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#566641 05/01/24 12:03 PM
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My 9 month old lake only has bluegill (up to 6") and redear sunfish for now. My Sweeney feeder is set to feed 1/8" pellets for one second twice a day. I've read you should only feed what they will eat in 10 minutes but mine are still eating after an hour or so. Is that a problem?

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1. Do they clean it up before the next feeding?
2. How long have you been feeding? Maybe the BG are about to get really good at it - a 9 month old BOW can't have a whole lot else for them to eat.


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TEC #566644 05/01/24 01:36 PM
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They should take off as water warms and they get to past 1 yr old. Keep doing what you are doing for now.
















TEC #566659 05/01/24 07:36 PM
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Ditto.

Do you know how much (by weight) that one second throw it? I haven't fooled with Sweeney feeders but with Texas Hunter Feeders, if I drop the spin plate from the end of the funnel I can throw a LOT of feed in 1 second. I try to keep the gap 1/4" for 1/8" round pellets, if feeding Optimal Bluegill feed I keep the gap about 5/16".


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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
TEC #566671 05/01/24 09:41 PM
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They eat almost all of the pellets until it drifts up to the shoreline. Been feeding since I stocked them last September. I'm guessing that feeder is throwing about one to one & a half cups in a second. I don't know if the Sweeney spin plate distance is adjustable. I was just wondering if I'm feeding too much since they are still eating an hour or so later. They look healthy and have a big belly.

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What is the pond size and what was your BG stocking rate? (Maybe they're a bit thin on the ground ???)


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TEC #566679 05/02/24 07:22 AM
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The problem with feeding too much is that you're adding extra nutrients into the water. Not only from uneaten food, but also from extra fish waste from the extra food they're taking in. This could be mitigated be having great pond plant life established to soak up some of those nutrients. I also yearly stock tilapia to aid in algae consumption, but in Ohio they die every fall/winter so I don't have to worry about them overproducing, I'm not sure how that goes in your area. You very well may not be overfeeding, as ewest stated, their feeding should pick up as water gets warmer, just something to keep in mind.

As for pellets floating to shore, I'm not sure how big of an area you feeder throws to, but I made a large circle with 1" black poly water line and tied it off to my dock. I just hand feed, so I throw my feed into the circle so that it minimally gets splashed out of the ring. If you don't have something to tie it off to, you can also anchor it with enough line for the ring to float.


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TEC #566682 05/02/24 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by TEC
They eat almost all of the pellets until it drifts up to the shoreline. Been feeding since I stocked them last September. I'm guessing that feeder is throwing about one to one & a half cups in a second. I don't know if the Sweeney spin plate distance is adjustable. I was just wondering if I'm feeding too much since they are still eating an hour or so later. They look healthy and have a big belly.

The way the feeder is set at the pond, does the prevailing wind push the pellets back to the shore or across the pond? If the feeder is throwing into the wind constantly, see about moving it so the feed drifts across the pond. The feed (if you are feeding smaller forage fish) should be thrown in water that is 3''-5' deep so the forage fish feel safer. Not that you have large predators now in the pond.

They might not be getting a chance to eat it before it is blown to shallow water. In my mature pond, I throw so the feed goes across a shallow area but some of the feed is thrown over deeper water. Smaller fish feed in the shallows and the predators (HSB) blow up on the feed in deeper water. The wind usually will blow it all out to deeper water and before it's half way across the pond it's all gone.

As your pond matures and the fish get bigger they will consume more of the food faster. You have the feeder set on the lowest setting now, I wouldn't worry about it.


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Lake is about an acre and 16 ft deep. First stocking was in September with 500 3-4" CNBG and 10 lbs of FHM. This March I added 100 3-5" Redear Sunfish. There isn't a lot of the pellets that wash up on the shoreline but I have considered moving the feeder for a better pellet drift. I like the easy access to the feeder from the dam and I have the feeder pointed over a 5 ft deep shelf that drops off to 16 ft.

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Originally Posted by TEC
They eat almost all of the pellets ... I was just wondering if I'm feeding too much since they are still eating an hour or so later..

There are lots of hungry BG and they have small stomach capacity. They can eat 5 or 6 times a day as temps go up and reach max metabolism. Plus all of them don't actually get a pellet each time.
















TEC #566843 05/06/24 06:30 PM
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just my 2 cents - not a pro at this but have managed multiple ponds over my 71 years - break your feeding out to 4-5 times a day. Keeps the predators (hawks) from knowing feed times and swooping in to pick off you fish. I run 4-5 seconds on each feeding but I have a mature pond with lots of BG and LMB - and do not skimp on the protein - I use Optimum feed - first class

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TEC #566850 05/06/24 07:55 PM
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Like the pics.

Big bass in the foreground, fish feeder in the background.

Almost like those two things were made to go together!

tim k #566905 05/09/24 12:59 PM
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You must go thru a lot of feed.

TEC #566911 05/09/24 03:09 PM
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First thing first. I would appreciate it if anybody that disagrees with my post own, or have owned, both Texas Hunter and Sweeney fish feeders over an reasonable length of time.

TEC, do not increase your feeder time if you're throwing 1/8" pellets. If food is regularly floating to the bank, then it's already too much. The normal option would be shorter throws and more often. That does 2 things. One, less potential shoreline pellet loss, and 2, shorter throws bring out the most aggressive BG which "should" grow the fastest. But at one second, you can't go any shorter.

The hopper auger on the Sweeneys is far better than the spin plate on the TH feeders, and at the same time it's worse because it can't be adjusted. TEC, your Sweeney can throw 1/2" pellets and a TH can't reliably throw 3/8" pellets without handyman surgery. A pallet or more of 3/8" pellets experience confirms that to me. The Sweeney thrower speed can be set on each throw time, and I recommend FS which is full speed. What it can't do is slow down the auger to handle smaller 1/8" and 3/8" pellets, nor a 50/50 mix of both. An auger that handles 1/2" pellets literally dumps 1/8" pellets. The only option I know that fixes that is constricting the hopper opening that feed pellets directly into the auger. It's easily done by trimming a place of tin, and drilling holes in it to slow things down. That's what I did, and it worked fine. Having said that, I shouldn't have to do that. All that's needed is an independent speed options for the auger and slinger, or better, a factory drop in that constricts the hopper opening. That would allow pellet size adjustments as needed.


AL

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TEC #566912 05/09/24 03:51 PM
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^^^ Great post Al!!!^^^


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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
TEC #566964 05/11/24 04:55 PM
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I mix the Bass Optimal larger floating pellets with the smaller BG pellets - I mix 2 parts BG pellets to 1 part Bass pellets. Seems to be working


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