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anthropic,

I meant to ask everyone that is wise, you are wise, therefore I meant to ask you too!

I agree with you that one crop of BG a year would be unlikely to keep the large LMB supplied with enough "right-sized" forage for optimal weight gain.

However, Snipe worked with the state of Kansas fisheries staff and they were quickly moving northern-strain LMB from fingerlings to 4#+ with koi as the main forage. Rainbow trout would survive more of the year in Indiana than in Texas. Yellow Perch would be a long, tasty snack if they could be supplied in sufficient numbers.

Al has already asked the key "bottom line" question, how much would you spend on your trophy LMB? (So assume no significant budgetary constraints on the forage.)

If you could supplement the main BG forage with some other specialized forage (especially during the period whem "right-sized" BG are scarce), could you raise 20#+ LMB in Indiana?

I have no clue. I am just asking fun questions on Pond Boss!

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BG fecundity as best I recall is not N-S (latitude) dependent. While a BG may produce 5000 fry per spawn in the South (5000 each of 4-5 spawns - total 25000 fry) up North, depending on location, a BG may spawn once but have 25000 fry. I will double check that and verify if possible.

BG and LMB up north have a faster first 6 mths growth rate than down south but that does not equal the longer growth period in the South. The temp at which LMB and BG stop growth due to high temps is far shorter than the non-growth (slow growth) rate up north. These are generalizations and there can be exceptions due to extreme location , altitude , weather etc.

Aggressiveness is a heritable trait in LMB and BG not tied to size and location. IMO there is a lot we don't know about BG and LMB heritable traits including life span (Fla LMB have a longer life span all things being equal) and continue growing until the end. See recent PB mag articles on the rate of genetic change in fish species and related adaptation (newer research indicates that the rate of change can be much faster than historically thought).

Also the fish brain and other functions are not comparable to mammals due to physiology - they don't work the same way. More on this later.

Last edited by ewest; 06/06/22 08:43 AM.















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Interesting stuff Eric


It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
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ewest,

Thanks for all of that additional information!

I am just fine with you including some generalizations. There are so many interacting variables that it would be very difficult to make authoritative statements on some of my broad questions.

I believe I remember the discussion on Pond Boss that you recount in your first paragraph about total BG fecundity being roughly the same in the south and north, but the timing being different.

I thought I also recalled a discussion (on Pond Boss?) about northern-strain LMB living longer than Floridas. Now I don't know if I just remembered it wrong, or if it was some bad internet article that I read!

As regards your BG point. I would think the southern strategy of "fewer BG per spawn with more spawns" would result in larger BG more quickly. The first spawn would have the most forage available to them, and some of the BG should become "right-sized" for trophy LMB sooner.

However, I don't know how we turn that into a management advantage? Could you throw some weed fabric over the prime BG spawning space in a southern pond after the first or second spawn? Would fewer BG gaining weight more rapidly preferentially help the trophy bass more and the smaller bass less?

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Originally Posted by FishinRod
That is a good data point to add, Theo!

I assume the tilapia acted as a primary benefit to the SMB (consumed as forage).

Did the tilapia also clear your water significantly that first season? If so, perhaps they were also a secondary benefit to the SMB if they made it easier for them to see and catch additional forage such as crayfish, etc.?
Primary reason for stocking was FA control, at which they handle, well, handily. SMB (and maybe big YP) forage is second; big eating Tilapia at the end of the season is third for some friends who like eating Tilapia (I will eat them, but they're not my preferred fish).

We don't have enough crawdads to worry about.


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Originally Posted by FishinRod
I thought I also recalled a discussion (on Pond Boss?) about northern-strain LMB living longer than Floridas. Now I don't know if I just remembered it wrong, or if it was some bad internet article that I read!

Northern LMB in the South have a shorter lifespan than Northern LMB up North. Generally speaking, fish live longer up North than in the South.
However, on a Fla vs Northern comparison in an area where both can thrive side-by -side Fla LMB live longer (for example east TX). In Kansas Fla LMB are a no-go - to cold.
















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Thanks Theo!

I find tilapia tastes a little "plain". So if we have tilapia, my wife goes with some of her spicier recipes.

I have only eaten "store bought" tilapia! (Sad, I know.)

Anyone have opinions on the following:

Is fresh from the pond slightly better, or significantly better?

Does catching the tilapia at the end of the season when they are starting to suffer from the cool water affect the taste or texture?

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Rod, at one time I refused to buy tilapia, as I considered them a bit of a trash fish raised in dubious circumstances. Now, though, I am pretty happy with the TP at the store. They are clean and taste about like most other white fleshed fish. Mild, so can be used in most recipes. (I enjoy cooking spicy dishes, whether Cajun, Indian, Chinese, Thai, etc.)

Personally, my absolute favorite way to cook TP is in a Brazilian shrimp & fish stew, "moqueca." You can look it up easily on the internet. Wonderful stuff, rivals gumbo but a very different vibe! The level of heat is controlled by the number of hot peppers used. probably best to start a bit under recipe recommendation since it is easier to add than subtract.

As for catching TP in the pond, I've had little or no success, even with Stubby Steves. Wish I knew the secret.

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Thanks for the additional recipe ideas!

My side of the family all have cast iron stomachs - except for me. frown

The gumbo and jambalaya my wife and I eat would probably get us thrown out of Louisiana!

I remember lots of threads on Pond Boss from the members about using their tilapia for pond management. I don't remember a good one about catching finicky tilapia.

Maybe yours are just so happy in your pond that they don't need to hit any Stubby Steves.

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