Bluegill are dying in my live box

Discussion in 'Catfishing Baits' started by whiteriver, Aug 27, 2009.

  1. whiteriver

    whiteriver New Member

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    617
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    in
    I caught some bluegill Monday for flathead bait. I got a call from a friend and he had hay in the field that needed to be put up so plans were quickly changed. I was not able to get back to the pond until Wednesday afternoon and about 1/2 of my 'gills were dead, 12 to 14. I had checked them Tuesday evening and they were doing fine. Any ideas what may have happened? They were in the shade of my dock.
     
  2. fishnvince

    fishnvince New Member

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    414
    State:
    na
    With out knowing how they were being kept, I'd be guessing at an answer for you. They may of ran out of oxygen, or the water they were in may have got to hot. (if they were in a bucket or cooler) sometimes they get really stressed and die. Wish I could give you more of a definite answer
     

  3. Swampfox.

    Swampfox. New Member

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    1,182
    State:
    Louisiana
    could be any number of things. how dense did you stock. to many? enuff o2? stress? to hot? more details to give diagnosis.
     
  4. bw69r

    bw69r Well-Known Member

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    7,816
    State:
    West Newton, PA
    when there are that many that close together when they start going to the bathroom they are breathing all that stuff in and it kills them. especially if there is little or no current to help move that stuff away from them.
     
  5. gofish98

    gofish98 New Member

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    State:
    Lafayette Indiana
    YELP thats what happens ,
     
  6. whiteriver

    whiteriver New Member

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    617
    State:
    in
    They were in a 1/2 X 1" weld wire live box that is about 12" square and 24" long that was vertical and tied to the shade side of my dock in my pond. I checked them briefly Tuesday evening and they were in great condition. When I went back Wednesday to take them to the river about 12 to 14 out of 24 were dead or dying.
     
  7. whiteriver

    whiteriver New Member

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    617
    State:
    in
    Thanks guys, how many could you keep in a situation like that? Would they do better if I took the live box to the river to keep fresh water running over them?
     
  8. tackleholic

    tackleholic New Member

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    1,000
    State:
    New Albany

    I agree! Someone else told me the same thing.
     
  9. etexun

    etexun New Member

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    State:
    Texas (Nea
    Your question about bait dying is something everyone faces. I have several traps I use to catch slick gems for my bait. I try to leave them either in those traps or move them to a larger holding trap I made just for that purpose. I only put them in my transport tank right before heading out to fish. Once they are in that big box I have to change the water out and treat it twice a day. If I don't you can really smell the ammonia in the water. When you lift that lid and you haven't changed the water out like you should that smell will tell you quick you had better change the water.
     
  10. JimmyJonny

    JimmyJonny Well-Known Member

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    4,059
    State:
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    Were they tied up off the dock in shallow water ?
     
  11. whiteriver

    whiteriver New Member

    Messages:
    617
    State:
    in
    the live box was tied to the dock in about 4 ft of water and went down about 2 ft. but was only about 12" square.
     
  12. JimmyJonny

    JimmyJonny Well-Known Member

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    The only thing I can come up with is that it is to close to the top of the water column and they cant get enough oxygen.

    With it laying in the water vented like that it cant be a ammonia or anything else chemical. I would check the surface temp and see what it says. Keeping gills/bream at even 80F can get tricky, our lake is around 87F,,,hot enough to kill them in a holding area. Also look for any gas/oil film on the water surface.

    That's all I can think of off the top of my head.
     
  13. whiteriver

    whiteriver New Member

    Messages:
    617
    State:
    in
    You know, with them being in a wire cage and open water, you must have a good point. I believe I will keep them in the river until I need them from now on.
     
  14. Catfish_Scooter

    Catfish_Scooter New Member

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    2,055
    State:
    Tennessee
    Stress, Overcrowded, Lack of Oxygen.
     
  15. liplifter

    liplifter New Member

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    131
    State:
    indiana
    You may have had something on your hands that was toxic or in your bucket,if you keep them in the water you'll risk a turtle shredding your basket.
     
  16. JimmyJonny

    JimmyJonny Well-Known Member

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    4,059
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    Ammonia poisoning and heat stroke, LOL. This time of year your lucky to keep one alive for every gallon of water. Between the overcrowding ( ammonia releasing ) and the heat ( low oxygen situation ) bait wont have a chance unless kept after.

    During the first 24 hours of catching bait they will purge themselves ( poop and or throw up ). Its most important to change the water more often at this point.
     
  17. whiteriver

    whiteriver New Member

    Messages:
    617
    State:
    in
    I guess I didn't explain it too well, they were in a Wire live box made of 1/2" X 1" weld wire and suspended in my small lake on the shady side of my dock and were able to go at least 2 ft deep. I have decided that I will take them to the river and make a larger bait box until I can outfit a large tank to keep them in.
     
  18. JimmyJonny

    JimmyJonny Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,059
    State:
    sc
    Thats ok Earl....... I think I answer this in another thread already but they need to be dropped deeper. If ya put them in a river find a slow current area.
     
  19. catfishcatcher

    catfishcatcher New Member

    Messages:
    493
    State:
    indiana
    Sounds like the shallow water which would have been pretty warm and little to no flow could have reduced levels of oxygen. We have portable baitwell box that we use for bluegills and creek chubs. It is set up with a pump hooked up to a 12vlt battery for good water flow. We have found that over time the pump heats the water up and will slowly kill off the bait. We usually put ice in the water several times to keep the temp down. Keep the water cool, get good flow and your bait should last a long time. I almost forgot that we also put water conditioner in thr water. We pick this up at the local bait shop.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2009
  20. whiteriver

    whiteriver New Member

    Messages:
    617
    State:
    in
    It would take a lot of conditioner,the pond is between 2 and 4 acres.(( :crazy:))