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Originally Posted by anthropic
Ethan from Overton's came out, along with a couple of helpers, to deploy artificial fish habitat. Pond about 30" below full pool, lowest level I've ever experienced, but this was actually helpful in placement of structure.

Focused on dock area, fallen trees, feeders, and corners of the dam. Small "bushes" in shallows, "trees" in deeper water. Had to keep in mind that wherever would likely be 24-30" deeper in a few months.

One thing I greatly appreciated was the use of plastic "water lilies" to mark spots where fish habitat was sunk. Not every bush or tree, but every group. The fake lilies look fairly natural and apparently are well designed to adjust for water levels & minimize hangups.

Ethan remarked that in ponds with deep water, Florida LMB often seem to hang deep other than when spawning. This is especially so if there's not a lot of shallow habitat, which is true on most of my place. Hopefully the habitat will draw them up where they will be more available for anglers!

So that was the picture that I saw Overtons post! The fish will love it.


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Rod, I remember seeing a very nice LMB on a shallow nest in cattails. I was flyfishing & decided to see if she would bite my bead head fly. Dragged it by her again and again and again, nearly forty times until she got annoyed enough to inhale it. Happened so fast that the first thing I noticed was that the fly was no longer visible. Great fight, and she was returned unharmed.

Must say I'm really impressed with the design of artificial lilies, how they will rise & fall with the water level. Also have tubing to protect connection from hooks. Ethan remarked that he was skeptical of them at first, but has become a fan.


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 -116




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Originally Posted by esshup
Originally Posted by anthropic
Ethan from Overton's came out, along with a couple of helpers, to deploy artificial fish habitat. Pond about 30" below full pool, lowest level I've ever experienced, but this was actually helpful in placement of structure.

Focused on dock area, fallen trees, feeders, and corners of the dam. Small "bushes" in shallows, "trees" in deeper water. Had to keep in mind that wherever would likely be 24-30" deeper in a few months.

One thing I greatly appreciated was the use of plastic "water lilies" to mark spots where fish habitat was sunk. Not every bush or tree, but every group. The fake lilies look fairly natural and apparently are well designed to adjust for water levels & minimize hangups.

Ethan remarked that in ponds with deep water, Florida LMB often seem to hang deep other than when spawning. This is especially so if there's not a lot of shallow habitat, which is true on most of my place. Hopefully the habitat will draw them up where they will be more available for anglers!

So that was the picture that I saw Overtons post! The fish will love it.

Thanks, I didn't see it. Where is their post?


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 -116




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Originally Posted by anthropic
Originally Posted by esshup
Originally Posted by anthropic
Ethan from Overton's came out, along with a couple of helpers, to deploy artificial fish habitat. Pond about 30" below full pool, lowest level I've ever experienced, but this was actually helpful in placement of structure.

Focused on dock area, fallen trees, feeders, and corners of the dam. Small "bushes" in shallows, "trees" in deeper water. Had to keep in mind that wherever would likely be 24-30" deeper in a few months.

One thing I greatly appreciated was the use of plastic "water lilies" to mark spots where fish habitat was sunk. Not every bush or tree, but every group. The fake lilies look fairly natural and apparently are well designed to adjust for water levels & minimize hangups.

Ethan remarked that in ponds with deep water, Florida LMB often seem to hang deep other than when spawning. This is especially so if there's not a lot of shallow habitat, which is true on most of my place. Hopefully the habitat will draw them up where they will be more available for anglers!

So that was the picture that I saw Overtons post! The fish will love it.

Thanks, I didn't see it. Where is their post?

It was on their FB page. Anything there look familiar?

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

Last edited by esshup; 07/19/22 11:00 PM.

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Thanks! Different pond, but similar habitat. Using the lily pads to mark sunken structures is a game changer, don't know how long they've done it.


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 -116




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Originally Posted by anthropic
...Must say I'm really impressed with the design of artificial lilies, how they will rise & fall with the water level. Also have tubing to protect connection from hooks. Ethan remarked that he was skeptical of them at first, but has become a fan.

Ethan's a very deep thinker. Be sure and ask him all the hard questions you can.


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I used those cheap Walmart boat bumpers to mark brushpiles. Something that looks like a Lilly pad would be nicer to gaze at.

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We use duck decoys to mark stuff

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Made another ford across a small stream using 240 cement block. I am getting too old for this... My 1st ford using this method was made over 30 years ago and is still good. Keeps the water clear and the stream healthy when driving across. Should thank my lucky stars that I am still able.

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Originally Posted by RAH
Made another ford across a small stream using 240 cement block. I am getting too old for this... My 1st ford using this method was made over 30 years ago and is still good. Keeps the water clear and the stream healthy when driving across. Should thank my lucky stars that I am still able.

I am glad you survived. Constructing that ford probably counts as your workout for the whole month!

Can you post a pic or diagram?

I would certainly like to copy and adapt a ford design that has lasted for 30 years!

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This is a ford from a few years ago:

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

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I envisioned the blocks the other way to let the water flow thru them.


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No strength in that orientation to vehicle traffic. The holes will fill with sediment over time. Need boards when taking metal-tracked machines across them though.

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RAH,

Thanks for the pic.

Do you put any underlayment fabric beneath the blocks?

Your soil there looks pretty clay-rich, did you just tamp clay for a relatively flat base and then lay blocks on that foundation?

I like the curvature of the top surface of your blocks that comes up and "meets" your road. Did that mitigate big channel ruts forming due to erosion of your wheel tracks?

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Now that I have a full-size backhoe, I remove the muck down to the gravel base, including an area wider than the stream where it is soft on top, and lay the block on that base and a bit up the bank. The big risk is that the block most downstream dislodge during flooding, This is why I lay the block parallel with the flow of water (to resist tumbling), but sometime I need chunks of concrete downstream to stop that anyway. I also smooth out the tops of the blocks by pressing everything down with the back of the backhoe bucket, which cuts down on hand digging before laying them. I did not have the backhoe when I built my first one, but I was 30 years younger. You still get wheel tracks when everything is real wet, especially if sand deposits on the banks, but it's not too bad. I have had poorer results using culverts before I had the backhoe because water was able to work its way through outside of the pipes due to poor compaction (by hand), or passes over during flooding. The fords hold up better for me and reduce debris getting stirred up when crossing. Our main goal is wildlife habitat restoration, and this seems most compatible with that, These are really drainage ditches, but when all you have are ditches, you call them streams:) The price of block has almost doubled, as has diesel, so they are a lot more pricey to construct now. I have put most projects on hold, but wanted to get this one done while I can still move block.

Last edited by RAH; 07/21/22 05:34 AM.
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Thanks for taking the time to type out such a detailed response!

The equivalent crossing on my property would be constructed on almost pure sand, and sometimes subject to much greater water flows.

I think I would probably have to pin my edge rows of blocks together with bent rebar and some concrete in the cinder block cells.

I agree with you that any type of culvert design I attempted, would be scoured out during the first flood.

Thanks!

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While the water flowing over my oldest ford is normally inches deep, it has flowed 7 feet deep during the worst flooding. A covered walking bridge that we built a decade before the big flood did not fare as well when a tree trunk smashed into it during one of those floods. The bridge was 5' above the normal water level. I no longer have that bridge. During the peak of the flood, water was running 2 feet over the bridge deck.

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

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Beautiful bridge!

Too bad the floodwaters rose that high.

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Moving water is a powerful force. Always better to try and work with it rather than against it. I guess that is called "going with the flow"...

Last edited by RAH; 07/22/22 05:47 AM.
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Refilled feeders today, one on the fritz so I'll have to get a replacement part. Not really a big deal, but frustrating. For some reason, this particular feeder tends to get bad corrosion where it mates up with the battery.

BG still feeding fairly well when I tested, but not with same enthusiasm they did a month or two ago. Didn't see any LMB or HSB activity whatsoever.

Pond is even lower now, down 3' from normal full pool. Wonder if this is a good thing -- prey flushed out of usual haunts -- or a bad thing -- extra stress. We'll see when it fills up again. Makes me really glad to have a relatively deep pond by Texas standards!


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 -116




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Removed 37 GSH from 9 to 11" today via a light wire #14 hook with a piece of Optimal Jr wedged between barb and shank. Surprisingly, I had 3 SMB between 11-14" take a piece of Jr too.

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Originally Posted by Snipe
Removed 37 GSH from 9 to 11" today via a light wire #14 hook with a piece of Optimal Jr wedged between barb and shank. Surprisingly, I had 3 SMB between 11-14" take a piece of Jr too.

Interesting! Floating? Weighted? Just curious.
Thanks


8 yr old pond, 1 ac, 15' deep.
RES, YP, GS, FHM (no longer), HBG (going away), SMB, and HSB (didn’t make it. 0 seen in 5 yrs) Restocked HSB (2020) I think we have survivors!
I think that's about all I should put in my little pond.
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Jr normally floats but the hook was enough to slowly sink it. They hit it about 3-6" under..

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Originally Posted by Snipe
Jr normally floats but the hook was enough to slowly sink it. They hit it about 3-6" under..
do you know if GSH school in pods on the surface like shad? Still seeing three pods in the evening hitting the surface

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GSH don't usually school in large numbers like shad. They will often be in groups of smaller #s but don't feed like shad (large schools early morning and late afternoon on the surface).
















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