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#268973 08/29/11 04:48 PM
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Since my ponds have dried up, I am beginning to think about restocking (assuming that they ever fill up again, no sign of this drought ever letting up). My ponds are both very open. The structure consists of cover along the bank and grass (1 to 2 feet tall) on the bottom.

What is the best forage species to stock? I assume the FHM and GSH will be eaten faster than they produce? Will TFS be able to establish themselves?

I will stock CNBG, but would like another LMB food in there so that there are enough CNBG left for me. Am I likely to get one of those forage species started, or do I just accept that CNBG is the bet I can do?

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When your ponds are dry consider getting them deepened so a future drought is less likely to remove all the water.
TFShad will do better if the pond is fertilized or fertile enough to produce natural plankton blooms.
Initilally stocking some minnows/shiners will jump start bass growth assuming LMB less than 6" are stocked.


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How big is your pond? Generally for TFS, you want at least 3 acres and preferably 5... You can stock GSH, but if your pond becomes bass crowded or you have few spawning nursery areas in your pond, the LMB will eventually remove them.

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Both ponds are 10 acres. We did dig some deeper holes in the shallower of the two ponds, but them drying is not a normal occurrence. We are just in a very bad drought combined with the sandy soil in the area not holding water real well.

I had caught many 3 to 4 pound bass, and even one at 7-1/2 in the couple of years prior to the drought. And the ponds have never been stocked, except my mother nature. The river during flood stage can get into the ponds, but it hasn't done it since I bought the place in 2005. I am sure it will eventually restock itself, but I don't want to wait that long.

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Well, the drought seems to have broken. The East pond refilled a couple of weeks ago, and the rain this past week has topped off the West pond. Both ponds look beautiful. If only there were still soem fish in them. Now my thoughts are turning to stocking... Do I shell out the bucks, or let Mother Nature do her thing...

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As a bystander on this, I'm wondering if it's worth spending to much money if the ponds occasionally flood?

This doesn't affect me personally, but I'd also be interested on advice for this scenario.

Last edited by FireIsHot; 02/20/12 03:54 PM.

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You can stock your pond and get a healthy bass population established now. That way when it floods and undesirable fish get into it, at least you will have some bass in their to control their reproduction.

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I agree. Stock it with the fish you want, they will help control the unwanted fish that might find their way into the ponds.


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The statements made by CJBS and esshup are true. This way you get the pond you want and you do not have to fight a larger problem. You waste less time working to correct a problem.

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That is the way I am leaning. I don't think there is ever wholesale flooding from the river. It seems to just back up into the ponds through their natural drains. I think that unwanted species moving in will be limited.

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Then again, maybe it does flood completely from the river. This is the road between the two ponds, the river has backed up into then and they are higher than they have ever been since we bought the property, both ponds out of their banks. Looks like God has his own plan for restocking...


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