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#214685 04/28/10 05:29 AM
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I've been reading everything I can on FHM and gambusa minnows, both of which I have in my pond. I want to set up an area in my barn for a tank for nothing but growing gambusa minnows. It's interesting to note that while there has been much debate about how to set up FHM's so they can spawn but no where near the same for the gambusa. Is it because its the same for both? If the gambusa is so much better at surviving in a lmb pond, why has there not been the same amount of threads with associated data for them? Am I missing something crucial? Where can I find data related to building a small fishery geared towards supplying my pond? Im not thinking big time, just something extra for my fish without having to pay $16.00 a pound for them in town. I know I dont have to do this and could just use the feeder to make up the difference. I already feed, and will continue to do so even if i get this idea off the ground. I want to do this so I can learn and most of all try to get my kids more interested in biology involved with a pond. I feel pretty confident that I could do this for a small amount of money. If it pays off and the kids decide to follow a path similar in higher education then its money well spent. I dont want my kids to do this because I want it, I want them to see that there is so much more out there than just what they learn in school. If it inspires them at all then I have accomplished my goal.


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Gambusia, being live bearers, have no special spawning needs. All they need is a little shallow water to keep from being eaten out of existence. I suppose gams aren't real popular among LMB fishermen because of their unimpressive size. Although large bass will eat them, they're not large enough to be a primary source of forage. I think they're pretty important as forage for smaller bass, because they're so reliable. Not only do the LMB eat them, but so do most other fish. Their feeding requirements are also minimal. They do quite well in a muddy, seemingly barren water hole. Without predators, they breed amazingly fast because live bearing is so efficient.

Good luck with the kids. I think an hour of "hands-on" experience is worth many classroom hours.

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I swear by Gambusia. Others don't. I think pound for pound or weight ratio they are one of the toughest fish in the world. They can live in brackish water, O2 depleted water. Warm water. But they do need open surface. I have a rather large pond dedicated to them, and I put in 200, and now have 10's of 1000's. Unlike FHM, they don't lay eggs, don't need anything special. And when they are bearing those young live, you might like some vegetative cover for them to hide. I have seen them kick out five to six breedings a season. Little tiny 1/4" guys swimming everywhere.

Big lmb don't chase them, but little lmb inhale them, as do other small forage that end up lmb food also. To me, a critical link in the food chain. Where fhm eventually vanish, those gambusia hang in there, as long as the have shallow water cover. Also, they readily take pellets, and will even just peck away on large pellets.

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> I put in 200, and now have 10's of 1000's.

I was fishing over the weekend, and when my Roadrunner was reeled in close to shore, I saw what I thought was the water fizzing like it was carbonated. I soon realized it was thousands of baby gams fleeing ahead of my bait, flying out of the water. My BG and baby LMB will be eating well this summer. grin




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Thanks for the help guys, now I know enough to start. I had a feeling the reason for fhms being of more interest was due to size. Due to those feelings I also felt that even if no lmbs ate the gams then at least it would be additional forage for the smaller fish, which would in turn go to the lmbs at a dinner time of their choosing smile I took my daughter to the local bait shop to let her see the container that fhms swim in. As luck had it there were 1000's of them, big and small. I got the wide eyed look of amazement followed by the onslaught of questions. Hook, line, and sinker! Now its time to get to work before the interest is lost...


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I had the pleasure of watching the gambusia at work in the food chain yesterday. They were all the way up against the shore, trying to hide in weeds, and this baby 4 leaf clover stuff. Maybe one inch of water, or less. A lot of fat females. Full grown they are not much smaller than FHM. Just a few inches from them were bg and baby lmb. Waiting for a dummy. The entire time I was there these hungry waiting fish were popping. Going into the shallows after these gambusia. Sometimes I like to just sit back and watch the show.

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Originally Posted By: The Pond Frog
Sometimes I like to just sit back and watch the show.


I'm a big fish watcher too.

Gams seem to be among the smartest fish in my pond. You can fool the once, but
seldom twice.

Every time I transplant gams into my pond, they huddle up on the surface and
refuse to leave the immediate release area. It takes them a good while to get
comfortable in their new surroundings. They are terrified to swim below the
surface for ~24 hours. I believe they learn every feature in their surroundings
in minute detail. I believe they can memorize at least 1000 feet of shoreline.

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Ive also been thinking of making some kind of tank system to grow out some bluegill and other fish in my barn until they are big enough to go in the pond. Heres a link to a system that I found. Its more than I wan to pay but I was thinking of building something like this.
http://www.kens-fishfarm.com/c-56-tank-fish-farms.aspx

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Have you thought of digging a "mini pond"?

Mine is around 10x15x3' deep, and is about 20 feet from my big pond. A small, inexpensive solar pump pulls water from the main pond to keep it full and cool. The purpose of my little pond is to grow my own fishing bait, (fathead and shrimp in my case). But I suppose you could use it as a grow out pond for almost any species.

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Holy sheet! Talk about DIY. You could put something together custom made for what you want for some time and 1/4 of those prices. Might even be some threads here already. I'm working on several growout tanks. My starting tank is the 300 gal commercial rubbermaid. Koi guys really use a lot of them. I'm making a few this year, whenever I time, which is not presently.

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Gambusa are actually extremely important. They feed your baby Bass, Bluegill, Catfish. When your baby Bass grow too large for Mosquito larvae but not quite big enough to consume a 3-4" FHM what are they going to eat? They eat Gamusa minnows in the shallows. This excels your fishes growth and the fact that the only thing Gambusa's need is shallow water(5" to 1ft deep) and some shallow water plants, they will feed your pond year in and year out. They are very important controlling your Mosquito populations and their hardyness is unbeleiveable. They are exactly like FHM, just they are livebearers and only get .5" to 1".

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FK1, are you sure that fatties are livebearers?


Just do it...
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I agree with thier place in the food chain 100%. However I see them inhabit areas where no other fish go. Less than 1/2" of water, and right on the shore. And I have mixed tanks with both FHM and gambusia, they spend all of thier lives in different stratas. Gambusia mainly on the surface, they are built like guppies with upward or surface facing mouths. And one more thing, females can get up to 2 1/2". I have 100's that big.

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I went to the local fish store today and talked to them about building my own system using those 300 gal. Rubbermaid water tanks. The pump was around $600.00 and tanks were about $200.00 each and then I would need a UV sterilizer and the stuff to make my own filter using a 100 gal rubbermaid tub. All together a 3 tank system with everything would be about $1500.00-$2000.00 so that way was a good bit cheaper. How many pounds of fish could be kept in each 300 gal. tank? I was thinking of a three tank system and have BG in one Bass in one and something else in the last one and just use it to grow them out until I could put them in the main pond.

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You know I think there are many variables as to how many lbs. of fish you could keep in each tank long term. Plus, It might be best to keep that constant by growing them out and letting some go weekly and bimonthly while others gain weight.

Just some of the variables off the top of my head:

Species
pump capacity
filtration capacity
filtration maintenance frequency
water temp
dissolved or readily available O2 ratios
even the set up itself

I am debating just getting one giant pump/filter system and running a series of tank with ability to isolate for infrequent maintenance. Also having a venturi/drain center of each for manual morning flush out. I think you could get down to $1,000 per tank. Or close. I have 7 tanks now but they are dedicated for lilies and more lilies, plus one open for fish farm gimme's. I need at least 3 more dedicated for that system. But as it stands now I have countless gambusia and am starting fhm in them with the lilies. Each tank has some type of fry safe zone such as a parrotfeather area, frogbit ot hyacinth. Each day I see new ones. I might start a fry only tank also.

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Originally Posted By: jsand13
I went to the local fish store today and talked to them about building my own system using those 300 gal. Rubbermaid water tanks. The pump was around $600.00 and tanks were about $200.00 each and then I would need a UV sterilizer and the stuff to make my own filter using a 100 gal rubbermaid tub. All together a 3 tank system with everything would be about $1500.00-$2000.00 so that way was a good bit cheaper. How many pounds of fish could be kept in each 300 gal. tank? I was thinking of a three tank system and have BG in one Bass in one and something else in the last one and just use it to grow them out until I could put them in the main pond.


Tell me more about this 600.00 pump, like specs and mfg.

And then, if you will: Tell me why you need a UV system, and what is it supposed to do?

Rubbermaid stock tanks are just that, stock watering tanks. They are dark and hard to clean, and have too many bumps and obstructions to good water currents. You would be better off epoxy coating some galvanized steel stock tanks. The lines are much cleaner, and you will be much more able to adjust currents.

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Originally Posted By: The Pond Frog
You know I think there are many variables as to how many lbs. of fish you could keep in each tank long term. Plus, It might be best to keep that constant by growing them out and letting some go weekly and bimonthly while others gain weight.

Just some of the variables off the top of my head:

Species
pump capacity
filtration capacity
filtration maintenance frequency
water temp
dissolved or readily available O2 ratios
even the set up itself

I am debating just getting one giant pump/filter system and running a series of tank with ability to isolate for infrequent maintenance. Also having a venturi/drain center of each for manual morning flush out. I think you could get down to $1,000 per tank. Or close. I have 7 tanks now but they are dedicated for lilies and more lilies, plus one open for fish farm gimme's. I need at least 3 more dedicated for that system. But as it stands now I have countless gambusia and am starting fhm in them with the lilies. Each tank has some type of fry safe zone such as a parrotfeather area, frogbit ot hyacinth. Each day I see new ones. I might start a fry only tank also.


Did you know that Temperature is a constant in every Engineering Equation, with regards to having fish in tanks!

Why would you want a giant pump and filter system if you have multiple tanks?

Just curious.

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I don't think a UV sterilizer would be needed if your RAS was indoors out of the sun, Too much UV can kill the bacteria in your filter and then you've got Nitrite problems, been there done that with my backyard mini-pond.
The 100gal RAS I have works fine without a UV sterilizer and my fish are fed very heavily.



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Originally Posted By: JKB
Originally Posted By: jsand13
I went to the local fish store today and talked to them about building my own system using those 300 gal. Rubbermaid water tanks. The pump was around $600.00 and tanks were about $200.00 each and then I would need a UV sterilizer and the stuff to make my own filter using a 100 gal rubbermaid tub. All together a 3 tank system with everything would be about $1500.00-$2000.00 so that way was a good bit cheaper. How many pounds of fish could be kept in each 300 gal. tank? I was thinking of a three tank system and have BG in one Bass in one and something else in the last one and just use it to grow them out until I could put them in the main pond.


Tell me more about this 600.00 pump, like specs and mfg.

And then, if you will: Tell me why you need a UV system, and what is it supposed to do?

Rubbermaid stock tanks are just that, stock watering tanks. They are dark and hard to clean, and have too many bumps and obstructions to good water currents. You would be better off epoxy coating some galvanized steel stock tanks. The lines are much cleaner, and you will be much more able to adjust currents.



Huh? Bumps and obstructions? May I ask how many do you have? I have no idea what you are talking about, and I have many of them. Also, they are probably the #1 choice for koi enthusiasts dyi's. And thier fish are worth about 100 X what I am using them for. But I will have a mixed butterfly normal koi carp tank soon. They arrive ready to go, all you have to do is bore out a center drain. Bang for the buck best tank on the market. And extremely easy to clean. Galvanized stock tanks are too expensive, and are not premade with an inlet/outlet. They even have a float shutoff for the 300 gal stock tank.

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Originally Posted By: adirondack pond
I don't think a UV sterilizer would be needed if your RAS was indoors out of the sun, Too much UV can kill the bacteria in your filter and then you've got Nitrite problems, been there done that with my backyard mini-pond.
The 100gal RAS I have works fine without a UV sterilizer and my fish are fed very heavily.


I am going to go without the uv. Rely solely on benficial bacteria and sediment flushes. May I ask to you use sand, bio balls or?

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Originally Posted By: The Pond Frog
Originally Posted By: JKB
Originally Posted By: jsand13
I went to the local fish store today and talked to them about building my own system using those 300 gal. Rubbermaid water tanks. The pump was around $600.00 and tanks were about $200.00 each and then I would need a UV sterilizer and the stuff to make my own filter using a 100 gal rubbermaid tub. All together a 3 tank system with everything would be about $1500.00-$2000.00 so that way was a good bit cheaper. How many pounds of fish could be kept in each 300 gal. tank? I was thinking of a three tank system and have BG in one Bass in one and something else in the last one and just use it to grow them out until I could put them in the main pond.


Tell me more about this 600.00 pump, like specs and mfg.

And then, if you will: Tell me why you need a UV system, and what is it supposed to do?

Rubbermaid stock tanks are just that, stock watering tanks. They are dark and hard to clean, and have too many bumps and obstructions to good water currents. You would be better off epoxy coating some galvanized steel stock tanks. The lines are much cleaner, and you will be much more able to adjust currents.



Huh? Bumps and obstructions? May I ask how many do you have? I have no idea what you are talking about, and I have many of them. Also, they are probably the #1 choice for koi enthusiasts dyi's. And thier fish are worth about 100 X what I am using them for. But I will have a mixed butterfly normal koi carp tank soon. They arrive ready to go, all you have to do is bore out a center drain. Bang for the buck best tank on the market. And extremely easy to clean. Galvanized stock tanks are too expensive, and are not premade with an inlet/outlet. They even have a float shutoff for the 300 gal stock tank.


Don't get your skivvies all tied up into a knot.

I am not going to argue with you, just ain't worth it.

J

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Originally Posted By: The Pond Frog


I am going to go without the uv. Rely solely on benficial bacteria and sediment flushes. May I ask to you use sand, bio balls or?


I have a bubble bead filter, it works great.
Funny story, I bought the filter used last summer from a lady who had her Koi pond enlarged and she bought a larger filter, it was a beautiful double pond which was filled with all kinds of lilies, she offered me all I wanted cause they were chocking the ponds, like an idiot I said no thanks. Now after seeing lilies costing 20 bucks, I should have listened to my wife.
This woman has a 1500 gal tank in here basement and brings the Koi in for the winter.



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where can you purchase gambusa?

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Originally Posted By: adirondack pond
Originally Posted By: The Pond Frog


I am going to go without the uv. Rely solely on benficial bacteria and sediment flushes. May I ask to you use sand, bio balls or?


I have a bubble bead filter, it works great.
Funny story, I bought the filter used last summer from a lady who had her Koi pond enlarged and she bought a larger filter, it was a beautiful double pond which was filled with all kinds of lilies, she offered me all I wanted cause they were chocking the ponds, like an idiot I said no thanks. Now after seeing lilies costing 20 bucks, I should have listened to my wife.
This woman has a 1500 gal tank in here basement and brings the Koi in for the winter.



You would not believe the amount of koi enthusiasts that bring thier prized possessions in for the Winter. Makes sense though. Some people have thousands of dollars invested in them, and even worse emotional attachments. I think the koi on record lived 224 years. Not many pets outlive thier owners. What's even funnier is these people don't even think about money, it is no object to them and thier koi. I'll look into the bubble bead. It's amzing the money I make off of lilies. 2 gal potted are retailing for $37 now out here.

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Originally Posted By: JKB
Originally Posted By: The Pond Frog
Originally Posted By: JKB
Originally Posted By: jsand13
I went to the local fish store today and talked to them about building my own system using those 300 gal. Rubbermaid water tanks. The pump was around $600.00 and tanks were about $200.00 each and then I would need a UV sterilizer and the stuff to make my own filter using a 100 gal rubbermaid tub. All together a 3 tank system with everything would be about $1500.00-$2000.00 so that way was a good bit cheaper. How many pounds of fish could be kept in each 300 gal. tank? I was thinking of a three tank system and have BG in one Bass in one and something else in the last one and just use it to grow them out until I could put them in the main pond.


Tell me more about this 600.00 pump, like specs and mfg.

And then, if you will: Tell me why you need a UV system, and what is it supposed to do?

Rubbermaid stock tanks are just that, stock watering tanks. They are dark and hard to clean, and have too many bumps and obstructions to good water currents. You would be better off epoxy coating some galvanized steel stock tanks. The lines are much cleaner, and you will be much more able to adjust currents.



Huh? Bumps and obstructions? May I ask how many do you have? I have no idea what you are talking about, and I have many of them. Also, they are probably the #1 choice for koi enthusiasts dyi's. And thier fish are worth about 100 X what I am using them for. But I will have a mixed butterfly normal koi carp tank soon. They arrive ready to go, all you have to do is bore out a center drain. Bang for the buck best tank on the market. And extremely easy to clean. Galvanized stock tanks are too expensive, and are not premade with an inlet/outlet. They even have a float shutoff for the 300 gal stock tank.


Don't get your skivvies all tied up into a knot.

I am not going to argue with you, just ain't worth it.

J


I'd say that also if I was talking out my anus. My skivvies never get into a knot about an Internet post. How could they? I've been driving a fast attack sub trailing a Rusky missile sub during the Cold War. Almost sank going through Straights of Juan de Fuca in a sea state of 8. Internet forums are milquetoast in comparison. I pick up these tanks delivered to my door for under $200 a unit if I order 3. They pay for themselves in one season. I like you, I appreciate blissful posters.

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