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Soaked the lower unit of the TH feeder, along with all the pellets there. Smelly mess, jammed feeding mechanism. I called TH to see what they recommended & followed advice, but still have issues. We'll see.

This particular feeder has had multiple leaks along the seams last couple of years, so not a surprise power washing created problems. We've taped sides to keep water out, but it's getting to the point where it needs replacing even without power washing fiasco. If it can't be fixed, I have a replacement ordered. No real complaints, the internal guts are still going strong & nothing lasts forever.


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17,L, 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 25 HSB & 250 F1 9/20,L,180# RBT 12/20, 206, 7k TFS,100#TP 5/21, 225



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Put in 1500+ Fatheads and 6 small pallets roped together. Only had 20 floaters which a couple of crows snacked on. I did notice fresh coon tracks near the pond; probably looking for the frogs creating the tadpoles around the perimeter. Will be putting in more habitat this week.

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Haven't noticed much clearing of the water since I turned the air off. No surprise really, considering how much the bottom is being stirred up by the dogs playing.
I'm starting to think that the cloudy water isn't necessarily a bad thing. I haven't had to use a drop of algaecide this spring because the FA has been nonexistent.
The water is teeming with copepods, and there are thousands of grass shrimp in spite of a virtually complete lack of rooted vegetation.

Over the past two weeks Booger the Aussie pup has taught herself to swim. She isn't brave enough yet to jump off the dock with the Doberman, but she will swim
from shore to the middle of the pond to fetch her ball. It took a whole summer to get the Doberman to that point.

I checked water temp yesterday at 5:00pm. 80.2° F on top, 63.4° F at 8'. I'm going to leave the air off for now and continue to monitor.

Spent a few minutes dipping the Trout Magnet, and got some weights and measures. Didn't hook any of the jumbo sunfish, but there's always another day.
Put another half dozen <8" BG in the cage for transfer to the bait pond.
BG 8" 7.87oz
BG 8" 7.94oz
HSB 9.5" 7oz
HSB 11.5" 13.5oz
RES 7" 5.4oz
SMB 9.5" 5.5oz

Mrs. Augie has been wanting to go native in her aquarium, so I grabbed the pool skimmer net, made one quick swipe on top of the rocks near the dock, and hit
the jackpot. 50-ish newly spawned GAMs, 1/2" or so in size, half a dozen grass shrimp, and three baby crayfish that might go 1/2". I had a pair of ~3" YP in
the Z trap, but she said no to those. She doesn't want all of her new baby GAMs to be wiped out.

Catching those teensy crayfish reminded me that it's time to try bouncing a 1" rubber crayfish on a 1/32oz jig head through the rip-rap.

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Augie,

IMHO, if you have a wife that wants to go native on any nature related things - then you have hit the jackpot as regards your spouse!

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Originally Posted by Mainahs70
Put in 1500+ Fatheads and 6 small pallets roped together. Only had 20 floaters which a couple of crows snacked on. I did notice fresh coon tracks near the pond; probably looking for the frogs creating the tadpoles around the perimeter. Will be putting in more habitat this week.

Wish I'd put in a bunch of pallets when stocked fatheads! Smart move.


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17,L, 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 25 HSB & 250 F1 9/20,L,180# RBT 12/20, 206, 7k TFS,100#TP 5/21, 225



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Great report! Sounds like you've established a terrific food chain, Augie. I tried stocking a thousand grass shrimp, but couldn't get them to establish despite having some pondweeds.


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17,L, 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 25 HSB & 250 F1 9/20,L,180# RBT 12/20, 206, 7k TFS,100#TP 5/21, 225



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My only problem with the Texas Hunter has been leaks on the side windows. That caused feed to clump up and wound up sticking in the throwing wheel. That burnt up the motor. I’ve caulked it several times.


It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

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Augie, I wonder what it is about your water chemistry that keeps the shrimp thriving? I tried on a couple of occasions and can't seem to keep the shrimp going. I'm looking for a supplier to see if a larger starting dose might help them survive. I'd like to study water chemistry though and see if that is what is the thing that stops my success.

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I have no idea why the grass shrimp are doing so well in my pond. I bought a 20-pack from the ebay dude and dumped em in. Now there are thousands of them.
The Virile crayfish that came from QA's pond are indeed that, and to my thinking, are the main reason that my RES are in such good shape.

Went back and did the Wr calculations on the fish I measured the other day.
The BG were both 110%+
The RES was 125%+
The HSB were both 100%+
The SMB, on the other hand, would seem to be about half starved to death, although he looked to me like he was in good shape.
I suppose it's possible that I recorded the weight incorrectly.

Finding Wr calculator spreadsheets made that super easy. Those will be a great tool to track what's happening in the pond in the years to come.

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Augie,
Can you tell us anything about water quality, ph, hardness, alkalinity etc? Did you ever get a basic pool water quality kit and test?

I have tried to stock crayfish and they don't show up in traps. I caught some on the edges looking like they were trying to flee by land!! I wonder if they want a certain water ph/hardness/calcium content to thrive.

I bought 2 shipments of shrimp from the ebay dude, the first one got lost in transit during COVID and arrived with most dead. The seller very nicely agreed to replace once weather and COVID cooperated. I put that batch in later in the fall and still no real survival that I can see.

I have a lot more FA that they can hide in so I might try one more shipment but would be happy to pay you or some other pond boss meister who may have scads of them and be willing to help

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I blame low alkalinity for failure to establish at my place. Crustaceans need calcium to flourish. Bet Augie's place is rich in the stuff!


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17,L, 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 25 HSB & 250 F1 9/20,L,180# RBT 12/20, 206, 7k TFS,100#TP 5/21, 225



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Took the pool test kit out to the pond this morning.

Total alkalinity >150ppm
Total hardness >500 The HTH didn't specify unit of measure, but according to their chart it is very high.
Ph 7.5


I've put ~125 ton of crushed limestone in the pond since I cleaned it out. It also gets the runoff from ~500ft
of the lane to my house. Most years it takes ~50 ton of inch-base crushed limestone added to that section
to keep it in good shape. Every time it rains hard enough to run off the pond gets a dose of ag lime.

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Alkalinity of 150 is good. Hardness of 500 is odd with that alkalinity. See PB mag new issue for article by Prof. Clyde Boyd - the authority on water quality.

Is your region highly acid?

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I'm not convinced that pool test kits are completely accurate when testing pond water.
There's a lot of stuff in pond water that isn't present in a properly maintained swimming pool.

The natural soil Ph here ranges 5.8-6.5. My property is on the low end of that range.

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Caught 10 BCP from neighbors pond . 13-15” and transferred to my pond. Hope they are to big for the LMB to eat..... I’ll keep trying to get a catchable number in my pond again

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Last evening in pond #2 which is currently low and void of vegetation because of grass carp, we added some cedar trees to the shallows for hiding for smaller fish.

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Originally Posted by Augie
Took the pool test kit out to the pond this morning.

Total alkalinity >150ppm
Total hardness >500 The HTH didn't specify unit of measure, but according to their chart it is very high.
Ph 7.5


I've put ~125 ton of crushed limestone in the pond since I cleaned it out. It also gets the runoff from ~500ft
of the lane to my house. Most years it takes ~50 ton of inch-base crushed limestone added to that section
to keep it in good shape. Every time it rains hard enough to run off the pond gets a dose of ag lime.

Wow, Augie! Even with liming, my total alkalinity & hardness are in mid 40s.


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17,L, 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 25 HSB & 250 F1 9/20,L,180# RBT 12/20, 206, 7k TFS,100#TP 5/21, 225



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Had my BOW mapped today, DO levels to be measured Monday. pH 7.6, which is fine, alkalinity/hardness in mid to upper 30s. I was told this was acceptable level for east Texas, no need to lime this year. Good, because I limed just last fall! Sigh.

Bushy pondweed making a comeback as I have not been able to establish a good bloom despite 90 lb of fertilizer. Weeds cover only ten percent of lake, probably more a plus than minus considering I don't have a lot of natural cover. Despite stocking 100 lb of TP, lots of green (not neon) algae, which is probably fine for YOY fish. I was a bit surprised to discover that my max depths were 25 to 26 feet, not 20.

My new TH feeder came & I'm excited to replace my old stinky one on the dock. Feed has been leaking out internally, not just clumping, so it is time to make a change.

Tidbit: CNBG still taking feed eagerly in 85.5 degree water, but LMB and HSB didn't show. Maybe early morning or late night feeding with lower water temps might help the big guys? I really wish someone would do a scientific study on this strategy.

Last edited by anthropic; 06/11/21 11:39 PM.

8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17,L, 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 25 HSB & 250 F1 9/20,L,180# RBT 12/20, 206, 7k TFS,100#TP 5/21, 225



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I have found out that the fish feed the best during low light conditions or low sun angles, even better if there is shade on the water. I have the TH feeder set to feed 45 min to an hour after sunrise and about the same time before sunset. If I throw feed at noon I still have a feed response, but nowhere near as good as early/late.


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Good observation. I wonder if it's more lower light level, or lower temperature, that fish like -- especially the larger predators.


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17,L, 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 25 HSB & 250 F1 9/20,L,180# RBT 12/20, 206, 7k TFS,100#TP 5/21, 225



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Originally Posted by anthropic
Good observation. I wonder if it's more lower light level, or lower temperature, that fish like -- especially the larger predators.

My bet is light. Water temp can't change that much in a few hours.


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Originally Posted by esshup
I have found out that the fish feed the best during low light conditions or low sun angles, even better if there is shade on the water. I have the TH feeder set to feed 45 min to an hour after sunrise and about the same time before sunset. If I throw feed at noon I still have a feed response, but nowhere near as good as early/late.

Re the short time after sunrise, you obviously aren't concerned with low DO levels? I have heard people warn against very early feeding for this reason.


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17,L, 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 25 HSB & 250 F1 9/20,L,180# RBT 12/20, 206, 7k TFS,100#TP 5/21, 225



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Originally Posted by anthropic
Originally Posted by esshup
I have found out that the fish feed the best during low light conditions or low sun angles, even better if there is shade on the water. I have the TH feeder set to feed 45 min to an hour after sunrise and about the same time before sunset. If I throw feed at noon I still have a feed response, but nowhere near as good as early/late.

Re the short time after sunrise, you obviously aren't concerned with low DO levels? I have heard people warn against very early feeding for this reason.

Nah, the sun is coming up, even if the O2 is a bit low it will be climbing as more sun hits the water. Most of the ponds that are fed are also aerated, so that mitigates most of the O2 swings.


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Got on a 4 wheeler and went to closest pond. Hit a 2 second test throw and watched it. Then went to back pond, a mile away, and tossed out a big coffee can of feed. Saved some to feed the bg/gsf in the creek.

And then the humidity hit. Not fun. Headed back to home in the D/FW area and stayed inside.


It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

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Originally Posted by Quarter Acre
Originally Posted by Augie
Muddy water this spring.

Let us know if the absence of aeration calms it down.


After a week of no aeration there was a noticeable improvement in water clarity. It isn't clear by any stretch of the imagination, but it is naked-eye double what it was before.

That said, I started a slow-roll restart on Friday. Two reasons I can think of to do that... daytime air temps have snapped off into the 90°s and will mostly be that way through
September, and there has been no FA present. I haven't needed to use a single drop of algaecide this year. Coincidence? Maybe. But it seems like a good trade to me.

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