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Should I put tilapia in our pond?


ATA

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Hi,

 

For those who don't know, We have a small pond .5 acre 15' deep in deepest place, The one that I stock LMB few months back. We have bluegills and catfish also in that pond and that's a very stables lake 18years old. Now daughter thinking to stock some tilapia, I am not sure if it is a good idea and she insisting. So guys what you think? Should we put some or not? If your answer is yes,How many you recommending?

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I wouldn't unless your water temps get cold enough in the winter to kill them.   They're prolific breeders and will take over a small body of water in no time in warm climates.    

 

Imho get those Catfish out if Bass are the primary focus as well.   You just want the Bass, Bluegills, and in terms of supplemental forage stocking, you can't go wrong with dumping a ton of Threadfins in there.     

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40 minutes ago, AlabamaSpothunter said:

Imho get those Catfish out if Bass are the primary focus as well

in this pond bass are not primary focus, But new bass pond we building is our bass pond. So you saying no catfish in new bass pond?

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So no need any bottom eater/cleaner fish and the pond will be ok?

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58 minutes ago, ATA said:

So no need any bottom eater/cleaner fish and the pond will be ok?

No cats, no carp.....cats aren't actually bottom eaters in the hierarchy of the foodchain, they are competing directly with Bass for forage.   Carp on the other hand can out breed Bass which destroys a small pond's carrying capacity, and equally as bad feed on the lake's best Bass habitat, the aquatic grasses.   

 

This is a rabbit hole if you really want to grow huge Bass which in your rare case, actually can due to the your climate.   Bob Lusk the Pond Boss is beyond reproach, he is the man to learn from.   

 

You need three things to grow big Bass

 

Water quality  You need to check the PH and adjust if need be and then "fertilize" yearly for the plankton and zooplankton blooms that occur in the spring each year.  The micro organisms are the building block of all life in your fishery.

 

Forage base....since you got your quality right, you can stock Threadfins which feed on the phytoplankton, along with your Bluegill.   

 

Habitat.....Both Big Bass and their prey/offspring needs good habitat in order to thrive, this can be a mix of natural aquatic grasses native to your area, or manmade cover, wood laydowns you might create, fish caves, etc.   

 

Let the forage base establish for a few months, then add F1/Tiger/Gorilla/Lonestar Bass fingerlings into the pond.

 

Don't stock anything but the above!  

 

Lastly wait about 5-6yrs and start catching homemade DD Bass 

 

 

 

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57 minutes ago, ATA said:

So no need any bottom eater/cleaner fish and the pond will be ok?

Call bob lusk, and check out his forum too. But everyone I know with catfish in their bass pond is trying to get them out. 

 

Should talk to him about the tilapia too. We use them for combo grass control and bass forage in north texas. But we always get cold enough to knock them out so low risk of them over-breeding. 

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@txchaser  Brother from another mother, great minds think alike. 

 

Bob Lusk is the end all for small pond management.   Steven Bardain is the same for big lake management.   Study those two dudes, and you'll learn a ton about Bass.  

 

ETA:  If algae becomes a concern there are products that you can buy that help, but good water quality goes a long ways. 

 

I wouldn't ever resort to putting Cats or Carps, or even Crappie in a small pond being managed for big Bass.   That's a hard and fast rule.    

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