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Surprised to here the GSF pulled off a spawn already. They must of came in with your RES if they were big enough to spawn.

When did you stock SMB and how many?

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I stocked my RES and FHM in August of 2013, so the GSF had last year to spawn.

I stocked 40 4-6" SMB in October of 2014. I tried catching some yesterday to see how they are doing, but I didn't get any to cooperate.


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You didn't catch any SMB probably because the smallies were full of FHM.


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Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
You didn't catch any SMB probably because the smallies were full of FHM.


Very likely, there are FHM all over the pond!

Bill, Any recommendations on how to manage the GSF that are in the pond now?


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Remove every GSF you catch and use fish/minnow traps frequently. Traps for GSF do not need to be baited when traps are set near shore and parallel to shore. As GSF become abundant expect the FHM numbers to significantly decline. GSF prey heavily on all types of fish fry.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 06/15/15 08:03 PM.

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My minnow trap showed up yesterday, so the kids and I put them in the water and went for a walk around the pond. 45 minutes later the kids wanted to see if we caught any, so I went and checked them. One trap had two and the other had around 30 GSF that quick! So I purged those and reset.

I just went out and checked them and collected another 70. They all measured 2-3" in length. That was way more than I figured I'd catch. I'll keep checking the traps and moving their location occasionally.

Can you use a bigger trap to catch the adults in the same fashion?


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Isn't a fyke net just a minnow trap on steroids? smile


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Pulled the minnow traps for the third time and we now have a total of 190 GSF out of the pond. I caught one that was about 7" yesterday. Put up a pretty good fight. I used it for fertilizer, but how do they taste in the frying pan?


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GSF and bluegill have a very similar meat texture and flavor. Quite good, both of them. You get a little meatier fillet from a GSF compared to a BG.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 06/29/15 05:28 PM.

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Well, I've, my kids actually, have continued to catch GSF with the minnow traps and we have removed several hundred of them so far. They have been enjoying the journey as they are catching varying sizes of GSF just about every other cast...if nothing else they are having fun and that's the reason I built the pond in the first place.

We have caught some pure GSF (pics in above posts) and also some of these other hybrid's as I'd call them as they have different markings on them.








Last edited by Huntmaster; 07/27/15 03:18 PM.

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After fishing the pond pretty heavy for the past month or so, for the first time last night we caught three of these. Look like BH's to me. Surprised that this is the first time we caught any.






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Yep. BH. BH have straight tails, CC have forked tails.

Hey! You got a pond just like mine! GSF and Bh's

You likely will start seeing BH fry soon, depending on where you live. I had three big black balls of them out in my old pond this last week. Last year the balls of BH fry hugged the banks and I actually dip netted a bunch of them out. This year they seem to be out in open water. That may be because I have a half dozen LMB in the 12"-16" range and did not when the BH spawn was last year.

Once the BH fry get a couple inches long and get away from the protection of the male BH, you will also start trapping them in the minnow traps. You can trap BH up to about 4" long in the minnow trap. They will need some bait to lure them in though.

Keep up with the GSF trapping and catching. You can make a difference. I thinned a bunch out last year and the ones I missed are now in the 5" range. Been pulling some of them out by hook and line. Catching about 50-50 GSF to BG ratio now so I know I'm making progress.

Me personally, I would return the good looking hybrids. But that is just me. They are some of the best fighting sunfish in the pond. I actually returned a 8" GSF to the pond after catching it. Just looked like too nice of a fish. I want to see how big it will get. That and I've been hanging around Dave Davidson too much........... grin He likes those greenies!

A regular fish trap will trap the larger BH's pretty well. The main problem is keeping the little GSF from eating all the bait before the BH get in the trap. I mash up small GSF and put in as bait for the BH, although they really like fish food better.

My intention in my old pond with GSF and BH is to let the BG eventually out reproduce the GSF and the LMB to control the BH recruitment. And the pond will eventually turn around while I enjoy managing the GSF and eating the larger BH that make it past the LMB predation. BH taste pretty good when fed fish food and are young and grow fast.

As I see it, if you just want fun fishing for kids, you don't mind taking some time and some management to turn the pond around, and don't mind feeding a lot of fish that you eventually are going to kill (I kill them and put them back in the pond for CC and BH food), from what I have read you can turn a pond around.

Now if you are wanting to raise trophy fish in record time, GSF and BH might not be a good plan. But I have learned to make lemonade out of the lemons, and they are ok. You will definitely get a lot of line action while fishing with BH and GSF in the pond. grin

You only need to wait about 15 minutes between checking traps. Especially if you bait them with fish food.

Last edited by snrub; 07/27/15 05:24 PM.

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P.S.

I also have a 3 acre pond that DOES NOT have BH and GSF, so I have the luxury of having a pond without those "problems". My GSF and BH are in my old 1 acre pond.

I might view the situation differently if my only pond had the problem.

But if I can't beg a bite in the big pond, I can ALWAYS go and catch something out of the old pond. Those greenies and BH are not afraid to bite a hook.


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Originally Posted By: snrub
As I see it, if you just want fun fishing for kids, you don't mind taking some time and some management to turn the pond around, and don't mind feeding a lot of fish that you eventually are going to kill (I kill them and put them back in the pond for CC and BH food), from what I have read you can turn a pond around.

Now if you are wanting to raise trophy fish in record time, GSF and BH might not be a good plan. But I have learned to make lemonade out of the lemons, and they are ok. You will definitely get a lot of line action while fishing with BH and GSF in the pond. grin


When I caught the first GSF, I was somewhat disappointed knowing it was going to create havoc in the pond. But after watching the kids have all kinds of fun with them, I don't really care that much any more. Now with the bullheads, it looks like it will be a slow process to move the pond forward.


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Since this thread is getting quite long and I'm moving to management mode, I figured I'd start a new thread with a slightly different focus.


My Management Thread

Last edited by Huntmaster; 07/28/15 12:11 PM.

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Huntmaster,
Maybe it's just an iPad quirk, but your link is taking me back to this same page, every time. I had the impression it would take me to a new thread?
Just thought I'd mention it..


8 yr old pond, 1 ac, 15' deep.
RES, YP, GS, FHM (no longer), HBG (going away), SMB, and HSB (didn’t make it. 0 seen in 5 yrs) Restocked HSB (2020) I think we have survivors!
I think that's about all I should put in my little pond.
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Originally Posted By: SetterGuy
Huntmaster,
Maybe it's just an iPad quirk, but your link is taking me back to this same page, every time. I had the impression it would take me to a new thread?
Just thought I'd mention it..


Thanks!

I just fixed it...I copied the wrong page, but it should be working now.


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