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Stocking plan for my 2.7 acre pond.
stock fatheads, emeralds and golden shiners along with the toads, frogs, and salamanders already there. Get at least 5-10 lbs of each started in the spring, but can do quite a bit more if budget allows feed the minnows during the summer crushed up catfish food or even crushed up high protein feed to grow tons of forage all summer long!
stock the redear sunfish in the spring/summer 2019.
Option 1:
The fall 2019 stocking to do all the species of fish the first fall
75 hsb
75 smb
75 walleye
50 cc
500 yellow perch
250 black crappie
With this plan put/take the predator species about every 2-3 years just add in what you want to take out.
Option 2:
Incrementally add predator species with a focus on something more than another do the crappie and perch and cc this fall and then go on a three year rotation of the smallmouth, walleye, and hsb it would be something like this:
Fall 2019 do about 100 smallmouth and 100 walleye
Spring 2020 do about 50-100 hsb
Then every fall just throw in a few smb, or walleye, or hsb one year do a few smallies, the next year do a few walleye, and the next year do a few hsb.
feed about 100 lbs of high protein fish food per month from April to October with the multi-species pond plan.
Curious as to what others think about this plan and the choice of which option would be best in your opinion?
Note: This is the recommended stocking plan advised to me by a very well known Pond/Lake Management Company not something I thought of by myself. I will be doing one of the 2 options just not 100% on which one.
Thanks for your suggestions!

Heppy

Last edited by Heppy; 08/29/19 10:56 PM.
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I'd do less cc and wait a couple of years to add the crappie. Get the largest walleye you can. Bump the YP up. I think this will give your YP a chance to establish as they're very easy prey for your predator base - crappie will be easier to control once the predator base is strong and able to keep them limited - you should see faster growth and better overall RW's out of the crappie this way.

I fish a 2 acre pond that had 25 cc added 4 years ago, they were about 8-12" at stocking. The pond has bg, bcp, lmb, warmouth as well. The cc are 7+lbs this year and growing very well, very easy to catch too! That small stocking number allows them to grow quickly and not out compete the other fish in the pond. Its a heavily pressured public body of water and honestly has the best balance of all species I've seen anywhere.

You'll have quite a fun place to fish with that combination

Last edited by Matzilla; 06/14/19 10:29 PM.

Mat Peirce
1.25 acre southeast Iowa pond
LMB, BG, YP, WE, HSB, RES, BCP
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I'm finding I'm in no way an expert, but I will tell you what has happened to state fishery ponds with salamanders..
4 years ago 6 runs that had water over winter were stocked with FHM and 3 months later we found about the same amount of FHM remaining that were stocked with nearly 1000lbs of waterdogs total from the 6 runs. Seines were run through these about 1 week prior to stocking FHM and confirmed nothing present.
Others more knowledgeable may say go ahead but I learned something from this that I would hate to see repeated.
A few CC, 12-14" 5-8 per run are placed in right after runs are confirmed empty now.

Last edited by Snipe; 06/14/19 10:33 PM.
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Heppy Offline OP
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Matzilla, I should clarify by saying that all fish stocked in option 1 would be about the same size. Larger WE would be used using option 2. Curious as to what your thoughts were on waiting on the CC?
Snipe, I would like to know why FHM were stocked in winter as FHM only reproduce in the late spring and summer? IMHO the FHM were stocked to early for reproduction in this situation.
Thanks!
Heppy

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The runs had water over winter.. FHM were stocked first of May.

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Snipe, so you are agreeing that cc should be stocked initially option 1? Just to clarify what was the water temperature when FHM were stocked? If Im understanding correctly the FHM were stocked in May and the 6 runs were seined in August with about the same amount of FHM and 1000lbs of waterdogs which I assume is salamanders? Thanks for the replies just trying to get this correct.
Heppy

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Yes, waterdogs are larval tiger salamanders and they have a much more voracious appetite vs their land-laden form. They look a lot like bullfrog tadpoles with external gills and serious attitude about eating everything they can catch.
This was at the Pratt hatchery and water temp would have been 70+ by may 1. The minnows may have produced but were eaten as fast or faster than they could produce.
My opinion is add a few cats with initial stocking of forage base. CC are not a serious threat as a predator until they get some size (4-5-6lbs) on them. Yearling cats for maybe even 2 yrs forage on some plant types, even FA and all sorts of other material often untouched by other species. They will clean up sally egg pouches and young waterdogs and grow into eating larger waterdogs as things progress.
I have salamanders in the western end of KS as well and I put 10 15-17"CC in within a week of stocking the first FHM's last June. My pond is teaming with FHM, GSH, YP, male BG, SMB, RES, a few Saugeye and 7 of the original 10 CC in my 5/8 ac pond with no ill effects.
I work with/for several Biologists within the state and spend a lot of time in our state hatcheries. I followed some of their recommendations on the CC based on their knowledge of this particular issue and my plans for the CC at this point are just additional fishing opportunities for the few visitors and guests I allow to fish the pond.

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Snipe, Thank you for the clarification!
Heppy

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Any time. In a 3 acre pond I can't see any reason not to put CC in on initial stocking of forage, if starting with fish of a size suitable such as 6-8".

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All,
I stand corrected. There are spring lizards not tiger salamanders that occupy the aforementioned property. They arent a threat to FHM populations. So option 1 or 2 if it were your new 3 acre pond?
Thanks for suggestions!😀
Heppy

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I know nothing about stocking anywhere but West Texas. But, here and maybe other places, we cant stock crappie in anything less than 25 acres. They spawn earlier than other species like bass, have a hinged jaw, and can wipe out later spawning species.


It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
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Dave Davidson,
Thank you for responding! Im no expert myself. The way I understand it, the other fish included in the stocking plan will account for any overpopulation concerns with the BC.
Thanks
Heppy

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Lusk has a YouTube Facebook program on Wednesday nights. I believe it is at 7:00 central time. Hit him with the question.


It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
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Thanks for the suggestion Dave! However, Im almost 100% positive Bob Lusk would agree only because of the group that gave me the Stocking plan. The reason I posted the information is to gain additional insight as to others point of view on which option and reasons why they would choose if it were their own. Im 50/50 right now and was hoping to get additional responses to sway me one way or the other. There is no wrong answer. I will be doing one of the 2 options according to fish availability of course.
Thanks for any and all suggestions! I truly appreciate the feedback!
Heppy

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Heppy, what do YOU want from the pond in the end?? What is YOUR goal here?
It would be wrong to suggest a stocking plan based on what "I" (WE) like and hope it works for you.

Last edited by Snipe; 06/18/19 12:27 AM.
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Snipe,
Im really glad you asked that question. Almost every pond in my area has the standard LMB, BG, CC with a few RES and HBG here and there. Your question made me go back and think about the original post I wrote. My goal is to have a multi species pond that provides angling opportunities for all fish listed for their great table fare and or fighting ability. Trophy sized fish would only be a bonus. I believe Option 1 will be the best choice because it allows me the opportunity for the diverse fishery I desire from the start. I appreciate your helping me to think out loud. It has given me the direction to move forward.
Thanks!
Heppy

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Time to back track! I closed the valve on the 2.7 acre pond this evening. I also added 12lbs of FHM to the.15 acre forage pond from Anderson Minnow today. It looks like because of the later completion date on my pond I will have to go with option 2. The forage pond also contains about 200 creek crawdads that I stocked from the small stream that feeds the big pond. As soon as the big pond is 3-4 feet deep I plan on adding GSH as well as additional crawdads and FHM. For this fall 2019 stocking it will be feed trained 500 YP, 250 BC, 50-100 RES and possibly the 50 CC. The Texas Hunter lm175 pro series is the feeder I have set up to purchase. Im thinking of adding 50-100 SMB to the forage pond for a 2020 fall stocking in the big pond. 6-7 SMB are available this fall and I would hate to not be able to find them fall 2020. Im going to need 100 WE as well fall 2020 ,however, Im not so sure that they would be a great mix with the SMB in the forage pond. Has anyone mixed SMB and WE in a grow out pond?
Thoughts,
Heppy

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Reading back through this thread I now realize that I need to slow things way down and not be in such a big hurry. The fish stocked will be the same, but in a much different order. I put 12lbs of FHM in the forage pond the first part of August and have transferred approximately 5-6lbs to the main pond. I will be adding 8 lbs of the smaller GSH tomorrow to both ponds. This October/November 500 2-4, 500 4-6 and 100 6-8 feed trained YP will be added to the 2.7 acre pond. I realize that not all of the YP will be feed trained. This is very important to the stocking plan as I was advised. The 6-8 YP will be the genetic backbone of my pond. I did purchase the Texas Hunter lm175 pro series feeder and have been feeding lil strike. I am getting lots of reproduction from the FHM in both ponds and the feeder creek and will find out shortly with the GSH introduction tomorrow. No other fish will be added until fall 2020. Im making this post to document what transpired in the months and years to come.
Heppy

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That's cool Heppy, I look forward to following your progress!

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Whoops! I forgot to list the 200 4-6 RES for parasite control in the main pond and 10-25 in the forage pond. I can add 50 CC to the main pond if I desire just not sure that I want them in there yet.
Heppy

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GSH: A majority (3/4) box of #4 and a box of #6 added to the main pond. Partial (1/4) box of #4 added to the forage pond today. They were $115/box from Anderson Minnow.
Heppy

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Heppy: Just a thought for you as I have done this, CC's grow fast and that sound greats, but at one point they become number one in the food chain. My CCs are now almost 5 years old, they have spawned even though told they would not in small pond (half acre). So I have at least three levels of CC and the bigest are about 30-32 inches and weigh in at about 10-14 pounds. The important thing is, they can eat anything they want, they have very large mouths! Food for thought when thinking of adding them into a pond.


half-acre pond, LMB, HBG, BG, GSH and CC ....goal is to
have fun fishing. And I subscribe!
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Funky,
Thanks for that information! I am leaning towards not stocking the CC because of that exact reason. I am actually thinking that if I do add them it will be after the HSB in late spring/fall of 2021.
Thanks,
Heppy

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UPDATE!
In late October we had some locally heavy downpours with the main pond going over the emergency spillway. The 10 pipe couldnt handle the amount of rain. At this point I became gun shy of stocking 20lbs SS and 600 adult feed trained 7+ and 250 4-6 YP. This was going to be a sizable investment ($3500) with delivery. I didnt want to spend the money on fish that might just wash away before they would even spawn. So I decided that rather wait until spring 2020 to install a siphon that I should just take a chance with a smaller number of YP. I was able to obtain 25 8+ and 400 4-6 feed trained YP for just a little over $900 and delivered them to the pond. Also 300 1-2 RES were added to the main pond. I didnt add any fish (RES or YP) to the forage pond because I will not be using it as a grow out pond and didnt think that I needed to be concerned about parasites in the FHM/GSH and crawdads. Please feel free to correct me if Im wrong. The 25 8+ YP is all the supplier would sell me. Do you think I have enough YP to seed the pond for the fall 2020 stocking of 50-75 SMB, 100 WE and possibly the 250 BCP?
Thanks!
Heppy

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Chairman, Pond Boss Legacy award; Moderator; field correspondent
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SMB stocking should be ok, Id ladder stock WE 20-25 annually so several year classes exist. Their annual growth rates/WR will dictate whether to stock more or fewer the next season - does sufficient forage exist to justify stocking more, or should fishery populations decrease a bit moving forward. Your WE body conditions will dictate your supplemental stocking strategy.

I would hold off on BCP for a while - they can become a management issue. HBCP are a much better choice but Id still wait until your apex predators are adult size and gape capabilities allow them to help manage BCP reproduction. Your YP should spawn this Spring.

Last edited by teehjaeh57; 11/26/19 01:59 AM. Reason: added some stuff and clarified

Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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