Pond Boss
Posted By: Bill D. On Mutt Pond - 05/17/15 02:24 AM
Those of you that know me some from here at the forum also know I did a lot of my fish stocking before I found PBF. I now have what I call "On Mutt Pond." So what is the downside, other than hybrids, of dropping one male GSF in a pond with BG and PS? I am not going for some record of some pure species, just playing around with "what if." I also have one LMB in with six SMB. My puddle is small, what the heck, I can always easily start over.

This thread is for those PBF readers/members that aren't looking for a trophy this or a trophy that pond. Just good fishing on a Sunday afternoon with friends or family and, if ya get lucky, a fish fry at the end of the day.

Enjoy the time, life is not forever. Watching a little guy catch their first fish is your reward!

For you kindred spirits just looking for a good place to fish, I do not expect a lot of replies to this thread as it really doesn't fit the norm but, I will do my best to coax opinions out of some of the pros along the way. I hope you enjoy the view from Mutt Pond!

Happy fishing!

Bill D.



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Posted By: Bill D. Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 02:30 AM
I should also add I have stocked one warmouth, one WE, 56 YP and 16 CC.

I should also add, the deed is done done. The one male GSF is in there.

Oh yeah, I think there is a female HBG in there too! smile
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 02:35 AM
You know I think that is cool.... I might add me some warmouth also but not just one.. A mess of em... Like you said a mutt pond
Posted By: Bill D. Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 02:43 AM
Thanks for the support Buddy. I am thinking how much fun it will be to post a pic of a SF in a few years here on the forum with the question...."What is this?" grin grin
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 02:47 AM
Green eyed purple thingy... It's fun and that's what matters

Boy that will stir them up!
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 11:18 AM
Big mistake Bill. Dropping that GSF in is about like dropping a pit bull into a pen full of poodles. The weenie fish will be hiding under stuff and in the shallows.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 12:38 PM
Might make some interesting and aggressive puppies though... smile
Posted By: fish n chips Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 12:54 PM
Bill, I found out I had GSF after I stocked my BG. It looks to me that I now have some HBG. Will be interesting to see how it all plays out in the next 10 years. Some of them are getting pretty big, at least for what I have ever personally seen/caught. I don't think I have ever seen a BG, in this area, over 8" (pretty sad!). Can't wait till I hit that mark. I'm close.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 01:22 PM
Originally Posted By: fish
.... I don't think I have ever seen a BG, in this area, over 8" (pretty sad!)....


Same in my area. The local public BOWs are fished so hard, a 7 inch BG is a monster. One lake has a bag limit of 6 for BG. Another put a size limit of no smaller than 8 inches a few years back. I asked the ranger if a lot of folks catch 8 inch ones to keep and he said he hadn't seen one yet.

I am also hoping to have a few 8s in my puddle by the end of the summer. I caught a couple 7s a few weeks ago.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: One GSF - 05/17/15 01:30 PM
Originally Posted By: Dave Davidson1
Big mistake Bill. Dropping that GSF in is about like dropping a pit bull into a pen full of poodles. The weenie fish will be hiding under stuff and in the shallows.


Thanks Dave,

I have offically named him Bad Bad Leroy Brown baddest fish in the whole dang pond! grin
Posted By: Bill D. On Mutt Pond - 05/18/15 01:10 AM
To my PBF friends,

I have changed (to the best of my ability)the name of this thread to "On Mutt Pond." I have been needing a thread to share info on my experiment/project so this seems a likely place. Look for updates on how it is going if you have interest. The goal of the pond is simply a place to have good fishing and catch an occasional mess for a fish fry and learn and share what I can in the process.

Note to a mod: If I didn't do the name change thing right, please help.

Bill D.

Oh yeah, Welcome to Mutt Pond!
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/18/15 01:30 AM
Mutts Inc. It is as most of us are anyway.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: One GSF - 05/18/15 01:46 AM
Originally Posted By: Pat Williamson
Green eyed purple thingy...


Pat,

Please send me a pic of one of these. Would be a great Logo for the new On Mutt Pond Inc!

Ah, never mind, I am thinking I will have some purpled eye green thingy in a year or two to take a pic of anyway which should work just as well!
Posted By: Bob-O Re: One GSF - 05/18/15 01:56 AM
On Mutt Pond sounds like a nice place to this ol dog.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: One GSF - 05/18/15 02:09 AM
You are welcome here on Mutt Pond anytime my friend. Still hoping we can get together this summer and great to see you posting again!
Posted By: dlowrance Re: One GSF - 05/18/15 09:31 PM
Bill it sounds like you and I have similar goals in mind...someplace to go and throw a line in, with little or no idea what you may pull out.

And I'll admit it again - I personally like the GSF...he's a ton of fun to catch and at certain times of the year will bite dang near anything.

Also worth pointing out for those that say the GSF doesn't get big enough to mess with that the state record GSF for IL is over 2 lbs...

https://www.landbigfish.com/staterecords/fishrecords.cfm?ID=40
Posted By: mnfish Re: One GSF - 05/18/15 09:50 PM
Love the title Bill! The description fits my ponds to a T.

As a matter of fact, I think, if most of the fish swimming in my ponds had family trees, they wouldn't be a trees at all. More like giant lilac bushes!
Posted By: stickem' Re: One GSF - 05/18/15 11:11 PM
I like it, Bill....my pond resembles that handle...
Posted By: Bill D. On Mutt Pond - 05/18/15 11:49 PM
Originally Posted By: dlowrance
Bill it sounds like you and I have similar goals in mind...someplace to go and throw a line in, with little or no idea what you may pull out.....


I think that sums my goal up perfectly. Maybe that's why I have always enjoyed fishing rivers and streams so much. That unknown factor. IMO The perfect fish fry consists of "whatever ya happened to catch that day" and great folks around ya to share it with! smile

Thanks for the support guys! I will back fill some of the history of the project, as time permits, for any folks that might be interested.

Life is good On Mutt Pond! smile

Bill D.
Posted By: sprkplug Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/19/15 12:27 AM
I think having a goal, and a plan on how to achieve it, are the primary considerations. The goal itself need not be complicated or convoluted, a simple direction will often suffice.

I say go for it, and keep us in the loop.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: One GSF - 05/19/15 10:07 PM
Hey DL, glad to see another GSF fan. I clicked on the link and figure I may have beaten the Texas record. However, those are usually from public waters.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 12:59 AM
Guys,

Need some inputs. Mutt Pond is a water table pond. I can currently control the level with the well in times like now where the rain just keeps passing us by. I have a contractor coming next week to deepen and expand the pond. The question, do I minimize the size of the pond and maximize the depth to assure I can still control the level with the well? If say I double the pond size, I suspect the well will not be able to control the level. My current thinking is a small expansion but go for depth. Thoughts please!! confused

Thanks,

Bill

Pond is about a 1/4 to 1/3 acre at "normal" controlled pool.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 01:16 AM
More info.

I have a constant pressure variable speed well pump. 1.5 HP pump in a 5 inch casing. Normal operating pressure is 70 psig. When I open the 2 inch pipe to the pond the pressure drops to 60 psig so I know the pump is running at max speed when I do that.
Posted By: mnfish Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 03:34 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Guys,

Need some inputs. Mutt Pond is a water table pond. I can currently control the level with the well in times like now where the rain just keeps passing us by. I have a contractor coming next week to deepen and expand the pond. The question, do I minimize the size of the pond and maximize the depth to assure I can still control the level with the well? If say I double the pond size, I suspect the well will not be able to control the level. My current thinking is a small expansion but go for depth. Thoughts please!! confused

Thanks,

Bill

Pond is about a 1/4 to 1/3 acre at "normal" controlled pool.


If it's a ground water dug out pond and it is too low in times of a lower water table, I would go for more depth.

When you fill it with the pump how long does it take to lose the added water once you shut off the pump?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 12:14 PM
Originally Posted By: mnfish
If it's a ground water dug out pond and it is too low in times of a lower water table, I would go for more depth.

When you fill it with the pump how long does it take to lose the added water once you shut off the pump?


Thanks for the reply,

I'll answer your question this way, I can run the pump 24 hours or so per week (around 50,000 gallons) and hold level within an approximate 6 inch band that I call normal pool. If I try to raise the normal pool level I want to maintain, the pump would need to run longer (more $$s).
Posted By: esshup Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 02:48 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: mnfish
If it's a ground water dug out pond and it is too low in times of a lower water table, I would go for more depth.

When you fill it with the pump how long does it take to lose the added water once you shut off the pump?


Thanks for the reply,

I'll answer your question this way, I can run the pump 24 hours or so per week (around 50,000 gallons) and hold level within an approximate 6 inch band that I call normal pool. If I try to raise the normal pool level I want to maintain, the pump would need to run longer (more $$s).


34 gpm going into the pond sound about right? Or is it more and the pond is retaining 34 gpm?

I think you are in uncharted territory. If you accurately measure your surface area, and know the gpm of the water input into the pond, then you can calculate the leakage rate.

For instance, I know (or think) that in my pond, at the current pond water/ground water level, when pumping water into the pond, I leak 18 gpm and retain 7 gpm. I know the pond surface area. I am pumping 25 gpm into the pond. In a 24 hr period the pond should rise "X" amount on the yardstick that is in the pond. It only rises 1/4th of "X" amount, which equals 7 gpm over that pond surface area. So, it has to be leaking approximately 75% of 25 gpm, right?

I don't know if deepening the pond will increase the leakage rate due to more psi on the pond bottom, or increase the rate by more surface area on the pond bottom for water to leak out. OR if the leakage rate will stay the same.

Do some careful measuring before and after and report back. That will be good information to know.
Posted By: mnfish Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 03:39 PM
As usual, I am now confused grin (and sorry to hack this thread here Bill but I think it will be good for you original post)

Please help ESSUP! If the water table is "normally" at, for example, 24" below the top soil. If I dug a hole in that spot that was 48" deep I would have a pool of water that was 24". Now if I dug that hole 96" deep I would have a pool of water at 72". By digging the pond deeper I would have a deeper pool of water.

Isn't it a relative scale? So a drought happens and the water table falls to 48" below the top soil. A 48" deep pond has no pool while a 96" deep pond has a 48" pool. Where does the pressure on the pond bottom factor into the equation for a ground water dug out pond? Thanks and sorry again if this detracts from you post Bill!

Posted By: esshup Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 05:00 PM
Pressure on the bottom of the pond figures in when there is 96" of water in the pond. It might leak out faster at full pool of 96" depth than it does with only 48" of water in it at full pool.

Then again, maybe not because the water table is higher. Like I said, you're going in uncharted territory.

BUT, I believe it would if you wanted to keep the pond at 96" depth when the water table is 48" below the surface vs. at the surface.
Posted By: DNickolaus Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 05:35 PM
If you consider groundwater to be an infinite reservoir, and relative to a pond it will be, the pressure will equilibrate whether pond is 4' deep or 8' deep. There will be greater pressure down at 8', but the hydrostatic pressure is also greater and will balance. If the small tank's bottom moves down 2', the large tank will fill in to the same level. If two tanks have 3' of water in them, the level won't change if you pipe across 1' down or 3' down.

If the connection to groundwater is in the bottom of the pond, it will keep dropping as levels ebb. If the connection is 2' down, then theoretically it will quit leaking (badly) once you lose those 2' of water.

If you are concerned about transients, the filling and emptying process, if you open up more "conduction paths" to the reservoir, you will have greater flux in and out. Since the proposed work is on a filled pond and I didn't see mention of draining and keeping pumped out, compacting layers isn't a means to seal off the connection to groundwater. If that's true, any digging can only open up more routes in/out.

We don't know if the groundwater enters at 2' depth or at the bottom do we? If you know where your opening is, I would say dig in the other direction. If it's on the bottom, then widening and cutting soil away at 2' depth would seem least likely to increase leakage rates. If you have a ring at 2' depth, then going deeper would seem to least likely. If the whole thing is porous, then you'll just get more flow in and out during transients.

Just opinions from a guy who does fluid flow when not at the pond. Best of luck with the project. We're all rooting for you.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/20/15 05:42 PM
FWIW I see it somewhere in the middle.

IMO given a pond 96" deep and the water table is at 48" the water will be 48" deep. The water coming in from the water table will equal the water leaking out anywhere. There will be flow to some extent. Now if I have a heavy rainfall and water flows into the pond from the watershed bringing the level up to 80" but the water table only rises to 46" below grade, the pond will leak to both the watertable and anywhere else it can to get to the same level as the watertable.

In the case of my well adding water, the higher I try to keep the pond above the watertable, the higher the leak rate will be. Currently, I believe the pond is being held about 1 foot above the water table. I put in 50K gallons in 24 hours and it leaks down in about 6 days, after shutting off the water, to my starting point so I am leaking/evaporating 50K gallons/7 days or about 5 GPM

If I continue to hold the pond at the current level, that leakage rate will go up if the watertable drops further and down if the watertable rises.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/21/15 07:41 PM
Update: Guy showed up today to start digging (one week early) so had to make a decision on the pond expansion. I went with adding about 1/8th acre of 10 to 12 feet deep water to the main pond. That should bring the main to a total of 3/8 to 1/2 acre, depending on water level. Also adding about a 1/20th acre sediment/forage pond 8 feet deep.
Posted By: mnfish Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/21/15 07:56 PM
Pictures....we want pictures....we want pictures grin
Posted By: esshup Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/21/15 09:03 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Update: Guy showed up today to start digging (one week early) so had to make a decision on the pond expansion. I went with adding about 1/8th acre of 10 to 12 feet deep water to the main pond. That should bring the main to a total of 3/8 to 1/2 acre, depending on water level. Also adding about a 1/20th acre sediment/forage pond 8 feet deep.


Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/21/15 09:10 PM
smile I took a before pic. I will take a progress pic tonight. Hopefully, I can take one with the holes at least dug Monday but there will be a whole bunch of dirt/gravel/sand piled around. Will be awhile before the piles are dry enough to move/grade. I will work to get the riprap on the north shore and the swales asap but supposed to rain all next week so trucks probably can't get in.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/23/15 11:39 PM
Well guys, the rough-in dig is complete on the little expansion of little Mutt Pond. One new bay is shown in the picture, the other is behind the point you can see in the middle of the picture. The pond is about 2 feet below low summer pool in the photo do to the dig. It has come up 6 inches or so since the photo was taken.

I'm going to have to figure out another way to put in a forage pond. The test hole for a combination sediment forage pond was beach sand down to 12 feet and would have had to be so far upgrade, 12 feet was above water table. Really don't want to deal with a liner in what could be at times a very high flow sediment pond.

The two swales coming into the pond will now both be filled with mats then riprap. The north shore of the pond (partly shown in picture), will have mat and riprap for erosion as well.





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Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/24/15 04:13 AM
In my best Hank Hill voice, Damn it Bill excellent job. You must just be elated to have improved your Mutt pond so much. Every cubic inch of added water is just that much more of some type of life in your pond. I'm envious and happy for ya. Keep at it.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/24/15 04:34 AM
Thanks Bob!....I'm thinking I need ONE BCP! grin
Posted By: fish n chips Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/24/15 11:20 AM
Good job!!! I like the shape of the shoreline.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/24/15 01:18 PM
Thanks. I was trying to get as much shoreline as I could for habitat. Also, I just like the way an irregular shape looks. smile
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/24/15 03:38 PM
It's your menagerie but my uncle used ta call Crappie Crappy and tho I like ta catch em, I agree. Speaking of menageries, have you checked out Bobby Rices latest post? Gaaawd what a pond. It's too bad we're so far north or we'd be havin lots of converted salties. He was gonna set me up with some Flounderr but I found out their low temp tolerance was 42 and my pond doesn't stay quite that warm.
Posted By: snrub Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/24/15 03:39 PM
Bill my wife calls it "character". She wanted our pond to have some character. No nice round pond or any straight shore lines. Spent a number of extra hours on the dozer and scraper so our pond would have "character".

One of the conditions of being married to an artistic type with some imagination. I lack both of those features, but she has enough for both of us.

Pond looks good and nice house.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/24/15 05:58 PM
Cool! So Mutt Pond has "character!" smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/01/15 10:21 PM
Looking for some opinions....I was down tossing minnow traps tonight to do a little sampling and saw the BG have constructed 15 or so nests in the last day or so in about a foot of water on a mud bar 4 or 5 feet from shore. My concern is this is wading distance/depth for GBH and they come here nearly daily. I run them off when I see them. I only saw 1 male on a nest. The rest appeared empty. GBH get the adult BG or are these probably abandoned nests?

I am pretty sure these nests were not there yesterday morning but can't swear to it. Is it possible that BG will build nests all at the same time in a day or two? There is a nest on pretty much every small area of this mud bar.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/01/15 11:34 PM
Another question. So once the male BG builds a nest, does he wait for a female to come around or does he go out and attract one and lead her back to the nest?
Posted By: sprkplug Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 12:01 AM
Bluegills are colony spawners, and they do tend to build nests as a group. During the initial stages of nest building, I often observe my BG leaving the nest, most often due to a cold front passing through. I don't know what your temps are today, but it was almost chilly down here this afternoon. Combine that with a cool rain, and I think it would be enough to send them back out deeper for a bit. I'm betting they'll be back when it warms up a degree or two.

Once the males commit to the nest, I think they are less likely to be driven off....but not guaranteed.

The males build the nests, and the females choose their partner. The biggest males will often lay claim to the best spawning sites, often located in the middle of the colony, just for that reason...more appealing to the female.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 12:13 AM
Thanks for holding this newbie's hand again Tony! Yep, cold front going thru here. Do you have an answer as to whether the females come looking for the males on their nests or do the males go looking for the females and lead/herd them back to the nest?
Posted By: sprkplug Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 12:37 AM
The females show up of their own accord. One of my favorite strategies is to target female bluegills who are often staged just off the actual spawning site in deeper water. I've never witnessed a male leave the nest and come back with a female in tow, but I have seen them get pretty showy (spinning, flaring, etc,) when a female is in the vicinity.

An absolute classic, from a departed friend: http://www.sdstate.edu/nrm/outreach/pond/upload/The-Secret-Life-of-Bluegill-Jul-Aug-2005.pdf
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 01:03 AM
Thanks Sparkie! You are the best....except for maybe your wardrobe choices. That baby blue singlet you use for fishing HBG is not really that flattering to your legs! grin
Posted By: sprkplug Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 01:26 AM
Flattering my stork-like appendages is a tall order.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 01:56 AM
Sparkie,

I am going to post a picture of true "stork legs" for you as soon as the wife will take a pic of my life long supports!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 02:06 AM
So I was needing a way to get out on the pond. I bought an Old Town canoe Discovery 169 for $200 today. Not a scratch on it. Looks brand new. I know absolutely nothing about buying boats. How bad did I screw up?
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 02:25 AM
Have no clue Bill but it will be fun to check it out! Finall moved to the lake.... Home sweet home.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 02:31 AM
That is damn fantastic my friend! Catch a BCP and eat it for me! I like my fish sandwich on a lightly toasted bun with a thin slice of vidalia onion, pepperjack cheese, crisp lettuce and homemade tarter suace! grin
Posted By: stickem' Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 11:07 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
So I was needing a way to get out on the pond. I bought an Old Town canoe Discovery 169 for $200 today. Not a scratch on it. Looks brand new. I know absolutely nothing about buying boats. How bad did I screw up?


Bill,
Wear a flotation device (jacket). Canoes are not known to be stable like a Jon boat is...at least till you get used to it...
Posted By: Bill D. ID help please - Minnow trap results - 06/02/15 03:48 PM
I tossed 2 minnow traps out last night to do some sampling.

Caught lots of 1.5" BG and 2" FHM. I also caught these two in the pictures below.

I know the pictures are not great but had a heck of a time getting them to hold still. I would appreciate your guys thoughts.

The SF has orange on the flap. I have no idea about the minnow. Only minnows I have ever "intentionally" stocked are FHM.





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Posted By: Bill Cody Re: ID help please - Minnow trap results - 06/02/15 03:54 PM
BillD. Interesting fish in those pictures. Your unknown minnow could be a young golden shiner. We should get a confirmation from CJ for these fish. Sunfish might be a RES or Hybrid? It likely came in with the BG you stocked. We will have to probably wait until they get larger for a better identification.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: ID help please - Minnow trap results - 06/02/15 04:23 PM
I also stocked PS. Could it be a PS?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/02/15 10:18 PM
Originally Posted By: sprkplug
I often observe my BG leaving the nest, most often due to a cold front passing through. I don't know what your temps are today, but it was almost chilly down here this afternoon. Combine that with a cool rain, and I think it would be enough to send them back out deeper for a bit. I'm betting they'll be back when it warms up a degree or two.

Once the males commit to the nest, I think they are less likely to be driven off....but not guaranteed.



You were spot on Sparkie. Warmed up today and about 75% of the nests had males on them tonight.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: ID help please - Minnow trap results - 06/02/15 10:23 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
BillD. Interesting fish in those pictures. Your unknown minnow could be a young golden shiner. We should get a confirmation from CJ for these fish. Sunfish might be a RES or Hybrid? It likely came in with the BG you stocked. We will have to probably wait until they get larger for a better identification.


More info.... the fish farm I got my YP, PS and FHM from also sell RES and GSH....Hmmmm
Posted By: Bob-O Re: ID help please - Minnow trap results - 06/03/15 12:32 AM
Bill, I been a canoe enthusiast for a long time. Have had plenty and tho I prefer aluminum because of their lighter weight what you got should be fine for your pond. That canoe has a lot of room and weight capacity and is pretty stable. If you were to buy a new one it would crank ya a bit over a grand. Excellent buy !! I sold a 17' aluminum off brand in 1984 for $175 and that guy got a fair deal. Enjoy the toy but get used to it in warm weather.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: ID help please - Minnow trap results - 06/03/15 12:38 AM
Thanks Bob. If nothing else, maybe I got something of value I can trade later for a small Jon boat if this old man needs more stability!

Charlie,

Advice on life jacket noted and I thank you. I will pick up a couple.

Bill D.
Posted By: esshup Re: ID help please - Minnow trap results - 06/03/15 01:15 PM
A friend of mine sold his canoe and bought one made from Kevlar I think. He said it was 50% the weight of his old one, and has a lifetime no-leak warranty. If he poked a hole in the bottom, they'd repair it at no cost. It wasn't cheap tho.......
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/06/15 11:28 PM
Update...I see SF spawning beds in the shallower areas. The visibilty is only about 24 inches so I suspect there are some deeper ones as well. Lots of FHM are spawning in burrows they have made under flat rocks.

I don't know whether my YP spawned as the visibility was so low it was immpossible to see if there were egg strands. I also don't know if the SMB (3 year old fish) spawned. Guess I will wait and see.

So the forage base is growing great! smile I may be forced to stock LMB next spring to keep up if the SMB and YP didn't spawn. frown Heck I may have to stock the LMB even if the SMB and YP spawned. My forage base is skyrocketing and I don't want stunted SF.

Edit: ....and I know a lot of you forum gray beards warned me of SF over population but, heck it was an experiment!....hmmm maybe should have stocked more YP last fall...next time! grin
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/07/15 11:35 PM
The SF apparently have accepted the pond expansion. Nests are covering the spawning shelf I built for them in the new east bay in about 2 feet of water.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 02:26 AM
Interesting development. I changed the timer on the aerator from 1.5 hours to 4.5 hours last night. So now 1:00 to 5:30 AM run. Tonight, the toadpoles were in clumps around the pond instead of all spread out, I did not see male BG on nests and feeding when I tossed the pellets was way down. Is it possible I dropped the overall pond temp enough to cause this? Should I have changed the aerator run time more slowly?
Posted By: esshup Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 03:06 AM
What does your thermometer say? Did you get a bunch of rain today that could have changed the temp?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 03:16 AM
No rain today and I am ashamed to say it never occurred to me to measure water temps before and after the aerator time change. Dangit! Still learning!
Posted By: sprkplug Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 03:17 AM
Another vote for cold rain.
Posted By: sprkplug Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 03:18 AM
No rain today. Any last night or yesterday?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 03:22 AM
Yesterday got a half inch in an off and on rain all day. So you guys are saying maybe I didn't screw up again?? smile
Posted By: sprkplug Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 03:28 AM
No, you probably didn't screw up. Your water temps dropped after the rain, and the fish moved off. They'll be back.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 03:37 AM
Gosh dangit Sparkie, Off, On, back again, gone again!! Must be driving them nuts! Plan is to move the giant dirt piles around the pond this week, weather permitting. That should scare the heck out of them. I am starting to feel like the father that keeps flashing the porch light when his daughter just got home from her first date! Ain't never gonna get that first kiss with me around!
Posted By: mnfish Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 03:45 AM
My fish must be experiencing the same frustrations as yours Bill. The BCP are still full of eggs. They should have been done a couple of weeks ago but are just now going on bed.
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 04:13 AM
Speaking of mutt
Just caught 2 8" warmouth and added them to my puddle. So that aught to add to the mix
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 02:11 PM
Any pictures you can share of the warmouth? I don't think we see them in lakes around my house and I'd like to learn to recognize them.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/09/15 06:11 PM
Originally Posted By: Pat Williamson
Speaking of mutt
Just caught 2 8" warmouth and added them to my puddle. So that aught to add to the mix


Pat,

Do you know whether they were male or female?
Posted By: Bill D. Fall or Spring Stocking? - 06/10/15 12:24 AM
Another question...most of you know I have a northern pond. If you put the "when the fish are available thought to the side," what makes more sense, add biomass to the pond and stock new fish in the fall when you know they aren't going to grow much over the winter under the ice or wait till spring to stock?
Posted By: esshup Re: Fall or Spring Stocking? - 06/10/15 02:24 AM
That depends.
















on the species of fish, and the size that you are stocking.

i.e. if you are stocking 1"-3" YP in the fall, those are the left over runts or perch that didn't grow very fast at all.

Also, if you don't have a lot of cover in the pond, and rely on underwater weeds to provide cover for the YOY fish, then when the weeds die back in the winter, a lot of them will be eaten.

It also depends on whether you are stocking a newly dug pond that does not have a fish population in it or one that does.

It's not as cut and dried as "what's better?".
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall or Spring Stocking? - 06/10/15 12:57 PM
Good point. I was thinking more about extra biomass in the pond over the winter and not getting anything out of it. My thought was, let the fish farm worry about keeping them alive over the winter and you would be stocking the stronger survivors in the spring.

So, using your YP as an example, if your fish farm has 2 to 3 inch YP available for spring stocking, these are 1 year old fish (spawned previous spring). How big should a YP be in a year if it is not pellet trained? Is a 3 inch fish a runt? Would 3 to 5 inch YP be better to spring stock as these are probably the faster growing fish that are also 1 year old? Then there is the concern the fish farm sorted the YP and the smaller are mostly male and the larger are mostly female so do you stock two sizes?

Seems there is a lot more to stocking the game fish in your pond than just calling up the fish farm and stocking sizes that won't be snacks for the other fish.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall or Spring Stocking? - 06/12/15 03:13 AM
For YP...should you stock 5+ inch fish in the spring, before spawn, so you can observe if you have a good mix of male and female by checking for gravid females?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/14/15 02:10 AM
Well, I have been praying for some rain to fill the pond after the expansion. Might have screwed up. Flood warnings here now. Raining cats and frogs. My cup may runneth over!...Sure hope they are bullfrogs! smile
Posted By: SetterGuy Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/14/15 12:00 PM
According to climate.com I've received another half inch at our place in NE Missouri. I'm glad your pond is getting full! Mine is up about a foot this month. Couple more to go. Looks like rain is in the forecast.. How about a pic of a full pond? I like to imagine what mine will look like. Ha
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/14/15 12:51 PM
SG,

Well, it filled to what I condsider just about the perfect level. 2.5 inches of rain brought it up about 2.5 feet. I will try to get down when it is not raining to take a pic or two. Still hard to see with all that dirt still piled around. Guys came Thursday to move it but got rained out after only moving a couple hundred yards.

I'm looking forward to seeing a pic of yours full as well!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 03:39 PM
Well we got 5 inches so far. Here are a few pics.

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Description: This little 8 inch fella was very interested in my picture taking activity.
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Posted By: SetterGuy Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 06:06 PM
Looks great! We have been getting lots of .5" to 1" rains. (Another one yesterday.) I'm filling one inch at a time though, because there is never any runoff with these rains. I've got close to 10 acres filling my one ac pond, but I need a gully washer to fill it. I was up there this morning. It looks like I still need close to three feet to actually fill it.
I've been following your info on plantings too. I hope they do alright. My pond level is just too low to start planting.
I'm jealous. Ha.. Your pond looks great.
Jeff
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 07:02 PM
Thanks. A long way from looking great but I am just happy it is dug and it is full! A lot of dirt to move still and tons of landscape type stuff will probably be ongoing all summer.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 07:14 PM
Sorry Bill, it ain't gonna be goin on all summer. You'll be plantin, pruning. rakin, mowin, sprayin and cussin for as long as your ol bones allow it. Thing is that's the kind of labor that is fun and very rewarding.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 08:09 PM
Yea, I know Bob....Ain't it Great!!! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 08:49 PM
Had my son walk the pond with his phone app to measure acerage again. So the numbers are in. After the recent expansion, the pond is .32 acres at low pool and .43 acres at the current pretty much full pool. I am thinking knowing this basic info will come in handy to help with pond mangement many times in the future.
Posted By: stickem' Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 09:58 PM
Looks good Bill....I'm excited for ya...keep the pics coming as you progress.
Charlie
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 10:37 PM
Looking good Bill, keep up the good work and more pix please
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/16/15 11:09 PM
Dang, for once you are correct! Now if we could just get Pat Longhorn on line!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/18/15 12:39 AM
So my wife and I are knealing by the pond looking at the different kinds of tadpoles and guess who shows up. The same dang frog came swimming over and sat there about two feet from us just watching. I had read they could become pets. I am starting to be a believer!

The guy doing the pond expansion commented about a frog that kept coming around to watch the dig.
Posted By: snrub Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/18/15 12:53 AM
Lookin gooood.

Hope you enjoy your pond as much as we do ours.

We have some big bullfrogs I can drive right up next to with 4 wheeler. I kind of watch I don't run over them feeding. Now if I walk towards them, they will jump in when I get a few feet away. But for some reason they will let the 4 wheeler drive right past them within a foot.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/18/15 01:28 AM
Thanks man. I appreciate the sentiment but I know it's not looking good..... YET! smile

I may have to hit the internet for a source for "Frog Treats" if this guy keeps following us around! Cute little fella.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/18/15 01:47 AM
Another weird thing happened at the pond today. When I walked down I saw a Kingfisher sitting on the pole I use to monitor water depth. I am messing around in the pump house and the dang bird flew over to the peak of the house not 2 feet from my head. I looked up and said hey! get out of here. He squawked and flew off! I guess I don't look very threatening to wildlife!
Posted By: SetterGuy Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/18/15 12:20 PM
My kingfisher squeaks at me all the time.. As soon as I show up he will fly around squawking until he eventually flies off.
The other day two green herons were working the shore lines. I got out the binoculars. They eat a lot more than the kingfisher does. All FHM, but they get quite a few..
As soon as I saw their success rate, they decided to move on..
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 06/18/15 11:36 PM
Yea! I have a GH that thinks he owns the place. If I walk down he just flies to a tree and waits for me to leave. Have to admit, it's the GBH that drive me crazy. They can take a serious size fish. There are many that fly over everyday and a few that stop. Running out of ideas on how to run them off. I considered the fishing line fence idea but realized I would be spending all my time untangling deer from the line when they come to drink!
Posted By: Bill D. Turtle in Mutt Pond - 06/23/15 11:58 PM
I was down feeding the fish tonight and saw something about 1.5 to 2 inches wide slowly rising to the surface. A slightly pointy nose and two beady eyes broke the surface and looked at me. It was a turtle. Neck and head is what was 1.5 to 2 wide. Underside of head, neck, legs and body are all yellow. Body looked to be 8 or so inches across. That's all I could see before he dropped out of sight. Anybody got any thoughts on what kind he might be?
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Turtle in Mutt Pond - 06/24/15 01:28 AM
Yall get red ear sliders up there?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Turtle in Mutt Pond - 06/24/15 01:39 AM
Yep. Do they get that big?
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Turtle in Mutt Pond - 06/24/15 01:59 AM
I got one that I throw feed to and its 12"+-
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Turtle in Mutt Pond - 06/24/15 02:14 AM
Cool! This guy had the whole pond to surface in and chose to do it 4 feet from me to check me out. I suspect I will have photo ops in the future.
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Turtle in Mutt Pond - 06/24/15 02:40 AM
I like turtles in the pond. Watched one laying eggs, now that's cool. Missed part of the ceremony, sure would like to know how the dig that round bell bottom hole
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Turtle in Mutt Pond - 06/25/15 02:38 AM
I hung into a huge turtle last weekend at the local state park. Biggest thing I have ever had on a fishing pole. At one point he came up and gave me the evil eye. His head was easily 4 to 5 inches across. I was fishing from shore and had 12 pound test with the drag set perfect. HE PLAYED ME for a while and then decided to spool me. He acted like I wasn't even there! Now I know how a mosquito must feel when they are nonchalantly swatted!
Posted By: Bill D. On Mutt Pond - 07/02/15 02:30 AM
I am having a great time feeding the fish their snack every evening. When I walk up to the pond I see fish coming from everywhere when they see me. Looks like a mini wave pool as the CC come in. Think I may start heading down there in the morning with my first cup of Joe in hand to toss a few pellets. Great way to start the day I'm thinking. My thought is I need to feed more areas but would like some inputs on that. I tossed a few handfuls in previously unfed areas tonight and right away SF came up to feed.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/02/15 03:55 AM
Bill, when it's calm I always feed em right off the end of the pier. If there's an E wind I feed from the E side and watch em follow the pellets as they drift across the pond. Whenever there's a wind I feed with my back to it and don't wing it out too far. I've checked the down wind shore several times and it appears very few pellets complete the journey.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/06/15 09:26 PM
Thanks for the tip Bob. Works great! Seems the CC don't care where I throw the food in. They are near the surface waiting for me when I go down in the evening to feed. As soon as I throw the first handful of pellets they come swimming at full speed from every corner of the pond. I still don't see that many SF coming to feed now but I think it may be I just can't see them since the CC are making such a ruckus.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/06/15 10:21 PM
CC are pretty piggish. I have a few that I believe hitchhiked in with FHM yrs ago. I shot one and have caught several. I believe I hooked one last Fri when Fatih and company were here but snapped my line. My minnows always get to the food first, then the HSB and then YP. The CC are spotty but they just cruise up and suck em down. The HSB an YP are very splashy. Always feed by hand and always enjoy it.
Posted By: poppy65 Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/07/15 03:25 AM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
CC are pretty piggish. I have a few that I believe hitchhiked in with FHM yrs ago. I shot one and have caught several. I believe I hooked one last Fri when Fatih and company were here but snapped my line. My minnows always get to the food first, then the HSB and then YP. The CC are spotty but they just cruise up and suck em down. The HSB an YP are very splashy. Always feed by hand and always enjoy it.


The HSB surprised me at how much they eat. Just put them in this past may at about 2 and 1/2 pounds each. Only put in 6 and they seem to have staked out their feeding area near the shore in about 2 feet of water. I expected them to feed in deeper water. They do splash a lot and don't seem to mind my being a few feet from them. I'd like to try to get them to eat from my hand but there is one huge snapping turtle that comes to eat pellets right in front of me and I don't want him latching onto my fingers.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/07/15 01:01 PM
Hey Poppy,

Where did you get yer HSB?
Posted By: poppy65 Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/07/15 01:22 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Hey Poppy,

Where did you get yer HSB?


I got them from Jeff Blankenship at Vandalia. I have his number if you need it.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/07/15 01:36 PM
Yes, please send me a PM. Do you know if he ships? Does he own a hatchery/fish farm? Do you know what other kinds of fish he sells?
Posted By: snrub Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/07/15 01:56 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
I am having a great time feeding the fish their snack every evening. When I walk up to the pond I see fish coming from everywhere when they see me. Looks like a mini wave pool as the CC come in. Think I may start heading down there in the morning with my first cup of Joe in hand to toss a few pellets. Great way to start the day I'm thinking. My thought is I need to feed more areas but would like some inputs on that. I tossed a few handfuls in previously unfed areas tonight and right away SF came up to feed.


This is my opinion only and is unsubstanciated by research or facts. So take it for what it costs you.

I think if a person is feeding for trophys then concentrating the feeding position will let the most aggressive fish get most of the feed and benefit from the competition of the other fish.

If a person is feeding for overall general growth of the fish population, including the forage fish that feed the larger fish, I think feeding over a broader area (I feed all along the shore line and spread the feeding area out) will result in a more general growth of the general fish population instead of the feed benefiting a smaller more targeted big fish group. Also adding a small portion (maybe up to 30%) of feed that sinks allows some of the more timid fish to reach the feed. At least that has been my observation.

Nothing backing up this opinion other than my observations.

Forgive my spelling for the next few weeks. I can't for the life of me figure out how to make the spell checker show me corrected spelling on this Tab.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/08/15 01:49 AM
Snrub,

I think yer right. I want to feed anybody that wants a snack but keep feeding at a "supplemental" level. I will start to feed more areas.

Thanks,

Bill D.
Posted By: snrub Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/08/15 03:30 AM
I don't have a feeder (unless my grandson counts, he is feeding the fish while wife and I are on the road), but if I did I would set the feeder in the best location, then hand feed other areas of the pond.

On my 3 acre pond 3 feeding positions are generally recommended. Three TH feeders don't come cheap! Then there is the old 1 acre pond, forage pond and sediment pond currently acting as a forage grow out pond. That is 6 feeders! frown

Talked about getting a feeder and wife discouraged it. Said I enjoy hand feeding the fish so much, it would diminish my enjoyment.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 07/08/15 09:50 AM
I finally broke down and bought a TH. And, I still hand feed in various places.
Posted By: Bill D. Beached YP - 07/26/15 01:08 AM
Interesting development to me, although, I am sure a lot of you guys have seen this before.

Lately, my YP have been feeding heavily on minnows in a small cove in the pond. Today I walked down and found a semi dry 7 inch YP about 6 inches up on the bank tangled in some Red Fescue. It apparently chased a minnow just a bit too hard and ended up beaching itself. Does this happen often??
Posted By: poppy65 Re: Beached YP - 07/26/15 07:46 PM
I've only had YP a couple years and haven't seen one beach himself but I suppose they could. I did have a SMB beach himself chasing a frog out of the water but he flopped around and got back in.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Beached YP - 07/26/15 08:16 PM
I think that's probably what happend in this case. He just got hung up in the fescue. I've seen FHM jump up on the bank to avoid a predator and then flop back but, I don't think there is anything big enough in my pond yet that can chase/eat a 7 inch YP.
Posted By: Bill D. Harvest Time - 08/09/15 11:46 AM
First harvest has begun on Mutt pond.

Second photo is of the CC my youngest son, Daniel, and my niece caught to get the harvest started. The fish averaged 2.2 pounds. I consider perfect size for CC harvesting of 2 to 3 pounds so these guys were right in the slot.

First photo is a 8 1/4 inch HBG (Thanks for the ID help Cecil). I really like the white fins and fin tips. This one was returned to the pond.







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Posted By: snrub Re: Harvest Time - 08/09/15 02:41 PM
I agree on the 2-3# being an ideal size for the CC. We have been harvesting ones mostly in the 1.5-2# range and the two pounder have a nice amount of meat. I figure we need to get started this year and get some of them out so we are not overloaded in trying to catch them all next year. By next year ours ought to be perfect size.

That is a pretty hybrid. The white fin tips really stand out.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Harvest Time - 08/09/15 03:37 PM
Nice fish and a good lookin kid. Bet he got that from his mom.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 08/09/15 10:11 PM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
... a good lookin kid. Bet he got that from his mom.


You got that right Robert!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 08/09/15 11:12 PM
Originally Posted By: snrub
I agree on the 2-3# being an ideal size for the CC. We have been harvesting ones mostly in the 1.5-2# range and the two pounder have a nice amount of meat. I figure we need to get started this year and get some of them out so we are not overloaded in trying to catch them all next year. By next year ours ought to be perfect size.



Ours have been ranging from 1 lb 10 oz to 3 lbs. It was really nice to see no yellow or red meat on the fillets; all snow white meat. I suspect that has to do with supplemental feeding grain based pellets along with the natural food.
Posted By: snrub Re: Harvest Time - 08/10/15 03:51 AM
Ours also have been nice white meat.

We have been using the technique learned here on PBF (think it might have been Pat Williamson????) of dropping the CC in an ice chest filled with ice and water and leave them an hour or two before cleaning. Wife adds some salt to lower the temperature even more. The blood mostly goes out of the meat and into the organs as the fish tries to survive the cold. Really takes the blood out of the meat well and makes a simple way to kill the fish without it squirming around.

Wife got in a little hurry with one batch and only left in the ice water a short time. She did not like it near as well. Lot more blood to soak out of the meat after cleaning.

In the past I was never a big catfish fillet fan. What I had eaten in restaurants sometimes was a little greasy or just not nice white flaky meat that I like. My favorite all time fish is Long John Silvers Haddock. I like fish that don't taste fishy. Don't care much for oily fish like Salmon or Trout. I'll say that the CC we have raised in our pond is as good as any fish I have eaten.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 08/11/15 12:35 PM
Originally Posted By: snrub
.....We have been using the technique learned here on PBF (think it might have been Pat Williamson????) of dropping the CC in an ice chest filled with ice and water and leave them an hour or two before cleaning. Wife adds some salt to lower the temperature even more. The blood mostly goes out of the meat and into the organs as the fish tries to survive the cold. Really takes the blood out of the meat well and makes a simple way to kill the fish without it squirming around.
.......


I have been using Pat's method as well (minus the salt). Works great! smile
Posted By: snrub Re: Harvest Time - 08/14/15 05:29 AM
The salt just lowers the water temperature below normal freezing temperature. Like adding salt to the ice in a home made ice cream machine, it makes the temperature colder.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/19/15 09:02 PM
Originally Posted By: stickem'
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
So I was needing a way to get out on the pond. I bought an Old Town canoe Discovery 169 for $200 today. Not a scratch on it. Looks brand new. I know absolutely nothing about buying boats. How bad did I screw up?


Bill,
Wear a flotation device (jacket). Canoes are not known to be stable like a Jon boat is...at least till you get used to it...


Well, the canoe turned out to be a Discovery 158 but we are happy with it. Here is a pic of my son Daniel and a little visitor from Singapore checking it out. First time in a canoe.



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Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/19/15 11:02 PM
And that, my friend, is what it's all about.
Posted By: stickem' Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/20/15 01:11 AM
I would wholeheartedly have to agree!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/20/15 01:35 AM
Me too guys.

The little guy from Singapore is named Ethan. He told me he had never caught a fish but almost did once in Australia. I set him up with a little chunk of worm and prayed to God and he caught one. Here is a pic of his first fish. I told him we have a pond record book and he might catch one big enough to get his name in there. He told me he will never be in a record book his whole life. Well our puddle is new and hadn't been fished much. You should have seen his face when he caught a 17 inch CC and I told him he had the record. He was so excited he wrote the wrong date when I made him enter his catch in the record book!



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Posted By: sprkplug Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/20/15 01:42 AM
Excellent!!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/20/15 01:56 AM
It really was Sparkie. After he put his name in the book he turned to me and said "But somebody will beat my record." I said, "Maybe, all records are made to be broken but your name will always be in the book." He thought about that and decided to give me another big smile.

It was a good day for me!
Posted By: Ben Adducchio Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/20/15 02:09 AM
Pretty sweet Bill. There aren't too many things better than a kid's excitement over catching fish, smiles are priceless! I like the record book idea, I think I am going to steal it (I will give you credit).
Posted By: Omaha Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/20/15 01:19 PM
Very cool, Bill. Love the record book idea too!
Posted By: Bill D. Progress! - 09/02/15 01:42 AM
Update....

Finally got the 1000 yds or so of soil piles away from the pond and the rough grade is done. The black dirt I saved has been dropped in piles at appropriate locations for final grade work. Two inches of rain shut us down but hope to get back at it the end of this week. The 3 to 5 inch base stone is ordered for around the pond and the waterways. The erosion mat for the waterways is on site and ready to install.

Hopefully, I will be posting new pics soon showing a more complete pond and landscape! It has been two very very long years of staring at mountains of dirt and ugly landscape. Keep yer fingers crossed my friends! I would love to finally start getting some things to closure!!!!!!
Posted By: Ben Adducchio Re: Progress! - 09/02/15 01:45 AM
Awesome Bill, can't wait to see the pictures! I know the feeling on piles of dirt, have a few myself.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 09/02/15 01:56 AM
Thanks Ben!

I can't wait to actually see the pond and landscape in the winter snow without all those piles disrupting the view!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 09/02/15 02:10 AM
Harvest continues. I limited the CC harvest to 30 pounds and that is done. I figure that is enough for the first harvest in a 1/3 acre puddle. Stocking 20 CC 6 to 8 this fall.

I set the size limit on SF at 7 inches or less. That did not yield much. 50% of the SF beat the 7 inch mark so I guess I need to raise that for next year. Any thoughts on what the size limit should be for next year? I see very few SF in the 3 to 5 inch range but I see a few small schools of 2 to 3 inch ones and tons of smaller ones. I am thinking the YP, CC and SMB are doing a good job of limiting the recruits. The FHM have pretty much disappeared as expected but still seeing a few small schools.
Posted By: Bill D. FHM on the comeback - 09/16/15 12:58 AM
Well I have always been a subscriber to the thought that FHM will eventually disappear after the initial stocking and predators grow. Now I am thinking well "it depends!" My FHM population had dwindled down to almost nothing in July "as expected." Then I threw 400 sq ft of broken concrete slab into my little puddle. I now see thousands of FHM again. I am thinking adding the perfect spawning habitat along with the perfect protection for new spawn it provides made a huge difference.

I would appreciate hearing your folks thoughts on the dramatic FHM comeback I am seeing.

I suspect the pond dynamics will change once again when I stock crawfish that will want to share the same habitat.
Posted By: esshup Re: FHM on the comeback - 09/16/15 02:00 AM
Without the proper habitat for reproduction, eating and avoiding predators, fish populations won't thrive.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: FHM on the comeback - 09/16/15 11:44 PM
That is what I was thinking. I got my latest issue of PBM today and Bob L. makes a similar point. There is habitat and then there is HABITAT. I am thinking a lot of folks stock FHM and provide spawning habitat in the form of pallets, floating boards, etc. but do not provide the habitat for the spawn to survive once predators are in the mix. Is this why the FHM population disappears in most ponds? My FHM were almost extinct and now I have thousands again. I'm wondering whether my adding the broken concrete slab piles has now created HABITAT? If I got it correctly, Bob's point was we need to provide a suitable environment for every species we introduce to our pond so that all slot sizes of that species can survive and thrive.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: FHM on the comeback - 09/17/15 02:09 PM
Your experience proves Bob's point about habitat. You are sure that the new thousands of fish are FHM and not sunfish?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: FHM on the comeback - 09/17/15 02:38 PM
Definitely FHM. I scooped some out in my skim net. You can also see that signature FHM side flash everywhere.

The little SF are also very happy with the concrete slabs as well though. They moved in right away.
Posted By: anthropic Re: FHM on the comeback - 09/17/15 05:32 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
That is what I was thinking. I got my latest issue of PBM today and Bob L. makes a similar point. There is habitat and then there is HABITAT. I am thinking a lot of folks stock FHM and provide spawning habitat in the form of pallets, floating boards, etc. but do not provide the habitat for the spawn to survive once predators are in the mix. Is this why the FHM population disappears in most ponds? My FHM were almost extinct and now I have thousands again. I'm wondering whether my adding the broken concrete slab piles has now created HABITAT? If I got it correctly, Bob's point was we need to provide a suitable environment for every species we introduce to our pond so that all slot sizes of that species can survive and thrive.


After I had rip rap placed on my dam, I asked Bob about getting some more rock for habitat -- there is almost no natural rock at all on the pond site.

He said that would be good, but emphasized that I get a different size rock so that different size fish could use it for shelter. Never really thought about it that way before, but I followed his advice.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 09/18/15 07:55 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Update....

Finally got the 1000 yds or so of soil piles away from the pond and the rough grade is done. The black dirt I saved has been dropped in piles at appropriate locations for final grade work. Two inches of rain shut us down but hope to get back at it the end of this week. The 3 to 5 inch base stone is ordered for around the pond and the waterways. The erosion mat for the waterways is on site and ready to install.

Hopefully, I will be posting new pics soon showing a more complete pond and landscape! It has been two very very long years of staring at mountains of dirt and ugly landscape. Keep yer fingers crossed my friends! I would love to finally start getting some things to closure!!!!!!


Update,

Here are a few pics of what we did for erosion control. Finally, making some progress. smile We have the rip rap in the waterways where they access the pond (I think I got the idea from Snrub?). The rest of the waterways was seeded and covered with erosion mat. You can also see the rip rap we put around the shoreline on the northern half of the pond for erosion and habitat. There is heavy fabric under the stone in the waterways and on the shore. The remaining shoreline will be intermittent areas of native stone and marginal plants as that area does not see much erosion.

I let the pond go to low pool for the work. At full pool only a foot or so of the rip rap will show on the shore.







Attached File
East Waterway 2.jpg  (451 downloads)
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West Waterway 1.jpg  (454 downloads)
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Shore Erosion control.jpg  (382 downloads)
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 09/19/15 01:42 AM
Supposed to be heavy rain tonight. Hoping to see a fuller puddle in the morning. If we get it, it will be a great opportunity to assess my erosion control efforts. I also dug in all the downspouts from the house out to the waterways. I am very curious to see how they perform.
Posted By: snrub Re: Progress! - 09/19/15 03:17 AM
You definitely put some time and work into that project! Looks good. Your crayfish will thank you. That should control any potential bank erosion from wind induced waves really well.

Don't know about your area, but in ours the rock will not even be visible in a few years, unless you control the grass. My rocked banks and driveway are beginning to be covered with grass and by this time next year will not even be able to tell rock was ever there. Yet it will still be there below the grass doing the job it was intended to do.

I would have liked to maintain the rocked look. But much easier just to let nature do its thing and cover it all in grass.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 09/19/15 12:25 PM
Thanks for the input Snrub. Now that I think about it, I think I might have gotten the "rip rap in the waterway" idea from you a few months back. Did you post some pics? I expect you're right about the stone eventually getting covered. For now, it has fabric under it to minimize the plant growth. As time goes by, dirt will undoubtedly wash in on top that fabric. I use a product called Aqua Neat that seems to do a very good job of controlling vegetation around the pond. I may try to maintain the rock look with it the next few years anyway.
Posted By: snrub Re: Progress! - 09/19/15 03:07 PM
I would think with careful use of a glyphosate product, it would not be too bad to maintain the rock look. It is just going to take regular maintenance much like a lawn requires mowing.

Where we travel a lot, seems like it is easier to get a grandson to hop on a zero turn mower and mow than to do specific chores that require detail. They seem to avoid weed eaters like the plague, although buying a walk behind DR has helped a lot. I don't think I could get anyone to do the required maintenance while we are gone with what I would be willing to pay to make it work. My wife would like our rock to keep looking like rock, but I'm not willing to commit to the time it takes to do it.

I'm kind of a low maintenance type guy. I would never survive in a neighborhood that required property to look just so-so. One reason I could never see myself living in town with neighbors close.
Posted By: sprkplug Re: Progress! - 09/19/15 03:43 PM
Quite the project. Looks good!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 09/20/15 01:30 AM
Thanks guys. So much more to do I can't even see the end. As Bob O would say, "You ain't never gonna be done." Unfortunately, my vision of the end result will never be supported by my wallet!
Posted By: ewest Re: Progress! - 09/21/15 06:41 PM
About prior questions on FHM - from the archives with fixed links

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=115165#Post115165
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/22/15 01:37 AM
Thanks Ewest,

A lot of interesting info on FHM spawning. What is surprising to me is the lack of info on what folks have done to provide habitat for the new spawn, and subsequent size classes, to assure survival of the population. It seems everyone just assumes they have to disappear. It will be interesting to see if my large amount of rip rap, chunks of concrete slab, boulder piles, piles of river stone and planting marginals will impact survivability.

In case you haven't noticed, I am taking the article along this subject line in this issue of PBM to heart! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/22/15 02:50 AM
Been thinking about this quite a bit after reading the recent PBM article. Here is my train of thought.... right or wrong..... When you place a forage species in your pond, the plan is to provide forage for your desired predator species. If you provide cover for the forage, and their spawn, you have reduced the accessibility of the forage to your target fish and may make them work harder for a meal to obtain a reasonable growth. If you provide no cover for the forage, they will disappear. So what to do? I had a thought while thinking (as my old engineering mentor Fritz would say), why not just supplement the forage base by adding another forage species or three to the mix and provide what they need to survive as well? Now your predators have multiple potential dinners and the forage is self sustaining?
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/22/15 01:37 PM
BillD ""adding another forage species or three to the mix". You are talking about ecological diversity which is how most all natural systems thrive or maintain a steady state.
Posted By: ewest Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/22/15 06:32 PM
However one must note that the confirmed (by many studies)problem with most natural systems is the lack of adequate food for all species to flourish. I would suggest that without man's intervention no ponds/waters like those we are discussing is static. Changes occur over time especially with fish populations.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 10/01/15 02:42 AM
I agree!! Food for thought perhaps...A possible benefit of having a mini pond (I consider this less than 1 acre) is it is much easier to manage and adjust populations.
Posted By: Bill D. Can't catch a break! - 10/02/15 12:27 AM
After two plus years, there are no piles of dirt on our land and the final grade for planting grass is done as of today. BUT wind for the next couple of days is 20 mph with gusts to 30. Dirt devils everywhere. Coat of dust on the pond. Can't broadcast seed in these conditions and would probably just blow away anyway. I sure hope I have some topsoil left by Monday. frown
Posted By: Rainman Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/02/15 04:52 AM
Keep it watered down some, Bill! Save that topsoil!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/03/15 03:32 AM
Wish I could Rex but nothing in place to let me do that. Good news is the wind was not as strong today and only the finest dust is moving around. I hope to get it planted tomorrow or Monday. Showers predicted every couple days in the 10 day forecast.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/03/15 11:28 PM
Need some advice quick...Ok so the guy is supposed to come Monday to broadcast the seed. Some background....He prepared the seed bed with a Harley rake on the front of a Bobcat so the seed bed is covered with tire tracks. His idea is to broadcast the seed and leave it lying on top of the ground. My concern is nothing will grow in the tire tracks and very little in the areas in between with the seed left uncovered. My thought, tell him I want it drilled. This will take out the tire tracks and get the seed covered. Am I being unreasonable or do you guys think I have it wrong and his approach will work? Watering is not an option.

Thanks in advance for advice!!

Edit: How hard does a grass drill pull? Would my little JD 585 4WD (25 HP) be able to handle it?
Posted By: stickem' Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/04/15 12:42 PM
Bill,
First of all, I only have a limited amount of experience with regards to this subject. I agree with Rex to keep the topsoil damp to hold it in place. Is this guy spreading the seed with a 3 pt PTO broadcaster? In my past experience after the seed was broadcast, I dragged a piece of cattle panel behind the 4 wheeler to lightly cover the seed. I would again wet down the area after the seed was covered and continue keeping it moist if the winds prevail. Hopefully, the winds will lay down and the seed will germinate and sprout. Good luck.
Charlie
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/04/15 01:15 PM
Thanks Charlie! One of my big concern is dropping seed on top of the compacted soil in the Bobcat tire tracks and expecting it to grow. Approximately 10% of the surface area of the seed bed is tire tracks. Any thoughts on that?

They haven't brought the spreader yet so I don't know if it is a walk behind or 3 PT.
Posted By: esshup Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/04/15 01:44 PM
Drill it. I pulled a Brillion seed drill behind my 18 hp B7500 Kubota tractor. I rented the drill from a local rental place and it fit on the 3-point on the tractor.

If the seed stays on top of the soil, it will dry out fast. IIRC you have no way to water it. Many moons ago I took a landscaping class at a local college. We were told that once the grass seed gets wet and starts to germinate, if it dries out it dies. They said every time the grass seed dries out you lose 50% of the grass seed.

If it's just thrown on top of the soil and not covered 1/4" with soil, or chopped straw you will have a very patchy, thin stand of grass.

Did you do a soil test to check for nutrients/pH? Did you use a starter fertilizer?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/04/15 02:51 PM
Thanks for the response Esshup. Starter fertilizer and drill is the way I will go. $3K in seed for this so I want to give it the best chance I can.
Posted By: Bill D. Fall Stocking Plan - 10/05/15 12:04 AM
For those following along on my little Mutt Pond thread....

In a month or so I will be stocking:

20 CC 6 to 8 inch - to replace those harvested this year
25 YP 5 to 7 inch - to ladder stock last years 50 YP

Newcomer to Mutt Pond:

10 WE 6 to 8 inch - want to get them in at this size while I still can without worrying (too much) about predation. Bigger WE are a lot more expensive
Posted By: stickem' Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/05/15 12:19 AM
...sounds like a plan. Good luck, Bill...
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/05/15 12:32 AM
Thanks Charlie....ya never know what you'll catch when you toss a bobber in Mutt Pond....looking forward to when you and Pat come to visit and give my little puddle a try!....
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/05/15 12:49 AM
We ready Bill!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/05/15 12:58 AM
That would be awesome! Anytime my friend! My plate is already loaded for 2016 but really hope I can wander yer guy's way in 2017. Nothing I would like better than to check out yer puddles and take you and yers out to a big feed at the Walmart snack bar!
Posted By: Bill D. Unplanned Stocking - 10/05/15 11:30 PM
Last few weeks I have been noticing a 50 to 100 fish school of fusiform fish 5 inches or so in length. Attempts to catch them in a minnow trap have failed (I suspect they cannot fit thru the opening). They intermingle freely with the schools of FHM and small SF but make no attempt to harm them. After my last attempt to trap one today, I threw the bread bait back in the pond and they attacked it with gusto.

A few months back I submitted the attached photo to the forum for ID and the fish was tentatively identified as GSH. I am pretty sure the pros got it right.

Although I never intentionally stocked them, I have concluded that GSH are now part of the pond's forage base.

Thoughts on impact to the pond or my conclusion that GSH are becoming established in the pond based on my limited evidence?



Attached File
Minnow.jpg  (330 downloads)
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Unplanned Stocking - 10/06/15 11:41 AM
Bill D, after two crappie fishing trips on Caddo lake that is near by, I bucket stocked around 50 GSH that I had left over from the fishing trips. And like the 10,000 TFS stocked in my pond, I have never seen them since the bucket stock. But I am sure they are in there somewhere.

Tracy
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Unplanned Stocking - 10/06/15 12:35 PM
Tracy,

I suspect your right. Yours are still in there.

I was trying to figure out why I haven't seen this school earlier and I suspect I actually have but mistook them for a school of mature FHM. Now they have reached a size that makes them a lot more noticeable. My bass have noticed them as well. They seem to be their preferred target right now along with the tons of 1 to 2 inch frogs that are recently showing up as the tadpoles develop.

Bill
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 03:46 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Thanks for the response Esshup. Starter fertilizer and drill is the way I will go. $3K in seed for this so I want to give it the best chance I can.


Grass is planted!

Only 3 big "have to" projects left and they are already contracted and scheduled for next year....Asphalt the driveway, concrete the walkways and front steps and cap all the retaining walls.


After that I get to move on to "WANT TO" projects! smile
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 01:44 PM
Bill, glad ya posted about getting the seed in. Been wondering if your wife pulled ya through on this one too.
Posted By: esshup Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 02:08 PM
Bill, I'm not a fan of asphalt driveways. They need to be re-coated every few years, are prone to moving around and aren't impervious to gas/oil.
Posted By: sprkplug Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 02:22 PM
And they can get soft in the summer heat.
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 02:36 PM
Is concrete some how cheaper in other states? Do you know the cost difference between asphalt and concrete especially with a long driveway?

I heartily agree with the limitations of asphalt, but that is like saying that you wouldn't recommend anyone drive a Chevy pickup because the armored version of the Cadillac limousine has a bigger engine, plate steel armor on the sides, bullet proof glass, better impact resistance in crash testing and uses run flat tires. smile

Seriously though, what is the cost differential now that gas is cheaper per barrel? Does the asphalt price swing quickly when gas goes from $3 to $2.25 a gallon and then back up again?

IN brutal MI winters with lots of freeze thaw cycles and lots of natural clay with water drainage issues, my brother spent an arm and a leg on a big section of concrete then ran tar to the road. The tar looks great, the concrete heaved and cracked everywhere. he isn't sure which was the better option. He know he has to maintain the tar too...
Posted By: esshup Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 03:19 PM
No idea of the cost differences.

In 2010 Mom & Dad put in a driveway. Concrete. 14' wide, 5" thick (steel forms were used, not 2x4's or 2x6's), rebar and fibers in the concrete for reinforcement. 230' long with 12' radius on the apron corners. Continuous pour from start to stop.

No problems to date with cracking. Expansion joints every 20' and one down the center running the length of the drive.
Posted By: sprkplug Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 03:24 PM
If concrete is laid down correctly, cracking/heaving shouldn't be an issue. A good contractor/finisher should be able to tell you if conditions are appropriate for concrete. There's a reason interstate highways are poured with concrete.
Posted By: esshup Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 03:34 PM
They also had a different contractor put concrete between the pole barn and the garage before the driveway was poured. That contractor said he couldn't get the driveway poured and completed before winter so they had contractor #2 do the driveway. The concrete that contractor #1 poured is cracking and moving. The difference?

The first contractor screwed them. They weren't there when the work was done, and he shuttered the business doors 6 months after work was completed so there is no recourse to recoup the $$. Supposed to have been the same specs - rebar and fibers, 5" thick, etc. I ended up cutting in an expansion joint (because the concrete was expanding and moving so much that it would twist and bind the service door closed on the pole barn) and found that the contractor did NOT put any steel in the concrete, just had the fibers, he did NOT compact the dirt under the concrete and it was NOT 5" thick. The concrete varied in thickness from 2 1/2" to 4 1/2".

That slab is 40' x 50'.

Mom & Dad also had that same first contractor pour retaining walls and a concrete walkway to their walk-out basement. This Spring they had to have contractor #2 come and tear out all of that concrete and replace it. The two 40" tall x 8" thick x 50' retaining walls tipped in 3" at the top, and the 50' x 8' walkway was heaving and cracking.

No footings under the retaining walls, and the retaining walls weren't tied to the concrete walkway with rebar and there was no steel in the walkway or walls........

edit: This is a good example of what Tony is talking about i.e., good vs. poor concrete work.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 04:13 PM
I would love to do the concrete driveway instead of asphalt but the cost difference is huge. The quotes I have seen so far show concrete is 3 to 4 times the cost of asphalt. The driveway is around 4500 sq ft so that will be a big chunk of money.

As both the sidewalk and driveway are sitting on fill up to 9 feet thick, I am hesitant to do them next summer with only two winters time to settle. My concrete guy was here this morning and recommends I wait at least one more year so I may wait until 2017.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 04:21 PM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Bill, glad ya posted about getting the seed in. Been wondering if your wife pulled ya through on this one too.


She always does! smile
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 04:34 PM
thanks for sharing esshup,
I can see how prepping soil, putting appropriate rerod, fiber, expansion joints etc is so important.

When I drive Indiana highways (not often) they seem really good shape. In Grand Rapids only the downtown highways are concrete most of the connecting highways are asphalt. Both seem to break down, heave at about the same rate. I think the freeze, thaw and conditions here must be different or something. Maybe your concrete is a better grade smile

I know my drive only has basecoat of asphalt and has held up very well, partly due to compacted drive and sandy soil with good drainage, drive goes up hill with good drainage. The same company, same asphalt on clay would have broke up quite a bit by now.

You get a big patch of clay and water can't go anywhere. I think my brother could have done more with drain tile and soil prep. i don't know if the contractor put enough rerod and fiber in. Can you know if you put in enough? He did do relief cuts but the long axis of the drive doesn't have expansion material.. That would have helped as well.

I don't know if cost is 4:1 concrete to asphalt but it probably is 3:1 at least here. Then you add the extra prep you are talking about (rerod, fiber, expansion, soil compacting, steel forms) I bet we are back to 4:1 or 5:1 cost.
Posted By: sprkplug Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 05:18 PM
Concrete is more expensive than asphalt, for sure. It's also stronger, lasts longer, requires less maintenance, and deforms less than asphalt.

Both asphalt and concrete require prep work before laying down. And just like any other major project, the key to having a superb finished product lies in that prep. There are guys who move dirt, and there are guys who dig ponds...there are also guys who can finish concrete, and there are guys who are concrete contractors. Big difference.

I will say that for a residential driveway, asphalt may be all that is needed in many cases. Normal car and truck traffic is fine, the UPS truck is probably fine so long as he stays away from the edges in July/August. But if you're going to have heavy loads or lots of traffic on the drive, I would go with concrete.
Posted By: sprkplug Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 05:21 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.


As both the sidewalk and driveway are sitting on fill up to 9 feet thick, I am hesitant to do them next summer with only two winters time to settle. My concrete guy was here this morning and recommends I wait at least one more year so I may wait until 2017.


That's a wise move on the concrete guy's part. I would hate to hang my reputation on 9 feet of fill.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 06:23 PM
I agree. I have decided to wait until 2017 for both the concrete and the asphalt work. I added more stone to the driveway again this year. I have about 18 inches of stone base now (8 inches minimum recommended for asphalt). By 2017 I hope to have the best possible base for the asphalt.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 06:47 PM
Bill, havin the packed gravel plan in mind do ya think that alternating where you drive on it would help? I'm thinking instead of just two tire tracks being packed tight ya might be able to pack more surface area by alternating.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/07/15 08:31 PM
Exactly what I am doing Bob. It's 18 feet wide so I can cover most of it with one side of the truck or the other.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/08/15 06:51 PM
Bill, I should of figured.
Posted By: esshup Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/08/15 09:37 PM
Mom & Dad are on Propane, so they wanted a driveway that was sturdy enough that the fully loaded propane truck wouldn't crack it.

The fibers are mixed in at the cement plant. The rebar? It works best when in the center of the slab (I was told). So that means putting it on hi-chairs so it's in the center of the slab. Leave enough space between the pieces of rebar so that the concrete guys can walk around without stepping on the rebar. I forget how you calculate the size of the rebar - IIRC they used #4's or #5's in Mom & Dad's driveway.

I agree Tony. No matter the top material, the base has to be prepared or it will fail.
Posted By: sprkplug Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/08/15 09:44 PM
Yes, rebar is usually set on chairs. Wire mesh is typically laid right on the ground, and pulled up into the concrete as it's poured, using a hooked tool. Steel must be in the middle of the slab to be effective. We would usually use rebar for footers, or where joining concrete to other concrete, and mesh for slabs. Mesh is much easier, and less labor intensive.

Fiber mesh is added at the batch plant most often, but can be added to the truck on the jobsite, providing there is time for adequate incorporation throughout the entire load.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/09/15 12:52 AM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Bill, I should of figured.


It was my queen's idea Bob!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/09/15 01:45 AM
Not really Bob but I love to stir you up some Buddy!
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/09/15 02:23 AM
Yeah right. I believe it was her idea.



It was my queen's idea Bob!
I should of figured.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/10/15 11:38 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Thanks for the response Esshup. Starter fertilizer and drill is the way I will go. $3K in seed for this so I want to give it the best chance I can.


Update...No rain in the forecast. I put down another 200 feet of erosion mat today in the areas below the popups for the dug in downspouts from the house. We can't water everything but started watering all the areas with erosion mat installed in an attempt to get some grass established in the erosion hot spots before the fall rains begin.
Posted By: esshup Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/11/15 01:25 PM
Yep. It's looking bone dry here for the next week too. The next cold front on Tuesday is supposed to be a dry one.

We had 1/2" of rain Thurs night but it all came at once and left. We're back to being dusty already.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/13/15 12:41 AM
We got about 1/10th on Thursday. Just enough to settle the dust and apparently put a slight seal on the ground. 30 MPH winds today with gusts to 40 and no dust devils....still watering the erosion mats and no rain in the 10 day forecast
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 10/16/15 12:38 AM
Still no rain in the forecast.

I hired a guy to move one of the dug in downspout popups from behind a retaining wall (obviously a bad location) to the water way. Had to cut thru what will one day be under asphalt so I had him run schedule 40 instead of the cheap 4 inch black corrugated stuff. Came out great....he called me today and said, "Ah Bill, yesterday when we moved that downspout I hit the side of your house with the Bobcat and cracked/broke several of the stones."

Now the happier note, first he admitted it and didn't wait for me to find it, A lot of the other contractors I have worked with in the last two years would have just denied it. Second, he had already contacted a mason to make repairs. Luckily, I have extra stone that was left from the original construction so materials are not an issue. Otherwise, he would have had to buy and entire pallet to just get 3 or 4 pieces. YES! There are still honest folks out there! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/21/15 12:14 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.


Update...No rain in the forecast. I put down another 200 feet of erosion mat today in the areas below the popups for the dug in downspouts from the house. We can't water everything but started watering all the areas with erosion mat installed in an attempt to get some grass established in the erosion hot spots before the fall rains begin.


Update: The red fescue in the grass mix is coming up good in the erosion hot spots. Perennial rye is just starting to show. Bluegrass is still probably a week or two away.

Local weather man provided tonight that we are in the driest October on record. Sheesh! Can't catch a break! Good news is looks like there is a very heavy .05 inch rain on the way! frown
Posted By: esshup Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/21/15 02:34 PM
South Bend has had 0.12" since Oct. 1. Normal is around 2.4" by Oct 21.
Posted By: ewest Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/21/15 05:27 PM
We have had about an inch since July ? Normal over that time is around 7 inches.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/21/15 11:22 PM
Sounds like we are all in the same situation. Last night's "heavy rain" turned out to be .02 which brought our total for October to .03 inch.

Our fall tree order came today. Spent the afternoon planting them. Had to actually use a pick to dig the holes!
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/22/15 02:08 AM
We've had less than 3/4 inch in the last 110 days.

About to get a frog strangler over the next 3 or 4 days.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Can't catch a break! - 10/22/15 02:24 AM
I hope it comes soft and gentle spread over the 4 days. The perfect rain!
Posted By: Tbar Re: On Mutt Pond - 10/22/15 02:26 AM
Here is what one model is suggesting for this weekend.

We need rain bad but this much wouldn't be good.

Attached File
IMG_6169.jpg  (372 downloads)
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 10/22/15 02:37 AM
I guess it is how you look at that model. The model says it will suck to be in Texas but for me it says .01 inch.
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 10/22/15 03:46 AM
Last rain here was May 30..... I'll take any and all.....
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 10/22/15 11:34 AM
Yep, I'm over 100 days with no moisture. bring it on.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/22/15 11:52 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
For those following along on my little Mutt Pond thread....

In a month or so I will be stocking:

20 CC 6 to 8 inch - to replace those harvested this year
25 YP 5 to 7 inch - to ladder stock last years 50 YP

Newcomer to Mutt Pond:

10 WE 6 to 8 inch - want to get them in at this size while I still can without worrying (too much) about predation. Bigger WE are a lot more expensive


Picked the fish up today and, after acclimating, dropped them in. I am happy to report zero mortality as of this evening. I can happily report I have now stocked the pond on three different occasions and, to my knowledge, have not lost a fish. Wish I could take all the credit but I suspect 90% of the success is do to the very healthy fish and careful handling by the folks at Keystone.

BTW I screwed up and only ordered 10 CC instead of 20. May be a good thing. If I think I need more I just will make a quick run to Keystone for more in the spring.

Edit: I need to find something to stock every fall. Beautiful 45 minute drive for me to Keystone and the folks there are awesome. I actually thought my bride was going to jump in one of their trout ponds to grab one!

Thanks to Robert for backing me up when I told her they would not live thru one of our summers! smile
Posted By: esshup Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/23/15 01:57 AM
Don't worry about the trout not living through one of your summers. There's your reason to drive to Keystone every Fall.

Pick up 25+ trout and stock them. Catch them all out by the end of May/June. Repeat next year.
Posted By: 4CornersPuddle Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/23/15 02:34 AM
Bill, I'm right with Scott on this one. There is something magical about having trout in the pond, even if they won't over-summer.
I have a serious problem however. 2 years ago I put 14 BRNT and 3 RBT fingerlings in my pond. I cannot catch them any longer! They cruise by, taking pellets off the surface but will no longer eat ANYTHING with a hook and line attached. I've resorted to gluing floating pellets to fine wire dry fly hooks. The buggers refuse them and eat the pellets floating right by them.
This is all well and good except the trout are pushing 25" and on days when I don't or cannot stuff them with chow, I just bet they are eating my YP! The few I've eaten have had crawfish in their stomachs and nearly digested unrecognizable fusiform fish.
My next plan is to shoot some of them as they feed. I've always wanted to try shooting fish in a barrel....
Posted By: esshup Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/23/15 03:56 AM
heavier line and a large treble hook?

Try a pink worm is another way. http://www.steelheadnotebook.net/pinkworm.htm
Posted By: 4CornersPuddle Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 10/23/15 04:31 AM
I may be ready to resort to snagging. Ha ha.
Pink worm used for steelies might get a follow or a take. Last weekend I did get one RBT to follow a Beetle Spin with one of those Power Bait Orange Peel Trout Worms on it.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 10/24/15 01:43 AM
Originally Posted By: Dave Davidson1
Yep, I'm over 100 days with no moisture. bring it on.


We had a nice gentle .3 tonight, not great, but I will take it. Forecast is good chance Tues, Wed and Thurs this week for a little more. If we get that, it should kick start the grass seed and I will hope to see green whiskers by this time next week.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 11/13/15 11:23 PM
Originally Posted By: esshup
Don't worry about the trout not living through one of your summers. There's your reason to drive to Keystone every Fall.

Pick up 25+ trout and stock them. Catch them all out by the end of May/June. Repeat next year.


So I got an e-mail from Keystone today and they have Brook, Brown and Rainbow still available for stocking. If I was to go ahead and stock a few, which species, size and qty would you guys recommend for my little 1/3 acre+ Northern Illinois pond?

Fish available:

Brook Trout 6-8", 10"+
Brown Trout 6-8", 10"+
Rainbow Trout 6-8", 10"+

Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 11/15/15 03:04 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: esshup
Don't worry about the trout not living through one of your summers. There's your reason to drive to Keystone every Fall.

Pick up 25+ trout and stock them. Catch them all out by the end of May/June. Repeat next year.


So I got an e-mail from Keystone today and they have Brook, Brown and Rainbow still available for stocking. If I was to go ahead and stock a few, which species, size and qty would you guys recommend for my little 1/3 acre+ Northern Illinois pond?

Fish available:

Brook Trout 6-8", 10"+
Brown Trout 6-8", 10"+
Rainbow Trout 6-8", 10"+



Just to close the loop for those that may be interested in the answer to this question.

CB1, a definite pro here on the forum on raising trout, was nice enough to take time to exchange several PMs with me on this. The answer is...

Stock the rainbows, as big as you can get, and feed them pellets. They are great fun to catch either thru the ice or in open water.
Posted By: JKB Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 11/15/15 03:16 AM
Sounds like a plan.

Ya gonna do it?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 11/15/15 03:26 AM
Leaning that way. Weather and work commits make a trip to Keystone out for this coming week but if they still have them available the following week, I think so.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 11/26/15 03:01 AM
Well made the executive decision no trout this year.

1) Got clobbered by 15 inches of snow.
2) Now mud and snow to the pond makes getting there a total disaster on the new grass.
3) Fish farm does not bag fish that big and I have no way to tank haul them.
4) Expecting 1 inch of rain tomorrow

Maybe next year I will plan better!
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 11/26/15 11:28 AM
Let that be a lesson to you.
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Fall Stocking Plan - 11/26/15 12:50 PM
Dave smile u bad smile
Tracy
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/26/15 01:46 PM
Wish I had a quarter for every lesson this pond has taught me! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 12/05/15 09:36 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.

Update,

Here are a few pics of what we did for erosion control. Finally, making some progress. smile We have the rip rap in the waterways where they access the pond (I think I got the idea from Snrub?). The rest of the waterways was seeded and covered with erosion mat. You can also see the rip rap we put around the shoreline on the northern half of the pond for erosion and habitat. There is heavy fabric under the stone in the waterways and on the shore. The remaining shoreline will be intermittent areas of native stone and marginal plants as that area does not see much erosion.

I let the pond go to low pool for the work. At full pool only a foot or so of the rip rap will show on the shore.



Update...

Missed my guess a little on how much rip rap would be above the water line at full pool. Here is a pic taken today of the East Shore for comparison to the previous pic. The 6 foot wide band of rip rap came up short. Looks like I need to add another couple feet. If you look at the left side of the pic you can see a boulder on the point as reference point to how much the level changed from the previous low pool East Shore pic.

I am hoping small crawfish, tiny fingerlings and any other small forage will find refuge and thrive in all that rip rap. smile





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East Shore Full.jpg  (571 downloads)
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East Shore Low Pool.jpg  (514 downloads)
Posted By: Bill D. Mutt Pond...Thai Style - 12/06/15 01:53 AM
I told my wife I was hungry for some Thai food a few days back. She took some small BG fillets we had culled from the puddle last summer from the freezer, teamed them up with some boxelder mushrooms from the freezer and greens over Thai Jasmine rice and her secret Thai Mojo ingredients. Result...It don't get much better than this if yer looking for an Asian snack!



Attached File
BG Thai Style 1.jpg  (540 downloads)
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 12/14/15 01:05 AM
It's a little after 7 PM with temp at 59 on December 13th! Heavy rain on my little puddle. Level had dropped a few inches from full pool since the last big rain. Forecast is for record rain tonight and tomorrow. May be able to fish from the deck on the house on Tuesday! frown
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Progress! - 12/14/15 11:32 AM
Is the rain over? How much?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 12/14/15 01:07 PM
Still raining. 2.1 inches overnight. Hopefully, we won't get much more. Pond is full full.
Posted By: Zslow6 Re: Progress! - 12/15/15 03:37 PM
Bill, Great thread! Im stuck dealing with a future industrial park pond we have in Montgomery IL and wish I could have it in my back yard to spend the time on it you do! Im sure all this work will be WELL worth it! Also get my fish from keystone and they have been great, glad to hear you have had the same luck. Have you considered adding any pike/musky to the mix? I just added a couple TM to help with my lack of culling (no clue if it will work).

On a side note. I am an excavating contractor and I noticed you have about 18" of stone in your driveway. Im guessing that the 9' of fill is clay? Im not sure how long your driveway is but one thing I would recommend is (if its practical) is to try and place some perforated drain pipe below the stone. A lot of times what happens the rain water from your lawn will drain to the clay (if your clay subgrade is below your topsoil) and will hold there between the clay/stone sub-base and on years like this (real wet/warm early winter) and when it freezes will start to crack your driveway. May cost a bit now but could save a lot in the long run.

Sorry for the rant just run into this issue a lot in industrial buildings but usually they are re-surfacing due to heavy truck traffic so its not as important.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/16/15 02:01 AM
Z6,

I am always looking for inputs. Montgomery is not that far from us. We're near Belvidere. Yeah, the folks at Keystone are great. I wish they had pellet trained fish though.

Here is a picture of the driveway. I was standing on the road in front of the house when I took it. For perspective, the garage floor is 9 feet above the original grade. The drive is about 160 feet long and slopes up gradually from the road to the house. The fill for the drive and the yard was provided by digging the pond. It's a mix of gravel, loam and some clay. The yard has a topcoat of a few inches of good topsoil I scrapped from the pond site and reserved for covering the fill. It doesn't show that well but the drive is pretty much the same grade as the yard. Any thoughts on how to improve things before putting down the asphalt are appreciated!

Just curious..do you dig ponds? Lots of folks here on the forum are always asking for recommendations for pond builders and they are hard to find by me.



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Driveway.jpg  (545 downloads)
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/16/15 03:31 AM
"Just curious..do you dig ponds? Lots of folks here on the forum are always asking for recommendations for pond builders and they are hard to find by me." That is the first thing I thought when I read he is a dirt guy. Been two very recent posts for N IN.
Bill, that is a real nice lookin house. It has a few more peaks than my trailer but other than that would say about the same level of class. Cecil, Bill C and Scott have all been to my place. Give them a chance ta change their pants and then ask em how nice it is.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/16/15 03:40 AM
Bob,

Wife says she has the guest room all ready for yer visit next summer if you are lookin for a road trip!

P.S. Please bring toilet paper, these cobs are rubbing me raw!
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/16/15 03:14 PM
That is a great invitation and I will very much consider it. When will her unmarried sister be visiting?
What's toilet paper?
Posted By: Zslow6 Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/16/15 04:52 PM
Beautiful home! Even if the stone is level with the topsoil the problem is it might still drain to dirt below the stone. It looks like your yard does slope away from the drive so you might be ok. Its not a HUGE deal...i only brought it up because my mind works that way haha!

In regards to digging ponds...we do but usually only for industrial parks. We are a union contractor so we cant really compete with the other guys. I dont get to spend as much time on here as id like (so much information) so i may not be able to give much advice/opinions as other people. One thing i noticed is in our line of work when excavating a pond we are using that material to build a building pad. Most people on here are adding a pond and dont have any where for the excavated material to go so they build berms around the pond. I will say i always prefer a natural cut pond to a berm pond...to many things to worry about in regards to leaks or dams breaking.

Side note...in a private pond are safety shelfs required? In most cases for industrial/office parks they are...was kind of curious about that.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/17/15 02:42 AM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
...What's toilet paper?


It kinda looks like a YP egg ribbon. It grows from yer neighbor's trees, usually on Halloween night. It's kinda like gathering mushrooms. Get out and gather it quick thou cause rain really screws it up.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/17/15 03:11 AM
I'll start payin attention.
My plan for Mutt Pond this spring is to fortify the food chain. The broken concrete, rip rap and boulder piles are now in place.

Plan is to stock paper shell craws as they are a preferred forage for my WE, SMB and YP. My concern is this will divert the attention of these predators from the PS and BG spawn. Might end up with an overpopulation issue there but I think I will take the risk.(We love to eat SF! smile )

I will also keep working on getting desirable vegetation in place and, if successful, will be stocking scuds and grass shrimp.

Any thoughts and suggestions would be appreciated.
If the PS and BG start to overpopulate, they are easily trapped, or you can try throwing HSB in there.
A few HSB is in the spring 2017 stocking plan...along with HBC instead of CC and maybe a few HBG just because I have become a big fan of them. smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 01/09/16 12:58 AM
Dinner tonight was CC fillets from the CC harvest last summer from the pond. Cleaned per Snakebite's recommendations. I have to say, I have always loved CC for the table but these are the absolute best I've ever had. Grain based pellet fed for the most part and cleaned to eliminate any strong "muddy or fishy" tasting sections. Awesome! Snakebite, I salute you sir!

In the fall of 2015, I only stocked 10 new CC bringing the total in the pond to 15 for 2016 harvest. After tonight's dinner, I am adjusting the spring 2016 stocking plan to add another 20 in the 10 to 12 inch size for the fall 2016 harvest cause I know you can always freeze the fillets to eat on a cold night in January! smile
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
My plan for Mutt Pond this spring is to fortify the food chain. The broken concrete, rip rap and boulder piles are now in place.

Plan is to stock paper shell craws as they are a preferred forage for my WE, SMB and YP. My concern is this will divert the attention of these predators from the PS and BG spawn. Might end up with an overpopulation issue there ....


For anyone that might be following along as my pond evolves, a lot of good discussion on stocking craws in both my pond and other ponds can be found here:

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=434555#Post434555

IMHO this is a good illustration that introducing a new forage species is not as easy as it first may appear...It Depends!

Another thing I am working on is raising forage in aquariums. A lot of info on that on this thread.

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=435166&page=1

and more aquarium info here....

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=435191#Post435191

Bill D.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 02/13/16 02:07 AM
Update....As part of my effort to improve the food chain, I realize I must continue my efforts to improve vegetation habitat in the pond. A couple of forum members have offered to send me some starts of red tip eel grass. I will try getting this going in the pond this spring. Although I THINK I might have a small start of American Pondweed in the pond already, I am still looking for a source for more.

I will be ordering some scuds this week. Plan will be to populate a 20 gallon aquarium in the basement for spring stocking to the pond. The balance of this order will be dropped thru the hole in the ice created by the winter diffuser...hope a few of those bugs make it! smile

UpdateÖ.

The Scuds arrived safely today. Must have been a couple thousand of them. They came in a breather bag which Iíd heard of but never seen. No need to add O2 to the bag. Pretty cool!

I put probably 200 in the 20 G tank and another 40 or 50 in a 5.5 G tank. The rest I put in the pond where they disappeared immediately into the rip rap.


Hereís a pic of my 20 G scud tank.



And hereís a pic of a few of the scuds getting busy chowing down on leaves.








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Scuds in 20 G.jpg  (466 downloads)
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Scuds Chow Time.jpg  (448 downloads)
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 02/29/16 04:28 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Supposed to be heavy rain tonight. Hoping to see a fuller puddle in the morning. If we get it, it will be a great opportunity to assess my erosion control efforts. I also dug in all the downspouts from the house out to the waterways. I am very curious to see how they perform.


Update...

What a difference a year makes! This time last year when the snow melted and the ice went out, the pond had about 12 inch visibility and appeared muddy. After all the erosion control efforts last summer, this year after snow melt and ice out, visibility is easily 5 feet! Wish I had a polarizing lens but maybe you can get the idea from this pic...





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Clear water 022916.jpg  (416 downloads)
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: Progress! - 02/29/16 04:55 PM
Bill, TurtleMountain,
Any updates on the Scuds? Growing, eating? etc?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 02/29/16 05:28 PM
Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
Bill, TurtleMountain,
Any updates on the Scuds? Growing, eating? etc?


Mine are doing great! Some have already molted. All are spawning it seems. They are eating an incredible number of maple leaves. They reduce them down to dang near nothing. I am hooked on these little guys. I consider them perfect forage to add to a pond. They turn detritus material into high protein fish snacks instead of muck!
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Progress! - 02/29/16 05:45 PM
Billy Bub, good to see what progress your puddle(actually you) is makin. Also a big thanks on the scud info. I never considered the lower ranks of forage but now feel compelled to develop such lower level feed. Now this kills me but....THANKS!! Last two summers I been micro fishin and am developing a new respect for the little things. No, no, no, it has nothing to be with my personal anatomy.
I will be buggin (pun intended for Charlies benefit)you on having working aquariums.
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: Progress! - 02/29/16 06:22 PM
Bill, I assume you are putting colored maple leaves in (ones that have lain on the ground for a while?) Are they brittle and falling in pieces or do you put the whole leaf in?

I'm considering putting a few in a tank to watch but I don't have an aquarium setup so once my water gets tannin or debris I can't easily separate the little guys out to do a water exchange.

A fish tank at the kids school has 6" goldfish in it, I'd love to bring some to school for kids to watch. But maybe goldfish would snap them up?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 02/29/16 10:25 PM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Billy Bub, good to see what progress your puddle(actually you) is makin. Also a big thanks on the scud info. I never considered the lower ranks of forage but now feel compelled to develop such lower level feed. Now this kills me but....THANKS!! Last two summers I been micro fishin and am developing a new respect for the little things. No, no, no, it has nothing to be with my personal anatomy.
I will be buggin (pun intended for Charlies benefit)you on having working aquariums.


Bob, I gotta give credit to Turtlemtn for drawing my focus on these little critters by starting a thread about them. I hope they do well in the tanks so I have some more to throw in the pond. Maybe this spring we can do a little "horse" trading.... smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 02/29/16 10:26 PM
Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
Bill, I assume you are putting colored maple leaves in (ones that have lain on the ground for a while?) Are they brittle and falling in pieces or do you put the whole leaf in?

I'm considering putting a few in a tank to watch but I don't have an aquarium setup so once my water gets tannin or debris I can't easily separate the little guys out to do a water exchange.

A fish tank at the kids school has 6" goldfish in it, I'd love to bring some to school for kids to watch. But maybe goldfish would snap them up?


CC,

Iím feeding mine leaves as I wanted to assess how effective these guys would be as leaf/decaying vegetation ďpredatorsĒ for my pond. I just picked up brown dry leaves out side and presoaked them, with frequent water changes, in a bucket until most of the tannins were out. I then left the leaves in water and just grab a few when I need some more as the scuds consume the ones in the tanks.

IMO you donít need to feed them leaves. From what Iíve read, you can go to a pet shop and get algae wafers, surfinia flakes or any cheap flake food. They will eat lots of different things. I think Turtlemtn mentioned he is feeding his FA from his pond among other things. BTW RAH has some in aquariums as well. Iím not sure what he is feeding his.

Scuds like the dark so keep that in mind. IMO give them some cover and donít set their tank in bright sunlight.

P.S. I suspect the goldfish would be very happy that you brought him tasty ďplaymates!Ē IMO a simple goldfish bowl and half a dozen scuds would work for school. No aeration required for scuds. If you change maybe 20% of the water every week or so the should be fine.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 03/02/16 01:56 AM
Kind of an interesting observation today. When the scuds molt they move under cover, similar to crayfish. I suspect they do that for protection while the new "shell" hardens. The other scuds find and eat the old "shell."
Posted By: ewest Re: Progress! - 03/02/16 06:04 PM
I bet others eat them as well - good calcium source.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 03/03/16 01:48 AM
Originally Posted By: ewest
I bet others eat them as well - good calcium source.


Thanks for the input. I totally agree. Even the discarded shell of a scud has value. The literature on scuds I've been able to find usually starts out with something like "scuds are an indicator of a healthy BOW." If there is a downside to stocking scuds, I have yet to find it. Rare to find something to stock that doesn't have potential "cons" associated with it. Guess I'll find out, if I'm able to get a population established that is.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Progress! - 03/03/16 02:23 PM
Bill C aka Dr Perca
Bill D aka Dr Scud
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Progress! - 03/04/16 12:53 AM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Bill C aka Dr Perca
Bill D aka Dr Scud


LOL!

I'm a long long long way from being a pro on anything having to do with a pond! Definitely, not in the Doc category like Doc Cody!

I'm just learning what I can to maybe make my little puddle just a little bit better and having fun with it as I make the journey...just like you!
I stocked some new inhabitants to the pond today in an effort to fortify the forage base. As there are currently thousands of minnows and tiny SFs everywhere in the shallows, I thought this might be a good time to introduce two new species with the existing guys to act as distractions for the newbies.

First pic is a Spotfin Shiner. I apologize for the photo but it wouldnít hold still! The guy still owes me a partial order so I will try to get a better photo next time and, hopefully, have some aquarium space available by then to keep a couple for a few days.

The second photo are some Bluntnose Minnows. I did put a few of these in an aquarium and will post better photos later.

Both species of fish were mostly in the 3 in+ size so I am hopeful they will spawn this year.

Spotfin Shiner




Bluntnose Minnow




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Spotfin.JPG  (59 downloads)
Bill D,
You sound like you are forage rich...what all preds do you have in your BOW right now? I know you've mentioned CC in the past...but I don't recall what all you have stocked. Do you plan on stocking any more preds in addition to the ones you already have?
Charlie
Originally Posted By: stickem'
Bill D,
You sound like you are forage rich...what all preds do you have in your BOW right now? I know you've mentioned CC in the past...but I don't recall what all you have stocked. Do you plan on stocking any more preds in addition to the ones you already have?
Charlie


Thanks for the interest Charlie!

Primary predators in our pond are SMB, WE, YP and a couple 3 or 4 LMB (I will remove them if I catch them). I donít really count the CC as significant predators as they get pellet fed and removed at 3 pounds or less. And, of course, as this is Mutt Pond, there are 1 of a few other fish in there as novelty catches but no major predators.

Forage before today was mostly BG, PS, FHM, and surprisingly GSH. Hopefully, I can add SFS and BNM to the list. I will also be stocking Papershell Crawfish (PSC) in June now that the broken concrete and rip rap are in place. If Iím successful at getting more vegetation going, I hope to add local scuds and grass shrimp in the future.

My pond is very fertile so Iím trying to take advantage of that by building as strong and as diverse a forage base as I can. I try to research each species Iím going to stock and put habitat in place to try to assure their best chance of thriving before I stock them. I have not seen any threads taking the approach of trying to maximize the diversity of forage species (probably missed it) so Iím guessing itís not a great strategy but itís the one Iím going with. In my defense, Mutt Pond is all about diversity and never knowing what's going to be on the end of that line. If nothing else, I can report back so others can learn from the effort.

Originally Posted By: Bill D.
....The second photo are some Bluntnose Minnows. I did put a few of these in an aquarium .....


Update...

The BNM I kept for the aquarium are doing well. I've been feeding them hydrated 3 mm Skretting pellets. In case anybody is interested, adult BNM have sufficient mouth gap to eat this size pellet in one bite. Might want to keep this in mind if you have BNM in your pond and are trying to pellet feed small BG, etc.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/08/16 01:36 AM
I ordered 250 papershell crawfish, PSC, 2 inch size for June delivery. My pond varies from .4 to .75 acres, depending on the watertable. They will be going into rip rap and broken concrete slab for cover. I've not been able to find much researching the net and forum on what the right number of crawfish is to stock for forage so I'm taking a guess. At least I can post how it worked out in a year or 3. smile If anybody has experience with what the right stocking rate is, please let me know as I still have time to adjust the order.

Thanks,

Bill
Posted By: ewest Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/08/16 01:40 AM
What is in the pond ?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/08/16 01:57 AM
Originally Posted By: ewest
What is in the pond ?


Thanks for the reply!

Can't say for sure but what was stocked since 2014 is...

11 6 to 8 WE 2015
10 6 to 8 SMB 2014
100 5 to 7 YP ...75 in 2014 and 25 2015
3 or 4 LMB biggest probably 14 to 15 by now (to be removed I hope)
100 PS at 2 to 3 in 2014
100 BG 5 to 6 in 2014
About 16 CC with 10 currently about 6 in and the others 2+ lbs
FHM still a few schools hanging in there
GSH a few but seem to be increasing
SFS just stocked
BNM just stocked

Goal for the PSC is FA control as well as forage

Posted By: Bill Cody Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/09/16 02:21 PM
You have quite a few predators (SMB,LMB,WE,CC, & YP) for placing only 250 papershells in your pond. I catch YP with adult papershell in them. Every small fish in your pond will eat crayfish less than 1" long. IMO Survival will be dependent on how much cover you have available and how many you stock. For an existing pond with those predators capable of reproducing, I would have stocked closer to 2500 not 250. I stocked 300 PSC in a 1/3 acre minnow only pond and had good reproduction and recruitment. If you are really interested in providing crayfish as a constant forage food try growing them in a small 0.1 ac pond or pool with minnows as polyculture. Then transfer the surplus.

For readers here is a link to the page with some of BillD's shoreline see: West Waterway 1.jpg
http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=443300&page=6

Your rock lined shoreline with large concrete pieces may be enough cover for the crayfish to maintain broodstock, although with those crayfish loving predators (bass &CC) I would not expect numerous crayfish to always be present to serve as a good food source. With reproducing bass present it is very difficult to maintain minnows and small forage foods without a weedy pond. I think your predator types will eat crayfish more readily than small fish depending on abundance and encounter rate.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/09/16 02:58 PM
Thanks for the info Bill. 2500 PSC is way beyond the budget I have for them. I'd guess, with shipping, that would be $1500+. I will bump the order to 500 though and cross my fingers. I'll also try to add a few more areas of large rip rap or boulders before June. The plan is to get more vegetation going this year as well.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/09/16 09:10 PM
As soon as the weather starts to warm up, I'll take a shot at removing as many of the LMB and larger CC as I can. I'm thinking that will also help my chances of getting the PSC established, at least in brood stock numbers.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/09/16 11:54 PM
Thin the bass and CC heavily you can always allow the population to recover. LMB are prolific and SMB will definitely recruit in our pond.

I don't know of any research studies but papershells esp YOY crayfish since they are slow movers are probably as vulnerable to predation as FHM.

Since you have those species of predators I would be very surprised to see the BNM recruit any young into your pond.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/10/16 01:45 AM
Thanks Bill. I'll work to get the large CC and all the LMB out. Do you think the 6 to 8 inch CC are a big problem (they were closer to 6)? The biggest SMB is probably 12 inch that I've seen. Is that a problem?

The YP have either spawned or will soon so their new spawn will be the first to run the gauntlet of predators. PS next then BG. Somewhere in there the GSH, SFS, FHM and BNM will also start. Not sure the SMB will spawn and hope to get the LMB out. Throwing is some PSC....It definitely promises to be an interesting summer with all the variables going on!
Posted By: esshup Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/10/16 01:50 AM
Bill D, do what you can to get the LMB out of there before they spawn. If they pull off a spawn, your level of difficulty has risen 1,000 fold.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/11/16 12:03 AM
I'm worried some about that. One question I have though is if my predator base is such that it will prevent PSC from thriving and BNM from recruitment, why wouldn't the same predators prevent significant recruitment from 1 or 2 pairs of LMB? Are LMB spawn better at avoiding predation than other species?

I also left out another potential forage/variable from my previous summary. Approximately half the pond has a 6 foot wide rip rap band around it that is packed full of 2 to 3 inch tadpoles. Are tadpoles/small frogs a significant forage?
Posted By: esshup Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/11/16 06:27 PM
Male LMB guard the fry school until they are about 3/4"-1" in length.....
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/11/16 07:43 PM
LMB are prolific spawners and since they protect the YOY 'fingerling" bass until they are about 1" a high percentage of them survive. A small pond with 50-250 1" bass quickly become a significant predator force eating everything that fits in their mouth. Once those small bass get chased they become pretty skittish. Crayfish and minnows are generally easier to catch for larger LMB than fingerling bass. Larger bass do eat some small bass especially when other items are scarce. Try using FHM or larger creek minnows 2ft-5ft under a slender bobber to catch your bass. Your bass in IL area will probably be spawning in 2-3 wks - get busy collecting bait and then fishing. Beginning LMB nest building starts at 59-60F and spawn is around 62F; so monitor your water temps for timing. Female bass should be hungry now developing eggs so you should be able to catch them if you are a decent angler. Remember those larger add stock bass have been caught previously so finesse fishing would be wise.

Count on each bass to eat 300 upto 500 small fish per year so all those items are removed from the system. Generally they eat the most vulnerable stuff first. Often tadpoles are not eaten until most other good stuff is abscent.

Those small CC of 6"-8" wont be eating many fish-crayfish until the CC are larger 15"-18".
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/11/16 11:19 PM
Thanks for the info guys!

Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
.....you should be able to catch them if you are a decent angler. .....


Dang Bill! Nothing like piling on the pressure! grin Water is overflowing the shore and low visibility right now. Should be interesting trying to catch 3 or 4 fish out of the entire pond in those conditions. Good news is forecast is for less wind this week and warming temps. Maybe I can spot them to get an idea where they're hanging out.

The bait shop at the State Park near me has shiners. I'll swing by and pick some up and get busy chasing those LMB.
Posted By: Dan123 Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/12/16 03:50 AM
OK Bill, As we discussed the Fedex guy will drop off the 3 , 6' Gators and those 16 Cottonmouths you wanted. I was distracted, and missed the number of Coral snakes you said you needed so I will have to ship those up with that order of Eastern Diamondbacks. Dan
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/12/16 10:15 PM
Dang it Dan! I think you musta misunderstood. I said I thought it is cool you have some swamp land NOT that I wanted to build a swamp! grin

No problem though. Bob O is still in Florida so I'll just have FEDEX drop those critters in his pond. He loves that Florida "wild life!" grin
Posted By: JKB Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/13/16 12:30 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Dang it Dan! I think you musta misunderstood. I said I thought it is cool you have some swamp land NOT that I wanted to build a swamp! grin

No problem though. Bob O is still in Florida so I'll just have FEDEX drop those critters in his pond. He loves that Florida "wild life!" grin


Drop a couple of those speedos off, so he feels like at home laugh wink
Posted By: Dan123 Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/13/16 12:31 AM
Dang, another misunderstanding. I suppose this puts the kibosh on the Green Swamp Monster we had all ready for you? Dan, p/s, That thing is some sort of stinky!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/15/16 01:23 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Thanks for the info guys!

Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
.....you should be able to catch them if you are a decent angler. .....


Dang Bill! Nothing like piling on the pressure! grin Water is overflowing the shore and low visibility right now. Should be interesting trying to catch 3 or 4 fish out of the entire pond in those conditions. Good news is forecast is for less wind this week and warming temps. Maybe I can spot them to get an idea where they're hanging out.

The bait shop at the State Park near me has shiners. I'll swing by and pick some up and get busy chasing those LMB.


Update.... I talked to my bride and we have decided to leave the LMB. I went back and reviewed my first post on this thread and realized, to be true to the charter, the goal is diversity and never knowing what you will catch and harvest. Although more than 1 LMB was not originally considered, bucket stocked LMB happen to many folks and it is what it is. We may end up with a traditional LMB, SF, CC pond but that is ok as well. It will be interesting to watch the possible transition and, hopefully, others can learn from the experiment and our attempt to maintain the diversity.

Bill D.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/15/16 01:37 AM
Definitely your pond as with all ponds they will evolve. What most of don't realize is ponds are constantly changing minute by minute. We just are not able to see all of the changes most of them chemical and microscopic.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/15/16 01:50 AM
Dogged again!!
Posted By: Dan123 Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/15/16 02:26 AM
Bob-O, I apologize to you sir. As once again I misunderstood and misshipped that Burmese Python to Cecil instead of you. Hope he does not mind as it is a tad under 14' and of course still alive. Best Wishes, Dan
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/16/16 11:13 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Definitely your pond as with all ponds they will evolve. What most of don't realize is ponds are constantly changing minute by minute. We just are not able to see all of the changes most of them chemical and microscopic.


Update...My bride said she wanted fish for dinner so we hit the pond. Several gills and 2 LMB about 13 to 14 inches. The fish were in great shape, IMO, for just coming off winter. Nice and fat. One LMB was a female full of eggs so 1 spawn less to have to try and manage around. smile

The LMB were not targeted so I figure we were true to the charter and just harvested what came along.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/17/16 01:41 PM
Two of your maybe only 3 LMB on the first outing?. Great. What did you manage to catch them on? You think you only have one LMB remaining?
Posted By: Dan123 Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/17/16 06:56 PM
He's turning Pro, after watching Clunn on the St. Johns.!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/18/16 01:40 AM
Originally Posted By: Dan123
He's turning Pro, after watching Clunn on the St. Johns.!


Yep! Taking the cork and cane pole on the road! grin
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/18/16 01:44 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Two of your maybe only 3 LMB on the first outing?. Great. What did you manage to catch them on? You think you only have one LMB remaining?


Caught one on a big FHM and the other on a 3+ inch GSH; both under a cork. I think there are at least two left that I've been able to see. Have to look close as there are SMB swimming around as well.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 04/24/16 02:10 AM
Interesting development. I was watching a King Fisher catch minnows at the pond. For background info...It comes every morning and evening. It always perches on the roof of the pump house to scope out the situation. It is about 75% successful hunting, as far as I can tell, as it returns to the roof to beat the minnow to submission before swallowing. It caught a fish way to big to swallow. I laughed and said "I don't think so!" I watched as it just dropped it and let it roll down the roof to the ground. I walked over and it was a 5 to 6 inch GSH that was flopping around and totally unharmed, as far as I could tell, so I tossed it back to the pond. I didn't know I had GSH that large.

I have no predators capable of eating a GSH that big in my pond and I know they will get a lot bigger. Maybe I should stop removing LMB when I catch them?
Posted By: Bill D. Time to feed the fish - 05/08/16 02:22 AM
Water temp was at 60 last evening so I threw a couple of handfuls of pellets to see if I had any takers. Only a couple CC showed up. Tried it again tonight and the CC were hitting pellets like crazy and a few BG (not pellet trained) showed up; even the little newbie CC I stocked last fall were there (I think CC are born pellet trained! smile ). Looks like it's time to crank it up on the feeding for me. Hard to beat the taste of a CC fillet that was raised on grain based pellets!

Edit: There is no doubt in my mind that CC are the "smartest" fish in the pond. Did the ones last night communicate with the others in someway that made all show up tonight?
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Time to feed the fish - 05/08/16 03:43 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Water temp was at 60 last evening so I threw a couple of handfuls of pellets to see if I had any takers. Only a couple CC showed up. Tried it again tonight and the CC were hitting pellets like crazy and a few BG (not pellet trained) showed up; even the little newbie CC I stocked last fall were there (I think CC are born pellet trained! smile ). Looks like it's time to crank it up on the feeding for me. Hard to beat the taste of a CC fillet that was raised on grain based pellets!

Edit: There is no doubt in my mind that CC are the "smartest" fish in the pond. Did the ones last night communicate with the others in someway that made all show up tonight?

Funny thing Bill my cc and BC don't come to the top when the feeder goes off and there is 250 of them in there. Only CNBG and LMB , the bass learned it on their own
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Time to feed the fish - 05/08/16 11:08 PM
Originally Posted By: Pat Williamson
Funny thing Bill my cc and BC don't come to the top when the feeder goes off and there is 250 of them in there. Only CNBG and LMB , the bass learned it on their own


That's strange Pat. Have you ever seen or caught one since you stocked them?
Posted By: Bill D. Time to feed the fish - 05/08/16 11:11 PM
When I was feeding pellets tonight I had a pleasant surprise or two. A school of BNM showed up so at least I know the ones I stocked several weeks ago are still hanging in there. A bigger surprise though was a school of 4 to 5 inch YP showed up and were hammering pellets like pros! I now have confirmation that I did have at least a small YP spawn in 2015! smile Is it unusual that an entire school of YP eat pellets with no effort to actually train them?
Posted By: esshup Re: Time to feed the fish - 05/09/16 01:42 AM
I had a friend, his wife and his 5 yr. old son over this evening to fish. They caught some LMB, and some YP that he thought were bass. laugh

When the feeder went off, the YP, LMB, SMB, HSB BG and maybe a CC or two were up at the Optimal.
Posted By: snrub Re: Time to feed the fish - 05/09/16 03:02 AM
Originally Posted By: Pat Williamson
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Water temp was at 60 last evening so I threw a couple of handfuls of pellets to see if I had any takers. Only a couple CC showed up. Tried it again tonight and the CC were hitting pellets like crazy and a few BG (not pellet trained) showed up; even the little newbie CC I stocked last fall were there (I think CC are born pellet trained! smile ). Looks like it's time to crank it up on the feeding for me. Hard to beat the taste of a CC fillet that was raised on grain based pellets!

Edit: There is no doubt in my mind that CC are the "smartest" fish in the pond. Did the ones last night communicate with the others in someway that made all show up tonight?

Funny thing Bill my cc and BC don't come to the top when the feeder goes off and there is 250 of them in there. Only CNBG and LMB , the bass learned it on their own


The first year for my CC I never saw any hit the surface. When feeding some sinking pellets if I held very still and waited I could catch a glimpse of one once in a while near shore on the bottom. Year two by the end of the year I was seeing a lot of them hitting pellets on the surface but some swimming frantically along the bottom wondering where the food was. Now this third year I see a lot of 2-3# eating off the surface. I've harvested about a third of the population (originally stocked 100 per acre).

Although I don't have any right now, I like to mix in about 10% of a sinking catfish pellet, just to help get some of the fish feeding that are not prone to come to the surface, hoping if they get some feed off the bottom they will learn to eat on the surface. By using only 10% I still get the feedback of the floating feed to know the fish are actively feeding. The CC will stir the bottom up some though with sinking food, if that is a problem. I kind of like them doing that, but my sediment settles back out quickly so it does not cause turbidity.
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Time to feed the fish - 05/09/16 03:52 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: Pat Williamson
Funny thing Bill my cc and BC don't come to the top when the feeder goes off and there is 250 of them in there. Only CNBG and LMB , the bass learned it on their own


That's strange Pat. Have you ever seen or caught one since you stocked them?


I do catch some on the jigs intended for the BCP . The CC was full of eggs and about 15-16" . They about to just be of eating size
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Time to feed the fish - 05/09/16 03:54 AM

Originally Posted By: snrub
Originally Posted By: Pat Williamson
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Water temp was at 60 last evening so I threw a couple of handfuls of pellets to see if I had any takers. Only a couple CC showed up. Tried it again tonight and the CC were hitting pellets like crazy and a few BG (not pellet trained) showed up; even the little newbie CC I stocked last fall were there (I think CC are born pellet trained! smile ). Looks like it's time to crank it up on the feeding for me. Hard to beat the taste of a CC fillet that was raised on grain based pellets!

Edit: There is no doubt in my mind that CC are the "smartest" fish in the pond. Did the ones last night communicate with the others in someway that made all show up tonight?

Funny thing Bill my cc and BC don't come to the top when the feeder goes off and there is 250 of them in there. Only CNBG and LMB , the bass learned it on their own


The first year for my CC I never saw any hit the surface. When feeding some sinking pellets if I held very still and waited I could catch a glimpse of one once in a while near shore on the bottom. Year two by the end of the year I was seeing a lot of them hitting pellets on the surface but some swimming frantically along the bottom wondering where the food was. Now this third year I see a lot of 2-3# eating off the surface. I've harvested about a third of the population (originally stocked 100 per acre).

Although I don't have any right now, I like to mix in about 10% of a sinking catfish pellet, just to help get some of the fish feeding that are not prone to come to the surface, hoping if they get some feed off the bottom they will learn to eat on the surface. By using only 10% I still get the feedback of the floating feed to know the fish are actively feeding. The CC will stir the bottom up some though with sinking food, if that is a problem. I kind of like them doing that, but my sediment settles back out quickly so it does not cause turbidity.
they may be scrounging around on the bottom, but who knows....
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: stickem'
Bill D,
You sound like you are forage rich...what all preds do you have in your BOW right now? I know you've mentioned CC in the past...but I don't recall what all you have stocked. Do you plan on stocking any more preds in addition to the ones you already have?
Charlie


Thanks for the interest Charlie!

Primary predators in our pond are SMB, WE, YP and a couple 3 or 4 LMB (I will remove them if I catch them). I donít really count the CC as significant predators as they get pellet fed and removed at 3 pounds or less. And, of course, as this is Mutt Pond, there are 1 of a few other fish in there as novelty catches but no major predators.

Forage before today was mostly BG, PS, FHM, and surprisingly GSH. Hopefully, I can add SFS and BNM to the list. I will also be stocking Papershell Crawfish (PSC) in June now that the broken concrete and rip rap are in place. If Iím successful at getting more vegetation going, I hope to add local scuds and grass shrimp in the future.

My pond is very fertile so Iím trying to take advantage of that by building as strong and as diverse a forage base as I can. I try to research each species Iím going to stock and put habitat in place to try to assure their best chance of thriving before I stock them. I have not seen any threads taking the approach of trying to maximize the diversity of forage species (probably missed it) so Iím guessing itís not a great strategy but itís the one Iím going with. In my defense, Mutt Pond is all about diversity and never knowing what's going to be on the end of that line. If nothing else, I can report back so others can learn from the effort.



I got the rest of my SFS order today. Very nice fish. The pond level is pretty high still so I stocked them gently(let them swim out of the bag on their own) into a shallow area with a lot of submerged grass to give them a chance to acclimate a little before having to deal with the predators. Seemed to work fairly well as they hung out in that same area for an hour or so before moving off.

Besides BNM and SFS, I can also get several other species from the same source including Johnny Darters, Blackstripe Topminnow, Central Mudminnow, Emerald Shiner, Redfin Shiner, Scarlet Shiner and a bunch of others. Anybody know how any of these will do in a pond?
Your ability to achieve diversity in fauna will be enhanced by diversity in flora, and both will be enhanced by an otherwise diverse environment. Each species will seek out its own niche. The surest way of learning how they will do is to try them. I like your sense of adventure. Do you know anyone I can get grass shrimp (P. kadiakensis) from?
Originally Posted By: Turtlemtn
.... Do you know anyone I can get grass shrimp (P. kadiakensis) from?


I recently mentioned grass shrimp to the guy that supplied my SFS and BNM. Sounded like he might be able to supply grass shrimp as well. I'll check with him and report back.
Posted By: Bill D. Observations from Mutt Pond - 05/23/16 02:05 AM
It was an interesting day today. I was out planting Redbuds and Magnolias for Nattha (my bride). smile

Driving by the pond on the tractor I saw a snapper about 8 to 10 inches heading for deep water. I saw it once last year so I guess it survived. I love turtle meat so, if I catch it, I will be learning how to clean one.

The BG have been on the nest for a three or four days now. Interesting that I saw a female ready to burst eating pellets tonight. Guess that is what is meant by rolling spawn...Pond is in full bloom. Visibility has dropped to 20 inches or so. Perfect timing for the BG spawn.

Spotted a water arum in about 2 feet of water so I have at least one that made it from the ones I planted last year!

The plant I think is American Pondweed at this point, survived the winter and has leaves on the surface. I need to post a pic or two to get a positive ID. Interesting to me is that both this plant and my lilies come to the surface red color instead of green and then turn green. Is that normal?

Only had green Northern frogs until now. Tonight we have a bullfrog singing. I hope they thrive. We love frog legs! grin

Last year's YP spawn and the CC are the two big feeders when I toss pellets in the evening. I guess YP and CC can pellet train themselves if conditions are right.

Planted some pond plants this week as well:

Sagittaria latforia - saladupopl, Duck Potato

Elocharis plaustris - elplcrspba, Creeping Spike-Rush

Nuphar advena - Yellow nuadyepoliba Pond Lily

Iris pseudacorus - Yellow irpsyewairpl Water Iris

Scirpus acutus - Hardstem Bulrush


I love watching the evolution of the pond! Best investment I have ever made!


Posted By: snrub Re: Observations from Mutt Pond - 05/23/16 02:48 AM
Second best. At least when said in front of Nattha. grin
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Observations from Mutt Pond - 05/24/16 02:33 AM
Originally Posted By: snrub
Second best. At least when said in front of Nattha. grin


LOL! Definitely! She knows Thai kick boxing.......
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 06/09/16 02:38 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
a 8 1/4 inch HBG (Thanks for the ID help Cecil). I really like the white fins and fin tips. This one was returned to the pond.






This guy is still in the pond...Maybe he is much blacker??

I have a black velvet SF with a bright blue chin patch that comes every night at feeding time. You can spot him anywhere in the pond. All the other SF are "normal color." Tried to get a pic tonight but he was a bit far from shore. I will post one soon as I get one.

Anybody else have a coal black sunfish?

Attached File
HBG.jpg  (49 downloads)
Posted By: Bill D. Black Sunfish - 06/16/16 01:46 AM
Well Iím still trying to get a decent picture but the water visibility is not cooperating. Here are a couple of terrible shots of Blackie. I think it's an HBG. Comes every night and the color never changes; velvet black with aquamarine chin. It is not aggressive at all and lazily drifts up and takes pellets. Anybody got something similar? He is like the exact opposite of an albino but you can see, even in these terrible pics, his eyes almost glow.







Attached File
Blackie 1.jpg  (78 downloads)
Attached File
Blackie 2.jpg  (50 downloads)
Posted By: snrub Re: Black Sunfish - 06/16/16 02:53 AM
I had a BG, probably about 4-5", that was black on the back half of its body. The front half looked normal like the other fish. But the back half had a pigment problem and was very dark like your fish.

I eventually quit seeing it. It either became normal or got eaten by a LMB.
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
You have quite a few predators (SMB,LMB,WE,CC, & YP) for placing only 250 papershells in your pond. I catch YP with adult papershell in them. Every small fish in your pond will eat crayfish less than 1" long. IMO Survival will be dependent on how much cover you have available and how many you stock. For an existing pond with those predators capable of reproducing, I would have stocked closer to 2500 not 250. I stocked 300 PSC in a 1/3 acre minnow only pond and had good reproduction and recruitment. If you are really interested in providing crayfish as a constant forage food try growing them in a small 0.1 ac pond or pool with minnows as polyculture. Then transfer the surplus.

For readers here is a link to the page with some of BillD's shoreline see: West Waterway 1.jpg
http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=443300&page=6

Your rock lined shoreline with large concrete pieces may be enough cover for the crayfish to maintain broodstock, although with those crayfish loving predators (bass &CC) I would not expect numerous crayfish to always be present to serve as a good food source. With reproducing bass present it is very difficult to maintain minnows and small forage foods without a weedy pond. I think your predator types will eat crayfish more readily than small fish depending on abundance and encounter rate.


UpdateÖ

The papershells arrived in good condition a week or so ago and all were approximately 2 inches long. I stocked them into the rip-rap and concrete slabs around the pond shoreline. They made themselves right at home. I also stocked 1 into each of my aquariums as well. The first night every plant in all 3 aquariums got uprooted and was floating the next morning. Needless to say, I relocated the ones from the aquariums to the pond!





Attached File
Papershell.JPG  (66 downloads)
Bill, I did my first stocking of crawfish last year and they denuded the western shoreline with the exception of Blue flag and Louisiana iris. Everything else was removed by the craws. They loved the pondweed lol

Tracy
"The first night every plant in all 3 aquariums got uprooted and was floating the next morning. Needless to say, I relocated the ones from the aquariums to the pond!"
laugh

Years ago the wife, kids and I caught various creek critters to put in an aquarium. Wife went to lots of trouble to plant some different plants into the bottom. The craws did exactly what you said. They commenced to digging out and eating every plant and rearranging the aquarium to suit their wants instead of my wife's wants. Needless to say she was not happy about it.

In another situation, again years ago, wife had a few fancy tail goldfish in a small aquarium. Kids and I caught a few craws and put them in there. Wife noticed the fancy tail goldfish tails were getting shorter and ragged. One day we saw one of the small craws holding on to the tail of a goldfish with one pincer and eating the tail with the small pincers while the goldfish swam frantically around. Wife dispatched the craws. grin Boys and I just thought it was funny. She was not amused.
Dont crawldads bore holes in a ponds dam and cause leaks?
Originally Posted By: snrub
"The first night every plant in all 3 aquariums got uprooted and was floating the next morning. Needless to say, I relocated the ones from the aquariums to the pond!"
laugh

Years ago the wife, kids and I caught various creek critters to put in an aquarium. Wife went to lots of trouble to plant some different plants into the bottom. The craws did exactly what you said. They commenced to digging out and eating every plant and rearranging the aquarium to suit their wants instead of my wife's wants. Needless to say she was not happy about it.

In another situation, again years ago, wife had a few fancy tail goldfish in a small aquarium. Kids and I caught a few craws and put them in there. Wife noticed the fancy tail goldfish tails were getting shorter and ragged. One day we saw one of the small craws holding on to the tail of a goldfish with one pincer and eating the tail with the small pincers while the goldfish swam frantically around. Wife dispatched the craws. grin Boys and I just thought it was funny. She was not amused.


Snrub,

LOL!
Yeah, I had one in an aquarium when I was in college (plastic plants! smile ). The guy would climb up to the top of the plants and jump out trying to catch fish. He ate a lot of my fish. He didn't grab them with a pincher. He wrapped both pinchers around them kind of like a cage.

TGW1,

Vegetation control is one of the goals. I am hoping they at least help control my FA if I can get a good population established.
Originally Posted By: RRWJ
Dont crawldads bore holes in a ponds dam and cause leaks?


RRWJ,

It depends on the species. Some species burrow and can undercut the shore and damage dams. The papershell crawfish (PSC) I stocked are known for no/minimal borrowing and are considered one of the best species to stock as forage in ponds for that reason.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 07/18/16 02:06 AM
Just an update...

Part of the charter of Mutt Pond is just a decent place to fish. Somewhere you can go and catch nice sized fish for an occasional fish dinner. No more standing shoulder to shoulder with other guys at the local BOWs catching 6 inch BG(if yer lucky and get the "big" ones) to have a fish fry.

My bride headed to the pond tonight, with a bag containing a couple of chicken livers, mumbling something about catfish for dinner tomorrow night. She came back 20 minutes later with 2 CC pushing 4 pounds.

Gotta love it when the plan works! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 08/03/16 01:30 PM
Another Update.....

Our CC have gotten a little bigger than we like, pushing 4 pounds, so we have been spending a little time harvesting them. Removed 8 this week. We tried night crawlers and chicken liver but had little success. Switched to using 4 to 5 inch shiners and nailed them. I guess my take away from this is that "it depends" on a lot of things as to what bait is going to work for you on any given day when it comes to catching CC. 3 weeks ago, it was chicken liver.

Also tossed a couple minnow traps in last night just to see what I could catch. I was very happy with what I found. Both traps contained lots of 1.5 to 2 inch SF. They were a mixture of BG, HBG and PS. There might have been some pumpkingill (PSXBG) as well as there were what appeared to be a few PS but no orange on the flap. This is the first I have seen of the PS since stocking them at 2 to 3 inches in fall 2014. I have never actively fished for them with a small hook so I may have to give that a try.
Posted By: snrub Re: Harvest Time - 08/03/16 04:13 PM
I might have to give the shiners a try. Grandson and buddies caught twenty some CC one night early summer (I think they were using liver of some sort) but later have not had much luck catching them. I have lots of GSH in my forage pond that are easily trapped so will have to try that.

Those PS sure are pretty fish. Not native to our area or I would like to try some.;
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 08/04/16 01:59 AM
Snrub,

GSH is what we used for the CC. Fished them a couple feet under a cork near bait fish cover like lily pads, brush piles, etc. It was a lot of fun. My bride had them break her line twice. She is still struggling to get the hang of my old Sabre reels (at least 45 years old). The drag is disabled when you are reeling in.

Good Luck!
Posted By: snrub Re: Harvest Time - 08/04/16 02:10 AM
Maybe it is time you break down and buy your bride a new reel before she runs off with some guy with a big fancy Pflueger grin
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/04/16 02:17 AM
Sounds like a great idea for an anniversary present next year! grin
Posted By: snrub Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/04/16 03:09 AM
Don't wait till your anniversery and surprise her early, but try to not look guilty like you bought her a gift because you did something wrong.

Unsolicited gifts can either bring unexpected benefits or problems, depending on your ability to act like you have done nothing wrong. And we all know that is probably not the case. laugh laugh
Posted By: TGW1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/04/16 12:25 PM
Bill, she must love you a lot, I am surprised she is not using your reels. Snrub is right but I think a better deal is to take her to a local BPShop and let her pick out what she wants. Think of the rewards you might get smile Spend a little, get a little or so I have herd.

Tracy
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/04/16 05:13 PM
Seems like I've always spent a lot and gotten very little. On the other hand, I've got plenty of nothin and nothins plenty for me.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/05/16 01:46 AM
Guys I am feeling the pressure! smile

When we went fishing in Thailand our gear was an old plastic bottle with a line wrapped around it, a rusty hook (salt water) and a chunk of squid.

Seriously though, she only likes spin cast reels (closed face). Those old Sabre reels have performed flawlessly for 45+ years. All metal parts except for the button and a small piece in the line pickup mechanism. No part has ever failed. I tried to source a QUALITY new reel for her a few years back and came up empty. I bought a couple but they crapped out after a couple years. The only thing she doesn't like on the old reels is the "direct drive" clutch that disables the drag when you're reeling. IIRC the feature was put in to allow you to horse a fish if he heads for structure where he could get hung up. You need to use a pump and retrieve motion with these reels if you have a decent fish on. If any of you guys know of a high quality spin cast, no direct drive clutch, that can routinely handle a 15+ pound CC, I would really appreciate you letting me know.

Perfect example of the loss of workmanship and quality over the years....
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/05/16 11:49 AM
Bill, that reminds me of the old Zebco 33 vs the newer ones.
Posted By: TGW1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/06/16 11:53 AM
Bill, I agree the new closed face spinning reels are made cheaply and do not last as long as the older models. My wife also fishes with these types and prefers the one with the trigger system that is mounted below the reel casing. There is a few made that should handle the line u want but remember the drag system allows for using low poundage line. Now I am just thinking u can get her a new reel every year for your anniversary smile I will usually get a new one most every year for my lady, it helps to keep me in good graces and I need all the help I can get smile and they are usually less than 30 or 40 bucks. that cheaper than a mink coat

Tracy
Posted By: anthropic Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/07/16 12:17 AM
Tracy, I've found a correlation between expense, number of ball bearings, and quality in such reels. Pflueger makes the best in my experience.

So long as you're patient and there aren't too many obstructions, they can handle bigger fish than you'd expect. I've caught four bass exceeding 9 lbs with 4 lb test on such an ultralight reel.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/07/16 12:25 PM
Originally Posted By: Dave Davidson1
Bill, that reminds me of the old Zebco 33 vs the newer ones.


Yep!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/07/16 12:30 PM
Originally Posted By: anthropic
Tracy, I've found a correlation between expense, number of ball bearings, and quality in such reels. Pflueger makes the best in my experience.

So long as you're patient and there aren't too many obstructions, they can handle bigger fish than you'd expect. I've caught four bass exceeding 9 lbs with 4 lb test on such an ultralight reel.


Our pond is small and has a couple of brush piles. I think she needs a reel that can handle 8 to 10 lb test so the drag can be set heavier to limit the length run a fish can make. Any specific make/model recommendations?
Posted By: TGW1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/07/16 12:50 PM
Bill smile I have no recommendations on this type of reel other than the trigger type she likes. Like I said, it seems like I replace the reel every year or so and she prefers these over light open faced spinning reel. it would be nice if the zebco model would have larger ratio reel, a 6 to 1 would be real nice. I am betting the zebco ratio is 4 to 1 or less. And if they had some tougher gears would be nice also. Ha, I have bought a couple of different brands and some of them looked really good when purchased but they all seam to have the same problem with not lasting through more than one season or so. Probably not much help here, others than it puts a smile on her face when she sees her new reel when we head off to White River Ark for our trout fishing trips.

PS, maybe if one fills out the warranty card on each purchase it might save some bucks?? Ha, I may have to start doing that smile

Tracy

Posted By: Bill D. Got some Mutts - 08/23/16 01:56 AM
Sparkie or anybody else,

I have HBG, BG and PS. I assume the little "HBG," I know have a bunch of from my minnow traps, are mostly HBG X BG just because the HBG are mostly male. I could also have HBG X PS or BG x PS. Question is are F2 HBG X BG or PS mostly male or do they tend more towards 50/50?
Posted By: sprkplug Re: Got some Mutts - 08/23/16 02:30 AM
Good question. Wish I had an answer! Maybe ewest can post some info. As far as personal experience, in 8 years I can count the number of verifiable Fx hybrids I've caught in our ponds on one hand. If managed accordingly, there will be little to no recruitment.

Try this: http://quod.lib.umich.edu/f/fishery/AAG2862.1810.001?rgn=main;view=fulltext
Posted By: ewest Re: Got some Mutts - 08/23/16 03:31 PM
I will check but my guess is those hybrids will have skewed male /female ratios. Some lepomis crosses don't but GSF - BG do.

From Childers
Hubbs & Hubbs (1933) reported that in Michigen F1 hybrids of bluegills, green sunfish, longear sunfish, pumpkinseeds, and orangespotted sunfish were unable to reproduce because males were sterile and ova stripped from the few adult females used in the experiments appeared distinctly abnormal. This study, often cited in the literature, has resulted in a rather widespread belief that all male hybrid sunfish are sterile. Results of my experiments conclusively establish that a number of different kinds of hybrid sunfishes produced in Illinois are not sterile, are fully capable of producing abundant F2 and F3 generations, and can be successfully backcrossed to parent species and even outcrossed to nonparental species.


Triploid progeny of pumpkinseed X green sunfish hybrids
1. Robert M. Dawley,
2. John H. Graham and
3. R. Jack Schultz
+ Author Affiliations
1. Two of the authors (R.M.D. and R.J.S.) are affiliated with the Biological Sciences Group, the University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06268 and one (J.H.G.) with the Department of Biological Sciences, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08854. The current address of Dr. Dawley is Division of Biological Sciences, Section of Ecology and Systematics, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853. The authors gratefully acknowledge the help of Walter Whitworth for assistance in developing this project, Robert C. Vrijenhoek for use of his laboratory facilities that are currently funded in part by the National Science Foundation (NSF BSR82-12150), and Ellen Dawley, Kentwood Wells, and an anonymous reviewer for comments on the manuscript. Research was supported by the Biological Sciences Group of the University of Connecticut and by grants to the senior author from the Raney Fund of the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists and the Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Fund of the American Museum of Natural History.
Abstract
Female pumpkinseed X green sunfish hybrids from Hall's Pond, Connecticut, were backcrossed to male pumpkinseed and male green sunfish. Offspring from these crosses are triploid and starch-gel electrophoresls shows they carry a double dose of the maternal genome. Thus, the female hybrids must produce unreduced, diploid eggs that are subsequently fertilized to yield triploid progeny. This is similar to the situation in parthenogenetic and gynogenetic vertebrates, where unreduced gametes are produced that develop, without fertilization, into female clones. However, because the fertilized eggs of the female sunfish yield sterile triploids, a self-perpetuating diploid unisexual ďspeciesĒ has not arisen from these hybrids.
© 1985, American Genetic Association


Asymmetric hybridization between two species of sunfishes (Lepomis: Centrarchidae)
Authors
ē B. R. KONKLE, and D. P. PHILIPP

Abstract
Many of the sunfishes (Centrarchidae) hybridize in natural systems, yet little is known about the interactions among hybridizing individuals in nature. We used allozyme electrophoresis to identify interspecific hybrids between bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus) and pumpkinseed (L. gibbosus) in Lake Opinicon, Ontario, and restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to identify the maternal parentage of those individuals. All 44 individuals collected and identified electrophoreti-cally as F1 hybrids had a pumpkinseed mtDNA haplotype, indicating that hybridization between these species in Lake Opinicon is asymmetrical; F1 hybrids result only from matings between female pumpkinseed and male bluegill.

Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/24/16 02:06 AM
Thanks guys! I will try to post some pics of some minnow trap samplings in the next couple of weeks to get opinions on what kind of Mutts I've got! smile
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/24/16 02:39 AM
Bill, pictures would be great! Also while you are at it, I'm curious what the minnow traps themselves look like, how deep you place them and how you bait them. Thanks
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/25/16 02:30 AM
CC,

I use Gee traps (google them). I painted mine flat camo colors to eliminate the original bright shiny surfaces. I look for areas of the pond where I observe small fish traffic and throw the traps parallel to the shore with a foot or so of water over the trap and leave them overnight. Bait varies. I use a heel from a loaf of bread or some larger fish pellets when I just want to see what I can catch.

Ewest,
Originally Posted By: ewest
......All 44 individuals collected and identified electrophoreti-cally as F1 hybrids had a pumpkinseed mtDNA haplotype, indicating that hybridization between these species in Lake Opinicon is asymmetrical; F1 hybrids result only from matings between female pumpkinseed and male bluegill.
[/color]


Ever seen any data on HBG crosses with PS?
Posted By: snrub Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/25/16 04:56 AM
Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
Bill, pictures would be great! Also while you are at it, I'm curious what the minnow traps themselves look like, how deep you place them and how you bait them. Thanks


Here is some info on minnow traps.
Minnow traps
Posted By: ewest Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/25/16 03:18 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.


Ever seen any data on HBG crosses with PS?


Not to my knowledge. There is some on multispecies crosses/backcrosses but the genetics are way over my head - i.e. I cant gather useful info from the studies. I do think it could occur but not sure the results but likely not normal sex ratios.
Posted By: Bill D. First Pumpkinseed - 09/14/16 01:49 AM
I've never caught a PS in the pond since stocking them but I have never really targeted them either. I caught several little PS in my minnow traps recently so I thought I would see if I could catch an adult. Put a #8 hook with a piece of red worm under a cork and tossed it out near some lily pads.



I had forgotten just how pretty these fish are. The picture does not do this little fish justice.

Attached File
First Pumpkinseed.JPG  (60 downloads)
Posted By: snrub Re: First Pumpkinseed - 09/14/16 02:17 AM
They are pretty fish!
Posted By: ewest Re: First Pumpkinseed - 09/14/16 08:16 PM
Nice work ! Good to see a plan work.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: First Pumpkinseed - 09/15/16 09:55 PM
Maybe a data point on PS and snail control.... I stocked my PS when I had effectively no vegetation, and no snails, in the pond. I now have significant vegetation of several species. Although I have mechanically removed submerged vegetation several times, I have yet to find a snail. Maybe PS are more effective at snail control when you give them a head start on the snail population?
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: Turtlemtn
.... Do you know anyone I can get grass shrimp (P. kadiakensis) from?


I recently mentioned grass shrimp to the guy that supplied my SFS and BNM. Sounded like he might be able to supply grass shrimp as well. I'll check with him and report back.


Bill, did your source for grass shrimp ever work out? Are they still available?
CC,

I emailed Mark with your question on grass shrimp. It sounds like he can provide some Northern species still this year but I sent another email to confirm that. How many are you wanting to get?

He also said he could setup a grass shrimp production pond next year if there is enough demand to justify doing that.
Bill - I sure am interested. I will keep my new forage pond empty if these have a reasonable chance of becoming available.
I too will buy grass shrimp when they become available, even this fall if he has them.
very interested, although by now I have lots of hungry mouths that will try to snap them up.
Posted By: Bill D. Grass Shrimp - 09/16/16 07:46 PM
Guys,

I talked to Mark and he doesn't know how many he will have still this year. He asks that you contact him directly so he can assess the demand for this year as well as helping with the decision whether to create a shrimp production pond.

jonah@jonahsaquarium.com
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/16/16 08:14 PM
Bill, we will need to confirm that Mark truly has PK shrimp (P. kadiakensis, the hardy species, hard to come by that can overwinter under the ice in northern ponds) and not one of the many many other more commonly sold in the aquarium and pet supply circles before we get too carried away in our plans.

His source would have to come from a natural breeding population in a current northern pond similar to where my original stocker PK shrimp came from (Fattig source if I recall was in Nebraska?)
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/16/16 08:41 PM
CC, Yep he is aware of that. I believe his stock would be collected in central Ohio. He knows we are not interested in a southern strain.
Posted By: RAH Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/16/16 10:07 PM
Want to contact them but need a link to their email.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/17/16 01:21 AM
mailto:jonah@jonahsaquarium.com
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/17/16 01:23 AM
BTW Mark is familiar with Fattig and I told him his pricing would need to be along the same line...
Posted By: RAH Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/17/16 11:36 AM
Thank you Bill!
Posted By: 4CornersPuddle Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/17/16 03:28 PM
Thanks very much Bill.
Posted By: Bill D. First SMB - 09/18/16 02:20 AM
Another first. I was fishing with 5 inch shiner under a cork for CC and snagged this SMB. Haven't caught one since stocked. I didn't get a weight cause I wanted to get it back in the pond but seemed to be healthy at 14.25 inches. Great fighter and I'm looking forward to catching it again when it grows up to a nice 18 incher!

Lots of firsts for us this week with PS, SMB and a couple of 13+ inch WE as well. My bride also caught a nice 16 inch LMB. Nice to see the hard work paying off! smile





Attached File
First Smallmouth.JPG  (89 downloads)
Posted By: snrub Re: First SMB - 09/18/16 02:23 AM
Nice Bill!

You are making good progress!
Posted By: RAH Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/18/16 10:41 AM
Made contact but no response on what species they have yet.
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/18/16 01:29 PM
Nice looking Smb Bill ! I don't remember your stocking numbers, and a lmb also smile Heaven rite here on earth smile

Tracy
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/19/16 01:41 AM
Thanks for the encouragement guys! We are very happy with the results so far.

Tracy, the SMB were stocked at around 7 inches in fall 2014 and a couple in spring 2015. We only have half a dozen or so total.
Posted By: brook wilson Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/19/16 01:23 PM
Nice! Those smallies are a blast to catch.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/19/16 03:15 PM
Your SMB are big enough that you now should have more than one dozen smallies. Look for signs of young ones. If you do fish trapping SMB readily enter fish traps.
Posted By: 4CornersPuddle Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/20/16 03:44 AM
Mark at Jonah's aquarium wrote the following in reply to my request for grass shrimp availability:

I have access to brood stock, but I don't currently have a pond I can harvest shrimp from. I've been talking to Bill Dill and he said there is some interest among the forum members in this species. Is there a thread on there that I should be following? Can you give me some info about what Fattigs and others have been charging for this species? I'm interested in growing them. Just need more info. FYI, the vegetation is very important for shrimps for habitat and for food. I make and can supply fine mesh dipnets for folks to use to sample their ponds to see if shrimp and other creatures are in there: http://jonahsaquarium.com/JonahSite/netdipnet.htm Feel free to share that on the forum if you like. Thanks!

Mark Binkley

Can anyone answer his questions about how Carol Fattig used to price her shrimp?
What PondBoss forum threads would we recommend he follow?
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/20/16 10:57 AM
Good article in the latest PB Mag about grassshrimp.
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/20/16 11:27 AM
Originally Posted By: Dave Davidson1
Good article in the latest PB Mag about grassshrimp.

You r right Dave, wished I had some vegies for them to hang around in and a place for them to grow. But only FA in my pond right now and too many bg and res in there and no place for them to hide. Kinda a sucks frown

Tracy
Posted By: RAH Re: Grass Shrimp - 09/20/16 11:47 AM
I've got the perfect place for them, but no source as of yet.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: First SMB - 09/21/16 02:09 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Your SMB are big enough that you now should have more than one dozen smallies. Look for signs of young ones. If you do fish trapping SMB readily enter fish traps.


Have to laugh. A year or so back one of the pros told me that SMB would most likely not spawn in a small puddle like mine so when I had a chance to pick up a few SMB to ladder stock yesterday I put in 4 at 7+ inches and 1 at 10+

I hope you're right Bill. I only have minnow traps and haven't seen any yet. I still have at least 3 LMB as well but no sign of recruits. I wonder with the predators we have in the pond if there will be any significant number of recruits even if the LMB or SMB do spawn. We caught several 9 to 10 inch YP and a couple 13.5+ inch WE last week on 3 inch GSH. I would think those YP and WE would like small bass the same as GSH. I guess time will tell. If we have some recruits they should show up on a hook next summer. grin

PS - I know we had at least 3 mature LMB at spawn time this year as we've caught a 15, 15.5 and a 16 in the last couple weeks. We harvested the 15 and it was a female.
Posted By: Bill D. More SF Update - 09/26/16 09:09 PM
Our harvest 2016 update would not be complete without showing how the SF (other than the PS) are doing. We are catching several around this size with a few bigger. Also seeing at least three size classes smaller. Kept a couple as my bride needed them to barbecue for a Thai dish she was making.






Attached File
9 inch BG.JPG  (75 downloads)
Posted By: Bob-O Re: More SF Update - 09/26/16 10:29 PM
As Hank Hill would say, "Dammit Bill" most of your post make me hungry. Nice FAT BG, congrats on a lot of diligent effort coming to fruition. Next yr will be better.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: More SF Update - 09/27/16 12:31 AM
Thanks for the encouragement Bob! We have taken a lot of Rw measurements this summer on our fish and they have all fallen within 97 to 108. I suspect that guy would have been in that range as well. I was pleased to see even the PS from a few posts back was nice and chunky. I only supplemental feed around 3 cups of food once a day for my own entertainment. The fish look healthy to this uneducated eye so I figure they are doing ok. I give most of the credit to the vegetation, rip rap, etc in the pond providing the habitat for the food chain.

I know my little Mutts can't compare to a lot of you guys with 130%+ Rw but I'm happy with them.
Posted By: ewest Re: More SF Update - 09/27/16 02:54 PM
90% of it is about the journey ! Well done !
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 10/15/16 11:03 AM
Update....Harvest 2016 is drawing to a close on our pond. Still having the best luck catching the few remaining large CC on bait fish. My bride accidentally gut hooked a 4 inch BG yesterday. She put it under a cork, tossed it out and traded it in for a 24.5 inch 5 pound 8 ounce CC. Still have 4 or 5 more CC and at least one more LMB I would like to get out this fall.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Harvest Time - 10/15/16 03:36 PM
Oh such tough chores. Good thing ya have your wife ta carry ya.
Posted By: peachgrower Re: Harvest Time - 10/15/16 05:06 PM
*~*~dreaming of the days when WE get to harvest fish~*~*

Sounds like a hard job...I'm feeling for you! lol.

Glad its going well. Didn't you say you had GSF?? Are they still there or have your LMB and CC taken care of most of them?
Posted By: snrub Re: Grass Shrimp - 10/16/16 01:37 AM
Originally Posted By: 4CornersPuddle
Mark at Jonah's aquarium wrote the following in reply to my request for grass shrimp availability:

I have access to brood stock, but I don't currently have a pond I can harvest shrimp from. I've been talking to Bill Dill and he said there is some interest among the forum members in this species. Is there a thread on there that I should be following? Can you give me some info about what Fattigs and others have been charging for this species? I'm interested in growing them. Just need more info. FYI, the vegetation is very important for shrimps for habitat and for food. I make and can supply fine mesh dipnets for folks to use to sample their ponds to see if shrimp and other creatures are in there: http://jonahsaquarium.com/JonahSite/netdipnet.htm Feel free to share that on the forum if you like. Thanks!

Mark Binkley

Can anyone answer his questions about how Carol Fattig used to price her shrimp?
What PondBoss forum threads would we recommend he follow?


This thread might be helpful.

Grass shrimp order
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 10/19/16 12:12 AM
Originally Posted By: peachgrower
..... Didn't you say you had GSF?? Are they still there or have your LMB and CC taken care of most of them?


Only stocked one GSF. Not sure it is still in there.

IMHO every pond should have ONE GSF and ONE BCP no matter what the pond size! grin
Posted By: snrub Re: Harvest Time - 10/19/16 02:41 AM
If you stocked one GSF, you have more than one.

They are like those Russian nesting Matryoshka dolls. One inside the other inside the other inside the other. Nesting Dolls

The inside ones don't come out till you put the one in water. laugh
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Harvest Time - 10/20/16 12:09 AM
Originally Posted By: snrub
If you stocked one GSF, you have more than one.

They are like those Russian nesting Matryoshka dolls. One inside the other inside the other inside the other. Nesting Dolls

The inside ones don't come out till you put the one in water. laugh


Mystery solved....I think my LMB must be Russian too! cry
Tossed $100 bucks in the pond....

I was happy to see I still have several SFS and BNM this fall after my spring stocking. In an effort to help get them thru the winter till next spring's spawn, I dropped 10 pounds of FHM into my little puddle in the last week as easy catch diversions for my predator gauntlet to minimize the pressure on my desired forage. I have no idea if 2000 to 3000 FHM will help but I figure it can't hurt! smile My thinking is that I've read lots of posts about how hard it is to introduce a new species to a mature pond and thought I would try using cheap bait fish to "muddy" the water for the predators.

Anybody have any thoughts or experience on using a "diversion" strategy to preserve a species while trying to get it established?
Bill, what u did is similar to my adding the Tp each yr. Takes pressure off the Bg and maybe the TFS. Also similar to adding crawfish to the pond because I see no survival after a month or so after stocking. Cost for the crawfish was $100.00
Thanks for the input Tracy. I have a lot more vegetation for cover in the pond now so I'm hoping, if I get brood SFS and BNM to make it thru the winter, they will stand a decent chance of getting a sustainable population going. The SFS and BNM were not easy to source and were not cheap. I figure a $100 worth of FHM is a low cost way to try to maybe sway the odds a little in my favor. Guess I will find out.
Posted By: Bill D. Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/05/16 12:32 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Thanks guys! I will try to post some pics of some minnow trap samplings in the next couple of weeks to get opinions on what kind of Mutts I've got! smile



Here's a few pics from the traps. I THINK the potential parents are limited to BG, PS or HBG. I'd appreciate anybody's thoughts on what these are. (Not the best pics but maybe good enough for some opinions). The second fish had a little orange on the opercular flap.

Thanks in advance!

Bill











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MT1.jpg  (55 downloads)
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MT2.jpg  (51 downloads)
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MT3.jpg  (49 downloads)
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/05/16 02:33 PM
closer and better focus would help for the pictures. The fish are a little small for good identification. My best guess is the 1st & 3rd fish are PS and the 2nd fish is a BG. Did you ever get a chance to make the study of comparing the catches of a bare wire minnow trap versus black coated wire trap?
Posted By: esshup Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/06/16 12:24 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Did you ever get a chance to make the study of comparing the catches of a bare wire minnow trap versus black coated wire trap?


I did, but I'll wait for Bill D to answer first. laugh
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/06/16 04:42 AM
Originally Posted By: esshup
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Did you ever get a chance to make the study of comparing the catches of a bare wire minnow trap versus black coated wire trap?


I did, but I'll wait for Bill D to answer first. laugh


Esshup,

Carry on please with the report of your study. smile

My study is on the color of minnow traps, not the type of coating. I have a lot more to do to have any definitive results. I was too busy with "have to" projects at the new place this summer. I'm hoping for more time for "want to" projects like this next summer.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/06/16 12:26 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
closer and better focus would help for the pictures. The fish are a little small for good identification. My best guess is the 1st & 3rd fish are PS and the 2nd fish is a BG. ...


Thanks Bill!

I had guessed the same on the first two pics. I caught lots of both of those. The third pic had me scratching my head. I caught several that looked like that (not near as many as the other two). They seemed a little more disc shaped and I could not see any orange/red on the flap. I suspect you're right that they're PS, maybe just a different spawn and too small to really identify anyway.
Posted By: esshup Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/07/16 01:31 AM
Placed 2 traps side by side. One galvanized, one black.

3 days in a row, galvanized had 20-30 FHM/GHS in it. Black = 0
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/07/16 11:58 PM
Originally Posted By: esshup
Placed 2 traps side by side. One galvanized, one black.

3 days in a row, galvanized had 20-30 FHM/GHS in it. Black = 0


Definitely an interesting result. Obviously, I have a real interest in this so, of course, I have lots of questions! smile

Was the black trap one of those "plastic" covered ones? Were the openings the same size and config. in the two traps? (The black traps I've seen have a ring at the opening while the Gee traps I use have exposed wires.) Did you run your tests during the day or night and do you think it would have made a difference? If daytime, sunny day or cloudy? If you trapped in a stream, was one trap always place "upstream" of the other or were they alternated. ..... Any details you can remember would be of interest to me.

Thanks!
Posted By: esshup Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/08/16 04:23 AM
Multiple days in a pond. Daytime use sunny/cloudy made no difference. Exposed wires at mouth. Lightly coated wire. Same food as bait in all traps. I even bent the mouth to a slit on the black one and still no takers. Traps set at same depth, parallel to shore.

Latest test was today. Same results while the Gee traps had 15-30 FHM/GSH each.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/08/16 11:39 AM
I have found no difference in them.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/08/16 06:12 PM
Dave,

Were you also trapping GSH and FHM or different species? Maybe some species are less sensitive to the trap color?
Posted By: ewest Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/08/16 10:35 PM
There is an old PB Cutting Edge article that has a finding on the subject.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/09/16 02:02 PM
Bill, no minnows. Just a bunch of BG, CNBG and GSF
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/09/16 11:13 PM
Thanks Dave,

Taking your and Esshup's experience into consideration suggests a hypothesis that a shiny galvanized trap works better as an all purpose trap for all species.... may be worth investigating.

Ewest,

Do you remember anymore about the old article or do you know if there is a way I can find or order a copy? I see no value in me repeating the study on trap color/finish if it has already been done.
Posted By: esshup Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/10/16 12:23 AM
Bill, after a few days in the water the trap is no longer shiny.....
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/10/16 12:59 AM
Originally Posted By: esshup
Bill, after a few days in the water the trap is no longer shiny.....


Yep. I should have just said galvanized.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/10/16 01:54 AM
PBoss Mag Sep-Oct 2012. 15. Science & The Cutting Edge. BITS AND PIECES. E.West summarizes four articles: Catch efficiency of black vs galvanized minnow traps; Electrofishing effects on bass feeding behavior; Effects of suspended sediments on streams; and Training stocked predator-naÔve fish to avoid predators.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/10/16 02:07 AM
Thanks Bill. Sounds like a very interesting read. I will order a copy from the PBM office.

Question to the mods: Is it ok if I post here the results of that study once I read it?
Posted By: ewest Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/10/16 04:52 PM
Yes that is ok.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/10/16 11:41 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Thanks Dave,

Taking your and Esshup's experience into consideration suggests a hypothesis that a shiny galvanized trap works better as an all purpose trap for all species.... may be worth investigating.

Ewest,

Do you remember anymore about the old article or do you know if there is a way I can find or order a copy? I see no value in me repeating the study on trap color/finish if it has already been done.


Thanks to a thoughtful PBF member for sending me a copy, I read the old Cutting Edge article on trap color today.

To paraphrase.... The article supported the hypothesis that a galvanized trap works better as an all purpose trap for all species than a black one does. In their study, the galvanized caught more of every species tested (up to 5 times more of some species) than did a black vinyl coated trap, with the exception of redbelly dace. The article did not go into detail on the testing with the redbelly dace so it is not clear if the black trap was better or equivalent in performance of trapping that species.

A question not addressed was whether it was the black color or the vinyl coating or both that made the fish less likely to enter the black vinyl trap.

My conclusion after reading the article is, if given the opportunity to buy a galvanized trap or a black vinyl coated one, buy the galvanized. This is also supported by Esshup's tests.

The jury is still out in my mind on whether galvanized is the absolute best finish. I think I might still do additional testing using a galvanized trap as the control and evaluate other colors against it.
Posted By: poppy65 Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/11/16 02:59 AM
I've also noticed my Gee traps catch more fish than my black ones. I do have a large black one (4 feet by about 2 feet)that I bought from Dunn's IIRC and that thing catches a lot of fish, even some YP. I don't have a galvanized one that size to compare it to though.
Posted By: esshup Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/11/16 02:28 PM
Take a Gee trap, paint it black and see how it does. To reverse it, you can repaint it galvanized.
https://www.rustoleum.com/product-catalog/consumer-brands/stops-rust/cold-galvanizing-compound-spray
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/11/16 02:46 PM
poppy65 - You must have bought that trap somewhere other than Dunn's or is it an old trap no longer sold by Dunn's.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/11/16 02:48 PM
A study of painting several Gee minnow traps each a different color would make a very interesting study to write about for Pond Boss magazine. Many people would benefit from the results.
Posted By: FireIsHot Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/11/16 04:22 PM
Maybe also leave one in the pond and see how a coating of algae effects the results?
Posted By: esshup Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/11/16 05:15 PM
Originally Posted By: FireIsHot
Maybe also leave one in the pond and see how a coating of algae effects the results?


Algae won't form on a galvanized trap. Had a client have 1/2 of one roll into the pond. 5 months later I fished it out. No algae, but some signs of rust showing. When he went to use it next year, it lasted a day before a big rust hole showed up.
Posted By: poppy65 Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/12/16 12:18 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
poppy65 - You must have bought that trap somewhere other than Dunn's or is it an old trap no longer sold by Dunn's.


Dang Bill, I'm getting old. I bought it online from someplace about a year ago. I've looked at Dunn's site several times and may be confused. I'll see if I can find it.

ETA, Here it is Bill. It is at Dunn's site. I was off on the width a bit. It is 4 feet long by 20 inches across.


DUNN'S 'KWIK KETCH' FISH TRAP - kkft - FISH TRAP DUNN'S 'KWIK KETCH' FISH TRAP
Product#†kkft
The Kwik-Ketch Fish Trap is the answer to the problem of undesirable fish in your pond or lake. Unlike most traps, our fish traps are constructed of only the most durable of plastic materials so corrosion will never be an issue. This trap weighs in at only 8 pounds so it's lightweight enough that almost anyone can use it, but durable enough that it always holds its shape.
At 48" tall and 20" through the center, this trap is large enough to catch the big fish, but with an adjustable throat it can still hold the small ones too. Whether you are trying to rid your pond of unwanted fish, or you just want a few fish to eat but don't always have the time to fish, Dunns Fish Trap is the answer.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/12/16 12:28 AM
I have a home made one with galvanized wire. It's the size of a 30 gallon barrel. I've used small traps next to it of both black coated and uncoated with no discernable difference in catch rates.
Posted By: snrub Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/12/16 12:35 AM
I get mixed results Dave. I think overall performance of the Gee's is better and their quality is tops. But once in a while there will be more fish in the black plastic one. It is kind of a crap shoot.

But if I have need to buy any more, it will be the Gee's. Overall I like their traps better.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/12/16 01:04 AM
poppy65 - Okay thanks for the clarification. I was looking at Dunn's Sporting goods not Dunn's Fish Farm. I forgot there was a Dunn's Fish Farm. Can you look to see what the mesh size is, 1/2" or 3/4"? Can we assume the door to remove fish is in the side? How is the throat adjustable? Their picture is poor quality.
How do they ship that big thing?
http://dunnsfishfarm.com/fish_trap_detail_183_prd1.htm
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/12/16 01:12 AM
Originally Posted By: Dave Davidson1
I have a home mad one with galvanized wire. It's the size of a 30 gallon barrel. I've used small traps next to it of both black coated and uncoated with no discernable difference in catch rates.


Dave,

When you say "black coated," are they painted black or coated with black vinyl? Are your black traps well used and pretty old or are they relatively new additions to your pond management tool box?

To this uneducated eye, your experience indicates to me there is more to it than just trap color. Perhaps species to be trapped, density of fish, habitat the trap is placed in, etc. are variables that can come into play making a definitive result difficult. One thing I find interesting is your results do indicate that the galvanized does at least as well as the black. That is one finding that seems to run true thru all the info so far. I have yet to see anything that says the black out performs the galvanized under any conditions.

Perhaps another consideration is smell. When something is coated in vinyl, I can smell it. I would think fish can too. What about a painted trap? Yes it is a different color but can the fish smell the paint where maybe they can't smell the galvanized trap or maybe the smell is not as offensive? Is smell just as/more important than color?
Posted By: poppy65 Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/12/16 03:22 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
poppy65 - Okay thanks for the clarification. I was looking at Dunn's Sporting goods not Dunn's Fish Farm. I forgot there was a Dunn's Fish Farm. Can you look to see what the mesh size is, 1/2" or 3/4"? Can we assume the door to remove fish is in the side? How is the throat adjustable? Their picture is poor quality.
How do they ship that big thing?
http://dunnsfishfarm.com/fish_trap_detail_183_prd1.htm


Bill, it just came in a big cardboard box. I'll have to measure the mesh size tomorrow. The door is on the side but has no latch. It just kind of pushes in place. I haven't messed with the throat but it looks to just have hog rings holding it in place. I suppose you could remove the hog ring closest to the hold and expand it. It works well for me at this size because I just use it to catch 3 or 4 inch bluegill to transfer to my big pond. I hadn't seen any reproduction from the few YP I put in 2 years ago but I have caught three in this trap smaller than what I stocked, so I know I had some.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/12/16 03:07 PM
poppy65 - Good report thanks for the info.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/12/16 11:48 PM
P65,

Sounds like your large black trap is plastic with no paint or vinyl coating. Correct?
Posted By: poppy65 Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/13/16 03:13 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
P65,

Sounds like your large black trap is plastic with no paint or vinyl coating. Correct?


Yes. I'm not sure why it catches a lot of fish while my black plastic minnow traps catch very few. Maybe a trap like this made from hardware cloth would do even better? Bull frog tadpoles seem to like it too. Caught 3 dozen or so of those last week when I set it out.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/14/16 12:22 PM
Bill, it looks like it was dipped in some sort of vinyl. I don't see a difference but I've never really tried to test them. I put some feed in a piece of panty hose. Then put a little bit in the trap. Then I toss a small amount into the trap area.

There may be times when one works better than another but I've never worried about it. Heck, they work. The biggest deal is to be there about 20 minutes after putting the trap in the water. Much longer and they get away in the small traps. In the 30 gallon one, I can generally wait an hour but I have no idea what happens during that time.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Minnow trap survey - Fish ID help - 11/16/16 01:00 AM
Thanks for the additional insight Dave!

In my 35 years as an engineer I have run hundreds of DOEs (Design of Experiment) and I can honestly say I donít recall one that has more variables than this potential one. Letís see thereís trap color, soak time, species, trap config, trap coating, type of BOW, water clarity, water temp, time of day, weather conditions, bait used, water depth, vegetation present, and on and onÖÖ..It goes on forever! Iím throwing up my hands and just going to trap the little guys with my galvanized Gee traps; they work for me good enough. I accept I might catch a few more on a given day under the exact right conditions with something elseÖ.

First analogy that comes to mind is it's like trying to come up with the best bait to catch bass...well it depends on.....and besides, the Bass Pro Shop catalog and shops would be boring with only one bass bait! smile

My thanks to everybody that provided inputs. I suspect you've saved me a lot of frustration trying to sort out a very complex problem by attempting to apply a simplistic approach when it is impossible to prevent uncontrolled variables from creeping into the study.. I think there is enough data already that says a galvanized trap works "pretty good."
Posted By: Bill D. Pumpkinseed Snail Control? - 12/06/16 02:07 AM
Pumpkinseed for snail control updateÖ

The goal in stocking pumpkinseed sunfish (PS) in our pond was twofold. One, they are a really pretty fish and bring back memories of my childhood; catching them in rivers and streams in central Indiana. (My mom cooked hundreds of 5 inch PS!). Primarily though the goal was snail control.

Some historyÖ

I stocked 100 small (1 to 2 inch mostly and a few 2.5) PS in the fall of 2014.

In 2015 we did not catch any PS and I saw no fingerlings in the minnow traps.

Several very small snails observed when skimming vegetation late summer 2016.

In 2016 we started catching a few 5 to 6 inch PS by hook and large numbers of 1.5 inch in late summer in the minnow traps.

Background:Ö

There are also BG and a few HBG in the pond. The number of BG making it to the 3 to 6 inch size class is small

We will continue to harvest the few remaining large CC and LMB 15 inches or larger

I know that snails are not the preferred forage for PS. They would much rather eat aquatic insects, zoo plankton, etc. An old Dr. Willis article provides that you need to have BG stocked along with the PS as the BG will hog the preferred forage, which forces the PS to target the snails.

So I THINK, I have the right ingredients in place to maybe get the PS to start controlling the snails. Hopefully, the now reproducing PS population, along with harvest of CC and LMB (only a few left of each), will take some of the pressure off the BG allowing them to get a few more recruits into the 3 to 6 inch size class. More BG should put more pressure on the forage base for the PS and possibly get them to move towards eating more snails. I may be walking a fine line between getting enough BG to force the PS to eat snails and an over population of PS, BG or both. I will be watching the BG and PS populations closely to see if the predator harvest plan needs tweaking.

There are a whole bunch of IFs here. It is an interesting experiment.

Comments, constructive criticism or suggestions would be appreciated!

Posted By: Bill D. BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/27/16 12:02 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
.... Hopefully, the now reproducing PS population, along with harvest of CC and LMB (only a few left of each), will take some of the pressure off the BG allowing them to get a few more recruits into the 3 to 6 inch size class.. .....


When I first stocked my pond one concern was that the BG would probably over populate as my small mouthed predators (YP, SMB and WE) would most likely be unable to control their population. As of this fall, just the opposite seems to be the case. The BG are unable to provide many recruits larger than 3 inches. I have struggled to understand why that is. A post by Ewest in another thread started maybe shedding some light. To paraphrase, ďthe cool water YP eat a lot of small BG when the water cools in the fall as the BG slow down but the YP are still going strong.Ē If I extend that thought to the same principle probably applies to the SMB and WE, who are eating slightly larger BG than the YP, and that I have a few LMB and CC, then maybe the reason I have such poor BG recruitment becomes more clear. Add to that my pond is in Northern Illinois and that the BG only spawn 3 times (in a good year), might add another piece to the puzzle. Iíve spent a lot of time going thru old threads to see if I could find any evidence that folks have succeeded in establishing a cool species pond with BG as forage. I found this old thread.

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=10096&page=1

One post in that old thread that really caught my attentionÖ

Originally Posted By: lakedoctor
....This is all about stocking rates and the size of the smallies when stocked.The smb that I like to stock is between 4to8" If the bluegill is stocked at a rate of .50 normal rates then the only thing that is going to be overpopulated is the fishermen on the bank.The SMB will keep the bluegill pop. in tact they don't target the big bluegill because well the name says it all Smallmouth. But the fry to 3" size is fair game and in the north it makes a nice balance. The only thing that I didn't add was the channels.Stock these at below normal rates last 4to6" is good.I have stocked 3to4 ponds this way and all are doing better than the large mouth at growth and population balance.The owners are happy and won't let me take my best friend fishing.The Smb are 4years old and are between 3.5 to almost 5 pounds with plenty of huge bluegill to throw on the dinner plate.This type of pond needs to be monitored close to keep a good balance but is well worth it. DOC


Iím now wondering whether my PS spawning may actually be a necessity in providing enough forage as we move into 2017. I also have a few GSH (stable small population) and stocked in 2016 SFS, BNM and PSC in the pond. I also supplemental feed pellets (This spring it will be Optimal BG chow)

Questions:

1) Do PS stay more active as the water cools than the BG do; maybe making the PS perhaps more elusive with a better chance at recruitment?

2) I would think the SMB and WE will also target small SMB and YP. Can BG and PS together provide enough additional forage for the predators I have with good management of predator numbers?

3) Should I stock more adult BG?

4) Should I start harvesting some of the larger YP?

Any suggestions or comments would be appreciated! smile

Posted By: poppy65 Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/27/16 04:34 AM
Bill, are you seeing any YP recruitment with that combo? I've watch my SMB line up 4 at a time to take turns hammering a school of young YP and I see near zero recruitment. I also have BG and HBG and a few HSB. I do get a fair amount of HBG and BG recruitment
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/27/16 07:27 PM
poppy65 if you want more recruitment from you YP reduce the number of predators eating the young YP. You are not doubt getting hatches of the YP, but too many predators are reducing the numbers of young YP. Also significantly increasing the amount of habitat especially dense habitat will help recruitment of YP. Perch do well in weedy ponds. Consider adding hybrid water lilies.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/27/16 09:40 PM
Originally Posted By: poppy65
Bill, are you seeing any YP recruitment with that combo? I've watch my SMB line up 4 at a time to take turns hammering a school of young YP and I see near zero recruitment. I also have BG and HBG and a few HSB. I do get a fair amount of HBG and BG recruitment


Hey Poppy,

All I can tell you is that when I was feeding last spring, I had a few 4 to 5 inch YP come up to eat with my little group of BG recruits near shore. The YP pretty much disappeared as the water warmed up. The YP had to be recruits from the 2015 spawn.

I was actually pretty happy with the pond balance in 2016. The larger BG caught were nice and fat and the predators had Rw of roughly 100+/-5%. I THINK low recruitment is what you are after if you want bigger BG and YP. My concern is 2017 and beyond as my predators grow and need more forage. I'm hoping now that the PS are spawning they will provide the additional forage needed for a while. The pond only has so much capacity so I know I need to keep harvesting predators like the LMB and CC. My question is once those guys are gone, if I'm seeing low recruitment on BG, PS and YP, which cool water predators should I harvest, how many and what size to keep them from over eating the forage? The other scenario is my pond ends up over populated by SF!

I haven't been having much luck with getting many inputs from the forum and I'm in uncharted waters for me. Trying to understand what I'm seeing and figuring out what to do next is definitely challenging.

Posted By: Bill Cody Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/27/16 10:26 PM
""and the predators had Rw of roughly 100+/-5%."" Your predators are likely plump from eating small perch. Harvest all larger predators and replace or ladder stock with small predators especially if your predators do not reproduce. It is all about management and numbers balance.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/27/16 11:45 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
""and the predators had Rw of roughly 100+/-5%."" Your predators are likely plump from eating small perch. Harvest all larger predators and replace or ladder stock with small predators especially if your predators do not reproduce. It is all about management and numbers balance.


Thanks for throwing me a life line Bill!

How does this sound?

Remove as many CC over 16 and over as I can. No ladder stocking until I get most/all of current herd out. Then stock no more than 5 at a time and remove at 16 or over.

My wife loves to eat bass so remove all LMB 15 or larger and SMB 16 or larger. I already ladder stocked 5 or 6 SMB this summer as no sign yet the original stockers have reproduced.

Remove WE 18 or larger and ladder stock as required to replace removed fish.

Remove the size class of YP under the largest caught.

I know the YOY YP are still probably going to get hammered with this plan but I worry the BG and PS populations will explode if I cut the predator size too low.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/28/16 12:25 AM
If YP presence are important you can always ladder stock them. Adding 20-30 YP(6"-8") each year is economical and will help a lot to keep the brood stock adequate and viable. In a pond your size 20-30 perch at early maturity size is acceptable recruitment in a mixed fish community and pond size similar to yours.

If it were my pond, I would reduce the predator size by 1"-2" to harvest when these predators are caught. Eat them. Walleye at 15", recruiting LMB at 13"-14", CC at 14"-15" all produce acceptable fillets. As you see more presence of small sunfish via trapping and angling, then you can increase the harvest slot limit size. Catching targeted predator fish is a lot easier to talk about compared to actually doing it. Been there done all that.

With CC having a tendency to become hook smart with each catch-release and the problem of selectively targeting, removing them, I would never release a CC of any size once it is 'landed'. In your situation I would never restock CC. IMO the last 1-3 CC of your current fishery will be quite difficult to catch even though they show up a feeding times.

With both LMB & SMB present in a small to medium pond do not ever expect to see recruitment of the SMB. I have yet to hear of it happening after many years dealing with smallies. If it ever happens, I want to hear about the pond size, habitat type and overall pond conditions. LMB have a STRONG repressive affect on the spawn and recruitment of smallmouth. I assume it is possible for SMB to recruit in a small lake containing highly complex habitat, but it would be extremely rare.
Posted By: snrub Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/28/16 12:59 AM
Bill C have you any experiience with trying to trap predators? I would think CC would be possible but LMB not.

I have one medium sized fish trap but very limited usage. I'm hoping I can harvest some of my large CC next year via trapping by making my own large trap like some of the ones posted in previous threads.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/28/16 01:09 AM
I rarely trap in ponds with CC. A good thing to check with this is contact the closest or known fishery biologist to you. Maybe check with Lusk?. Most states regularly set trap nets to monitor fish populations. This will provide an idea how well CC enter their traps. Lead lines may help direct CC into the trap. Baited or unbaited who knows? Trap size and shape does affect the largest fish that can enter the trap. I regularly catch smallmouth and walleye in traps, very, very rare is a LMB caught; only one trap captured fingerling LMB in my trapping history.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/28/16 01:24 AM
First...Thanks again Bill. There is a pondmeister in Northern Illinois that will sleep a little better tonight now that he has a plan for the future. smile

To help avoid the hook shy issue with CC, I have used a bigger hook, #2. The little guys rarely can get that hook in their mouth but learn the food on that hook is good to eat. So when they get big enough for the #2 hook .... Yes, you get a lot of nuisance bites and spend time re-baiting the hook. Changing baits also helps. Not a fool proof method thou. Nothing you can do when you are fishing with a smaller hook with a worm for BG and a smaller CC jumps on. That's ok cause I love small CC with the "bone in" deep fried! grin
Posted By: Bill D. Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/28/16 01:35 AM
Originally Posted By: snrub
Bill C have you any experiience with trying to trap predators? I would think CC would be possible but LMB not.

I have one medium sized fish trap but very limited usage. I'm hoping I can harvest some of my large CC next year via trapping by making my own large trap like some of the ones posted in previous threads.


Snrub,

IIRC CC are arguably the smartest fish in the pond. I will be surprised if the big ones are easily trapped. Please let us know how it goes.

Posted By: poppy65 Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/28/16 04:53 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
First...Thanks again Bill. There is a pondmeister in Northern Illinois that will sleep a little better tonight now that he has a plan for the future. smile

To help avoid the hook shy issue with CC, I have used a bigger hook, #2. The little guys rarely can get that hook in their mouth but learn the food on that hook is good to eat. So when they get big enough for the #2 hook .... Yes, you get a lot of nuisance bites and spend time re-baiting the hook. Changing baits also helps. Not a fool proof method thou. Nothing you can do when you are fishing with a smaller hook with a worm for BG and a smaller CC jumps on. That's ok cause I love small CC with the "bone in" deep fried! grin


There ya go Bill. Those small CC with the bone in taste better than the large fillets to me. Down here we call them "fiddlers". Not sure if that is a regional thing or not. A local tavern/restaurant has served fried fiddlers as far back as I can remember and I always get them instead of the fillets.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/28/16 07:51 PM
BillD. says ""IIRC CC are arguably the smartest fish in the pond."" This is why I suggested to not stock any more of them. There are other fish that can take the place of CC, be easier to catch, cause fewer problems, and taste as good if not better.
Posted By: ewest Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/29/16 12:18 AM
There are incidents of SMB reproducing in ponds where there are LMB but it is where the SMB greatly outnumber the LMB (only a very few LMB). This lasts for a few years but over time the LMB take over and the SMB disappear.
Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/29/16 12:30 AM
[/quote]
There ya go Bill. Those small CC with the bone in taste better than the large fillets to me. Down here we call them "fiddlers". Not sure if that is a regional thing or not. A local tavern/restaurant has served fried fiddlers as far back as I can remember and I always get them instead of the fillets. [/quote]

We call small CC (usually under one lb) fiddlers here in Arkansas too.
The small ones make a croaking noise when held to remove a hook.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 12/29/16 01:28 AM
Originally Posted By: ewest
There are incidents of SMB reproducing in ponds where there are LMB but it is where the SMB greatly outnumber the LMB (only a very few LMB). This lasts for a few years but over time the LMB take over and the SMB disappear.


Ewest,

Thanks for the input! I have yet to see SMB recruits in my pond as well. The go forward plan for me will be just to ladder stock SMB to replace those I harvest. IMO the fight from a 15 inch Smallie makes an equivalent size LMB seem like a lamb, I don't want to give that up!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/29/16 01:34 AM
Originally Posted By: John F
Originally Posted By: poppy65
There ya go Bill. Those small CC with the bone in taste better than the large fillets to me. Down here we call them "fiddlers". Not sure if that is a regional thing or not. A local tavern/restaurant has served fried fiddlers as far back as I can remember and I always get them instead of the fillets.


We call small CC (usually under one lb) fiddlers here in Arkansas too.
The small ones make a croaking noise when held to remove a hook.


You guys are making me hungry! I've never heard the little guys called Fiddlers before but I like it!

I wish there was a good place near me that served them. IMO Only thing better than a restaurant that serves good "Fiddlers" is one that serves them all you can eat! smile
Posted By: SetterGuy Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/30/16 02:58 PM
Very interesting reading this morning. Lots of good info here. I need to take a bit more time, and more effort to see how my recruitment is going. I had schools of smaller fish along the banks all summer. When I tried to trap, I caught tadpoles. I know I had a lot of YP ribbons, and the RES had nests in shallow water. The GSH seem to be more numerous than they were last summer. I had nesting beds made for the SMB, but my water level dropped, and I think they ended up being a bit too shallow. So, I'm not sure if I ever had SMB recruitment. I've caught a lot of SMB, and they, for the most part, look very healthy with swollen bellies. All my fish were stocked between April and October 2015. Not sure when I'll have a SMB big enough to keep. Well, I guess I could keep, a few now, but I like the length goals listed in Bill's post of 16" or larger. Maybe I'll see one by this next fall. So far I've kept 100s of YP. But I over stocked a little, so I'm pretty sure I have extras.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/30/16 08:45 PM
Setter, when I built my pond I cut 55gal drums into sections about 8"s. I'd read that they prefer 2-4' depth so that is where I placed them with about 5"s of gravel in em. I also put one or two basketball sized boulders near them. Found out that I have a ground water level pond and the water level varies from 20-30'. I've had good recruitment from the first spring I put the SMB in. Last yr when I came back from Fl in early May I found one bedding in about 10"s of water on my sand beach. Got a feeling you will have enough of em.
Posted By: SetterGuy Re: On Mutt Pond - 01/01/17 06:21 PM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Setter, when I built my pond I cut 55gal drums into sections about 8"s. I'd read that they prefer 2-4' depth so that is where I placed them with about 5"s of gravel in em. I also put one or two basketball sized boulders near them. Found out that I have a ground water level pond and the water level varies from 20-30'. I've had good recruitment from the first spring I put the SMB in. Last yr when I came back from Fl in early May I found one bedding in about 10"s of water on my sand beach. Got a feeling you will have enough of em.

I have the exact same problem with my SMB beds. I put them at various depths because I wasn't sure about what I was doing. Now I have a pond that fluctuates about three feet. Right now the SMB beds are near the surface, or already exposed.
Fortunately or unfortunately, my pond base has a lot of rock mixed in with the clay. I suspect there's lots of places for them to spawn, if they want to. Of course, all that rock has more than likely contributed to my small leak..
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 01/07/17 02:34 AM
Bob and SetterGuy,

Thanks for the posts. Sorry for the late reply.

Looks like we have similar ponds in many respects. My pond is also a watertable pond with large water fluctuations. When they dug my pond we hit river rock, gravel and sand mix from about 6 feet to the bottom. Above that was the same but some clay mixed in for about 3 feet with black topsoil in the top 3 feet. I think there is plenty of good spawning areas for my SMB. Maybe if I can get the ratio of SMB to LMB high enough in the favor of the SMB they will spawn?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 01/14/17 02:18 AM
I posted these questions awhile back and I'm still working on answers....


Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Iím now wondering whether my PS spawning may actually be a necessity in providing enough forage as we move into 2017. I also have a few GSH (stable small population) and stocked in 2016 SFS, BNM and PSC in the pond. I also supplemental feed pellets (This spring it will be Optimal BG chow)

Questions:

1) Do PS stay more active as the water cools than the BG do; maybe making the PS perhaps more elusive with a better chance at recruitment?

2) I would think the SMB and WE will also target small SMB and YP. Can BG and PS together provide enough additional forage for the predators I have with good management of predator numbers?

3) Should I stock more adult BG?

4) Should I start harvesting some of the larger YP?

Any suggestions or comments would be appreciated! smile



I've been doing some research and I THINK I might have an answer to question 1.

While both BG and PS are considered "warm water" species, their temperature tolerance ranges overlap. BG have a greater tolerance to warmer waters but PS have a greater tolerance to cooler waters. This makes me consider that small PS might be more active in cooler waters than small BG; making PS less susceptible to predation by cool water predators in early spring and late fall than small BG.

Anybody have any thoughts, experience or comments they can share?

Posted By: Bill Cody Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 01/14/17 05:09 PM
""that small PS might be more active in cooler waters than small BG; making PS less susceptible to predation by cool water predators in early spring and late fall than small BG."" As a general rule you are partly correct. However amount of habitat, prey density, and normal behavior of the smaller PS-BG(prey) will make a difference as to how frequently the predator species encounters the prey. Each species of forage & predator tends to behave differently which is partly why it is a different species. Most meat eating predators are mostly opportunistic feeders - eating what they encounter most often and vulnerability of the prey item. The ecosystem is very complex and not generally mathematical nor black & white, nor simple - not yet until someone figures it out.

Your other questions are interesting and I am interested in what you find as answers. Keep us informed as your research progresses.

My initial answer to No2. is it depends on how many predators and PS-BG you have per area of water. IMO it is all about density, numbers balance, and habitat which applies to both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 01/14/17 09:49 PM
Thanks for the advice Bill. Makes a lot of sense. Like your answer to question 2, I think it may not be possible to answer the other 3 questions either at this time. Seems to me the answers will depend on the same factors you listed for question 2 as well as other factors such as capacity, available spawning habitat, etc. I see now I lack sufficient species population/size data on my particular pond to answer the questions. I need to do a lot more sampling. Sampling methods available to me are minnow traps and the patented Cody angling survey via small hook and chair. Sounds like a good/interesting activity for when the hard water is gone.

I will also be following the predator harvest plan discussed a few posts back.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 01/14/17 10:35 PM
I can advise about #4. Depending on your goals for the YP, you could be harvesting some of the YP(10"-12") as soon as your sampling indicates there are good numbers of 6"-8" perch available to fill in for those larger YP that are harvested. Other option would be to harvest the larger YP and just ladder stock more 5"-7" YP. Smaller ladder stocked YP than 5" could be food for your predators that are increasing in size! Check out the width & height of the body on a 5" YP - not much of a mouthful for a 13"+ bass.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 01/15/17 01:02 AM
Thanks for taking the time to help me think thru this Bill. I know I have at least 3 LMB 16+ and one bigger than that. (Just a reminder to those that think 3 or 4 LMB is no big deal, Mutt Pond is on average only about 1/2 acre).

Based on fishing the summer of 2016 and visually observing the fish I saw while walking around the pond in the fall (once the bloom had died back and I could see), I have no significant recruitment from any species. The fish are definitely reproducing, as I do see many small fish in the 1 to 3 inch size, IMO you are correct and there is just too much predation. The vast majority of fish we've caught or seen were probably the original stockers. I do see a few LMB recruits in the 8 to 10 inch size class. I'm sure there must be at least a few recruits from the BG and YP but not enough to notice.

What do you think if I set my top 2 priorities in 2017 as removal of all CC caught and removal of all LMB 10 inches and over? My thinking (right or wrong) is the SMB, YP and WE do not have as much impact on the forage as the apex CC and LMB. Should I also harvest 14 inch or over WE and SMB?


What do you (or other members) think?
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: BG as forage for SMB, WE and YP? - 01/15/17 02:33 AM
BillD asks -"What do you think if I set my top 2 priorities in 2017 as removal of all CC caught and removal of all LMB 10 inches and over?"

That would be my goal if I had your fish community to manage. For your mixed fish community and since you and your wife like to eat fish, once WE are at 14+" and considering how difficult they are to dependably catch, I would remove everyone 14"+ that I caught. Restock smaller ones who eat small fish due to WE mouth size. As long as you see small SMB (6"-8"), I would harvest those larger ones of 14"-15". Remember the main Pond Boss Lusk preaches is harvest, harvest to maintain a healthy, viable well growing, balanced fishery. Keep in mind your goals and manage toward those goals.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 01/29/17 02:14 AM
Thanks Bill, as always, for the sage advice,

We just ladder stocked a half dozen 6 to 8 inch SMB last summer. We have a very good source for as many of those as we want so I have decided to stop worrying about our SMB providing recruits. I will ladder stock some WE this fall as well if the harvest is good. I am quite sure my bride is going to be thrilled this spring when I tell her we can harvest so many LMB, SMB and WE for table fare. If I remember (50% chance!), I will post some pics of some of the Thai dishes she prepares from the bounty.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 02/05/17 01:18 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: John F
Originally Posted By: poppy65
There ya go Bill. Those small CC with the bone in taste better than the large fillets to me. Down here we call them "fiddlers". Not sure if that is a regional thing or not. A local tavern/restaurant has served fried fiddlers as far back as I can remember and I always get them instead of the fillets.


We call small CC (usually under one lb) fiddlers here in Arkansas too.
The small ones make a croaking noise when held to remove a hook.


You guys are making me hungry! I've never heard the little guys called Fiddlers before but I like it!

I wish there was a good place near me that served them. IMO Only thing better than a restaurant that serves good "Fiddlers" is one that serves them all you can eat! smile


Wednesday I had a business breakfast meeting at a restaurant 10 minutes from my house. An old friend of mine sat next to me and we started talking about fishing (Business meeting right! smile ). He told me that the restaurant we were in served great all you can eat catfish on the bone on Fridays! Fiddlers here I come!
Posted By: Bill D. Criteria for culling fish during harvest - 03/13/17 12:45 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
BillD asks -"What do you think if I set my top 2 priorities in 2017 as removal of all CC caught and removal of all LMB 10 inches and over?"

That would be my goal if I had your fish community to manage. For your mixed fish community and since you and your wife like to eat fish, once WE are at 14+" and considering how difficult they are to dependably catch, I would remove everyone 14"+ that I caught. Restock smaller ones who eat small fish due to WE mouth size. As long as you see small SMB (6"-8"), I would harvest those larger ones of 14"-15". Remember the main Pond Boss Lusk preaches is harvest, harvest to maintain a healthy, viable well growing, balanced fishery. Keep in mind your goals and manage toward those goals.


Interesting discussion the last few days on the forum about using other criteria along with Relative Weight and size in determining whether a fish should be harvested or returned to the pond. Specifically, what is the 100% Rw of MY pond and desirable physical attributes to watch for, both good and bad. Although I know I will need to remove the largest predators, I will be adding this management tool as I move into the 2017 harvest when considering harvest of predators under 14 inches.

For those interested, here is a link to that discussion.

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=466527#Post466527

Also a good discussion on establishing slot limits for culling/harvest

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=466461#Post466461
Posted By: Bill D. Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/20/17 10:39 PM
Got into the 50's here today so I told my bride I was gonna hit the pond and see if I could catch a fish. Water is in the low 40's so I wasn't that hopeful that they'd be very active yet. First cast of the new year got this little 16 inch 2lb 6oz lady. She looks in good condition to me for being just coming off winter. What do you guys think?





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Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/20/17 11:33 PM
Good looking fish at this time of year. healthy looking.
Posted By: stickem' Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/20/17 11:59 PM
Very nice, Bill.....she appears to be a healthy one. I think the last 16"er I caught was around 2 lbs. You throw her back?
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 12:27 AM
Fish looks good!! Now the dude.......well, I'm feelin nice tonight so never mind.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 12:48 AM
Originally Posted By: Dave Davidson1
Good looking fish at this time of year. healthy looking.


Thanks Dave. I think we might actually be making some progress. smile
Posted By: farmallsc Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 12:49 AM
Way to go, Bill!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 12:54 AM
Originally Posted By: stickem'
Very nice, Bill.....she appears to be a healthy one. I think the last 16"er I caught was around 2 lbs. You throw her back?


Thanks Charlie,

I have to admit I was torn whether to keep or release. Then I remembered Bob L's comments on attributes of a "keeper," other than Rw, and she had them all in spades. I don't recall ever catching a fish as thick across the shoulders as this one. Sooo...she went back. I didn't calculate Rw but I have to believe she is OK in that category.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 12:56 AM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Fish looks good!! Now the dude.......well, I'm feelin nice tonight so never mind.


I agree Bob. Shady looking character. I found him peeing behind the pump house and made him hold the fish while I snapped the pic! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 12:57 AM
Originally Posted By: farmallsc
Way to go, Bill!


Thanks man! I'm looking forward to seeing pics of your fish in the future!
Posted By: Ben Adducchio Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 01:49 AM
That is a nice LMB coming off winter, I calculate RW at 105.52%. My LMB probably look like Bob-o in a speed-o.
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 02:59 AM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Fish looks good!! Now the dude.......well, I'm feelin nice tonight so never mind.

Good looking dude just coming off winter! My bad.... good looking fish I mean
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 03/21/17 11:52 AM
Bill, she was more than OK ! Glad to see u released her back in the pond. I would be willing to guess, she will just get better. Got a name for her, you should, it might be harder to see her over rice if she has a name lol
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 03/22/17 12:20 AM
Originally Posted By: Ben Adducchio
That is a nice LMB coming off winter, I calculate RW at 105.52%. My LMB probably look like Bob-o in a speed-o.


Thanks for running the numbers Ben! Hopefully, your LMB have a little more fashion sense than Bob O! grin

Originally Posted By: Pat Williamson
Good looking dude just coming off winter! My bad.... good looking fish I mean


Pat, The fish is in way better shape than the old dude!

Originally Posted By: TGW1
Bill, she was more than OK ! Glad to see u released her back in the pond. I would be willing to guess, she will just get better. Got a name for her, you should, it might be harder to see her over rice if she has a name lol


Tracy,

Her name is Lucky Lucy. Lucky because I told my bride, Nattha, that the fish was ďpregnantĒ or she just might have been dinner last night. Lucy's chances of survival will drop dramatically if Nattha catches her post spawn!

We know we need to harvest LMB this year. There are just too many Lucy's size and larger for my little puddle. Hopefully, even if we catch her later, by letting her spawn she can at least pass along her genetics.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 03/22/17 03:02 AM
Ben, your fish will never look so frightening. As for fashion sense, it's the lack of common sense that worries me.
Posted By: Bill D. Battling Geese! - 05/05/17 02:50 AM
Update....It has been a LONG spring for us battling the geese. Last year we had two pair and they and their goslings returned this year. I am learning the ropes on control slowly but surely. Loud noises are effective for one or two days. Most effective thing I've found is waiting until the adults and goslings are grazing far enough from the pond that I can sneak in on the JD X585 tractor between them and the pond and herd them all into the thickets. They HATE that! Opening and closing the FEL when chasing them seems to be a plus. I also installed 4 flashing amber lights today in an effort to annoy them if they sneak back after dark. Jury is out on the results.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 05/12/17 12:43 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Update.... I also installed 4 flashing amber lights today in an effort to annoy them if they sneak back after dark. Jury is out on the results.


Jury is still out on the flashing lights but we no longer wake up to geese on the pond that have sneaked in after dark. Maybe they are working. The lights I bought are solar powered and extremely well constructed. Maybe the cost of 4 lights for $185 delivered was worth it...still getting random geese dropping in during the day though. Must be last years goslings that are too young too nest.
Posted By: Bill D. Battling Geese - 05/16/17 01:39 AM
Update...

Pros of the lights:

They are low profile and you barely even notice them around the pond in daylight.

Cons of the lights:

Although well constructed, they cannot hold up to a blast from a 410.

Don't ask me how I know but, I ordered a replacement light today! blush
Posted By: snrub Re: Battling Geese - 05/16/17 02:12 AM
Thanks for the update Bill. I have wondered how well they worked.
Posted By: SetterGuy Re: Battling Geese - 05/16/17 03:16 PM
I need a 410. I can only imagine how that would feel, when you blasted that light though. Two years ago I tried to pull of a three point turn on the downslope to the pond, in wet grass, on my lawn tractor. The front wheels were In the water before I finally gave up and went for the UTV to pull it out. I guess I'm saying, if I had geese lights, I might know what it feels like to shoot one. wink
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/18/17 02:04 AM
Thanks for the feedback SG. Definitely not my finest hour! Shortly after I bagged the light from the deck with the 410 we got hit by a storm with 3/4 inch hail. All the lights worked when it got dark except my trophy. I walked down the next morning to retrieve my wounded goose warrior and found zero damage. Took it up to the house and cycled the switch in the closet and it started flashing! Good news is, a spare light is on the way for the next time I go light hunting! smile
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/18/17 09:56 AM
Bill, that's the kind of dumb stunt that is a part of my life.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 05/19/17 01:38 AM
Thanks for the input Dave. You have to admit though, it keeps life interesting! smile

I just read in a post that Catmando is working to perfect the art of fly fishing for snakes. Maybe I'll try that next! grin
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 05/29/17 12:47 AM
We have some friends coming to visit so my bride said we need to start harvest early this year so she can prepare one of her Thai recipes. Walking around the pond I can see way more LMB than I thought we have and 3 size classes so I didn't feel bad harvesting a gravid female.

The LMB weighed 2 lb 14 oz and was 16.5 inches.

The SMB was in what I consider poor condition which I attribute to something wrong with its lower jaw. Maybe GBH damage.

The PS (7 inch) got caught accidentally off his nest and was gut hooked. He is dead in the photo. His spawning colors were much more vibrant when first caught. I saw one PS male on the nest today that has red coloration mixed over his entire body...Beautiful!





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Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese - 05/31/17 02:08 AM
Update....I am extremely happy to report that I haven't seen a goose poop machine on the pond since my last post on this subject. I estimate my FA has been reduced by 80% compared to this time last year. Not saying the war is won but maybe I've actually won a battle against these critters! I'm hoping they have settled in to molt somewhere else and I can relax for 6 weeks or so.... smile
Posted By: Bill D. Feeding On Mutt Pond - 06/27/17 02:28 AM
Update to keep this thread current....I am now feeding 200% of what I was feeding before I started hydrating the Optimal BG chow. The fish finished in 3.5 minutes tonight. Lots of YP showing up now as well as more BG, and, of course, my 4 or 5 CC. Looks like I will need to bump the amount again. I only want to supplemental feed so I will work towards feeding what is consumed in 5 minutes once a day.

Thanks again guys for turning me on to the hydrating strategy. I swear I can actually see the fish growing every day!...I also hydrate the 3 mm Skretting I feed the tiny guys and they really appreciate it! (I think the little guys would actually prefer the Optimal BG Jr but there is no way I would feed 50 lbs in my small pond in a season. I sure hope they come out with smaller bags for us small pond owners!)
Posted By: Bill D. CC Recruits! - 09/22/17 11:56 AM
Finally had a chance to do a little fishing in the pond yesterday. I was very surprised when I caught a 6 to 7 inch CC, especially considering the number and variety of predators in our little puddle. I stocked a couple three years ago and the few originals are at least 6 pounds+. This spring I caught a 14 inch and now this little guy. I assume this means my CC have found suitable spawning habitat and actually managed to provide a small number of recruits. Would this 6 inch one be from this year's spawn or last year's? Anybody else have CC recruits in their small ponds?
Posted By: Matzilla Re: CC Recruits! - 09/22/17 04:32 PM
Last years fry should be 6" right now I believe
Posted By: Bill D. Re: CC Recruits! - 09/24/17 12:01 AM
Originally Posted By: Matzilla
Last years fry should be 6" right now I believe


Thanks for the input. I was thinking the 14 incher was a year old and the 6 incher was this year. I was under the impression that CC grow really fast but it sounds like that is not true?
Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: CC Recruits! - 09/24/17 03:03 AM
With feeding, they should be 12 to 14 inches in a year from spawn, from what I have researched. Even bigger is likely with satiation feeding. That six incher could be a stunted one from a late spawn last year, or a shooter from an early spawn this season. I had at least one go from a nine inch stocker in September of 2015 to a fat 22.5" five pounder when caught in June of this year. I don't know if I have recruits for sure or just a couple of really badly stunted ones. Have seen a couple approx. 13 inch CC this summer, actually caught one of them. I put four adult CC in the pond winter of '15-'16, all four albino.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: CC Recruits! - 09/27/17 03:34 PM
Thanks for the input John. Sounds logical.
Posted By: Bill D. Fishing Mutt Pond 2017 - 09/27/17 03:38 PM
My bride caught this little gal this morning on a 3 inch BG for bait. 19.25 inch and 2 lb 7 oz. Very happy too see the WE are doing ok!



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Posted By: snrub Re: CC Recruits! - 09/28/17 03:19 AM
Bill I caught a couple 6" and one 12" CC today. I have multiple year classes of CC from spawn.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: CC Recruits! - 10/02/17 09:06 PM
Thanks for the info Snrub. Seems whether CC recruit in small ponds with predators is one of those "It Depends" and not an absolute that it won't happen.
Posted By: John Fitzgerald Re: CC Recruits! - 10/02/17 09:19 PM
Yes, I think it very much "depends".
Posted By: snrub Re: CC Recruits! - 10/02/17 09:50 PM
I'm kind of light on predators, or at least it seems that way. I know I have LMB out there because others have caught 5# sizes, but I fish mostly for BG and never catch any small LMB.

I'm not much of an angler, but I would think I would catch some smaller LMB fishing for BG. At least I used to when the pond was only a year or two old.
Posted By: Bill D. Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 10/17/17 11:47 PM
Our walleye are now reaching that 19 to 20 inch size when they start to add girth and put on the weight more than the length and I want to help them along if need be.




This summer we had two rain events that resulted in losing 100s if not 1000s of small BG and PS due to overflow. Should I be considering adding some GSH or other forage now as additional winter forage for the WE as well as the SMB, LMB, etc? How big a GSH can a 19 inch WE eat? How big a BG can it eat? I know they will eat a lot less during the winter but I don't want them to lose weight if possible. Thanks in advance for any thoughts!
Posted By: ewest Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 10/18/17 02:29 PM
Every pond has a capacity to hold/grow fish. That amount can be augmented often by feeding or fertilization (if needed). But whatever the capacity amount, the fish will fill it with their kind if possible. The time period post initial fish stocking with small fish for a pond to reach capacity depends on several factors (water temp , location , growing season length and food available among others) but usually ranges from 18 mths and 2 years. In many cases when adult fish are present there is no more room for more fish (at capacity). When an event occurs (partial winter kill or DO event, failed spawn , over harvest, etc.) there will be more room for a short time before the remaining fish fill the space. These events can result in unbalanced fish populations. To make an informed choice one needs to have a good feel of what is left and how that/those fish fit into the plan. For example if conditions are right BG can often fill the void quickly. If those conditions do not exist (cold water) then the void will be filled by the next available fish to spawn or some combination. Keep in mind that with very small fish (yoy) natural mortalities are very high. In a several acre pond with an established BG population the loss of 10,000 small yoy BG is not a big factor. If the BG and other fish are fed it becomes even less of an issue.

Depending on goals and current status the existing BG may have already replaced the loss. If you are concerned then try to determine your current status first then decided whether to add fish. If it is just a food issue for one winter than adult FH can help the small WE.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 10/19/17 12:18 AM
Thanks for the input Eric! Here is some more info.

The two high water events this summer came after BG first spawn and after BG second spawn. My concern about not having enough winter forage comes from observation that I don't see the large schools of small BG around the pond now that I have seen in years past at this time of year.

My pond is small so I can add forage for winter without a huge expense. I asked about mouth gap of a 20 inch WE as I want to add appropriate size forage if I do add some. I considered just dropping several pounds of FHM but was concerned they are really too small for that size WE. There are also SMB and LMB in the 14 to 16 inch size to consider.

My thought was GSH (3 to 5 inch) might be a more appropriate size forage than FHM to add if I decide to add. Would GSH be a better "fit" mouth gap wise or would FHM be better? How big a GSH can a 20 inch WE eat? Can they handle 4 inch BG?
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 10/19/17 12:48 AM
A 20" walleye can eat a 6"-7" GSH although the 4"-5" is more appropriate for walleye. Walleye can eat a decent amount of small fish during winter; probably 4-6 for each WE per week. I've caught 19" winter WE with two YP 3" in their gut. BG - expect those WE 19"+ to eat mostly 3"-4" BG.
Posted By: ewest Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 10/19/17 05:44 PM
Bill are you just trying to get to next spring or are you wanting to establish a GS population? I would wait to add the GS as long as water temps allow this fall. The idea is to add them once the LMB slow down due to temps. This will allow the WE to eat more. Same if you try to add small BG.As Bill noted WE & YP will eat small GS and BG over winter. I would shoot for 4 inch GS and 3 inch BG. I have concerns on trying to establish GS long term with many hatchery raised GS. They are great for forage.
This is how a (fresh water clams) adult size that you need to know

Hi, guys, I have taken a video of Fresh water clam adult size, have a look at https://youtu.be/ZLyR39U8VEA they are good additional live filter media for your biological filtration system
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 10/22/17 11:05 AM
Originally Posted By: ewest
Bill are you just trying to get to next spring or are you wanting to establish a GS population? I would wait to add the GS as long as water temps allow this fall. The idea is to add them once the LMB slow down due to temps. This will allow the WE to eat more. Same if you try to add small BG.As Bill noted WE & YP will eat small GS and BG over winter. I would shoot for 4 inch GS and 3 inch BG. I have concerns on trying to establish GS long term with many hatchery raised GS. They are great for forage.


Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
A 20" walleye can eat a 6"-7" GSH although the 4"-5" is more appropriate for walleye. Walleye can eat a decent amount of small fish during winter; probably 4-6 for each WE per week. I've caught 19" winter WE with two YP 3" in their gut. BG - expect those WE 19"+ to eat mostly 3"-4" BG.


Thanks for the inputs guys! The thought is to just provide additional winter forage although I may add more in the spring if it looks like I need it while I wait for the BG and PS to spawn.

I checked with the hatchery and they can provide both GSH (3 to 5 inch) and FHM in mid November once the water cools more. The pond is down quite a bit from being full most of the summer, roughly now about .4 to .5 acre. I'm thinking I will add 10lbs of both FHM and GSH. I figure the FHM should be good for the YP (10 to 12 inch) and smaller bass.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 11/07/17 01:29 AM
Update .....Water temp was mid 40s at 26 inch depth so we went ahead and stocked the FHM and GSH. While we acclimated and sorted, I hooked a GSH up under a cork for my bride and she quickly caught a nice little 13 to 14 inch smallie.

After releasing the forage, I noted the YP and SMB showed up to hammer the FHM which stayed in "balls" around the shore. Only saw a couple LMB but I'm sure they also joined the feast. The GSH headed immediately for deeper open water and I haven't seen them since.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 11/14/17 01:25 AM
Well a couple days after stocking the forage a Kingfisher showed up and has been spending everyday taking advantage of the newbies. I figure he has been taking 3 or 4 a day. Not a lot but still.....

This morning we had a skin of ice over the pond. Kingfisher showed up. As I watched he made a dive and kind of bounced off the ice. I laughed my butt off! ....He left shortly after. Ice was gone this evening so I expect he will be back tomorrow. frown
Posted By: snrub Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 11/14/17 01:56 AM
That is funny! laugh

You would have thought the bird would have known about ice. I guess he does now.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 11/14/17 01:00 PM
It was a weird bounce. Kind of like he saw the ice at the last second and tried to throw on the brakes. Ice cover is back again this morning but I'm sure it won't last.
Posted By: snrub Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 11/14/17 04:20 PM
Keep it up there. We are still trying to get out the last fourth of our soybean crop. Weather just will not cooperate. Cloudy almost every day and mist every second or third day. Definitely not combining weather. Kind of forgot what the sun looks like it has been so long since we have seen it. Dreary fall pre-winter weather.

Bluegill have been biting good though in the cold water. wink
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Walleye mouthgap. Add winter forage? - 11/14/17 11:15 PM
Hope your beans are doing better than the ones in the fields around here did. We went a couple months with no rain. I saw some on a truck not much bigger than BBs.

Send us your rain! Our pond is a couple feet low still.
Posted By: Bill D. Kingfisher! - 12/04/17 02:09 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Well a couple days after stocking the forage a Kingfisher showed up and has been spending everyday taking advantage of the newbies. I figure he has been taking 3 or 4 a day. Not a lot but still.....

This morning we had a skin of ice over the pond. Kingfisher showed up. As I watched he made a dive and kind of bounced off the ice. I laughed my butt off! ....He left shortly after. Ice was gone this evening so I expect he will be back tomorrow. frown


Update...What a mess! I thought geese were bad. The entire south side of the pump house roof and the canoe on the boat rack under that are white with Kingfisher crap. They apparently spray their offerings! He was taking a fish every couple of hours then exploding! I have spent the last week or so harassing him every time he shows up. He hates it when my old dog, 410, barks at him! grin Only seen him once in the last couple of days....maybe I'm winning the battle! smile Good news is temp is supposed to drop here this week so maybe we will get some ice cover.
Posted By: snrub Re: Kingfisher! - 12/04/17 03:27 AM
I had no idea they were such messy birds.
Posted By: djstauder Re: Kingfisher! - 12/04/17 02:41 PM
I have a couple of 6 ft. free-standing plant hooks around my pond where I used to put hanging feeders that the kingfishers seem to like. I can't say I've noticed any of the mess that you state, though. I'll have to take a closer look
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Kingfisher! - 12/04/17 04:15 PM
Maybe this will give you an idea of the mess. He perches on the pump house and swoops down and grabs a fish. Then it's back to the pump house to beat the fish on the roof and then swallow it whole. Then he leaves me a little present!



Attached File
Kingfisher Mess2.jpg  (499 downloads)
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/04/17 04:31 PM
Bill it looks like seagull mess! Good thing it's on the opposite Side of the house view
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Kingfisher! - 12/04/17 10:15 PM
Unfortunately Pat, he enjoys painting both sides of the roof. frown

One thing for sure..he must have a high muzzle velocity with that gun! You can see in the pic, he can shoot a couple feet easy!
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/04/17 10:54 PM
Jet propulsion at its best....
Posted By: snrub Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/05/17 04:50 AM
You might try some monofiliment line stretched end to end above the peak of the roof a few inches. Something to keep him from perching on the peak.
Posted By: djstauder Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/05/17 01:40 PM
Bill, that picture is hilarious... probably not if it was mine though! The kingfishers I see must go somewhere else to poop.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Kingfisher! - 12/05/17 05:55 PM
Gives us just one more reason to hope for rain! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Winter aeration and well water - 12/30/17 01:27 AM
One of the things folks are concerned about when aerating during the winter is super chilling the water. I only aerate during the winter when we have snow cover or thick opaque ice and then I still try to do it only on "warm" days. In the spirit of Mutt Pond, I decided I would try something a little different this year in an effort to mitigate the potential for super chilling the water. Just thought I would share the experience in case others can benefit.

Our winter diffuser is in 3 to 4 feet of water now as the pond is roughly 3 feet below full pool. It is located such that it's in the path where water from the well enters the pond. My idea is to add the "warm" (50 F 35 gpm) well water while running the diffuser. The goal is to minimize the drop in temperature of the pond, in the absence of the insulating ice layer, while the pond surface water is exposed to the frigid air during aeration. We had a one day heat wave today (got to 14) so I gave it a try before the temps drop back to below zero. Although I did not measure water temps, I can report that the hole opened by the diffuser was significantly larger than in the past and, as the water rose from the well input, it came out on top of the ice and cleared a much larger area of snow.

My concern is that I'm adding essentially zero DO water from the well which seems counterproductive to the goal of winter aeration but hopefully as the water enters over a 4 cfm diffuser that is insignificant.
Posted By: snrub Re: Winter aeration and well water - 12/30/17 12:59 PM
Is there a way, perhaps with a venturi in line, you could introduce air into the well water flow into the pond?

A small air tube introducing air bubbles into the water flow at the point of the venturi. The venturi drawing air into the water line much like a small engine carburetor draws gasoline into the air flow at the point of the venturi at the carburetor???

Or, lacking a venturi mechanism, installing a "T" in the water line after the pump and introducing air with another aeration pump or diverting some air from your existing air pump.
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Winter aeration and well water - 12/30/17 01:39 PM
I agree with snrub when it comes to adding a venturi air system into your water line. A 3 or 4" long peace of pipe with a qtr inch ID can be inserted into the water line at a 90 degree angle will add air to the water. Adjust the small pipe until you feel a suction with your finger tip. I have mine set up about 10 feet from the end of the water line. I can see the difference in the water stream when comparing with or without the small pipe. I also have some 12" rocks that the water hits and causes water to splash into the pond. Bill, I am sure (based on my reading your post for the last 3 yrs or so) you can do this smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Winter aeration and well water - 12/31/17 01:15 AM
I like the venturi idea guys! Problem would be incorporating it into the existing setup. Not saying it can't be done but would not be a quick/easy project. The line from the well is buried 42 inches deep (below the frost line) and enters the pond under water; currently about 3 feet down. We are near low pool so the water will rise 3 or 4 feet more at full pool. As John suggested, another option would be to inject air before the line leaves the basement but the line pressure is 70 psig at that point so I would need an oil free compressor capable of higher pressure.

The question remains...is what I'm doing now by passing the well flow thru the diffuser "good enough" or is it causing a problem with low DO? Another question is, and probably more relevant, am I really gaining anything at all as far as mitigating super chilling by using the well water to "warm" the pond water locally during aeration? Thoughts?
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Winter aeration and well water - 12/31/17 12:23 PM
Gallons per inch verses GPM. It would take a lot of water to effect water temps, I would think. More likely to effect DO first, Don't u think?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Winter aeration and well water - 01/01/18 12:10 AM
Thanks for the input Tracy!

I think you're probably right. In 6 hours I add 12000+ gallons of well water which is a tiny percentage of the pond capacity. It probably has insignificant impact on either temp or DO. The one thing it does do for sure is raises the water level just enough (benefit of a small pond) to get water out on top of the ice more and clear a larger area of snow than that provided by aeration alone. I don't aerate that often during the winter but I'll go ahead and use the well when I do to see if there are any bad effects.
Posted By: DrWizz Re: Winter aeration and well water - 01/02/18 04:03 AM
I have read several times on the forum that well water has no dissolved oxygen in it. I had the opportunity to visit Gavin's Point national fish hatchery in South Dakota last summer and noticed something that made me wonder if some well water may have significant amounts of DO. They had a run that was about three feet wide and 50 feet long with Rainbow trout in it. At one end there was a pipe pumping water into the run at high volume. It was sub surface and no turbulence on the surface or airation was going on. I asked the fisheries biologist where the water was coming from and he said it was well water and had not been processed or airated.

If you Google DO in well water, there are several publications discussing the issue, and it sounds like there can be significant DO in well water depending on the well.

Just wondering if a person could measure the DO in the well water to see if it needed airation prior to being pumped into a pond?
Posted By: Bocomo Re: Winter aeration and well water - 01/02/18 04:05 AM
Originally Posted By: DrWizz

Just wondering if a person could measure the DO in the well water to see if it needed airation prior to being pumped into a pond?


You definitely can. You need a portable DO meter, though.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Winter aeration and well water - 01/06/18 02:28 AM
Originally Posted By: DrWizz
I have read several times on the forum that well water has no dissolved oxygen in it. I had the opportunity to visit Gavin's Point national fish hatchery in South Dakota last summer and noticed something that made me wonder if some well water may have significant amounts of DO. They had a run that was about three feet wide and 50 feet long with Rainbow trout in it. At one end there was a pipe pumping water into the run at high volume. It was sub surface and no turbulence on the surface or airation was going on. I asked the fisheries biologist where the water was coming from and he said it was well water and had not been processed or airated.

If you Google DO in well water, there are several publications discussing the issue, and it sounds like there can be significant DO in well water depending on the well.

Just wondering if a person could measure the DO in the well water to see if it needed airation prior to being pumped into a pond?


Thanks for the input Doc. Very interesting reading on Google.

Does anybody know of a single use DO test kit? Spending a few hundred dollars on a DO meter is not an option for what would be a one time use to check my well.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Winter aeration and well water - 01/06/18 02:51 PM
I did a little Googling and found that there are DO test kits available at a reasonable price. Anybody used one or have a recommendation?
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Winter aeration and well water - 01/06/18 04:18 PM
There are chemical test kits that are accurate to measure dissolved oxygen depending on how well you collect the sample. The way you collect the sample can diffuse more oxygen into the sample. Here are two good quality DO test kits.

https://pentairaes.com/lamotte-dissolved-oxygen-test-kit.html?msclkid=04b917a4cd621582951e4df43574b54c&utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=(ROI)%20Pentair%20AES%20-%20Shopping%20-%20Desktop&utm_term=4584826048954002&utm_content=Water%20Quality%20Testing

http://www.lamotte.com/en/aquarium-fish-farming/individual-test-kits/5860-01.html


http://www.forestry-suppliers.com/product_pages/products.php?mi=33281&itemnum=78052&redir=Y

There may be good simple chemical test kits available at good aquarium supply stores. Research testing kits before purchasing them, as some are known to produce flawed results when used in conjunction with other chemicals and water treatments.

I learned and used the standard chemical method in college and later kits that were similar to the chemical method for measuring DO. The name for the chemical method for measuring DO is called the Winkler Method. The Winkler method is/was used as a standard test to check the accuracy of a DO meter.
Full description of the Winkler method.
https://serc.carleton.edu/microbelife/research_methods/environ_sampling/oxygen.html
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Winter aeration and well water - 01/09/18 11:59 PM
Thanks for the info Bill. Sounds like collection and handling of the sample are key to an accurate result. I think I will order a kit and give it a try next summer. I'll report back the results.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Winter aeration and well water - 01/10/18 12:32 AM
When you bubble water into a bottle it diffuses extra oxygen into the sample. I am not sure how much DO in ppm is added to the water when water is bubbled into the collection jar. Ideally the water is supposed to be collected with a device (Kemmerer or Van Dorn sampler) that underwater it entraps water & a 'messenger' on the rope closes the container. Sampler is then raised to the surface and water is let out the bottom through a tube into the measuring or testing container. Water is filled into the testing container from the bottom to the top and overflowed. The process minimizes water contact with air.

If the sampling bottle is held side wise and water is gently drained into the bottle without bubbling, this should provide decent results.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 03/07/18 12:48 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Update.... I also installed 4 flashing amber lights today in an effort to annoy them if they sneak back after dark. Jury is out on the results.


Jury is still out on the flashing lights but we no longer wake up to geese on the pond that have sneaked in after dark. Maybe they are working. The lights I bought are solar powered and extremely well constructed. Maybe the cost of 4 lights for $185 delivered was worth it...still getting random geese dropping in during the day though. Must be last years goslings that are too young too nest.


Update on my flashing yellow lights as a geese deterrent. My understanding is the lights are supposed to make the geese think a potential predator is nearby and prevent them from staying at the pond at night.

As dawn was breaking over the pond this morning, I noticed a pair of geese....camped out next to one of the lights!! frown I will give it a few more months but I think this experiment is going to be a failure. I wish the lights were adjustable with respect to intensity and frequency of flash. Maybe that would make a difference????
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 03/31/18 12:14 AM
Another update on the flashing yellow lights....

Since that one occurrence of geese on the pond at day break, no more have spent the night on the pond. Perhaps the lights are working or at least helping.

The lights do nothing of course with respect to geese dropping by during the day. Those leave right away though when my old dog 410 barks at them. grin
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 03/31/18 12:55 AM
Well knock me over and call me Bob O!

Almost dark here and a pair of geese dropped into the pond. A few minutes later the flashing yellow light sensors kicked them on. A couple minutes later the geese left!

I'll keep updating this post for a couple more months. Hopefully, folks thinking about investing in flashing yellow lights will benefit from my little experiment. Just as a recap, my 4 lights are solar powered and cost around $40 each.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Battling Geese! - 03/31/18 03:10 PM
Excuse me but is that first line meant to imply that I'm horizontal too often?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 03/31/18 07:09 PM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Excuse me but is that first line meant to imply that I'm horizontal too often?


Of course not!

Hadn't seen you posting lately so thought I would just "chum the water" a little to see if you would rise to the bait! grin
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Battling Geese! - 04/01/18 12:04 AM
Some suckers will always rise to the bait. Been busy dodgin the Blue hairs down here. They can't resist the camo speedo,
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Battling Geese! - 04/01/18 01:28 AM
Glad you back in the game Bob-O
Posted By: 4CornersPuddle Re: Battling Geese! - 04/01/18 02:37 AM
Bill D. Nice work rattlin' up the Bob-O. I'd been considering pm-ing you to see if you had any idea where he was sleeping.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Battling Geese! - 04/01/18 09:03 PM
Hell 4 corners, most the time I don't know where I'm sleepin or where I'm at when I wake up.
Posted By: FireIsHot Re: Battling Geese! - 04/03/18 09:37 PM
Glad you're back Bob-O.

ďLife should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!Ē HS Thompson
Posted By: Bob-O Re: Battling Geese! - 04/04/18 12:41 AM
Fear and loathing in NE IN and central FL.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 05/02/18 02:13 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Another update on the flashing yellow lights....

Since that one occurrence of geese on the pond at day break, no more have spent the night on the pond. Perhaps the lights are working or at least helping.

The lights do nothing of course with respect to geese dropping by during the day. Those leave right away though when my old dog 410 barks at them. grin


Update....

We are into May and I have seen a definite drop in geese on the pond. Still an occasional " drop in" during the day but no over night guests. Interestingly, no GBH on the pond at dawn this year as well. I have decided the generic solar flashing yellow lights definitely help. At $40 a light, money well spent, even if the batteries are not replaceable. I will spend the bucks every few years for replacements.
Posted By: canyoncreek Re: Battling Geese! - 05/02/18 02:16 AM
all batteries are replaceable... there are two wires... you know the rest.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 05/02/18 02:18 AM
Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
all batteries are replaceable... there are two wires... you know the rest.


Problem with these lights is the case is fabricated such that you can't access the battery without destroying the light.

Edit: I just realized I never posted a pic of the lights. I will post some in the next couple of days. Supposed to storm here for the next few days and I'm keeping my fingers crossed it is too wet to take pics for a while! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 06/10/18 09:09 PM
Here's a pic of one of the lights. Cast aluminum frame. They come with a detachable mount so I just stuck the hubs into some 2 foot sections of PVC I had around as the posts. This one has been out there thru the winter just to see how they would hold up. No problem. Still going strong.



Attached File
Flashing Light.jpg  (987 downloads)
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 06/11/18 01:14 AM
Time to close the loop on my little experiment with the flashing lights. After having three different pairs of geese come wandering out of the brush herding their brood for this year to the pond....

My Conclusions:

My lights that flash at night did nothing to keep geese from showing up in the morning and spending the day.

They did not prevent geese from trying to raise their brood on my pond

Maybe the lights designed specifically as geese deterrents do better...not in my budget to find out but if anyone has tried them, please post your experience.



Posted By: SetterGuy Re: Battling Geese! - 06/11/18 02:27 AM
Thanks Bill. Iím not at my pond often enough to keep geese away. Iím just lucky so far, that they have decided to stay away.
Posted By: anthropic Re: Battling Geese! - 06/11/18 04:00 AM
I found that scare-eye balloons seemed to deter GBH, but not geese. Also, holographic bird scare tape put on favorite perches was useful against water turkeys, but again not geese.

The only thing that seemed to bother the geese was when the raccoons swam to the island and raided their nests. A couple of weeks after that they left.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Battling Geese! - 06/12/18 12:31 AM
Guys,

I've been pondering a question that has perhaps baffled pondmiesters for years...are geese so smart that they are not fooled by our feeble attempts to scare them away or are they...just too STUPID to be afraid!! crazy
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Battling Geese! - 06/12/18 11:29 AM
I have spent a lot of my life outdoors and have come to believe most all of Gods creatures are pretty smart. If they weren't man would have killed them all by now.
Posted By: RAH Re: Battling Geese! - 06/12/18 01:10 PM
Man has actually done a pretty good job at causing widespread extinction of many species. I often consider the difference between survival instinct and intelligence. It does not take much intelligence to avoid places where you are shot at. As a biologist, I attribute a lot of survival skills among wildlife and people to basic instinct. Those with these inclinations tend to be the ones passing on their genes. Not to be political, but this selection pressure may no longer apply to humans in developed countries.
Posted By: Bill D. Mutt Pond CC report 2018 - 08/03/18 07:34 PM
A couple of pics of CC we've caught this summer. The little guy is one size class of recruits we've seen. We've also caught smaller.


These two ladies, one 5 lb+ and 1 6 lb+, have an interesting color pattern that I don't ever recall seeing before. Anybody seen CC with this "camo" pattern?


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Posted By: anthropic Re: Mutt Pond CC report 2018 - 08/03/18 07:50 PM
Nice fish with rather unusual coloration.

Bill, how long does it take to grow a 4 to 6 inch CC into 18 - 21 inches, assuming they are fed adequately? I'm considering doing that in my 1/10 acre forage pond.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mutt Pond CC report 2018 - 08/04/18 02:50 PM
Originally Posted By: anthropic
Nice fish with rather unusual coloration.

Bill, how long does it take to grow a 4 to 6 inch CC into 18 - 21 inches, assuming they are fed adequately? I'm considering doing that in my 1/10 acre forage pond.


In my pond, 18 to 21 inch CC would weigh probably 2 to 3 lb+.

If I stocked 4 to 6 inch CC spring 2019, I would expect to harvest 18 to 21 inch fish fall of 2020. My growing season is shorter than yours though so I would expect yours to grow faster.
Posted By: Bill D. Mutt Pond YP report 2018 - 08/12/18 08:53 PM
Although we never see egg ribbons in the spring, apparently, our YP do successfully spawn. We accidentally caught three this size and slightly smaller yesterday while fishing for BG. I hate catching this cool water species when it is this hot as they seem to easily stress. One of the ones we caught did not make it.





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YP2018YOY.jpg  (806 downloads)
Posted By: SetterGuy Re: Mutt Pond YP report 2018 - 08/12/18 09:41 PM
Nice pic. Iíve turned into a big YP fan in the last few years. Iíve caught a few smaller ones lately, but not many.
Posted By: Bill D. Mutt Pond WE report 2018 - 09/29/18 12:19 AM
I am very pleased with the walleye fishing this year in our little puddle. The ones we caught/harvested were in the 20 to 21 inch range. If all that I stocked survived, there should still be 9 more in there. The plan is to ladder stock some more next spring. They seem to be really helping control the number of YOY LMB. Here is a typical WE from this year. (It is dead and a little stiff in the pic as it was in an ice water bath just prior to the photo.)





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Walleye92518.jpg  (676 downloads)
Posted By: Flame Re: Mutt Pond WE report 2018 - 09/29/18 12:01 PM
Bill D, I have only seen catfish look those colors after they had been dead for awhile. I'm being serious. I assume those fish are still alive in that photo? They look to be. I had a retail fish dealers license many years ago and bought catfish from huge lakes and private commercial ponds all over Texas.Don't recall ever seeing LIVE channel cats look exactly like that.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mutt Pond CC report 2018 - 09/29/18 11:10 PM
Originally Posted By: Flame
Bill D, I have only seen catfish look those colors after they had been dead for awhile. I'm being serious. I assume those fish are still alive in that photo? They look to be. I had a retail fish dealers license many years ago and bought catfish from huge lakes and private commercial ponds all over Texas.Don't recall ever seeing LIVE channel cats look exactly like that.


Yep, those girls are alive in the pic. That was their coloring as we pulled them from the pond. Only thing I can figure is that we had had quite a bit of rain that raised the pond 4 feet or so. Maybe they were changing color to adjust to the change in water color/visibility? They tasted great! smile
Posted By: snrub Re: Mutt Pond CC report 2018 - 09/30/18 04:27 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
A couple of pics of CC we've caught this summer. The little guy is one size class of recruits we've seen. We've also caught smaller.


These two ladies, one 5 lb+ and 1 6 lb+, have an interesting color pattern that I don't ever recall seeing before. Anybody seen CC with this "camo" pattern?


If we put CC in our holding pen and leave them a few days they will get that pale coloration I think from rubbing themselves on the plastic mesh and fighting. We have learned we can leave BG in the cage for quite some time with no ill effects but the CC over a couple days and they will get skin damage with eventual bacterial infection and die. We try not to leave CC longer than over night and clean them by no later than the next day because of this.

But to get to my point, by looking at the date posted, I wonder if the fish could have been nesting and getting the same type of skin coloration because of abrasion like I see when we have them in the cage. I do not know this to be the case, just an idea that might fit the time of year.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mutt Pond CC report 2018 - 10/01/18 12:11 AM
Thanks for the input John!

Interesting point. You may be on to something. One was full of eggs and the other had apparently just spawned (no eggs).
Posted By: bigpullerman Re: Mutt Pond CC report 2018 - 10/04/18 04:48 PM
I have started reading through this thread about your "Mutt Pond" I also have a pond with just bucket stocked fish. It's all about the fun of fishing at your own fishing hole and see what you can catch.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mutt Pond CC report 2018 - 10/11/18 10:56 AM
Originally Posted By: bigpullerman
I have started reading through this thread about your "Mutt Pond" I also have a pond with just bucket stocked fish. It's all about the fun of fishing at your own fishing hole and see what you can catch.


Hope you enjoy the read Buddy. Sounds like we have similar goals. This year was our 5th summer since digging the pond. I am happy to report that it has exceeded our expectations. You never know what you might catch when fishing in our pond and we have feasted several times on nice size BG, HBG, PS, YP, LMB, SMB, WE and CC. I wish you similar or better results with your Mutt Pond!

Bill D.
Posted By: Bill D. Mutt Pond GSF report 2018 - 10/22/18 10:17 PM
Caught and released our one and only GSF tonight. Fat little fella. 7.5 inches. I stocked it a few years back to see if I could get a few HBG recruits. I don't know whether it is male or female but we do occasionally catch a HBG of various sizes so the plan is apparently working at least to some extent.





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GSF102218.jpg  (347 downloads)
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mutt Pond YP report 2018 - 10/26/18 08:55 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Although we never see egg ribbons in the spring, apparently, our YP do successfully spawn. We accidentally caught three this size and slightly smaller yesterday while fishing for BG. I hate catching this cool water species when it is this hot as they seem to easily stress. One of the ones we caught did not make it.





Just realized I did not post a pic of a typical YP that we harvested this year so I snapped this shot a couple days ago. This one was 11+ inches. There is a also a 8.5 inch BG in the shot.







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YP102318.jpg  (370 downloads)
Posted By: snrub Re: Mutt Pond YP report 2018 - 10/26/18 11:37 PM
I know nothing about YP, but they look good to me Bill.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mutt Pond YP report 2018 - 10/29/18 11:17 PM
Thanks for the input John! I'm definitely not a YP expert either! I consider the YP in the picture as an "OK" fish and am happy with it. Our harvest size limit for YP is 11 inches MIN so this one just made the "cut." I set the size limit at 11 in an effort to protect the typically smaller male YP this year to, hopefully, bring up the male to female ratio. My understanding is it is best to have several males to every female to help assure good fertilization of each egg strand/ribbon.
Posted By: Bill D. Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/08/18 11:56 PM
A harvest update would not be complete without LMB. We set our harvest size at 15 inches and above this year. Here is one that made the "cut."

17.25 inches and 2 lbs 15 oz







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Posted By: Bill D. Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/09/18 12:02 AM
Another one...

18.5 inches and 3 lbs 12 oz.





I did not calculate relative weight on our LMB but I am happy with these fish considering they are post spawn Northern LMB from a small pond. (Our LMB are not pellet trained and eat all natural forage)



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Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/09/18 12:15 AM
Well done Bill
Posted By: Bocomo Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/09/18 12:24 AM
Nice fish.

Both are right around 100% RW!
Posted By: snrub Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/09/18 01:03 AM
Good looking fish Bill.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/09/18 01:07 AM
Thanks for the kind words Dave and John!

Bocomo, thanks for running the numbers! My unrealistic target for the fish in my pond is Rw 95 to 110% so I'm happy these fish meet that criteria. I figure less than 95 means the fish are not getting the nourishment they need and over 110 could mean they are couch potatoes and not getting the correct nourishment and exercise they need. I do supplemental feed the BG by hand tossing Optimal BG chow but try not to feed to excess. Right or wrong, in my novice opinion, I believe fish need exercise just like humans to live a long life and reach their true "healthy" potential. To achieve that, they need to chase some of their food to stay in shape. smile
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/09/18 11:32 AM
Bill, You did good smile When I want to eat LMB, the size pictured are the size I want to fry up!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/10/18 12:58 AM
Originally Posted By: TGW1
Bill, You did good smile When I want to eat LMB, the size pictured are the size I want to fry up!


I agree Tracy! Perfect size. Our pond is all about growing decent sized fish to put on the table. That is why you will not see me posting about harvesting smaller fish and trying to grow trophies. My little Thai bride fishes for FOOD!
Posted By: bigpullerman Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/10/18 03:58 AM
Nice LMB there Bill. Looks like they are getting plenty to eat.
Posted By: Flame Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/10/18 12:38 PM
Nice job Bill. The beautiful green coloring is just perfect!! Congrats!! Your water must be nice. Mine stays so muddy the fish come out almost white.
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Mutt Pond LMB report 2018 - 11/10/18 12:42 PM
Pretty fish Bill but I bet Bob-O put that in your pond so you wouldnít feel so bad.... lol

Good job
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/10/18 03:40 PM
Thanks for the encouragement guys!

Pat,

I'm not sure about Bob O's influence with the LMB but I did see a big snapper sunning himself on the shore wearing a pink speedo! grin
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/10/18 06:14 PM
All right, I'll bite. Just when I'm all nice and relaxed in the warm Florida sun some redneck hillbilly from Texas has ta take a jab at me. Then a fellow that can't keep uninvited fish out of his pond has to chime in. FYI, my speedo is flesh colored camo. It's like a Mepps spinner ta the blue hairs. By the way Bill, do ya have hard water yet? It was 33 when I left In on Weds. 84 when I landed 2 hrs later. Flyin is so muuch more fun than drivin.
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/10/18 07:38 PM
Bob-O
Too much info. This is a family forum.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/10/18 07:40 PM
No hard water yet Bob. It was 19 F when I got up this morning though and we had a couple 3 inches of snow yesterday.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/11/18 06:11 PM
Should'nt be long with those temps. Do you and your lady ice fish? I don't enjoy the cold but did like ta set out on the ice on a sunny day and see that little bobber twitch.
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/11/18 06:14 PM
Pat, was too much info lettin everyone know you're a red neck hilljack? The whole family can handle that.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/13/18 02:25 AM
Originally Posted By: Bob-O
Should'nt be long with those temps. Do you and your lady ice fish? I don't enjoy the cold but did like ta set out on the ice on a sunny day and see that little bobber twitch.


I might try ice fishing this year. I'm still a little gun shy. Went thru the ice when I was running a trap line as a teenager. All alone, midnight, a long way from home, when I went thru the ice and my waders filled with water. Took me a good while to pull myself out using a lucky overhanging branch. That was one long cold walk back to the truck!...as far as I know, those waders are still there....ever since then, I don't trust ice much!
Posted By: Bob-O Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/13/18 07:57 PM
Yes, ya need to know the BOW and should always have a friend.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/24/18 01:33 AM
I think I will be staying off the "ice" this year again. It has been a weird winter so far. Had a couple of inches of ice and 12+ inches of snow around Thanksgiving. Now, ice is almost gone and supposed to be near 50 and rain by Thursday this week! We are enjoying the fireplace with all the damp and overcast weather though! ....For the folks that appreciate carvings, the masks hanging on either side are depictions of an ancient Asian King and Queen and are from Hong Kong. The long skinny thing in the middle is a dragon blow gun carved from a water buffalo bone and is from Indonesia.



Happy Holidays everybody!

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Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: On Mutt Pond - 12/24/18 11:43 AM
I like the blow gun.
Posted By: Bill D. New Family member - 02/04/19 01:40 AM
Folks,

I am pleased to announce we have a new family member here at Mutt Pond! Her name is Cocoa and she is a chocolate Lab. My wife and youngest son went out shopping together right after Christmas. I received a text from my wife with the picture below and the message, "what do you think?" The rest, as they say, is history!

Took her for a walk by the pond at 10 weeks old and she dove in despite the ice floating around. Swam around a bit, climbed out and ran like crazy for the house! I'm hoping she takes a strong dislike to geese and GBH!





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Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: New Family member - 02/04/19 02:43 AM
Pretty young lady! Good job
Posted By: anthropic Re: New Family member - 02/04/19 05:02 AM
Beautiful dog! Now my wife wants one... wink
Posted By: Bill D. Re: New Family member - 02/10/19 02:33 AM
Originally Posted By: anthropic
Beautiful dog! Now my wife wants one... wink


Get her one! We are having a great time with Cocoa. Only 15 weeks old so everything is a new experience for her. Been spending time training her and she is a quick learner. No big problems....if you don't count the big house plant she shredded! wink
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: New Family member - 02/10/19 02:41 AM
Just reward her with praise and a treat everytime she chases a goose or GBH. You might have to demonstrate the practice the first couple times.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 02/22/19 11:55 PM
That's the plan Bill. So far, she seems to be really enjoying being trained and catches on fast. I hope she catches on as fast once the geese, GBH, etc show up cause this old man chasing geese to demonstrate will not be a great example! laugh
Posted By: bigpullerman Re: On Mutt Pond - 02/23/19 01:13 AM
I bet she will catch on real quick. Pretty dog.
Posted By: Mike Whatley Re: On Mutt Pond - 02/23/19 01:32 PM
I bought a yellow lab a few years ago, with hopes of training him to be a duck/goose dog. Unfortunately, he doesn't have the breeding or "want to". The only thing he'll retrieve is his teddy bear when we get home and let him in the house. He doesnt even like the water...lol. Luckily, we only see an occassional crane, egret, or GBH, because none of the dogs pay much attention to them.
Posted By: Bill D. Update 2019 - 04/09/19 12:31 AM
Well the winter has been interesting to say the least. Had a few days -30F+. Ice was 18 inches plus. My AirMax aeration opened a hole though when we had 15 inches of snow on top of that! The ice went out a couple weeks back and approximately half the pond is covered in FA mats. What a mess! I sprayed some areas with Cutrine Plus yesterday and today but I suspect the water temp is too cold to really have much impact. I ordered a pool noodle to strap on my weed rake to give it some buoyancy so I can toss it out and try to get most of this crap off. I also ordered some copper sulfate crystals for follow-up treatment. Anybody else seeing a lot more FA this spring than usual?

The good news is fish hitting the surface everywhere and no signs of any winter killed! smile
Posted By: poppy65 Re: Update 2019 - 04/14/19 12:41 AM
Seems my FA took off a bit early this year too Bill. I was lazy about putting in the pond dye but it looks like it has stopped the new floating mats since the dye went in. Think I got it before it got bad enough to need spraying. I don't mind a little around the edge to give FHM and other critters something to hides in.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Update 2019 - 04/17/19 10:47 AM
Poppy,

We've considered pond dye but are concerned what it will do to the bottom of the food chain.

This is the most FA we've ever had by far. My bride and I are working on getting the mats removed and will follow up with a copper sulfate treatment. I think I've read here that Alum might help. Anybody have any experience with using Alum to fight FA?
Posted By: Bill D. SMB recruit? - 04/25/19 12:02 AM
My youngest son and a couple of his buddies went fishing a couple nights ago in between thunderstorms. My son's buddy, Justin, caught this little smallie. What do you guys think. Could this be a recruit from a 2016 or 2017 spawn?





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Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: SMB recruit? - 04/25/19 12:44 AM
Tell him good job Bill! Bet it is a recruit
Posted By: Bill D. Re: SMB recruit? - 04/25/19 12:17 PM
Thanks Pat. I will tell him.

I'm not sure this is a recruit. Maybe just a male? It does not look gravid in the photo. SMB in our pond face a lot of competition from LMB and WE at the dinner table so I expect slower growth than a pond with only SMB as the top predator.
Posted By: Bill D. Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 04/26/19 09:10 PM
My bride and I stocked a couple of grass carp today. Last summer we were seeing more Small pondweed, Potamogeton pusillus, than we would like to see and, to a lesser extent, Floating leaf pondweed, Potamogeton natans. I only stocked 2 GC in our half acre because I donít want these plants completely gone, just would like to keep them under control some. I figure we can always stock more this fall or next spring, if required, to get the level of control we want. Since I was at Keystone anyway, I also picked up 5 pounds of GSH in an effort to bolster our limited population of them.

On a side note, while raking FA, I accidentally caught a papershell craw (PSC) with a tail that was covered with berry. My bride also caught one a week or so ago. Looks like at least some of the little guys are still surviving. smile

I also ordered some advanced size WE for ladder stocking this fall. The plan is to harvest a bunch of LMB this summer to make room for the WE in the predator base for the fall stocking.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 04/27/19 01:33 AM
IMO two GC could after 2 years easily eliminate all your tasty GC preferred pondweeds in your half acre. After this year keep a close eye on the amount of plants present. Keep us advised about your results with those two GC once they reach 24"+. Hopefully you have added the correct amount.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 04/28/19 11:32 AM
Thanks for the input Bill! I really struggled with what the right number of GC to stock would be. Maybe the answer in a half acre is 0 if the goal is not to wipe out all vegetation! It will at least be an interesting experiment. The pond also has, hybrid lilies, pickerelweed, duck potato, eel grass, creeping rush, hardstem bullrush and a little of a few others. Maybe I will gain some insight as to what vegetation the GC prefer and can provide some info back here.

If the GC really start to get out of hand, I have read that they are good eating.... grin
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 05/18/19 12:39 AM
So I resumed feeding Optimal BG chow a couple three nights ago after a long cold winter. I was greeted with an enthusiastic response but my perception is the BG population has taken a heavy hit since last fall. Plenty of larger brood stock but very limited numbers of BG 4 inches or less. Could be more will show up in the next few weeks as they get back into the routine or maybe that reinforces the plan to remove some LMB? I'm sure the SMB and WE are also applying pressure to that size class BG. Any thoughts? I did see one CC about 3 pounds at feeding time but he seemed more interested in the BG than the pellets. No sign of YP but that is not unusual for us when we first start feeding again and I am not throwing chow in the area of the pond they seem to prefer.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Update 2019 - 06/13/19 01:10 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Poppy,

We've considered pond dye but are concerned what it will do to the bottom of the food chain.

This is the most FA we've ever had by far. My bride and I are working on getting the mats removed and will follow up with a copper sulfate treatment. I think I've read here that Alum might help. Anybody have any experience with using Alum to fight FA?


Just to follow up on this...I applied the copper sulfate to fight the FA. Due to recent surgery, my application options were limited. I went with 1 pound of CS per gallon of hot water in a pump sprayer. 7 pounds of CS total in our .5 to .6 acre puddle. I am hooked! Absolutely incredible results. After a week or so, we were FA free! We are starting to see some signs the FA is trying to come back, so I will hit it with a lighter dose. I'm thinking it will be a monthly activity thru the summer. I used hot water to make the CS dissolve easier as well as helping the mixture disperse more in the cooler pond water.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Update 2019 - 06/14/19 02:36 AM
Anybody have any thoughts or experience as to whether adding a surfactant to a copper sulfate solution used in a spray application would make it even more effective?
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Update 2019 - 06/14/19 09:46 PM
Try a lesser concentration of CS. I think 1 pound in 5 gallons will give about the same results. Try it and report back.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Update 2019 - 06/15/19 01:38 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Try a lesser concentration of CS. I think 1 pound in 5 gallons will give about the same results. Try it and report back.


Thanks for the feedback Bill! Just to be sure, so are you thinking 1.5 to 2 pounds of CS total in a .5 acre? That would be great! I just ordered 50 more pounds. At that rate, I will have a good supply for a very long time! smile I've found that about 7 to 8 gallons of the spray lets me get good coverage all the way around the pond. What do you think about adding surfactant? I'm thinking it can't hurt?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Update 2019 - 06/16/19 01:47 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Try a lesser concentration of CS. I think 1 pound in 5 gallons will give about the same results. Try it and report back.


Thanks for the feedback Bill! Just to be sure, so are you thinking 1.5 to 2 pounds of CS total in a .5 acre? That would be great! I just ordered 50 more pounds. At that rate, I will have a good supply for a very long time! smile I've found that about 7 to 8 gallons of the spray lets me get good coverage all the way around the pond. What do you think about adding surfactant? I'm thinking it can't hurt?


Bill C,

I've been giving this a little more thought. I will go with 4 ounces (by weight) of CS per gallon (roughly your recommended dose (if I understand your input correctly) and 1 ounce of Cygnet (surfactant) as my next maintenance dose. Heck, if it is not effective, I can always hit it again. Maybe we can all learn something.

Thanks again for the input!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 07/08/19 01:21 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
So I resumed feeding Optimal BG chow a couple three nights ago after a long cold winter. I was greeted with an enthusiastic response but my perception is the BG population has taken a heavy hit since last fall. Plenty of larger brood stock but very limited numbers of BG 4 inches or less. Could be more will show up in the next few weeks as they get back into the routine or maybe that reinforces the plan to remove some LMB? I'm sure the SMB and WE are also applying pressure to that size class BG. Any thoughts? I did see one CC about 3 pounds at feeding time but he seemed more interested in the BG than the pellets. No sign of YP but that is not unusual for us when we first start feeding again and I am not throwing chow in the area of the pond they seem to prefer.


Well I'm happy to report that the BG population appears to be healthy. More seem to show up every evening. I am now feeding twice the amount of Optimal BG than I did last year and they still clean it up almost as fast as I throw it in! Also nice to see an occasional YP and a couple smaller CC coming to the table for a snack.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 08/01/19 02:43 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Öordered some advanced size WE for ladder stocking this fall. The plan is to harvest a bunch of LMB this summer to make room for the WE in the predator base for the fall stocking.


We have not had much of a chance to work on harvest this summer but I hit the bait shop for some shiners and here are a few my bride caught last night. They look like nice plump healthy fish to my inexperienced eyes.





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Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 08/02/19 03:01 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Öordered some advanced size WE for ladder stocking this fall. The plan is to harvest a bunch of LMB this summer to make room for the WE in the predator base for the fall stocking.


We have not had much of a chance to work on harvest this summer but I hit the bait shop for some shiners and here are a few my bride caught last night. They look like nice plump healthy fish to my inexperienced eyes.





We caught a couple more LMB and CC yesterday of varying sizes. Interesting to me is that all the fish we are catching are recruits. The CC must have been more successful spawning than I originally thought.
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 08/02/19 03:57 PM
Thatís good I guess...... mine havenít yet or the fry got et up before Iíve seen em. I hope my CC and BC donít ever spawn
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 08/05/19 04:20 PM
I agree Pat...kind of a mixed blessing. We have harvested all the original CC stockers so, if they hadn't successfully spawned, I would not have been able to enjoy that fried catfish dinner with fresh sweet corn from the garden a couple nights ago! grin
Posted By: Bill D. 2019 Havest - 09/04/19 01:15 AM
We have been removing several LMB to make room for ladder stocking more walleye this fall. Here is a walleye my bride caught tonight. 21 inches 2 lbs 14 oz.

For you folks with small ponds like mine (0.5 acre), IMO don't be afraid of adding a few walleye. As long as you make sure they have forage, IMO they make a great bonus catch!



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Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: 2019 Havest - 09/04/19 02:01 AM
Nice fish Bill. I hear those critters eat well
Posted By: Freg Re: 2019 Havest - 09/04/19 10:06 AM
How many walleye did you put in your pond? I plan to stock some in my small pond this fall.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: 2019 Havest - 09/05/19 10:13 PM
Originally Posted By: Pat Williamson
Nice fish Bill. I hear those critters eat well


Thanks Pat. IMO WE are definitely one of the best eating fresh water fish.

Originally Posted By: Freg
How many walleye did you put in your pond? I plan to stock some in my small pond this fall.

Freg,

I stocked 11. I have other apex predators in the pond,(LMB, SMB and CC) so I kept the numbers of WE low to keep from overwhelming my forage base. The WE this size seem to be helping control LMB recruitment which I consider another plus. IMO A 20 inch+ WE can, and do, easily catch and eat 4 to 5 inch LMB. I have 10 more 8 to 10 inch WE on order for ladder stocking this fall.
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: 2019 Havest - 09/06/19 12:52 AM
Dang Bill, I just noticed that you started this thread in 2015
Posted By: Bill D. Re: 2019 Havest - 09/10/19 04:42 PM
Originally Posted By: Dave Davidson1
Dang Bill, I just noticed that you started this thread in 2015


Dave,

It's been a fun and learning experience for sure! I need to go back and read thru the thread from the beginning someday soon to refresh this old man's memory! Might even find a few things that were left open that I can close the loop on or update.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/25/19 02:57 PM
We decided to harvest some gills to further reduce the current pond biomass before stocking the new walleye. Based on this summer's fishing results, we knew that our most prevalent slot size is 8 to 10 inch. We were able to harvest 15 in about an hour. Here is a photo of some typical fish. Question to those with a more experienced eye than mine. Are these BG or HBG or....







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Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/25/19 05:15 PM
Nice lookin BG Bill, I probably need to remove a bunch from my puddle in hopes to replace with BCP, lol
Posted By: roundy Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/25/19 06:17 PM
I would guess, (heavy on the guess) you have two female BG and one male BG. Is this that new game show " Name that Fish"?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/26/19 12:21 AM
Thanks guys! Roundy, I love that show!

My first thought was BG but I always starting doubting my guess when I see that aqua blue on the jaw. Is that blue a typical pure blood NBG trait?
Posted By: Pat Williamson Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/26/19 06:30 PM
All my BG have blue like that Bill.... we ainít north for sure.....
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 09/27/19 02:58 PM
Thanks Pat!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 10/13/19 12:33 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
IMO two GC could after 2 years easily eliminate all your tasty GC preferred pondweeds in your half acre. After this year keep a close eye on the amount of plants present. Keep us advised about your results with those two GC once they reach 24"+. Hopefully you have added the correct amount.


It has been an unusually wet year and our water table pond never went to low pool as in past years so my visibility to the GC impact on plant life has been limited. I can say that our GC seem to have targeted the Small leaf pondweed, Potamogeton pusillus, as their preferred diet and to a lesser extent, the floating leaf pondweed. I have noted no significant impact to the hardy lilies, eel grass or marginals. Have to admit, Bill C, you have me nervous that 2 GC may be 2 too many as the impact these 2 twelve inch fish (when stocked) have had in the first year I would consider significant. Sure hope they choose FA as their next preferred food! smile
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 10/13/19 12:40 AM
BillD. I think your GC as they grow another year older, will start working more heavily next on the floating leaf pond weed. Thus next year you will see fewer floating leaves as the GC eat the vegetation before it reaches the surface. When I had eel grass and GC the GC worked heaviest on the spring eel grass that still had leaves from the prior year's plants. Keep an eye on the progress of your GC and keep us informed how they perform on your weed community.

Despite the body color variation of the one individual, I think all the BG in your picture are males. I base this on shape of the opercular flap. Color variation can be significant in BG from some ponds.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 10/26/19 12:39 AM
Thanks for the inputs Bill. I had the 1st and 3rd as males and wasn't sure on the second as the flap seemed more rounded.

The pond is down a foot or so and I took another look at the vegetation. As usual you are on target with your assessment. The only floating pond weed I see is that growing up in the middle of a Lily. The GC cleared all they had easy access to!
Posted By: ewest Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 10/29/19 07:43 PM
Bill D what can you tell us about the source of the BG ?

Agree with Bill that they look male but they have wide side barring for northern BG. That is more common with CNBG.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 10/30/19 12:18 AM
Originally Posted By: ewest
Bill D what can you tell us about the source of the BG ?

Agree with Bill that they look male but they have wide side barring for northern BG. That is more common with CNBG.


Ewest,

My brood stock came from Pierce Lake and Baumann Lake. I believe both are stocked by the Illinois DNR so the BG would have originally come from one of their hatcheries, most likely, Jack Wolfe.
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 10/30/19 01:27 AM
Some of the northern older bluegill will often have the wide side barring. Depending on type of habitat the barring varies in how dark it its. I have some pictures of BG with the wide dark barring pattern; mostly older fish from fairly clear water and dark bottoms.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 10/30/19 01:36 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
Some of the northern older bluegill will often have the wide side barring. Depending on type of habitat the barring varies in how dark it its. I have some pictures of BG with the wide dark barring pattern; mostly older fish from fairly clear water and dark bottoms.


I find this extremely interesting Bill. So if I catch BG with the wide dark barring in the future, should I assume they are older fish and go ahead and harvest them so they don't just end up turtle or FA food on the bottom of the pond?
Posted By: Bill Cody Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 10/30/19 07:26 PM
I'm not sure the noticeable wide barring is consistent enough for older BG to use as a guideline for harvest. Barring or noticable stripes on the side of BG is very likely highly variable depending on water body and esp water clarity. I would use BG size or length as a better guide of when to harvest.
Posted By: Snipe Re: 2019 Havest - 10/30/19 11:21 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
We have been removing several LMB to make room for ladder stocking more walleye this fall. Here is a walleye my bride caught tonight. 21 inches 2 lbs 14 oz.

For you folks with small ponds like mine (0.5 acre), IMO don't be afraid of adding a few walleye. As long as you make sure they have forage, IMO they make a great bonus catch!


Bill, it's been awhile I know but what condition were the ovaries in this fish, if you recall??
Posted By: Bill D. Re: 2019 Havest - 10/31/19 01:23 AM
Snipe,

Actually, I do remember because I was a little surprised by what I saw. The ovaries were surprisingly large to me for the time of year. Maybe 60 to 70%+ of what you would expect to see in a prespawn female in the spring.

Now answer a question for me...How the HECK did you know that was a female from that photo? Size of the fish?
Posted By: Snipe Re: 2019 Havest - 10/31/19 05:40 AM
Shape of head and eyes is one of the keys (after looking at 10,000-15,000 every spring) and not often will you find a 21" male :-))
Posted By: Bill D. Re: 2019 Havest - 11/02/19 12:28 AM
Originally Posted By: Snipe
Shape of head and eyes is one of the keys (after looking at 10,000-15,000 every spring) and not often will you find a 21" male :-))


Thanks Snipe, Makes sense! Was the condition of the ovaries of my Sept caught female what you expected?

Anybody know of a definitive way to tell male from female WE? I read an article somewhere that said the anal opening of a male is round and female's is "keyhole" shaped. Any truth to that?

Posted By: canyoncreek Re: 2019 Havest - 11/02/19 01:06 AM
This is the best way I can tell them apart:

Throw them in the live well.

If there are males and females mixed together, the females will be the ones shouting and complaining about the temperature and the crowded quarters. The males will be cowering in the corner.
Posted By: Augie Re: 2019 Havest - 11/02/19 01:30 AM
Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
This is the best way I can tell them apart:

Throw them in the live well.

If there are males and females mixed together, the females will be the ones shouting and complaining about the temperature and the crowded quarters. The males will be cowering in the corner.


OK, that made me chuckle.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: 2019 Havest - 11/03/19 01:00 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Originally Posted By: Snipe
Shape of head and eyes is one of the keys (after looking at 10,000-15,000 every spring) and not often will you find a 21" male :-))


Thanks Snipe, Makes sense! Was the condition of the ovaries of my Sept caught female what you expected?

Anybody know of a definitive way to tell male from female WE? I read an article somewhere that said the anal opening of a male is round and female's is "keyhole" shaped. Any truth to that?



Bump
Posted By: Snipe Re: 2019 Havest - 11/04/19 12:12 AM
Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
This is the best way I can tell them apart:

Throw them in the live well.

If there are males and females mixed together, the females will be the ones shouting and complaining about the temperature and the crowded quarters. The males will be cowering in the corner.


grin grin
Posted By: Snipe Re: 2019 Havest - 11/04/19 12:17 AM
Bill, I'm pulling fall nets for the State for the next 3 days.
I'll send some pics of sexing WAE.
There are a couple of ways to tell and this will give me an opportunity to do it with pics. We should have first sets run and done by 3pm tomorrow, I'll try and get some pics up tomorrow night if I can make it happen from my phone. We don't have wifi where I'll be the next 3 days but I'll see if I can make it work.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/04/19 01:34 AM
Thanks Snipe!

No hurry. I look forward to reading your thoughts on the subject! smile
Posted By: Bill D. Stocking Fall 2019 - 11/14/19 05:02 PM
Did our fall stocking today. Had to break a hole in the ice to get it done! The original plan was to ladder stock 10 WE 8-10 inch and 10 pounds of GSH. I got a call from Keystone a few days ago. Apparently, their supplier in Minnesota had a fish kill under the ice last winter and they lost their year two WE so no 8-10 inch were available. Turned out the biggest WE they have this fall is 6 to 8 inch so they gave me 14 of those. So the final numbers stocked today were 14 WE 6 to 8 inch, 10lbs FHM and 10lbs GSH.

Maybe a good thing? The 6 to 8 inch year one fish stocked today are the shooters from this year while the 8 to 10 inch year 2 fish would have been just average fish, correct?





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Posted By: wbuffetjr Re: Stocking Fall 2019 - 11/14/19 05:43 PM
Bill D

I am truly asking because I have no idea. Is Fall the best time to stock FHM and GSH? Won't they get pounded all winter or is that the plan? I ASSumed best time to stock would be in the spring when there's short time till reproduction??
Posted By: Bill D. Stocking Fall 2019 - 11/14/19 06:16 PM
Yep, I would stock them in the spring if I had hopes of them reproducing. I stocked the GSH and FHM now for two reasons. First, to act as diversions to help keep my new WE from being targeted hard right away by the larger predators already in the pond and second, to provide a little winter forage for the new WE as well as the existing herd. Maybe take a little pressure off the BG for a while as well. It would be a pleasant, though unexpected, bonus if any minnows survive to reproduce in the spring! smile
Posted By: wbuffetjr Re: On Mutt Pond - 11/14/19 06:31 PM
10-4 makes sense to me
Posted By: Bill D. Fall Stocking 2019 - 11/14/19 09:35 PM
The grass carp have significantly reduced the small leaf pond weed and my brush piles have pretty much disappeared. Once I build back up some cover in the spring, I might stock some GSH, when the water temp is correct for them to spawn, and see if they can survive and reproduce.
Posted By: Bill D. Closing the loop and updates - 12/03/19 01:54 AM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.
... I need to go back and read thru the thread from the beginning someday soon to refresh this old man's memory! Might even find a few things that were left open that I can close the loop on or update.


Well over the holiday I started reviewing the past posts in this thread and the first thing I found was....Approximately 20 pages had the photos unviewable thanks to the Photobucket mess!

I think I've removed all the Photobucket contamination and have all pictures viewable again. It had made the content on many posts worthless. Anybody else found this problem?
Posted By: Augie Re: Closing the loop and updates - 12/06/19 07:43 PM
Originally Posted By: Bill D.

I think I've removed all the Photobucket contamination and have all pictures viewable again. It had made the content on many posts worthless. Anybody else found this problem?


I ran into the same thing on my renovation thread when tinypic was shut down.

I've got some of it fixed, but there's still a lot of fixing to be done. I had saved all the pics in a semi-organized fashion,
but it's still a giant pita to go back and reset all of the photo links.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Unplanned Stocking - 12/06/19 11:18 PM
Originally Posted By: snrub
I would think with careful use of a glyphosate product, it would not be too bad to maintain the rock look. It is just going to take regular maintenance much like a lawn requires mowing.

Where we travel a lot, seems like it is easier to get a grandson to hop on a zero turn mower and mow than to do specific chores that require detail. They seem to avoid weed eaters like the plague, although buying a walk behind DR has helped a lot. I don't think I could get anyone to do the required maintenance while we are gone with what I would be willing to pay to make it work. My wife would like our rock to keep looking like rock, but I'm not willing to commit to the time it takes to do it.

I'm kind of a low maintenance type guy. I would never survive in a neighborhood that required property to look just so-so. One reason I could never see myself living in town with neighbors close.
I was just rereading this and snrub your crazy your place is very nice looking.
Posted By: snrub Re: Unplanned Stocking - 12/07/19 12:28 AM
Thanks. We like it.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Unplanned Stocking - 12/09/19 02:18 AM
I was reading this whole thread over the weekend. Very cool pond alot like I want mine to be (just fun fishing we swim in it also). I didnt see any picture of when everything has been done. You talk about doing landscaping around the pond. Can you post some new pictures of the place?
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Unplanned Stocking - 12/14/19 10:55 PM
Originally Posted By: RStringer
I was reading this whole thread over the weekend. Very cool pond alot like I want mine to be (just fun fishing we swim in it also). I didnt see any picture of when everything has been done. You talk about doing landscaping around the pond. Can you post some new pictures of the place?


Thanks Rusto!

The landscaping is a work in progress. We've put rip rap all around the pond and have some nice marginal and emerged vegetation. I'll try to remember to post some pics next summer. We've also planted hundreds of trees but it will be many years before they reach maturity and the look we want.
Posted By: RStringer Re: Unplanned Stocking - 12/14/19 11:39 PM
You very welcome. I love seeing new ideas around. Here in kansas pictures dont do any justice this time of year either. I'm glad to have a break from mowing. Looks like a beautiful place you have. I would love to do a rip rap on mine. Maybe someday after the kids move out.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Unplanned Stocking - 02/20/20 10:01 PM
Still hard ice and snow here. I used the aerator to blow a hole thru the ice and snow cover yesterday. Woke up this morning and it was 0 degrees F. I don't remember last time I saw the grass! I am REALLY looking forward to spring!
Posted By: Dave Davidson1 Re: Unplanned Stocking - 02/21/20 12:24 PM
0!!! Iíve hunted in that but have never lived anywhere that cold. Of course, I doubt that you can imagine 108.
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Unplanned Stocking - 03/01/20 11:06 PM
You can keep the 108 Dave! We rarely see 100. 50's today which was GREAT!
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 03/18/20 05:06 PM
Originally Posted by Bill D.
That's the plan Bill. So far, she seems to be really enjoying being trained and catches on fast. I hope she catches on as fast once the geese, GBH, etc show up cause this old man chasing geese to demonstrate will not be a great example! laugh


Proud to report our Chocolate Lab, Cocoa, is doing great in her training. She loves chasing geese off the pond and doesn't mind going in after them! She spied a GBH coming in for a landing today and quickly sent him on his way!
Posted By: TGW1 Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 03/20/20 01:33 PM
Bill, I just tell my Golden "those birds are eating my fish" and off he goes after any bird at or around the pond . lol He watches the skies and the pond banks smile
Posted By: Bill D. Re: Spring 2019 stocking adjustment - 08/05/20 12:34 PM
Originally Posted by Bill D.
The grass carp have significantly reduced the small leaf pond weed and my brush piles have pretty much disappeared. Once I build back up some cover in the spring, I might stock some GSH, when the water temp is correct for them to spawn, and see if they can survive and reproduce.

Update: Yep, the the small leaf pond weed is pretty much gone. Same with the floating leaf pond weed. I've never seen the grass carp since stocking but, I assume they are responsible. The lilies and eel grass seem to be unaffected. I am happy to report we have had an explosion of pickerlweed, duck potato and hard stem bullrush this year.
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