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moguy1973

Do Bass Feed On Baby Catfish?

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Reason why I ask if bass feed on baby catfish is that my brother-in-law and sister-in-law have 2 ponds behind their house.  One is a nice 2-3 acre pond that is chocked full of small LM bass (with some 4lb+ mixed in), large 5lb+ catfish, and large bluegill.  The other pond is about 1/2-3/4 of an acre and has big carp and is probably overloaded with catfish.  We see schools of probably 100 or so fingerling catfish swimming on the surface throughout the day.  They had both lakes shocked by the conservation department a couple years ago during a stocking, and they said the larger pond has an overpopulation of bass and the smaller one has way too many catfish.  We've slowly been transferring small bass (less than 10") up to the smaller pond from the bigger one since then.  We don't think there are too many bluegill for forage in the smaller pond or at least we haven't caught many out of there.  Usually when fishing with worms we catch a catfish every cast or so. 

 

Anyways, this year while fishing the smaller pond they've been catching quite a few larger bass in the 16-18" range.  So they are feeding on something in there and I was just wondering if they are in fact eating the small catfish.  They all have been really skinny bass though.  My wife caught one this past weekend that was 18.5" but it was only 1lb 11oz.  That should be at least a 3lb fish if it was nourished well.  We would start transferring some bluegill up to the smaller pond too but we are worried that they would get annihilated by the bigger catfish that are in the small pond and wouldn't have a chance to reproduce enough to feed the bass and the catfish both.

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Bass are optimistic and will eat just about anything they can get in there mouth, here in a local river we have stonecatfish and the smallies love them, old timers here use them for live bait.  I have a few ponds I fish that have just LMB in them, no other fish including bluegills the bass are on the thin side, but they still eat, lots of insects, mice, moles, turtles, snakes, other bass...

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This spring for about a week every bass I caught had a catfish tail hanging out of their mouths. The first couple I thought were shad but then I caught one with only the head in the throat and I was able to GENTLY remove it with hemostats to see what it was. About a 3" channel catfish. Didnt surprise me, that week I probably snagged 30 of those little catfish by accident. Last year must have been a good hatch. 

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I wish i could find a pond that was overpopulated with bass.    

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Does a bear dookie in the woods?

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Does a bear dookie in the woods?

 

Only if someone is around to hear it.

 

That's how it goes, right?

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