/26/18 09:24 PM
My experience with a cast net is that they work well only when you have fish concentrated. Either by knowing where a school is or using it in a confined area where there is already a concentration of fish.

Fish are pretty thick in this 1/20th acre forage pond. Still, I have to feed the GS to get them grouped up to get very many per throw. Even then at times I will get a lot in one throw then maybe just a few in the next.

When casting for RES fingerlings, I found that waiting till almost dark (last fall) the fish would be coming up into shallow water to feed and I could get acceptable numbers per throw. In mid day casting to the same area I would get very few or none. I also found that if the water was cold and the fish sluggish it helped. In hot weather when the fish are very active, I think a lot of them can flee beneath the weights before they hit the bottom. Fish are quick. If a person is really into cast nets, you want to use the biggest mesh that will work for the size of fish you are targeting. The reason is, for a given amount of lead weight, a coarser mesh will sink faster than a fine mesh. Too fine of mesh with a too small diameter net will mean the net sinks too slowly and fish will swim out from under the weights before they hit the bottom.

So just like fishing with a hook, bait and line, knowing where the fish are, casting appropriately, and having the right size/mesh/weight ratio are all keys to success, in my opinion. I am not always successful. But I have found a few specific instances where it works pretty good.

Stay away from artificial structure. It plays havoc on a cast net. smirk And my net repair crew does not do outside work and is high maintenance grin .
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 03/26/18 10:41 PM
Nice looking RES John!
Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 03/27/18 01:15 AM
Thanks! I liked catching it. I have mixed feelings about catching these larger fish in this pond. On one hand I like to disturb them as little as possible because they are my breeding stock. On the other hand, I like to see how big they are getting and also like to know they are still there. smile

Here are some pictures of the GS I have been getting in the cast net. There are also lots of smaller ones but they go right through the net mesh and escape. I have two or three every cast that get gill hooked in the net and likely will not survive. They are just the right size to get their head and gill cover through but too big for the rest of the body to pass through. But if I loose a few it is no big deal.

Last couple of pictures are of RES fingerlings from last years spawn. I got maybe a half dozen of those today in about 20 minutes and probably 50-60 GS. No GSF or hybrids which is great. Have not got a single cast net with any GSF or hybrid this spring, although I have caught a half dozen larger ones by hook and line. Hopefully I am getting them thinned out enough so they will be of minor consequence.

All of the fish pictured went into my sediment pond to stock it.

The last RES measured 3.25 inch long.


Description: Golden shiners from my forage pond in the cast net
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Description: A good amount for a single throw. What I get when I feed them to concentrate.
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Description: larger one
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Description: Biggest one I caught
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Description: About the smallest size I get. Anything smaller goes through the mesh and escapes
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Description: Another cast catch
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Description: RES fingerling. If I had to guess I would call this one a female but I really don't know.
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Description: RES fingerling. I would guess male on this one, but again I really do not know.
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Posted By: SetterGuy Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 03/27/18 01:28 PM
Hmm, maybe I should try a cast net. Throw it when you are feeding? I would not know where else to throw it in a one AC pond. I'd like to clean out the HBG fry that are probably GSF.
I haven't seen many of my RES, but I know they are there. We catch one every now and then fishing for YP.
I'm not sure throwing the net in when I'm feeding is a good thing. I want them to continue to come to the feeder. Maybe just a toss or two sporadically.

Your fish sure look nice and healthy. Great info.
Posted By: ColdSpringsFarm Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/27/18 01:56 PM
Here's an idea that I learned from my grandfather many years ago. I haven't seen this concept used very much since then. Its basically a fish hoist as illustrated below. The top ring is a floating ring that you throw the fish feed into. about 1 foot below is a slightly larger non floating ring with net attached. You train the fish to get comfortable feeding from the top ring then you can quickly lift the net and catch them from the bottom up. As 10 year old it amazed me that you could catch enough fish to feed 4 or 5 people in the span of 5 minutes. It was also not terribly disruptive, the fish resumed feeding shortly after.

It works best in an area like the corner of a dam or dock where you can walk a perimeter to rotate the fish load to the bank. The other tip is to have the center point a metal pipe with the Y being loosely fitted into the pipe so that it will rotate.



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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/27/18 06:01 PM
That looks like a great idea. It would certainly be less disruptive.

As far as setterguy's concerns, I think they might be valid for some species of fish. But the GS seem to be dumb as stumps. I can wait a few minutes, throw another hand full of feed out and they are back.

I think it is important to point out that this is in a 1/20th acre pond. The fish likely are very hungry and can't run far away. I would not expect as much success in my 3 acre pond.

Something I think would work is throw it at night when the HBG are sleeping near shore. I have not tried it with the cast net, but I actually picked up a small BG in my hand one late night in less than 6 inches of water.
Posted By: ColdSpringsFarm Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/27/18 07:59 PM
Originally Posted By: snrub
Something I think would work is throw it at night when the HBG are sleeping near shore. I have not tried it with the cast net, but I actually picked up a small BG in my hand one late night in less than 6 inches of water.


Funny you mention that. I have been checking on my new CNBG fingerlings night and day. Two nights ago I went with a flashlight to see if I could spot any of them. I was surprised at how many were sitting motionless on the bottom in less than 6" of water. I was also able to grab one by hand. Is this "sleeping" behavior typical for fingerlings? Seems like an easy way to get picked off by racoons or other predators.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/28/18 02:20 AM
Yepp. Very common. At least in my pond. Small ones close to shore in shallow water with larger ones ranging out as you get deeper.

Kind of explains why raccoons hang around ponds at night to catch fish and why large CC, being more nocturnal feeders, can do a number on the BG population. Also likely why you can find GBH fishing on moonlit nights.
Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/28/18 03:06 AM
I have seen that for years with the small BG next to the bank after dark. We used to net some of them for trotline bait years ago by walking slowly along the lake banks with light and net. Mostly under 4 inches. I have never caught a BG at night by hook and line. They seem to be inactive at night.

I have found that large CC become very easy pickings for otters during winter when the CC lie on the bottom and barely move. I probably lost about 175 to 200 pounds of CC from my ponds this winter due to otters. Seems zero CC left in the ponds.

Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 05/20/18 03:00 AM
Been catching some GS out of this forage pond to stock my sediment pond and main pond in addition to reducing the fish load in this pond. Fish are thick enough to almost walk on and I fear a fish kill later this summer unless I get some of them harvested and out of here.

While casting for GS I have been getting a couple of 3-4" RES per cast also. Lo and behold I also got three big ones in the cast net pictured below. All in the 7.5-9" range. Normally I would put these large RES back in to raise more RES fingerlings. But considering I removed several hundred 3" nominal RES last fall and am still getting 3-4" fish in the cast net, I think I have plenty of fingerlings in there even without the large breeders. So these three went to the sediment pond to raise some RES fingerlings there. These were caught about a week ago and just got around to posting the pics.

On another sadder note, I found two dead 9-10" SMB (out of 10 originally stocked) in this pond floating around the edge. I had put the aeration on timer but don't know if this had anything to do with it. Put this pond back on 24-7 aeration because it has such a heavy fish load. That was a couple days ago and no more dead SMB since. Fingers crossed. Fish were too decomposed and partially eaten to determine death.


Description: Two large RES along with some smaller ones and a number of GS in the cast net
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Description: Another of the larger RES caught in the cast net the next throw
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I envy you guys. I've stocked RES several times in each pond. I only remember ever catching but one.
Posted By: snrub Re: Looky what I caught in the cast net - 05/20/18 04:55 PM
Dave in my main 3 acre pond out of hundreds and hundreds of BG I catch each year I am lucky if I catch 2 or 3 RES. I have been putting fingerling RES out of this forage pond in the main pond trying to bring their numbers up in relation to the BG population. They are tough to catch when in with a mixed population of fish.

Now in this forage pond where RES are the only sunfish (except for a few GSF that I remove when I catch) I can catch them. It still is not particularly easy compared to BG, but where they are the only fish it helps.

My theory is that in a pond full of hungry BG the more persnickety RES simply do not get to the bait in time. Or when they do they are a lot more picky about taking it. In this pond when I catch a RES by hook and line it is usually a small tug, another small tug (kind of like a tiny fish is messing with the bait) then once they have "tasted" it they take the bate. Seems like for me and the bait I use at least it is rarely just a full on strike like a BG or GSF would do.

In my RES dedicated one acre pond I should have several hundred catch-able size RES by now and stocked 90 SMB. Fishing to sample for the RES I caught two SMB. Go figure.
Posted By: snrub First cast of the cast net tonight - 05/21/18 02:53 AM
This was the contents of the first cast of the cast net tonight. 9 RES and 11 or 12 GS. No GSF (yea!) Biggest RES in the picture about 4-5".

Second cast I got about a 6" RES. All came out of this pond and went into the sediment pond.

After a few casts the fish kind of get spooked and I have trouble getting decent numbers so I quit. I throw a hand full of feed out in an area and wait a couple minutes for them to get into a feeding frenzy before casting the net.


Description: Contents of cast net dumped out. Crazy RES jumped all over the place and spread out. I normally dump directly into a 5 gallon bucket with water.
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Description: The larger RES in the catch
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Description: Some of the GS
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John, I admit to not really knowing how to fish for them. If a fish won't hit a Stubby Steve, I'll never know they are there.
Posted By: Dam'dWaters Re: First cast of the cast net tonight - 05/21/18 02:19 PM
John,

I trust you've probably addressed this before in your thread, but is there anything you'd have done differently with your smaller ponds now that you've had them for some time. I'm thinking about building a couple small ponds for forage, breeding, grow-out, "pets", etc. I was wondering how small you think you could have gone? Would you change the shape? Would you change the medium (gravel vs mud)?
Posted By: snrub Re: First cast of the cast net tonight - 05/21/18 03:20 PM
I like what I have pretty well for what I do with them. I think a person needs to know what he expects of them to design them right. For example if you plan on seining them make sure the pond is the correct shape/depth/bottom type.

I think my 1/20th acre pond is as small as I would want to go and try to maintain a fish population. Smaller would be ok for raising seasonal forage or something like that but the smaller the pond the more intense any changes that can happen will happen. For example water exchanges is something to be very mindful of in the design. This 1/20th acre forage pond I lucked out and got about the right amount of runoff and most of it is from my graveled farmstead watershed. The amount of watershed (assuming a watershed pond and not one filled by well or water table) is important because too little and your pond gets low. In a small pond that low level can be even more critical than a larger BOW. Also too little watershed means not very much flow through. This small pond is chocked full of mostly RES and GS. I feed them and that means fertility buildup. With little flow through that fertility builds and builds and becomes a problem. With occasional flow through with adequate watershed runoff this excess nutrients gets flushed out. That is very helpful in maintaining quality water.

Now the other side of the coin. Too much water and flow through. This can be very challenging and stressful on the fish in the pond. This describes my 1/10th acre sediment pond. Being a sediment pond to protect my main pond from sediment runoff, its purpose in life is to take large water flows, slow them down, and give the water a chance to give up anything unwanted from getting into the main pond. So by its nature it can have huge water amounts pass through the pond. This can make the water quality go from anything from perfect to mats of FA because of excess nutrients (in periods of low rainfall and therefore low flow through) to nearly all new, turbid water loaded with sediment. The point is, a pond with huge fluctuations of water flow through can be very challenging for the fish living there. They can go from nice water to abrupt temperature change water to nasty water in a matter of hours or even minutes. This is tough on fish.

My 1/20th acre forage pond and 1/10th acre sediment ponds are only about 50' apart. Yet the nature of the two ponds differences are like night and day. They both raise lots of fish but the sediment pond can have wild swings and even some partial or in one case nearly total fish kill (because of my dumb management mistake of the watershed).

In my three acre pond a big rain event might create a water exchange event on the order of 10 or 20% of the pond water over a day or two. Probably similar for my 1/20th acre forage pond although I have never actually tried to figure either. By contrast my 1/10th acre sediment pond could have several 100% water exchanges in a single 24 hour period in a big rain event. So one very critical aspect of a small pond (in my opinion) is managing the water shed so it is the best size for the pond and the anticipated runoff amounts for your particular area. The smaller the pond, the more critical. I have what I call the Pre-sediment pond just ahead of my sediment pond. I don't really even call it a pond any more as I have connected it to the sediment pond (via a 6" underground pipe) but it used to be completely separate. It is about 20 feet wide and 50 feet long and catches 100% of the water that the sediment pond sees (water from a field terrace flows through it before it goes into the sediment pond). It is a size I can clean the sediment out with my backhoe. I had given up trying to manage a pond this size with the flow through it gets. Parts of the year it will raise tremendous amounts of fingerling fish. But one big rain and the water flow through and number of exchanges and any fish 6" or so in size likely will be laying dead on the bank the next day. Just too much extreme water quality changes too abruptly for the fish to handle.

So if there is one thing I have learned from my small ponds it is that water exchanges and the rapidity of the exchanges can make a world of difference on how the pond performs. If you are making a small pond keep this in mind. If it is going to have valuable fish that you expect to maintain a population you might want to arrange diversion terraces to keep excess water out. If it is just for raising seasonal forage fish, it might not make much difference.

The other thing I would say is if you intend to push the pond by feeding expect it to get to carrying capacity quickly. This means the potential for a fish kill. Aeration becomes even more important in a small pond than big pond if you push the pond to its limits. If you let it progress naturally without extra feed, maybe not as much of a problem. But small ponds things can change rapidly in them. This is both an advantage and a disadvantage. This means that things can go from good to bad quickly. But it also means you can make management changes relatively easy and quickly.

That is probably enough for now. Probably put everyone attempting to read this to sleep.

I see no disadvantage (in my acid soils) to the limestone rock lining. In a small pond it is practical to do it.
Posted By: snrub Re: First cast of the cast net tonight - 06/18/18 04:10 AM
Did a few throws of the cast net tonight mostly to get a few GS for my wifes little concrete pond and to show her some fingerling RES. Lo and behold this nice RES was caught in the first cast. Just a hair over 10". Not bad for a 1/20th acre pond.

I moved this one to my main pond. There are still lots of fingerling RES in this pond so trying to get some of the biomass out so the ones left can grow. This has been one of my breeders to produce fingerlings but time for him to go to the main pond and make some babies. No monster but a nice, plump, good looking fish.


Description: 10"+ male RES out of my 1/20th acre forage pond
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Posted By: snrub Re: First cast of the cast net tonight - 08/15/18 03:16 AM
Been removing lots of unwanted GSF from this pond. Fish pictured in bucket were caught tonight by hook and line. Caught about that many last night also. Have been trapping the smaller GSF and I think the numbers are getting thinned out because getting just a few in the traps where I was getting lots. I think I have them back down to manageable levels again. Will fish it a time or two more to make sure. No way of getting all of them, just have to keep their numbers in check. Notice the fat bellies on the GSF. Pellet hogs. My CC and a pet LMB in my main pond sure like the GSF with their tails cut off fed to them one at a time. Fun to watch them hammer the GSF.

Have been adding some additional SMB fingerlings to this pond and the larger ones I added last fall should start to make a difference on controlling the smaller GSF. Saw a big splash near shore tonight and a GSH leapt out of the water nearly on the bank so I think the SMB are starting to put the hurt on some of the smaller fish.

The other pictures are of overachiever RES fingerlings. About 7pm all of the sudden started catching small RES. No big ones, just the fingerlings. Caught all 6 fingerlings within 15 minutes.


Description: Bucket of GSF removed from forage pond to help control their numbers and competition with my SMB fingerlings I have been adding.
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Description: RES fingerling 1
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Description: RES fingerling 2
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Description: RES fingerling 3
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Description: RES fingerling 4
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Description: RES fingerling 5
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Description: And slightly larger RES fingerling 6
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Posted By: Clay N' Pray Re: First cast of the cast net tonight - 08/15/18 09:34 AM
My clover leaf perch trap arrived yesterday.
I plan to set it Friday after work in the shallows.
Hopefully it's full of 3" GSF by Saturday afternoon.
My minnow trap has been less than productive, so high hopes for the cloverleaf.
A cast net will catch fish of all sizes and I have no help, so traps are my best bet.
Posted By: snrub Re: First cast of the cast net tonight - 08/15/18 04:15 PM
Catching fish by various means is interesting to say the least.

If I put a minnow trap out with feed in it, a person might think I only have GSF in this pond or sometimes GSH. It is kind of funny, if I catch GSF I sometimes catch quite a few at a time. Like they travel in schools and I either get a bunch or none (occasionally I will get one or two at a time but usually a bunch or none). I'll get a few RES but not a lot.

Yet if I throw a cast net around dark I will get mostly RES fingerlings and rarely a GSF fingerling.

My conclusion is the GSF are chow hounds and go into the trap and the RES mostly stumble in by accident (though when I do get RES in the traps their bellies are usually extended full of pellet feed so they are eating it).

If I throw a minnow trap in my main pond I will get bunches of BG fingerlings (there are no BG in this forage pond so never get any).

Will be interesting to see how your cloverleaf trap works. I have another style of trap I rarely use any more. Will try to remember to take a picture. It is for larger than fingerling fish. I have caught BH and GSF with it in the past.
Posted By: snrub minnow trap fish - 08/30/18 01:31 PM
Here is the content of two minnow traps. Can you pick out the RES from the GSF? Look at the center of the bucket then just to the left. There is a GSF about the size of the two RES laying beside it. Also some smaller GSF around the edge and at the bottom. That is what I have been doing for the last couple months. The GSF get their tails cut off and tossed off the dock to waiting LMB and CC. The RES get moved to one of 4 other ponds.

At the beginning of the trapping most of the fish were GSF and only a few RES in the trap. Sometimes a get quite a few GSH which are also in this forage pond. But as you can see by the picture my trapping over time has removed many of the GSF and in the bucket are mostly RES fingerlings now.

I've also removed a lot of the larger GSF by hook and line. Will never get rid of all of them (without nuking the pond and starting over) but by taking the time to manage what I have it keeps the GSF numbers down to a manageable level. And my CC and LMB that hang around the main pond dock love it when I toss the tailless GSF to them. They act like a kid going after candy.

Last fall I put 10 SMB in this pond Two died that I know of and I think maybe more) and this summer I have put probably 20 more fingerling SMB in. These should start putting the hurt to any new GSF fry to help me with my trapping and fishing removal. You will notice in the bucket along with the one GSF that is about the same size as the RES some smaller GSF around the edge of the bucket. That is what I have been getting mostly lately in the GSF is the smaller ones from a later spawn.

As those SMB get to 10" or so I will fish them out and move them to my main pond for a bonus fish to finish growing up there. I have tried to be careful to remove lots more fish than I put back in with the SMB additions. And the pond is chock full of 1-2" GSH so the SMB should have plenty to eat for a while. I hope to remove several of the SMB right before winter so the pond has less bio load over the winter.

Edit: some of the smaller fish could be RES (but I do not think so) but I never trust my ability to properly ID those smaller fish. I only transfer to another pond the ones large enough that I can positively ID as RES. Sometimes I get hybrids RESxGSF (but not many lately) and those I will transfer to my main pond or sediment pond (because I like the hybrids) but I never take anything that I might suspect hybrid to my RES pond. And transfers to my RES only pond get scrutinized the most.


Description: RES and GSF along with one GSH out of two minnow traps from forage pond
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Posted By: snrub Re: minnow trap fish - 09/07/18 05:09 AM
Caught this 13" SMB from this forage pond today. I stocked ten 6-9" SMB last December. Two that I know of died because I removed them floating. That happened a couple days after catching two fish but also when I reduced the aeration run time. Not sure which done them in but I went back to a 24-7 aeration run time after it happened.

But I had not caught any more since those two earlier this spring. So I was not sure I even had any of the original SMB left. I have put around 50 4-6" SMB fingerlings in this pond over the last couple months transferred from my RES/SMB pond to grow them out to a size capable of avoiding predation in my main pond. But now that I know there was at least one 13" SMB in this pond the fingerlings might have been as well off where they came from eek Oh well.

Catching any of the larger SMB (if there are any more) is tough because the pond is thick with 3-4" GSH so getting them to bite on an artificial lure is a challenge. I have fished this pond quite a lot to remove GSF and in fact was what I was attempting to do when I caught the one pictured below. Nice fish for a December stocking. I hope there are more. I had not noticed any SMB recruitment in this pond like I have had in my RES/SMB pond, thus the reason I was putting the fingerlings in here to grow them out. There is plenty of live food for them and I feed pellets too.

Edit: the tape is up above the fish a little and makes it look to be only 12" long but I did measure it and it is a full 13+".

PBF get together in SE Kansas September 22, 2018


Description: 13" SMB stocked last December
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Description: This size SMB and a little larger are what I have been putting in this pond to grow them out to large enough to go into my main pond
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Posted By: ewest Re: minnow trap fish - 09/07/18 03:41 PM
Nice , well conditioned adult SMB.
Posted By: snrub Re: minnow trap fish - 09/07/18 04:21 PM
Thanks.

It got transferred to my main pond. I figure a 1/20th acre pond can't stand too many of those that size and I had tremendous BG multiple spawns this year and need the predators to help clean the small ones up.

I'm very careful to try and remove multiple times biomass in any pond I am adding fish. Don't want a fish kill from over crowding.

Reminds me, I need to go fillet about 30 HBG and BG in the holding pen in the main pond.
Posted By: snrub Re: minnow trap fish - 11/03/18 08:23 PM
I continue to move biomass out of this pond while adding some small 3.5-4" SMB to grow out this winter through next spring/summer. Added 18 3.5-4" SMB.

Caught a number of RES via the cast net to transfer, some to my sediment pond and some to the main pond.

Moved a few GSH also but the numbers that will stay in the cast net have been reduced significantly as I catch fewer and fewer. I still see lots of 3" (that slip through the cast net mesh) and smaller but the SMB are also making an impact on their numbers.

Also caught one nice 8" SMB. Don't know what I was thinking but I put it back. It should have went to the main pond. That is the size, 8-10", that I am growing the 4" SMB to so they are large enough to escape predation in my main pond.


Description: 8" SMB that should have went to my main pond caught with the case net
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Description: Have raised and transferred many RES this size from this pond to my other ponds. I did catch a few 2.5"-3" RES indicating a later spawn but most are above 3"
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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/19/20 08:01 PM
I want to put a link to Nedoc's thread on raising HSB because I have a lot of discussion there about using this forage pond for HSB raising. With any luck will be starting notations here about the progress once I get the fish in the pond.

Chronicles of stocking Hybrid Striped Bass
http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=518147#Post518147
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/23/20 11:14 PM
I still have FHM's

After trying the cast net a few throws for a couple days and nothing I was beginning to worry they were all killed out. But a couple of minnow traps baited with feed and in about ten minutes had a dozen or so small FHM in each. I think the cast net mesh was just too big or I was not throwing it in the right place.

Put some in this clean pond last fall. They reproduced and I took numerous pounds out and placed in my RES/SMB pond last fall.

This pond is going to be dedicated to growing out some HSB latter this summer. Will put some RES in soon to control snails and get some RES fingerling reproduction for next year.

That is the plan anyway.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 03/24/20 12:32 AM
I'm glad to hear the 1st piece of your puzzle has came together.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 04/02/20 04:51 PM
Got the RES from the fish truck today. They looked pretty good.

I ended up getting 100. I think maybe 40 is a better number for this pond as suggested by jpsdad, but my thinking is I will let these grow a while and when they get up to 4-5", maybe about the time I will be getting the HSB, use a cast net and remove all I can down towards the 40-50 level to leave in the pond.

I have had pretty good luck catching RES fingerlings out of this pond in the past by doing it right about sundown near the shore. It appears they come up to shallow water to eat that time of day.

There sure are enough snails for them to eat. Snails are thick in this pond with lots of eggs too so going to be lots of baby snails for the growing RES to eat, at least for a while.
Posted By: jpsdad Re: Building new forage mini pond - 04/02/20 05:42 PM
That sounds like a good plan John. I am looking forward to reading your progress. The RES should grow fast, how long are they now?
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 04/02/20 06:24 PM
I would guess inch and a half to two inches. Most 1.5". They were nice looking fingerlings.

I may have a few moralities. I did not do as good of job of acclimating them as I should have. A couple swam out of the bag ok after mixing in some pond water and waiting for a while so I thought they were ready. Dumped them out and a bunch (10%) sunk to the bottom in 6" of water. I picked them up and moved some around and they swam off and acted better. But I think I rushed it too much.

Will go out in a little while and check for floaters.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/06/20 11:17 AM
Did a couple cast net throws and the RES are about 2 1/2 to 3 inches now. FHM are thick and aggressively pushing pellets around the pond and consuming them.

Called Keo Fish Farm and they said I could get HSB fry about any time. They have had a bit of a late season so the spawn is a little behind. Looking at making a trip down to pick some up in about 10 days. He said they could put a pound in a shipping box and depending on the size of the fish that would amount to 400-500 fish.

Reminds me I need to get starter feed ordered.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/12/20 01:38 PM
Picking up a pound of HSB fry from KEO Fish Farms at 8am Monday morning. Should be back at the pond around 4pm to put them into this forage pond to grow out. A pound of these fry should be between 400 and 500 fish, depending on what size he has at the moment. He said he would try to get me some of the larger size.

Thanks to NEDOC for showing me his cage raised HSB a couple years ago at his place and getting me excited to raise some.

NEDOC chronicles of stocking HSB thread

Got a couple of local PBF'ers that hopefully I can help stock their ponds with some if I get them raised up to size successfully. If most of them live I will have a way more than I need for my other ponds.
Posted By: Snakebite Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/12/20 07:48 PM
Originally Posted by snrub
Picking up a pound of HSB fry from KEO Fish Farms at 8am Monday morning. Should be back at the pond around 4pm to put them into this forage pond to grow out. A pound of these fry should be between 400 and 500 fish, depending on what size he has at the moment. He said he would try to get me some of the larger size.

Thanks to NEDOC for showing me his cage raised HSB a couple years ago at his place and getting me excited to raise some.

NEDOC chronicles of stocking HSB thread

Got a couple of local PBF'ers that hopefully I can help stock their ponds with some if I get them raised up to size successfully. If most of them live I will have a way more than I need for my other ponds.

Snrub pictures or it didn`t happen. Ha I would love to see the baby fry in the containers. Good luck tomorrow and be safe driving down.
Posted By: jpsdad Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/12/20 11:40 PM
This is exciting news John. Keep us posted.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 01:25 AM
Rolled in to Keo Fish Farm near Keo, Arkansas at 8am sharp this morning and left with two bags totaling 500 1.5" Hybrid Striped Bass. Got home before 4pm, tempered them and released them into this 1/20th acre forage pond. Had one mortality that I noticed when they were coming out of the bag. Brought 5 inside to a tiny aquarium to observe them. They went right after some food we gave them.

Pictures below.

Martha took my money and Mike helped get the fish ready (the two owners).

Here is an old article about Keo Fish Farm. https://www.farmprogress.com/livestock/keo-farm-specializes-fingerlings

The HSB are about the same size as the FHM adults in this pond. Mike said they likely would not eat much feed as long as they had FHM's but would readily take back to feed once the FHM's were consumed.

I don't seem to be able to rotate some of the pictures as needed. I can do it on my computer but it does not seem to affect the upload. You may have to tilt your head sideways on a couple pictures.

Anxious to see how they grow. The pond is chocked full of FHM's and 100 RES that are not about 3" are the only other fish in this 8' deep puddle.
[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]


Description: HSB fry in holding tank. They hold them without feed for several days before shipment to clean them out to prevent ammonia buildup during shipment.
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Description: collecting the fish
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Description: Adding O2 and charcoal to the bag of fish
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Description: Set them in a cooler and covered with a blanket. Mike said they would be good in the bags for up to 24 hours.
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Description: Was instructed to float the bags for 5 minutes to equalize temperature, open bag and immediately start putting pond water in the bag cup at a time.
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Description: In the water
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Description: about inch and a half long.
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Posted By: anthropic Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 02:01 AM
John, based on my experience you'll never regret adding hybrid stripers. Wonderful fish! If they jumped nobody would care about LMB.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 02:16 AM
Funny thing is, I'm really not much of an angler. Oh I fish quite a bit any more, mostly for BG, but only in my own ponds. I don't even own a fishing license and have never had a Kansas fishing license.

I mostly just like raising them and messing with the pond. But we do also eat quite a lot of fish that we catch.

The SMB are the jumpers. I really like them too.
Posted By: anthropic Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 03:56 AM
Originally Posted by snrub
Funny thing is, I'm really not much of an angler. Oh I fish quite a bit any more, mostly for BG, but only in my own ponds. I don't even own a fishing license and have never had a Kansas fishing license.

I mostly just like raising them and messing with the pond. But we do also eat quite a lot of fish that we catch.

The SMB are the jumpers. I really like them too.

Have you tried eating any HSB? I never have, but am wondering what they taste like. Reluctant to take out HSB from my place because I have relatively few and they fight like crazy.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 04:23 AM
Fillet leaving a thin layer of meat (the red meat) connected to the skin. HSB are not bad at all, and I can say the red meat gets more pronounced with size of fish. 1-3lb'ers are not bad.. bigger and it becomes more of an issue.

Of course you could repurpose the meat left on skin and likely use as feed back into the system.
Posted By: anthropic Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 04:38 AM
Originally Posted by Snipe
Fillet leaving a thin layer of meat (the red meat) connected to the skin. HSB are not bad at all, and I can say the red meat gets more pronounced with size of fish. 1-3lb'ers are not bad.. bigger and it becomes more of an issue.

Of course you could repurpose the meat left on skin and likely use as feed back into the system.

Thanks for the tip! I don't mind occasionally taking a smaller one out, though to be honest BG and even LMB are more my style. Rainbow trout and crappie top many lists, but I was raised on fried BG, love the slightly sweet taste.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 10:00 AM
Somebody must eat a lot of HSB. If you read that article on KEO and the number of fry they sell per year, many of those fry are sold to commercial fish farms raising them for food. Or at least that is the way I interpreted the article.

I had always heard they were supposed to be good eating. Thanks for the tip Snipe. Unless something bad happens to my new fingerlings, eating a bunch of them is likely in my future. Probably a bunch of 1-2 pounders because I will have a way lot more numbers than I need to stock the rest of my ponds.

I anticipate I will have to keep harvesting or will experience bass overload.

For those that missed it, pictures on the bottom of the previous page.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 11:45 AM
I sure did miss that Snrub. Those are pretty cool pictures. I hope these work out amazing for ya. When your ready to relocate them to your main pond I'm here to help ya. I helped my old man seine a small pond he used for growing catfish. We had a truck bed full of those suckers. Only had to go about 500 feet with them. That was a redneck good time lol.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 01:32 PM
I might take you up on that and you are one of the ones I figure would be the final home for some of these. Unless I have a high mortality rate some time this fall when they get 4-6" in length I am going to need to start removing some from this pond. I'll stock my other ponds with quite a few but will need to get the numbers down low enough in this tiny pond I think the remaining can over winter and let them get a little bigger into next year before their relocation. I know Heath on this forum would like some for his pond also and another local would like some. They are both not too far from me.

Plus I will get tired of buying the feed for that many fish after a while. eek
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 02:34 PM
Even if you don't don't have extra i'm more than willing to help out. I'm always down for a good time in the water.
Posted By: Snakebite Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/16/20 07:09 PM
Thanks John for the great pictures. Can`t wait to see the growth of these speed demons.
Posted By: snrub Update on HSB growth - 07/03/20 09:49 PM
The HSB stocked on 6-15-2020 and the one I caught today 18 days later in a cast net was 3.5". Started out average length 1.5"

Also caught a RES in the cast net to see how they are doing. . About 4.25" on this one stocked 4-20-2020 at about 2" long.

Things are progressing.

[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com] [Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]
[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]


Description: Hybrid Stripe bass 3.5" long
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Description: HSB when stocked 18 days ago
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Description: RES 4.25"
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Posted By: Snakebite Re: Update on HSB growth - 07/03/20 09:51 PM
That`s really good growth John. It`s amazes me to see the detail difference in a HSB 1.5" to a 3.5" fish.
Posted By: snrub Re: Update on HSB growth - 07/03/20 10:07 PM
Yes they are really growing on all the tiny FHM's in that pond. I was told bu Mike at Keo that they would not eat much feed as long as they had minnows to eat but would readily switch over to feed once the minnow population dwindled. I had yet to see one feeding on any of the feed I threw in so got curious and captured one with the cast net. Only sampled the one because the size they are right now the cast net is a perfect size to gill net them. Will go another couple weeks when they get bigger and less likely to kill them with the net and sample again. I was happy with the RES growth too.

I'm feeding daily and the FHM's are gobbling it up. So feeding the FHM to feed the HSB and RES.

I don't have the correct size feed. Optimal was out of #4 starter that I wanted but got 10# of #2 which is really small. But the FHM will eat it if the HSB don't. Also been feeding Optimal Jr and Aquamax MVP (mixing it together and hand feeding). The FHM peck at it till it softens and gets consumed or it soaks up and sinks and they eat it off the bottom. I think the FHM will keep reproducing babies till the HSB get big enough to eat the adults. My thinking is by then they will be big enough to eat the Optimal Jr so I should be able to keep them fed either with FHM or fish food.

So far so good.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Update on HSB growth - 07/04/20 05:37 AM
snrub, my HSB started showing up to Optimal jr at about 5-5.5".. No lack of forage just one day there they were.
Mine were about 2" when stocked the first part of June so I'd say your growth is better and I'll bet you pass me up soon!
Posted By: snrub Re: Update on HSB growth - 07/04/20 12:44 PM
The #2 starter feed I have is sinking so I can't even see what is eating it. But I am sure the FHM will clean it up and the HSB will get it from that source. I wish I had the #4 which is about the size of BB's and floats. I have had it before to feed the small BG around the edge of the main pond.

I only caught the one fish so it could have been the largest or the smallest. I will check in another week or two when they get a little bigger and the cast net will not kill them. By the time they are 5" I should be able to catch them by hook and line. I have actually caught FHM's on a small hook before so should be able to catch the HSB with the right rig. I think I got some tiny jig hooks for tying flys.

I was concerned stocking so many fish in my tiny 1/20th acre forage pond but from what I read they raise these things under commercial conditions at tremendous pounds of fish per acre. I do have aeration in this pond so that is a plus. I can up the air flow easily as they get bigger and more concentrated. Then as soon as they get big enough to escape predation I can start taking some out and putting in other ponds to give more room for the remaining ones.

We have been trying to fish and remove some CC and HBG from the main pond to give room for some more biomass anticipating putting some of these HSB in there.

Kind of exciting but spooky too, wondering just where I will screw up and kill some fish. eek
Posted By: RStringer Re: Update on HSB growth - 07/04/20 07:12 PM
Sounds like your plan is coming together very nice. It would be cool to see when they all start going crazy for the pellets.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/11/20 06:33 PM
From what I have been able to see from the surface the HSB just started hitting the pellets yesterday. When the FHM hit the pellets they just kind of mostly move the pellet around. But yesterday I could see the something bigger hitting it hard and it has to be the HSB.

Did single cast net throw to sample them and came up with three HSB and one RES.

[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com][Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]

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Posted By: ewest Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/13/20 03:29 PM
snrub --"some time this fall when they get 4-6" in length I am going to need to start removing some from this pond."

Looks like Fall size got here early. Well conditioned HSB !
Posted By: Snakebite Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/13/20 07:24 PM
Wow. The growth over the few weeks has been really amazing. I agree that you may be looking at stocking earlier than expected. On the feed note I have used the magic bullet food grinder on many occasions to get food to the right size, when the right sized food is hard to source.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/15/20 02:40 PM
Took out 34 of the HSB today at an average length of about 4.5". Caught them with a cast net.

Put a dozen in my main pond, a dozen in the old pond and ten in the RES/SMB pond.

They are not big enough to escape all predation except maybe in the RES/SMB pond, but I have this paranoia that I will screw up somehow in the forage pond, have a fish kill, and lose all of them. So I figure at least get a few out in other ponds and maybe some of them will survive, just in case I have a catastrophe in this forage pond. Hedging my bets a little so I don't end up with a big goose egg for the project.

Will likely do it again in a few weeks as they grow some more.

They scurried off in their new environments.

More of them are starting to hit pellets on the surface now.
Posted By: ewest Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/15/20 03:26 PM
Well done !

Any guess at weights ?

Hybrid Striped Bass (HSB) Standard Weight
6"=0.1 lb, 8"= 0.24 lb, 10" 0.49 lb, 12"= 0.87 lb, 14"= 1.41 lb, 16"= 2.15 lb
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/15/20 09:13 PM
Didn't even think to weigh them Eric!

Have to get out the wife's kitchen scales for that.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/18/20 11:34 PM
Caught another dozen HSB with the cast net and transferred them to the main pond. Most were 5" with one smaller one still at 4.5". 33 days from stocking. Starting to hit pellets a lot better and the FHM fry along the banks are getting fewer. Caught a couple 3-4" RES in the throws also and transferred them too.
Posted By: jpsdad Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/19/20 03:49 AM
That's awesome growth John. I can't help but think the difference is the FHM providing round the clock forage. Well Done!
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/21/20 07:43 AM
Thanks. I can't help but believe they will hit a stall once the FHM's are all eaten. I'm just hand feeding and only once a day.

Right now the HSB are not big enough to eat the adult FHM's. Once they get to that size I think it will be all over with for the FHM's as there is very little cover in this pond. Wonder what size the HSB would need to be to eat an adult FHM?

Transferred another dozen to the main pond. Did not measure any but it sure looked like one of them might have been 6" as it was a little bigger than the others. That makes 58 total removed from this pond so far.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 07/25/20 02:07 AM
Interesting observation of the HSB fry the last couple days. They are starting to hunt in packs I presume. About 7pm tonight as we walked out to feed them saw up to three different schools at one time thrashing the water surface in about a 3' diameter boil. I presume they were attacking a school of FHM fry. I had noticed this once in a while before but tonight it was very pronounced and happening in multiple places in the tiny pond at the same time. Would last for maybe ten seconds then start up nearby again later.

Threw out some feed and they started hitting the pellets more one at a time.

Be up to the daughter to feed them next week. Will be interesting to see how much they have grown then. Got a feeling my feed bill is going to start going up rapidly after they get the FHM's cleaned out. I can still see schools of the FHM fry around shallow water hugging the bank. So far the FHM adults are still cranking out babies.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/05/20 10:06 PM
[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]

Originally Posted by snrub
Picking up a pound of HSB fry from KEO Fish Farms at 8am Monday morning. Should be back at the pond around 4pm to put them into this forage pond to grow out. A pound of these fry should be between 400 and 500 fish, depending on what size he has at the moment. He said he would try to get me some of the larger size.

Thanks to NEDOC for showing me his cage raised HSB a couple years ago at his place and getting me excited to raise some.

NEDOC chronicles of stocking HSB thread

Got a couple of local PBF'ers that hopefully I can help stock their ponds with some if I get them raised up to size successfully. If most of them live I will have a way more than I need for my other ponds.

51 days from stocking today and this is my first HSB out of this pond caught on hook and line. 1/64 oz jig for a hook and a Gulp Alive green waxie for bait. 6" long and I caught 4 more in short order all in the 5-6" range.

They are hitting pellets really well now. Still see them thrashing the water in schools I presume whooping up on the FHM's in about a 3' diameter frothy circle on the surface. Top picture was size at time of stocking.

[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]

[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]

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Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/06/20 02:34 AM
Good work at growing these HSB. You are providing plenty of food for them. Excited to see what they will look like in 1 yr then 2 yrs.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/06/20 12:39 PM
That's some pretty good growth already. Do ya have a guess of what these will weigh next year? Thought it might be cool to look back and see hoe close your guesses are.
Posted By: Snakebite Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/06/20 02:17 PM
Snrub, did you caught these from the forage pond or from the stock you introduced into the main pond? Looks like really healthy HSB too.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/06/20 02:39 PM
From the forage pond. Caught another 6 last night hook and line and walked them over to the main pond.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/06/20 02:44 PM
Originally Posted by RStringer
That's some pretty good growth already. Do ya have a guess of what these will weigh next year? Thought it might be cool to look back and see hoe close your guesses are.

I have no clue but if you look back through these posts as I recall someone very thoughtfully gave me estimates of feed consumption and growth and I think he knows what he is talking about.

If you want to come over and fish some out or we might be able to get some with a cast net you are welcome to some. They probably are not quite big enough to escape large LMB predation but if you want to get some early and then get some more later as they have gotten bigger (I'm guessing this fall some time) that would be fine. I figure at least a percentage will escape predation.

If most of them have lived from the original 500 there are still over 400 in this tiny 1/20th acre pond. I have taken out less than 100 so far.

I have heard they can be raised in really dense populations if the feed and aeration is there (I do have aeration in this pond). But I would just as soon thin them out a little and reduce the possibility of a fish kill. That goes for anyone else on this forum that have indicated they would like to have a few. Get a few small ones now that might or might not escape predation then get some more when they get a little bigger. By thinning them out in this pond the remaining ones should grow better.

If you have a way of transporting them, come get some. I have been thinking of making a transport but have not got around to it yet. A barrel would probably do it at this size.

I also have a small seine but not nearly large enough to go across the pond. But might be able to corral some in a corner or something if you don't mind getting wet.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/18/20 03:19 PM
Went out to hand feed the HSB I'm growing out in this forage pond. They are really feeding aggressively now.

But what I noticed was a half dozen newly cleaned beds. I could tell they were fresh because there was no algae on the limestone rocks in the nests and I could see the fresh sediment ringing them. I put 100 1.5" RES in this spring and I have caught a few a while back in the 3.5" range. I thought there might be a late fall spawn but was really surprised to see they were building nests this soon. I suspect there are some 4" and maybe a few 5" RES in there.

Surprising how soon sunfish will "mature" when there is no competition from larger bull males. All that is in this pond is the RES, the HSB juveniles and FHM.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/26/20 11:31 PM
Snrub any chance you will be around this weekend? I was thinking I could make it over there. Iv been wanting to check out your ponds for awhile now.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/27/20 01:00 AM
As far as I know right now. If you have a way to transport some come over and catch some HSB. They are about 6" now and could use some thinning out of their pond. You could get some more later when they are larger also.

Caught 8 tonight by hook and line and transferred over to my main pond.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/27/20 02:57 AM
snrub, I'll be down in Joplin for the weekend, I'll try and get over and say hello if possible also :-))
Posted By: jpsdad Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/27/20 03:09 AM
Originally Posted by snrub
As far as I know right now. If you have a way to transport some come over and catch some HSB. They are about 6" now and could use some thinning out of their pond. You could get some more later when they are larger also.

Caught 8 tonight by hook and line and transferred over to my main pond.

What a great success this project has been. Sounds like you are enjoying the catching and moving part of the process. How is the fishing for them? Are they finicky at all or do they bite readily?
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/27/20 01:24 PM
They are a "strange to me" fish. They don't hunt the shore line like a LMB that size would. They are more of an open water fish from what I have read and observed. They school and I will see a school of them boiling the top of the water (like shad or something being chased) in what I assume is some poor FHM school being attacked. I don't know of any other reason for these "boils" happening.

As far as catching them, they are persnickety, but not sure I know the best way to catch them. So far my success has been a tiny hook with a tiny Gulp waxie or maggot on the jig head hook in a fairly fast retrieve across the pond anywhere other than the shallow edges. If I see a "boil" of them, assuming they are feeding, I can throw into that or the other side of that and the boil instantly goes away and no strike. Any disturbance on the surface of the water tends to stop them from doing whatever they were doing. I just get random strikes, never when it first hits the water like a SMB or LMB often does, but always on the retrieve while the bait is moving. Retrieve too slow and they have too long to think about it and sometimes I will see them flash by the bait, if the water is clear enough to see, but not take it. They seem to like something moving fast and they strike before they figure out it is something they don't want. Tried a small spinner bait and no strikes. At 6" they do not have a very big mouth so the bait and hook has to be small. Have not tried the cast net for a while.

I have never found a time when it is just "wham wham wham" like bluegill will do when feeding. Yet at times I have been able to catch a dozen of them within an hour. When they hit the bait they hit it like a hammer.

Caught 8 last night and transferred over to the big pond.

I wonder if I maybe would not feed them for a day before fishing might help. They are tearing up the feed now. Their growth will probably slow as I do not feed them nearly as often as I should and the FHM's are getting thin. I'm trying to feed twice a day but probably should be a lot more often. The ones I caught last night were 6"+-. I will give you guys a private message with my phone number. I don't want to miss you if you stop by and you are certainly welcome to do so.

Give me a call so we can coordinate.
Posted By: Augie Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/27/20 01:52 PM
Try a very small chrome spoon (kastmaster/little cleo/etc.) We use big spoons (up to 2oz) on the Osage to catch hybrids/whites, and it's not unusual to hook a 6" fish on a 4" spoon.

Maybe replace the treble hooks with light wire single hooks to reduce damage done to the fish when they bite.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/28/20 02:06 AM
Thanks for that tip!

I've only started fishing when I built the ponds a few years back so I am not really much of an angler. I know how to catch BG out of my ponds and that is about it.
Posted By: MisterA Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/28/20 03:09 AM
Augie beat me to it recommending a spoon. I've never fished HSB in a pond but I have fished hybrids, whites and stripers for decades and spoons have always worked best especially on hybrids and whites. It is interesting that they beat it out of there when they are working the top of the water and you throw into them. My experience, albeit in lakes not ponds, has always been if you can get into them working the top, throwing into them isn't an issue and they will strike aggressively when the spoon hits the water.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/28/20 05:04 PM
A couple things that may make a difference in my situation is that the pond is tiny (1/20th acre) so the fish are very aware of what is going on around the bank. When I throw fish food out there is an arc near me with no fish feeding. Back up a few feet and they come closer to bank.

So I suspect even when they are feeding on the surface in the middle of the pond, they are still aware that I am nearby and that may spook them. The water has also been very clear lately except when we get a rain with runoff. That also makes them more aware of what is going on at the banks edge.

I can drive up in my UTV now and see the wakes of a number of fish heading my way expecting to be fed. But if they don't get the feed they quickly disperse.

Caught another half dozen last night. Will see if any place in town has a tiny spoon today and try it. Hope I can find a small enough one. Might have to order on line if not.
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/29/20 06:04 AM
Buy some Stubby Steves imitation fish pellets, cut them in half and use a small hook with minimal weight and no bobber. Or use that on a fly rod.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/30/20 11:42 PM
Got 25 of these HSB today from Mr. SNRUB. Also got some where between 20 n 50 RES. I had 1 hsb tht was struggling alil bit at 1st n mine pond. After 30 second or so it uprighted and swam off. Thank you very much sir. I used the smallest rooster tail Wally world has. They were hitting both the yellow n white. It only took use an hour at most to get them. Man those hsb even at 6 inches can fight like crazy. I cant weight to hook into a 3 pounder or more.

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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/31/20 01:02 AM
We did pretty good today.

I'm still amazed that the RES spawned and had fingerlings for you to take home. I only stocked those as fingerlings this spring.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/31/20 01:22 AM
I didnt measure any of them but I'm guessing 3 inches (RES). Yes thata seems crazy a fish that small has already pulled off a spawn.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/31/20 06:15 AM
Rusto, sorry I missed ya today. I did make it over on Sat late afternoon in time to see the feeding spree.
So well set up! John has some nice everything there. Seeing SMB come up 1.5' from the bank and smash Optimal hand throw bass pellets is amazing. That place is a true fish factory.. just beautiful.
snrub, thanks so much for the tour!
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/31/20 04:53 PM
By the time we had caught 25 of them mostly by hook and line and a few via cast net, the HSB were pretty much spooked. They did not clean up their feed as they were wary of what was going on. I'm glad we had pretty good success at catching them. I think getting any more than we got would have been a slow process as they essentially hunkered down.

They should be back to feeding full force today though.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/31/20 05:11 PM
Maybe next time Snipe. I had one of my twins with me. Before we even meet my daughter was saying how sweet the couple was. There were on an afternoon cruise on there pontoon/paddle boat. Defiantly quite the fishery for not being much of a fishman. PONDS PONDS PONDS oh and another pond lol. Very nice setup you have going. When you do something you go all out
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 08/31/20 11:10 PM
So I get home from work today and stroll on down to the pond and bout started crying. So far iv pulled 10 floaters. When I got home I did the add some of my water to the cooler and let it set. Which had a really good airatior going for them. I waiting prolly 20 minutes or so an added some more water for bout 10 minutes. When I let them go.had one HSB tht sunk n flipped over. I got him up n going and swam off (bout 630). Before bed (10 or so) took spot light down and didnt see any floating. So my question is what did I do wrong? I think in the 11 years iv had the pond Iv only found 2 to 3 ead fish. I know these where healthy when I got them. Only in the cooler for maybe an hour n 15 minutes.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/01/20 01:14 AM
I don't know but they seem to be pretty sensitive fish. I have had a few that I transfer over to another pond that will turn upside down. I upright them and they take off but it seems if you keep them out of water very long at all it is hard on them. I have had my best success if I get them to the next pond ASAP and just toss them in. When they slap the water they take right off. If I release them gently sometimes they stall and roll over.

They are kind of a strange fish, at least to me.

You were the guinea pig. I think Heath is going to come over to get some later this week. Will see how he gets along. He is probably only 20 minutes from my pond.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/01/20 10:08 AM
What is the water temp there?
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/01/20 02:32 PM
I'm not sure what mine is. I will check it tonight.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/01/20 10:32 PM
Just using a instant thermometer its 88 on the surface.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/02/20 04:38 AM
If you're going to angle for them, you're going to stress them beyond a normal degree. My suggestion would be to haul them in electrolyte to sedate them. Morones are notorious for not handling stress well.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/02/20 12:29 PM
I wondered about the angling stress. I had heard as adult large fish they sometimes fight themselves to death.

Been trying to bring them right in when angling, not letting them "fight" very long to keep the stress to a minimum.

Another thing we did was put a cage in the pond and put them in the submerged holding cage while we were catching enough. Would have thought that would have been better than holding them in the hauling cooler but it did require handling the fish an extra time to transfer them.

Seine would be the best but I do not have a seine big enough to cover the pond. I do have a couple of short seines but not sure I could herd enough up into a corner and catch them that way. Just have to try it and see. I would think they all would just go around the end.

I have a good way to raise them, not so good to collect them.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/02/20 02:22 PM
Maybe straight from throw net to cooler would have been better. As of last night I have lost 12. It still surprises me because most of them took off like rockets.
Posted By: Augie Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/02/20 04:04 PM
88° water + angling stress + transport stress. HSB will go belly up in five minutes, in an aerated livewell, when the water temp is above 80°.

Straight to the transport tank with pure O2 injection *might* work now. Think I'd wait until the water temps are below 60° before trying it again.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/02/20 10:16 PM
That very well could be the problem Augie.

My thinking was that I would like to thin them out somewhat at this stage to let the remaining fish have room to grow.

Started out with 500 in a 1/20th acre pond and have taken out about 100.

It has been said here on PBF that you are not an expert till you have killed a lot of fish. Maybe Rstringer and I are just on our journey.................
Posted By: Bobbss Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/02/20 11:32 PM
This might be a dumb question but have you tried trapping them?
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/03/20 12:20 AM
I figured out why they died. Just cant figure out why it happened........They quit breathing.... That's as bout as close to an expert opinion that I have. I have heard on here before that bass dont go in traps good. Snrub has had a small trap in there from time to time and as far as I know didnt get any of them. Full of RES and FHM.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/03/20 01:28 PM
According to Lusk, when the water temps hit upper 80's surface, catching them stresses them too much and can cause death. Since only a small % of dead fish float, we seldom realize that we are causing a problem. Unless I have a a cool front for several days, I don't get to fish during the summer.
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/05/20 02:52 AM
Ditto on the water temperature was a wee bit too high. Whenever I haul HSB, I use salted water, more so than for regular pond fish, make sure the O2 is going good and don't put more than a few in the net when moving from tank to bucket.

HSB, Golden Shiners and Crappie are very touchy fish to transport. BG/RES are "Goldilocks" fish. Not too hot, not too cold.

Ideally you want water temps to be in the mid to low 60's but then again water temp in the ponds shouldn't be more than 5°F different and not more than 3°F different is ideal. You can't change water temp more than 10°F in 15 min, and then you have to wait 20-30 minutes before changing the temp any more.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/07/20 12:07 AM
Thanks for those replies.

I knew we were pushing the water temperatures but my thinking was I would like to thin the herd a little so there would be less stress on the remaining fish left in the pond.

Heath Lawrence came over the other day but it was after a rain and we only got 2 HSB in cast net throws and none by hook and line. They were not even feeding on the pellets for a couple days because of the weather and water change. He did go home with some larger RES and some small RES caught in the minnow trap though so he did not go home empty handed. He is only a few miles away from me so hopefully the 2 HSB he got survived. He said they swam away anyway so fingers crossed.

Getting the time of year for cooler nights so maybe in another month the water temps will drop some and we will have better success.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Some more RES - 09/08/20 10:17 AM
I personally prefer long shank hooks. They are easier to remove from the fishes mouth.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/09/20 06:45 AM
By snrub:
Getting the time of year for cooler nights so maybe in another month the water temps will drop some and we will have better success.

31 here right now with snow John. FAR from coolest time of night too..:-)), never seen anything like this in my 54 years.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/09/20 09:22 PM
Wow, that is too cold for this time of year. The cold weather has not reached this far south. We are only getting down to about 60 at night. Hope the farmers crops were far enough along out there. We sure would not be with those kind of temperatures now.

Dave I also liked the longer shank hooks, especially the smaller sizes, because of easier hook removal and less swallowing of the hook. Then I started using jig head hooks and found I had a lot less swallowed hooks with them. Something about the lead head and the angle of attack the fish do not seem to swallow them as badly. Plus I did not have to add split shot to the line to cast them. So I use almost exclusively jig head hooks for my bluegill fishing now.
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 09/10/20 01:39 AM
Originally Posted by snrub
Wow, that is too cold for this time of year. The cold weather has not reached this far south. We are only getting down to about 60 at night. Hope the farmers crops were far enough along out there. We sure would not be with those kind of temperatures now.

Dave I also liked the longer shank hooks, especially the smaller sizes, because of easier hook removal and less swallowing of the hook. Then I started using jig head hooks and found I had a lot less swallowed hooks with them. Something about the lead head and the angle of attack the fish do not seem to swallow them as badly. Plus I did not have to add split shot to the line to cast them. So I use almost exclusively jig head hooks for my bluegill fishing now.

Another thing that people don't think about is how easy the hook is removed if the barb is bent down with a pair of pliers, or filed off. That makes a heck of a difference.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/18/20 05:15 PM
Getting these HSB caught and transferred to another pond has proven to be tricky. Hook and line works but slow and some days they do not bite. Cast net they have learned to skidaddle before the net captures them.

Maybe when the water gets cold enough and they slow I can get a bunch with the cast net.

A big seine would be the answer but I do not have one. Would have to pump the pond down some too.

9" are the size they are now. If some locals want some if they can figure out how to get them come on. I would like to get them thinned out before the remaining ones over winter in this tiny pond.

[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com][Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]

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Description: 9 inch length
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Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/18/20 06:58 PM
Snrub how many more do you think you have in there? I will try and get back over there for some more. Hopefully with the cooler temps it will help the survival rate.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/18/20 11:06 PM
I don't know. I have taken probably 125-150 out. Put 500 in to begin with. I can't imagine there are 350 left as I am sure there would have been some mortality along the way. But just judging on the way they feed on a busy day I would think there are at least a couple hundred left. Too many to over winter in that small pond in my opinion.
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/19/20 01:14 AM
If they are still feeding, go buy some Stubby Steves.
Posted By: jpsdad Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/19/20 01:21 AM
Hey John,

Here is a fun fact.

At 9" they are 6 times their original length. The power of the weight function is 3.139 and so the weight multiple is 6^3.139=277.1 ... so 277 times their start weight. Really great growth. I bet both the FHM and RES YOY help with it. Do you recall how much feed went into the forage ponds since stocking the HSB?
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/19/20 01:39 AM
Jpsdad I dont know ya but theres one thing i do know. Your smarter than I am lol. That's pretty cool to think about but i never would have before.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/19/20 03:13 PM
Agree with Scott about the Stubby Steves
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/19/20 04:49 PM
Have you tried liver as bait? It is supposed to be very appealing to HSB. We can see if it works on small HSB as well as big ones.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 01:30 AM
I fed ten pounds of starter, 40 pounds of Optimal Jr and I have no idea how much Aquamax MVP and 500.

Liver......hmmm. Thought about just trying worms and a bobber where the water is cold now. Might have to try it.

Nasty, rainy cold out there today. I'm yearning to head south but stuck here till about mid December because of obligations.
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 07:11 AM
I still cast a vote for https://stubbysteve.com/. Give Stacy a call or email.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 07:18 AM
snrub, I'm headed your way next weekend.. should I bring a tank?? I'd buy a handful of your HSB if you have a few to spare?
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 10:09 AM
Agree with Esshup about the Stubby Steves, especially if you toss out some feed first. They are my go to BG bait.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 02:53 PM
Originally Posted by Snipe
snrub, I'm headed your way next weekend.. should I bring a tank?? I'd buy a handful of your HSB if you have a few to spare?

You are welcome to get a bunch if you want.

You would be welcome to pretty much as many as you want if you could bring a seine and I could put a few more in my ponds during the exercise. Maybe we could sucker Rusty to come over and help out and get some.

If we could get something like that done I would pump the pond down some so we could get it done.

Looks like 50 degrees and pretty good weather next weekend. Being a diver I have a wetsuit and I could do anything that involved getting wet.

I'm game if you are.
Posted By: 4CornersPuddle Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 02:59 PM
This sounds like good fun.
You guys, please post a video of John "swimming with the fishes". "Diving for Wipers", yes indeed!
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 03:31 PM
It is just a few hours drive across beautiful western Kansas if you want to join us. grin grin laugh
Posted By: FishinRod Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 04:40 PM
And even prettier once you hit the Flint Hills in eastern Kansas!

Who knew that John's forage mini pond would become a leading tourist attraction in the state of Kansas laugh
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 05:58 PM
Originally Posted by snrub
Originally Posted by Snipe
snrub, I'm headed your way next weekend.. should I bring a tank?? I'd buy a handful of your HSB if you have a few to spare?

You are welcome to get a bunch if you want.

You would be welcome to pretty much as many as you want if you could bring a seine and I could put a few more in my ponds during the exercise. Maybe we could sucker Rusty to come over and help out and get some.

If we could get something like that done I would pump the pond down some so we could get it done.

Looks like 50 degrees and pretty good weather next weekend. Being a diver I have a wetsuit and I could do anything that involved getting wet.

I'm game if you are.
I'll bring 40' seine.. I can sure help you move some fish, be glad to help get what you need moved to main pond.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 06:13 PM
That would be great. When you get closer to time let me know when you will be here. I will get the pallets out of the pond and try to start pumping the pond down in a time frame that will keep it full as long as possible. I'm afraid pumping it down too early or too much too early might lead to a fish kill if I get them crowded in too small of puddle for too long.

If you have any suggestions on this I am all ears. I do have aeration I can turn back on if needed but probably need to pull the diffuser during the seine process. This will be new territory for me.
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 06:46 PM
Originally Posted by snrub
That would be great. When you get closer to time let me know when you will be here. I will get the pallets out of the pond and try to start pumping the pond down in a time frame that will keep it full as long as possible. I'm afraid pumping it down too early or too much too early might lead to a fish kill if I get them crowded in too small of puddle for too long.

If you have any suggestions on this I am all ears. I do have aeration I can turn back on if needed but probably need to pull the diffuser during the seine process. This will be new territory for me.

Pump it down, and run the diffusers as long as possible, then yank them, or just get in the water when seining and pick the seine up over the diffusers.

Better to seine 2x-3x than to crowd all the fish into one big pull. The HSB will wipe the slime off of each other when crowded. Make sure you salt the transport water heavily if just moving the HSB, you can go really heavy on the salt. 3-10 g/l. i.e. 7 -10 pounds of salt per 100 gal of water isn't too much for them.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/22/20 07:17 PM
Now I told ya friends call me Rusto... As long as you dont do it on a day we have Thanksgiving dinners. Hell yes I'm down like Ol' James Brown.
Posted By: anthropic Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/23/20 12:19 AM
Make certain that salt is very pure. Even a little additive, too small to be labeled, can mean death to the fish.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/23/20 12:35 AM
Yeah, I'd hate to try and count how many fish I've moved...I'll have salt and electrolyte, specifically for this.
Just call me Salt dip snipe...or just dip.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/23/20 02:55 AM
Good deal I'm past due to soak in some wisdom. Last time my survival rate was right at 50%. That's of the ones that floated. I looked at walmart for a seine net and parsons dont carry them. What do you recommend someone bring to transport fish. I'm sure alot of people could learn alil that. Maybe a separate thread. Sorry not tryin to get off topic. Ever heard I do that from time to time.
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/23/20 05:13 AM
I use solar salt for water softeners when transporting fish. For what to use, that all depends on the amount of fish to be transported at once (pounds). To be on the safe side, plan on 1/2 pound max per gallon of water and use pure O2 for an Oxygen source.

I cannot give you any advice on transporting fish without using Pure O2 (like O2 you would use for brazing or cutting steel).

I have transported some BG in a 120 qt cooler just by using a bilge pump and a spray bar that sprayed the recirculated water down into the cooler, but that was an hour tops drive.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/23/20 07:23 AM
I use aviator Ox when temps are above 55 degs or packing large numbers. We use Fish-C-haul and electrolyte. I like to use electrolyte on long trips because it sedates fish and lowers respiration substantially. I do not use salt on long trips. Bilge pump (aerator pump is best because it's made for extended run times) with spray bar is adequate in most cases. Keep in mind a fine mist pattern is better than circulating large amounts of water that "appear" to stir water. Surface area exposed to atmosphere is key. Spray nozzle made for 50+ gal/acre are good if you run a filter around pump base.
I have a large capacity capability RS, If it works out I can haul yours also.
I'm bringing several different seines so don't worry about that. Hopefully we can help snrub get what he needs moved.
I will also bring the items needed to show you guys how I "clean" fish for transfer. Gives them the best chance for survival.
Maybe we can get some pics and document the operation here for future reference?
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/23/20 05:57 PM
Originally Posted by Snipe
I use aviator Ox when temps are above 55 degs or packing large numbers. We use Fish-C-haul and electrolyte. I like to use electrolyte on long trips because it sedates fish and lowers respiration substantially. I do not use salt on long trips. Bilge pump (aerator pump is best because it's made for extended run times) with spray bar is adequate in most cases. Keep in mind a fine mist pattern is better than circulating large amounts of water that "appear" to stir water. Surface area exposed to atmosphere is key. Spray nozzle made for 50+ gal/acre are good if you run a filter around pump base.
I have a large capacity capability RS, If it works out I can haul yours also.
I'm bringing several different seines so don't worry about that. Hopefully we can help snrub get what he needs moved.
I will also bring the items needed to show you guys how I "clean" fish for transfer. Gives them the best chance for survival.
Maybe we can get some pics and document the operation here for future reference?

That sounds great. I am rounding up what I need to pump the pond down. We are selling out our farm equipment and I have sold the three 3" pumps I had but my nephews bought two of them and they are still parked in my shed so one is going to get used. I have to figure out an intake screen so will not suck up the fish.

The pond is 8' deep at one tiny spot in the middle so I figured pump it down about 3 feet which would probably be 2/3 the water volume.

It was originally paint roller shaped but then I expanded it along the east and north sides with a backhoe and dozer so we may have to seine those two areas seperately.

There are a bunch of RES in there also which we can sort them out and guys can take some of them also if they want.

I figure whatever is left in the pond after seining it a few times will just stay there in what water is left waiting for the next rain to fill the pond up. They will be there for the winter.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/25/20 01:11 AM
Sounds good to me. Do you guys have a day in mind? Snipe i wouldnt want you to have to drive out of your way. You already have a long drive. But if it's on your way it would be nice. Hated losing half of them within a couples days last time.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/25/20 03:49 AM
I go through Parsons so not out of my way. Saturday would work great for me if that works for you guys.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/25/20 03:23 PM
I think Saturday will work for me. High of 48° with 25% percent chance of rain. Not afraid of it just saying we gotta pull out the big girl panties lol.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/25/20 11:36 PM
I'm good with Saturday.

I have a 3" pump. I wonder when to start pumping before you arrive? It is a tiny 1/20th acre pond. I would not think it would take very long to drop it 2-3 feet.

Just trying to figure out the logistics. Are you thinking Saturday morning or afternoon?
Posted By: FishinRod Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/26/20 12:05 AM
16,000 gallons/foot on that size pond. What is your capacity on that 3" pump?

John,

Son just got back from college today. Said he would be available to help if you guys need two more sets of hands. He has long, skinny arms - he might be able to reach fish on the bottom WITHOUT drawing down the pond!
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/26/20 02:41 AM
Just name a time and I will be there.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/26/20 05:10 AM
I'll head your way snrub about 9am. we can assess the situation., RS we'll see ya when you get there.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/26/20 05:55 PM
That would be fine.

Looks like the weather is going to be good but chilly.

I will get the pump set up and ready to go Friday afternoon. Then get out about 6 or 7am and start it up. I think even if I only pump it down a couple feet it will greatly aid in our seining success. I don't want to get it horribly low so there is adequate water for what fish are left.

I could only find a 2" suction screen (to keep the fish out of the pump) so will just have to throttle it back to about what a 2" pump would pump. I'm not going to try and remove my multi-layer pallet structure till the water is down a little as I think it will be much easier that way. There is not that much of it if you recall seeing it floating around the edge.

So if anyone wants to join us, maybe around 10 am or a little earlier if you are a glutton for punishment. I think everyone that has shown interest knows where I live but if not PM me and I will give instructions.

Ponds are overflowing with the last rain we had so water is in pretty good shape.

Every fish we seine I will take out. It will either go home with someone or into one of my other ponds. We will miss enough to be plenty left behind for next year. If we do enough good job of removing fish I might even kill it off next spring and try a new fish raising experiment. I think the HSB experiment worked pretty good for no more effort than I have put into it.
Posted By: jpsdad Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/26/20 07:43 PM
Originally Posted by snrub
I think the HSB experiment worked pretty good for no more effort than I have put into it.

Pretty good indeed, John. You've stretched our expectations from 6" to 9"+ at the end of grow out. The FHM I think helped with that boost, if not finally, at least increasing growth in the early going.. You achieved really good growth. So you thought only 200 of the original 500 remain in the grow out. But at 9" and .35 lbs/fish (standard weight) that's 70 lbs of HSB. If your pond is 1/20th of an acre, that is 1400 lbs per acre in what remain. Who knows you may have produced >2000 lbs/acre of HSB or at least in HSB and RES combined.

Quote
I might even kill it off next spring and try a new fish raising experiment.

Should be fun seeing where this leads.

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Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 12:53 AM
Anyway you could pump it down to low real good seining level and discharge the water into another pond. Then when seining is over pump some of that original water back into the pond to aid winter fish survival?
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 01:07 AM
I was wondering the same, Bill. It has to be low enough to be effective for seining yet enough water to support remaining fish if so desired.
My seine is 1/8" mesh on my long seine so I'm guessing we'll sample everything present.
Posted By: Funky Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 01:16 PM
I have been following this line of posts and I have to say, You guys make my heart feel so good at the hand you are willing to give to help each other! This is just one more thing I love about this group!
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 03:58 PM
Originally Posted by Bill Cody
Anyway you could pump it down to low real good seining level and discharge the water into another pond. Then when seining is over pump some of that original water back into the pond to aid winter fish survival?

I thought about that Bill. The water will be pumped into the main pond which is where this forage pond naturally overflows into regularly anyway.

My only reservation about pumping water back is fish contamination. To date all there should be and all I have ever found in the forage pond is FHM, RES and HSB. That is what I stocked. If I pump water back I was concerned that most likely some small BG or something else would be pumped back thereby contaminating the pond.

If I kill it off I would not care though. But if I kill it off I really don't care if the remaining fish survive or not either.

We will see how it goes. I might even be able to pump it down so low and just let it dry up and kill the population off. With several other ponds it is not like I particularly need the fish anyway.

Since I have never done this before it may come down to a final decision when we see how the whole operation goes. If it pumps easy, seines easy, and I can pump it all the way down may just pump it mostly dry and take every fish we can. If it turns out to be quite a challenge may just pump it down half way, seine enough to get whatever fish people want, and leave what is left to fend for themselves.

Just going to see how it goes.

I figure I have already got my money's worth out of the fish I have already transferred to my other ponds, (probably around 100 HSB and hundreds of fingerling RES along with several pounds of FHM) although I would not mind another 50-100. So anything we get through this operation is just bonus.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 04:19 PM
LOL, yes a bunch of good people on here. On the other hand some may just be coming to see the "hold my beer and watch this" scenario. I'm sure Snipe is very professional on how this plays out but I am definitely not. grin

Not looking forward to crawling into that 50 degree water and pulling out my floating FHM structure and the aeration diffuser. They may have to hook a tractor on me to pull me out. It is surprising how hard it is to get out of a pond with steep sides and a muddy bottom.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 04:34 PM
Snrub I have no problem getting in there and doing the dirty work for ya. I dont drink beer either (I'm a bourbon man) lol. But tiein a rope 2 me might not b a bad idea either.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 04:57 PM
Thanks for the offer. I'll supply the towels and a place to change. smile I may be able to use some help. A couple of the pallets are about 3' thick multiple layers of boards, not just a simple pallet. So they will be heavy and old enough they are starting to fall apart. Time for them to be out of there anyway and make some new ones next year.

I may try to pump the pond down a foot or so later this after noon just to see how the pumping goes. I found a 3" screen for the intake hose so it should go pretty quick. I just have to be careful and drain the pump fully because supposed to get down to 27 degrees tonight. Brrrr. Don't want the pump to freeze and bust tonight.

But supposed to be sunny and nice tomorrow at least.
Posted By: FishinRod Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 05:46 PM
Originally Posted by snrub
They may have to hook a tractor on me to pull me out. It is surprising how hard it is to get out of a pond with steep sides and a muddy bottom.

There was a recent tractor thread on PB. Not a single person was thoughtful enough to mention the appropriate tractor to pull snrub from a pond. laugh
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 07:10 PM
Hey that is not a problem. Since selling out my large farm equipment (got about a third to half of it gone already) I treated myself to an early Christmas present. Less than 5 hours on it. You could say I am downsizing. From 600 hp tractors to 44.

Just grab me by the nap of my wetsuit with the 4 in 1 bucket. Try to miss the head though. eek
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Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 11:29 PM
It wont be the 1st time I got dirty. The cold sucks but I'm game. Now if I face plant nobody can put those pictures up on here lol.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 11:32 PM
Cant say iv even seen a bucket like that before. Lots of possibilities for sure.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/27/20 11:46 PM
Well I got the floating pallets and the cedar tree out. So we should be good to go there. Wife helped but it was an easy job as it turned out. Just put on my wetsuit and booties, waded out and tipped them up on the bank. Way easier than I anticipated.

Pumped the pond down 10" which exposed 2-3' of bank. Figured that would be good enough till morning. Will pump a couple hours in the morning and that should get it down enough to get the aeration diffuser out of the middle and to seine depth.

4 in 1 buckets have been around for at least 50 years. But usually on large TLB or crawler excavators. Fairly new concept on this small of a tractor and loader. I also have a grapple that I like really well for brush. Both will fit this new 4044 tractor as well as my 5083E JD tractor. Takes auxiliary hydraulics obviously.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/28/20 12:13 AM
Note - for the best seining efficiency the water depth should be around 1/2 the depth of the seine. You can always refill the pond if you save the discharge water in an adjacent pond.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/28/20 01:38 AM
Good to know. Not sure what height of seine Snipe has. As the pond gets lower and smaller in diameter, it should not take too long to pull it down lower if need be.

I am pumping into an adjacent pond but everything was full to capacity and at overflow level so whatever I pump in will go out the other pond overflow. But that is not really a big deal because filling the 1/20th acre forage pond out of the 3 acre pond would only barely drop it anyway.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/28/20 03:01 AM
I’m here shrub.
4’ on seine height... 25 or 30’ length.
RS and I talked about 8:45pm, I’ll be there about 9am tomorrow.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/28/20 02:35 PM
Pumping as I post this. Crisp 26 degrees here this morning. But the sun is shining and looks like a good day!
Posted By: Bobbss Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/28/20 05:20 PM
John, I really like your new tractor. It would probably be just the right size for my small piece of land.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 12:45 AM
I think I am going to like it too!
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 12:57 AM
Well the seining is completed and was a success! At least successful enough to suit me.

Wife took a bunch of pictures and I will share some of them but not tonight. I'm pooped.

But I will give just a short explanation. Ended up getting 200+ HSB that appeared 6-9" long with most 8" or better. And untold numbers of RES with a few of the original stockers from this spring at around 5 or 6" and hundreds and hundreds of 1" on up. Lots in the 2-3" range. That makes an estimated total of 350 HSB taken out of this pond from the original 500 stocked. And it would not surprise me a bit if there are 100 left in there because we could feel them hitting us going around the seine.

The fish all were very healthy in appearance. I was really pleased.


Took longer to pump the pond down than I anticipated, but we finally got the deepest part down to about 5' depth. We were using a 4' deep seine and not as wide as the water so we left lots of fish behind.

Thanks to Snipe, Rstringer and FishinRod for all their help. And especially Snipe that corregraphed the operation as well as provided and showed us how to use the salt bath to cleanse the fish. All fish (other than a few we caught with a cast net) went through the salt bath.

We all, along with Rstringer's daughter and my wife, had a really good time.

Man I am feeling some new muscles I did not know I had though. Slogging through mud and muck dragging a seine and climing up and down muddy banks ain't for sissies. When you pay those big bucks for the fish you stock from commercial fish sellers, those guys earn their money.

That's all for tonight but will try and get some pictures up tomorrow.
Posted By: Bobbss Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 01:43 AM
Sounds like you guys had a productive day! I would of loved to have seen it!
For the last year or so I've been looking and dreaming about what new tractor I would buy if and when the time comes and the 4044 has always been at the top of my list. Please keep us informed on how well it does.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 03:00 AM
I've had a JD2620 bought new and really liked it. Thought one a little bigger would ride better and be easier on my back so traded it for a JD3038E. Liked that tractor a lot too. Sold it recently to a guy that was tickled to get it. Decided I wanted to stay out of the dust, heat and bugs in the summer while bush hog mowing around the place so decided on the 4044 with cab. Started out looking at the 4066 and the 4052 but in the end decided the only place I would ever use the extra horsepower was in tall grass mowing and I don't particularly need to get that done in a hurry. So for the price difference in the horsepower for essentially the same tractor otherwise I would take the money saved and spend it on attachments. I hope I like it as much as I have the other two small hydro tractors. I can already tell the loader is a lot stouter than what I have been used to with the others. And I put the optional air seat on it so that is a dream on my back compared to the two others. I have that same air seat suspension in my JD5083E and it works good.
Posted By: Bobbss Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 03:41 AM
Thanks for the info John. I inhairited a little 20hp 4wd 4110 hydro with loader and mmm that so far I just use as a lawnmower here at the house. It is a nice little tractor and I like it and anything bigger would be to big around the house, but for over at my property I wish it was bigger. Until I get moved over to the new property and have a place to keep it a bigger one will have to wait. I think I will go ahead and get a small brush hog for the 4110 and see what it will do for now.
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 02:58 PM
When you get ready to upgrade it will not likely be a problem to get rid of the old tractor, at least in the current marketplace. Right now the little tractors are in high demand. I sold my 3038E and attachments with no problem and got a couple thousand dollars more than my dealer was offering me for trade off of a cash deal price. On new ones they run seasonal promotions with some good cash or financing deals.

On the other hand, if it is a good little tractor you can't have too many! Just keep it and buy another larger one. You will find the small one is much handier in some situations and the bigger one much better for other things.

It's only money! grin
Posted By: snrub Harvesting the 9" HSB for transfer - 11/29/20 03:33 PM
The first step in the transfer involved pumping the water down enough so the pond could be seined. I started the night before and pumped it down 10" just to see the rate of drop. My plan was to start pumping at 8am the next morning. When I got up it was 26 degrees outside and decided to wait till 7am to start pumping. I should have pumped a little more the night before and started a little earlier. We ended up an hour or two of waiting to pump more water out of the pond. This is my first time of doing such a thing. I'll have a better idea of how much to pump if I do it again. 3" trash pump.

While we were waiting the cast net became a popular pass time and a number of HSB and RES were captured and transferred to my main pond. Does anyone know how to rotate pictures posted on this forum that were taken vertically? I can do it easily in my computer but when I post them on the forum they always come up with the picture horizontal.

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Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 03:34 PM
Payton and I had a good time yesterday. It was interesting seeing the salt dip operation. It was very easy for sure. I want to say thank to all involved ( snrub & wife, snipe, fishinrod ). Snipe also thank you for hauling fish 4 me also. Walked the pond this morning and havnt seen one floater. Snrub thank you for letting me take bout 30 some HSB and countless RES.

Daughter has videos once she gets them on YouTube i will post a link. From left to right on the picture is Snipe, fishinrod, the Burns. I think John is saying what did I get myself into this time lol.

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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 03:45 PM
You are welcome!

The time spent while we were waiting on the pump was not wasted. Lots of discussion. Thanks to Snipe for his teaching us about salt baths, handling and hauling the fish.
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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 03:57 PM
The first seining attempt was on the north end of the pond in a small section where I had expanded the pond using a backhoe. Oh my what a mess. Where there was no compaction from the dozer plus no rock lining on the bottom the mud was knee deep. Poor fish in the seine. But it was a honey hole for small RES. Hundreds of them in the seine along with lots of mud. They were washed off best we could in the seine then given clear water baths and salt water bath. They appeared to be fine. Luckily things went better in the main part of the pond. Had the whole pond been like this I might have given up.
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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 04:07 PM
As the pump continued to lower the pond some exploratory wading showed that we still had about 5' of water at the deepest point. We decided to give it a try even though that was a foot deeper than our seine and we knew lots of fish would go around and under.

Snipe is about over the top of his waders. I had a wetsuit on so was not a problem for me but by the time we were done I was getting cold. Water temps around the 50 degree mark.

Lots of fish going around and under the seine. Could feel them hitting us on the leg. But we still got as many fish we wanted to handle at once in each net full.

Glad we had help! Turned out about just the right amount of people to get it seined and the fish processed. That all went amazingly smoothly. Had some good hands on hand. Thanks again to all that helped.

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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 04:23 PM
Some pictures of processing the fish.

From the seine they were dip netted into clean water and transported to the salt bath. After the salt bath they were either put in the truck for transport, a holding pen in the main pond, of transferred to 4 different ponds of mine on this property.

Note the fish in the salt bath floating. That was the sign they were ready to take out or if they had been in a few minutes they were taken out even if they did not float. As soon as they were put in fresh water they immediately took off. To an untrained eye they looked dead but instead any gill flukes or other parasites were dead and the fish were fine. Maybe Snipe will give us some more details on the salt bath process.

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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 04:42 PM
Some other random pictures. Water being pumped from the forage pond to the main pond. Snipe stirring up the salt bath mix. The fish being handled from the bucket before going into the salt bath. Did I mention I had lots of good help? No way I could have done this on my own and I joked with Carolynn asking her if just she and I should try it ourselves next time. grin That idea did not fly.

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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 04:55 PM
One thing that was really surprising was that there were still FHM in the pond. Some really big adults. Did not find as many babies because I think the HSB kept them consumed, but I assume the HSB had not quite got big enough to tackle the biggest of the FHM yet. Snipe noted that they had spawned even recently because of the wear on the adult fins meaning they had been nesting. Another inch or two of length on the HSB and the FHM would have been gone. I was pleased to still see some and we transferred them out to other ponds along with the RES and HSB. The fish floating in the bucket that looks like a little shark is an adult.

I was ask what the feeding regimen was for the HSB. I had stocked FHM as early as I could get some in the spring (2 or 3# I think) and fed them fish pellets so they would grow and reproduce rapidly. By the time the HSB were introduced the pond was teaming with FHM. So that was a big part to their positive performance.

As far as commercial feed I started them out on Optimal starter (they were fed Cargill starter at the hatchery). 10# total and about half way through it when the HSB had large enough mouths mixed in Optimal Jr. Fed one 40# bag of Optimal Jr and as it dwindled down started mixing in Aquamax MVP as their mouth gape grew. The local dealer had some Aquamax 500 and that is what I finished out feeding them. The amount total? I did not keep track. about 2/3 the way through I was feeding a standard size vegetable can (like a can or corn or green beans) about 10 times a week. More later in the process and less earlier on. They fed really well except after a big rain and an influx of water or towards the end when the water was getting cold. When the water got cold it seemed they were only interested in eating commercial fish food on sunny warm days so that is the only time I fed them. I quit feeding them several days in advance of the seining.


[Linked Image from forums.pondboss.com]FHM of spawning size.
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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 05:01 PM
Lots and lots of RES

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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 05:12 PM
Lots and lots of discussion. And finally pumping some water from the main pond back into the forage pond so the remaining fish (LOTS of fish remaining) would have some more water and not be so stressed. Raised the level a couple feet and that should be good till rains refill the pond again.

All in all a good experience.

I think for next year the remaining potential 100-150 HSB along with the RES and FHM will just let be grow out in this pond till the HSB get big enough to be fun to catch. maybe 12-15", then catch what I can.

Might end up doing this again three or four years down the road as I get the HSB fished out of my other ponds. We will see. Might do something else with this forage pond.

Anyone who has a big pond I would encourage make a small pond to experiment with if you enjoy such things. Small ponds are a lot of fun and if a person screws up are not to difficult to start over with a clean slate as this pond did for this year.

Sorry about the orientation of some of the pictures. I have not found a way on this forum to turn them. Other forums I am on allow for manipulation of the photo after uploading. If someone knows how I will go back and edit the posts. I can correct them in my computer but they still upload raw how they were taken.

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Posted By: jpsdad Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 07:36 PM
Great seeing all of the pics. I rotated the last two John, if you like just link their pond boss address in your post and I will delete this post.
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Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/29/20 10:25 PM
I can rotate them in my computer and any other place I need them. For some reason I just can't seem to do it on this forum. I'm sure it is just something simple I am overlooking or need some code added in the IMG link.

One other thing I will mention. I did not hog all the seined fish to myself. Three other PBF members took some home. smile
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/30/20 12:00 AM
YouTube video my daughter made. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=BAWsr2Av3j8
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/30/20 01:36 AM
Great job on the video Payton!

That shows the action going on so much better than the still photos.

Not only can she throw a cast net, she is a great video producer also! grin

What talent!
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/30/20 02:13 AM
Very interesting and informative forage pond harvest.
What was that hump / dirt mound for in the forage pond???
There are PTO driven water pumps that will make short work of pumping down and refilling a forage pond.
https://www.ruralking.com/sigma-tra...pump-6-inch-with-gear-for-tractor-sgpwp6
Posted By: FishinRod Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/30/20 05:26 AM
I asked snrub the same thing about the hump in the forage pond.

That is actually the old "edge" of the pond. He dug the original pond with his dozer. He later decided that he wanted a slightly larger pond - so he dug out a little more on one end using only his backhoe.

We found out the hard way that the bottom of the original pond that was compacted with dozer treads was much firmer for walking than the bottom of the portion that was excavated with a backhoe on the bank and never compacted at all!

If the muck had been any deeper - we would have needed to go on a Snipe hunt. laugh
Posted By: snrub Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/30/20 01:35 PM
FishinRod explained it.

That pond was expanded on the east side with a dozer where you can see the "shelf" and on the north with a backhoe. Mud was knee deep in that area where the backhoe did the digging. If a person is a glutton for punishment I think you can scan back through the dozen pages of this thread and I think I documented when I expanded this pond. I think I added about a third to its size from what it originally was. I think the expansion was done only a year or two after the pond was originally built. Originally it was shaped like a paint roller tray based on suggestion from Esshup. But when I expanded it (with water still in the pond) more bottom features became a part of it.

In that little north part I have always had good success catching small RES with a cast net. For some reason, probably protection, the small fish like that area. When we seined it no exception. Loaded with small RES and quite a few adult FHM that the HSB had not wiped out yet.

After this seining project if I were building a pond specifically to be seined I would be sure and compact the bottom well (our clay here holds will without much compaction). The rock lining in the bottom sure helped. But I would not make the pond so deep. It is about 8 feet at the deepest and that makes fish winter survival good. But if a person was going to annually harvest it I would probably only make it 6' or so. I like it the way it is for my purposes.

The water was a muddy mess when we finished seining but the next day it had cleared up pretty nicely with the addition of water from my main pond. There is at least 6' of water in it now and that should be fine till a rain comes along and fills it the rest of the way. That very tip of that "hump" in the picture is just barely sticking out of the water now. Water is all the way around it.

That is a really nice looking PTO pump. I bet that would work well. I used what I had on hand. Thanks for the link to it. I knew there were big irrigation PTO pumps but that one is not outrageously priced compared to a good 3" gasoline pump.

I don't think I am going to make this seining an annual event though. eek grin
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/30/20 07:42 PM
I wanted to add a couple comments to the above info.
A question was brought up about how it would be handled if the subject pond would have contained zebra mussels. Which is a good question but something I don't deal with in a pond environment but something we do face on larger impoundments and I'll give a quick run-down of how that's handled. First, we do not move fish from known infected water.. But lets just say for the sake of argument that snrub's forage pond had zebras (it doesn't).
The water supply from a well would be used (and should always be different) for the transport tanks. fish from seine would be rinsed while in dipnet with fresh, known clean water, such as the hose and showerhead we were using to rinse each handful of fish to clear veligers. From there they'd go right into salt solution, netted and rinsed again with fresh water and tanked. If fish are properly rinsed with adequate water there is no place for the veliger to exist as they DO NOT attach to gills like other mussel larvae do. To transfer the veligers it takes water in any amount probable in the process to make the pass. If fish are handled correctly and nets, buckets, etc, do not contaminate the transfer water it's very highly unlikely to carry any on the fish themselves.
About the above forage pond seine project,....FUN!!
It was a bit tuff but not too bad. Had some good help on hand and that always makes things work better.
snrub has a beautiful place there and in general, his waters are of such quality the fish grow very fast in a natural state.
Our process was pretty much explained on how everything went but I changed up a few things on the transport side I'd like to explain.
When we filled my 200 gal tank with water I knew we'd be hauling those fish to Rstringer's place so I used 50% of the electrolyte/sedative I normally do and the reason is that the fish coming out of the salt bath are already in Lala land and I wanted them to partially come out of that state vs being heavily salted.
I'm hoping that Rusto's fish all done well after release. I used a 50/50 mix of tank water with Rusto'd pond water for obvious reasons of temp/chemistry but also to bring those fish out of their semi sedated state at a nice slow rate as we transferred those into buckets and after a short period of time, then netted and dropped right into pond.
I don't know how many fish we moved total from seine to transfer but several thousand would be my guess. of those 1000's of fish maybe 6 or 7 were touched by hand and I think the guys involved caught on to my desires to never touch the fish if possible.
I think we did the best we could to insure a near 100% chance of survival for everything we moved. I actively practice "all fish matter" :-)) in my efforts to not introduce unnecessary slime removal that induces more stress and the dreaded "fuzz' saprolignia.
I feel this effort was well planned and executed and I'm glad we could make it all come together!
Thanks guys (and Gals!)
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 11/30/20 10:09 PM
That PTO driven pump that Bill provided a link for is rated at slightly over 52,000 gph. That will empty a pond pretty durn quick!!
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Building new forage mini pond - 12/01/20 12:45 AM
RES are active mollusk eaters. YP are known to eat snails whole as I have seen this. YP eat zebra mussels probably mostly as whole or intact individuals. What happens if a RES-YP eats a small 1/16"-1/8" zebra mussel whole. I assume the mussel will possibly survive intact the digestive tract process. Has there ever been any research published on movement of intact zebra mussels via the digestive tract of being eaten by a fish that is transported??
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 12/01/20 01:24 AM
I'm hoping that Rusto's fish all done well after release.



Took my normal stroll around the pond again tonight. Zero floaters so far. Not even 1 little RES. I thought at the very least there would be some small ones. If anyone is thinking about transporting fish on there own they need to read above discussion. That was a learning experience for me.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 12/01/20 02:14 AM
Originally Posted by Bill Cody
RES are active mollusk eaters. YP are known to eat snails whole as I have seen this. YP eat zebra mussels probably mostly as whole or intact individuals. What happens if a RES-YP eats a small 1/16"-1/8" zebra mussel whole. I assume the mussel will possibly survive intact the digestive tract process. Has there ever been any research published on movement of intact zebra mussels via the digestive tract of being eaten by a fish that is transported??
That has to bring up some interesting questions Bill.. I have asked my lead Bio in the past about RES eating Zebras and at that time he didn't know of any proven results from anything yet. I would have to think with the fact YP are present in decent numbers where these first appeared that there would be someone, somewhere that could answer that.
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Building new forage mini pond - 12/01/20 01:17 PM
It all looked suscessful but also looked like some hard work when i see walking through deep sludge. I enjoyed the story and the pics. Good job i think. And Bill Cody, Thanks for posting the info on the pto pump, i might need one of those.
Posted By: FishinRod Re: Building new forage mini pond - 12/01/20 02:33 PM
Originally Posted by RStringer
Took my normal stroll around the pond again tonight. Zero floaters so far. Not even 1 little RES.

Good job Rusto! (And Snipe!)

Did you guys estimate the total number of RES when you put them in your pond? How many of those healthy adult RES got transported?

Rusto, you may have to start a new thread next spring to report how they are doing in your pond.
Posted By: Snipe Re: Building new forage mini pond - 12/01/20 04:05 PM
I was guessing at 200-300 total on RES. Most were .75-1.5", several 2-3" and a handful of 3+"...Guessing. I think there was 4-5 fish closing in on that 5" mark.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/01/21 07:41 PM
Any chance you have caught any of the HSB this year?
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/04/21 06:09 PM
Snrub any chance you have caught any of the HSB this year. I havnt caught any myself. I do see them (I think) at feeding. All the fish are so fast it's really hard to tell. Also the water clarity still isnt very good since doing more digging. Just curious at the rate of growth of them.
Posted By: esshup Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/05/21 04:29 AM
Originally Posted by RStringer
Snrub any chance you have caught any of the HSB this year. I havnt caught any myself. I do see them (I think) at feeding. All the fish are so fast it's really hard to tell. Also the water clarity still isnt very good since doing more digging. Just curious at the rate of growth of them.

Here's one my buddies 10 yr old caught from my pond the other day.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

That fish is 4 years old, was stocked as a 4"-6" fish.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/05/21 01:59 PM
I cant wait. When these sucks where just like 6 inches or so they can put up a amazing fight. Landing one of few pounds will be a blast.
Posted By: FishinRod Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/05/21 04:18 PM
Rusto, I was hoping you would catch one or two this spring just to get an estimate on their growth rate.

Weren't the HSB you put in your pond last fall almost all in the same size class?

Hopefully, you can catch a few this summer on lures after the "spring smorgasbord" has passed!
Posted By: RStringer Re: Building new forage mini pond - 06/06/21 02:51 AM
Both times iv put them in was the same size yes. They came from the same batch both from Snrubs place. I dont really want them to get hook shy but I want 2 are the growth of them also. I will post a picture if or when it happens. Wish me luck...
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