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Taking over a family 13 Acre lake in Northeast Mississippi....pond is fertilized yearly and limed every few years when needed but not fished enough until now. Population as far as i know consists of Largemouth Bass, Crappie, Bream, Shellcracker, and Blue Cats. Recently took over trying to get the fishing under control and balanced. As far as I can tell the bass population is way overcrowded and I have started pulling out anything under 12 inches but in 40 bass have yet to catch one over 12 inches at all, they are all around 10 inches and less than a lb. I have instructed the people that do fish to keep all the crappie, bream and bass (under 12 inches) and to let me know what they catch so i can keep some records on what is coming out. I do have SE Pond management coming Thursday to do an electrofish evaluation so we will see what all they find out after that is one. My main goal is to at the very least have a balanced population where the family can go out and catch 3+lb fish. It is def fun to go out and catch 30 bass in 2-3 hours but i want more size to these fish. Cant wait to see where these new efforts take me and hopefully can grow some decent fish.

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Welcome to PB. If the lake is LMB crowded, then don't take out any BG. Post the SEP results for second and third opinions. Good luck and suggest you have SEP take out small skinny LMB during the EF survey. Big BC can eat any size LMB.
















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Dont take out any bluegill at all? I did talk to them about taking out harvesting some of the smaller LMB that we might fish up. Will def post the results as its 100% a lot of information overload when reading through forum posts

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Agree with Ewest. The bluegills are the main bass prey. Encourage them.


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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Originally Posted by MississippiBass
Dont take out any bluegill at all? I did talk to them about taking out harvesting some of the smaller LMB that we might fish up. Will def post the results as its 100% a lot of information overload when reading through forum posts


Take out 99.9% the bass that you electroshock up. You need to remove close to 400# of bass this year, and the shock survey is the best way to do it. If you see any that are over 100% Relative Weight those can go back but all the others come out. I agree about leaving all the BG in there.


www.hoosierpondpros.com


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Agree if you shock up a really plump good looking LMB or 2 (not necessarily big/long) put them back but 99% need to come out.
















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If it looks like it has shoulders, keep it.


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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Lusk sez:

It takes 10 pounds of forage for a predator(bass) to gain one pound. And, that prey needs to be 1/4 to 1/3 the size of the predator. It’s a matter of protein received vs energy expended.

A 5 pound bass will starve to death catching minnows.


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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So after the electro fish survey yesterday the initial suggestion is to stock Bluegill this winter and Threadfin Shad this coming March (i think that was correct month). We shocked up roughly 70 bass all under 11inches and 1lb and down. maybe only 25-30 Bream with the biggest relatively close to the size of your hand. According to SEP we need to continue taking out bass and stock forage fish as well as continue fertilization. Will have to wait a week or two for the full analysis but that is the initial suggestion.

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Do you know the alkalinity of the water? Another thing to look at is how much cover is in the pond for the fish to utilize?


www.hoosierpondpros.com


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Originally Posted by MississippiBass
So after the electro fish survey yesterday the initial suggestion is to stock Bluegill this winter and Threadfin Shad this coming March (i think that was correct month). We shocked up roughly 70 bass all under 11inches and 1lb and down. maybe only 25-30 Bream with the biggest relatively close to the size of your hand. According to SEP we need to continue taking out bass and stock forage fish as well as continue fertilization. Will have to wait a week or two for the full analysis but that is the initial suggestion.
That does not seem like a huge quantity of LMB for that size bow. if there are very many BC in there they should keep your LMB in check. Just thinking out loud here, you don't have otters in that pond do you? They will eliminate your biggest bass first, regardless of what Mr Van Shaik might try to tell you, I know first hand what they will do, I have an empty lake to prove it.

Last edited by gehajake; Yesterday at 04:33 PM.

All the really good ideas I've ever had came to me while I was milking a cow.
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Only small bass, large bluegill and no small ones to means LMB stunted pond. The Blues aren't picky, they will eat BG too.


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There arent any otters in the lake and I dont know the alkalinity however I can get that pretty easily as we have a test kit for our aquarium... To me it seems like dropping 7000 3-5 inch bream wont hurt anything and would boost the forage quicker but also just need to keep pulling bass out continuously and remember its not a sprint. Father-in-law doesnt think we can balance the population out and grow 3-4 lb bass consistantly so its time to prove him wrong

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Hope you make it.


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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Originally Posted by MississippiBass
There arent any otters in the lake and I dont know the alkalinity however I can get that pretty easily as we have a test kit for our aquarium... To me it seems like dropping 7000 3-5 inch bream wont hurt anything and would boost the forage quicker but also just need to keep pulling bass out continuously and remember its not a sprint. Father-in-law doesnt think we can balance the population out and grow 3-4 lb bass consistantly so its time to prove him wrong

It can be done. It will happen quicker the more LMB you can pull out.


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70 LMB shocked up over a 13 acre lake does sound low to me.


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Originally Posted by Sunil
70 LMB shocked up over a 13 acre lake does sound low to me.

I agree with Sunil that the results seem odd.

The "size" sampling of the fish suggest a lake full of stunted bass (as discussed above), yet the shock results come up sparse for bass.

Is it possible to have poor sampling during a shock survey? (For example, the LMB are suspended 12' down in open water?)

Is it possible to get a lake so out of balance that you have stunted (starving) fish, but no excess population? For example, all of the LMB are in one size class, and there is essentially no forage for that class, so those LMB show both exceedingly poor growth AND poor reproduction?

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This is the only shock survey i have been apart of and it did seem at times we were moving around pretty fast and did the entire lake in around 40 mins or so. That being said as far as sheer catching numbers go I can go out and catch 25-30 LMB in 2 hours or so, so it doesnt seem like the lake is hurting for bass from my perspective.

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Thanks MB, you CATCHING bass is also an important data point in the discussion about your lake.

Do the bass you catch match up pretty well with the bass you observed in the shock survey?

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Yeah @FishinRod everybass that was surveyed was the same size or smaller of exactly what i have been catching

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Your 13-acre lake in Mississippi should have zero problems producing 3#+ LMB for your family to catch!

I think you should even be able to produce a few bass in the 6-8# range!

If all of your LMB are essentially the same size today, you must have almost the entire productivity of the lake tied up into small, stunted bass.

Keep taking them out at every opportunity. (I am NOT an expert, but esshup runs a pond management service. His advice to remove 400# is probably a conservative starting point.)

Other things to consider:

1.) Do you have a feeder set up to provide commercial food to your BG? That is one of the best ways to help your BG population. (If you help them, they will later pay off in your production of LMB.)

2.) Your stunted LMB are going to be "old" for their size. It will be very difficult to turn them into 6#+ bass. I know it sounds odd, but at some point you are probably going to have to stock healthy, young bass into your bass over-populated lake!

Have you considered stocking some Florida bass or F1 hybrids? These are expensive fish to stock, but the advantage to stocking soon is that there are currently no large bass to eat your stockers. (Blue cats could be a problem?)

I would certainly mark your stocked bass, so that any caught can be returned to the lake while you are still actively culling your other LMB.


*** My idea 2.) is strictly amateur speculation. Hopefully, some of the Pond Boss experts will drop into this thread, or maybe you could start a new thread now that you have your survey results.

Good luck turning your lake into a premier family fishery! I think you will be able to easily achieve your goals with some good management and some time.

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Thanks for all your input guys... i plan to start a new thread with the full survey results in a week or two so I can keep a record of progress throughout this journey. It is def a lot to learn but I know its possible with a little work. I am working on getting a feeder set up but we currently feed the catfish from the same spot so in feeding the BG i am worried they may just migrate to the other feeders. I am going to start taking some out as I go but father-in-law wants to keep them if at all possible. I know they compete with the bass for forage but at the moment is just something i am gonna have to deal with


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