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#9439 04/18/02 10:18 AM
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I just found out I can purchase 6" bluegill or 3" to 4" bluegill to stock with my fatheads...which should I choose? Will the 6-inchers eat the fatheads? Also, I have tons of frogs. Besides snakes or a gig, what will reduce thier numbers.
I suppose fish might eat the eggs etc...one of my dogs ate some frog eggs the other day...pretty gross!

Thanks

Brad

#9440 04/18/02 02:27 PM
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Brad,

I've been following your posts and I'm curious to know what prices you are paying for bluegill.

Russ

#9441 04/18/02 06:05 PM
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Too many frogs. If you are wanting to raise bass, the frogs will be a good food source for them.


Nick Smith
#9442 04/18/02 07:05 PM
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The 6-inchers will definitely eat the fatheads. If the fatheads are small, the 4 inchers will probably eat some of them also. Bass will eat the frogs and tadpoles.
Larry

#9443 04/22/02 12:00 AM
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I read where bluegill don't begin to spawn until they're 2 yrs old..? If I'm gonna stock them in hopes of having them around for bass food at some point, should'nt I purchase the 6" instead of the 2-3" ? Then...if I stock the 6" they'll eat the fatheads?? What to do?

#9444 04/22/02 05:50 AM
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I stocked Coppernose Bluegill (2 to 3 inch) and Redear sunfish on May 1 last year. About 30 or 40 of the bluegill spawned in late September and early October. The fry didn't grow very much over the winter but there were lots of them. The bluegills are starting to build nests now and will be spawning soon. So they do spawn before two years old, at least the Coppernose do.
I also stocked 5 lbs. of fatheads on April 1 and 5 more lbs. on May 1 last year. The pond was full of fatheads by the middle of the summer. There had to be thousands of them. A friend of mine had put 12 big bass (14 to 22 inches) in the pond around the middle of April. The bass didn't seem to have a lot of effect on the numbers of fatheads in the pond. The bluegills and Redears stayed hidden until they were about 4 or 5 inches long. After they started swimming around the pond the fatheads began to disappear. By fall you rarely ever saw any fatheads.
I'm not an expert by any means, but in light of my experience, I think that if you stock the 6 inch bluegill and feed them then you wouldnít have to stock fatheads at all. Then after the bluegill spawn, you can stock small Bass. The fatheads arenít going to be around for very long anyway.
The usual recommendation for stocking ponds is to stock bluegill and fatheads the first spring and then stock bass the second spring or summer.
I am surprised that someone with more experience hasnít answered your inquiry. Maybe the new format has slowed them down.

Larry

#9445 04/23/02 12:56 PM
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Brad, I don't think I would worry to much about the bluegill eating the fatheads, since, when the bass are introduced they will disappears quickly anyway. They should reproduce and flourish just fine until the introduction of bass. A healthy population of bass would surely love the frog problem you have also!!!

#9446 04/24/02 04:25 PM
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Brad,
From what I know, blue gill will not usually eat minnows. I have been told they eat insects, larva, and other small things. Adult bluegill have little mouths, they might eat minnow fry but I don't think they'll eat an adult fathead. Also, I do not believe it takes two years for them to spawn. If the conditions are right they could possibly spawn the same year you put them in the pond. If your trying for a bass pond, I have been told the key is diversity. If you don't have any bass in your pond now, stocking the smaller blue gill won't hurt you. If you do what that one guy said and wait a year before introducing your bass the bluegill will be well established. The ones you but in should be too big for the bass to eat, and there should be plenty of small ones or fry for the bass. Over time what you'll find is that the bass will have eaten all of one size bluegill. For instance, you spend a morning throwing a net or a small sein, and you'll see lots of bluegill fry, 1-2" bulegill and adult bluegill. This is because to a bass it might take two or three 1-2" bluegill to equal a 3-4 bluegill. Sorry I kind of rambled. I hope that helped a little. Good luck

#9447 04/30/02 08:07 PM
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Hello to all,
I have been reading with great interest the stocking of bluegills, and bass in ponds. We are about to stock our pond in a couple of weeks. I have a question that I hope someone can help us with. We have creek chubs in our pond, which we put in last year. Some of them seem to have grown to about 6", as I was sitting on the dock last evening and saw a fish jump to catch an insect. Perhaps, it wasn't even a creek chub, maybe someone put fish in our pond that we don't know about, but that is highly unlikely. I would like to know just what is a creek chub? Are they like overgrown minnows or flatheads? If the creek chubs live in our pond, does that mean we will have no problem with other species surviving? Are the above a good source of food for bass? Will they eat the bluegill fingerlings we plan to put in next week. Thanks to all who can help. Kay - A new pond owner - and what a joy it is! \:\) Your new message board is also great - Thanks.


Kay
#9448 05/01/02 07:46 AM
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Brad, From what I have been told by the pro's, bluegill are sexually mature at 4 inches.

#9449 05/01/02 10:25 AM
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Kay,
Creek chubs are often caught while fishing for trout and smallmouth bass. They will readily strike small lures and some of them get pretty big (8 to 10 inches). I don't know if they will eat your bluegills or not, but they surely can. I would assume that if the chubs survive in your pond that other species will as well. Judging from the ones that I have caught they are pretty delicate fish. I know that they will die if kept out of water very long while unhooking them. Check out this web site for some info on the minnow family.
www.dnr.cornell.edu/Sarep/fish/Cyprinidae/cyprinidae.html

Larry

#9450 05/01/02 11:34 AM
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I can attest to taking chub while fishing for bass. One of my favourite river areas for bass has been overrun by giant chub. Believe it or not some of these fish were over 2 pounds and a foot long. I couldn't believe it. They were striking on 3 inch+ Bass/Walleye plugs and anything else I tossed into the water. Now you rarely catch any bass at all in the area I speak of and most of these are small... seems the 'minnow' has lept its way to the top of the food chain with no larger predator fish. (Pike, Walleye) to eat them.
Kay, I have no doubt the fish you saw was likely a chub, they will eat just about anything a similar sized gamefish would.


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#9451 05/02/02 03:19 PM
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Fathead minnows are best used in a start-up pond. They're slow swimmers and prolific spawners that come off early in the spring.

Adult bluegill definitely will chow down on your fatheads, especially the juveniles.

If you have bass in your pond, don't expect your fatheads to last much past the second spawning season. Fatheads won't be able to withstand the forage pressure they're getting from the larger predators.

In an existing pond, with a standing crop of bass, rather than stocking fatheads, you'll have better luck stocking adult bluegill in the 4-6 inch range. A bluegill that size is large enough to survive most predators and mature enough to hit the spawning beds running. A high percentage of the bluegill fry and fingerlings will end up in the food chain.

Editor, Mark McDonald

#9452 05/02/02 04:02 PM
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Mark,
Finally someone who agrees with me that adult bluegill will eat fatheads. I have very limited experience with ponds but I do know that my pond was full of fatheads until the bluegill and redears reached about 4 or 5 inches long. After this the fatheads started to disappear. I haven't seen a fathead in my pond since last fall. On the other hand there are a lot of baby bluegill that hatched last fall. \:\)
Larry

#9453 05/05/02 01:16 PM
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Thanks to all that helped us out with the creek chub issue. We hope to stock the pond this week or next - so now what do we do? Should we buy the 4=6" blue gills because the creek chubs will eat the smaller ones? Should we still purchase flat heads and minnows? Perhaps, we should try our luck at fishing the larger creek chubs out? We never thought they would grown that large. I suppose they are the ones that are eating all the pollywogs ( toads ). How come we never see schools of the creek chubs swimming in the pond like we did in the creek. Do they stay in the deep part which is about 18'? Thanks again Kay


Kay
#9454 05/09/02 10:41 AM
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Kay,
I am not really qualified to answer your question, but since you have had no reply I will try to help. Here are a couple of web sites that contain fish pond management info.
http://www.bagelhole.org/article.php/Water/108/

http://www.dgif.state.va.us/fishing/Pond_Management/index.html

If it were my pond and it was overpopulated with large chubs, I would kill them with rotenone before I stocked anything else. Please note that I am not telling you to do this. It's just what I would do.

Larry


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