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Feed trained bass
#505660 05/10/19 12:40 PM
Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 35
P
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Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 35
1 acre pond NE Tx, LMB, CNBG, almost 5 yrs old. Tilapia last year and this year, too.
So things were going pretty well, multiple 3 pound bass caught in spring of 3rd year, a 4 pounder last fall, harvested about 22 pounds of fish in 2018. Expected great fishing this spring but it has been terrible, low catch rates and no quality fish. Bluegill population seem thriving by virtue of activity at the feeder and catch rates near the dock. Had professionals come in this week and do a survey: very few bass, small fish underweight and the 2 that were over 16 inches were overweight. 1 fish has a wound on its back. They think river otters have eaten most of my bass. Pretty sad after all the work I've put in. They recommend placing otter traps but also to switch to feed trained bass to have quality fish faster, not have to worry about the forage base. Sounds attractive in a lot of ways but not "natural" and certainly more expensive which has me concerned because the guy recommending it will make lots of money off of me from the fish and the feed.
QUESTIONS: 1.What do you think of the river otter theory? (strange I've never heard of this despite all my research here and every issue of Pondboss for 5 yrs...)
2. What do you think about stocking feed trained bass in my small pond?

Re: Feed trained bass
Pondwish #505662 05/10/19 01:07 PM
Joined: Dec 2018
Posts: 184
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Joined: Dec 2018
Posts: 184
You should supplement with feed, regardless. I hear if there are minnows in the pond even feed trained bass will go after them. Hybrid striped bass will readily eat feed. Regular bass...different story.

Re: Feed trained bass
Pondwish #505672 05/10/19 04:03 PM
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 1,358
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Posts: 1,358
Likes: 4
Originally Posted By: Pondwish
1 acre pond NE Tx, LMB, CNBG, almost 5 yrs old. Tilapia last year and this year, too.
So things were going pretty well, multiple 3 pound bass caught in spring of 3rd year, a 4 pounder last fall, harvested about 22 pounds of fish in 2018. Expected great fishing this spring but it has been terrible, low catch rates and no quality fish. Bluegill population seem thriving by virtue of activity at the feeder and catch rates near the dock. Had professionals come in this week and do a survey: very few bass, small fish underweight and the 2 that were over 16 inches were overweight. 1 fish has a wound on its back. They think river otters have eaten most of my bass. Pretty sad after all the work I've put in. They recommend placing otter traps but also to switch to feed trained bass to have quality fish faster, not have to worry about the forage base. Sounds attractive in a lot of ways but not "natural" and certainly more expensive which has me concerned because the guy recommending it will make lots of money off of me from the fish and the feed.
QUESTIONS: 1.What do you think of the river otter theory? (strange I've never heard of this despite all my research here and every issue of Pondboss for 5 yrs...)
2. What do you think about stocking feed trained bass in my small pond?


Otter theory has plenty of precedent here. Plenty of tragedies starring river otters have been posted to this forum. Apparently they stay until they eat all the bigger fish, then they leave.

Re: Feed trained bass
Pondwish #505688 05/11/19 05:22 AM
Joined: Sep 2014
Posts: 3,657
Likes: 45
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If you want lmb/big cnbg and you have otters around then you are going to have to trap them out. I keep traps out year round here in Harrison Co. I can see some guy in another state laughing around his office when he tells the story of selling otters to Texas Parks and Wildlife. He war rid of them and some young whipper snapper in Texas bought in on the whole deal.


Do not judge me by the politicians in my City, State or Federal Government.


Tracy

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