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Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
#509811 08/05/19 11:55 AM
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Hi all,

Yesterday, I was walking around my 1 acre, 16 feet deep pond and noticed hundreds of small fish swimming around. I knew they weren't minnows, so I went out with a net to catch some. They were too fast, so I switched to a small hook and tiny peice or worm which seemed to work. Anyway, I caught one and am almost 100% sure they are Largemouth Bass, which makes sense since I did see three of four medium sized fish swimming around last year that I knew weren't my Brown Trout. Unfortunately, I didn't try to fish them out, and I think they bread.

I have attached some pictures, so people can see if they look like bass to you, although I will say under the water they have the distinct black stripe. It doesn't really show in the photos I took in the air.

http://imgur.com/a/0zFDxrm

What do you think about having this many bass in a trout pond? There are about 60-80 Brown Trout, and the pond is aerated with a fountain. My worry is there is not enough food to support them, since there are only minnows, frogs, and insects. Maybe a few crayfish as well. Also, how long will it take these babies to get big?

Thanks for reading and your help.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509812 08/05/19 12:14 PM
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Certainly looks like LMB YOY. It would be reasonable to expect them to get to 12" long in a year with decent food sources and even sooner given more than average forages.

Remove as many as you can so they don't take away from your trout's growth. Do trout eat bass fry?


Fish on!,
Noel
Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Quarter Acre #509813 08/05/19 12:27 PM
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Hi,

Wow, didn't realize how fast they can grow. Just one thing to note, my pond is in Ontario, Canada, so by December the water will be frozen until mid March. I wonder if that slows the growth. Problem is they are really hard to catch and are very plentiful. My biggest worry is there is not enough food for them, since I don't have any smaller fish of any kind other than minnows. The trout are just there to keep things healthy (mainly to control the leaches), because they don't get eaten or fisher for much. I just hope they don't screen up the well working ecosystem.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509814 08/05/19 12:31 PM
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Well that's not good news. How big are your Brown Trout? As Brown Trout grow their diet leans more on other fish. If it were my trout pond I would definitely want those bass out of there.


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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
wbuffetjr #509815 08/05/19 12:36 PM
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Hi,

The trout were stocked two summers ago at 8-10" in length. By now, they are probably around 14". That's by best guess anyway. I was told by the fish farm that they could do well on just minnows and the many insects in the water. Hope that was correct. What do you believe will happen if the bass mature? Will this become a populated bass pond, even without bait fish? Let me know. Thank you for your help.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509817 08/05/19 12:59 PM
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Bass growth rates would be slower up north, but I would bet I was not far off by saying 12" in a year under moderate conditions. LMB can overpopulate a small BOW in a few years, maybe by 5 years without proper predators present and culling. What typically happens is you end up with a very large population of 12" bass that have stunted in growth because they run out of food. This means your trout will also run out of food. Hopefully your trout are eating them...this could be a good thing. Although, I have never heard of anyone creating a forage base for trout with LMB.


Fish on!,
Noel
Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Quarter Acre #509828 08/05/19 03:39 PM
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Hi,

Thanks for your reply. The only predators I can think of are snapping turtles which there are a lot of, and they're really big. Also, there are many birds that catch little fish on the surface of the water, but that's really it. I don't want stunted fish, so would you recommend stocking anything else to correct the problem? I got trout so I didn't have to stock sunfish, but if it's 100% needed than I will. Let me know what you think.

Thanks


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509831 08/05/19 03:48 PM
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I know nothing about Canada but: With only trout in there, I would question what the bass are eating except each other.


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
Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Quarter Acre #509833 08/05/19 04:13 PM
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How would you recommend getting them out? I thought maybe minnow traps, but I don't think anything would entice the bass to enter. I can't really get them out effectively with a hook and worm, since they are not very aggressive and there are so many it would take ages. They are also too fast to be caught by net and super fearful of the net. What about a cast net, since I they are always near the shore?

Any suggestions would be appreciated.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509837 08/05/19 07:36 PM
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I think you are "stuck" with the bass until you renovate the entire pond. It will be extremely difficult to get them all out. All you need is one male & one female to annually repopulate the pond. Best time to try and catch all of them by angling is spring before they spawn. For best results use minnows as chumming and then as bait. Worms can work as additional bait when the bass become minnow hook shy. By all means be sure to return and let us know if you ever eliminate all bass and how you did it.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 08/05/19 07:38 PM.

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Bill Cody #509840 08/05/19 08:24 PM
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Hi,

Renovating the pond or doing anything drastic is really not an option, unfortunately. Since, aside from three big ones, all of the bass are tiny, do you recommend using cast nets or traps to try and get rid of them. And then use hook and like for the big three. I assume that somehow the big three got in, probably someone dropped them in, and then spawned, since another member said they were YOY. I just don't want to trap a bunch just to have the remaining ones grow up and populate the pond anyway. Let me know what you think. Thanks.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509846 08/05/19 10:59 PM
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Could he selectively kill the bass by intentionally supercooling the pond in the winter?

Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Bocomo #509873 08/06/19 12:13 PM
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Hi,

Not too sure how I could do that, since it freezes over completely. So it's obviously really cold. But if it's an option let me know how. Thanks.

Does anyone know a good way to remove the baby bass, if that is the route I choose to o go down? I was thinking maybe minnow traps, but don't know what bait is best. I also think a cast net might be effective, since all the bass stay in the shallows edges of the pond.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509874 08/06/19 12:16 PM
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Seine net the pond releasing the trout. Will not get all the LMB but it will help.
















Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509878 08/06/19 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted By: Fyfer123
Hi,

Not too sure how I could do that, since it freezes over completely. So it's obviously really cold. But if it's an option let me know how. Thanks.



Running aeration all Winter would take the temp extremely low. Mine got down to 33 degrees.


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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
wbuffetjr #509885 08/06/19 02:13 PM
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I can consider doing that, although we usually let it freeze over in the winter, so it can be used for hockey and skating.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
ewest #509886 08/06/19 02:14 PM
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I am looking into that now. Sounds like it could be effective if I target certain areas.


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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509912 08/06/19 08:16 PM
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LMB are extremely difficult to catch in traps. They seen to be instinctively trap smart. The larger bass and trout will eat a lot of the small 2"-4" bass then in spring use intensive angling effort to catch all that are willing to bite live bait. I doubt you will ever be able to remove all of them. There are likely to be a few smart ones that become very hook shy. Then to maybe remove them try baiting them with minnows (live ones then maybe dead ones as bass learn to eat tossed food items) or worms and then when bass are eating aggressively bury a small hook on light line (2-4lb) in the bait. Let them swallow the bait to minimize loss and missed bites.

You need to remove as many as possible before the next spawn or all your hard effort becomes just practice. Since you are in Canada it may take 2 yrs for the current year class to be big enough to spawn. Thus if you can get out the 3 adults you will have 2 yrs to remove all the 2019 year class LMB.

You could try to train them to eat pieces of cut fish as NEDOC did to food train his muskie. Then use small hooks INSIDE strips of cut fish so bass cannot see the hook. Please keep us updated about your progress of removing all the LMB. Also keep track of how many you managed to remove. I am very interested about your progress.
http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=38244&Number=508967#Post508967

Last edited by Bill Cody; 08/06/19 08:30 PM.

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Bill Cody #509915 08/06/19 08:49 PM
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Hi,

Thanks for your detailed response, Bill. Those all seem like good suggestions, although I wonder if embracing the bass may be a better option for me. Since I don't care a lot about whether or not I have trout, (I don't fish for them or anything) would you recommend stocking some bait fish to prevent the pond from having more problems such as stunting. Do you think that's a good option? I don't ind having bass, but I want them to exist well with the other beings in my pond.

Thanks again.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509930 08/07/19 09:13 AM
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The LMB will eat everything that fits in their mouth. It is not uncommon to have LMB only ponds. They will find their own equilibrium point as a population. Their condition will not be great nor will they reach their potential but it will stabilize. After this year and LMB spawn you will have to stock advanced sized fish of other varieties if you want them to survive.
















Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Bill Cody #509937 08/07/19 10:08 AM
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Originally Posted By: Bill Cody
LMB are extremely difficult to catch in traps. They seen to be instinctively trap smart. The larger bass and trout will eat a lot of the small 2"-4" bass then in spring use intensive angling effort to catch all that are willing to bite live bait. I doubt you will ever be able to remove all of them. There are likely to be a few smart ones that become very hook shy. Then to maybe remove them try baiting them with minnows (live ones then maybe dead ones as bass learn to eat tossed food items) or worms and then when bass are eating aggressively bury a small hook on light line (2-4lb) in the bait. Let them swallow the bait to minimize loss and missed bites.

You need to remove as many as possible before the next spawn or all your hard effort becomes just practice. Since you are in Canada it may take 2 yrs for the current year class to be big enough to spawn. Thus if you can get out the 3 adults you will have 2 yrs to remove all the 2019 year class LMB.

You could try to train them to eat pieces of cut fish as NEDOC did to food train his muskie. Then use small hooks INSIDE strips of cut fish so bass cannot see the hook. Please keep us updated about your progress of removing all the LMB. Also keep track of how many you managed to remove. I am very interested about your progress.
http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=38244&Number=508967#Post508967


Bill, could you please comment on whether or not he could intentionally freeze out the bass by supercooling with aeration during the Canadian winter?

Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
ewest #509941 08/07/19 11:20 AM
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Hi,

Thanks for your response. I am a little confused on what you mean by "After this year and LMB spawn you will have to stock advanced sized fish of other varieties if you want them to survive." I thought you said that LMB only ponds do exist and do alright. So, do I need to stock some bait fish or will the pond work itself out? Please let me know.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509944 08/07/19 11:32 AM
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If you decided against a LMB only pond (and opt for a different mix) then any fish you stock after LMB get to 12 inches (same as after next years spawn) will have to be advanced sized fish in order to keep from being eaten.

If you do nothing you will have a LMB only pond .

Last edited by ewest; 08/07/19 11:33 AM.















Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
ewest #509947 08/07/19 12:16 PM
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Hi,

I do understand if nothing is added I will have an LMB only pond, but I want to know what will happen if that is the case. Will there not be overcrowding and stunting? I assume they will run out of food very quickly if there are no baitfish, bluegill, etc. There are other species in the pond that need to eat as well, such as snapping turtles, birds, and others, so I don't want them to suffer because of the bass.

Thanks again for your help.


Adam

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Re: Found Tons of Baby Bass in my Trout Pond
Fyfer123 #509950 08/07/19 12:54 PM
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The LMB will eat each other. If they are big enough, they will also eat any trout fingerlings you put in there.

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