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Joined: Mar 2004
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Hi Chris I have enjoyed reading your posts. I think you are being wise not to stock cc since you dont live there and cant remove them on a regular basis. I have two suggestions my first one would be to purchase Bob Lusks book raising trophy bass. I would recommend it even if your goals are to raise trophy bluegill. my second suggestion would be to put some wooden pallets in some areas for the fatheads to spawn on. You often can get them free and are less likely to be turned over by the wind than foam board. I have seen some guys on the forum build wooden hotels with them by stacking and screwing them together. I am still not sure what I think about pvc structures. I placed fifteen of the bill dance fish attractors out last year in one area and have still not caught a single fish around them. I think Eric has a study showing that fish will use natural materials first before using man made materials. I have caught much more fish around dead trees and rock piles that I have made than around cover I have made out of plastic, rubber or pvc. My experience has been that natural rock piles have been the best fish attractors for catching fish than anything else I have tried.

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I don't know if your still reading this Chris but if you are looking for wooden pallets to sink in your pond I have just the thing. I have many (probably 75 ) hardwood (oak/maple) pallets at my business. These are discarded but in good shape. When my pond was being bulit I banded several togther and placed them in the pond bottom with cinder blocks on top. The are hardwood so they should decay slowly. You are welcome to any of these if you could think of a way to sink them. Freeze over in the winter maybe? Let me know.

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Randy - I have not been on the forum in quite some time. Thanks for responding to my post. My FHM were doing great when I was last there for deer gun season in December. I plan to add the LMB and RES recomended this spring. I plan to contact Mike Marlowe to see when I should plan to stock them. With my FHM dying issues, I may just see what he would charge to come deliver/ stock them for me. Have you made any plans to stock yet? Chris


Brand New Pond - SE Ohio
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James - Thanks, I have not been on the forum for some time. I appreciate the comments. My FHM seemed to be doing fine when I was last there in early December. I plan to proceed with stocking the recommended LMB and RES in the spring. I'll let you know how it goes, really enjoying having the pond. We plan to build and move there next year. Chris


Brand New Pond - SE Ohio
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Chris and Randy - I've had a good time reading this thread since I was born and raised in Kanauga. But I have to ask. Why don't you guys just go to the Ohio River for your minnow needs? My Dad and I used to get all our minnows in the river, nice shiners. Used a glass trap baited with saltines. Granted you might have to watch out for non-minnows but if I still lived there that's what I'd do.

Uncle Walt.

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Not everyone has the experience or confidence to successfully ID each species caught in a trap, seine or net. One mistake and you could have a major mess on your hands. For those who are experienced enough to ID certain species, it is an alternative. However, it is a challenge to collect enough "minnows" to stock. Generally, this means stocking lower numbers and giving them time in their new home to reproduce. This method can allow you to utilize species not found or rarely found in commercial fish hatcheries, species like spotfin shiners and bluntnose minnows which make excellent forage fish in most ponds. The other major risk factor is the introduction of unwanted things... From parasites, to disease to other nasty hitch hikers like aquatic plants. These risks can be mitigated, but the average pond owner probably isn't capable of this. That is why hatchery bought fish are generally recommended.

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Yes, there are risks but the great thing about a glass trap is you can see what you have. I thin most guys can tell the difference between a shiner and just about anything else. And you can make a good haul in an afternoon, at least when the river is down (won't see that for a few weeks down there now). I've seined my fair share of creeks in SE OH and I'll agree with you there. You get all kinds of stuff in a seine. Frankly, you can get hitchhikers from the hatcheries too. They just seine out their ponds the day before the truck hits your hometown. Granted they test for parasites and other nasties. But I'm not convinced they are totally risk free.

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Uncle Walt, spend some more time on here and watch the photos come in and then see what fish the poster thinks they are and what they end up being. Not many people are experienced in telling FHM apart from creek chubs or telling them apart from YOY carp. And it isn't just IDing "shiners". There are only but a handful of cyprinid species that have any value as a pond forage species. Many will not cause issues if stocked but have no real value, some can be very deleterious.

Add in that when you transfer fish from the wild to your pond, there is a high chance you will also transfer some water with them. In that water can be any of a number of nasties. Is this possible from a hatchery, yes... However, if you do your homework you can find highly reputable hatcheries that do not have that issue.

When someone spends several thousand dollars on stocking fish, for the average pond owner short of detailed assistance from someone who is experienced in stocking wild fish, I generally wouldn't recommend it. I think there are many benefits to obtaining fish from wild sources whether it being from utilizing a trap of any kind or a seine, but there are also many risks. Those risks need to be made very clear to any pond owner who is considering sourcing forage fish from the wild.

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