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That is a common aquaculture method for raising food sized tilapia in the shortest period - all males.

All supplemental stocking into a pond with adult predators is a size/numbers game. Habituation helps reduce the risk of over/under stocking. There are threads here with the science on the subject.
















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Eric - Good study; thanks a lot for finding and posting it. Good data. I used the high and low factors (bass length/tilapia length) of maximum consumable size of tilapia that bass were fed in the study to calculate the lengths of tilapia that several sizes of LM bass were able to eat. Bass 16" long would consume 4.4"-5.5" tilapia, 18" bass would eat 5.0"-6.6" tilapia and 20" bass would eat 5.5"-7.4" tilapia. Habitat/cover, size of LMbass and other forage species evidently play a role in how well newly stocked tilapia will survive after stocked into a pond with adult bass.


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I knew you would look at the data so I did not offer an opinion in my post above. I agree.
















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I find that bluegill are the top predators of YOY tilapia. Seeing one that is between 2 and 6 inches is very rare.


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Originally Posted By: Dave Davidson1
I find that bluegill are the top predators of YOY tilapia. Seeing one that is between 2 and 6 inches is very rare.


Dave,

Can you explain this a bit further?

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Is it possible that the "maximum consumable size" for the blue tilapia was over-estimated in the tests therefore making them less desirable at that size?


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No chance that the fish were miss measured in that study. This type study is subject to rigorous standards and test checks and is then peer reviewed. Plus this one is by two of the top Fisheries Science guys out there. I sometimes disagree with some aspects of this type study and can find conclusions or assumptions I disagree with. However I have never seen one where I thought the data was wrong or the methods used questionable.
















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Steve, when I see the parent guarding the fry,(usually around weeds) there are a lot of small BG hanging very close. When they get released from the mouth, at least one BG gets a snack. Very few make it to maturity. However, the BG do quite well.


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BG are also the biggest eaters of LMB and BG fry. Its a numbers thing. Lots of hungry BG mouths.
















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Originally Posted By: ewest
BG are also the biggest eaters of LMB and BG fry. Its a numbers thing. Lots of hungry BG mouths.


Absolutely. I've witnessed my BG foraging in the shallows for fry and small yoy fish many times. I think the predatory nature of larger BG is possibly under-utilized, from a management perspective.


"Forget pounds and ounces, I'm figuring displacement!"

If we accept that: MBG(+)FGSF(=)HBG(F1)
And we surmise that: BG(>)HBG(F1) while GSF(<)HBG(F1)
Would it hold true that: HBG(F1)(+)AM500(x)q.d.(=)1.5lbGRWT?
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Eric,
I wasn't thinking the fish were mis-measured.

How is it determined what the "maximum consumable size" tilapia is for a 12 inch bass or a 16 inch bass? Is this done by some sort of scientific method?


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As I know it, maximum consuable size of forage for a predator fish that swallows its food whole, is to measure the gape of the predator's mouth. FYI - the gape is slightly greater horizontal compared to the vertical measurement.


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In this case that was not a measurment but a known (from prior work by other scientists) like RWs for example. That was used to decide what size forage was to be stocked for both BG and tilapia. It is based on gape size or the predators used. It incorporates also the width of the prey as well as max gape
















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Like with most posts when things have been explained and repeated over and over in posts, I tend to qualify my comments/advice in my mind and not in the post...I do not deal with stocking southern waters, because I deal with the more cold tolerant Pure Strain of Blue Tilapia and only stock/advise in more northern climates......

As for 4" tilapia easily avoiding LMB in a pond, I am referring to offspring of stocked Blue tilapia that have reached the 4" class....These tilapia grew to that size due to rapid growth and avoiding predation from their quickness..not so much from just getting "lucky". While as Scott said, prey will get chased up onto banks occasionally, and the surviving offspring percentage reaching and exceeding 4" will be low...late season catches of fish that are clearly too small to have been original stockers is my anecdotal evidence of fry survival to adulthood...

Again, these numbers may be low, possibly even insignificant. I have only seen lone 14'+ LMB stalk and attack 4-6" Blues and wind up missing, looking around wondering what happened to their prey....



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Originally Posted By: Rainman
I have only seen lone 14'+ LMB stalk and attack 4-6" Blues and wind up missing, looking around wondering what happened to their prey....


Do you find bass working as a group, almost like a wild pack of dogs, when trying to catch tilapia?

I saw this behavior at a lake in east Texas about 3 months ago. This owner has nursery ponds above the big lake with a pipe connecting the two. I arrived two days after one of the releases of tilpaia that were raised in the nursery ponds in October and saw at least ten 3 to 6lb bass herding tilapia in a corner of the lake near the pipe that flushed the tilapia in the lake to begin with. I watched for almost an hour. About every 2 to 3 minutes one of the bass would make a run for a tilapia; while the other bass kept a perimeter around the tilapia. I thought this might be an isolated case.

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I've seen 'wolfpacks' of hungry Bass herding small fish into the shallows many times. And that was with BG as the forage. And yes, every so often one would make a strafing run while the rest maintained the perimeter.


"Forget pounds and ounces, I'm figuring displacement!"

If we accept that: MBG(+)FGSF(=)HBG(F1)
And we surmise that: BG(>)HBG(F1) while GSF(<)HBG(F1)
Would it hold true that: HBG(F1)(+)AM500(x)q.d.(=)1.5lbGRWT?
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Ive seen a snook hit a tilpia so hard I heard a thud sound.
prob a 6" tilapia...
Snook are a bit faster than LMB though...


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I'm sure schools of bass are commonplace...I just haven't had the pleasure to stick around a pond long enough to see it...lol



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LMB waiting at the stocking location is common. That is why you habituate them with a net or enclosure. Thick cover in the area can also help.
















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Originally Posted By: SP
I've seen 'wolfpacks' of hungry Bass herding small fish into the shallows many times. And that was with BG as the forage. And yes, every so often one would make a strafing run while the rest maintained the perimeter.

Me too, I could watch them all day. Everytime we get questions on the forum about stunted and skinny bass I see them in my minds eye, corralling and eating those BG day after day after day, until there's just not much left. Really hard to overcome that degree of predation by building the forage base alone.

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