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#538311 07/31/21 04:01 PM
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Well, my Mozambique tilapia stocking was a huge success.
I started with 20# in a half acre pond, they were maybe 1/3-1/2 pound per in late Apr when released.
The adults I can still regularly spot and are likely in the #2+ range, the biggest things in the pond that are not turtles without question.
At least a couple to three dozen, thriving. I will not eat them this year because of known snail/whitegrub issues, and have not sent off a water test to TX A&M yet, but they are eating size very pretty fish!
Cannot wait till they feel safe!

I know have at least three generations, ranging from very new fry to decent juveniles. (3-4" / 1-2" / and ~1")
They seem easy to discern from the perch because of their schooling behavior, their tendency to flip and flash, and a distinctive stripped pattern on anything in excess of an inch.
Likewise the 3"+ ones are displaying distinctive fin coloration and shape certainly not the same as the perch. s well they seem very aggressive toward the perch.

Water is very warm, Count estimate on the thousands would be conservative.

I am seeing a LOT of beds, although I cannot really discern which are perch and which are tilapia, it is assumed the larger are the tilapia.
Likewise I am seeing many sizable areas where the bottom is 95+% clay vs algae. All in all a good sign right?
It certainly seems like even though the pond was in really bad shape, the tilapia were a good idea!

They are breaking ground on our houses next week, so I expect before then end of the season to have power and aeration, and I have arranged with the dirt guy to do some shoreline/edge maintenance while he has excavating experiment on site, soooo much progress. From grappling out what I would estimate to be with no hyperbole, tons of alligator weed behind the CRV, and what remains being scooped out by a track hoe in the next few weeks, only one problem left I can immediately see.

I had originally skimmed off almost all floating mats of FA, and I pulled out countless piles from dragging the bottom. So much in fact I used it to control some erosion spots where the grass is now gleefully growing.

So aside from gloating at progress, why the post?!

Well, because the mats are now double the size they were when I started, in fact now at least 25% of the surface!
In my lay understanding I have a theory, but not sure if someone with more experience could confirm.

There is a great deal of ex-gassing, warm water, a lot of detritus, obvious decomposition, and a lack of oxygen is likely leading to a highly aerobic activity.
I am assuming that my mats (which are 80% floating except there they are accumulating at the edges and staring to grow what looks like "Pond Grass") are largely the result of what fragments of FA are in the water, catching bubbles of the decomposition CO/H2S/ETC and becoming more buoyant?

Likewise I would assume the tilapia are not eating every fiber from the end to end (They are eating, because they ARE growing) so likely nipping low, and each time, leaving the remaining now disconnected free strands, that are doing the same thing, becoming floaters because they are naturally buoyant AND picking up gas....

Is this some sort of typical worse before it gets better?

I plan on nuking it with copper and dye as soon as I can get circulation an aeration, but I do not want to cause so much decomp I suffocate everything.
So though that is the pan, it is still too early to be viable.

This is year 1 for pond maintenance for me, though a voracious learner, I am still quote the novice.
IS the better bottom conditions, but worse top, a normal thing for this time of year and pure herbivore attack strategy?
OR just in general typical for the better bacterial conditions = more gas?

Both?

P.S. Any east Texas folks here every had Mozambique tilapia survive a winter?

Please and thank you.

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Tilapia don't make it through our winters. The latest I have found one still alive was 1 Jan. It was snowing and the fish was up near the spring water.


Brian

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Can you post pictures of the FA to confirm. Every time I put Mozambic tilapia in they ate all the FA..... and I put 50#s in a 6 acre lake and saw no young (bass ate them) . Probably when other pond weeds move in maybe FA won’t be as big an issue. Like Highflyer said tilapia usually don’t survive our winters ..... most of the time
As far as the yellow grubs are concerned... we just remove them and eat the fish . Think they won’t hurt anything just kinda gross.... maybe someone else will comment on that.

Last edited by Pat Williamson; 08/01/21 03:51 PM.
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For the grubs to be surviving in the pond there has to be a snail population. Stock Redear Sunfish to control the snails, that will (in time) eliminate the grubs.


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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
esshup #538349 08/01/21 07:39 PM
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I have red ears and still get the yellow cyst looking things . Are those the same?

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Originally Posted by Pat Williamson
I have red ears and still get the yellow cyst looking things . Are those the same?


Yes, you might not have enough RES in there to control the snails.

Yellow Grubs in fish


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3/4 to 1 1/4 ac pond LMB, SMB, PS, BG, RES, CC, YP, Bardello BG, (RBT & Blue Tilapia - seasonal).
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Attached is what I have been dragging out for months, and what seems to be being torn up / floating. In water, growing *out* of the water, and dried. Like green horse hair mixed with the stuff that looks like snot. Fa was best guess, but could be dead wrong?

Attached Images
PXL_20210804_011901918~2.jpg (150.3 KB, 62 downloads)
PXL_20210804_011802413.NIGHT~2.jpg (46.8 KB, 61 downloads)
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I've done tilapia for the last 2 years or so and have been thrilled with the results. My pond is cleared up and they're great baitfish for my LMB

My kids have a blast catching them too. Usually in the fall we have a couple days we try to catch as many as we can and keep them. They'll freeze out anyways.

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I found another thread here, where a user seemed to be having a similar issue with grass carp. The owner was having an excessive amount of new floating material, guessed by many to be the carp uprooting and otherwise just munching through copious amount of vegetation with disregard for what floated away, because there always seemed more present.

I ordered this last night.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08C7WVZXF?th=1

Will have it hooked up as soon as I get permanent power, I will then nuke it with pond dye first, stronger chemicals if aeration/shading does not work.
It cannot hurt for sure!

Aerator seemed overkill by size, but living and already dead matter in this pond is pretty extreme.
I anticipate when it starts breaking down, it will be a bacterial frenzy.

There will be a track hoe cleaning in the next couple of weeks as they finish up my home dirt work, mostly straightening up the edges, and deepening a few feet on the non dam side.
The pond was originally larger, and filled in via erosion, engineer (son) said the dam should be more than adequate to accommodate another 100K gallons, and we will certainly not be moving 14k cubic feet foot of dirt, so this is going to be a multiple year recovery. But in 6-8 months it will be my front yard and daily care!


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