Pond Boss Magazine
https://www.pondboss.com/images/userfiles/image/20130301193901_6_150by50orangewhyshouldsubscribejpeg.jpg
Advertisment
Newest Members
fethiye, iamjimmyjones, MinaSilva, KyleR, Penyy25
18,402 Registered Users
Forum Statistics
Forums36
Topics40,823
Posts556,045
Members18,403
Most Online3,612
Jan 10th, 2023
Top Posters
esshup 28,269
ewest 21,448
Cecil Baird1 20,043
Bill Cody 15,062
Who's Online Now
13 members (FireIsHot, Jason D, Omaha, catscratch, GeoKuntz, Justin W, H20fwler, e_stallman, LeighAnn, HoneyHole, BJ Nick, Tbar, Theo Gallus), 547 guests, and 189 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Page 1 of 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
#15602 07/31/04 11:15 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
I think all pond owners know the feeling when the contractor pulls up to the site and starts to unload the tools of the trade. After almost a three year wait, Monday was the day for me. Contractor scheduling and weather was the cause of the delay but the wait is now history.

This new pond will be a compare and contrast of sorts. My first pond was constructed, pre-Pond Boss, and the mistakes are too numerous to mention. Hopefully this pond will showcase all the great advice and guidance that has been given here on this board. Many, many thanks go out to all you fish squeezers.

My new puddle is 80' in diameter by 8' deep. The size of the pond was limited by three factors; the site is sandwiched between two neighboring parcels, the location of my barn and the location of the stream. The pond was excavated from an intermittent stream that is located about 20' from my barn.

Soils on this site are classed as silt loam. The first sentence of the soil classification (Soil Survey of Ulster County NY) reads as follows, "This deep, nearly level, poorly drained and very poorly drained soil formed in lacustrine deposits of silt, very fine sand and clay." Further reading states that about the only thing this soil is good for is PONDS. I do not know the entire acreage of the watershed that feeds the site but water is the least of my concerns. Jed Clampett may have hit oil but I'll match him in water.

Now let me move on to some construction specifics. The equipment used for this project was a Cat 320 excavator and a tri-axle dump. Contractor arrived about 7:30 a.m. and we were hauling dirt by 8:00 a.m. Except for a 15 minute coffee break, they worked non-stop and finished the day about 5:30 p.m.. The excavator had a 1 yard bucket but each scoop was heaped, holding about 1.5 yards. Each load was around 15 yards (9-10 buckets). All spoils were dumped 300-400 feet from the pond. Average trip time 6-8 minutes. At the end of the day, I counted 65 piles in the field and 2 loads went to a neighbor. If my math is correct thats 67 loads @ 15 yds/load for a total of roughly 1000 yds. Using the figure of 7.5 gallons of water/cu ft, thats roughly a 200,000 gallon hole. Cost was $1,500.00 and on top of that, the contractor, a good friend, has offered the use of his dozer for FREE.

After the contractor left, I spent a couple of hours hauling structure in place, which consisted of rock piles (for crayfish), logs/brush and artificial christmas trees (I wanted to experiment). Time was of the essence due to the fact that rain was predicted for the next two days. One set back, and a needless one on my part, was that I did not get the diffuser in place because I procrastinated and didn't get all the equipment ready beforehand. I paid the price by the end of the following day. By Tuesday night, the rain had filled the pond over half full and by wednesday, the water level was 8" below the outlet. Predictions had been for about 1/2" of rain Tuesday and isolated thundershowers on Wednesday. Like previously stated, water is not a concern.

My gameplan now is to let the pond sit for a few weeks. The water is cloudy but beginning to clear. I need to come up with a plan to get the diffuser in place, all suggestions welcomed. I'd like to be ready to stock by September. My GOAL for this pond is little kids with BIG smiles holding Big Bluegill!

For this I will stock with bluegill and attempt to control numbers with a combination of channel cats (for occasional table fare), fishing and seining. I realize that I may be heading for pitfalls but its an experiment that I approach with high hopes. Given the size of the pond, if this experiment should fail, I'm prepared to accept fate and try a new approach. I will update this thread periodically with my progress.

Russ

#15603 08/01/04 08:11 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
I think it is best to place your diffuser after the pond is full.

Mount your diffuser on a disk shaped snow saucer or used, well worn, car tire. Both when tied to a rope, can be pulled into the pond from shore. They are like a sled and slide easily across the bottom. I can send you pictures if necessary.

Why are you not stocking LM bass in the pond?. Bass will do a better job than cats at controlling the bgill. cats will eat bgill, but I don't think they are as efficient at eating bgill as bass. I could be wrong. Want big bgill and no overcrowding problem?; stock only male bgill.

Fishing will be more exciting with bass than w/ cats. Northern bass will grow faster than the cats since cats do better in warmer waters. I tend to be biased for bass vs cats. Most all "nothern hatchery cats for sale" are raised in AK and south. Cats with no bass present might spawn and you could be overrun with little catfish. I would rather have the problem of too many bass rather than too many catfish. Abundant catfish will tend to make the water cloudy esp when they are spawning size.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15604 08/02/04 05:27 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Hi Bill,

Due to my stocking plan, I thought this might get your attention so I'm glad you responded.

First, let me update the progress of the pond. With a good shower saturday night, the pond is now full which puts the waterline about 6" below grade. Since this is an excavated pond, the outlet being the original stream bed, my initial thoughts were to build a 4-6" dam (raise the stream bed) thus bringing the water level up to ground level. Because of the amount of runoff we receive from snow melt, I've decided to wait until next spring and let mother nature dictate whether or not to the raise the level. The 6" "reserve" may just be insurance against any flooding.

Bill, someone on the board posted pictures of your idea about using an old saucer or tire for a diffuser base. These are certainly options I will give thought to.

The question about using cats with BG was one I pondered for a while. With my goal being BIG BG, I know one option is to go bass heavy, something I learned here. However, the various conversations of cats, as potential predators, has piqued my interest.

Here were my "positive" thoughts.
1. Given the small size of this pond, its offers a good opportunity to experiment. If the experiment fails it would be easy to correct, drain and start from scratch if necessary.
2. Cats would make a nice addition to the table, on occasion.

Now for the concerns.
1. Will cats "only" be able to control BG numbers? My license includes seining so that option is also available.
2. Given the soil types here, I'm concerned about turbidity and what effect it would have. From past experience, I had a couple of snapping turtles in the stream and just their moving about the bottom would result in some cloudiness to the water. This is one point you mentioned.
3. We talked awhile back about male BG only but I'm not confident of my ability to sex out male only. In one of your posts on the subject, you mentioned that if one female gets in, it will have a major impact. I did plan on talking to the hatchery about male only BG though.

Another thought I had was to go bass heavy with a few cats (to satisfy my palate). The cat, BG scenario is not, cast in stone, so I'm open to any and all responses.

Russ

#15605 08/02/04 09:13 AM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 764
N
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
N
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 764
Russ, have you considered feeding the bluegill? A friend of mine has a very small pond (50' X 150'). He has LMB, white bass, yellow perch, rock bass, crappie, bluegill and green sunfish. He has access to all the fathead minnows he wants and feeds them heavily. A fish feeder would do the same thing. He has a good spawn but no successful reproduction because of the heavy predation. This is very much a put, grow and take operation. You might consider something like this.


Norm Kopecky
#15606 08/02/04 06:53 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
There are no ponds near me that have just cats and bgill. There is one (0.2 ac) that is "cat heavy" (larger cats) although a few bass are present. This pond seems to remain fairly balanced but the large bgill and all sizes of bass are scarse; probably cat predation. Cats do not spawn there.

I am not sure how many others here have experience with just cats and bgill.

I think his would work best if the cats did not spawn. This way you have direct control of their numbers. If your rock pile structures are farily tight and openings are smallish where cats could not get into a cavity to spawn your idea has a better chance of succeeding. A nearby pond with large cement rock "condos" promoted cat spawning here. Weeds improved survival of young cats. Overabundant cats will be a turbidity problem. Your underwater structures may inhibit proper seining of the pond. .

Your pond is small, 80 ft circle (0.12acre). As you mention the big benefit here is being able to quickly drain and start over.

Here is another idea. At first try the male only bgill, feed them for growth. Maybe add a few cats for table use. When you see that you have mistakenly added a female bgill (presence of young bgill) then it is time to add the cats OR more cats for population control. This method will give you experience sorting male and female bgill. Sorting/separating is easier than you may think. The bigger the adult bgill is and the closer to spawning season, the easier it is to separate them .

As I said earlier, my main concern with numerous cats in your small pond is potential for turbidity problems if you get too many adult breeder cats. Last week we saw in a pond where a large catfish had "dug" out a cavity the size of a bushel basket in the side of a clay lined pond. The even more impressive thing about this was the cavity was dug out into and through a 8"-10" thick layer of 1"-2" limestones that were placed as a stone ledge along the upper bank wall to a depth of 3'. Saw the fish in the cavity. A very determined fish!.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15607 08/03/04 10:59 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Norm,

First let me congratulate you and your family on the success of your aquatic achievements. I'm sure it was(is) alot of work but the "payback" no doubt makes it all worthwhile. Lots of smiling faces in the Pond Boss article.

I appreciate the thoughts you passed along concerning my newest pond. One of my early thoughts was to introduce the BG and cats together and pellet feed both until the BG begin to spawn. At that point I was going to ween the cats off feed hoping they would start to prey on the baby BG. Whatever avenue I pursue, I would like to incorporate a feeding program.

Bill,

Referencing the structure in my pond, during construction, I had the contractor cut a shelf along the edge of the pond. The total length is about 40 feet.
It starts out about 1' below waterline, extends out into the pond 18" for a length of 20'. On this I piled rocks. The rocks are piled high enough so that they show above the waterline. My intent was to give the crayfish a place to call home. I never gave any thought to cats using this area for spawning.
The shelf then drops to about 4' below waterline, extends out into the pond about 3-6' for another 20 feet. This is where I placed the logs/brush. In summation, this gives me a contiguous 40' shelf comprised of rocks, logs, brush and some attempt at contouring. I also added 4 - 4' artifical christmas trees.

The bottom of the pond (roughly 50' diameter) is void of structure right now however, I'm thinking about adding another brush pile or two.

As was stated earlier, I did have initial thoughts about what effect the cats would have on turbidity. This was(is) my biggest concern.
After reading all the input so far, I'm starting to lean towards getting the BG stocked next month and start them on feed. I'm going to see if the hatchery owner will educate me on sexing out male only. Come spring we'll see where I stand. If BG offspring appear, I'll bring in some LMB from my other pond.

In the meantime, I took a pH reading today and its in the range of 7.6 - 7.8. Test kit was one you use for pools. Water looks a light lime green. I hope to have a secchi disc made by the weekend to measure turbidity.

Russ

#15608 08/04/04 06:52 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ - Years ago when I did a partial draw down of my larger pond, I built a rock pile like you describe. Worked good until ice from several winters knocked a lot of the uppermost rocks off the pile. I takes real large rocks to withstand ice movement.

I suggest you not put any brush or items in the bottom of your pond. If you ever want to seine the pond this "trash" will be a source for lots of aggrevation. Seining would be easiest and most efficient if you partially removed at least 50% of teh water first and consolidate the fish into a smaller area. The "cover" should be confined in the upper layer of water.

During winter you will find that almost all the larger fish will be concentrated 85% to 95% of the time in the deepest, central, 50 diameter basin irrregardless of the presence or absence of cover.

PS: I you need advice on separating male and female bgill email me for help.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15609 08/06/04 04:52 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Bill,

With the Hudson River only a couple of miles from my place, I've seen the power of ice in tidal situations. That river has produced some amazing ice "sculptures". I didn't think ice would be a big problem concerning the rocks I've added to my pond but I'll just have to wait till spring to see the results.

Russ

p.s. I've sent you an email.

#15610 08/06/04 09:55 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Time usually produces more answers.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15611 08/21/04 01:17 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Rain can be a wolf in sheeps clothing. The effects of that statement have hit hard here in the past week.

With this new pond, rain now seems to be my enemy turning the water coffee color, light no sugar. Yesterday, after some rain during the week, I was able to see the tips of the artifical christmas trees that were added for structure. The tips are about 8" below the surface. Last night and for the most of today, its been rain, heavy at times. Any gains in visibility have been washed away. The long range forecast is for good weather starting tomorrow and continuing all week. This will offer me an opportunity to take daily measurements, using the secchi disc, to see how fast the pond recovers.

One thing that really has me concerned \:\( is a house that is being built upstream from the pond. After some rain we received about a week ago, I noticed sediment being carried downstream from this lot. Silt fencing is in place but there is one drainage ditch that collects water from the property and deposits it in the stream that feeds the pond. I called the owner and asked him to make an effort to get a lawn started. Thursday they seeded half the yard. Hopefully they can finish the rest during the week. Todays rain is taking its toll on the still unfinished portion and the pond is on the receiving end.

Moving on, my current project involves getting the aeration system installed which hopefully I can complete this week. For northern pond owners, I've posted a question about my system under the topic, AERATION: SYSTEMS QUESTIONS. See the heading "Winterization and Algae."

In September, stocking should begin with "male only" bluegill. I plan to record lengths and weights for tracking purposes. I'll also need to establish some type of fencing to keep the fish in. Its amazing how busy this small pond can be.

Russ

#15612 08/28/04 07:10 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Last weekend was a washout, which resulted in a very muddy pond but this weekend made amends. Actually, the weather all week has been sunny with seasonal temps. Great week to get some work done around the pond.

The last of the grading has been completed. The shoreline was spruced up a bit by adding more rocks to the existing pile. I did some "shopping" at the local landfill and walked away with a snow coaster for the diffuser, an extension cord for the compressor and some hardware cloth.

Spent part of today installing the diffuser, which is working fine, I think. This is my first aeration system. While floating over top of the diffuser, I could feel cool water so it seems that mixing is taking place. I took a couple of dives to checkout the diffuser but visibility hindered my quest. Like others have posted, the compressor does get hot so a fan has been added to the "shopping" list. I also installed a couple of floodlights for those times when we want to do some night skating.

All week long I took measurements to see how much the pond would recover from last weeks rains and by Friday afternoon, visibility was 39".

Next project is to construct some "border crossings" out of the hardware cloth. I hope to start stocking in a couple of weeks.

Russ

#15613 09/12/04 04:30 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Couple of updates.

The contractor, who is building a house upstream from the pond, has seeded his yard and the results are quite noticable. Our area received a good drenching the other day but I did not see the runoff problem that I experienced a few weeks back.

Picked up a small 5" square fan to help cool the compressor. After running the unit for 5 hours the other day (room temps were about 80-82 degrees) the compressor was only warm to the touch. Installed a timer for the compressor and fan.

I hope to hear from the hatchery soon. The frogs and tadpoles have seen the inside of the kids' nets so often that I'm sure they are looking for some relief.

Russ

#15614 08/14/05 08:30 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
After seeing the results of this little pond last year, I knew one of my projects for 2005 was to expand it. The project was completed this past week and again I'm very pleased with the results. We removed 38 - 10 wheeler loads of material adding (guessing) another 100,000 gallons.

The weather here has been dry and hot with no significant rain storms on the horizon. In the next few days I hope to add some more structure and put the diffuser in place.

Russ

#15615 08/14/05 08:38 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
Moderator
Lunker
Online Confused
Moderator
Lunker
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
Russ:

How about an update on the fish? Last entry I noted from 2004 said you were planning on Male-only BG. What did you stock/what did they do?

P.S. I love long-term updates like this. It always takes me a while before I realize WHY I don't remember seing all those posts. It's like getting a whole new thread again.


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i.pinimg.com]
#15616 08/17/05 11:12 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Hey Theo, glad to see you are keeping tabs on me. Sorry to disappoint you but I'm fishless. I'll explain.

After the initial construction last year, I exchanged a couple of e-mails with Bill C and decided to try a male only BG pond. Bill sent me info on gender identification but I was not entirely confident of my sexing capabilities. I contacted a local fish farmer about getting male BG, which he said would not be a problem, but never delivered. \:\( With the winter season just over the horizon, I decided to try Bill C's ID notes and fish a small pond that a neighboring farmer owns. ALL the fish I caught were covered with black spots. Coverage ranged from 10% to over 75%!! Needless to say, I was not stocking anything from that pond. Knowing that I wanted to expand the pond this year, I decided to delay the stocking.

Now with all the pictures posted on the board, over the last few months, showing the difference in male/female BG AND using Bill's guide, I'm much more confident that I can sex the fish I want. Once the pond refills, I plan to make another attempt at stocking. We have had a few thunderstorms lately but nothing significant. Right now, water level is a couple of feet.
I will post my progress.

Russ

#15617 08/18/05 07:23 AM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 3,075
M
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
M
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 3,075
Russ,

I'm jumping in the middle or end of this thread and apologize for that, but I noticed you still have stocking options. Here is one for you to consider.

Stock your BG, best strain you can find and all sexes, but use all female only LMB as your predators. If you can 100% positive limit the LMB to females, then this could be better than cats as predator. LMB help grow the largest BG's I have ever seen. Plus, on occasion, your kids would get a real treat with a lunker pulling on that string. The key is to get 100% female LMB, complete assurance that no LMB are in the pond now, and protection from the introduction of any unwanted male LMB.

It won't be easy, but I'm intrigued by it and will also try this approach in a very small pond that I have. The reward is smiles on kid's faces.

#15618 08/18/05 08:02 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ :

With a small pond like yours I would strongly consider exactly what ML suggested. In fact if it were my pond , which it is not , I would take Bill's advice to use bass as the predator and ML's to use only female bass and add the best local strain of BG you can find. It should only take a few female bass for your pond. Feeding the BG would be good not only for the fish but for kids and kids at heart to watch. I might even try to pick up a few male only RE for snail control if they will live in NY waters { ? cold }. It sure sounds like fun !!! ewest
















#15619 08/18/05 10:33 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
ML,

Your timing is perfect. Middle of the thread but the beginning of the project. Initially, I thought about stocking CC for two reasons; (1) I like catfish and (2) it would be an attempt (experiment) to find out whether or not CC would be an effective predator, keeping the BG in check. That thought process has changed. The biggest reason is turbidity, which Bill C mentioned early on. In the year since the pond was first excavated I've noticed that ANY movement/disturbance of the bottom results in a cloud of sediment. In addition to giving the neighborhood kids a fishing hole, I'd also like to provide them with a chance to observe the fish. If a frog kicks up a cloud of dust as it hauls the mail across the bottom of the pond, I can only imagine the outcome from a bunch of CC.

With my goal set on having a panfish pond, I'd like to have a range of fish sizes for the kids to enjoy. Knowing that BG will overpopulate and stunt quickly, I gave serious thought to Bill's recommendation of using only male BG. It would offer me better population control and I could stock different sizes. That was the plan but, as stated in my previous post, I never received the fish.

Now to present day. Along with observing the pond for a year, I've had the pleasure of reading all the great information here on PB related to panfish. More fuel for the fire. Most recently was a post by Cecil stating his experiment with male only BG has suffered a setback due to the presence of BG fry. Another post of interest is the one titled, "How did these fish arrive?". This pond is the result of excavating out an intermittent stream that runs through my property so I suspect I will end up with some surprises down the road. From all this information, I've come away with the following thoughts. I still want to try a male BG only pond but I suspect that a female or two is going to slip in due to my inexperience of sexing fish. If that occurs, Plan "B" would kick in where I add a predator, most likely LMB, and now with ML and Ewest's advice I could experiment with female only.

I'm excited about the project and if everything goes Murphy on me, its small enough to drain and start over. In the meantime I'm in a holding pattern, waiting for rain. I do appreciate any and all comments.

Russ

#15620 08/19/05 07:37 AM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 3,075
M
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
M
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 3,075
Russ, what's the worst that could happen? You could get a male LMB and have lots of LMB and large BG for the kids to catch. Read Jayman's post on his kid's pond where the small LMB literally jump out of the water to hit his 5 year old's Rapalla.

Talk about exciting a kid...nothing will excite like a hungry predator LMB (in fresh water at least).

#15621 08/19/05 10:33 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
ML,

If I could get this puddle to the point of producing jumping fish, no doubt that would make for some memorable moments.

Russ

#15622 08/19/05 02:17 PM
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,025
Likes: 1
B
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
B
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,025
Likes: 1
Russ, I am disappointed that you would let someone's prejudices against CC dissuade you.
They will only stir up the bottom if very hungry. I'm sure the annointed LMB or even the HSB would scavenge rather than face the ultimate.
The CC eats FLOATING pellets, forages BG, shiners, etc. Just go for it! What's the worst that can happen; you have to fish them out and have a fish fry? :rolleyes:


#15623 08/19/05 03:34 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,892
D
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
D
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,892
Russ, there is only one thing my Grandchildren enjoy more than seeing 5+ pound cats eat pellets. When they catch one they really go nuts.

#15624 08/19/05 03:55 PM
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 54
D
Member
Offline
Member
D
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 54
I stocked 300 5-7 inch CC 14 months ago in my pond. There are some CC up to 18 inches long now. Not only the kids but everyone that comes out to my pond loves to see them feed. No problems with stirring up the bottom yet. My only complaint is when I fish for bg I catch more CC than bg. These fish seem to eat anything and everything.

#15625 08/19/05 05:23 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 3,075
M
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
M
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 3,075
Keep in mind, folks, Russ is talking about a small pond, 1/4 acre I think.

#15626 08/19/05 10:46 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
ML,

You're being generous. The pond is smaller than 0.25 acres.

BM, DD and DC,

I certainly appreciate the comments. At the time of my choice, I had learned two things from reading PB, (1) BG will reproduce and stunt and (2) better get a predator to address #1. In addition, I had zero experience with CC but decided to try them for the two reasons I stated in a previous post.

Since my initial post didn't generate too much interest, I was glad to read Bill's thoughts on how to achieve my goal. Guessing I would need a fair number of CC as predators, the comment about turbidity piqued my concern. I really didn't want to chance a cloudy pond. In all fairness, he did mention in a subsequent post about adding a few CC for table fare.

Within the past few days, I have received some real good information on other approaches that may achieve my goals, along with gaining an education on others experiences with CC. Its all good and I will take the time to digest it all. Thanks for taking the time to respond.

Russ

#15627 08/20/05 01:24 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ - If you think sexing bgill is risky wait till you try sexing LMbass especially out of breeding season.
When I chose male bgill for my restocking they first go into a rearing cage for at least one summer. Sometimes some remain in the cage for as long as two summers. This wait period allows for additional development of sexual characters. Releasing "all male" bgill prematurely into your pond often produces results such as presence of bgill fry (Cecil's recent experience). If you reread Cecil's post, he mentioned that due to special conditions the fish were prematurely added to the pond from the holding cage and the "wait time" did not go the proper period. Cecil was also dealing with several hundred bgill, all at one time, which when under pressure and in a hurry can contribute to errors. I never trust someone else's sorting; I always double check my fish if it is an important project.

C.Catfish when sexually mature (larger than 20") very often "work the sediments" and disturb bottom materials during spawing activities. Some people consider 2-3 ft of water visibility as clear water.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15628 08/21/05 09:25 AM
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,025
Likes: 1
B
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
B
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,025
Likes: 1
Mr. Cody, in regards to sex of fish, I read an advertisement of feed that affects the gonadal production. Is this something that hatcheries use for forcing a sex of fish, or did I misread the article?


#15629 08/21/05 11:06 AM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 3,973
G
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
G
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 3,973
BC, It might be true of sexually mature channels stirring up pond bottom but it is more likely the result of "too many". We have few cats in most ponds (<100/acre)but even in ponds stocked with catfish as goal with up to 500/acre no problem with suspended sediment. Even in ponds with lots of big ones usually not muddy. However most are very fertile from heavy feeding.

Russ, consider stocking a few, maybe 50, channel catfish to start with. If you do not like them 9 and do see how) catch them out. If you do like them they are chaep and you can add more later on. They do great with food and much easier for kids to catch than bass. However you MUST have some bass to control bluegill channel catfish will not do this.


Greg Grimes
www.lakework.com
#15630 08/21/05 11:39 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
bmeister - fish food additives for sex reversal in fish is new technology and not widely used at this time. I know very little about it.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15631 08/21/05 12:49 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
BM :

Do you remember where you saw the info on food additives to effect fish sex development . I was not aware of that info and would like to learn about the process. I have been wondering if fish could be made sterile by some means that was practical . Not on lots of small fish but on a few larger fish and in a manner that it did not effect their growth or life expectancy. ewest
















#15632 08/21/05 01:30 PM
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,025
Likes: 1
B
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
B
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,025
Likes: 1
Eric, I dont remember, but it was one of the major fish feed suppliers. It has been several months ago while browsing for feeds. Will try and find it though.


#15633 09/03/05 07:24 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Update:

Interesting development today. While sitting by the pond this afternoon with good intentions of diving into the most recent PB magazine, I noticed alot of activity in the pond. Upon closer inspection, I spotted a wolf pack of 8 fish sitting in the "shallows" with a stalkers look to them. As I watched, the stalkers became attackers in short order. We've got fish, but not what I was expecting !

Some background information. For those following this post, you'll remember I did some expansion work to this puddle about 1 month ago. In preparation for the work, I drained the pond....well almost. Actually I drained it down to the point where 6" of water remained. I dug a sump pit for the pump but due to the contour of the pond bottom, not all the water made its way into the pit, therefore the pond did not drain completely. The pumping was completed about a week before the contractor was to arrive.

During the wait for the contractor, my neighbor asked if he could take his ATV for a spin through the pond. (He was first in line when they handed out the boys, ATVs and mud gene.) As he hit the water, it exploded with jumping fish. I thought they were baitfish only because I netted some fish that made there way into the pond last year and they turned out to be creek chubs. The fish I noticed today didn't even remotely look or act like the chubs. After netting a couple, it turns out they are bass. A nice 4" and 6" catch.

With this new and unexpected development, my gameplan has changed. With the mindset of a traditional BG/Bass pond, it looks like I need to get some forage fish in place. I'm going to talk my dad into taking a little fishing trip to a nearby lake and try to convince some BG to take a ride with us. The pond is still about 8' low, but the newly excavated end has about 3' of water in it and measures roughly 30' in diameter. I'm looking to the board for some advice on how many BG I should add at this point? I'm open to any and all comments.

Russ

#15634 09/03/05 07:36 PM
Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 1,097
Likes: 18
E
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
E
Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 1,097
Likes: 18
I think you have a sound plan, I suggest catching 60 adults per surface acre, I'm also attaching Bill Cody's bgill identification chart for reference :

#15635 09/03/05 07:47 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Good pictures Eastland, thanks for the reply!

Russ

#15636 09/17/05 06:17 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
With the recent expansion, I now have a kidney shaped pond. Estimated water volume is 300,000 gallons. This pond will have two 9" disk diffusers. My compressor will not handle both diffusers simultaneously. A cheap solution I found was to utilize a "Y" garden hose fitting with shutoffs. For this ponds size, two 9" disk diffusers is probably overkill however, I had the extra diffuser so I decided to install it.

Update: Due to a major rain storm this past weekend, the pond is now full. This gave me the opportunity to test both diffusers. One diffuser is set at 8', the other at 11'. According to the pressure gauge, both operate at 4 psi. Based on the charts from the manufacturer, the compressor is putting out 1.25 cfm. By the looks of the surface "boil", I'm happy with the results.

#15637 09/22/05 05:56 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
After rereading the comments here and in other posts, I've decided on the following game plan.

Due to the size of this puddle and the fact that the level is down about 8', initial stocking will include a pound of fatheads and a dozen 3-4" native BG. These fish will be placed in the recently expanded portion of the pond that is roughly 30'x30' and has about 3-4' of water. As the pond fills, I will add more BG of various sizes until the total reaches 60-70 fish.

This pond receives water from an intermittent stream. During the expansion of the pond, a small "silt pond" was constructed roughly 100' from the inlet of the pond.


Next spring I will monitor the pond for a BG spawn. If a female BG got by in the initial stocking and a spawn occurs, I will add 10 lmb to serve as predators. Once these fish reach a certain size, 2lbs?, (need some advice here) they will be fished out and replaced.


I plan to feed and aerate from May till October.

#15638 10/08/05 04:11 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Update:

Two weeks ago my dad and I added 15 4-5" BG to the pond with a pound of fatheads. These fish were obtained from a local hatchery. To date, we are happy to report that there have been no floaters. Last week, I picked up a bag of pond chow from the local TSC just to see if these fish would answer the call. To our surprise, within two or three minutes, the fish were hitting the pellets. At this point the pond is just an oversized aquarium but I can relate to the other hand feeders about the joy in seeing the fish at feeding time.

With the remnants of Tammy showering down on us, hopefully this "aquarium" will start to take on the shape of a pond. Rains/showers are expected for most of the coming week so expectations are high. If the rainfall is sufficient enough to raise the level 3-4 feet, we'll add some additional fish. I snapped some pictures of the pond yesterday and will try to post them later.

Second update: Its been about four hours since I first posted and the pond has risen over three feet. At this rate it will be full by afternoon. Now some good news/bad news. Bad news; the side of pond that was excavated a couple of months ago is leading to runoff problems, as expected with the heavy rains we've received. Light coffee is the pond color for the day. From past experience I know this will settle after the rains subside but it certainly lacks eye appeal.

Good news. Last year I had trouble with runoff from a house that was being built near me. The intermittent stream that feeds this pond runs through their property. Any runoff we received was laden with sediments. A year has passed and the site is recovering from the construction. The stream is running again (due to todays rain storm) and I'm glad to report that the runoff is clear, actually its much better than I anticipated.

Last update for today: Another check of the pond and its full. Thats about an acre-foot of water in a 12 hour period. Some of the logs I put in for structure have floated to the surface. Using some grapnels, I corraled the logs and tied them off to a nearby tree. Within a couple of weeks, I hope they will settle to the bottom.

#15639 10/09/05 04:58 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
With yesterdays torrential rains, the pond took on a color of light coffee. Figuring it would be a while before the water cleared, I was very much surprised to find the pond clear this morning. Visibility was around 20". The visibility was so good that I counted 6 LMB and some fatheads in one of the shallow parts of the pond. The plan now is go ahead with some additional stocking of BG.

#15640 10/09/05 06:54 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ :

You are doing well and the pond gods are all smiles. How many LMB do you think are in the pond and what size? How big will the pond be when full and will it stay full most of the year? YOY (2 in.) BG are cheap in the fall. If you add a few in a mth. that will give you 2 year classes of BG plus fatheads to start your forage base. You could also wait and buy some 4 in. BG in March to add and also have 2 year classes. How many of what to add all depends on the pond size and whats in there now and your pond goals. ewest
















#15641 10/09/05 08:57 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
ewest,

I'm going to guess the size of the pond to be 0.15 acres. The size is limited by lot size and the fact that I have an outbuilding on this lot. My contractor jokingly asked if I was going to expand the pond again next year, leaving the outbuilding on an island. Due to the fact that this pond is fed by an intermittent stream, in a normal year, I expect the level to drop 6-8". If the need arises, there is a well on this lot that could be used to top off the pond.

After yesterdays deluge, I was really surprised to see any fish. The half dozen LMB that caught my eye today were about 5-6". Tomorrow I'm going to call the hatchery to see if they have any 4-5" BG. The total stocking of BG will be around 60-70 fish, like Eastland posted.

With all the advice and support I've received from the board, I'm really excited about the prospects for this little pond.

Russ

#15642 10/20/05 11:28 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Stocked an additional 65 4-5" BG on 10-15. This week I found one dead and removed two others. The two that were removed had problems. Both were lethargic and swimming near the surface. I was able to scoop them up in a net without any problems. Both had clear patches/blotches on the anal and caudal fins along with a 3/4" patch/blotch on their body which looked slightly raised. One eye on one of the fish appeared sunken.

During my daily walk around the pond, I have noticed some BG hanging around the structure that was placed in the pond. The number of fatheads is dwindling so the bass must be having fun. I'm still tossing feed and have noticed that I get more activity in the afternoon than early morning. The kingfishers have returned and I noticed an eel has found his way into the pond.
Pond soup. \:\)

#15643 10/26/05 05:01 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
While walking the pond perimeter the other day, my dad and I noticed a half dozen BG in the outlet of the pond. The outlet, on my property, is about 9' wide, 10' long by 10" deep. It is clear of any vegetation. Where the outlet enters the neighboring property, it narrows to about 5' and is loaded with mixed vegetation, i.e. grasses, shrubs, cattails. Its a night and day transition.
Being concerned with the presence of BG in the outlet and not sure if the vegetation jungle would dissuade them from an escape attempt, I decided to try a fish "gate" made from hardware cloth. We installed a 10' piece of 1/4" hardware cloth, anchored with rebar stakes. One thing I noticed right away, which Bill Cody mentioned in a prior post, was the problem with leaves. It does catch and hold leaves but if the "gate" works to keep the fish in the pond, I don't mind the daily cleaning of leaves for the next couple of weeks.

With the addition of the leaves, the water has taken on a dark hue. During cloudy days, its hard to see the fish in the water. A few will take feed but not as many as I anticipated. I do not know what the water temperature is but the diffusers will go idle this weekend. In another post, Bill C mentioned that he shuts his aeration down when water temps are between 44-48 degrees F. Is this the point at which fish, in my area, would begin to seek the comforts of the warmer bottom layer of water??

#15644 10/26/05 06:50 AM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
Moderator
Lunker
Online Confused
Moderator
Lunker
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
 Quote:
Bill C mentioned that he shuts his aeration down when water temps are between 44-48 degrees F. Is this the point at which fish, in my area, would begin to seek the comforts of the warmer bottom layer of water??
I think that's a good summation. If I remember BC's info, he said that the water temps top to bottom should be the same (he had a nice $2 word for it I can't recall) when the temps are 44-48 deg. As the surface temps drop below that, the bottom water should be warmer and hence more attractive to fish.


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i.pinimg.com]
#15645 11/04/05 06:24 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Update:

This pond has experienced some recent algae growth over the past few weeks which has me concerned. In an effort to say keystrokes, I'll post a link to the thread where the problem has been posted.

Algae Problem

#15646 05/08/06 02:34 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
This little puddle has really changed since my last post. There wasn't much activity to talk about until the water (surface) temp hit the mid 50's. At this point, the bass and BG started showing up. I've been tossing a few handfuls of pellets for the BG but the majority do not seem interested. I thought perhaps the BG are feasting on the tadpoles, that have exploded in the pond, but the 'poles seem to have free reign of the pond without any concern for the BG.

Along with the explosion of tadpoles, the algae has also taken off. I had anticipated some algae and my first attempts at manual removal yielded satisfactory results but as the daytime temps have warmed, the battle was turning in favor of the green team. While thinking of ways to hasten its removal, I hit upon an idea that was sure to have all the neighbors talking about the nut at the end of the road. Mimicking the same technique used to corral oil slicks, I hit the local Wal-mart and purchased 4 lengths of "pool noodles". The ones I purchased were 4" in diameter, 5' in length and had a gear shape with fish hook shaped teeth (looking at them from the end). Each one also had a 3/4" center hole that ran the entire 5' length. On my first attempt at skimming the pond, I fed a piece of clothesline through each one, giving me a 20' length of algae "boom" and ran it across the pond. This didn't work too well given the fact that the noodles were designed to float. I needed to add some weight and came up with the perfect use for a 20' lenght of 3/4" electrical cable I had left over from when I built my house. After sliding this into the center hole of the noodles, my sister and I gave it another shot. Much to my surprise, it worked better than expected. We simply corraled all the green goo using this boom and pushed it out the pond outlet. Total time to clear the pond, after the intial engineering changes, was about 15 minutes.

I'm still chuckling over this and the pond looks much better. I almost can't wait till the next batch needs skimming.

Next two projects for this little puddle will be placing some riprap along one edge and building a small dam to raise the water level another foot.

#15647 05/08/06 07:20 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
Moderator
Lunker
Online Confused
Moderator
Lunker
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
Ingenious, Russ!


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i.pinimg.com]
#15648 05/08/06 07:51 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thanks Theo.

The next trick is to make it the lazy man's algae skimmer. To accomplish this, one end of the rope will be anchored to a stake near the pond outlet while the other end of the rope is attached to a radio controlled boat. This will allow me to circle the wagons and dump everything at the outlet.

#15649 05/08/06 07:58 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
Moderator
Lunker
Online Confused
Moderator
Lunker
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
Then you invite the local RC Yacht Club to hold a miniature regatta on your pond and charge them to clean up your FA for you! \:D


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i.pinimg.com]
#15650 05/14/06 05:06 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Over the past week, I've laid up about 60' of riprap along one edge of the pond. Last night I took a late night stroll after work and was amazed to see the pond life in and about the rip rap. Couple dozen crayfish, ranging from 1.5" to 4.5" and hundreds of mayfly nymphs. With the numerous entrees maybe this explains why the BG are not hitting the feed.


Yesterday I awoke to a big surprise in this little puddle, a BEAVER! Can't imagine this furhead making a home here but my guest was still there when I got home from work last night.

#15651 06/14/06 01:36 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
We've had sufficient rains this spring to keep the water level full in this little puddle. The pond is totally clear of any FA and looks great. Back in April, the pond had a nice blue-green tint but after a heavy rainstorm the pond turned a tea-brown color and has remained that way. Still tossing pellets but it looks like the FH minnows are the only ones interested. The other day I noticed groups of fish 1/2" in length and suspect the FH's have spawned. Today there was a sediment cloud along one edge of the pond. BG are excavating nesting sites. Surface water temp today was 72 degrees. Still finding crayfish in the shallows during my night time recon missions.

#15652 06/14/06 03:02 PM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 764
N
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
N
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 764
Russ, a friend of mine traps beaver and last year trapped two beaver in a dry stream where there wasn't any water within a mile.


Norm Kopecky
#15653 06/14/06 03:13 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Norm, thankfully the beaver was an overnighter. He was gone by morning. Thats the second year in a row I've had beaver show up. So far, noone has taken up residency.

#15654 07/06/06 04:42 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
A couple of updates:

Pond appearance: The pond is currently clear of algae. Yesterday I cleaned up a few small patches along the shore. All the riprap I wanted to place along one shore has been laid down, about 110' total. Transplanted a few bur reed plants from the big pond.

Fish: The BG that are being caught average 5-6". They look to be in good shape. Over the past couple of weeks, I've counted 13 BG nesting sites but have not seen any young. The fatheads are spawning. A walk along the shore shows numerous schools of FH darting about.
Each morning I toss a handful of pellets into the pond and what I thought were FH minnows showing curiosity are actually golden shiners. With an intermittent stream feeding this pond, I suspect my BG/Bass pond may eventually house a mixed bag of species.
Clinging to the riprap and huddled along the shore are hundreds of snails about the size of a pencil eraser. As has been noted on the PB forum and in the magazine, they can be a link to some fish diseases. The recent PB article on pumpkinseed sunfish has me thinking about adding some of these to handle the snails. I welcome all comments on this approach.

Misc fodder: I just received my electric bill for the past two months which corresponds to the timeframe that I started running the compressor on a regular schedule. Running the compressor from 8 pm to 6 am, seven days a week, is costing about $4.00/month ($0.07/kWh)
The dam project I had planned for this week has been pushed back. In a normal summer, the pond would be down 6-8 inches by now but due to the numerous rain storms we've had lately this is not the case. I'm hoping by the end of July or beginning of August, the level will drop enough to allow me to do the work.

#15655 07/06/06 08:00 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ :

Thanks for the great report. It sounds like the BG pond is doing well. If those are GShiners they should help a little with BG #s control by eating a few eggs and fry. I to enjoyed Dave's PS to RES comparison. If you can control the tendency of both the BG and PS to overpopulate and stunt you should have an interesting combo of fish. Here is a pic of a BG x PS from Wisc. Fish ID.


















#15656 07/06/06 11:07 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thanks for the picture Eric. Overall, I'm very satisfied with this little puddle however, I'm very concerned about the snails. As noted in my last post on page one, I did some fishing at a local farmer's pond and all the BG caught were covered with black spots. If the snails are a link in the chain for this disease, I MUST do something before my fish are affected. Hopefully Bill C or Dr. Dave will see this post and offer some advice.

Eric, I'm going to search the PB forum but do you by chance have any papers/pictures that talk about/show the sexing of pumpkinseed sunfish. I'm also going to call the fella from the hatchery and see if he can offer any advice. He got a kick out of my initial request for all male BG so he should really like this one.

On a side note. I stopped by a local water testing lab today and inquired about testing a sample from the pond. I asked for 5 tests, D.O., pH, hardness, alkalinity, turbidity. He quoted a price of $185. I don't know if that price is good or not but I'm going to check my catalogs and perhaps buy a testing kit.

#15657 07/07/06 05:32 AM
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 15,978
Likes: 264
D
Moderator
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Lunker
D
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 15,978
Likes: 264
Russ, in Texas, we send water samples to Texas A & M. It is a lot cheaper than $185; maybe $20.00. Check with County Health Dept, County Agent, etc.


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.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
#15658 07/07/06 08:05 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 369
F
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
F
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 369
Russ

I also send my pond water samples to the County Agent and it costs me $28.

Frank


Book Owner and Magazine Subscriber 3 acre pond central GA
#15659 07/07/06 08:07 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ :

Here is a link to pics. I will check some more but so far 4 good sources have failed to describe the visual difference between male and female PS. I have not gone through the pics so I caution that these pics are sometimes labeled wrong (people tend to group LES in with PS).

http://images.google.com/images?as_q=Lep...&imgsafe=active
















#15660 07/07/06 01:20 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
DD1, Frank

A normal well water (drinking water) test performed by the local municipality water testing lab costs $30 but they only test for bacteria and fecal coliform. I don't know if the county health department does water testing related to ponds. I placed a call to a bud who works there but he was out of the office. Hopefully I'll talk to him this weekend and find out whether or not the county does the testing.

Eric,
Thanks for the link. What I'm hoping to find is similar material/pictures like Bill C, Bruce and Cecil provided in their PB bluegill articles.

#15661 07/07/06 01:54 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,892
D
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
D
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,892
Russ, I was thinking about contacting them for a referral to some Agency that does the testing.

#15662 07/07/06 08:23 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ sorry I missed your other question here :

New York
Cornell Nutrient Analysis Laboratories
804 Bradfield Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853
(607) 255-4540
www.css.cornell.edu/soiltest
Soil test cost: $15.
Includes: pH, lime requirement, organic matter, P, K, Ca, Mg, Al, Fe, Mn and Zn. (Fertilizer and amendment recommendations based on analysis results included for New York state growers only.) B included for additional $5. Soluble salts included for $2 (free for home gardeners).
To submit samples: Samples submitted in our own soil bags, which can be purchased through our office or through your regional extension offices. They are $15 and include the analysis fee.
Common regional problems: None to report.

No info yet on pic comparison of male/female PS. Only source to note a difference is Peterson Field Guide which says "... dusky chainlike bars on side of young and adult female.... "
















#15663 07/08/06 06:01 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Eric,

Thanks for the info on Cornell. I'll call them next week and quiz them about soil sampling and how it correlates to my pond water. Sure would be the cheaper route to take.

#15664 07/08/06 06:39 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
This is the only pic I have found saying male/female PS. Link below. If PS follow the usual lepomis variation pattern then the info on the pic is backwards as it has the top one the male. I bet the more colorful one on bottom is the male.

http://www.americanfishes.com/shop/index.php?shop=1&cat=9&cart=25031


















#15665 07/08/06 09:18 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ , for $185 you should be able to buy the testing kits to do your tests. There are some old posts on this forum about which kits are acceptable. I think Papond approved test kits from pet shops.

It looks like someone (Dr Willis or me?) is going to have to do an article describing male and female pumpkinseeds for PBoss mag. You have to watch out for pictures in books especially if they are not photos of fresh fish. Joe does a very good job of fish art, but he is usually working with one fish from one habitat. Lots of variation in color does occur as we all know. Sometimes things get skewed in artist's renderings. Bottom fish in Ewest's plate above is the male. The book (Fishes OF Central United States) with Joe Tomelleri's prints has the male, female labeled correct. I think the male PS also has a slightly larger portion of the black gill flap than the female. The red spot is also slightly more prominent in the male. Problem is, I do not have a good source for mature larger sized PS near me. The female PS that I have seen are slightly more colorful than that female depicted in the above plate.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15666 07/09/06 04:22 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Eric, thank you for the link and the pictures. Bill C concurs with your statement about being cautious of photos, especially the one shown.

Bill, I did a search for PaPond and found the link where he mentions aquarium test kits.

http://www.pondboss.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=17;t=000039#000006 .

I found an additional post where PaPond mentions that he uses CHEMetrics test kits. I'll have to do some more searching later this evening.

Bill/Eric, I'd like to hear your thoughts on whether or not you think the snails that inhabit my pond could lead to problems for the BG.

#15667 07/09/06 06:03 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Bill and Russ I agree. That is why I provided the Google list on PS first as it has a lot of pics for comparison. But they aren't always right. I don't really trust the drawings/paintings for as Bill says it is one perspective. They ,in addition to being local, are also subject to the eye of the artist . They are great to look at and good work just not the ideal fish ID source. I suggest that folks look at the Wisc. Fish ID site http://wiscfish.org as those are top notch wet pictures by someone who is very good at fish with good equipment. If you want to compare the fish in Wisc. with those from a diverse area then look at http://www.nativefish.org/Gallery/ and Google to compare. There are other sources but they do not attempt to show M/F nor describe the differences. Only source left is a text search . I do think I can find you some text on PS and snails. Bill will have a much better idea of your snails but posting a pic would help as there are many different ones and all do not host parasites and they do help a lot with pond clean up.
















#15668 07/09/06 08:51 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Eric, Snails should not be a big problem if you keep the fish eating birds out of your pond. To prevent the parasites of the snail-fish-bird pathway you need to interrupt one of the steps in the parasite's life cycle.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15669 07/09/06 09:05 AM
Joined: Sep 2002
Posts: 2,587
D
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
D
Joined: Sep 2002
Posts: 2,587
Russ -- Bill just gave the only advice that I could give. When you don't like the parasites (black spot, yellow grub), you have to try to break the cycle. My experience is that high incidence of these parasites seems to occur in "hot spots." Those spots are probably places with more of the fish-eating birds (herons, kingfishers), and seem to just be a natural phenomenon. In the past, we just lived with it. Now, we're trying to play around with the cycle, which is why we stocked pumpkinseeds. I initially didn't really expect much effect, given that we weren't controlling the birds. However, at least in the short term, I have observed far fewer yellow grubs in the yellow perch after we stocked the pumpkinseeds. However, the grubs are certainly not gone.

As for sexing the pumpkinseeds, I just haven't seen much information on that compared with bluegills. Could it have anything to do with the fact that we can produce 10 and 11 inch bluegills, but an 8-inch pumpkinseed is a whopper??


Subscribe to Pond Boss Magazine

From Bob Lusk: Dr. Dave Willis passed away January 13, 2014. He continues to be a key part of our Pond Boss family...and always will be.
#15670 07/09/06 09:36 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Bill/Dave,

I do have kingfishers and herons in the area but have not noticed them at this pond, yet. The ironic twist to this is the layout of the pond. Most of the pond has steep banks which would limit access to herons. The one shoreline, were the kids would do most of the fishing from, has the shallow area (for safety). This area happens to be where I laid the riprap which seems to be a magnet for the snails and crayfish. It would also offer a perfect setting for a wading bird like the heron \:\(

I'm going to grab a few snails and take them to work where we've got a couple of magnifer scopes. Maybe I'll get lucky and identify the species.

#15671 07/11/06 01:18 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Mailed the soil sample to Cornell today. Hope to see the results in 10 days or so. Cost $10 plus $3 shipping.

The county health department gave me a couple of numbers for local labs and suggested I call them for any pond water testing. I did happen to find an extensive water sample report that I did on my drinking water well when I first built the house. For the well water, the alkalinity was 206, hardness 44, turbidity .25 and pH 8.52. Any thoughts on the correlation between the well water sample and the pond water?? Maybe I'll just have the pond sampled for comparison.

#15672 07/22/06 09:00 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Soil nutrient analysis results from Cornell:

pH 8
Phosphorus (#/A) 1 very low
Potassium (#/A) 30 low
Magnesium (#/A) 750 high
Calcium (#/A) 28940 high
Aluminum (#/A) 73
Iron (#/A) 16
Manganese (#/A) 91
Zinc (#/A) 0.6
Nitrate (#/A) 10
Organic Matter (%) 1

This analysis was preformed on the soils that were excavated from the pond last year. To establish a pasture w/ legumes they recommend Nitrogen 20-40(#/A) , Phosphate 80(#/A) and Potash 85(#/A) for the first year. The second and third year applications for Nitrogen and Potash are the same but phosphate drops to 45 (#/A).

#15673 07/22/06 06:56 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ do you get a plankton bloom (green color)? Was the analysis done for a pond or crops? The High ,Low & Averages are different for them (at least in the ones we get done).
















#15674 07/24/06 06:23 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Eric,

The focus of the soil analysis was for crops, not ponds. On the day I picked up the soil test kit, the ag rep was not in the office. There was no place on the data sheet, that I saw, related to ponds. I questioned the gal, that gave me the test kit, about water testing and her recommendation was to call the NYSDEC. The next time I'm in town I'm going to swing by Cornell and hopefully the ag rep will be in the office.

On the question of plankton bloom I'm embarrassed to say, I don't know. Being a pond neophyte with the only exposure to blooms coming from words/pictures here on PB, I cannot look at my pond and say yes or no to a bloom. Since spring, I've been taking periodic secchi disk readings. Initial measurements were 39". Yesterday I measured 20". In early spring, the pond had a nice blue-green color that even my neighbors commented on. After a normal spring rain, that color changed overnight to what I have today. The water appears dark but when you pull a sample jar, it looks crystal clear. I recently installed a different compressor to experiment with, the pond is clear of FA, I see minnows/BG/LMB swimming about and the one resident muskrat appears happy. After pulling the water sample the other day and saw how clear it was, I started thinking about getting a microscope to see what is actually in the water. Bloom is as much color as content right??

#15675 07/24/06 08:01 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ I would think that if your visibility decreased from 39 to 20 and it was not due to turbidity from rain, change in aeration or other source then that indicates an increased plankton bloom. That would be a normal summer occurrence. Aeration while good for water quality can through circulation reduce plankton bloom and its visibility at the surface. The fact that you saw blue green color is another indication of a bloom. Visual color is an indication of plankton bloom usually noticed when the color increases or appears in spring/summer. Unless one has a sterilized pond there is plankton present and it is only a question of which types , density and color (if visible with the eye) even in winter.

On the forms we turn in for soil tests it has a blank to fill in for why you want the test i.e.. , corn , cotton ,trees, ponds mgt. etc. I am not a good enough chemist to translate your test results to a pond application. It is very good data to have as a baseline and PaPond, Bill , Dave, Bob or others may be able to extrapolate it to your pond. If they don't I can probably find some info. A good source would be your extension agent for ponds.
















#15676 07/24/06 09:27 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Eric,

On the subject of rain, aeration and turbidity let me state this. In my area, at least in my opinion, rainfall has not been a problem. The pond has dropped about 6 inches which I feel is normal for summer time. We did get a good drenching this past saturday.
My aeration experiment involves a compressor rated for double the output of the one I was using. I can run both diffusers simultaneously now and the water really "boils". I'm looking to reduce compressor runtime while maintaining proper mixing. Not knowing if the increase in aeration is causing any turbidity problems, I took a jar sample as noted above. Its been 24 hours and nothing has settled in the jar so far.

I hope to have some more information on the soil analysis tomorrow. I'll post anything new.

#15677 07/24/06 09:41 AM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 764
N
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
N
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 764
Trivia from NEW SCIENTIST, April 22-28, 2006 page 45.

Bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus) have been recruited by US army researchers to detect chemical attacks on drinking water. The fish respond to toxins in water by breathing faster and deeper, coughing more often and moving in a characteristic way. These movements generate electrical signals that are picked up by electrodes and sent to a computer. When the number of fish showing signs of stress passes a certain threshold, the computer sounds an alarm. The system is in use at a New York City reservoir.


Norm Kopecky
#15678 07/24/06 11:24 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Norm here is the prior CIA Bluegill thread. Looks like PB beat NS by a year. \:D

http://www.pondboss.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=20;t=002216;p=1
















#15679 07/24/06 06:52 PM
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 764
N
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
N
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 764
Sorry I missed the thread. The entire article was about using wasps and bees to smell different things. Apparently the ability to smell (air borne) by insects exceeds all other animals by far.


Norm Kopecky
#15680 07/28/06 05:19 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
I talked to the soil analysis rep from Cornell yesterday and inquired about pond water testing. In addition to the Health Dept and the NYSDEC she suggested I call one of the local testing labs. She stated her office did not offer pond water analysis.

Upon inspection of the water sample, I noticed that a very, very light film of sediment has settled on the bottom of the jar. Its light enough to lead me to believe that the decrease in the secchi disk readings is not the result of aggressive mixing with the new compressor however the only true indication would be to have a water anaylsis done.

#15681 07/28/06 08:10 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ :

FWIW I think what has decreased your visibility is increased plankton growth/bloom. That would be normal in a pond in summer especially where you have had no major rain events and water level is dropping. Aeration could be adding some small amount of visibility reduction. If you do the jar test and use water from the top 3 feet of water in the pond it probably will have some amount of plankton in it. If you take it out of the sunlight for a day or two the plankton will dye and settle to the jar bottom. It will appear as a fine film in the bottom. I hope this helps.
















#15682 09/02/06 02:26 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
More ramblings:

This morning I had an opportunity to grab a pole and try my luck. About an hour later, I had landed (and released) 4 nice BG. I hooked one LMB but he never saw land. Three of the BG measured just shy of 7" while the fourth reached the 6.5" mark. Last fall the BG we stocked were 3-4". In July we caught a couple of BG about 5-6" and now they are approaching 7". Are these numbers in line with what I should expect from this little puddle?

FH minnows are still present but the snail population has dwindled from what it was a month ago. Walking the shoreline at night, I still find a few crayfish out for a stroll. On a few occasions, I've noticed coon and heron tracks.

A small stone dam project was been completed and the resulting increase in water level gives the puddle a nice full look.

This week I'm going to collect some water samples for analysis.

#15683 09/02/06 03:03 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ - I think the growth of your BG is in line with good growth rates for northern BG. I think you are feeding TSC fish food. If you were feeding a pellet with a little higher protein your BG could be a litter larger. Fish will put on a little more growth in Sept and early Oct. Expect to see some 8"-8.5" BG next year.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15684 09/02/06 05:25 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Bill,

The BG are not taking the pellets. At one point, golden shiners were taking them but now that the LMB are 10", I think the bass took care of GS. I just read your reply to Cecil's post on feeding LMB, can I use the same technique with BG. I would like to get the BG on pellets. 8-8.5" BG by next year would be great.

#15685 09/02/06 07:46 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ, The BG not eating pellets explaines your somewhat slower growth rates.

You can use the same pellet training method for BG. In fact BG will be able to be trained faster to eat pellets than LMB. I can usually get BG and YP to eating soft pellets in 3-4 days. One important point that significantly affects training is having the fish confined to a cage or similar confinement. Trying to train feed roaming fish in a pond with other fish is difficult with this method. Catch the fish you want to feed train, confine them, then train them.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15686 09/14/06 10:16 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Yesterday I received the water sample lab results for the pond. The sample was taken at 8:00 a.m. on 9-7-06, air temp 57 degrees, surface water temp 67 degrees, pH 8, cloudy skies and a secchi disc reading of > 5'.

Interesting note about the secchi disc reading. Last month the reading was around 22". A week prior to the sample, our area received a couple of rainstorms. In another thread,

http://www.pondboss.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=17;t=000084;p=1#000010

I talked about taking a water sample after a rainstorm figuring the turbidity would be affected. I was very surprised by the reading.

Test results are :

Alkalinity 114 mg/l
Calcium Hardness 140 mg/l
D.O. 9.0 mg/l
Turbidity 1.6 NTU (nephelometric turbidity units.)

Next summer I will take another sample for comparison. Costs for all 4 tests, $70. I took the sample and delivered it to the lab. Onsite sampling by the lab would of added $30 to the cost.

#15687 09/14/06 10:20 AM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 20,043
Likes: 1
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Offline
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 20,043
Likes: 1
Hey Russ,

That's a pretty good PH for the northeast! As you probably know some places have dangerously low PH's!


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






#15688 09/14/06 10:19 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Cecil,

The pH is in line with what the soil sample results showed.


Some more stuff to add to the previous post. With a pH=8 and the readings for alkalinity and hardness I guess the pond doesn't need any lime. (Even the soil sample recommendations stated no lime needed.)

The DO reading leads me to believe the diffusers are doing the job. In a month or so, they will go silent for the winter.

Turbidity is the one parameter I'd like to get more control over, if possible. I say this as it effects algae growth. It seems after every rainstorm, the turbidity of the pond changes. A similar event occured this past spring. The pond had a nice blue-green tint to the water but after a spring rain, the water turned a dark color yet was very clear. I think the secchi disc reading was around 39". With the water this clear, algae growth benefits. Today in the shallow areas of the pond I noticed large masses growing. It has the appearance of green cotton candy. Hopefully the pending drop in water temps will help control the growth leading into winter.

On the brighter side of things, the small stone dam is finished. The additional water it holds back gives the pond a nice full look. A side benefit is the trickling sound you get as water rolls off into the rip rap lined outlet. Nice place to set the lounge chair.

The rip rap shoreline is a crayfish magnet. Last night I counted 18, 1-2", mud bugs hunkered down in between the crevices in the rocks.

The muskrat problem I had during the summer has been addressed. I'm sure in time others will move in.

I've managed to get a few of the BGs and a good number of FH minnows to take pellets. I'll continue to feed till surface water temps hit about 50 degrees which I suspect will be in October. Some 8" BG by next summer would be nice.

Now if that isn't enough, the BG pond has tossed me a curve. The other day, I noticed a number of 1" BG and 2.5" bass swimming around. No doubt the BG I stocked contained some females but the bass have me stumped. There are six 10" bass in the pond that I know of but I don't think they are of spawning size/age. Can someone correct me on this. Because an intermittent stream feeds this pond, its difficult to regulate what critters flow in and out. I found a 5" golden shiner flopping around in the rip rap lined outlet the other day. Not sure if he was inbound or on a departing flight.

Based on the presence of baby BG and bass what actions, if any, should I take now to keep the goal of a pond filled with big BG on target?

Any and all advice is appreciated. Thanks for reading.

Russ

#15689 09/20/06 11:19 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
A note to inform the forum that this outstanding thread was moved from Questions and Observations to Types of Fish to Choose as requested by Russ.
















#15690 09/22/06 12:36 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thank you Eric for moving the post!

More pond ponderings and a question about structure. After the initial construction of this puddle, one of the first structure items to be added were artificial christmas trees to serve as bait fish attractors/refuge areas. It was an experiment. Having been submerged for almost one full year, the trees look like one big algae mass. (For those that remember the Addams family, the trees look like Cousin It). I'm not very optimistic they offer any benefit to the pond but this comes from surface observation only. I may attempt to pluck them out using a boom pole and grapple.

With the pond goal of big BG, I need to address the young BG and bass that have taken up residency. If I remove the christmas trees, the only structure left in the pond would be three 20' long 8-10" diameter trees, submerged horizontally in 3-4' of water and a very small brush pile. I'd like to hear opinions on what type of structure to add that would serve to (1) attract the baby BG/LMB, (2) offer the existing 10" LMB a point from which to launch an attack and (3) not turn into an ineffective algae mass.

The earliest post I found touching on PVC structures dates back to 2003 where Bob Lusk mentions them.
http://www.pondboss.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=4;t=000013

I also recall Chip Rowland's post about sinking some PVC structures earlier this spring.
http://www.pondboss.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=4;t=000161

Bob or Chip, if you read this, can you offer any experience on the track record of these structures as far as algae growth over time?

#15691 10/14/06 06:06 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
With Fall in full swing here in the northeast, the BG puddle is showing the signs of change. Yesterday's surface water temps were 55 degrees. A handfull of pellets produced zero hits from the BG(at least during the time period I stood by). The annual accumulation of fall foliage has stained the water color to charcoal black yet a secchi disk reading produced 36" visibility.
Aerator has been shutdown.

A neighbor stopped by yesterday and confessed to hauling in some slab crappie from a river in the next town over. My BG are not yet dinner plate ready so we'll shift into kickback mode here and go raid someone else's frig.

#15692 10/14/06 08:00 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ try this -- in a day or two assuming your weather holds ( BG given time to adjust to the temp. change) then throw in a few pellets and see if there is a difference from yesterday's feeding level. Let us know what your results are.
















#15693 10/14/06 08:34 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ - Did you get any of the big snow fall that fell in and around Buffalo?.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
#15694 10/15/06 04:25 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Eric,

Daytime temps are predicted to remain in the upper 50's for the next few days so I will try some pellets and report back. One question I've often thought about, concerning feeding, is what time of day is best, especially now with surface temps dropping.

Bill,

Our area did not receive any of the snowfall that hit Buffalo. Traveling the NYS Thruway, I'm about 7 hours (my travel time) southeast of Buffalo. I see in Bob's log book, he was to fly into upstate this past Friday. I'm wondering if he flew over/into Buffalo?

#15695 10/24/06 03:55 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Update for Ewest,

Since my last post, I've been tossing a small handful of pellets into the pond on a daily basis. This usually has taken place in the late morning...10:00-10:30. With the sun sinking on the horizon, the majority of the pond does not see sunlight till late a.m.. No BG action (feeding) has been observed. Todays surface water temperature was 50 degrees.

My neighbors were down this past weekend and we tried to entice the BG with worms.....nothing. I suspect they found the Nyquil and have powered down for a winter snooze.

#15696 10/24/06 05:26 PM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,261
D
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
D
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,261
Russ, just for comparison's sake, i was watching surface of my pond this a.m. and saw more GSF feeding action between about 7 and 7:15 than i saw just about all summer. we've been in a mild air temp range of 50 at night and 75 in the day for the last couple weeks......i actually think the GSF have finally found the Gams as suitable forage.....i've tried to be patient like Eric......i have not fished it all summer, but almost broke down with some ultralight tackle this morning........am forcing myself to hold off.


GSF are people too!

#15697 10/25/06 03:42 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Dave,

During the summer months, I would feed around that same timeframe, 7-7:30 a.m.. At this time, only a very small portion of the pond was in the shade. The BG were active then and would take the pellets.

With the water now charcoal black, yet visibility is >2', I thought perhaps waiting till the sun hit the pond (late a.m.) may affect feeding but this does not appear to be the case. I've suspended feeding till next year.

As you have read, Eric's patience has put him on track to achieving a very successful fishing hole. You are on the next train which will be arriving soon. Good luck Dave!

#15698 11/03/06 06:20 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Back on 9/15/06 I made a post asking for advice on what actions should be taken to address the YOY BG and bass that are now part of this pond.
Some management options were discussed in this thread:

http://www.pondboss.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=7;t=000393

The plan now is to transfer some small bass from my other pond to this one. The target will be 25 bass total in the 8-12" range. I'll build to this number gradually as opposed to stocking all at once.

#15699 11/03/06 08:37 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ :

I posted this before but I should have mentioned it in your link on controlling small BG. Several studies have stated and one measured what is the largest source of prey on yoy BG from the egg stage to 2-3 inches. It was far and away larger BG from 4in. up. Yep real cannibals those BG.
















#15700 11/03/06 12:39 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Is that why I seined my bluegill pond the other day and got 1100 fish instead of 2400?


Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.
#15701 11/03/06 04:51 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
What happened to those pics Bruce ? How do you know how many were there ? I think you probably ate about 1000 of the missing ! ;\) :p
















#15702 11/03/06 05:00 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
My danged computer still belongs to the "Geek Squad". They refuse to return it. Three weeks now. \:\(

When it's back I can download my bluegill pictures so Cecil can start itching to come visit me!!!!! ;\)

I sold most of them to be stocked into two brand new ponds. I think these fish will thrive. There is tons of forage and there will be feeders as well. I kept the best ones in a tank and am holding them over until spring for stocking in a growout pond. So my precious age-1 CSBG are now spread throughout four ponds, including 15 or so that went into the horizontal aeration pond to live in luxury. The best age-0's are a little better than 5 inches and the best age-1's are 8 inches, with one 9 inch freak that's sitting in a tank in my Morton building right now. He's still kinda mad though and won't eat.


Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.
#15703 11/03/06 05:01 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
Moderator
Lunker
Online Confused
Moderator
Lunker
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 13,906
Likes: 263
1100 (females) out of 2400 total? That's about his expected culling ratio.


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i.pinimg.com]
#15704 11/06/06 11:58 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
This pond never ceases to amaze and confuse me. Last week the water was charcoal black with a visibility of around 26" inches. Today its clear enough to count the leaves on the plants 7 feet below the surface.

Surface temps 48 degres.


Update 11-09-06: 2 inches of rain fell on our area last night. This morning the pond has the black color to it again and the visibility has dropped to 4'.

#15705 11/06/06 12:22 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ often that is part of the pond turnover (de-stratification)effect. Top layer of cold water which develops or is deposited on the surface kills off blooming plankton ( which does not have to be green) and they both sink/drift down over a couple days. Result clear cold water.
















#15706 11/06/06 01:58 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Eric,

Thats interesting. I would of thought by aerating since spring, the pond would not have been stratified. Aerators have been shutdown for three weeks now.

#15707 11/06/06 04:51 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ the pond probably was not stratified but was at a near common temp say 55 degrees 3 weeks ago. Since then cold surface water formed killed the plankton and all of it being heaver than 55 degree water sunk. Leaving you with clear cold (guessing low 40 degree) surface water.
















#15708 11/09/06 09:59 PM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 20,043
Likes: 1
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Offline
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 20,043
Likes: 1
Bruce,

Do you have access to PM's? I sent you one regarding coming down this spring to pick up some bluegills. Bill Cody said he's ride down with me. Now that I realize it's not 22 hours one way it sounds more palatable! Just did a road trip of 30 hours round trip so I think I can handle 22 hours round trip!

Just need to know when is the best time for you in the spring. I would prefer when water temps are optimum for handling to prevent fungus but it's up to you. I'm flexible and I believe Bill is too.


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






#15709 11/09/06 10:16 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Just sent you a PM. I'm fired up about the possibility!

The best time to get fish would be in April or May I would think.


Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.
#15710 04/04/07 07:25 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Surface water temp, 40 degrees.
Secchi disk reading is about 6'.
The stone dam has survived the winter ice.
FA starting to show up.
Tossed a few pellets, no activity.
Ducks, geese and rats are back. Culled three rats so far, expect more.

#15711 06/17/07 06:04 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Update 6-17-07:

Pond is looking good, very little FA.
Secchi disk readings are dropping. A month ago I was reading 3.5-4', yesterday the readings were down to 2.5 feet. Water is a dark tea brown.

Noticed one pair of BG nesting. Last week there was a mass of young swimming near shore but not sure if they were FH minnows or BG. BG do not appear interested in pellets but the shiners sure do like them. Caught three BG on grubs the other day. All looked healthy, measuring 7.5".

Added another half dozen bass (6-7") from the big pond. I'm seeing some BG from last years spawn, about 2" in size. Sitting by the pond in the later afternoon, you see numerous ripples in the water near shore. Bass chowing down. My dad caught two bass the other day. Both 11" and looking quite healthy. Walking the shore at night with a flashlight, I'm still seeing crayfish.

With summer approaching, I'm going to add another 2-3" to the dam height once the water level drops a bit. Still have outflow in the pond but its slowing down.

The burreed is growing, expanding its range and healthy looking. The ducks and geese have left and so far, no sign of anymore rats.

#15712 06/17/07 08:50 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Might I add a well deserved "Way to go Russ"!! Very well done and reported. Much thanks for the efforts and reports. \:\) \:D

I assume you are checking on alkalinity - the tea colored part sounds acidic if it were down here. IIRC yours is good so probably not a concern. Has the pond been green (bloom) this year. The brown could be zooplankton.
















#15713 06/17/07 11:06 AM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 20,043
Likes: 1
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Offline
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 20,043
Likes: 1
Russ,

Sounds good! Were the bass smallmouth or largemouth?


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






#15714 06/17/07 11:22 AM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,261
D
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
D
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,261
hi russ,
sounds like yer BG are getting to good sizes there.

do you wonder why they dont want pellets?

post a pic.


GSF are people too!

#15715 06/17/07 07:44 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Eric,
I have not checked the alkalinity since the water analysis I had done last fall, which showed a reading of 114 mg/l. The pond was drained and enlarged in the summer of '05. In the spring of '06 the water had a nice blue/green tint. Since then the water has either been tea brown, (which usually lasts all summer) or "black" (in the fall). My hope was to replicate that blue/green appearance this spring so that I could have another water analysis done for reference but no luck.

Cecil,
I'm taking LMB from my other pond and putting them in the BG pond.

Dave,
I'm not sure why they are not interested in the pellets. The day I caught the BG, I had fished with worms for about 20 minutes with no bites. After switching to grubs, I pulled one out on the first cast. Finicky diners I guess.

#15716 06/17/07 07:59 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
In my opinion, if you give a bluegill virtually unlimited forage, that most will ignore pellets. I have over 500 BG in my big pond, and they have tons of invertebrates, and I'll bet fewer than 50 of them regularly eat pellets. And this from fish that have seen pellets their whole lives.

In contrast, HSB with unlimited forage will have a preference for artificial feed maybe 5:1. I'll rarely find any HSB that hasn't been chowing on the Aquamax.

Cecil and Bill and others could comment with more experience, but it seems like my yellow perch prefer natural (live) prey items over pellets when both are highly available.


Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.
#15717 06/17/07 08:41 PM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 20,043
Likes: 1
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Offline
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 20,043
Likes: 1
Well actually as far as the perch, from my experience it can go both ways. Case in point: In the spring of 06' I moved 70 large female perch to a 1/10th acre pond with the intention of intensely feeding them pellets for faster growth, as I was not seeing evidence that they were feeding on pellets in the main pond they came from. And they probably weren't, as the bass in the original pond are intimidating at feeding time, and there were lots of bass fry and fingerlings to chow down on along with numerous snails.

Well it turned out they fed on pellets for a while after I moved them to this 1/10 acre pond, but seemed to lose interest by early summer. There were a few small bluegills that had swam up the overflow pipe into this pond, and of course snails and invertebrates -- so apparently they perfered them over the pellets. Temps were optimum and never got obove 75 F., as this pond was fed with overflow from the trout pond. At one point I thought maybe I had lost them all, but seeing only one carcass seemed to contradict that.

Anyway, that fall I drained the pond and they were all there except for one or two. Looked healthy and well fed. Who would have thought there was enough natural feed in a 1/10th acre pond for 70 large perch.

Well this spring I moved about 50 perch of both sexes (mostly big females up to 15 inches) into another 1/10th acre pond, and thinking I had learned from the last experience planted about 16 lbs. of fatheads too keep them health and feeding. (This was a holding pond as they were destined for Bass Pro Shops once VHS testing came back negative). Guess what? They seemed more interested in the pellets this time! Go figure! Only thing different this time was there were some pellet feeding largemouths in the pond (initially I was going to produce my own bass) and maybe they relearned to feed on the pellets from the bass and were not intimidated?


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






#15718 06/18/07 06:18 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Fry swimming in UPark NY on June 10 were very probably fatheads - too early for BG fry to be swimming in NY. I haven't got the fish going off and on feed completely figured out yet. There is consistancy and an explanation to it but I am not real sure what it is yet. I am sure the amount of natural food present plays a big role in this topic.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Short update:

Did a little fishing this past weekend and the pond has reached one milestone. A couple of BG that were caught passed the 8" mark (8 1/4"). Todate I still have only a handfull of BG taking pellets.
In addition to the BG, we landed 6 bass with all 6 approaching the 13" mark and in good health. Question for the experts. With fall in sight, should I start removing 13" bass or can I leave them till next year?

Russ #96280 09/06/07 04:23 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Congratulations on the great BG growth rates. You should be pretty fired up, eh? \:\)

Question for you. Why would you remove the 13" bass? Aren't these your best and brightest? I think if you want big BG, these quickest growing early LMB are the fish that are doing the best job at eating small BG's. That should be ideal.

Unless I'm just missing something.


Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ what is the size structure for your BG and LMB populations ? Adjust what you take out upon those numbers and your goal. For example if you want large BG then leave in the LMB needed to crop down the BG in the 2 to 4in size (6 to 12in LMB). If you want large LMB then leave in the fastest growing LMB and remove the smaller LMB (6 to 9in).
















ewest #96303 09/06/07 06:45 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Bruce,

Yes, I am excited. An 8+" BG was one of my goals for this year. On the issue of culling 13+" LMB, I made a post back on 11/3/06 (in this same thread) that takes up this subject. Why cull them. Simple. I don't want them to chow down on my bigger BG.

Eric,

The initial goal was big BG in this little puddle. The 13" bass are residents that I believe transfered in on the intermittent stream that supplies this pond. Earlier this year, with advice from PB members, I started adding 6" lmb from my other pond. The 6" lmb were added to help cull the young BG (1-2").

Thanks for the replies!

Russ #96312 09/06/07 07:58 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ,
Consider this. Assuming your goal is larger BG, and your pond is relatively small (less than 1/2ac), I would not remove LMB until they are above 14" or maybe even larger than 15". You do want a fair amount of predation on BG 4" and maybe a few 5" just to keep the BG numbers in check. This would be especially true since very few or your BG are eating pellets. Non-pellet eaters are taxing the food reserves of the small pond and food can become limiting for excessive numbers of 4"-6" BG and their growth could be slowed. One way to combat this problem in a small pond like yours is to cage some of those 4"-6" BG in spring and train them to eat pellets and relese them in early fall. Refer back to my 3 articles on Caged Fish in PBoss Mag - Mar to Aug 2007. This will allow for more large BG biomass in a food limited pond.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 09/06/07 08:00 PM.

aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Bill,

More food for thought.

Thank you sir.

Russ #96353 09/06/07 08:46 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ, If you raise a few BG (15-25) in a cage each year I am sure you will see after a few years a significant increase in pellet eating BG and a good number of trophy class BG in your small pond.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Bill,

I know this question has been discussed in the past but I still wonder. Because this pond is supplied by an intermittent stream, I question how many fish may have escaped during periods of high water. Early on I tried a hardware cloth fish gate (1/4" mesh was all I had available) at the outlet but quickly realized its drawbacks. You warned me (10/26/05 post) about small mesh gates and how fast they would plug up, especially in the fall.

Perhaps feeding from another spot may yield better results as far as attracting fish.



Last edited by Russ; 07/17/08 04:08 PM.
Russ #125437 07/17/08 04:35 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Not sure how to take this most recent development so I'm going to ask for advice. Some of the old timers on the board will recall my original plan for a small pond with big male BG only. Then the bass showed up and on their shirttail came the BG fry. Overall, I'm satisfied with the results, even having reproducing bass and BG but todays unwelcomed addition needs to be addressed.....I think.

In preparation of mucking out the stream that feeds this pond (to create a small FHM forage pond), I started pumping water out the other day. A few more hours of pumping will cause the stream bed to go dry but the pond will still be about 80% full. As I was raking out some algae and weeds around the perimeter of the pond, I noticed a couple of small fish in amongst the weeds. Upon closer inspection, they turned out to be 1-1.25" bullhead!

With the original plan some what skewed already, it certainly did not include bullhead. (Side note: I have never caught a bullhead in this pond so perhaps the bass are keeping them in check.) Given those facts, I'd like to hear comments on how you guys would proceed with this.

Would you (1) continue to pump the pond dry, glean out the big BG and sex them for restocking in hopes of getting the original plan back on track, (2) leave as is hoping the bullhead will not become a problem, or (3) options from the board.

Thanks in advance for all replies.

Here is a link to a bird's eye view of the pond.

http://www.zillow.com/aerial/DualMapPage.htm?zpid=66894940

Russ





Last edited by Russ; 07/17/08 04:38 PM.
Russ #125462 07/17/08 08:14 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ what to do depends on where you want to go. Give some thought to that and post what you want and we can go from there.
















Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ, A pond with a strong bass population and some effort directed to removing each year some adult bullheads one can tolerate some bullheads and not have lots of problems. Bullhead will learn to eat pellets and grow well on them. Bullheads feed best just before dark. I like eating bullheads raised on pellets in a pond. The bullheads that were eating pellets in my small pond were practically eating pellets out of my hand which made catching them relatively easy. If bullheads are your only problem then you might want to live with them for a few years and see how the fish community develops. But if you have some other negative issues with the fishery then now would be a good time to renovate. Your pond is not real large so renovating in a couple years will not be a major project compared to a pond of 2-6 acres. You could use the next few years to work the fishery and gather more knowledge then renovate if you want to move the fishery in another direction.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 07/17/08 08:36 PM.

aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,854
Likes: 1
FWIW, surprisingly, I haven't encountered too many problems with bullheads in ponds with established LMB populations. They are just SOOOOOO susceptible to predation when they are young. If the water is relatively clear, and the vegetation is relatively under control the LMB will hammer them into submission. The very few that survive will grow huge and actually taste great. I'd tend to resist the urge to renovate, in particular if you think that it may happen again.


Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thank you for the replies. While working the pond this morning, I had time to give this more thought and will take a wait and see approach.

Bill, in reference to this comment "....one can tolerate some bullheads and not have lots of problems." do you mean overpopulation? Other than the bullheads, I have no problems with the pond.

Bruce,
Prior to pumping, secchi disk readings were 36". With the pond level down almost 4' now, I've been cleaning out some weeds that I can reach from shore. I do not know what vegetation/density exists below the current waterline. Your last sentence really hammers home the reality of the situation. Given the fact I have no control over the stream that supplies this pond, if I drain it dry now, there is no guarantee I won't be faced with the same problem down the road. Like Bill mentioned, if things get really out of hand, the pond's size is such that to renovate would not be a big deal.

Russ

Russ #125579 07/18/08 01:57 PM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 13,589
Likes: 251
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Online Content
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 13,589
Likes: 251
I feel that as long as you have your pond connected to "wild" water, you are going to have Mr. Bullhead gracing your waters.

I used to feel that LMB would keep bullheads in check, but I'm slowly coming away from that theory. Bruce does qualify his statement considering water clarity and the presence of weeds, but I wonder if the LMB don't prefer other fish to eat over the bullheads. So if you've got a good forage base, the pressure on the bullheads may not be enough.

I agree with taking a wait-&-see approach for now.

There is also a way to target bullheads when fishing (I read it somewhere). Take a piece of hot dog on a hook and cast the hotdog out and bring it back in a straight line slowly along the bottom of the pond; then repeat with a second cast so the path of the second cast creates and "X" shape with the path of the first cast. Obviosly, you have to cast from two different spots.

Then fish at the center of the "X" with hotdogs and see what comes up.


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."

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thank you Sunil. Given the size of the bullheads I saw yesterday, they would be no match for the 8"-14" bass that currently roam the pond. I will give your fishing technique a try and report back at a later date.

Russ

Russ #149749 02/18/09 05:47 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
In anticipation of raising some fish in cages this spring I would like to refer back to Bill Cody's post on 9/6/07 for this question. Following his thoughts on catching some existing 4-6" BG and taking them from "free range" to a caged environment what precautions, if any, should I take to help reduce fish stress and avoid/limit any mortality ?

Thanks


Russ

Russ #149761 02/18/09 06:42 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Don't over crowd fish in holding or hauling container.
Transport fish when air and water temps are cool 52-65F.
Never handle fish with dry hands.
Minimally handle each fish as much as possible.
Do not keep any fish that touches the ground.
Don't keep any fish that is not lip hooked or only those if minimally or lightly hooked inside mouth.
Don't keep fish too long (over 2 hrs) in containers prior to hauling. Make sure you or someone performs regular water changes on fish in containers depending on how many fish are in each holding container. A live box is helpful for holding higher numbers of fish or holding fish for longer periods if catching is really slow.
Rarely do I use any chemical additives on fish that I haul short distances - 20-30 min.
If hauling longer than 20-30 min it is a good idea to have very good aeration. Don't crowd fish in hauling container even with aeration. Stress can cause latent problems with fish adjusting to cages.
Add worm pieces 1/4"-1/2" the next day after fish have been caged. You want vitality - stamina (primarily slime coat) to stay high right away after being placed in a cage and while adjusting to cage life or containment.
In my opinion it is better to make two or several trips to gather fish compared to one trip where fish are crowded in hauling.



Last edited by Bill Cody; 02/18/09 06:45 PM.

aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,261
D
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
D
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,261
glad to see this thread revived russ (with the new title too \:\) )

this is one of the threads that drew me in to pondboss as a lurker way back when.

great info from mr. cody right there..

JHAP bought a couple small inexpensive battery operated aerators at wally world when he transferred fish from my place. they seemed to work really well. basically a small box compressor w/ on/off switch, and poly tube going to small airstone. someone more clever than me could probably find a link to it on the web. i think he said they were around 20 bucks a piece.


GSF are people too!

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thanks Dave. Its interesting to see what the original plan was and where we're at today. I emphasize "we're" because without PB and its members, I'd be lost. Projects for this year include another attempt to excavate the streambed in hopes of establishing a fathead grow out area. Coupled with that, the raising of fish in cages has me excited but until ice out and maple season is over, its just a waiting game for now. With any luck, this year I just might see a 9" BG.
I will continue to update this thread with "our" progress.

Russ

Russ #166431 06/02/09 03:13 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Following spring and ice out, algae has been a constant companion of this little puddle. This year has been especially hard. Until a spring rain last week the only openings in the algae mat were the result of the aerators. After the rain, algae coverage has dropped from 90% to 20%. In an attempt to limit regrowth, I added some pond dye last week. Prior to adding the dye, secchi disk measurements were 4 feet. Today, the readings are down to 2 feet. The morning feeding still have the BG hitting the pellets hard.

Russ


Last edited by Russ; 06/02/09 03:14 PM.
Russ #167474 06/08/09 07:14 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
This past saturday I took the time to take a census survey of the critters that are living rent free in this puddle. Of the 14 fish landed we had 11 BG 5-6", one 9" LMB and one 9" bullhead. The ultimate prize came on the second to last cast....a 9" BG !

MANY, MANY thanks to all that helped achieve this goal.

Russ

Russ #173519 07/13/09 04:19 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
A mid summer update.
Still doing battle with the algae. A couple of weeks ago, I culled 20 BG in the 3-4 inch range. This past weekends fishing yielded bluegill in the 5-6 range with a nice 8.5 inch male. Also pulled in a couple of 9-10" LMBs.
Launched two fish cages the first week of June. 30 BG and YP fingerlings/cage. The morning feeding consists of a combination of worm bits and pellets, 3mm Silvercup. The BG take both, the YP have not warmed up to the pellets yet. Lost one 4" BG so far.

Russ


Last edited by Russ; 07/13/09 04:19 PM.
Russ #173522 07/13/09 05:06 PM
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
A
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
A
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
Russ, sounds like your pond fish are doing well, how about some photo's of your pond and the fish.



Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
AP,

For an aerial view of my ponds go to my July 17, 2008 post on this thread. Click on the link. It will bring up a birds eye view of the BG pond. Scroll left across the street to see the big pond. This photo was taken in the spring because I see the wood bins by the barn for maple syrup season. I'll work on getting the fish posted.














Russ

Last edited by ewest; 07/15/09 07:32 AM.
Russ #173661 07/14/09 07:56 AM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Thanks for the updates Russ. Any new pics. ? I wish everyone would update their pond threads as things progress. It helps us all learn.
















Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Thanks Russ for the pic. Great job on the cages. Nice fish !
















Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
A
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
A
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
Nice job on the cages Russ, lots of fun raising fish and being able to watch their progress.



Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thank you Eric for posting the pictures!

Since my 7/13 post, I've lost another 4.5" BG and one 4" YP. No visible signs of injury on either fish. Of those that remain, the a.m. dinner bell finds them waiting and eager.....BG are at surface but the YP remain deep. The first week of August will mark two months in the cages. I hope to net a few for observation.

Turning to the pond itself. After culling the small BG from a couple of weeks ago, pellet feeding has slowed. Haven't done any fishing since then but I can't believe I decimated the existing pellet feeding population that much.

Russ

Last edited by Russ; 07/23/09 04:16 PM.
Russ #175538 07/23/09 05:01 PM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,261
D
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
D
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,261
russ, i noticed i have the "same old crowd" when i feed. its a school of maybe 100-200 fish or so. it consists of the original BG stockers, the older GSF that learned early on from the pellet fed stockers, and not so many young fish....particularly those BG born in the pond (of the young fish they are mostly aggressive greenies). i've figured if i removed most of those in the feeding school, that would be that.


GSF are people too!

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Dave -

Feeding, both cage and free rangers, is done at one end of the pond. Fishing takes place elsewhere. I hope in time welfare recruitment increases. If not, I may be sampling Purina GFC for breakfast so it doesn't go to waste. Maybe my chickens will eat it. With all the rain we've had of late, they are begining to wonder if I'm raising them as fin or fowl.

- Russ

Russ #175562 07/23/09 09:42 PM
Joined: May 2009
Posts: 743
W
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
W
Joined: May 2009
Posts: 743
Hey Russ. I saw this thread a while back, but missed the part in which you said you were using dye to control the algae. Dye is your worst enemy if you're trying to grow big fish, bluegill or anything else, because it kills plankton which are the foundation of the entire food chain in any pond. A far better way to control the algae is to establish a program of regular fertilization. It sounds like you have too much FA right now to start fertilizing this year, but if you start next April before it gets going good, as soon as you get a good plankton bloom (which should happen by the second or third application, usually the second) going, the plankton cuts out the sunlight penetrating through the water and the FA dies and doesn't come back. A good plankton bloom does the same thing the dye does, only far more effectively, and with the tremendous difference that it will greatly increase the growth rate of your fish rather than slicing it.

If you're feeding regularly, you could have bluegill that average 7" or better, rather than the 4-5" it sounds like they average now, if you fertilize.

Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Every pond does not need to be fertilized as many outside the south have more than enough natural fertility to produce a good plankton bloom without help. The danger with fertilizing a naturally productive pond is you achieve to dense a bloom that uses up all the DO at night and causes a fish kill. There are many naturally fertile northern ponds where fertilization will not reduce FA because it grows in colder water before the fertilizer can work. In those ponds FA will grow before the plankton bloom which will then occur when its time and other methods of FA control have to be used , if the pond owner wishes to do so.
















Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 10,458
Likes: 2
C
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame
Lunker
C
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 10,458
Likes: 2
Northern ponds are very tricky to fertilize and I think you run a serious risk as Eric said. Anything much north of the Mason-Dixon line...

Joined: May 2009
Posts: 743
W
Lunker
Offline
Lunker
W
Joined: May 2009
Posts: 743
I have to say I disagree. The South, at least where I live in TN, gets cold weather too, though obviously nothing like the North; many of the ponds I've fertilized in the past had FA growing on the bottom to some extent all through the winter, and certainly had it growing when I first fertilized in the spring. More than a couple times, including once just over two months ago, I've fertilized a pond for the first time long after spring was fading into summer and the FA was already growing in large beds, covering in a few instances at least 20% of the lake. In every instance the FA was gone within a week. Sometimes it will grow more, briefly, with the application of the fertilizer, but as soon as the bloom happens the sunlight can no longer penetrate the water and the FA is going to die, pure and simple. That's just a basic scientific principle that is the same anywhere there's water and plankton and FA.

I would guess that Russ's pond is not extremely fertile naturally, because if it were fertile enough to get a good plankton bloom, he wouldn't have FA. FA is FA, and it requires sunlight to grow. And, some of the most naturally fertile ponds anywhere are in the South. I work with several phosphate pits, and I doubt that there are many ponds anywhere more naturally fertile than them.

Here are a few agencies, two state (MD, OH) and one multi-state, that recommend fertilizing in distinctly northern ponds, including several states that get colder than NY:

http://www.mdsg.umd.edu/programs/extension/aquaculture/finfish/factsheets/FF8/index.php

http://www.fish.washington.edu/wrac/images/wrac-104.PDF

http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/wildlife/Home/fishing/pond/fishproduction/tabid/6223/Default.aspx

Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
The point was not if there is FA or if fertilization is used up north but rather the recommendation to others to use fertilization in ponds if they have natural fertility. If one does that they risk to dense a plankton bloom and a DO crash. IMO an increase in the risk of a low DO event is a much more serious problem than a little FA. After all you can deal with FA in other ways without increasing the risk of killing your fish.
















Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thanks to all for the replies. My attempt to control FA with pond dye was a shoot from the hip response. It certainly made for some eye catching blue water but nothing else. In my case, and as Walt mentioned, I see FA blanketing the pond bottom even before ice out. Fertilization is certainly an option but my little puddle receives a good supply of inflow/outflow most of the year. Holding to that fact, this was gleaned from one of the articles linked above.

"Ponds with excessive water flow should not be fertilized. In ponds such as these, you are probably wasting time and contributing to nutrient overload, or enrichment, in waters downstream from your pond. As a general rule, if the total volume of water flowing out of a pond in 30 days exceeds the total pond volume, you should not fertilize. The added nutrients will probably not be in the pond long enough to develop adequate blooms."

Given the size of this puddle, removal of FA through manual means is not that bad. I don't mind dancing with the rake on occasion but this year, someone has put way too many quarters in the jukebox.

Russ

Russ #189143 10/23/09 07:36 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Just a quick end of season update:

Within the past week, I've moved the BG and YP to new cages in preparation for the coming winter season. By "new" cages I mean algae free/clean cages. In doing so, its the first time I've sampled the fish to check their growth. To date, both species of fish have been caged for 4 months and two weeks.

BG: Initial stocking was 43, not the 30 I thought. To date, I've lost 8. Of the 35 that remain, the average runs 5-6". Its interesting to note that some are not that much bigger than the day they went into the cages while on the other side of the scale, a couple are just short of 7". With surface water temps at 52 degrees, no longer do I see any near the surface, waiting for feed.

YP: Initial stocking was 39, again not the 30 I thought. To date, I've had only one go belly up. Like the BG, their sizes vary. Average is 6-7", with one topping the 8" mark.

I plan to continue feeding worm chunks on occasion till ice covers the pond. The cages will not be pulled again till next spring, which won't come soon enough.

Switching to the pond itself, I'm especially happy to report that last weekend I landed three very nice BG. 1 measured in at 9" with the other two hitting the 9 1/2" mark! Needless to say it was a double Depends moment for me. I apologize in that I do not have pictures of these fish but my sister was gracious enough to assist me during the cage swap and took a few snapshots that I will try to post.

Russ

Big Blue 1



Big Blue 2



Big Blue 3



Growout cage BG



Growout cage YP






Last edited by ewest; 11/06/09 08:33 AM. Reason: add pics
Russ #189150 10/23/09 07:59 PM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 13,589
Likes: 251
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Online Content
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 13,589
Likes: 251
"...it was a double Depends moment..."

These can be tough times.


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."

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Question on fish color change. The weekend of 10/25, this BG puddle gave up the biggest BG to date....a nice 10"er. Beautiful dark blue hue with a golden chest. This past weekend, my neighbor landed another 10" beauty but the color was different. Without the benefit of a tag, could the same fish exhibit such a distinct color change in one weeks time?
About three weeks ago, with Fall leaf drop and substantial rains (2-3"), the pond has taken on its characteristic coal black color.

I'd like to think this pond holds more than one 10 BG.

Thanks

Russ

Russ #190909 11/04/09 06:25 PM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 10,458
Likes: 2
C
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame
Lunker
C
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 10,458
Likes: 2
It is possible for a BG to change color dramatically in a very short period of time.

Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
A
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
A
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
Congrats Russ on your fat BG, you get an A+.
For not providing pics you get a D-.



Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ I will find a few of the prior threads on fish color. BG can change color in a few seconds. If you had one that size there are probably several more just like it.

http://www.pondboss.com/forums/ubbthread...=true#Post85635

http://www.pondboss.com/forums/ubbthread...=true#Post74247



Last edited by ewest; 11/04/09 07:43 PM.















Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Bump - see Russ's pics added above. Nice results.
















Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
A
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
A
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
Nice pics, they appear to be well fed.



Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ - The dramatic color change of the 2 large BG you caught was very likely due to them being a male and a female fish. I assume you have both sexes in the pond.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Thank you Eric for posting the photos.

Bill, yes there are male and female BGs in the pond.

Some notes on the caged BG and YP (for future reference), along with the possibility of adding some useful info for others.

Stocking: Looking back, one of the initial mistakes I made was not verifying exactly what I had prior to releasing the fish in the cages. With Bill's Rule #1 for cage raising fish, minimize stress, firmly tattooed in my mind I simply added the fish to the cages once I got home. I see this mistake now in the numbers. I thought I was getting 30 fish of each species but the numbers say otherwise. Thankfully, I did not get any unwanted species in the mix. Won't repeat that one again.

Cages: So far the cages have held up well. The twine and mesh are still firmly intact and secure. I know I have turtles (snappers)in the pond but they or any other critter have not bothered the cages. When the cages are swapped out next spring, to check the extent of algae fouling, I will replace the pool noodles with plastic jugs. The noodles are beginning to fray, at least the part that is exposed to the sun but I'm certain they will last till spring.

Feeding: This is one area I need to improve upon. In the beginning, I started feeding worm bits. The way I did it, it was easy to see the pecking order getting established early on. In conversation with Bill C, he noted how this would be one factor leading to the variation in fish sizes that are now evident, both with the BG and YP. (Bill please inject any corrections you deem necessary).

Losses: To date I'm still down 8 BG and one YP. All summer long, at least during feeding, I had a handful of welfare bass and BG circling the cages, hoovering up any handouts. Could/would the presence of these fish, especially the bass, stress the fish enough to cause death? Of the ones that died, there were no external signs leading to a cause.

Goals/Grade: The initial goal of this project was to see, if in fact, I could cage raise some fish. To that extent I'll give this experiment a B+. Always room for improvement. The next goal is to see how they survive the winter.

Thanks to everyone for all your help.

- Russ



Last edited by Russ; 11/06/09 05:00 PM.
Russ #191122 11/06/09 09:19 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
Russ - I too have never had problems with turtles damaging cages despite two large turtles frequent the cage area for surplus pellets. For floatation I've found the 2 liter pop bottles hold up well when expsosed to UV light, however I prefer the 2 quart Ocean Spray clear juice bottles. They hold up very well to UV and have indentations to help hold them to the cages when tied with twine.
I doubt the fish outside the cages caue any stress to fish in the cage. Much more stress will come from pecking order stress from inside the cages. Fish will bump and bruse each other which can lead to not eating and fungal infections. Also fish that don't feed or go off feed will die especially if they are dominated or bullied by other fish. I consider your losses minimal and quite normal. I would rate your first attempt at cage raising an A- or A.

If my caged fish are plump at freeze up and not overcrowded, I get no losses during winter ice cover. As soon as ice is melted around cages feed caged fish a small amount of chopped worms or soft rolled sinking pellets.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 11/06/09 09:23 PM.

aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Bill, Cecil or any northerner cage raising fish

How concerned should I be with algae fouling of the cages before ice over? While feeding the other day, I noticed some buildup and decided to pull both cages for cleaning.

As a side note, there were no floaters of either species.

Russ

Russ #193278 11/23/09 09:18 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
B
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
B
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 15,062
Likes: 447
I would clean most of attached algae from cages before ice formation. I try to have my cages free of algae growth before the fish have to endure the rigors of winter. If the algae on cages is a cold water algae it could get a little more growth under the ice or after ice melt. Cold water algae growth could easily increase on cages since I try to keep the snow off ice around the cages which allows light penetration around the cages. A little algae on the cages could help keep DO slightly higher around cages.


aka Pond Doctor & Dr. Perca Read Pond Boss Magazine -
America's Journal of Pond Management
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Just a note for future reference. Last weeks snow/rain combo added a sustantial amount of weight to the fish cage top covers. As a result, one half of both cages went under. Fortunately the snow/ice bung in each cage prevented any escapes. Free floating cages (without dock access) can be challenging. Thankfully the weather warmed, both tops cleared and the cages righted themselves.

Merry Christmas

Russ

Russ #195860 12/18/09 08:07 PM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 28,269
Likes: 736
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 28,269
Likes: 736
Thanks for the warning, I'll have to keep an eye on mine. I have 1" chicken wire for a top cover.


www.hoosierpondpros.com


http://www.pondboss.com/subscribe.asp?c=4
3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Just some mental musings.

Since building this little puddle, this is the first year that we've had ice over occur before Christmas. Augering the ice two weeks ago showed a depth of 6". What started out as nice clear ice quickly turned to a combination of ice/snow thanks to a storm of mixed precipitation, rain/snow. It will be interesting to see what, if any, affect this "cloudy" ice cover will have on spring algae growth. In the past, with clear ice, I could see algae forming on the bottom long before the ice cover melts.

Russ

Russ #198908 01/11/10 01:56 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Minor update: Augered an inspection hole in both cages this past weekend. 8" of ice right now. Could not see any fish in either cage.....water was too dark. Dropped in a few pre-soaked pellets. Got hits from the fish in both cages.

Russ

Russ #198927 01/11/10 07:16 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
That is good news Russ. I would sure feed them a little over the winter. Not much though.
















Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Spring update:

With the hard water now completely gone off of both ponds, I thought it would be time for an update on my caged fish. Both cages survived the winter intact with no damage. Algae fouling was much less than expected. Ice over this year was earlier than previous years so I do not know what affect, if any, that may have had. Last weekend I took advantage of unseasonably warm weather to swap out the cages, for cleaning purposes. Mixed results on fish survival.
Based on pre-winter numbers, I lost 4 yellow perch but no bluegills. After the cage exchange, I monitored the fish for the next couple of days for any stress injury/death but everything looks good. I have not yet started pellet feeding due to low water temps. For curiosity sake I did toss a handfull of pellets, Aquamax D506 (straight from the bag.....no presoaking) into the pond to see what would happen. To my surprise, I had a half dozen BG take the pellets.

The geese are back, rats are scouting out the pond, water color is a nice blue green right now with limited algae. This years fun may involve an attempt at cage raising some black crappie. Looking forward to another season working this puddle.

Russ

Russ #210527 03/29/10 09:37 AM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 10,458
Likes: 2
C
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame
Lunker
C
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 10,458
Likes: 2
Thanks for the update... Sounds like you had some pretty good success this winter.

Russ #210726 03/30/10 10:51 AM
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
A
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
A
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
Russ good to hear the winter wasn't too hard on your fish.
Big warm-up coming in a couple days, hope it takes the rest of my Ice.



Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Russ thanks for the update. Any pics to share?
















Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 15,978
Likes: 264
D
Moderator
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Lunker
D
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 15,978
Likes: 264
AP, with the flooding that I heard about on TV today, the ice might melt from all of the rain.


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.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
CJ, I'm very happy with the results to date. Next step is to get them back on pellets. Surface water temperature was 48 degrees but I hope to see more activity in a few weeks.

AP, We had a good winter down our way. First time in awhile we were slicing ice with the skates before Christmas. At one point, we had 10" of ice to auger through. On the other hand, maple season was a big disappointment.

Eric, to be quite honest, I did not notice any drastic changes in the fish. Its as if they pulled a Rip Van Winkle on me for the past few months.

- Russ

Russ #210821 03/30/10 07:05 PM
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
A
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
A
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
Dave, we're getting moderate rain here in the southern adirondacks, but I checked the personal weather stations up by the pond and they've only gotten .10" of precip., eastern mass. is getting the worst flooding in their history.

Russ my neighbor owns a sugar bush about 20 miles from here and he only made half of the maple syrup he normally makes.



Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 10,458
Likes: 2
C
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Hall of Fame
Lunker
C
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 10,458
Likes: 2
Why such poor sap production this year?

Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
A
Ambassador
Lunker
Offline
Ambassador
Lunker
A
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,135
We didn't get much snow down here in Feb. & March and the rain and warm spells in march didn't allow the cold nights needed for good sap production.



Russ #298729 07/09/12 06:45 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
R
Russ Offline OP
Lunker
OP Offline
Lunker
R
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,011
Knocking the dust off of this old thread to add a major milestone.
Yesterday afternoon, I landed a 10.5" 452 gram bluegill that looked to be in very fine condition. Even though it's a bit shy of my 1 lb goal, its an accomplishment all PondBoss members can be proud of.

THANKS for getting me there folks !!

- Russ

Russ #298730 07/09/12 06:49 PM
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
E
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014
Lunker
E
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 21,448
Likes: 257
Good to hear from you Russ and the pond. Did you get a pic? In the past Russ has had some beautifully conditioned fish (YP and BG).
















Page 1 of 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Link Copied to Clipboard