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rocknfish9001

in your expert opinion

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There is this lake i  just love to fish. It is small, probably about 25 acres, and is absoloutley full of fish. This lake is VERY VERY shallow. The deepest point is probably 6 feet and you can see the bottom around the entire lake. Now here is the great part. It is basically flooded out woods. Trees are EVERYWHERE. Not to mention lily pads. The only way we catch bass are on tiny 2-3inch rapalas, beetlespins, and over the imense lily pad fortresses, using horneytoads. These lilies are thick. The only boat you can get in there is a smaller jon/row boat. Trolling motors are useless. I have caught over 20 fish a day here, but the biggest one i have caught in there might go a tad over 2 lbs. and they average about 12-13 inches. Seeing that this lake is super fertile, is there big bass potential here, or is it too overun with little guys. I have seen big 30 inch plus pike though.

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There is always big bass potential, if the right bass is making the right decisions.

Though it sounds like the potential is slim with your descriptions.

6 feet at the deepest...that rules out going deep for bigg'ns.

Is it spring fed?

I'd guess the biggest fish will be in the thickest of cover in a predators disney land like that.

Good luck!

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"in your expert opinion"

Just a disclaimer, my opinion is light years from "expert."

I fished a pond for a few years and of 300+ bass caught, only two were bigger than 14". I think it was reasonable to assume that there were not many larger bass in there. I believe that you'll catch some larger bass, if they're present,  in the normal course of fishing, even if you're not specifically targeting larger ones. At least that's been my personal experience.

So if you catch enough fish and don't have anything large to show for it, that pond could be like the one I talked about. Of course, you want to make sure that you've fished it under good conditions, such as low light, pre-spawn, etc.

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Sorry man,

It is very unlikely that there are any big bass or ever will be. If this is a pond where you are allowed to keep fish, it would be beneficial if you and your friends kept the legal limit ALL of the time. At some point the predator ratio might be reduced, but the pond is probably lost.

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A horny toad on the pads is good, but also try ripping a crank bait through...if its real tough use heavy braided line ( 35-50 lb ) if there are big bass in there, thats where they may be hiding.

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Like RW said start harvesting the smaller bass out and see what the results will be in a couple years.

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Yes, there is fantastic potential for some very big bass.

Right now, the fish population is stable.  The only way to produce big bass would be to weed out the medium sized fish in the lake.  There are not enough or even any large fish that can eat the middle sized fish.  When the bass spawn, these middle sized fish eat the fry because there are too many middle sized fish.  The small bass do not even produce as many eggs.

Weeding out the middle sized fish will leave you with a population of larger fish and small fish.  The larger fish will eat the small fish, will produce lots of bass fry and there will be less predation of the fry.  The large fish will get even larger because there will be lots of food for them.  These large fish will reduce the population of the small and middle sized fish which in turn also leaves more food for the small bass fry who have less competiton for the very small sized organismes.

A 25 acre lake will never produce a large number of very large bass but as long as these very large bass are not killed off, their number will increase.  The "bio-mass" of the lake will remain the same as it is now but the bio-mass will be replaced with very large fish, fewer middle sized fish.

Think about it in reverse.  Imagine a lake with only very large fish.  Add small and medium sized fish and they will almost all be eaten by the very large fish.  When a few very old large fish die, they will be replaced by the next sized fish.

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It's hard to say w/o knowing the whole story, but a 25 acre lake could do very well. I have one I fish that has a couple 8's, 1 9lb, etc. They electro-fish it every couple of years, and number continue to increase.

The draw back is people are starting to find out about the fish in there, and it's low now, so the cover is somewhat visible. >:(

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Like everyone else said...start weeding out the average size fish.  It sounds like you have stunted fish population.  If the lake/pond can sustain the large biomass of fish that are apparently in there then I think you could start getting some bigger fish if you start removing some.   Fish populations become stunted because there is only enough food to feed a certain biomass of fish.  With too many fish competing for the same food they will never grow large.  If you remove a significant number of average size fish there will be more food for the remaining fish which should start growing them larger.  Just how large can they get...don't know...you'll have to see.  Good luck.

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The hard part about trying to improve fishing in most lakes is to convince people to release the large fish.  Get a person who has never caught a 5 or 6 lb bass in all his life and try to convince him that if he releases that fish, it can grow into an 8 or 10 lb bass, is quite difficult.

When a person catches a real monster fish, keeping that fish is not much of a problem either.  These fish are often near the end of their life cycle.  The spawning potential of these very large old fish can be quite small.   For those who want to mount their huge fish, it's a simple matter to take measurements of the fish, some good photos and get a reproduction that will look more lifelike, cost less and last longer than the old style of using the skin of the dead fish to mount it.

Those that like to eat fish (I am one of them), the mid sized fish are excellent eating.  I see no problem in someone keeping his limit of mid sized fish.  In fact, these fish are most often healthier to eat due to their younger age.

Imagine having a place where the fishing is good, some very large fish for that extra thrill and enough middle sized fish for a good meal.

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I see the experts are out in full force on this thread.  ;D

My past expert experience has shown that even a lake loaded with stunted fish usually has one or two really large bass in it.  

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True cart7...I fish a small local pond where out of hundreds of fish I have caught there, the average size is less than a pound. But I have caught two 5 lbers out of there, and they were definitely different fish

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cart7,

The biggest largemouth I have ever seen (in person) was caught in The Secret Pond. I have caught several bass over 5 lbs in this pond. However, the pond is dying or dead. It is now completely overrun by stunted bass. It is a private pond and it cannot recover. I may fish it a few more times, but I am basically done with it after this year.

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Guest avid

There is a difference between 'small' bass and 'stunted' bass.

small bass are normal but young bass.

stunted bass are the result of overpopulation.  They are small due to too many bass in the system.  They often have a larger head to body ratio than healthy bass.

Your fishing beetles spins and other panfish lures and so of course your not catching bigger fish.   Get out some weedless REAl bass baits.  Horny toads, spro bronzeye frog, t-rigged beavers weeless jigs etc.  Put a heavy I mean HEAVY like a 1 oz. pegged sinker in front of a tube, beaver bait or paddle type worm and penetrate that weed cover.  

 I agree that you need to start culling big time, but unless your bass are truly "stunted" i can't believe that there aren't a couple of 5 lbers in there.

Go get em

avid

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Maybe I missed something here but did I read "PROBABLE 6' deep ???   We don't have enough info on this lake. Did I also see that it has 30+" pike ?    I have to ask > Is this a private lake or open to the public? Have you ever gone out on this lake? or just walk around it taking guesses. Does it recieve fishing pressure ?   . Car7!  I understand! It going to hold some big bass but per size of lake as Car7  said.  I'm with the bass doc also.  I have a lake near my home that is( Lilly pads) weed chocked from June to Oct. and the rest of the time garbage. Its 3 feet deep + 3 feet mud. About 80 acres. No one fishes because they can't get aboat in and if they wade they probable never be seen again. Only a few places to shore fish (very limited)  Its got bass galore and I've seen some big ones in spring that would make a run for the record .(state record) and so the story goes> Size or depth of lake will not block a trophy bass . How many it holds is a factor. If you go to a small farm pond (2acres) that allows no fishing and has bass > your going to find a few big ones but a small number (over 5 lbs) compared to the rest of the population. You can fish a small pond out but its going to take alot more to fisha 25 acre lake out. I think you ought to spend more time on the lake and you'll find your answers.  

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