Problem keeping bait alive

Discussion in 'Catfishing Baits' started by slikk03, Oct 14, 2008.

  1. slikk03

    slikk03 New Member

    we get twev bluegill put them in a bucket then it gets dark they die we cant get bait night over, tried a wire basket with 7 shinners they died. bullheads never die but been having bluegill die , the waters hot the airs cold think its shocking them
  2. AwShucks

    AwShucks New Member

    Guthrie, Oklaho
    You may want to insure the bucket your putting them in has not had some type of chemical in it that would effect the water, killing the fish. Also, if your using house/city water, you have to remove the chlorine or it will kill the fish pretty darn quick. Another thing to look at is your water quality. I have a very high level of nitrates in my water and can't keep bait fish. I'm wanting to devise a trap for rain water to see if it would be beneficial to fish. But, there is more than temperature, especially this time of the year, which effect fish. If you have a Pets Mart or an aquarium store near you, put a sample of water in a baggie and take to them. They usually test a water sample for free.

  3. HRCats

    HRCats New Member

    I usually Get my water from where i'm catching the bait, then add an aerator to it. I don't have much of problem with them dying this way. Also after getting to where you're fishing at maybe change the water.
  4. Flamekeeper

    Flamekeeper New Member

    Louisville, Ken
    Go to Dicks sporting goods and get yourself one of them Insulated Mr Bubbles Bait Bucket complete with areator.around 30.00bucks.2d batteries and you will have live bluegills for 2-3 days,I've been useing them for the last 3-4yrs. they keep bait alive:wink:
  5. Flamekeeper

    Flamekeeper New Member

    Louisville, Ken
    You might have to scoop up a fresh cup of water once or twice a day if its hot,But it will serve you good:big_smile:

    Attached Files:

  6. brother hilljack

    brother hilljack New Member

    Shelbyville, TN
    Yep, you are going to need some type of aireator even if you don't plan on keeping them long. I would suggest the bucket mentioned above and ONLY use it for bait. As far as temp, as long as you get your water from your fishing hole, then they should adjust well.
  7. mankind

    mankind New Member

    ashland ky
    also freeze a couple bottles water and take it with you. keep the lids on them and put them in your bucket that will keep your water cool:tounge_out:
  8. whiteriverbigcats

    whiteriverbigcats New Member

    I use a pull apart bait bucket.. the inside bucket i can toss in the water and it will let water flow thru or I can just fill up the outer bucket and set the inner bucket in that and run an airator and I have no problems....
  9. bigmaac73

    bigmaac73 Member

    Lenoir City, TN
    I use a two buckey system. I have two buckets and two aerators. I also have a basket that makes it easier to get the bait out. It goes inside the bucket full of water and you just lift it out and all of the bait in the bucket are in the basket and you just choose the one you want. A few times a night I just fill up the second bucket with some fresh water and then transfer the aerators and the basket of bait to the new bucket. I have kept over 40 bluegill alive in one 5 gallon bucket for a day and a half before using them like this and only lost a few that had been gut hooked. They not only stay alive but they are still very very lively when I take it out of the bucket which is very important. I like the basket becuase that means I only touch the fish that I want to use and that seems to help them. Also they are out of the water less and they are not getting wacked by the net all the time. For the basket you could just use another bucket witha bunch of holes drilled in it. I just use a wire basket.
  10. CatfishAngler25

    CatfishAngler25 New Member

    They make bait keeping tablets i think they sponsor this on the side scrolling on this site this usually helps alot in the baitkeeping. new aereated buckets work well to i have caught 30 -40 gills and they stayed alive all night and most of the next day.
  11. Boomer

    Boomer New Member

    I use one of those fish baskets for my blue gills, the mesh will keep a 2 inch one in. The only problem there is it seems like if you put a lot of small fish in the basket, it attracts snakes, if you are fishing at night you definately want to check and make sure there is no snake coiled up on the lid before you stick your hand down there. The last time I fished at night, there was a copperhead coiled up on top of mine.

    If you dont use an air device, make sure you have something large, that holds plenty of water, and ice them down. But dont dump a lot of ice in at once, gradually add ice. If you have far to transport them this way, pull over about every 20 minutes and agitate the water, get some oxygen back into the water, and as soon as you get to the water add fresh water.
  12. Carolina Cat Crew

    Carolina Cat Crew New Member

    South Carolina
    You want to make sure your container your keeping them in is big enough first then get yourself a aerator suitable for the amount of water your keeping them in and last but not least go to a pet store and get chlorinate and add one or two teaspoons to however much tapwater your using (it will have the ratio on the bottle) that will take the chlorine out of the water. Let it stabilize for 2 or 3 hours and then add your bait fish. changing only half the water once a week so they don't go into shock.When your ready to go fishing use some of the same water thats in your bait tank along with a bubble box from like walmart and you'll be good to go. I have kept my bait alive for weeks at a time by doing this. Good luck. Hope this helps you out.:wink:
  13. upncomincatfishking

    upncomincatfishking New Member

    Cheviot Ohio
    this is wat I do get you a 5 gallon bucket with a lid. take 1/2 inch drill bit and drill holes in the sides and bottom. a lot of holes and it'll keep em alive. you might have to many fish in and not enough water. i'm not sure about the shinets unless wgere ever your gettin em water is warm or colder than the water your puttin them in and sendin them into shock. but try the bucket. I've even been able to keep shad alive in it for a while it works great. just get a long rope so you can throw it out a lil ways 5-10 ft.
  14. littlebigman

    littlebigman New Member

    i have herd that if you have to many fish in one spot like a bucket they will die because there are to many fish and not enough space.
  15. catmancarr

    catmancarr New Member

    u can add ice 2 it this helps alot
  16. JimmyJonny

    JimmyJonny Well-Known Member

    Very good advice given here. I keep my bait in bait in 55gal drums here at the house ,gills, herring, gizzards and trout. Here is a few things I do.

    I use a 6 or 7 gal bucket instead of a 5gal

    I never use a bucket that goes in the water...I bank fish and I feel I will spook a few bigger fish splashing the shore.

    I use all city tap water. I fill 55 gallons in one tank and let it sit UNCOVERED for 5 days before using in the main tank. Chlorine does dissipate on its own with no problem , but the gas has to be able to escape.

    I use a cheap Mr. bubbles bubbler

    I use frozen small bottles of water to cool them off if needed. But...I use my treated water in the bottles because I empty them into the bucket for fresh water instead of drawing water from the shore.

    If a gill starts to go sideways he either goes on a hook right away or on ice, I never leave dieing bait in any type of tank.

    I never EVER clean ANY of my buckets, nets , etc in anything but plain water. Use soap or bleach one time and your bait is as good as dead.

    And obviously you have to limit the number of bait within a given space.

    That's all I can think of off the top of my head . IMO don't buy pills, additives , etc unless your getting into herring types of baits , which does involve cycling, salting , filtration, aeration...etc. I hope this answers a few things for ya.

    No matter what...first thing I would do is toss that bucket for another, eliminate the contamination factor first ; )

  17. RebelMan

    RebelMan Guest

    if you buy the ice at a gas station make sure theres no chlorine it in! or they will all die :crazy:
  18. Dirtdobber

    Dirtdobber Guest Staff Member

    Vian Okla
    I went to the feed store here and got some of the plastic tubs that had been used for a cattle feed. They hold about 20 gal. I rigged up a small bait pump and they work good for perch and chubs. Shad will stay alive in cool or cold weather pretty good as long as you don't put to many in it. In the hot summer time I take 2 or 3 tubsand spread the bait out and add ice every once in awhile
  19. msucatfish

    msucatfish New Member

    minnows or shiners die easily, especially if theres alot of them in one bucket, i caught some yesterday and had 25-30 in a cooler, after 30 minutes i checked them and everyone was at the top breathing in air, i took all but 12 out and they made it through the night and are still alive now been in the same cooler over 24 hours, the others i put back in trap and put in the pond for later use, i think though that bream are pretty hardy fish, just dont overcrowd them and keep them in the water you caught them from, and keep the water cool should be ok
  20. centexcop

    centexcop Well-Known Member

    An mentioned in previous posts, an insulated bucket with an aerator does work very well. Add a little salt to it and it will help reduce some of the stress. If you want some added protection, when you finish fishing for the night, remove and add some fresh water from wherever you are fishing. The batteries will last about two days.