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If I can source some and they spawn, I will have to share them locally. I submitted a request to join a Facebook group dedicated to catfishing where I will see if anyone can help me out. Its a longshot, but I'll try anyway.

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Have you thought about a small road trip to Illinois with a large cooler, some frozen bottles of water, and a small aerator?


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."

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I did, but I decided against it. Actually, was looking at Missouri. Thought that I had a friend who might be going there but that did not materialize.

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No takers so I'll stock CC.

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Originally Posted by RAH
Well, I have given up trying to find blue catfish in Indiana for my 3rd pond (about 1/3 acre). Will stock 10 CC, 10 black crappie, and 10 RES next spring. Hopefully, the CC will grow large and eat crappie. The FHM and lake chubsuckers have had 3 years to reproduce, but I have very few plants due to the hard clay bottom. Even my lotus is struggling. Will try to add some branch piles this fall or winter. Will hopefully finish up my 4th pond tomorrow and cap the bottom drain. I am not happy with the depth, but the bottom is unworkable due to springs that seep constantly from the side opposite the dam. Hopefully, I was successful sealing sand veins under the dam, but it was hard to keep the walls of the 2' wide core trench from filling with sand washed in by water trapped in the veins. Time will tell... It's been a long hall with my small equipment.


Like you I would prefer the blues but I think this can work if the CC are of sufficient size and weight. If you stock CC at 20 inches length, they will be more focused on fish for prey. 10 of them would put you 75 lbs per acre. That's more than what would be required from other predators but I think it fits more appropriately with CC as apex predator. The Crappie will be effective predators of fish below the lengths the CC will be concentrating. I like approaches that stretch the envelope like this and will follow with interest.


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


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I am patient, so I will start with small fish and allow them to grow. If the black crappie reproduce too fast while the CC are growing, then I have a neighbor who would love to remove as many as I will let him keep.

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It is likely that recruitment will be subdued in the early going due to large standing crops of FHM and LCS. So probably nothing worry about. I was thinking that at the stock rate you might introduce adult RES and BCP. RES even fingerlings will probably recruit the year of introduction. The BCP probably won't until the following year at the soonest but probably later. I could see the CC growing into the desired lengths for predation before substantial recruitment happens.

Last edited by jpsdad; 08/09/21 08:44 AM.

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


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I am more worried about a crappie explosion before the catfish get going, but I really was hoping so few added CC, BC, and RES in a pond full of forage would leave each other alone long enough to spawn. Planning to buy the smallest size fish available and hoping 10 of each will be enough to eventually pull off spawns for each species. If it looks like any of these are not doing that, I can always stock a few larger size individuals later.

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RAH, in my experience, stocking less fish and hoping that they will reproduce and fill the void has never worked like planned. One pond stocked like that had to be rotenoned and started over with the recommended amount of small fish. That was 3 years lost then waiting another 2 years after pushing the reset button for the small fish to grow big enough to harvest.

I have a source for what they say are 1 1/2# minimum Channel Cats but the last time I picked up CC from them they were actually 2#-5#.

We can deliver any sized fish order, but since there isn't any profit in the small orders we have to charge either a minimum $$ order amount or charge for actual loaded miles traveled. The overhead is the same whether 5 fish are delivered or 1,000 fish are delivered.

Last edited by esshup; 08/09/21 11:53 AM.

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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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I had pretty good luck stocking my second pond with low numbers of FHM, GSH, LCS, RES, YP, and SMB. Maybe I was just lucky? I stocked my first pond with the hatchery-recommended numbers of RES, BG, CC, and LMB, and only had nice fish once the pond recovered from a winter fish kill that reduced numbers and eliminated the CC. I now have lots of eating size BG and some lunker LMB (along with healthy eating size LMB), but that is with removal of 60 eating size BG and ten 8-12" LMB per year. Jones hatchery now has a drop-off site not too far from me, so that makes getting a few fish cost effective. My kids drive by Clear Creek when they come to visit which is also a possibility. When I stocked my SMB, I got 10 from Clear Creek and 10 from Jones to maybe increase the genetic diversity.

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Originally Posted by RAH
I had pretty good luck stocking my second pond with low numbers of FHM, GSH, LCS, RES, YP, and SMB. Maybe I was just lucky? I stocked my first pond with the hatchery-recommended numbers of RES, BG, CC, and LMB, and only had nice fish once the pond recovered from a winter fish kill that reduced numbers and eliminated the CC. I now have lots of eating size BG and some lunker LMB (along with healthy eating size LMB), but that is with removal of 60 eating size BG and ten 8-12" LMB per year. Jones hatchery now has a drop-off site not too far from me, so that makes getting a few fish cost effective. My kids drive by Clear Creek when they come to visit which is also a possibility. When I stocked my SMB, I got 10 from Clear Creek and 10 from Jones to maybe increase the genetic diversity.


Rah, if it worked for you in the past, go for it! It just hasn't worked for us is all. The fishery hasn't been as good as customers expected in the time frame they expected it. Others that have followed our recommendations on stocking rates for their expectations are happy.


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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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My timeframe maybe longer than most. I have 300 years of plans to execute,

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Will gambusia (mosquito fish) be good in a black crappie/CC pond? I have had FHM and lake chubsucker in my 3rd pond (about 1/3 acre) for a couple years. Was planning to add 10 each of RES, CC, and black crappie next spring (unable to source blue catfish). Am wondering if adding gambusia first might be desirable to act as both forage and to eat some of the predator eggs to limit over production of predators? Is there any downside? I could let the gambusia multiply for a year (or more) before adding the RES, CC, and crappie. Big issue for me right now is that plants are very sparse in the pond due to pure clay bottom and banks. I will be putting in some large hollow sycamore logs once the ground freezes up. Thanks in advance for your input!

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They have done well in my pond. They in my opinion won’t venture far from shore to eat many eggs, they live in inches of water in my pond due to predators. Throw few sticks along shoreline and more than likely they will survive. Not sure the BCP will go that shallow to eat them. If your pond is fertile the crappie will thrive in open water with all the critters that a good bloom will bring. The CC will eat the BCP out in open water so you may have to give the BCP a head start. I also added FHM and golden shiners

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RAH,

I don't think there is any downside to having GAMs in your planned combination. If they reduce recruitment of CC and BC, (something they could do by competition with and predation of fry), then this would likely help to moderate overpopulation. GAMs reproduce a lot and their offspring reproduce in the same year if they are born soon enough. They don't have spawning behaviors that work against them. The young are usually born swimming with yolks fully absorbed. That's a big advantage that allows a population decimated overwinter to recover to capacity by midsummer. Speaking only from my limited experience, if LMB are present, they need lots of cover to persist. They maintain populations in ponds near me particularly where there is abundant APW. One pond, which in some respects is very much like the combination you plan, has CC, GSF, and BG. Both GSF and BG are very abundant in this pond and large enough to consume GAMs but the GAMs hold their own going on now for 3 consecutive years. They reach (I think) densities that saturate the ponds ability to carry them. Every square meter has hundreds of GAMs by September within eyeshot of the shore. I see them in water much deeper than inches and I see sprays of small fish that I think are Gams evading predators too far from shore to positively identify as GAMs. I also see lots of schools of small fish that move around the open spaces disturbing the surface feeding. I think they are GAMs ... but can't say for sure.

There is never a great standing weight of GAMs even though they are numerous. But GAMs grow fast reaching reproductive age in about a month. Even adults can eat more than their body weight each day (Adult females put that energy into growth and reproduction). The point I am making is that this ravenous appetite means they are either growing very fast or that they are having a lot of offspring. So even a small standing weight can contribute as much as 10% of its standing weight (every day) to mortality and maintain the population biomass.

As far north as you are ... and in a shallow pond ... you may have significant winter losses but provided you can get 1/2 lb or so to survive each year they will rise like a phoenix to numbers that are no less than remarkable providing many, many times their overwintering standing weight in forage.

Last edited by jpsdad; 01/02/22 08:27 PM.

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


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Not really a shallow pond. Max depth probably 12 feet.

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Anyone else that can weigh in on adding gams to a future black-crappie/CC pond?

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Added structure on the ice for catfish that will be added in spring. They will sink wherever they end up.

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Rah
Did you find a source for blues?

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No I did not find a source. Will have to settle for channels.

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As tough as catfish are you aught to think about a road trip to Overton here in Texas

Last edited by Pat Williamson; 01/26/22 06:16 PM.
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Overtons website says they are in stock now 6-8” for$1.50

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Don't think that they ship to Indiana.

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Originally Posted by RAH
Don't think that they ship to Indiana.

Probably won’t but like I said road trip! Can’t hardly kill them things

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I heartily agree with the "Road Trip" advice!

When we get past Covid and start having Pond Boss meetings again, maybe the organizers should rotate venues around some of the major fish suppliers?

The people that road trip down for the Pond Boss event can all bug out afterwards with a load of specialty fish that are not available in their neck of the woods.

I bet the suppliers would even like to sequentially process a bunch of orders on a Monday morning.

Just spit-balling ideas for our intrepid moderators!

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