i have a hard time keeping the shad alive for any particular amount of time . i have a boat with two livewells. i put my live shad in the smaller of the two but they dont seem to last long , usually a couple of hours. is there anything i can add to make them stay alive longer?
You can keep shad alive in a livewell but usually not for very long. Try this, put them in the larger tank and run the Aerator continuosly to keep fresh water over them all the time. If you had a bait tank that did not get fresh water on a continous basis you can add a cup of rock salt for every 30 gal. This increases their slim coat and keeps stress down some. This is a subject that takes time and skill to master, You will kill lots of shad until you get it right. I have a 30 gallon bait tank in my boat and have spent a long time to master this stuff. Go to Keep-alive.net to learn this stuff. I got one of their tanks 4 months ago And next to my depth finder its the best investment for my boat. Good luck be patient and remember you can always use fresh dead bait as cut bait.
Good advice there. One thing to consider is that it's dang near impossible to keep shad alive for any length of time during the hot summer. In the fall I can keep them alive for 8 hours using an aerator in a 10 gallon wal-mart tub. In the summer, they seem to die before I get to my fishing hole.
In the summertime you need to put a small block of ice in the baitbox to keep the water temp down. You also have to make sure you get fresh water in there. The more shad you have the more you need to make sure you change some of the water out if your system isn't automatically doing that. I fill a 20oz coke bottle and freeze it and put in in a 30 gallon drum (my bait tank) with a extra aerator that I put in the boat when i'm using live bait. I haven't tried the salt but i've seen several post on here so it must work. I'm going to give it a shot next time I go....
One thing to consider is that it's dang near impossible to keep shad alive for any length of time during the hot summer.
A good quality, insulated, filtered bait tank and attention to water condition and temperature make it pretty easy to keep shad alive whether it's summer or winter.
My 30-gallon Grayline bait tank has just impressed the socks off of me so far - I can routinely keep about 30 shad in it for at least 24 hours, longer if necessary. Typically, I'll go catch shad the day before I'm ready to fish keep them alive overnight and they stay alive all the next day without any problems.
But it requires attention - keep the water temperature cool, change the water regularly, keep the filter cleaned out and don't over-crowd.
If you use lake-temperature water in a livewell, they might last a couple of hours if you're lucky, even if you run the livewell pump continuously. Put the shad in a bucket with a bubbler and you might get an hour. Cooling the water may prolong things, but not by much.
Personally, if a livewell or a bucket were the only options I had, I'd sooner put the shad in a plastic bag and get them on ice as soon as they're caught - if you're going to fish right away, they'll work just about as good as a live shad. Except for the swimming around part...
I have been keeping bait alive and frisky for over 3 days in my tank, you always want to keep the temp 8 degrees below the lake temp. My tank injects oxygen into the water and I can increase or decrease the current and oxygen amount in the tank. Best bet is to use frozen 2 liters to cool. NEVER put city water into a tank with shad only well water. City water has too much chlorine in it and will kill them quick. If you have a good tank you can keep about 1-2 dozen per 10 gallons of fresh water. A little trick is when you catch shad let them go into your livewell for about 5-10 minutes before putting them into a tank. They will poop and shed scales first into the livewell more than letting them into the bait tank first.