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#547749 05/11/22 04:33 PM
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DrLuke Online Content OP
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I the spirit of sharing and learning, which is the core of the Pond Boss forum family, I thought I'd share the results of the shock survey we had done on April 29, 2022. I used Bjornson Pond Management again, which is one of the Pond Boss advertisers. Kevin Bjornson (the owner) works frequently with Nate Herman who is also a PB forum member and contributor. They also did a shock survey for us in Sept 2017, after which we did some corrective stocking and pond tweaks. They did a great job and are really fun to work with! For any members in Iowa, they come highly recommended.
I had the repeat survey done for two reasons. One, because I wanted to see 'what's going on down there' and get a feel for who's growing and how well, and if any of the things we've been 'doing' to our pond are having the hoped impact. Second, because we had that winter kill last spring (of 2021, which I posted about). I wondered about the impact on fish numbers and classes of the various species we have. So that sets the table.
First, a few pictures will tell most of the tale:

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


"Gold medals aren't really made of gold. They're made of sweat, determination, and a hard-to-find alloy called guts." - Dan Gable, Olympic Gold medalist, wrestling
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Data from all the LMB they gathered data on and tagged:
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


"Gold medals aren't really made of gold. They're made of sweat, determination, and a hard-to-find alloy called guts." - Dan Gable, Olympic Gold medalist, wrestling
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and here are the relative weights:
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


"Gold medals aren't really made of gold. They're made of sweat, determination, and a hard-to-find alloy called guts." - Dan Gable, Olympic Gold medalist, wrestling
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Good relative weights on those bass! From what I could see, nice bluegills, too.

Do you cull fish, particularly LMB? How about feeding?


7ac 2015 CNBG RES FHM 2016 TP FLMB 2017 NLMB GSH L 2018 TP & 70 HSB PK 2019 TP RBT 2020 TFS TP 25 HSB & 250 F1,L,RBT -206 2021 TFS TP GSH L,-312 2022 GSH TP CR TFS -110




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We had low LMB numbers, but saw all class sizes. We had strong BG numbers, and had heavy numbers in the 5-7" range. We had few BCP, and the ones we did see seemed stunted (big eyes). We got a couple of large GSH (golden shiners). No perch. No RES. No HSB.


"Gold medals aren't really made of gold. They're made of sweat, determination, and a hard-to-find alloy called guts." - Dan Gable, Olympic Gold medalist, wrestling
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Nice results and pics ! Time to think about harvest of small or skinny LMB. Note the high RW of longer LMB. Harvest some in the length where RW are low or falling as there is to much competition for food in that size.

Last edited by ewest; 05/11/22 06:01 PM.















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Originally Posted by anthropic
Good relative weights on those bass! From what I could see, nice bluegills, too.

Do you cull fish, particularly LMB? How about feeding?

We had been planning to start culling under performing LMB in the 10-12" range last summer, but then the winter kill happened. Our numbers are low enough we maybe stock a few more, to boost genetics.
We do feed, TH hanging feeder. I feed from about May thru Oct, once the water temp is over 50°. I feed a mix of Optimal BG and bass pellets (buy bag of each, hand mix), twice a day 1-2 second throws (1 to start then more once they are feeding well).

I had always hoped to catch a LMB of 5 lbs, so we're pretty excited to have shocked up that 4.88 lb bass. The boss caught a 10+" BG recently that was 1 lb even. We both loved that. She holds most of our pond records on fish size.


"Gold medals aren't really made of gold. They're made of sweat, determination, and a hard-to-find alloy called guts." - Dan Gable, Olympic Gold medalist, wrestling
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Those are some fat fish Dr. Luke. So the fish kill just took the right amount of fish spurring the growth of all remaining? Very impressive survey.


Common sense is not so common - Voltaire

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wow, thanks for the great pictures! What is the plan to get more YP or HSB in the pond? Or is it too late with those mega-mouthed LMB in there?

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Originally Posted by canyoncreek
wow, thanks for the great pictures! What is the plan to get more YP or HSB in the pond? Or is it too late with those mega-mouthed LMB in there?

Interestingly, we are catching perch while fishing. And the boss even caught a 10.25" YP that was 1/2 lb in the past week. So we still have them. However, we are planning to over stock more YP this spring while our LMB numbers are low. That was actually part of the recommendations given with the formal report, based on the discussion Kevin, Nate and Wes and I had.
I'm changing gears on my bonus fish. Never did hook a HSB in the 4 years they were in there. No slight on HSB, we only stocked 25. But I am going to try SMB this time and see how they do.
We also plan to add some RES. We catch one occasionally, and our black spot is very nearly gone, but I don't mind pumping up the numbers a little. Plus RES can be a nifty bonus catch too.


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Originally Posted by jpsdad
Those are some fat fish Dr. Luke. So the fish kill just took the right amount of fish spurring the growth of all remaining? Very impressive survey.

Yeah, I got a lesson in max biomass for my pond. Mother nature "helped me" cull...everything. But for the survivors, the extra groceries have been helpful.

'Experience is what you get when you don't get what you want'. *sad face*


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No need for a sad face. All that was lost was the opportunity to harvest those that succumbed. The track looks good now. When you last surveyed, were a similar number of fish brought up? That looked like a pretty good sampling.

I loved that you tagged some fish. You will be able to track progress on them.


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so the shock boat could not shock up perch because they stay deep?

And do you suspect HSB are still in your pond or you think somehow they died in the 'kill' event? I would think if they move around in open water in schools that they also could escape the shock boat too.

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Originally Posted by jpsdad
No need for a sad face. All that was lost was the opportunity to harvest those that succumbed. The track looks good now. When you last surveyed, were a similar number of fish brought up? That looked like a pretty good sampling.

I loved that you tagged some fish. You will be able to track progress on them.

We had zero LMB shocked at the 2017 survey, and weren't catching any either. BG were skewed to the 4-6" range. BCP were bigger (length) but very thin. No other species found, and lower numbers overall.

I have wanted to start tagging for a while now, for data tracking on growth rates and catchability.


"Gold medals aren't really made of gold. They're made of sweat, determination, and a hard-to-find alloy called guts." - Dan Gable, Olympic Gold medalist, wrestling
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Originally Posted by canyoncreek
so the shock boat could not shock up perch because they stay deep?

And do you suspect HSB are still in your pond or you think somehow they died in the 'kill' event? I would think if they move around in open water in schools that they also could escape the shock boat too.

Nate and I discussed that. His experience is HSB are not very tolerant of low oxygen sats, so were likely the first casualties of the winter kill. There could be a monster HSB lurking but seems unlikely.

And yes, I guess YP can be a challenge to collect unless present in dense numbers. This also influenced our decision to overstock more now, while LMB numbers are low. I really like YP and would love to see them build their numbers up.


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When I had my main pond shocked several years ago, we brought up a ton of Yellow Perch; this would have been in 5-8' of water, so maybe Doc's pond is deeper.


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Water conductivity, temp and depth all effect/limit shock surveys. That is part of the art of shock survey analysis.
















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Originally Posted by DrLuke
Originally Posted by canyoncreek
And do you suspect HSB are still in your pond or you think somehow they died in the 'kill' event? .

Nate and I discussed that. His experience is HSB are not very tolerant of low oxygen sats, so were likely the first casualties of the winter kill. There could be a monster HSB lurking but seems unlikely. .

In addition HSB are more active (higher metabolism) at cooler temps so they also use up more O2 being active in winter. That plus low O2 during possible winter kill will often get the more active fish first. Also (likely not an issue here) HSB can metabolize carbohydrates from fish food that BG and LMB can't so they can become morbidly obese on fish food carbs. This makes them more apt to have O2 problems.
















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Originally Posted by Sunil
When I had my main pond shocked several years ago, we brought up a ton of Yellow Perch; this would have been in 5-8' of water, so maybe Doc's pond is deeper.

My pond averages around 8', but has lots of variation, including a 14' valley. But my suspicion is my YP numbers are very low, so the chances of shocking one up is also very low.
We hope the supplemental stocking will help get them established and reproducing.


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I have to enter my thoughts here..
We spend thousands upon thousands on electrofishing equipment and then measure and weigh in inches and pounds/ounces.
mm and grams are in order. It's been proven to me time after time that pounds/ounces/inches can create up to a 15% error in WR and bad assumptions are made because corners were cut on accuracy.
This is something I don't think is "good" in fisheries management, if it isn't as accurate as possible, how can you adjust or manage with faulty data????
Sorry guys, I'm OCD with this particular step.

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Originally Posted by Snipe
I have to enter my thoughts here..
We spend thousands upon thousands on electrofishing equipment and then measure and weigh in inches and pounds/ounces.
mm and grams are in order. It's been proven to me time after time that pounds/ounces/inches can create up to a 15% error in WR and bad assumptions are made because corners were cut on accuracy.
This is something I don't think is "good" in fisheries management, if it isn't as accurate as possible, how can you adjust or manage with faulty data????
Sorry guys, I'm OCD with this particular step.

I did watch Nate tare his scale. I also try to examine each fish's body condition as they are measured and weighed, mainly to improve my ability to judge healthy relative weight fish.
I guess I could use a standard weight to confirm calibration. I do have some standard weights I use on my arrow scale when setting up my hunting arrows. Would that be sufficient to verify accuracy?


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Water clarity will also affect the results. The fish that may be shocked and are deeper that can't be seen will be passed by. I've spend a number of hours on that boat!! LOL Great people.


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Originally Posted by Snipe
I have to enter my thoughts here..
We spend thousands upon thousands on electrofishing equipment and then measure and weigh in inches and pounds/ounces.
mm and grams are in order. It's been proven to me time after time that pounds/ounces/inches can create up to a 15% error in WR and bad assumptions are made because corners were cut on accuracy.
This is something I don't think is "good" in fisheries management, if it isn't as accurate as possible, how can you adjust or manage with faulty data????
Sorry guys, I'm OCD with this particular step.

Kenny, I agree that the degree of precision is very important. Like you I would prefer mm and grams because these units lend to very good degree of precision for fish that are > 5" in length. mm and grams are easy to read from scales and tapes.

That said. A similar degree of precision can be obtained if one has sufficiently sensitive measuring tools. For example, if a English unit tape is divided into 1/32 of an inch AND if the one taking the measurement doesn't take shortcuts of rounding then the degree of precision is actually just a tiny bit better than mm. Even so, a tape with mm is the hammer and the 1/32" scale is a rock. I would much rather drive a nail with hammer and than a rock because it is the most appropriate tool. So same goes for the tape. Your measurement will not need conversion into decimal notation and it is far easier and faster to take the measurement very accurately with a tape graded in mm.

A weight scale needs to have sufficient sensitivity to measure small increments of change. Some scales display a greater degree of precision than they are actually sensitive to. But if grams are the degree of precision sought, the scale must be sensitive to 1 gram increments. So this is easily checked (though most instruments declare sensitivity) by adding the increment to an existing weighed item and checking to see if the increment registers. If measuring in pounds on a decimal scale the scale must provide measurement in 1 thousandths of lbs and be sensitive to register .001 lb increments.

The problem with rounding and degree of precision is very much exacerbated with fish at the smaller end of the spectrum becoming more muted with large fish.

In looking over the LMB in the table, I think the surveyors may have attained a very acceptable degree of precision. The length measurements seem to be incremented to the nearest .05". So the tape was probably 1/10 graded with possible 1/2 ticks. Whether the tenths were half ticked or not, the data collected suggests that the measurements take were taken with care either to the finest degree of precision graded on the tape or possibly making additional effort to record precision finer than the tape graduation. The nearest .05 (1/20th) inch is a little larger than a millimeter by ~ 0.27 mm. So on the first fish, assuming a very accurate measurement to the nearest .05 inch the variation or uncertainty in relative terms is less than 9 parts in 10,000. Don't know if this alarmed you but the number of exactly 13" did catch my attention. With degree of precision at 0.05 this did seem a little odd but that doesn't of course mean that they were not 13" to the nearest 0.05"

On the weight end, increments of 0.01 lbs is about 4.5 times greater than grams. Assuming the sensitivity to 0.01 lbs the uncertainty of measurement relative to a gram sensitive instrument is about 4.5 parts in 1000 for first and lightest fish. The parts uncertainty for larger fish is less than that. All in all, there was sufficient precision here I think but one surely does not want to pull out a fish de-liar and round to the nearest quarter or half inch. This would yield results that are not very accurate.

Last edited by jpsdad; 05/14/22 11:26 AM.

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