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Pellet feeding issues
#521392 05/21/20 06:30 PM
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Ok my hybrid stripers are still not eating pellets. I have started hydrating some pellets in an effort to see if I can entice them to eat - but also to see if I can get some BG interests in pellet feeding. So far the BG will take an occasional pellet but spit it immediately. Today for the first time I had two HSB take a pellet but they also spit it immediately. It didn’t surprise me with the bg but it surprised me with the HSB since I’m sure they were fed pellets exclusively at the hatchery. Soooo - is there a more palatable food I should try? Are there certain brands of food that the fish are less eager to take? The food I am feeding I purchased from the hatchery and it is made by Ziegler. Any advice appreciated.

Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521395 05/21/20 08:29 PM
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Wow, Ryan, if it's the same food they ate at the hatchery I don't know why they don't like now.

Try some other feeds to see if that is the issue. Purina, Optimal are the ones I'm most familiar with, but there are others. Remember that BG and HSB are predators and so want high protein feed, not high carb pellets more suited for tilapia and catfish.


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17. 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 107




Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521401 05/21/20 09:50 PM
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Thanks for the reply. I bought the feed from the hatchery assuming it was what they fed - but I didn’t ask that question so I don’t know for sure if it is what they used.

Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521402 05/21/20 10:45 PM
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When I first started feeding, it took three or four weeks for my fish to respond much. If they aren't going for it by then, I'd try different feeds. Also, it helps if you feed at the same place & time every day, not too much at a time. Best of luck, and let us know how it goes.

Last edited by anthropic; 05/21/20 11:00 PM.

8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17. 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 107




Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521417 05/22/20 07:40 AM
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Maybe they are getting enough natural forage they are just not that hungry?

Do you have a good supply of forage fish available for them?


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Re: Pellet feeding issues
snrub #521421 05/22/20 08:51 AM
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Snrub I do have pretty good forage at the moment and had the same thought. There’s a good supply of tiny bluegills and I put in a thousand fatheads with the HSB. I’m still seeing fatheads along the shore. But I had read that HSB are aggressive feeders and often prefer pellets over having to work for their food. Maybe that was misinformation.

Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521438 05/22/20 02:51 PM
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Ryan, that's been my experience with HSB. Absolutely love pellets!


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17. 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 107




Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521448 05/22/20 04:05 PM
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Today my channel cats fed heavily. I saw a few agitated HSB in the beginning. None of them took pellets though.

Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521450 05/22/20 04:19 PM
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As Hank Hill remarked of his son Bobby, "That boy ain't right!"

Gotta wonder at the protein content of the feed, catfish are much happier with low protein than HSB. Also, maybe the taste is offputting for HSB and BG.

Last edited by anthropic; 05/22/20 05:22 PM.

8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17. 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 107




Re: Pellet feeding issues
anthropic #521463 05/22/20 09:31 PM
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Anthropic I believe it’s 42 percent protein but I’ll look at the bag next time. Not sure what feed to try next. I’ll have to order it as I doubt I can source locally. Anyone care to make a suggestion? Optimal bluegill?

Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521465 05/22/20 10:40 PM
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That amount of protein should be fine for HSB and BG, so maybe the issue is taste. Optimal BG is a bit pricey, but mine love it. Another great product is AquaMax MVP. I'm sure there are other good ones, but those are my go tos. If the HSB and BG won't eat either, something is wrong.

Last edited by anthropic; 05/22/20 10:42 PM.

8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17. 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 107




Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521484 05/23/20 10:50 AM
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If they take the pellet and spit it out, simply put-they ain't liking it. Give Dustin a call at Optimal and talk with him about palatability and what goes in to their formulations. Their trial last fall was about this topic. Call optimal, Dustin "usually" takes the call/will answer. BG and HSB should be showing up within 10 days, maybe small numbers but they will come.


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Re: Pellet feeding issues
Snipe #521510 05/23/20 08:52 PM
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Thanks snipe. I’ll give him a call.

Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521524 05/24/20 09:30 AM
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Looking over one of Bill Cody's old posts I ran across this study which I had not seen in a while. It just cements the idea that better quality feed is definitely worth a little extra cost. Unless a person is just feeding for the pleasure of feeding and does not care about growth at all, the higher quality feed beats out the cheap stuff on both growth rates as well as cost per pound of gain.

Greg Grimes fish food trials


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Re: Pellet feeding issues
snrub #521527 05/24/20 09:44 AM
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Originally Posted by snrub
Looking over one of Bill Cody's old posts...
Always a good idea! High quality feed gives you much better growth, but it also simultaneously reduces the harmful waste products that are produced by low quality feeds.

Last edited by brah; 05/24/20 09:45 AM.

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Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521553 05/24/20 10:53 PM
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Ryan, if Dustin can't get Optimal to you due to the virus, private msg me. I've got some extra.


8ac, full 3/16. CNBG, RES, FHM 10/15; TP 5/16; FLMB 6/16. 100 12" NLMB & 1k GSH 10/17. 150# TP & 70 HSB 5/18. 1k PK 11/18. 100# TP 4/19, 200# RBT 12/19, 10k TFS 3/20, 100#TP 5/20, 107




Re: Pellet feeding issues
anthropic #521602 05/25/20 05:30 PM
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Anthropic thank you!! I’m going to call him tomorrow. I’ll let you know. Thanks again!!

Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521632 05/26/20 09:00 AM
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HSB easily take to pellets. Any chance the pellets have mold - if so get rid of them.

One clarification about HSB - they are one predator fish that can process carbs to some extent. They can do fine on BG food - 32 % is fine. You do have to watch the carbs however as HSB on higher carb diets will get morbidly obese.

Last edited by ewest; 05/26/20 10:10 AM.















Re: Pellet feeding issues
anthropic #521645 05/26/20 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by anthropic
Ryan, if Dustin can't get Optimal to you due to the virus, private msg me. I've got some extra.

Optimal is shipping. I had a bag of Jr. delivered last week.

Re: Pellet feeding issues
Ryan M #521687 05/26/20 10:28 PM
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I have not ordered optimal yet because I’m about to go away and want to time the shipment for when I get back. It’s been interesting to watch the HSB. They will occasionally rise up as if they are going to take a pellet but then turn away at the last second. I’m convinced that they either are too preoccupied with the fatheads right now or they don’t like the smell of the pellets - or both. I actually have some of the cheaper pellets from tractor supply and have tried those too just to test and I would say they have little interest in those either. Time will tell if optimal can get them to eat. I’m hopeful since I really enjoy feeding my fish. My channels are doing great. They are pigs and don’t seem to care what I throw at them.


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