Another question???

Discussion in 'LOCAL MISSOURI TALK' started by wally_1951, Oct 21, 2006.

  1. wally_1951

    wally_1951 New Member

    Messages:
    24
    State:
    mo
    dad has a small pond...has bout 2-3 hundred channel cats in there...small....lots of blue gill....have fished to try and get blue gill out....spent 2 days and caught over 200 gill out of there...trying to thin them out to see if the cats will get bigger....i know that its been said b4 not to put flathead in ponds....but will putting them i get rid of the gills or the channels....
     
  2. bigtimeblues

    bigtimeblues New Member

    Messages:
    143
    State:
    missouri, macon
    Howard putting flatheads in there would thin out all species, they really don't care wether it's a channel cat or a bluegill they eat.
    It sounds to me like your on the right track. Thin out the bluegills, but you have to leave enough to be a food source for the cats. But you also need to thin out the cats if there's not enough food to go around for them.
    If it was me, I would also go fishing and bring home some bigger channels that are big enough to eat the little gills already. They'll thin them out 24 hours a day every day of the week. Plus all that good food will help them pack on pounds. Then you'll have some dandies in your pond to catch while you wait for the others to grow up. ​
     

  3. BKS72

    BKS72 New Member

    Messages:
    3,361
    State:
    East of KC
    Use your castnet to get the gills (faster than r and r) and then use them for flahead bait at another fishing spot while your waiting on the channels in the pond to get bigger......
     
  4. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Messages:
    2,554
    State:
    MO
    How big is the pond?

    The MDC pond management document warns against stocking more than 20 8" channel cat per acre per year and to avoid building populations above 60 to70 per acre. It also says that channel cats are rarely predators in ponds, so they're not going to thin out your bluegill population much.

    Lots of good information here:

    http://www.mdc.mo.gov/documents/fish/pondhb.pdf
     
  5. wally_1951

    wally_1951 New Member

    Messages:
    24
    State:
    mo
    thanks for the replies...ive heard different responses in previous posts...just tired of all those little gills really messing up the cat fishing...will probably just continue to try and catch them...
     
  6. bigtimeblues

    bigtimeblues New Member

    Messages:
    143
    State:
    missouri, macon

    I must catch a lot of these "rare" predatory catfish when I jug fish. I'm curious as to what they think they do eat in that pond. One night this summer I caught three channels over two foot while trolling for walleye. But hey, I don't have a biology degree. Just observations from years of fishing.
     
  7. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Messages:
    2,554
    State:
    MO
    If you'd *read* my post and *read* the document I referenced rather than just poo-poo it based on your own vast experience, you might understand.

    A small farm pond isn't a lake, it isn't a large reservoir and it's not a river. The food sources aren't the same, the fish don't grow at the same rates and the prey vs predator roles you've observed in other bodies of water aren't necessarily the same.
     
  8. bigtimeblues

    bigtimeblues New Member

    Messages:
    143
    State:
    missouri, macon

    Marty I did read your post and the document you referenced. I've read that one before then too. It's primarily an article on stocking a new pond. And your right on several things about what it says. It also says a mature catfish diet consists of mainly fish. It seems to me that the problem he has isn't how to stock but how to balance his pond. That article does have a blurb about balancing bass to bluegill ratios. Howard never mentioned bass in the pond or wanting them either. He was wanting larger catfish. When the fish are stunted and all in the same size range it's from the lack of proper forage. There's no smaller fish because there all eaten before they reach maturity. If there's limited forage, big cats are going to eat smaller fish rather than starve. True channels are very opportunistic and will eat the easiest meal to catch first. But because of the lack of other forage in this case their main stay would be smaller fish. Your quote on the stocking rate I agree with, but it's says 10 fish per acre per year 8" or larger. All I'm saying is make them 5 to 10 pounds so they can eat the smalller gills. If you stocked 10 larger cats and they averaged one gill per day in their diet that would remove over 3600 per year. Once the balance comes down and other forage is available they will use it obviously, so it won't actually be this many.
    Marty my primary fishing is actually farm ponds and strip pits. I have access to over 20,000 acres of old mining ground with probably over 200 pits and ponds. The fishing is so good there I have a hard time going elsewhere. The bass in my avatar came from one of them and she now swims in my pond on the back 40. I live less than 2 miles from Thomas Hill Res but I still rarely fish it other than for hybrid stripers because I have such great fishing elsewhere.
    I tell you what Marty I work 12 hour shifts which gives seven days of every two weeks off. If your ever going to be over this way drop me a message and we'll get together and debate fishing and my experience over a couple of fishing poles and a good cigar.
     
  9. crazy

    crazy New Member

    Messages:
    2,090
    State:
    Kansas CIty, MO
    I say you have to many channel cats maybe you should try and thin them out as well. Just how big is this small pond? If you have fish all going for the same food sourse you are going to have small fish all the way around.
     
  10. wally_1951

    wally_1951 New Member

    Messages:
    24
    State:
    mo
    i agree with you all....it is a pond not a lake...too many fish in it i agree...does have bass in it...but not as many as b4....it try to get rid of as many bass and gill that i can hoping the cats will grow...also feed the cats...dont know how long the pond has been there...it used to produce some good size cat for a pond (3-10lb range) but it seems like this last batch we put in a few years back is having a hard time growning...also have been having problems with turtles the last couple of years...was wondering if maybe they were eating the bigger slower cats....although i have not seen any floating...dont know....any how...tks for your inputs...will keep trying to thin out the gills...
     
  11. bigtimeblues

    bigtimeblues New Member

    Messages:
    143
    State:
    missouri, macon
    One other thing I would do is put in about 10 pounds of fathead minnows per acre. Maybe higher with your over population problem.
    I do that every spring here. But with your problem it might help to up that number. There's also a great article in the library on making a small fish trap. You could use it to help as well. I built one for catching flathead bait. It works well. Best of luck.
     
  12. wally_1951

    wally_1951 New Member

    Messages:
    24
    State:
    mo
    you know i thought bout that also...would like to get it back to where it used to be...i know that there is too many fish in there....but when u say 8 -10 channels per acre...thats like putting a minnow in 50 gallons of water....i believe that if i try and thin out the gills and bass and continue feeding the cats that they will grow....i know that when we put the last ones in and continued to feed them that i had one that i called football head continued to grow....i caught him this year...even though i didnt have a scale i know he went 15 lbs plus...i watched him for 2 years....he would feed like there was no tomarrow...caught him by suprise...also another question....i was told at one time on pond caught catfish...if you want to release them done touch them....bcause if you do and let them go whereever you touch them it causes a fungus to grow on them and they will die from it...i have a feeling that is true.....about 5 years ago i cause a 12 lb cat out of there...all i did was lip it with two fingers..weighed it and let it go and it was floating 3 days later...i wanted a child to catch it..thats why i let it go....now i practice not touching fish with my hands unless i want to keep them...what do you think????
     
  13. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Messages:
    2,554
    State:
    MO
    Any time you touch a fish, you disturb the slime coat, which is the fishes defense against bacteria and fungus. Disturb the slime and you make it easier for fungus to take hold, which can eventually kill a fish.

    You can minimize the impact by wetting your hands prior to handling fish, using rubber nets instead of nylon and keeping them in the water as much as possible. Keep the fight as short as possible and make sure the fish is well resuscitated before you let him go -- all of these are the "standard" way to handle catch & release fish.

    I doubt there's much difference in handling a pond fish than handling one in a lake or river. Some are going to die after you catch them and there's nothing you can do about it short of staying home.
     
  14. wally_1951

    wally_1951 New Member

    Messages:
    24
    State:
    mo
    i agree with you on that...i have learned that if i am going to keep then i will touch them...if i want to release....i normally leave them in the water and just touch the hook and let them go....if i have trouble gettin the hook out when they are in the water and have to handle them, i normally use a wet rag to hold them carefully trying not to harm them, then release
     
  15. safetybass

    safetybass New Member

    Messages:
    299
    State:
    Missouri
    Wally, that rag will remove slime even when the rag is really wet. You help that fish more by keeping your hands wet.