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I dug myself a little mini pond of roughly a thousand gallons to try to raise some golden shiners in. Put a 5 lb box of brooders in there from Anderson minnow, gave them plenty of habitat and I'm wondering what to do once I start seeing fry. I would assume the adults will eat the young? Would it be wise to try to catch the fry and stock those directly into my main pond and hope for the best, or would you pull the brooders out and allow the fry to grow in the mini pond? Thanks for opinions in advance!

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Pull the majority of the brooders out. Feed what's left in there.


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I've never had a brood pond for any kind of fish, so take this with a grain of salt.

I've stocked 100's of lbs of adult Golden shiners in my main pond, and at other times a few hundred thousand Golden shiner frye in my main pond also (note units. lbs. vs. actual live fish) For whatever reason, I've seen the best recruitment of Golden shiners after the frye stockings.

So, to add to esshups comments, I'd say to also net out a good amount of the frye to the main pond.


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Thanks for your responses. So you would leave a handful of the brooders in there all season and just assume that they're not going to eat too much of the fry? I'm guessing it would take a while for the fry grow to reproduction size. I do have a lot of aquatic vegetation in my main pond for cover, but it's only 1/8 acre pond and I have a lot of predators. I haven't had much luck with shiners in the past so that's why I'm raising them in a brood pond

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Exactly. That's what I'd do and not worry about it.


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According to Lusk, only about 10% of the eggs laid, hatched, etc survive to get large enough to spawn. Natural mortality and predation are to blame. But, that keeps the water from polluting. Your initial stocking should be better, assuming you feed, but it’s not 100%.


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I would not have guess it was even 10%. To my knowledge I have not had any shiners successfully spawn in my main pond in the past. I'm feeding in both my brood pond and my main pond. Once they spawn in the brood pond I plan on removing all but a couple dozen and then transferring the fry as well. Hopefully that'll increase my chances of getting them somewhat established.

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Originally Posted by Freg
I would not have guess it was even 10%. To my knowledge I have not had any shiners successfully spawn in my main pond in the past. I'm feeding in both my brood pond and my main pond. Once they spawn in the brood pond I plan on removing all but a couple dozen and then transferring the fry as well. Hopefully that'll increase my chances of getting them somewhat established.

Do you have the proper spawning substrate for them in the pond?


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I have water lilies, cattails, hydrilla, couple pallets, and a couple of large brush piles. From what I've read that should give them a lot of good options.

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Originally Posted by Freg
I have water lilies, cattails, hydrilla, couple pallets, and a couple of large brush piles. From what I've read that should give them a lot of good options.

Shiners broadcast their eggs on underwater vegetation in shallow water (typically 24" or less). A customer that has a self sustaining population in his pond always has flooded grass that is about 12" underwater when the shiners start their spawn in May. The Hydrilla would work if it's in shallow water or growing up to within a foot or so of the surface and dense.


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Freg,

You mentioned only 1000 gallons for this forage pond. If it's 2 ft deep, it is only 67 sq/ft. If so, the weight of brooder stocked is very excessive and you should not expect much if any fry production you can harvest. You may have just misspoke on the water volume, it would be very good to understand the actual dimensions of your forage pond (Area and depth). Given the small size, you may be better off collecting eggs that can be transferred to the main pond or hatched and then stocked as swim ups to the main pond. There is an optimum stocking density for egg production. You may presently exceed that density.


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It is only about a thousand gallons. It's a 10 ft by 10 ft lined pond that is roughly 1.5 to 2.5 ft deep. I laid the top of a cedar tree down in there as well as some wood planks and gravel. The vegetation I was mentioning in my previous post was about the main pond (1/8th acre)

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Per the recommendations of others in this thread, I think my game plan is that once I get a hatch I will transfer at least 100 out of the 130 brooders to my main pond as well as most of the fry. If I never get shiners established in my main pond that's okay, I just wanted to have a way of breeding the shiners to at least supplementally stock into the pond as an additional food source.


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