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Strip pit concern
#524580 08/11/20 04:30 PM
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Hi I own part of a 55ft deep crystal clear 10 acre strip pit that I have stocked and have reproducing smallmouth in Oklahoma. The pit is full of bluegill and bass and the fishing is fantastic. My pit overflows year round and flows through similar strip pits two miles down stream. The other strip pits are absolutely loaded with crawdads everywhere you look. There are small numbers of pumpkinseeds, very few bluegill and minnow-like fish everywhere. We have yet to see one fish that is big enough to catch and have not been able to catch any fish. The ph level was normal. Should I be concerned about there not being any big fish or is this a great opportunity to stock smallmouth bass? I have heard that it was full of crappie at one time. Thanks for any input.

Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524581 08/11/20 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Brownbassin7
Hi I own part of a 55ft deep crystal clear 10 acre strip pit that I have stocked and have reproducing smallmouth in Oklahoma. The pit is full of bluegill and bass and the fishing is fantastic. My pit overflows year round and flows through similar strip pits two miles down stream. The other strip pits are absolutely loaded with crawdads everywhere you look. There are small numbers of pumpkinseeds, very few bluegill and minnow-like fish everywhere. We have yet to see one fish that is big enough to catch and have not been able to catch any fish. The ph level was normal. Should I be concerned about there not being any big fish or is this a great opportunity to stock smallmouth bass? I have heard that it was full of crappie at one time. Thanks for any input.

I'm a little confused about your post. You said the fishing is fantastic but then said you've yet to see any fish that are big enough to catch. Are you saying you want to stock the pits that your 10 acre strip flow into? Or are you saying the 10 acre strip has lost its good fishing and you want to restock it?

Re: Strip pit concern
Steve_ #524582 08/11/20 05:03 PM
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I apologize for the confusion. The strip pit I currently own part of has great fishing. The strip pits down stream that I am interested in only have small fish.

Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524586 08/11/20 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Brownbassin7
I apologize for the confusion. The strip pit I currently own part of has great fishing. The strip pits down stream that I am interested in only have small fish.

Ahh, I gotcha. The first question I'd ask would be why the other strip pits below yours are void of decent sized fish. I'd assume some of the ones you have in your pit would find their way into the others ones and repopulate on their own? Or are they not connected enough for them to travel to the other ones? Either way, I don't see any harm in trying to add SMB to the other ones. With all the crayfish you mentioned, they'd probably do very well, assuming they have the same water quality as your 10 acre one.

Re: Strip pit concern
Steve_ #524591 08/11/20 07:39 PM
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The strips are completely connected by small streams especially after rains. I was just shocked that there does not appear to be any kind of population of bass and wanted to make sure I wasn’t missing something before I purchased the property.

Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524596 08/11/20 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Brownbassin7
The strips are completely connected by small streams especially after rains. I was just shocked that there does not appear to be any kind of population of bass and wanted to make sure I wasn’t missing something before I purchased the property.

Yeah that's strange how none of your bass have made it to the other ones. If the other pits are similar to your big one, I don't see a problem with adding SMB to them.

Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524629 08/12/20 02:00 PM
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I fish some sand pits/strip mines that connect during high water periods and isolate during low water. There might be a hot bite on one while nothing on the other - sometimes during the same time/same day you might be able to view 100's of fish on one while you see 0 fish on the other. How have you sampled the downstream waters? Fishing? Underwater camera? Trapping? Word of mouth? Often in deep, clear water pits the fish will avoid being seen at all costs, because they are programmed to avoid birds who easily pick them off from above. Trow a large stick over a school of sun basking shallow bluegill in a sand pit during a warm afternoon and watch the water boil. You'll see 100 bluegill vanish. They are truly unique bodies of water and provide some challenging fishing at times!

Last edited by Matzilla; 08/12/20 02:09 PM.

Mat Peirce
1.25 acre southeast Iowa pond
LMB, BG, YP, WE, HSB, RES, BCP
Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524652 08/12/20 09:41 PM
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BrownBassin7....if possible share some pics of the strip ponds. I've always been interested in quarry ponds and such. I fished one as a kid. They are cool, but I suppose present their own unique challenges.

https://www.wired2fish.com/bank-fishing/fishing-rock-quarry-pits/


Fishing has never been about the fish....

[Linked Image from vgy.me] [Linked Image from vgy.me]
Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524678 08/13/20 04:27 PM
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You may have otters or flatheads, or Blue cats in the lower ponds cleaning them out of sizable fish, if its otters they will be in yours before you know it cleaning it out.
I have a few old mine pits that I fish in, deep and a lot of fun but we also have a few higher up in the hills that will not support fish for whatever reason, Ive thrown some fish in them just to get things started and they die right off within the hour.


All the really good ideas I've ever had came to me while I was milking a cow.
Re: Strip pit concern
Matzilla #524722 08/14/20 08:20 PM
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Thanks for the replies. We have fished in the pits snorkeled and used an underwater camera. Not one bass has been seen of any size and cannot even get a bite from a ned rig. One things I have noticed is that one cove overflows year round forming a creek that ends up in the lake. We had a two years flood last year that caused us to loose majority of our bass. We assume they just followed the moving water. I have not seen any otters or evidence of any but I will be on the look out. My phone won’t let me upload pictures at this time but I’ll continue to work on it. Thank you.

Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524723 08/14/20 08:29 PM
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Here is an aerial. They are connect by pipes. They combine for about 7 acres.

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Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524775 08/17/20 06:49 AM
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According to THE Pond Boss(Lusk) , 90% of fish try to go upstream during high water events. But, if they stay small, it is generally due to properly sized groceries.


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: Strip pit concern
Dave Davidson1 #524859 08/18/20 11:04 AM
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Hmmm.... I guess my next step would be to make sure there is forage besides the millions of crawdads. Anybody have experience with Shad in a clear water set up? I have attempted to stock Shad in my current set up but believe they become food very quick. I thought maybe this would be the right to to attempt without there being any predators. I’m concerned about the lack of phytoplankton. The water is extremely clear and constantly has water flowing out of it. Therefore fertilizing the water is not productive. Thanks

Re: Strip pit concern
Brownbassin7 #524864 08/18/20 02:32 PM
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Brown - I've fished pits near Chelsea, Talala and further west out by Skedee - I will back you up that sometimes the fishing is just plain tough and other times its great. There are some pits that we could never seem to catch larger bass in them but always felt they were around. Some of those pits I fished had fair populations of shad but the water was not flowing like yours seem to be - I would say go for it again on the shad. If you ever need a fishing partner let me know!

Re: Strip pit concern
Jambi #524883 08/18/20 08:24 PM
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Jambi- you are right on the money with your strip pits location. We are in the Chelsea area. Maybe you need to come over sometime and see what you think?🤷🏼‍♂️


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