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all the new talk about res taking the optimal pellets has me thinking. could we cage raise some res and force them to take pellets before releasing them to the pond? i know for a fact lmb will take pellets after being in a cage for a while. i saw this at my old pond.


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You can try cage raising some RES using Optimal Jr pellets. Getting RES to eat artificial food is pretty tricky and being successful is as much luck and art with some science. At first for the first several days try mixing some chopped earthworms(bait store) or minced shrimp with the food. You have to get the RES eating to stay healthy before they form body fungus. I think the moist foods will help stimulate feeding of the RES. Report your resuls. Many here will find your project as VERY helpful information.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 02/05/17 03:33 PM.

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I tried my hand at cage raising some redear last April. I started out with 200 three to four inch redear that I put in a 32"32"60" cage. Stocked six 3" bluegill in the cage to help train. I started feeding them a mixture of hydrated AM 200, AM 300 and AM400 mixed with either chopped nightcrawlers, small pieces of redworms from the bait shop or thawed frozen brine shrimp and tubifex worms.


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I'm pretty sure at least some of my RES are eating pellets in my forage pond. I put feed out daily for the minnows in the pond and I think the RES got started eating it.

The reason I think so is I noticed when I wanted to catch some adults to move to my sediment pond to restock it, it was much easier to catch them if I fed the fish first and fed only in the area I wanted to fish. Caught 10 that way to transfer.

Here is a thread I keep up specific to RES. Browse through it and there are some links to feed training RES. I will also add this thread to the links.

RES info and links

Last edited by snrub; 03/04/17 01:21 PM.

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Reno403- What were the results of your raising RES in the cage? What percent ate pellets and grew? How long did you keep them in the cage?


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I had the fish in a cage from early April until mid October when I released them into the pond. There were165 still in the cage. The largest of which were around eight inches and there were about 40 that showed no growth at all. I plan on trying again this spring and was wondering if I would have better results if I split them up into more cages so there not as crowded. Any suggestions.

Steve


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I would say you did pretty well considering they were RES.


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Did you take any before and after pictures of your RES in the cage feeding study?? Because 40RES as non-eating slow growing RES at least survived, 125 grew well, and you had only 18% deaths of the 200 3"-4" that were stocked, I would consider this very good for caged RES. In 2017 I would again try the same stocking number you used in 2016. Your cage stocking density of 6 /cuft was not too high because some crowding of the fish in the cage is good because it helps increase competition, thus improves feed training, and reduces aggressiveness, territorialism, and 'fighting' of the fish.

As a comparison, however this time I would try feeding Optimal Jr instead of the Aquamax. This will be a very good educational, RES food feeding test. Many will learn from your pellet feeding test.

Those feeding RES say the RES eat the Optimal noticeably better and train to pellets quite a bit faster than using the Aquamax. Also use your same training method of adding chopped meats as in 2016. Optimal is available in northern IN from Hoosier Pond Pros. He might even give you a discount on the feed if you share the feeding data and some pictures with him.
http://www.hoosierpondpros.com/Store.html

Last edited by Bill Cody; 03/04/17 09:02 PM.

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