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Re: I'm a new member
jpsdad #519263 04/12/20 08:50 AM
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Jpsdad-
like my “8lb LMB goal” I’ve had to rethink my stocking plan as well. I have only two farm options here, and both put several kinds of fish in at the same time. I’m deferring to one’s expertise (since I have none) so here’s what’s coming soon to my 3/4 acre pond;
20 lbs FHM, 100 Channel cats, 375 BG, 150 HBG, 150 Red Ears.

Next year he suggests another 20lbs FHM and 75 LMB. I may overrule that and only take 30-40 LMB.

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519300 04/12/20 08:26 PM
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I'm at a loss as to why he thinks you need 20 additional pounds of FHM next year. There should be standing weight of minnows several times that weight going into spring.

I guess my question is this. Is there no option to get exactly what you want?


Common sense is not so common - Voltaire

It isn't what we don't know that gives us trouble, it's what we know that ain't so - Will Rogers


Re: I'm a new member
jpsdad #519301 04/12/20 08:56 PM
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Oh yes, I can tailor what I buy. There are no mandatory packages. I didn’t initially want channel cats, but he strongly urged me to do so for a balanced fish population. I guess it’s the standard newbie dilemma; how far does one trust the expertise of fish farms who sell fish for a living, and whom other local pond owners endorse? Many ponds around here seem to stock minnows annually. Lol.

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519302 04/12/20 09:40 PM
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Well I think he thinks you would enjoy the catfish. They are not needed for balance. The catfish are NOT going to help you grow 8 lb bass. For that matter neither will so many RES and any Hybrid BG. Don't get me wrong, they are fun to catch and I know I and the fish farmer would enjoy them but is this what you want? Decent sized panfish and small bass? His recommendation is for that and there nothing wrong with it if that is what you want.

Usually, to get what you want, you have to sacrifice something or work harder for it. For trophy LMB, it is easier to sacrifice some things than to work harder for it. For example, you could sacrifice a large population of harvestable panfish that are too large for the LMB to eat. You could sacrifice having HBG and catfish. You could sacrifice having so many RES but enough to handle snails and add modest forage. You could sacrifice, as you are already thinking, a lot of bass. All these sacrifices make it much easier to grow large LMB with less effort. It's like stacking the cards. Stack the cards for 8 lb LMB and there is a very good chance you will grow them. Make compromises to have the things you could sacrifice and the sledding to 8lb LMB will be much harder. In the end, whether you achieve the goal of 8 lb LMB will depend on whether you worked hard enough to overcome any compromises made.

You'll just be going in with minnows and plants for now. So there is plenty of time to think about what you really want and what you don't want to sacrifice. Think about these two questions because the answers to them determine what course you should take.


Common sense is not so common - Voltaire

It isn't what we don't know that gives us trouble, it's what we know that ain't so - Will Rogers


Re: I'm a new member
jpsdad #519303 04/12/20 10:52 PM
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Good info that I will spend a lot of time studying on this. As you say, there is time. I appreciate the candor.
So, cutting out HBG and catfish, what numbers of FHM and BG/RES would be better? And come LMB stocking time next year; is it better to go with larger sized ones up front (30 or so) as opposed to fingerlings?

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519304 04/12/20 11:17 PM
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I'm with jpsdad here.. Leave cats and HBG out unless you specifically want them. Nothing there will help your goal of decent LMB.
10-15lbs of FHM will be plenty.
375 on BG doesn't sound too bad to me, maybe 75-100 RES.
As for LMB, be careful with larger fish and chose the largest for the time of year as you don't want fish that aren't growing at max rate. You have better growing conditions at your end of the state-longer as well, but If stocking larger LMB in spring I'd look for 7-8" minimum, 8-11" would be expected with the growing season you have in your area with well-fed fish from hatchery.
If someone tries to push 4-6" yr 1 LMB on you, move on.. and, if you're having trouble sourcing fish let me know, I'll set you up with 2 of Kansas's best.

Re: I'm a new member
Snipe #519313 04/13/20 06:58 AM
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Snipe - that’s more in line with the numbers and fish my initial research bore out. My thanks to you both. Now to find a cooperative farm. Please do email me the two contacts you have; I’m all about different options in a free market system. kdzetmeir@aol.com

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519318 04/13/20 08:17 AM
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Karl,

For me, just personal preference, I think I would enjoy the farmers recs and catch a lot of good panfish and scrappy small bass for recreation and eating. I know that this is what the farmer is thinking when he makes the rec he gave you. There is always the risk of dissatisfaction even though someone gets what they want. If he set you up for a trophy bass foregone conclusion there is the risk you might say about his advice:

"Yeah I have some big bass but I fish 4 hours to catch one and the bluegill are small. I can't catch the bigger ones because the little ones beat them to the hook every time. I dreamed of pond where I caught a lot of fish but I have a pond that I fish two or three evening to catch one (very big) fish."

Trophy bass are a different animal altogether. Most large impoundments either don't produce them or they produce them in concentrations that are quantified in acres/fish ... not fish/acre. In the best of them, it takes > 80 hours of fishing effort to catch one and many fishermen never do. Consider bass tournaments, the best of the best even bear this out. So if you can catch a 8lb bass once for every 4 to 6 hours of effort, the bass fishing for trophies is well beyond excellent.

An 8 pound bass (on average) needs 40 lbs/yrs of forage (>4" in length) in order to maintain its weight. At 50 lbs/yr, it will grow a pound. So if you have 8 of these in your 3/4 acre pond it will take around 400 lbs/year of forage to maintain and grow just them. Whether your bow can do this will depend on how many smaller bass you have and what standing weight of (too many-too big) BG and RES you have. For an 8 lb bass, 3.8" to 4.8" forage will comprise 68% of their numerical intake of prey(~ 60% by weight). This is the optimum length in terms of energy gained and capture success. Prey of this length have little defense against an 8 lb bass. They also eat larger prey and 4.8 to 6 in forage will comprise 13% of the their diet numerically(~24% by weight). Prey above 6" do not commonly fall prey to 8 lb LMB unless sick or dying but still would comprise ~13% of weight. Around 84% of the weight an 8 lb LMB eats is comprised of prey ranging between 3.8" and 6" in length. In a bow where 8lb LMB only have > 6" BG to eat, eg ponds where YOY are cropped by smaller bass, the 8 lb LMB begin making the trek of having a 2 lb head and a 3 pound body. Scroll down this thread to see an example of that.

Having a large standing weight of harvestable panfish that are too large for LMB to eat will significantly lower the production of 3.8" to 4.8" forage (especially when small bass are present) and this has the effect of starving Trophy LMB. So it is often recommended that one have a small forage pond to raise 2" to 3" BG to supplement the food chain. Other things people do is stock tilapia. So tilapia grow fast and can attain > 4" in less than a growing season. Furthermore, they eat foods that the BG can't expanding annual production of prey. Once your LMB get to 5 lbs, TP will do a lot to help them keep growing.

Big bass can be expensive to grow. But this can be lessened by stacking your deck. If you are willing to forgo the fishing diversity and enjoyment that big panfish can bring ... and would be satisfied with 2 or 3 trophies catches/week fishing evenings ... then I would expand on thoughts already presented that I think would help you to grow some massive LMB.

Last edited by jpsdad; 04/13/20 09:26 PM.

Common sense is not so common - Voltaire

It isn't what we don't know that gives us trouble, it's what we know that ain't so - Will Rogers


Re: I'm a new member
jpsdad #519341 04/13/20 06:23 PM
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After the excellent info you and Snipe provided and doing some more online research to include googling photos of different sized largemouth bass, i’ve totally revised my fishing goals for this pond. I now think LMB in the 3 to 4 pound range would be good enough. I readjusted my fish stocking order today for only FHM, BG and RES. Later when vegetation spreads, maybe a grass carp or two or even Talapia. Many thanks again for the great information you both provided!

Last edited by KarlZ; 04/13/20 06:25 PM.
Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519349 04/13/20 08:50 PM
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If you stock pellet trained LMB you will very easily grow 3-4 lb bass in just 3-4 years. Add several hybrid striped bass per acre and you will have a fantastic, enjoyable fishery.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 04/13/20 08:52 PM.

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Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519350 04/13/20 09:17 PM
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Originally Posted by KarlZ
After the excellent info you and Snipe provided and doing some more online research to include googling photos of different sized largemouth bass, i’ve totally revised my fishing goals for this pond. I now think LMB in the 3 to 4 pound range would be good enough. I readjusted my fish stocking order today for only FHM, BG and RES. Later when vegetation spreads, maybe a grass carp or two or even Talapia. Many thanks again for the great information you both provided!


I think you are going to really enjoy this plan.


Common sense is not so common - Voltaire

It isn't what we don't know that gives us trouble, it's what we know that ain't so - Will Rogers


Re: I'm a new member
Bill Cody #519369 04/14/20 02:51 PM
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Forgot to mention that I’ll wait a year before stocking LMB to let the minnows and panfish really take off. I do like the idea of a couple hybrid stripers, but haven’t found a farm in the Midwest that has them.

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519373 04/14/20 04:13 PM
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Harbin fish farms east of Wichita. If Mark doesn't have them I know where some 4-6" fish are right now.
I would still wait to stock those also though.. let the forage base build first.

Last edited by Snipe; 04/14/20 04:14 PM.
Re: I'm a new member
Snipe #519389 04/14/20 08:30 PM
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Much obliged!!

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519618 04/20/20 10:17 AM
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After reading through several other threads about spring-fed ponds vs. groundwater ponds, I've come to think my builder was incorrect saying ours was spring-fed. From one of the threads, I take it a true spring-fed pond will continuously fill the pond so water will be going through the pipe or over a spillway. When ours was dug, water did start seeping into it, but it hasn't "filled" it up and the water lever only rises after a hard rain. It's still about four feet below the spillway. Our area seems to have a high water table (if that makes sense), as we had to install a sump pump in our basement that runs regularly, and there are a few very "leaky" front yards down the street from us. What are some things I should watch for, given its really not a spring-fed pond?

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519623 04/20/20 12:14 PM
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If you have a ground water pond then the pond will seek the level that matches the water table. If your pond has more water than surrounding water levels it will go down and if you get rain, run off or the water table comes up so will your pond. You should mount an aluminum ruler on a stake or mark a PVC pipe and drive it in the shallows of the pond. Track your water height up and down for a while and you'll get a feel for what the factors are that make your water go up and down.

As temps go up you will lose some from sun/evaporation and those with wind exposure will lose more from evaporation than those with sheltered ponds.

IF you don't like the level your pond is at now (and it probably is about where it is going to be since you haven't mentioned super heavy rains or unusually hot weather).. Then you either add to it with a well to keep it above the level it wants to seek or you plug access to the ground water table. Adding water works best if you have a big well and efficient well motor and a good power source near the pond. Some use gasoline powered pumps connected to a nearby stream. It can get costly especially since you CAN raise your pond level, but you usually CANNOT raise the water table level all around you.

Most of use either learned to like the level that our pond sought for itself, or we used soilfloc powdered floculant/polymer to seal the bottom of the pond and then could more easily keep it at a higher level.

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519637 04/20/20 04:24 PM
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Thanks very much. I’ll make a PVC marker (using a stump right now). The pond is still filling as it goes up a bit after each. Our heaviest rains haven’t hit yet.

Re: I'm a new member
KarlZ #519694 04/21/20 11:53 AM
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Figured out how to post photos. Started a new gallery with a good pic of the new pond.

http://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showgallery&Number=519679

Last edited by KarlZ; 04/27/20 09:25 AM. Reason: added pic
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