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I just moved into a house end of last year that has a 80 acre watershed. It's private lake thats privately owned and has so.e really big fish. Not sure of number but it Has ALOT of catfish and carp. The catfish are reproducing as I have caught fish from 3in to 15lbs so far. There is very little structure when the water is up and nearly none when it drops. I can't put trees or brush piles in it because it could clog the outlet and cause so real problems.
I sunk some honey hole bushes in there and caught a few big fish from them but nothing big. My plan is to put about 20 or so 6iin PVC pipes down to simulate a small tree. By my house the water is 1.5ft to 3 ft during spawning time and see if they hold fish. Plan is to fill them with sand so the hold heat and sound closer to a stump when a crankbait hits them. I think it will work good but wondered if anyone else has tried it before. Looking for some other ideas from anyone else as well.
There are without a doubt too many fish in the lake as there hasn't been anyone keep fish for year. There is naturally thread fin shad and tons of crayfish for food and the fish aren't suffering as far as size and thickness. The bass are BIG by private lake standards. I know there has been bass caught up to 13lbs in the last 2 yrs and it isn't hard to catch one 8lbs or bigger. I caught two 5 pounder, 2 over 7 and a 9lb 12oz just fishing from the bank in my backyard. I am just wondering if the number of big fish are dropping, staying the same or increasing. The little bass I have caught down to 6in have a big gut on them same as the longer/bigger ones. Can the people who electrocute the fish come out and see how many fish are in a given area without killing them? I want to add some rock walls out into the water 50ft or so when the water goes down but not much else. I am too afraid to upset the ecosystem before I can see how well it is really doing.
The lake is right at 80 acres. Any suggestions appreciated.

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Last edited by Lunkhead; 02/05/23 03:39 PM.
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An 80 acre private lake in your back yard with those size bass and reproducing catfish? I think you just described most of our dream properties. I’m like you, I would hate to do too much to disrupt what this lake has going naturally.


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Your pictures do not show.

Electo-fishing can be easily done without harming the fish. I doubt those are threadfin shad and they are likely gizzard shad. Threadfins will usually die during winter water temps of many lakes. While threadfin shad die at 42-degrees F., gizzards can withstand cold water, under the ice. But when their density is too dense and competition for food causes them to decline, they will die from stress in cold temperatures.

https://www.bassresource.com/fish_biology/compare-shad.html

Look through the info in this PBoss link for really good information and ideas for structure.
https://forums.pondboss.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=92463#Post92463

Start chumming the carp with sweet corn and have some fun catching them in your backyard.


Hair Rigs what they are good for


Tying hair rig & how to make a baiting needle





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I need to look at their mouth to be sure but there is a large creek that brings water in from over flow a river and a state lake. I am assuming the catfish use that creek to spawn
I have tried to chum with corn but the bottom is silt and mud. I have caught a few but not worth the trouble. I did get a 100ft sain and ran it through part of a cove. I caught 28 3ish pound carp all from the same spawn as they were all the same size. The net is made to allow a fish smaller than 3 lbs to get through. The big ones jumped the net.

You use to be able to get people to fish but it's hard now. I have been trying to get some people to come get the Crappie but they don't want to do the work and find them. There is no grass etc on the bottom just mud. The water is fairly stained but not to bad for a watershed. We had a warm spell for 3 days in December and the water came up around some bushed and the shad came in to feed. Just sat there underneath them and sucked them down. No jumping kamikaze attack. The shad acted like the weren't there and the bass just stayed calm and sucked them down one after the other.
I posted pics in the gallery no problem not sure why it isn't posting in this thread

Last edited by Lunkhead; 02/05/23 07:07 PM.
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I have been trying to get the lake for years. I had just bought a house the year before so there were no plans to move. My buddy who is a real estate agent remembered me talking about the property over the years and called me before it hit the market.

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To post pictures in the threads you have to use an on-line hosting service like Imgur.

To spawn, catfish need a cavity to spawn in. Males guard the eggs that are laid in the cavity. SO, either the catfish dig cavities out of a steep bank somewhere, there are cavities somewhere in the shallower areas of the lake (hollow trees, milk cans, barrels, etc.) or there are areas of dense Chara (I've seen catfish make a "cavity" in Chara that was a couple of feet tall). What kind of catfish are in there?


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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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All channel cat. Never seen or heard of a BH or any other type caught in it. There is a a big creek that runs into it about 20ft wide and 2-3ft deep full of brush and the banks have big holes down then for at least the 300 feet or so that I have been down it.
I am going to put some some solar powered lights by the honey hole bushes I placed last Nov. and feed the BG. I set one out about 2ft above the water and there where hundreds of bugs in the water within an hour.
I will start culling catfish and carp this year. I can catch 20-30 catfish a day fairly easy. I will look into getting pics hosted


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