minnow buckets - metal or plastic??

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by rossco, Jun 1, 2008.

  1. Earlier this month, I bought a new Frabil galvanized minnow bucket. I remember my grandpa having one when I was a kid and figured that it would last a long time. However, it doesn't seem to keep the minnows alive for very long. Within an hour, they start dying off and its not uncommon in two hours to have a dozen or more floaters. In the earlier part of the season, I didn't have a regular minnow bucket, so I'd been using a small plastic bucket that I picked up for 50 cents outside the local bakery. With this bucket, I could literally leave two dozen minnows in it for a week, changing the water every other day or so and they'd stay alive. With my new galvanized bucket, all of them die off within 24 hours or so. Has anyone else had this problem with the metal buckets? Is there anything that I can put in the water, etc to help this? Any help is appreciated.
  2. freyedknot

    freyedknot useless poster

    you have to keep the bucket in the lake water off the side of the boat to keep fresh cool water in the bucket. or an aireator in the bucket and an ice cube now and then helps too.

  3. Pigsticker

    Pigsticker State record bass or bust

    Styrofoam is the way to go IMO.
  4. Metal conducts heat better than plastic so the water will warm quicker, it is also more likely to leech minerals or chemicals into the water.
  5. Years ago I had a galvanized bucket. For a while it worked about like you describe, then all at once the minnows would die almost immediately. A bait shop told me that there is a chemical reaction on the galvanization that will kill the bait. Bought a foam one and problem solved
  6. I don't know about chemical reactions, but I would definitely dump the nostalgic metal bucket in favor of the advice given above. It doesn't take long for minnows to go belly up once the water warms to a certain temp.

    Personally, I like a floating minnow bucket for use on the lake. When I get home I transfer the minnows & water to a styrofoam container and place it on a cool concrete floor. Plug in a cheap walmart aquarium pump w/bubble stone and forget about it.

    The battery operated bubblers are nice to have on the water when you can't dunk your minnies for whatever reason, but they're too noisy for my taste.

    Good luck.
  7. I would go with the styrofoam as well, I have a Plano plastic lined with styrofoam on the inside, ice really helps to..almost a must if you buy a few dozen minnows, the cooler months are great because you can keep minnows forever.
  8. If plastic, I like the Flow-Troll to hang over the side, but the styrofoam works the best. Just don't leave the styrofoam ones in the boat for the ride home ..... I buy a a new one about every year after the old one flies out !!
  9. in my exp. the water temp is what does minnows in. i've put 2 dozen crappie minnows in a 5 gallon plastic bucket at 85 degrees and had them die before i got to the lake. i keep 2-3 dozen in a 2 lb. plastic coffee can for ice fishing and they will live for 2-3 weeks, as long as they don't freeze solid. i'll dump a handfull of snow in when i think of it, and keep the can where it won't freeze or get too warm. being cold blooded critters, minnows need less oxygen when they're kept cold. on the other hand, if you're water is cold in you're bucket, and the water is warm, the shock will kill 'em. hope this helps.
  10. I have a metal one but it was given to me. I usually throw it in the water so my minnies last longer. Im thinking about going to the foam and setting up a 10 gallon with air in my garage for any left overs.
  11. Fishman

    Fishman Catch bait???

    It's a water temperature issue. Warmer water holds consideribly less oxygen than cooler water. Interesting observation on your behalf :)
  12. pizza


    "A bait shop told me that there is a chemical reaction on the galvanization that will kill the bait."

    This is complete BS. The kinetics of any such reaction (ie rusting) are way too slow.
  13. I got a two speed bubbler with a water resistant case at T's Long Lake Bait & Tackle. While it still makes noise, it is surprisingly quiet on the low speed and still puts out plenty of bubbles.

    Also, I've never used them but I've heard the oxygen tablets work pretty good.

    I have a plastic bucket but w/o foam and adding ice cubes from time to time to keep the water cool has made a difference for me too. But as foundationfisher noted, you don't want the temperature difference between the bucket and the lake water to be too great. Next time I will get one with foam. I don't like the flowtroll type only because it's too much trouble to haul it in & out so much.