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Originally Posted by Sunil
We are having a big fish kill in this pond. Lost about 25 adult bluegill. No sign of distress on them. We've also found about 10 dead Yellow Perch and a few dead smallies.


Not sure what's causing this, but I'm suspecting some kind of D.O. crash, which surprises me. Part of me wonders, if it was a D.O. crash, if it was due to too many fathead minnows.

Sunil:

What's the water temp and what's the water clarity? Is the clarity due to turbidity or phytoplankton? You have my number, give me a shout tomorrow if you have time.

Last edited by esshup; 07/31/22 11:24 PM.

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Scott, water temps were 77/78 just below the surface, but the water was murky or stained.

Last Thursday, we had some heavy rains, and then the water got murky brown, and the fish kill started.

I would think maybe the heavy rains turned the pond over, but I can't see how we'd have such 'bad' water in the pond.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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Often in the hottest part of summer only the top few feet of water have sufficient DO. If you get a big cold rain the pond will mix/turnover and none of the water will have enough, DO. It only takes a few minutes of very low DO to kill fish. This is exacerbated by ponds with at/near carrying capacity loads of fish as they have high DO demands.

Last edited by ewest; 08/01/22 10:59 AM.















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The pond owner ended up getting a small aeration unit the first week of August '22, and since then, no more dead floaters.

We throw out Optimal Bluegill (the long cylindrical type), and we pretty much only see fatheads feeding which had been making me think we lost most all of the stocked fish. A large subset of the (85) adult bluegill we had stocked used to hit feed on the surface, but not anymore.

Yesterday, I stocked (40) more Yellow Perch 2-3" long, (40) Bluegill <2", and (6) HSB 4-5", and (6) CC 5-6".


I actually caught a healthy adult bluegill on a waxworm yesterday too. It hit the worm at about 6' below a small bobber.

This pond continues to be a mystery.

Water temps are around 60 degrees.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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A few updates on this pond:

1) Around late Oct/early November 2022, I got about (30) 4-6" SMB from Fenders Fish Farm and put them in this pond. We did not see any mortality from this batch.

2) About 2 weeks ago, I stocked (10) HSB in the 8-10" range in this pond. Of those 10, they had 4 floaters.

The pond owners son is a merciless fish trapper, and he's now catching baby bluegill from less than 1" to about 3-4" in size, and Yellow Perch of various sizes with the largest one trapped being maybe 8" long.

When throwing out the Optimal Bluegill Feed (long cylindrical ones), you'll see tons of fatheads hitting it, and now bigger boils. Some of those bigger boils are from bluegill, but they are hitting it so fast that you can barely see what kind of fish it is. There are other fish hitting the feed, or hitting fatheads who are feeding, but I can't tell what kind of fish.

Water clarity is less than 8", so it's hard.

Pond is still polluted with fatheads.

Waiting to see any SMB, HSB, or CC.

Pond owners did send off for a water test, and all parameters looked within acceptable range.

May have them do a jar test to see if we can assist with water clarity.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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Sorry about your HSB losses.

It will be interesting to see how the SMB react to a pond "polluted with fatheads". I assume the SMB will greatly enjoy reducing the pollution!

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Yeah, the HSB losses were sad. I also bought (10) HSB for my neighborhood pond, and had one that was D.O.A. when I got them home, so 9 went into my pond. No floaters thus far, and a neighborhood kid caught one on a fly rod.

Since the day of one of the first SMB stockings, we haven't seen any SMB yet. If the largest stockers survived, they would be 7"+ by now with all the forage in the pond.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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I fished Lee's pond yesterday.

Caught (2) HSB in the 8-10" range. The first one, I believe was stocked in Spring '22, and the second one was from a stocking a few weeks ago.

Also caught several Yellow Perch and a few mature bluegill.

Some mysteries getting solved.

No sign yet of SMB or Channel Cats, but I think they're in there...


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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Fished Lee's pond again yesterday using night crawlers cut in half under a bobber with 3' lead.

Caught numerous HSB and several smaller YP.

The amount of fathead minnows is greatly reduced now, yet the YP didn't really seem that fat. All YP caught were under 6".

No sign of any SMB yet.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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YP like BG up north have a good chance of stunting if not managed. What are the YP eating if FH population is low? Not sure HSB and SMB can control YP numbers (yes if you harvest as needed). Info is for other readers as I know none of this is new to you!
















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Lee and his wife are feeding Optimal, so eventually this pond will turn into a sim-world type thing, and we'll have to see how the YP end up spawning.

We have not had a YP spawn as far as I can tell right now.

There has been a BG spawn, so hopefully the HSB, SMB, YP, and CC eat on BG frye and YOY.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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Fished Lee's pond for a while yesterday. Caught several yellow perch and......................our first Smallie!!!!!

It hit a 1.5" bluegill on a hook and bobber!!!

The smallie was about 7" long and looked healthy, but not overly plump. I stocked SMB from (3) sources, so I can't tell which batch this smallie was from thus I really don't know the growth rate.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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It's an interesting time when catching a 7" fish is exciting. smile


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Originally Posted by Theo Gallus
It's an interesting time when catching a 7" fish is exciting. smile


Word, Mabro, word!!!

I was on cloud 9!!!!


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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This pond (experiment) will be very interesting to watch develop.
















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Were the 3 groups of smb a combination of the northern strain and southern strain?

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Ron, I'm not sure. The first batch was from Hartley's Fish Farm in KS. The second batch was from Zetts in central PA, and the third batch was from Fenders Fish Farm in eastern OH.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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Lee's wife, Jackie, caught a 9-10" CC today, so as of this afternoon, all species stocked have been caught!!!


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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I am overjoyed to report that Lee's pond had a SMB spawn this spring!! On Saturday, I saw several YOY SMB!!

I'm actually quite surprised by this, but when another PB member posted about getting some SMB from Fenders Fish Farm last fall and then having a SMB spawn this spring '23, it made me wonder as I also got some SMB there last fall.

I've only seen the one more 'mature' SMB that Lee caught a few weeks ago.


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

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Originally Posted by Ron crismon
Were the 3 groups of smb a combination of the northern strain and southern strain?

I can confirm Hartley's fish are not pure northern strain. Not "bad" fish but growth is extremely slow compared to any that have tested (DNA) to be Dale Hollow strain. Not 1 grower has been able to confirm DNA testing other than my own, other than 9 I tested from Mr. Ron Crismon and yes, they match true northerns perfectly.

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Well, there is ONE other grower... wink


Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Make that two as I have them sequestered in 2 other ponds without any SMB near them.


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Many years ago, I drained and killed off the fish in a pond of about 3/4 acre. Let it fill back up a bit and stocked it with roses red fathead minnows. Before long, you could drive by on 4 wheeler and the pond seemed full of them. Then I started seeing fewer of them and before long none. Somehow, green sunfish had gotten into the pond. Within a relatively short time, they had wiped out the fathead. I added about 20 smallmouth bass. Still catch a smallmouth occasionally but none ever got very big. Still just full of green sunfish. Need to drain it again.


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Originally Posted by Rangersedge
Many years ago, I drained and killed off the fish in a pond of about 3/4 acre. Let it fill back up a bit and stocked it with roses red fathead minnows. Before long, you could drive by on 4 wheeler and the pond seemed full of them. Then I started seeing fewer of them and before long none. Somehow, green sunfish had gotten into the pond. Within a relatively short time, they had wiped out the fathead. I added about 20 smallmouth bass. Still catch a smallmouth occasionally but none ever got very big. Still just full of green sunfish. Need to drain it again.


How did the pond get re-filled?

I think you need to determine the source of the GSF before you go to that much effort again. Perhaps there was a tiny bit of water left when you drained and you did NOT rotenone?

I would like to hear more, because reports like yours a fairly common on Pond Boss.

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Refilled from rain water. No significant drainage or streams going to it. Nearest other water source is a creek which has water in puddles only through part of year and fills during rains. No green sunfish in original fathead minnows or smallmouth bass. My best guess is they swam upstream from creek during a rain; but that is about a 1/4 mile away and probably 50 feet lower elevation. Installed an overflow pipe so can't swim up overflow again if that is what happened. Also possible but unlikely a neighbor could have thrown some in to be mean. There is also the theory that they could have hitchhiked on critters. I don't know how they got there. They definitely weren't in water or pond for first year rosey reds were in there. Something similar happened to a brother's pond that he didn't want fish in (detailed on here in old thread) and was also a long ways significantly uphill from another water source.

Last edited by Rangersedge; 11/12/23 09:45 AM.

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