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I left them alone till the wiped out (girdled) a 24” dia sweet gum by the pond edge. I don’t like sweet gum trees bu now have to cut it down and dispose of it…. Shot 4 of them in two days. They also will dig up Bahia grass and leave bare patches

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Thanks, I just wanted to be sure and a couple pounds of Tilapia seems a whole lot easier than an algae rake. The guy down the road rakes every year all summer and it comes right back (plus you can eat tilapia - rakes don't grill up near as well).

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They're eating well.

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Another question. The HSB are getting near "hello food" size along with some of the YP & HBG. The forage base is rather insane but it being a smaller BOW I wondered when to start pulling some out and ladder stocking or just keep catch & release another year? I don't want to disrupt anything but I guess the question is what's normal (don't want to wait until there is a problem).

Any ideas appreciated.

Last edited by STP; 07/11/22 09:05 PM. Reason: Edited acronym
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STP, are you asking about both the Yellow Perch and the HSB as far as harvesting?

For the YP, do you know if you are having reproduction and recruitment?


I would let those HSB get substantially bigger just for the fun of catching them, and in consideration of what role the larger HSB would have in controlling the spawns of the HBG and the YP.


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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Both actually, I initially stocked 30 5-6in YP, then followed up last fall with another 20 8-10in. I find it hard to believe there is no recruitment, it looks like every resident found "a room" this past spring outside of the HSB & HBG. If the rain ever stops I'll give it a better look and toss out some minnow traps. I was more thinking long term with ladder stocking this fall, the thought was adding additional perch in the 5-6 range in maybe groups of 20 and (were we to take any out) replacing the HSB as we do.

I did catch a red ear a couple weeks ago so they are in there and have seen a smallmouth or two but they have been elusive (or just not hungry). We got 18 of the RBT to the table so that experiment worked and added 15 tilapia in the 6-7 range for summer "cleaning". The HBG have kept the kids crazy busy but I bend back the barbs and send return them (for now - any chunkier and they might hit the pan as well).

That's where it's at for now, any advice appreciated.

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I just got refreshed on your pond stocking history.

If you are seeing a good bit of pond-born YP, then I would think you could harvest a few. Whether or not you stocked more YP, in my mind, would depend on if those pond-born YP are growing and filling the shoes behind what you harvest. If so, no real need to stock more unless you want to. At some point in the future, you could try and get some new YP genetics in the pond with new YP from a different source.

For the HSB, that's really your call. You can expect them to exceed 24" and 5-6 lbs (granted the pond is a bit smaller....eg. big waters big fish concept) which does take up some biomass.

I saw you put in (4) SMB initially. Did you ever add more? If so, what's the total count, and have they spawned and recruited?


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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Seems like a good call, I went a little untraditional and stocked Brooder shiners and those loser fatheads in mass early on, then walked away for 6mo because "stuff to do". Those buggers went a little nuts so the "command decision" was made fish of size next (5-8 with all species) and no fishing for a year or so. There's not much medium range now that I've been truly able to gauge besides shiners that look like a sardine and may need to be removed. So I tipped the scales some but the 140 of size originals are aren't missing meals.

4SMB went in and I've seen the originals cruising about but never hooked a one, have seen them on beds in the 4-5ft area they "own" so that's positive. I thought of grabbing another 4-6 SMB along with perch this fall, HSB I'm not sure without removing some, those wolves hunt like raptors in the morning and evening (don't seem particularly bright).

I'll try and set some traps this weekend and photo results.

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So you only have the (4) SMB in there? You haven't seen that they spawned and the spawn survived?

With only (4) SMB, potentially, we can't really know if they were all one sex.

I'm very much into SMB, so my opinions are geared towards making them successful, just FYI.


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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Correct 4 went in but were maybe 6in, what I've seen (not caught) on beds were around 8-9in now and appeared quite pleased with themselves albeit uninterested in any sort of bait. At the time Jones' was short on supply and high on cost so I took what I could get. The whole idea was SM/YP/HSB (for laughs and table)/ HBG (for kids with bobbers). I have mixed YP with Fenders and Jones' depending on who has what. I could fairly easily bucket in SM from Seneca lake but have read here - bad idea - so did not consider it. The RES numbers were pretty low so if caught heading back in to do their job.

I don't see a world where SM ever get cheap but I do keep trapping local crayfish from the creek and chucking them in, never seen any damage so my guess is eaten upon arrival.

Thanks for your help, Sunil.

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No LMB - No Catfish, don't care for them.

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You're welcome.

For SMB, I think Fenders is keeping a list of interested customers, so maybe call and put your name on. It's not a commitment on your part, but if they get them, you could buy some more, which I would do.

Regarding relocating some SMB from another body of water, it's not that it won't work, it's just got a reduced chance of success as the transplanted fish have a greater chance of mortality and not adapting to their new digs. If you could catch some SMB from another pond/lake, I would do that. Of course, you need to make sure what's legal. In the case of 'relocating' a fish, I feel the younger the fish, the better chances.

Also, anything you stock now, you have to consider what the dirty dozen HSB may eat.


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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Those 12 HSB have pretty much staked the whole side 5ft or deeper as the killing grounds. Temps are up now but not even a week ago they went on several hunts I saw from the porch that did not end well for whatever was on the other end, not quite Nat'l Geographic filming but plenty of bait out of the water jumping. I'd expect higher water temps to slow them down until fall but Bill Cody said "they never stop eating" and I doubt he's wrong.

I'll get on the horn with Fenders (such nice people) and see what he has cooking in the pot regarding SMB this fall and also get some pics of whatever comes out of the traps (GSH for sure). Unless there's a drastic change there's little doubt enough food is there along with periodic pellets (every other week daily). Just trying to strike a predator/prey/hello frying pan balance.

Thanks so much for your help.

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Also you have the risk of introducing unwanted invasives to the pond by stocking fish from public water unless you take the steps needed to "clean" them and any water that is from that public BOW.

Also talk to Steve at Shelby Fish Farm in Anna, OH. He packages fish in bags for transport. I know he will have a few SMB this Fall, and I know he will have feed trained walleye too. I brought him both. grin


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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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Interesting, I see Walleye on the sites but always wondered how they would do. They'd be a nice asset against the gigantic GSH in there I'm sure and from what I've read they're past reproducing anymore and just another mouth to feed. I did contact Fenders and get in line for another 8SMB and 20YP of size (8in or bigger) maybe a some walleye wouldn't mess much up and every now and then make for an interesting "dude you got walleye in here" question.

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Keep in mind we have not fished this pond until this year with the RBT (not wasting those) but the goal is to get to catch & keep, ladder up as needed. I wouldn't keep a smallmouth though, those are just for the fun.

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At my main 4.5 acre pond, also my first pond, I chose the diversity route as I like to be surprised at what is caught.


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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This is not a fish story, my granddaughter caught what I guess is a HBG crossed with a RES maybe 5in. I didn't have my phone on me but it was oddly silver, fins were all wrong but at first I thought it was a crappie (which I never installed). Do any posters have pics of what that cross would look like? Going on the assumption "just a mutant" but would hate to find out some joker tossed crappie in the pond realizing they are so popular in S. Ohio I could see it though.

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Originally Posted by STP
This is not a fish story, my granddaughter caught what I guess is a HBG crossed with a RES maybe 5in. I didn't have my phone on me but it was oddly silver, fins were all wrong but at first I thought it was a crappie (which I never installed). Do any posters have pics of what that cross would look like? Going on the assumption "just a mutant" but would hate to find out some joker tossed crappie in the pond realizing they are so popular in S. Ohio I could see it though.

Without a picture of that fish it will be impossible to tell. Water clarity will have a big impact on the color of a fish.


www.hoosierpondpros.com


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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 will try and duplicate her success and get a picture but as you all know taking kids or grandkids out fishing you can have the finest gear and somehow the kid with the snoopy or princess pole catches the largest bass in the pond or the elusive muskie that has always been rumored.

And that's the day you decide he/she is "too old for Christmas gifts".

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Get any of the kids or grandkids to help.they will know how.


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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