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#399819 02/03/15 11:17 PM
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we have sourced a creek to trap them out of of, but not in very consistant numbers. I hope to get them established in some forage ponds. Reading through the old threads it sounds like the same spawning habitat for walleye does the trick for STS? One report says that STS will spawn on FA. I guess we will see and I will try to keep you posted.

Any one with experience with Spottails please chime in.

CJ I see you have a few.


On a side note and maybe a different thread, to target larger shiners especially when fatheads are present, would a trap with larger mesh still catch enough rather than the standard 1/4 inch??


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What is the benefit of this species if they share the same reproductive tendencies as walleye, likely never successfully spawning in a small pond?

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I have a handful of ponds WE reproduce in. But I think the young get ate pretty quick so a forage species sharing their habitat should help recruitment. Plus they get larger than fatheads and should last longer in a pond.

Also for selling minnows as bait or stocking for forage in other areas they are easier to get out of ponds than creeks. Not to mention personal bait use.


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fishm-n - You are correct. Not a lot of research has been reported about spawning details of spottail shiners (Notropis hudsonius) despite their being pretty common in the northern half of the US. Most of the literature that I have indicates similar to your findings that most reports indicate spawning occurs in stream like conditions or areas similar to where walleye spawn; rocky wind swept shore areas.

Those interested do need a lot more information on this topic. Spottails are common in large lakes. I think some bait dealers and Univ Extension agents tried to get them and emeralds shiners to spawn in some ponds near southern Lk Erie, Ohio area with little success. They were pretty successful in pond spawning the spotfin shiner Cyprinella spilopterus which are similar silvery appearance and size to the spottail and emerald shiners. I think most shiner species in the Cyprinella genus will spawn in ponds since they spawn in cracks and crevices of stream or pond habitats.

I hope you have good luck with trying the get your local spottail shiners to pond spawn. Your experiences will be very good information to have on this forum. Make sure you have some stringy algae or similar preferred habitat in the ponds for spawning substrates. Moving water from a water falls or pump-hose will likely help your success of the spawning and egg hatch. Forum member DonoBBD from Canada has had success getting common shiners (Notropis cornutus) to spawn in his small pond that has a water falls that creates a current.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 02/04/15 07:50 PM.

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I stocked a few hundred spottail shiners into a 0.34 acre mostly mud/detritus bottomed pond. They're very easy to capture in volume when they make their spring spawning runs in the local rivers. I never had any sign of them reproducing. I've also stocked them into other ponds up to 4 acres in size with no signs of reproduction. The 0.34 acre pond I've studied very closely. The shiners can survive, as large adults do show up in seine surveys and minnow traps. Apparently their spawning requirements aren't met by most ponds.

The species I've focused on is the eastern silvery minnow. It sometimes shows up mixed in with the spottail shiners during their spring spawning runs but in lower numbers. It spawns very differently though. I have had two excellent back to back spawns the past two springs in the 0.34 acre pond. I really like this species as it gets larger than most, commonly to 5" and it spawns very early in the season and is quite prolific. They were studied as a food source for Esox species YOY in hatcheries because of these attributes. Now that both HSB and SMB have been stocked into the pond, I'll be seeing how they hold up to predation.

Eastern silvery minnows have several close relatives found throughout North America that may also be good pond forage candidates.

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Thanks CJ.


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There is a Western Silvery Minnow. Its habits are probably very similar to the Eastern Silvery Minnow. The western silvery minnow is not thriving in many of the western states and Canada probably due to declining habitat and inability to tolerate degraded habitats. I suspect it does not spawn too successfully in pond type habitats or it would be a lot more abundant where ever it occurs. The following are more reading materials about the silvery minnows.

Silvery Minnow group
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hybognathus

WESTERN SILVERY MINNOW
http://www.npwrc.usgs.gov/resource/wildlife/nddanger/species/hyboargy.htm
Distribution description
http://www.fs.fed.us/r2/projects/scp/evalrationale/rationales/fishes/westernsilveryminnow.pdf
In Illinois
https://books.google.com/books?id=KvAuH-...now&f=false

In Iowa
http://maps.gis.iastate.edu/iris/fishatlas/IA163362.html

Not doing well in Kansas
http://www.gpnc.org/wsminnow.htm

At risk In Alberta
http://www.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/species-especes/species-especes/sminnow-menea-p-eng.htm

MISSISSIPPI SILVERY MINNOW probably spawns in a similar way as the other western and eastern silvery minnows
Mississippi silvery minnows spawn in early summer by scattering eggs over a soft organic mud bottom. They do not defend territories and provide no parental care for the eggs or young. Info from this link:
http://wildlife.ohiodnr.gov/species-and-habitats/species-guide-index/fish/mississippi-silvery-minnow

Last edited by Bill Cody; 02/05/15 10:18 AM.

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Would the eastern variety be a good variety for other PB members to experiment with in their small forage ponds? I think some enterprising PB member who has success could do well by then selling them in small quanitites to others who would like to raise them as a potential forage fish in their ponds?

I know of a few doing specialty fish grow outs and sales for small volume sales via FedEx shipment rather than truck shipment and it seems to go well.

Of course small volume sales would work only in ponds where there are no predators and where a few fish could potentially turn into hundreds and then be relocated.

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I think a few other forage minnows not available from fish farms, and more commonly available from the wild, and more prolific and better pond habitat spawners would be more productive than the silvery minnows. Species such as bluntnose minnow (BNM), spotfin shiner, satinfin shiner, steelcolor shiner and the lake chubsucker (LCS). Other borderline species I think that would still be easier to produce than silvery minnows would be blacktail shiner, red shiner, brassy minnow, bullhead minnow. The BNM and bullhead minnows spawn very similar to the fathead minnow. Thus they would be good pond species. Plus you want to choose a species that is fairly tolerant of a wide range of pond conditions from clear to turbid to lower DO.

http://www.env.gov.bc.ca/wld/documents/fishfacts/brassyminnow.pdf
http://fieldguide.mt.gov/speciesDetail.aspx?elcode=AFCJB16020


Last edited by Bill Cody; 12/13/19 08:02 PM.

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Thanks Bill. I assume bigger fish farms and fish haul outfits can't break down their minnow offerings to all the different species you describe above. Outside of catching in the wild, are you aware of outfits that are trying to create larger populations of the BNM, spotfins, etc that they eventually could sell to those of us interested in creating our own sustainable populations?

I think Brian Zimmerman was trying this with a variety of species and I was curious if others were.

minnows are apparently fairly tolerant of the shipping process and it seems like a great start up business opportunity.

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The availability of these uncommon minnows and shiners is not even a small scale or sporadic commercial occurrence. No fish farms are doing it that I know of and the field is IMO wide open to a creative retired person or as a side family type business. Demand is low and profit is probably low due to them not being popular. Todd Overton tried raising lake chubsuckers for one year. He evidently concluded they were too much effort and too low of profit to continue growing LCS.


I think these uncommon minnows and shiners make very good forage fish in some of the specialty fisheries of non LMbass predator communities such as yellow perch, walleye, HSB, HBG, maybe SMB, maybe crappie, and other uncommon pan fishes. Some of these shiners will grow to 4"-6.5" long and as a group are better at avoiding predation and thrive better and live longer than the fathead minnow. With adequate refuge habitat these forage fish species will maintain populations long term in pond settings without LMbass.

A second dealer of uncommon fish is:
http://jonahsaquarium.com/index.htm
Wouldn't his be a neat 4"-5" shiner to have as a forage fish in a yellow perch - walleye pond?
http://jonahsaquarium.com/JonahSite/piccpyrrhomelas02.htm
Or how about this shiner?
http://jonahsaquarium.com/JonahSite/picinctrichroistia.htm
Special Order fish
http://jonahsaquarium.com/JonahSite/fishlistoccasional.htm

Both of these shiners I think could be raised in ponds similar to the spotfin and several other Cyprinella shiners. Cyprinella genus of shiners lay eggs in crevices of logs and rocks.

There are a few mom & pop fish guys that are raising the spotfin shiner in Ohio as a bait fish for Lake Erie anglers when emerald shiners are scarce during perch angling season.
http://wildlife.ohiodnr.gov/species-and-habitats/species-guide-index/fish/spotfin-shiner
http://gallery.nanfa.org/v/members/dsmith73/minnows/cyprinella/Spotfin+shiner.jpg.html
http://www.roughfish.com/spotfin-shiner

There is one local guy near me in NW Ohio that raises spotfins for bait and pond stocking.

The steelcolor shiner (6.3") gets a little larger than the spotfin shiner (4.8").
http://wildlife.ohiodnr.gov/species-and-habitats/species-guide-index/fish/steelcolor-shiner

Last edited by Bill Cody; 02/05/15 02:54 PM.

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Time to break out the minnow trap and hit the creeks around here this spring. I just checked

http://wwx.inhs.illinois.edu/collections/fish/data/ichthyology/ilfish/

and both Bluntnose and Spotfin are supposed to be in our local waters.


Edit: Hmmm...maybe I am jumping the gun a little. Perhaps I should build the forage pond before I stock it! laugh

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Here is a resource I found that shows lots of different minnow as well as other species for Kansas. Did not check if other states were available. Unbelievable how many different minnows there are.

Fish of Kansas

Edit: I would not put too much faith in the ranges they show for the fish. They show rainbow trout over most of the state, and I think a person could fish his whole life in most of the state and never catch a rainbow trout. Lots of other fish ranges I question also. They also show the orangespotted and longear sunfishes in most of Kansas, checked USGS site and they also said they are native to my area. Didn't know that either.

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I agree with you Snrub. The only way to tell what's actually living in the waters near you is to check it out with a trap, seine, etc. and see what you can catch.


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They do well in tanks as far as growing them, but never went further than that. Not nearly aggressive as the Emerald toward others tho.

It was fun messing with this stuff a while back, but age is setting in.

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Originally Posted By: JKB
They do well in tanks as far as growing them, but never went further than that. Not nearly aggressive as the Emerald toward others tho.

It was fun messing with this stuff a while back, but age is setting in.


JKB,

I know what you mean about the age thing. Wish I had started this 30 years ago!

Anyway, My wife and I love to fish rivers and streams cause you never know what you might hang into. On the Kishwaukee River could be most anything including a couple of drunk teenagers on a raft! grin I figure I will carry a trap along and soak it while we are fishing. If we catch anything I want in the trap, I will keep them and toss them in the main pond and remember where I caught them when I get serious about stocking the forage pond. Ahh...maybe I will write down where I caught them...memory is another thing that's not so reliable anymore! grin


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Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
The availability of these uncommon minnows and shiners is not even a small scale or sporadic commercial occurrence. No fish farms are doing it that I know of and the field is IMO wide open to a creative retired person or as a side family type business.


Bill,

I am curious, how hard is it to start up a small business to fill that kind of niche? A lot of hoops to jump thru?

Bill D.


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""..how hard is it to start up a small business to fill that kind of niche? A lot of hoops to jump thru?"" First thing you will probably need for the small business is a bait dealers license to sell within the state. Your state may have a fish raising permit for commercial sales. Check your DNR website for local regulations. A state vendor's license is probably needed for charging sales tax.


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Bill, would the people near you ship spotfins to me in Michigan?

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canyoncreek- I doubt they would ship them since they are not set up for shipping. He might meet you part way or why not drive to get them? They would haul easily in a large tub, garbage can or several buckets depending on how many you want. Place a large plastic bag or two in the container and tie it closed to keep water from splashing all over in your vehicle. It would be very best to haul fish in cooler 50-65F water temps of April or early May. He lives near Stryker OH if you want to determine the mileage.


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Thanks Bill, I'll look into it.

I see you can order pretty much anything from Jonah's aquarium, even large fish (muskie, walleye, sauger) Any idea how he can maintain access to all these types of minnows and the larger fish year around?

would love to source some steelcolor shiners too!

Dumb question but do the FHM cross breed with shiners or do the many types of shiners crossbreed with each other to hybridize? I have GSH and wondered what would happen if I added spotfin or steelcolor etc

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Spotfins from the NW Ohio guy will be very cheap (0.10ea) compared to Jonah, so the drive to pick them up would be worthwhile. I doubt Jonah ships fish in winter. I think many of his fish are wild caught and only a few at a time. I have talked to him about sourcing some fish for me.

Some hybridizing of shiners and minnows occurs but it is pretty rare in most cases because the fish have specific or unique breeding habits. FHM rarely hybridize due to the unique spawning locations. FYI- the Univ of Michigan has a whole room full of preserved hybrid fish specimens. I spent a month there sorting fish specimens as a winter term project when I was in college.

Comparing spotfin & steelcolor shiners, I think I would prefer steelcolor shiners due to their larger adult size, but I cannot source them locally.

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Bounced around MI to check out paperwork. First off, not on the approved list, so you won't find a fish farm or big bait operation that could supply these.

Private wild caught would be your best option in MI.

I kinda like the N. Redbelly Dace.

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As is the current rule for obtaining most of these uncommon fish for your sport fishery, be prepared to go out and use a seine, drop net, and/or fish traps in your local creeks, back water areas or small lake to collect your own brood stock. It may even involve traveling a few hours to get to a stream that is known to contain your desired species. Many small streams can be easily seined. You will often be surprised at what you will catch with a few pulls of a small 6-8ft seine through the pool of a small stream or creek. If you have a new pond or a designated forage fish pond, you will only need a few to several individuals to get your breeding population started.

When my family used to go to Canada fishing each year the camp owner collected all his bait minnows with numerous traps set in local streams. I used a couple traps and a drop net in the lake we fished to easily catch additional bait minnows. If the minnows are living in the lake, there is a good chance it hatched there as an egg and the adults can reproduce in the pond habitat.

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Bill,
So when you say a few to several, is this in an aquarium/bucket type environment or the "no fish currently" pond environment? Will ~10 minnows/shiners of a specific species be able to establish a strong population in a 1 acre pond void of any fish? I understand more is better but how long would it take to establish the population with 10 or so fish?



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I am not a pro, but IMHO I would think if you want to start with only 10 fish, I would try to isolate them into a much smaller area than a 1 acre pond for two reasons. One to assure the fish successfully find a mate. The second so you possibly don't have to wait a long time to know if they successfully spawned as you will be able to observe progress much more effectively.

Edit: Thought I should maybe explain my thinking a little more on my reason two. When I stocked 300+ FHM to my pond, they were the first fish into a brand new pond. It was not what I expected. I was thinking I would see a school or two of minnows in the shallow water as I walked around the pond. Wrong. They disappeared. In retrospect, I am guessing in the absence of predators, they were comfortable in deeper water and did not need to seek the safety of the shallow water.

I did not know whether they were all dead or not until I built a bunch of what I call "Flintstone houses" (Based on the old TV show)in a foot or so of water. My "Flintstone houses" consisted of 3 round rocks placed in a triangle pattern with a flat rock on top for the roof. I had not found PBF yet so this was my feeble attempt at creating spawning habitat. Two or three days later my FHM appeared. Pretty much every house had a male inhabitant. With only 10 fish in a 1 acre pond, it could be months before you know whether you are successful if they stay in a little bit deeper water.

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Ben A. 10 shiners of spotfin or steelcolor and/or bluntnose minnows in a 1 acre pond without predators will find each other to spawn and recruit young fish. These are schooling fish so all survivors will hang out together. 10 survivors of about 50:50 male and female mix will easily produce several thousand youngsters that without predators will grow fast due to excess food and low competition. I produced a pond full of spotfins from 12-16 adults. Spotfins are prolific and lay eggs over the entire summer. If you can get 10 fish to survive you will be surprised at how many you will have after a summer of minnow reproduction. Note the spotfin and steelcolor shiners need special spawning substrates with cracks and crevices to lay their eggs. If you provide these artificial structures you can easily monitor the egg laying process by periodically examining the spawning devices. Bluntnose minnows spawn the same as FHM so similar habitat is required. PM me if you need more information about building spawning structure for the shiners.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 02/07/15 09:51 PM.

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Good info Bill. I have had a question lurking in the back of my mind for a while and this seems like a good place to ask the question. With only 10 fish to start, is there and issue with gene pool for future generations with all the inbreeding that is bound to occur?


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I started the banded killifish in the 0.34 acre pond I referred to with 8 fish. I now have thousands. The eastern silvery minnows were started with 15. I now have thousands.

Eastern silvery minnows appear to be far more tolerant of habitat extremes as compared to their western relative. They are also closely related to the brassy minnow.

See these links:

http://www.nanfa.org/captivecare/hybognathus.shtml

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showgallery&Number=257884

I specifically set out to collect eastern silvery minnows after finding research showing their possibility as a pond candidate. I was able to catch 6 adults in August of 2011. I caught 9 more adults in April of 2012 and 27 YOY in August of that year. They were transferred to the pond. I first observed signs of reproduction in 2013 and had a huge spawn last year.

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Originally Posted By: Bill D.
Good info Bill. I have had a question lurking in the back of my mind for a while and this seems like a good place to ask the question. With only 10 fish to start, is there and issue with gene pool for future generations with all the inbreeding that is bound to occur?


FWIW I have been digging thru old threads about inbreeding and really didn't find a definitive answer for how many fish is a minimum you should use to start a population with an adequate gene pool. Seems there was some agreement that starting with just 1 pair is probably not a good idea. Starting with a few pairs was "it depends." If all the fish came from the same 2 parents or from multiple parents seemed to carry some weight in the discussion but no conclusions were drawn that I could find.


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Obviously the more breeding pairs that the population has the more genetic variation that will occur. One may never see deterioration of the population in one's lifetime. Also remember we are not trying to produce trophy class shiners or minnows. From my experience it will take many generations for genetic abnormalities to occur when starting with about a dozen adult fish.

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CJ all I was able to find on the banded killifish was they like turbid water and i assumed they would be a poor choice for a pond fish. They are pretty and would be fun to be have a source for, I will love to try and establish some.

I have sourced some western silvery's too.

But I like the size of the spottails and hope I can get them established.


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Banded killifish like turbid waters? Where'd you get that information from?

The banded killifish has two subspecies. The eastern which I have and the western which I have no experience with. My research has shown that the western is actually very susceptible to degradation in water quality, including sedimentation. They don't handle turbidity well. The eastern subspecies is far more tolerant to sedimentation but doesn't prefer it. Because of this tolerance, the eastern subspecies which has been introduced into the western subspecies' range is colonizing new areas and out competing the native western subspecies. Fairly strange in that little hybridization is being observed...

In the wild I generally collect banded killifish in the vegetated backwaters of generally clear medium to large rivers. I know of a few clear lakes that have them as well. If anything they seek out clear water. If it's rained and the main river is muddy, I'll see them concentrated in the cleaner clear flowing mouths of small feeder streams. The pond I have them in generally stays clear, but will muddy during exceptionally heavy rain. One inflow area is always clear and the killies concentrate heavily here.

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Stumbled on this on the web. What can someone tell me about this type of shiner 'spotfin shiner' or spottail or are these the same thing?

neat video. And it says they were obtained from the black river in Holland not far from me. Maybe I can seine or minnow trap some.. Come warmer water and weather...

Spotfin shiner spawning

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They are different. Spottails have a spot at the base of the tail and are silver. Spotfin have a blue tint and blotch in spot or spots on the dorsal find or rather the one in the middle of there back.


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The biggest difference is I know where to get spottails. But I don't think there are spotfin in my state


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Apparently the spotfin live in the northern states in the wild and survive. I wonder what temperatures they tolerate in a pond with no moving water...

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Spotfin do not prefer a pond habitat, but can adapt to it. If you construct spawning structures for them to spawn in, they'll keep their numbers up better. Suitable spawning sights are an issue in ponds for spotfins. They are crevice spanners. In rivers, currents help keep the crevices in rocks, logs, etc from filling in. In ponds, these crevices get silted in and this becomes a limiting factor in their success.

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My pond gets over 95 degrees in the summer with no moving water. Both my spotfins and closely related satinfin shiners do fine.

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Quote:
The biggest difference is I know where to get spottails. But I don't think there are spotfin in my state.


Does your state have red shiners? They are same genus (Cyprinella) as spotfins and likely will spawn in similar habitats. Literature says they are tolerant of numerous conditions and tolerate suspended silt. Spawning is variable and not quite as specific as most of the other Cyprinella species. Pond spawning should be possible since they reportedly scatter eggs over similar areas as GSH and also in crevices. Sometimes one has to make a road trip to an area known for the species to probably do some self collecting. Sometimes you might be able contact local bait shops where the species occurs and buy some of them from the bait shop.

Some of the distribution maps show red shiners extending up into south central North Dakota. One may have to take a long weekend vacation to a place that sells red shiners as bait fish.
http://ninnescahlife.wichita.edu/node/367

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Generally the numbers of eggs that hatch and survive to mature adults is strongly dependent on the amount of competition of the same species and predators. In a fish empty pond, several to a few dozen healthy reproducing adults can quickly populate a one acre pond with thousands of individuals. This assumes the adults minnow specie is "normally" prolific as far as true minnows are concerned in the minnow family - Cyprinidae. My experience is - survival of fry is highly dependent on amount of competition present. I've raised in one season, thousands of spotfins from a 'handful' of spotfin adults in an 0.3 ac pond with no other species present except 40-50 bluntnose (BNM).

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Thanks for bringing this up, Bill!
For those reading this Bill is helping me with an experiment of my own with Red & Spotfin shiner and bluntnose minnow.
After a "fair" amount of research I've found that all 3 of these species are available but it's mostly dealers for the aquarium hobbyist and they are EXPENSIVE.
BUT...If one has a forage pond of any sort, I believe-from what I can find- the red shiner will play just fine with spotfin and bluntnose.
My research on SPOT TAIL shiner suggest they will not "prosper" in a closed system or small pond. They seem to have very similar traits to that of emerald shiner. That does not mean they won't reproduce but my findings suggest with predators present they won't last long, so I chose the 3 species listed above to go with my GSH FHM and Gams I have present in pond. I'm starting cultures of all 3 with hopes of getting reproduction in the new forage pond. I've placed several pairs in my 60 gal aquarium and hope to observe some behavior patterns at the least. My red shiner males have started to color up as my timed light passed through roughly 11 hrs 30 min. I'm increasing 5 min of light every 3rd day to 'mimic" photo period. I am able to determine females in all 3 species now and with the Red shiner, the Males were obvious first.
Should be fun if nothing else!

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Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
I've raised in one season, thousands of spotfins from a 'handful' of spotfin adults in an 0.3 ac pond with no other species present except 40-50 bluntnose (BNM).


What kept the BNMs from similarly proliferating and then outcompeting the spotfins?

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Originally Posted By: CJBS2003
I now have thousands. The eastern silvery minnows were started with 15. I now have thousands.

Eastern silvery minnows appear to be far more tolerant of habitat extremes as compared to their western relative. They are also closely related to the brassy minnow.

See these links:

http://www.nanfa.org/captivecare/hybognathus.shtml

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showgallery&Number=257884

I specifically set out to collect eastern silvery minnows after finding research showing their possibility as a pond candidate. I was able to catch 6 adults in August of 2011. I caught 9 more adults in April of 2012 and 27 YOY in August of that year. They were transferred to the pond. I first observed signs of reproduction in 2013 and had a huge spawn last year.


I am interested in these Eastern Silvery Minnows. They sound like a very good candidate for a trout pond. Bigger than fatheads, but not as "aggressive" as Golden Shiners. Plus, they eat algae!

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Originally Posted By: Snipe
I'm starting cultures of all 3 with hopes of getting reproduction in the new forage pond. I've placed several pairs in my 60 gal aquarium and hope to observe some behavior patterns at the least. My red shiner males have started to color up as my timed light passed through roughly 11 hrs 30 min. I'm increasing 5 min of light every 3rd day to 'mimic" photo period. I am able to determine females in all 3 species now and with the Red shiner, the Males were obvious first.
Should be fun if nothing else!


Nice work !!! Be sure to match photoperiod to proper water temps to encourage reproduction. FishBase may have info on these species preferred reproduction temps.
















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ewest, here's one of my "Cody shiner discs"..


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Sweet!


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Quote:
What kept the BNMs from similarly proliferating and then out competing the spotfins?

saint_a these two species have different a niche thus direct competition is not real significant. Thus for me, both reproduced almost equally to put the pond at carrying capacity; almost a poly- culture thing.

snipe pull out our spawning device and measure the distance between the disks. They look too far apart. You want spacing to be 3-4-5mm (about 1/8"-3/16" no bigger) Your spacing looks to be 1/4" or more. Too wide of spacing and you will get few if any eggs. Spotfins are fussy. I suggest for your aquarium project add a couple more disks at the narrow spacing and see which spacing the shiner prefer. Let them educate you!

REMINDER - To those reading this thread; spottail shiner and spotfin shiner are two completely and entirely different species with very different spawning habits. Don't confuse them.

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snipe,
When I made my stacks of old CDs I bought the smallest diameter of all thread rod that they kept at the hardware (looking online it was 1/4" course thread. I used a 1/4" course thread nut that matches to hold the stack of disks at top and bottom.
In between the CDs I used I believe 2 thin washers stacked to try to achieve that 1/8" spacing. The washers have to be big enough to not fit through the hole in the middle of the CD and you also need some pressure from the nuts top and bottom to compress things so the CDs stay rigid. I can't recall for sure but probably got 1/4" washers (meaning inside diameter of the hole was just right to fit over the all thread and the outside diameter was 5/8".
Online it says those washers are usually 1.5 to 2mm thick, which means I'm pretty sure I used 2 of these stacked between each CD.
I made the all thread rod about 3' long with the CD stack right at the top. I found it easy to push these into the bottom of my pond and pull them back out again in the fall. I pulled them out to power wash them every fall as they silt in pretty easily and it is also fun to see how many sticky egg remnants are on the CDs or in between them.
I found that how far the CD 'tower' is off the bottom and simultaneously how far it is under the surface mattered a bit too. Mine were bottom mounted, most people hange them off the edge of a dock. Not sure which is best.

I used some plastic cardboard stacks too thinking that the natural holes on the endgrain of the cardboard would be perfect for the shiners but when powerwashing I saw very little use of these stacks. I wonder if part of it might be that they were square pieces rather than curved pieces and also the cardboard flexes so the gap between the layers of cardboard changes alot, which is unlike natural crevices which don't give or open and close with time.

An old post somewhere suggests using the plastic ring that is left behind when you screw off the plastic cap of a gatorade bottle, water bottle, or plastic gallon milk jug cap as a spacer. A good idea!

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I put them at "exactly" 3/16" per your instructions..I can sure tighten them a hair to 1/8". In fact there are some eggs already on the back side, they're using it as of this am, but it's the spotfins and not the RSH as I expected.
I should back up... the Red shiner use technics similar to GSH but will also lay eggs in BG/GSF/RES nests too and I've found some literature that suggests they will (at times) also spawn in crevices.

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I used 2 washers between on this one, I have 3 disc structures in tank but this is the only 1 so far with eggs and as you can see it's closer to bottom than the other 2.

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how far in do the eggs go in between the disks would you say? I'm always curious how they 'shoot' the eggs way in the crevice or if in a deep crevice like you have between your disks if the eggs stay right at the opening?

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1/4-1/2"???
I see there are some (very small group) right on the edge now that weren't there this am.

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great info! I wonder how they get the eggs that far in between the disks and how they stick or embed in there? I wonder if they tip sideways and wedge their bodies into the crevice, or maybe they back their tail into there?

time to set up a webcam to capture the action smile

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Lit suggests the female rolls each individual egg with her body and pushes it into crevice.. I can't confirm because I haven't been able to catch them. Guessing right now it's an early am thing?

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Originally Posted By: canyoncreek


time to set up a webcam to capture the action smile


Guys have done time for less, sicko!


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Learning/schooling is in full session today..
Been raising temp 1/2-1 deg per day from 69 (room temp) to 75 today. Light on 12hr 43 min today via timer.
Spotfin really took off today, aggressively guarding disc area. It (Male?) chases anything off that gets within 6-8".. busts up the Reds and the bluntnose-get out is clear.
Bluntnose are being observed cleaning underside of disc area until the male spotfin pops them. Bluntnose are spawning on the 45 deg upline of several big rocks I have in the tank and are also aggressive but looks like the spotfin started their regime first around 72 degs. Red shiner are colored but no behavior changes noted.
I have noted Red shiner can eat a very large chunk of pellet-and they eat a LOT. Red shiner also LOVE algae wafers! Spotfin will peck at that a bit but I have not seen BN doing much around the algae wafers.
I had also stated above that eggs appeared to be 1/4-1/2" inside rim of disc, however, it is very clear now the mass of eggs is way less than 1/4" from edge. I'd say 1/8-1/16" is where most of eggs are.
This is cool to watch but I can also tell spotfin seem to be very territorial and a disc structure is guarded by 1 male-as far as I can tell. I kept my eyes on a male for nearly 2.5hrs and he never left that area and runs everything off but females(assumption) because he circles them and they pull up to disc, swing sideways and underside is directly against disc when egg/s are expelled-very low number. Maybe 1-3 eggs per visit but it's really hard to see them, only accumulation after several hours.
My wife hates this.. :-))
THIS is true POND PORN.

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This is new science for us - very valuable - these species could fill the forage niche for limited gape, cool water species fisheries. Since this is my specialty I'm intrigued. Thank you for performing these experiments for the benefit of us all and the scientific community - you could publish a paper on this subject.

- Interesting to hear the RS are taking to algae aggressively, this is a benefit.

- SFS appear to be the dominant species - are they larger than anything else in the tank, or is it just their nature? Maybe it's just because they are guarding eggs, and aren't truly more aggressive than RS?

- How do RS spawn? Like GSH - in vegetation, or are they cavity spawners, like RS? Hoping they won't compete in a fishery over spawning areas but can coexist and both species proliferate.

- Are BNM spawning habits like FHM - underside of surfaces? From your observations it appears so.

I'm hopeful your tank research data suggests these 3 species can successfully coexist - would be a big win for us all.


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TJ, It seems the SFS are very aggressive and eagerly attack BNM when they get near the disc structure, but I can't yet determine the stage either species is specifically in. The BNM may get super aggressive as well as they get deeper into spawn mode.
The RS are spawners in both Macrophyte type growth and Literature says they will utilize sunfish nests as well, so similar in some aspects to GSH, but I haven't seen any patterns developing there, yet.
I can see with some of the fish I have, there is a niche for the sizes they can attain very quickly when considering SFS- Not as large or quite as deep bodied as GSH but I have some 3.5-4". The BNM are showing growth as well and are roughly 2.5-3.75" but shaped very similar to fathead.
The RS seldom exceed 3", maybe 3.25 (I read) but mine are 2.5-2.75" and are shaped more similar to the reference family-Carp.
The RS are also occupying the upper part of the water column here, they really don't interact with the other species in the tank until you chuck some crushed pellets or flake food in, then they aggressively chow down regardless of others present. They hang in the upper 6" or so where the other 2 species seem to prefer the lower 10" of the tank, mostly near the very bottom. Tank is only 22" deep so just a tank observation.

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I sure did not mean to hijack this Spot TAIL thread..
Apologize for that! Any way we could move this to a new thread?

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Red shiners belong to the genus Cyprinella which contains exclusively all the crevice spawning shiner species. Although a few authors have reported red shiners to spawn in other areas or habitats of steams, even open water (see below).

Red shiners (C. lutrensis) are non-guarders, brood hiders and speleophils (crevice spawners) (Simon, 1999; Hassan-Williams and Bonner, 2012). The male establishes his territory around a crevice and makes display passes along the spawning site. Occasionally males will swim toward females directing them towards the crevice. Males will approach and circle females, flicking their fins forward every few seconds. Courtship can last several hours, with females revisiting the spawning site over 200 times prior to egg release. During spawning the male swims above the female passing directly over the horizontal crevice. The female contorts violently expelling the eggs into the crevice. The first expulsion may be followed by another pass and expulsion. Females produce sounds to attract the males (Delco, 1960).

Eggs may then be deposited in a variety of environments; within crevices over a range of different substrates (gravel, sand, mud), near the surface over beds of submerged aquatic plants, in clear ponds or in association with green sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) and orangespotted sunfish (L. humilis) nests (Minckley, 1959; Cross, 1967; Minckley, 1972; Pflieger, 1975; Wang, 1986; TPWD, 2012). Spawning may also occur in midwater as the male and female swim through the water column (Minckley, 1972).

Females may release up to 16 batches of eggs per day, with up to 71 eggs per batch. An average clutch size may equal around 585 eggs and males and females may spawn 5-19 clutches over the reproductive season (Gale, 1986). Laser and Carlander (1971) reported that 485-684 eggs were laid per gravid female.

All the above from Advanced Reading:
https://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/86206

I commonly see spotfin eggs 1"-1.2" interior of the outer edge or perimeter of the spawning disks. However these are eggs deposited by large 3.5"-4.5" adults.

Note - it takes quite a bit of effort to extract (copy and paste) an active topic and place it in its own or new topic. It would be much easier and quicker to just change the title of this thread to include spotfins, red shiner.

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Appreciate you posting this Bill.
Maybe it's size and age that's keeping the Red shiner away from any spawning activity.. or possibly the fact they are in a tank. Aquarium hobbyist report success with this species in aquarium confinement.
I have 3.5 months of winter left to observe.
It appears obvious the BNM and SFS will do fine with proper spawning substrate. We'll see how the RS do in the forage pond.

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We are traveling relatively new territory for looking at the practicality of these shiners spawning in pond habitats. A lot of work still needs to be done with this topic. Keep up the good work guys. As soon as I can get some steelcolor shiners (max 6.2") I want to work with them for pond spawning.

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There are red shiner in a drainage ditch near my house. My son and I have collected some to fish with and to also put in his aquarium. His aquarium had two small bullheads (now bigger than anything else), 3 goldfish, a pleco, and eight Gams. We put 2 red shiners in the tank which I think were both female with no bright red fins. From bait catches I noticed that males with breeding color were less common.

From the get go in the aquarium, the red shiner were very robust swimmers and very skittish around our movements. They out competed every other fish in the tank at feedings and displayed aggressive behavior towards Gams and to a lesser extent the goldfish. Their harassment of Gams was so great that we decided to return them to the ditch.

In the water of the ditch they are very robust swimmers and difficult to catch with a hand net. Of course, this only heightened my son's interest in catching them.

Snipe, I am following your observations and hope you continue posting on the results if not in this thread one of your own making. We can delete posts ... so ... each could move his own to the new thread via a repost.

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I'll start a new thread after this with info going forward.
We'll call it: Cyprinella lutrensis..
Bill, I read that steelcolor shiner and Spotfin are very often misidentified in the wild due to very extreme similarity.
Those should be interesting as well.
jpsdad, I have not found any data or pictures that show "red" fins on the red shiner, maybe a local trait?
I think they started running out of colors and names, ie, Red shiner aka Rainbow dace, Redfin shiner and redhorse shiner. Some of this-to me-has been like being asked to identify which of 2 6" LMB is a FLMB..:-))

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jpsdad, I guess I should say the KS guide I'm referencing does not show the red fins.. I do see some descriptions showing true "red" fins on these, just not in my tank.

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Quote:
I'll start a new thread after this with info going forward.
We'll call it: Cyprinella lutrensis..

If you name it Cyprinella lutrensis.. I think you should include.... aka Red Shiner
If you start a new thread I will copy and paste the appropriate posts from this thread into the new thread so relevant information stays together. We (I) can edit the title if later decided.

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CityDad, DiamondDave, the stick
Recent Posts
What did you do at your pond today?
by Boondoggle - 05/19/24 12:35 AM
Can a pond lose just one species of fish?
by Boondoggle - 05/18/24 11:58 PM
Trapping the Crays
by Boondoggle - 05/18/24 05:17 PM
What Kind of Moss?
by FishinRod - 05/18/24 04:37 PM
Spotfin Shiners - Habitat, Cover and Structure
by canyoncreek - 05/17/24 11:57 AM
recommendations for northern YP/SMB/BT pond
by H20fwler - 05/17/24 10:51 AM
Bird Deter for patio furniture....
by Energymble - 05/17/24 04:46 AM
BG sex?
by Bill Cody - 05/16/24 08:50 PM
Spawn Identification
by Fishingadventure - 05/16/24 05:03 PM
Pest Control around Pond
by Bennettrand - 05/16/24 02:56 PM
Happy Birthday Bob-O
by Pat Williamson - 05/16/24 07:53 AM
Optimal vs. Purina
by gehajake - 05/16/24 07:26 AM
Newly Uploaded Images
Eagles Over The Pond Yesterday
Eagles Over The Pond Yesterday
by Tbar, December 10
Deer at Theo's 2023
Deer at Theo's 2023
by Theo Gallus, November 13
Minnow identification
Minnow identification
by Mike Troyer, October 6
Sharing the Food
Sharing the Food
by FishinRod, September 9
Nice BGxRES
Nice BGxRES
by Theo Gallus, July 28
Snake Identification
Snake Identification
by Rangersedge, July 12

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