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4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
#526147 09/21/20 10:32 AM
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The pond I help manage for my family in SE IA is now nearly 4 years post renovation/rebuild and going strong. It is about 1/2 acre and fluctuates from ~14 feet to 20 feet when at full pool. It was stocked with fatheads and GSH initially and we gave them a full summer and fall to populate the pond while it filled. A heavy rainstorm filled it quickly a couple months after stocking and the GSH exploded in population. My grandfather decided it was a good idea to put some adult BG in there that summer unfortunately frown. It was stocked in early December 2017 with 30 WE. In October of 2018 we added 50 SMB 4-7" and 30 yellow perch.

We run a 100 LPM 12 volt diaphram pump powered by a solar panel and battery bank utilizing a 12" airlit to circulate water in the pond and direct the current towards some pea gravel and rubble areas for spawning. We feed cargill starter diets that are 50% protein and the GSH and yellow perch are very feed trained. The bluegills haven't taken to the feed as much as I anticipated.

We have held the BG population in check with frequent catch/kill and raking the bluegill beds repeatedly during the spawn. The incredible amounts of GSH in the pond keep recruitment down as well. I initially did not expect much YP and SMB recruitment in the pond due to the high numbers of GSH but they have both produced spawns. I believe the airlift and associated current flow has helped in this regard.


I had a couple of hours to kill before a wedding on Saturday, so I took my 6 yr son to the pond and he caught this 16" SMB on a topwater on the second cast and his first walleye about an hour later. Multiple smaller SMB were also caught. He is incredibly passionate about fish/fishing so he was extremely excited to catch his first walleye. It was a magical experience for me to watch. His daddy was so proud!



https://i.imgur.com/P2el4ji.jpg?1

https://i.imgur.com/jvEEbQf.jpg?1

Last edited by ewest; 09/22/20 10:17 AM.
Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526148 09/21/20 11:26 AM
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Great pics! I’m not too far from you, in NE Missouri. We love our similar fishery. I hope to get some WE some day to add in. Hopefully this fall if everything works out. I’d really like to see your solar/battery aeration system. Is it a kit, or did you assemble it from scratch. I have 200w portable panels already. Let me know if you’d be open to showing me your aeration set up.
I’m hoping WE can help control our HBG. We’ve had decent recruitment with our SMB and YP, but nothing near needing to control. Same with the GSH. The HBG crossed with our RES and exploded..
Thanks,
Jeff


6 yr old pond, 1 ac, 15' deep.
RES, YP, GS, FHM (no longer), HBG (way too many), SMB, and HSB (didn’t make it. 0 seen in 5 yrs)
I think that's about all I should put in my little pond.
Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526175 09/22/20 07:23 AM
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I'm not sure which looks better, the happy kid or the fish!

WHy dont you want bluegill? Is it because there are no LMB?


Im going to ask a lot of questions, but only because I'm clueless
Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
SetterGuy #526176 09/22/20 07:49 AM
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Originally Posted by SetterGuy
Great pics! I’m not too far from you, in NE Missouri. We love our similar fishery. I hope to get some WE some day to add in. Hopefully this fall if everything works out. I’d really like to see your solar/battery aeration system. Is it a kit, or did you assemble it from scratch. I have 200w portable panels already. Let me know if you’d be open to showing me your aeration set up.
I’m hoping WE can help control our HBG. We’ve had decent recruitment with our SMB and YP, but nothing near needing to control. Same with the GSH. The HBG crossed with our RES and exploded..
Thanks,
Jeff



I don't have many photos, but I'll describe it the best I can. Shoot me a PM if needed and I can go into more detail or get you links for purchases.

It is not a kit, just things that I pieced together. I use a 300 watt solar panel with a MPPT charge controller that charges a deep cycle/RV battery. An affordable 100 LPM 12 volt linear diaphragm pump from aquatic ecosystem discharges to an airlift that I built and sank in the pond. I am not using an airstone in the airlift (got tired of cleaning/replacing), just some holes drilled in 1" pvc which is mounted in the airlift about 48" below the surface. The airlift itself is connected to a bucket full of concrete and draws water from about 3 feet off the bottom in 12 feet of water. The airlift is 12" pvc that elbows into a tee/breather (to allow air to leave and water to continue out). You can kind of see it in the background of the picture links I have posted above. Fluctuating water levels impact its flow rate slightly when it drops below the top of the pipe outlet but it does a good job when fully submerged as long as the breather pipe is out of the surface.

I have it directed at some spawning substrate. It creates an eddy under the dock and will push pellets on the surface 15-20 feet away from the outlet. We run it during the day and it shuts down at night once the battery falls below a certain voltage. I have another panel that I am going to install and will likely upgrade to a couple golf cart batteries at some point and plan to upgrade to a larger air pump as well.

GSH school up in the eddy and are periodically marauded by packs of SMB and YP. Especially during feeding time. It sure is fun to watch!

Last edited by Acoursey; 09/22/20 08:00 AM.
1 member likes this: SetterGuy
Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
CityDad #526177 09/22/20 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by CityDad
I'm not sure which looks better, the happy kid or the fish!

WHy dont you want bluegill? Is it because there are no LMB?



Bluegill and SMB/YP do not always work well together. Bluegill compete with them for food, prey upon eggs/fingerlings, and are not easily eaten by SMB/YP. The young BG are likely eaten by YP, WE, and SMB but they quickly grow to a point where they aren't beneficial. Raking the nests daily has really helped to keep them in check.

Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526178 09/22/20 08:27 AM
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That second pic of your son(?) with the Smallie is one for the ages!!

You should send that into Pond Boss!


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Sunil #526180 09/22/20 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Sunil
That second pic of your son(?) with the Smallie is one for the ages!!

You should send that into Pond Boss!



Do I just need to upload it to the image gallery?

Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526182 09/22/20 10:09 AM
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Send an email to Bob with a note and attach the pic. Bob has done personal pond stories - so send him the link to this thread or copy and paste the history from the thread.

I sent a note to Bob with the pic.

Last edited by ewest; 09/22/20 10:35 AM.















Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526194 09/22/20 12:37 PM
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[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


Excerpt from Robert Crais' "The Monkey's Raincoat:"
"She took another microscopic bite of her sandwich, then pushed it away. Maybe she absorbed nutrients from her surroundings."

Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526206 09/22/20 07:29 PM
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I think that picture is tantalizing. The smile on the foreground will make it impossible to not stop and read the article. The tantalizing white thing in the water behind it will lead to a great opportunity to write up what this air exchanger or lifter or whatever it is and how it helps your pond. I don't think anyone has discussed or shown pictures or diagrams of this. I am not clear on its benefits or in my case with a tiny pond if we had a smaller version of that if it still would do some good. 12" pvc isn't easy to come by here and is pricey. Would a scaled down version work? Tell us more!

Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526217 09/23/20 06:42 AM
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I've seen similar designs used in marinas to keep boat slips or dock areas clear of floating debris and vegetation, such as duckweed. Would also add to the aeration on a pond to an extent, moreso if you used smaller bubbles via an airstone or something similar.

Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526229 09/23/20 01:12 PM
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I've attached an optimized version that is floating and utilizes 3" PVC. Larger the pipe and airflow, greater the water flow. The air should be delivered at 32-48" depending on air flow and regenerative blowers/high cfm pumps are best.

My version is more similar to the dutch airlift designs and uses an elbow at the top followed by a tee (breather pipe), this version directs all of the flow in one direction and can be directed with a 45 degree elbow downward or to the sides

Attached Files
airlift.png (113.47 KB, 38 downloads)
Re: 4 years into a SMB/WE/YP/GSH/BG pond
Acoursey #526230 09/23/20 01:13 PM
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Performance and design characteristics of airlift pumps for field applications
November 1994World Aquaculture 25(4):51-55


William A. Wurts Sam G Mcneill Douglas G Overhults



See this article for more info


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