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Hey everyone, I am about to renovate my 1/8th acre pond to be a 2/3rd acre pond. I got with a local biologist, and he recommended 3 bluegill spawning areas in 1-3 ft depths. I was planning on making them about 10' x 10' each (at 12" pea gravel depth), maybe a little bigger if I only go 8" or so deep with the pea gravel. Basically, I have one truckload to work with, which is about 11-12 cu. yards, or 300 sq. ft. at 12" depth.

Question 1: since the pond will obviously be sloped (roughly a 1:2.5 to 1:3), do I need to specifically make a flat (or "cupped") area for the pea gravel to sit, or can I build a "foundation frame" (like a concrete form for a house foundation), to hold in the gravel?

Question 2: is 8-12" deep good, or should I go thinner or thicker?

Question 3: is three 100 sq. ft. spawning areas good for my 2/3rd acres size, or would I benefit from something different?

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Last edited by BranClanFarm; 06/02/22 10:39 AM.
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Because your planned gravel spawning areas are relatively small, consider first putting down landscape fabric or weed block material under the gravel. This can help keep the gravel from working its way over time into the clay bottom, and 2. It should allow you to use a littler thinner layer of gravel in the spawning beds because the gravel will tend to not blend into the clay bottom.

Another thing I would do is outline at least one outer perimeter of the bed as a test area with cement blocks or similar retention border to keep the gravel edges from blending or moving into areas of the outer adjacent sediment. Over time expect the gravel areas of each spawning area to become infused with organic sediment. It is how aquatic nature works. An annual raking of these gravel areas helps keep the organic better decayed and cleaner. Nest building activities of fish also help keep subsurface spawning areas in better oxygenated condition with less organic buildup.

Last edited by Bill Cody; 06/02/22 11:01 AM.

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I would move the middle bed location to the far end of the pond. Water flow (silting) on top of beds is a large negative. Plus it gives you more diversity in locations (wind and wave action).

See this thread link for BG beds - pics.
Mixed size gravel works best.

https://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthre...spawning+beds&Search=true#Post544778

Last edited by ewest; 06/02/22 11:26 AM.















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Originally Posted by Bill Cody
Because your planned gravel spawning areas are relatively small, consider first putting down landscape fabric or weed block material under the gravel. This can help keep the gravel from working its way over time into the clay bottom, and 2. It should allow you to use a littler thinner layer of gravel in the spawning beds because the gravel will tend to not blend into the clay bottom.

Another thing I would do is outline at least one outer perimeter of the bed as a test area with cement blocks or similar retention border to keep the gravel edges from blending or moving into areas of the outer adjacent sediment. Over time expect the gravel areas of each spawning area to become infused with organic sediment. It is how aquatic nature works. An annual raking of these gravel areas helps keep the organic better decayed and cleaner. Nest building activities of fish also help keep subsurface spawning areas in better oxygenated condition with less organic buildup.

Perfect! I have about 40 feet of 8' wide geo road base fabric that has been in my way for a while, so I will lay that down as a barrier first. I was going to use some 3/4" thick HDPE plastic strips as containment walls (drop material from my work), but the cinder blocks sound like a better option to help hold down the fabric, and create the barrier, so I will pick up some of those. Thanks Bill!

Originally Posted by ewest
I would move the middle bed location to the far end of the pond. Water flow (silting) on top of beds is a large negative. Plus it gives you more diversity in locations (wind and wave action).
See this thread link for BG beds - pics.
Mixed size gravel works best.

Thanks Ed! I was wondering about the locations as well, for that same reason. although the watershed adds very little since the pond is spring fed, I will plan on moving the middle one to the far side. Appreciate the link. I remember seeing it a few months ago, but for the life of me, could not find it, haha! I will also see if my rock yard will do a mixed sized load of pea gravel.

Last edited by BranClanFarm; 06/02/22 11:38 AM.
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Looking at BranClanFarm's layout there poses an additional question for me and will pertain to him, I have no specific beds built for the BG to spawn in, most of my water is pretty deep, but I they have taken up a lot of spawning activities in a shallower cove, way out toward the point where the water flows in at, they are in the middle of spawning activities right now it appears, we have just had about 2 1/2" of rain in the last few days with more on the way, what effect if any does the rain water have washing in across the BG beds, at obviously a different temperature then the existing pond water?
I was told that a big rain event earlier in the year while BC were spawning, enough to change the water temps, would cause them to have a bad spawning cycle, was wondering if it was the same for BG. TIA


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Clean water flow should not be a problem for spawning unless it drops the temp a lot. The big issue is silt washing in on the beds/eggs. If on the other hand if you had a large rain event with cold rain it could cause a delay in the spawn. It just depends - spawning issues caused by large cold rain/flooding events are not uncommon but BG are very adaptable and often have multiple spawns in a summer.
















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Originally Posted by gehajake
Looking at BranClanFarm's layout there poses an additional question for me and will pertain to him

I live in the the lower half of Texas. We don't have any "cold" rain, haha! I mentioned previously, but most of my water comes from a spring. I do have a slight watershed, but it is more of a flooded field that mixes with my pond when it rains heavily, as opposed to water actually flowing into the pond. Even in the winter time, I am not concerned about the temperature in the north end of the pond changing temps any more than the rest of the pond.

Last edited by BranClanFarm; 06/02/22 09:30 PM.

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