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bob_esper12 #560157 08/02/23 07:53 AM
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Bob, just noticed your decision to use oak stumps. I wouldn’t.

My experience. When my pond was dug(long time ago), some big oak trees were taken down. I had them piled up for fish structure. We got some good rains so I stocked. Within a couple of weeks the water blackened, all fish died and the crawdads I stocked were crawling out of the water. They also died.

I did some research and found that oaks contain tanins which are lethal to fish. I tested with a bucket of the water and some minnows. The minnows died within hours.

I pumped the whole thing out and let Texas summer dry everything out. Then burnt the whole works.

I doubt that a small amount would be a big deal but, I doubt that fish will orient on them. And, I don’t want anything that affects water quality. I now use cedars.


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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My stumps are now under water. So short of paying someone to bring an excavator and tear up all my lawn there is not much i can do. I will avoid adding any more oaks though. Would pines be safer? i have a ton of pine trees at my disposal. I was planning on dropping a few small oaks in a corner of the pond to create structure from the very bottom all the way up the water column. But now hearing this I won't risk the additional oaks.

bob_esper12 #560159 08/02/23 09:31 AM
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bob,

There have been multiple threads on the forum where people killed fish or had a failure to thrive after the initial pond fill-up with numerous oak trees in the pond.

There have also been people replying in those threads, that they had oaks in their ponds, but did not observe any problems.

Therefore, I would speculate that oaks MIGHT be a problem! But since we know oaks CAN be a problem, I would definitely err on the side of caution.

In addition to the absolute concentrations of tannins in the pond water, the local chemistry of your water and pond soil probably also makes a difference?

Perhaps get your FHMs in the pond now that the oaks are covered and observe their ongoing survival.

In my experience with oak forest ponds, tannin-rich pond water has a characteristic look. The waters that I have seen, are quite clear, but stained various shades of brown. Like weak tea to very strong tea.

If you are worried, you might be able to flush some tannins now that your stumps are submerged. If you are experiencing sufficient rainfall to fill your pond in the desired time frame, you could let out some water now. Maybe drain so the top of the stumps are exposed, and then let the rain submerge them again.

P.S. In the tannins/fish kill threads, I do not recall anyone mentioning any problems with any tree types other than oaks.

Last edited by FishinRod; 08/03/23 11:01 PM. Reason: Forgot some detail.
bob_esper12 #560160 08/02/23 09:40 AM
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I've had some FHM and RES in the pond for right at a month. I lost some immediately due to stresses from the transfer in ungodly hot weather. But since that first day I've only seen one dead FHM and I've seen none of the 90 or so crawfish I've stocked.

bob_esper12 #560182 08/02/23 09:12 PM
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Rod, test it with some fish in a tub, bucket or… I won’t try it again.


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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bob_esper12 #560204 08/03/23 02:21 PM
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I got ahold of the company who dug my well. He pulled up the data off my well and said it was tested to refill at a rate of at least 50 gpm and he'd have no concern leaving a hose going 24/7 for a while. So I think i'll run it a few nights after this current rain storm moves through to hopefully hold off some evaporation before the next stretch of rain comes through. I'll just be glad if i can get some grass growing from the 1/2 of the pond bank I can reach haha. I really want to put some more fish in this fall, but I want the water to be a bit higher before I do any more stocking.

bob_esper12 #560369 08/09/23 08:20 AM
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I'm finally getting some good grass sprouting on 3/4 of the banks. Assuming i can keep it alive through the rest of this summer and stop the mass inflow of mud into the pond i would like to try and clear it up some more before putting in any more fish this fall. Where can I buy large amounts of gypsum? I can buy 40# bags at lowes, but if i remember correctly i'll never several hundred pounds for my .4 acre pond.

bob_esper12 #560390 08/09/23 07:26 PM
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I would use alum if it's turbidity, but that's just me.


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).
bob_esper12 #560397 08/10/23 07:50 AM
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Isn't that liable to mess up PH though? Gypsum seemed like the safer option for someone who doesn't know what they're really doing haha.

bob_esper12 #560414 08/10/23 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by bob_esper12
Isn't that liable to mess up PH though? Gypsum seemed like the safer option for someone who doesn't know what they're really doing haha.

True if you don't use hydrated lime to buffer it, but sometimes Gypsum doesn't work as well as alum. Time will tell though!


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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).
bob_esper12 #560416 08/10/23 06:03 PM
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Bob , just a though from an amateur. Others may correct me . My first fish, was told to put bag in pond to equalize temperatures , then add fish . Near Disaster. Lost several fish, both BCP &CC . mmm FHM also . The clear bag heated up the water fast , like leaving a puppy in a car with windows up ( mid September in Western Oklahoma ) . I've since added thousands of fish, I always use an thermometer , check pond water , check bag water temperature ,shooting for a 5F or less difference. If bag water is warm, very gently add cooler pond water , until bag water cools to match pond . Once again , my experience , FWI EMCM , Temperature is #1 5F maximum difference . PH is somewhere down the list, I've moved fish from North Central Missouri , From 3 different locations in Eastern Oklahoma , and bought off a truck from Arkansas, got water temperature correct , zero mortality . So far, from 5 different locations, , zero loss at installation . Experts , please add to or delete , I don't wish to mislead. So far, I just haven't seen a big difference in PH, I may be fortunate to have middle of road PH pond water . Bob may have extreme PH water in Tn and I suppose it could be an issue. Just my opinions , FWIW , proverbial 2 cents .


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bob_esper12 #560418 08/10/23 08:57 PM
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I agree with Fishingadventure for release of fish that have been bagged for delivery. I try to haul bagged fish out of the sunshine. Gradually adding pond water to the bag of fish is a good reliable method. Also important is telling the fish seller how far you need to drive to get home. If it is a longer distance the fish seller could add fewer fish to each bag.


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bob_esper12 #560427 08/11/23 09:33 AM
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I think you're absolutely right on the the bag causing them to heat up to fast. When I dump more fish in this fall I will use a different method for sure. We've been blessed with some good rains this week. I'm probably 5-6' from full pool so I should have at least 8' of water in it. The water level is finally up to most of the structure i've put in. So hopefully i will be getting some good FHM spawns going. I've stuck a fish trap in it and caught several FHM, a couple crayfish, and a ton of tadpoles.

bob_esper12 #560428 08/11/23 09:44 AM
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I believe I've gotten my stocking plan for the pond moderately figured out.

I've got FHM, crayfish, and RES as of now. This fall I will buy some Speckle belly and hopefully transfer some wild YP to the pond. Then next spring I will put in some SMB. My thinking is the RES and Speckle won't reproduce a ton so they will be easily controlled and I can just stock some every spring to counter what we harvest and what's eaten before it can get too large. The YP will eat the small YP, along with some crayfish and any remaining FHM. The SMB will help control the remaining young YP and crayfish. If the YP needs more controlling I can drop in a few HSB as well. I'm hoping this arrangement along with some pellet feeding will be moderately balanced. If it falls apart in a year or two it should be easy enough to drop in some CNB and LMB. If I ever get enough vegetation i will try some grass shrimp, but does anyone have any other recommendations for forage? Shiners?

bob_esper12 #560449 08/11/23 04:24 PM
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If there isn't enough habitat for the panfish to hide from the SMB, then the SMB will also control some of them. I have a customer that has YP, RES, SMB in a pond along with some HSB that someone bucket stocked. VERY little cover in the pond for the fish to hide in. The SMB are stunted and there are very little other species that grow to adulthood. The SMB control all the other species, and actually they do too good of a job. More SMB need to be harvested, and if I can convince the owner to put the correct amount of cover in the pond it would be a good fishery in a few years. Right now not enough SMB harvest is going on.

Remember you need roughly 20%-25% of the surface area of the pond in cover for the fish, from shallow water to deep water. Small openings in the cover for small fish, larger openings for larger fish and predators.


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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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bob_esper12 #560711 08/21/23 08:03 AM
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I did an alum treatment Friday evening. Went from maybe 6" visibility at best to now a good 24". I've been occasionally feeding the pond since stocked with zero action that i could notice. However, this morning I threw some feed out and it started getting hammered by FHM and I'm 95% sure I had some RES feeding. I only have FHM and RES and some of the fish coming to the feed looked at least 3" long and pan fish shaped. . Definitely going to be feeding morning and evening now. How late into the year will FHM spawn? I wanna make sure they have a bunch of spawns before dumping in YP this fall.

bob_esper12 #560817 08/23/23 07:55 AM
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Lots of RES eating feed every morning now. They're taking to it at least as good as the FHM are. Am I just lucky? Or maybe they were just malnourished from the new pond not having enough forage for them so they readily took to pellets once the water cleared? Either way, I'm glad their eating so well. Would be nice to put some weight/size on them before it gets cold.

bob_esper12 #560822 08/23/23 10:24 AM
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Bob, what brand of fish food are you using? When I bought my RES last year I was told they wouldn't come to my feeder, but I hear some members are having luck with it. My sunfish hit the pellets so fast I can't tell if RES are mixed in with the CNBG.

bob_esper12 #560823 08/23/23 10:34 AM
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Purina Grower 400. I'm throwing out a few small handfulls every morning and evening. I stocked 150 of them, 25 or so died due to stress of being stocked in July. Hopefully they will put on some size in a hurry now.

bob_esper12 #560979 08/30/23 08:17 AM
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Saw my first baby FHM this morning. How late in the year can I expect to see them spawn? End of September or longer?

bob_esper12 #560981 08/30/23 08:23 AM
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IIRC, adult fatheads spawn about every (2) weeks when the water temps are 70 degrees or higher.


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."

Sunil #560984 08/30/23 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Sunil
IIRC, adult fatheads spawn about every (2) weeks when the water temps are 70 degrees or higher.

With this being said, I have heard different stories or theories on this.
I stocked FHM in a fresh pond back in early May, I'm sure they have been spawning repeatedly since day one, but have been told that they stop in Late July or early August.
either way I have millions of them, as of yesterday, some look like baby hatchlings meaning they have never stopped reproducing

Jason D #560989 08/30/23 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Jason D
Originally Posted by Sunil
IIRC, adult fatheads spawn about every (2) weeks when the water temps are 70 degrees or higher.

With this being said, I have heard different stories or theories on this.
I stocked FHM in a fresh pond back in early May, I'm sure they have been spawning repeatedly since day one, but have been told that they stop in Late July or early August.
either way I have millions of them, as of yesterday, some look like baby hatchlings meaning they have never stopped reproducing


In neighbor's, Lee, pond, I've seen fathead fry in January with water temps in the 40's. These were so small, I can't believe they would be from a late summer/early fall spawn.


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."

bob_esper12 #560990 08/30/23 10:25 AM
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Good deal, so maybe not impossible to expect another 1-2 spawns this year then. Water is still plenty warm.

bob_esper12 #560991 08/30/23 10:35 AM
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They do sometimes back way off in the heat. But they tend to start again as temps drop slightly and day length begins to shorten.
Keep in mind when talking of the spawn of FHM, females are laying eggs throughout the day, every day so you have fry hatching non-stop 24-7. Each individual female may lay again in 11-20 days but there are always active, egg-laying females at all hours, doing their thing.

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