smallmouth in a pond

Discussion in 'Pond Management' started by imalt, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. imalt

    imalt Banned

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    Is it possible to keep small mouth in a farmpond if I make it specific to them. I have lm population in another pond but actually enjoy fishing creeks for sm. Wanted to know if it would be possible to keep them in a 30 x 40 pond about 11ft deep. Pond is completely shaded in the woods so water temp would stay lower. Any advice would be appreciated.
     
  2. My friend has a pond with smallmouths. they do pretty well in his pond and his pond can get like bath water very easily. i think they should fine as long as you stock some fathead minnows with them.:G
     

  3. They do fine in typical farm ponds assuming there's food. They're not generally used because forage of appropriate size and quanitity is not easily produced in a farm pond. Bluegills quickly outgrow their mouths and fatheads are quickly eliminated. Their generally isn't adequate structure for golden shiners and they aren't heavy producers either. Crawfish are hard to establish too. A 30 x 40 pond will only produce enough forage for 6lbs of bass. Fortuately wild smallmouth seem to take to commercial feed more readily than Largemouth so supplemental feeding may be your only option. Even with supplemental feeding, you'll likely only triple you're capacity.
     
  4. Fishman

    Fishman Catch bait???

    It's an up hill battle as the others have stated, you'll also have to add some type of sand or gravel substrate for them to spawn on consistantly. Even if you add it, it often get's silted over and the male's seem terribly lazy about cleaning it off to spawn on. It's almost as if they don't want the hassel of it all.
     
  5. I would not encourage spawning of smallmouth in a 30x40 pond. A pond this size can not support but a few predators.
     
  6. Fishman

    Fishman Catch bait???

    You'de be crazy to not allow some natural reproduction occuring, you'll eventually need more predators to replace the ones that are removed to eat, die from fishing, or naturally. Smallmouth arn't cheap, I don't care where you buy'em from.... that's beside the point really... the bottom line is your sunfish population is predisposed to being a strong spawner because they are intended to be preyed pond. A pond in essence is a garden. As if smallmouths arn't hard enough to spawn already, I think the pond owner should give them an opportunity to do so. If your lucky you might have a pair spawn, and a fry surivive to being a adult if you're lucky. In a 30x40 pond, or 300x400 - if you stocked with the right number to begin with there would be no problem what-so-ever letting them try to spawn.
     
  7. fxs

    fxs

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    Why do you want to segregate the smallmouth from the large? I have both and they do fine. Largest sm is 22" and around 6 lbs.
     
  8. Fishman

    Fishman Catch bait???

    Largemouth bass will ultimatley become the dominant predator in your typical farm pond in Ohio, but you can definitally grow some darn nice smallies mixed in with your largemouth, expect to if ever see young smallmouth though.
     
  9. striperfreak

    striperfreak stripes and smallies

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    If i remember correctly, i learned in fish management class smallies can do well if shiners are stocked annually.
     
  10. imalt

    imalt Banned

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    the only reason i was seperating them was I have a larger pond that already has lm on it. I just was experimenting. I heard the shiner thing too.
     
  11. Then I must be crazy Fishman. I'd rather have two 3lbers than twelve 1/4 lbers anyday. But fat fish is my goal.

    IMALT, it just depends on what your goals are.

    Personally, if I had a 30x40 pond in addition to my other pond, I would probably use the small one to produce additional forage such as fatheads or golden shiners for the big pond. As others have stated, having a few smallies mixed in with the largemouths in the big pond will probably work fine just keep in mind that they are another mouth to feed.
     
  12. Fishman

    Fishman Catch bait???

    haha, I see what you're saying, don't get me wrong :) Just trying to answer the guys question.
     
  13. Me too Fishman, these questions never are really all that simple. Of course we could have just answered "Yes" to his question.

    To further explain my recommendation, I was calculating the 30x40 pond at 1200 sq. ft. or .0275 acres. As a general rule of thumb, a pond will produce enough forage to support 100 lbs. of bass or in the case of a 30x40 pond 2.75lbs. I doubled that to 6lbs. simply going for best case scenario and figuring Imalt could supplementally feed cheaply if necessary.

    However, Since it's shaded it is just as likely that it could only support 1.5 lbs of bass or even less. Depth really doesn't matter much once you get deeper than 7' in Ohio unless it's aerated too.

    There's probably at least a dozen other factors to consider but at this point Imalt should be able to decide whether it's really worth pursuing.
     
  14. Fishman

    Fishman Catch bait???

  15. imalt

    imalt Banned

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    I will more than likely throw some bluegill in there and some baitfish see what happens I might try putting some smallies in the big pond once I get everything together with it. Thanks for the help
     
  16. cbebarker

    cbebarker Southwestern Ohio

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    I've been trying to get it to work for a few years but haven't had much luck. They obviously won't reproduce and they lose that monster fight after they've been in the pond for a while. They will live for several years depending on the natural environment but unless you can re-create moving water like river or creek you'll never get it any better than what you get from those environments. Good luck!
     
  17. I stocked 2 smallies a few years ago. I caught a 10" meanmouth a couple of months ago. Too bad I didn't have my camera handy.