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Re: Water tests are back
Bocomo #307621 09/26/12 05:29 PM
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Thanks for the link.

That's annoying that they didn't measure alkalinity! I will request it specifically.

Creel survey
Bocomo #308963 10/12/12 01:31 PM
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16 hours of fishing over the last four days yielded 40 LMB and 10 BG.

LMB:
Biggest: 14.75", 0.83#, WR 49%
Average length: 102 in. Median length: 9 in. Mode length: 8.5 in.
Average RW: 5010 %

BG:
Biggest: 9", 0.5#, WR 83%
Average length: 8.00.6 in. Median length: 8 in. Mode length: 8.25 in.
Average RW: 9010 %

All LMB removed for a total of 14#. All BG released unharmed.

Last edited by Bocomo; 10/12/12 01:38 PM.
Re: Creel survey
Bocomo #309000 10/12/12 11:24 PM
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Keep yanking out LMB, buy or build a seechi disk. Easy to do and also easy to use.

I agree about removing all the catfish you can. They're taking up biomass, and depending on their size, will be eating small BG and other fish.


www.hoosierpondpros.com


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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
Re: Creel survey
Bocomo #309902 10/24/12 09:07 PM
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I'm now up to 95 LMB removed for a total of 34 pounds harvested. The coyotes sneak up to the bank each night to eat their fill...nothing left but a few scales in the morning.

The bass fishing has slowed considerably. I caught the first 60 or so on the same small topwater popper. The next 35 have required a rainbow of small crankbaits and senkos.

I caught a lone green sunfish today, the first of this trip. He's outnumbered in my fishing log by BG at least 30:1 so I don't think they're a problem.

I haven't been able to catch any catfish on stinkbait in several hours of trying. I'm going to try cut bait next. My parents had some work done on their house this year, and their painters did more fishing than painting. They may have pulled out the last of my cats. Good riddance!

Winterkill Worries
Bocomo #324575 03/07/13 03:04 PM
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Three feet below full pool making my max depth only 5' plus ice cover for the past 10 days with 8" of snow on top. I'm guessing it's awfully dark and anoxic down there frown . 100-year drought in Boone County followed by late snowstorms, what terrible luck.

Re: Soil tests are back
Bocomo #324584 03/07/13 04:17 PM
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If the ice is thick enough to walk on and you don't have an aeration system in place and running, shovel off the snow so sunlight can go thru the ice. Or, if you cannot get on the ice to shovel due to safety reasons, can you pump water up on top of the ice to melt some of the snow?

Even an electric dewatering or sump pump hooked to a garden hose. Throw a line across the pond, tie it to the end of the hose and pull it out from shore across the pond as far as you can go or to the middle, whichever comes first. Put the pump where it can suck water but not the bottom muck and start pumping.

What you are describing sounds like similar conditions that resulted in a winterkill last year for a client. (shallow pond, VERY limited sunlight)


www.hoosierpondpros.com


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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
Re: Soil tests are back
Bocomo #324708 03/08/13 02:13 PM
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Good idea re: the sump pump. I should have posted earlier! 51F today and the water's open again. I will consider that for next year especially if our drought doesn't break this year.

Re: Soil tests are back
Bocomo #324930 03/10/13 04:16 PM
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62F and a thunderstorm, with the snowmelt the pond is back at full pool for the first time in a year. Gained 3' of water in a day. Amazing.

Re: Soil tests are back
Bocomo #324931 03/10/13 04:20 PM
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Congrats! Still no rain here. Pond is half melted, the pond only came up 1/2" with the majority of the snow melted. It looks like the rain will only brush us. I'm afraid that this is the pattern that will set up for the whole year.


www.hoosierpondpros.com


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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
First cast of 2013
Bocomo #328227 03/31/13 02:46 PM
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ICE OUT!


Let the skinny bass harvest begin.

Last edited by Bocomo; 04/01/13 12:23 PM.
Creel survey data analysis
Bocomo #331933 04/23/13 05:11 PM
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Time for an update! For those of you just tuning in, I'm trying to balance this old 2.2 acre, bass-heavy farm pond by use of selective harvest. Last fall, I did a creel survey and harvest with the goal of removing as many bass as possible. I pulled out 115 LMB for a total of 40# removed. I surveyed the BG last year and their WRs were all 80% and relatively large (and all were returned to the pond), again consistent with the classic bass-heavy, under-harvested pond.

After a few days of fishing this spring, I've pulled out an additional 91 LMB worth 29# for a total of 206 LMB and 69# over the last six months. I did not survey the BG yet this year.

I recorded the weight and length of nearly all the fish during both sessions and here are some charts to help display the data:

This is a summary graph that shows all the fish in both the Fall '12 and the Spring '13 surveys. The '12 fish are in blue, and the '13 fish are in green. The x-axis shows the length of the fish, and the y-axis shows its relative weight. There are a few things I noticed about the distribution of the data in this 'raw' form.

The first thing I noticed was the bent rainbow shape to the distribution. The shortest fish have the worst RWs and the fish around 12" have the best RWs. As the fish get larger than 12" the RW falls again. The best explanation that I have for this is that the smallest fish are the most crowded -- the five-inchers won't take a lure very often, but those that do must have lots and lots of competition in their class. My guess is that the RWs improve for the larger fish because there are fewer of them in that size class, and then the RW falls again for the very long fish because of inadequate forage.

The next thing I noticed is that most of the green (2013) dots are higher than the corresponding blue (2012) dots at the same fish length. This suggests that the fish are in slightly better condition this year. It's possible this is a result of the harvest the year prior, but I'm guessing it reflects the fact that the fish I'm catching now are pre-spawn.

The last thing that jumps out at me is that most of the fish are between 8" and 9", and most of the RWs of those fish are in the 40% range. I think this is the size where most of the fish stunt and stop growing.

The following charts attempt to illustrate these trends in a way that's easier to comprehend graphically.

Here is the original Fall 2012 creel survey depicted as a combined histogram showing the number of fish caught in each length class as well as the average RW of the fish in each length class. Note how the average RW of the fish in each class improves as the fish get larger.

Here is this year's creel survey. The same RW trend is present. Also note how there are relatively fewer of the large fish, but those that are present (>12") approach 100% RW. The 8" fish class dominates the data set.

This chart shows the percent change in RW from 2012 to 2013. The RW of fish in every class except the smallest one increased. Again, I think this is likely to be a result of this year's fish being pre-spawn vs. last year's post-spawn fish.

Any thoughts or suggestions? Even though some of the 12" fish are posting ~100% RWs, my impulse is still to keep pulling them out. I hope I will see some continued improvement in WRs when I survey again in the fall.




Here's a pic that shows just how many LMB my cousin and I pulled out in about three hours this week (30+!). There's also one BG in there that didn't survive the catch & release we did with about 29 of his friends over the same time period.

Survey data album

Last edited by Bocomo; 06/26/13 02:06 AM.
New pond record: 4# LMB (pics)
Bocomo #338287 06/07/13 04:43 PM
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So the neighbor's son came over to do some fishing today...and wouldn't you know he caught a 4# LMB. Length estimate 20", which puts the RW at around 90%. Not bad for post spawn.

I had no idea there were any fish of this size in the pond. I mean, I haven't caught one this big in almost 100 hrs of fishing...

Last edited by Bocomo; 06/25/13 10:52 PM.
Re: New pond record: 4# LMB (pics)
Bocomo #340766 06/25/13 08:00 AM
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You want to find out how big a bass you've got in your BOW? Just let someone that's never fished it come give it a try. Works every time.

I fished our farm pond on my parent's place heavily for 15 years - caught a LOT of fish, but the biggest LMB was 5 lbs. Caught several in that class but nothing bigger.

I leave for the military in February years ago, a neighbor kid comes over in March and in his first session about 15 minutes in catches a 9 1/2 lb LMB. Biggest ever out of that pond to my knowledge. Big old hog.

Figures.


Dale



"When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water." - anonymous
Re: New pond record: 4# LMB (pics)
Bocomo #340897 06/25/13 09:21 PM
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This is a great thread! I have to start keeping better data, you have inspired me!


Get out and fish.
Nieces gone fishing
Bocomo #347059 08/12/13 08:56 PM
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My brother went fishing for awhile this weekend with his wife and two daughters. They did pretty well!


Re: Nieces gone fishing
Bocomo #347098 08/13/13 09:17 AM
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Very nice work on the data/charts. Fish condition seems to be improving.
















Re: Nieces gone fishing
Bocomo #347100 08/13/13 09:20 AM
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See below. This may help or provide ideas. Frank has shown this which is a good improving RW situation




Read this thread on PSD for guidelines which include comments from the Prof who developed the concept Richard Anderson.

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=23612&page=1

Dick Anderson - he created the concept of PSD.

"Keep taking <12 in bass until the number 8-12 equals number 12-15. Ideal pond structure is 40% 8-12, 40% 12-15 and 20% 15+ "



Last edited by ewest; 08/13/13 09:31 AM.















Re: Nieces gone fishing
Bocomo #347387 08/14/13 10:10 PM
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Thanks for the comments and advice!

Yes, the fish condition appears to be improving at least by visual inspection. I will be doing a fall creel survey to confirm. We have noticed a pretty extensive fluke infestation. I would love to get some RES of the appropriate size to try to take care of it. I think we'll probably have to cage some and pellet feed in order to do it right.

Hah, we still have a long way to go with maybe only about 10% in the 12-15 category and less than 1% 15+! And as far as getting the size classes the right size for a balanced pond goes, I'm a little worried that a creel survey won't get the job done. I'm concerned about getting a representative sample with rod and reel.

We have re-confirmed the fact that LMB prefer prey of the appropriate size -- changing the size of the lure we use changes the average size of the fish that we catch. The 9" weaklings love 1/16 oz. chartreuse Rooster Tails, the 12" cruisers like 3" or 4" senkos or 4" worms, and the pond boss 4-pounder (see above) was caught with a gigantic spinnerbait.

I suppose fishing with live BG from 2"-4" would be the best bet to make sure we're sampling the entire population?

Last edited by Bocomo; 08/14/13 10:31 PM.
What happens when you Esshup-ize cattails
Bocomo #350707 09/12/13 11:48 AM
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The cattail stand on our puddle had grown too big for its britches. So we zapped it using the Esshup Recipe (thanks Esshup!) and this is what happened smile

Very happy with the result.


Creel survey, 2012-2013
Bocomo #352118 09/27/13 11:50 AM
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We finally had some time to go fishing this fall. We collected this data set over four days of fishing in probably about 30 angler-hours. The catch rate has dropped dramatically and the fish condition has obviously improved quite a bit. There were quite a few YOY LMB we could see around the brush piles, but not a single BG fingerling was seen. Still too bass-crowded.

The fishing was good on three of the four days which were breezy, sunny, and about 78F. On the third night, a cold front came through and dropped an inch of rain which really put a damper on the action.

The fish were holding tight to the cover we had placed around the dock last fall. 4" Senkos worked slowly through the brush piles worked best. A few fish were also taken on rattletraps and diving crankbaits. Topwater action produced only the smallest LMB, possibly YOYs.

We still cranked out enough for a survey and a fish fry! I'm very happy to say that thanks to you guys, we have dramatically improved the median RW. We still have a long way to go, but at least now our LMB will have plenty to eat.

"This old pond" project update:

Spring 2013 creel survey results:
LMB removed: 40
Weight removed: 28#

2012-2013 totals:
Size of pond: 2.2 acres
Starting Median LMB RW, Fall 2012: 0.51
Ending Median LMB RW, Spring 2013: 0.97
Number LMB removed: 246
Weight of LMB removed: 97#






Last edited by Bocomo; 09/30/13 03:07 PM.
Fish Fry!
Bocomo #352155 09/27/13 05:39 PM
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Delicious!





Last edited by Bocomo; 09/27/13 05:41 PM.
Re: Fish Fry!
Bocomo #352158 09/27/13 06:00 PM
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I often have to neglect to tell people they are eating "bass" at my fish frys..
Bass if very good, !!!!
They love it every time!


Goofing off is a slang term for engaging in recreation or an idle pastime while obligations of work or society are neglected........... Wikipedia
Help with proportional size distribution
Bocomo #352403 09/30/13 05:13 PM
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It would appear that we are approaching the ideal PSD that you described -- 50%<12", 50%>12".

What should my next move be? The median WR is 0.97. Should I keep indiscriminately harvesting? Should I selectively harvest individuals with poor WR? Should I use a slot?

Last edited by Bocomo; 09/30/13 05:26 PM.
Re: Help with proportional size distribution
Bocomo #352419 09/30/13 07:14 PM
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Harvest the fish in the range that is over represented and concentrate on the fish that look skinny. Leave those in the best condition. Keep in mind that RW has some large swings over the year in its merit. Just after the spawn and near the end of a long summer LMB will show marked condition reductions.

Those LMB look good.

BTW nice work on the data collection.

Last edited by ewest; 09/30/13 07:14 PM.















Re: Help with proportional size distribution
Bocomo #352426 09/30/13 09:00 PM
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What you use to kill those cat tails?

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