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Crappie don’t belong in ponds ?


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If you have baby crappie eaters you won’t have issues in a pond....it’s all about balance....bug zappers are great pond feeders....like any good fishery it’s about management every water is different....my fantasy is a 10 acre spring fed rock quarry....know where one is just need a few million to buy it.....spend many a day dream on how I’d go about it

MONKEYS? what monkeys?

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MDC doesn’t recommend crappie in ponds. I have fished this 1/2 acre pond 10 times and have mostly caught bass, some big (over 5 lbs).  I’ve caught 2 crappie over 15”. The pics are of my PB crappie yes

I built a 5 ac pond.  In the spring fathead minnows, bluegill, coppernose bluegill, redears.  Next spring smallmouth...don't ask me how much I paid for 100 4-5" smallmouth.  In the fall largemouth and

Well, if you like crappie you should put them in your pond, no matter what anyone says. As a kid, I caught huge crappie in a pond in south OK with my uncle.  I caught them as a kid in ponds in Ka

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All the ponds we fished when growing up in south Oklahoma had both bass and crappie. There were occasional ponds that were overrun by juvenile fish of both species but that's an easy fix. Takes a little time, but you can correct it.

Most of the ponds would produce monsters from both species. 

“Anybody opens their mouth, gonna get a bullet. Anybody moves a little weird, little sudden, gonna get a bullet. Not a warning. Not a question. A bullet.”  - Major Marquis Warren

 

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I never did understand the science, because it doesn't prove untrue in southern ponds, but also in northern ponds... case in point.... My son was 4 yrs old when I took him to a sheep farm pond in Ohio (cold climate) in the Tappan Lake area.  It was his first fishing trip, but I didn't spend time with him prior to us making the trip, ie how to set the hook in the backyard, casting etc.  He would sit back, cast, then say Dad, my bobbers gone over and over.  He missed fish after fish because he had to let me know that his bobber was gone so that I could tell him to set the hook.  Most of the crappie were over 10 inches and then there were some huge bass.  Few and far between considering how many crappie we caught.  His PB crappie was 16" and a strict fatty...it was hillarious because he kept trying to get me to take the pole and pull it in and I wouldn't.  Didn't have a scale back then, but I haven't caught many crappie as big as the one he caught that day (I eventually helped him, but he had the biggest grin on his face).  Then I moved my family here and met a friend in Strafford that new a landowner who had a small pond.  Just about every 'gill we caught were as big as my hand and I can palm a basketball (well let's say that I used to be able to...getting old...lol).  But, every largemouth we caught were very nice.  So I think that it all comes down to pond management.  I now own close to 7 acres with 3 being wooded...looking to take out some trees and building a pond of about 1.5 acres...besides bass and cats I WILL be stocking CRAPPIE regardless of what MDC states on pond management. I truly don't believe that it can't be done if managed correctly.  My motto has alway been, " If you have access to a pond, especially if it is not fished on a regular basis with catch and release on the bigger bass and cats, YOU WILL catch some great bluegill and/or crappie if they were stocked.

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I'm a firm believer in the effectiveness of C&R in growing big fish in the public ponds I used to fish in Iowa.  They were stocked one time and then left unmanaged.  I witnessed several ponds get destroyed in a single day by folks poaching more than their limit, whether it was plucking the big male bluegills off their nests, or harvesting the big bass.

The City was adamant they NEVER stocked crappies in any of the city ponds, but they found their way into nearly every one.  A friend who flyfished private farm ponds had a different technique for managing these ponds that were rarely fished by others... He kept all the bluegills UNDER 10", and ALL the crappies he caught.  He would share his catch with the landowners and others in his small rural community.  Whether it was his management strategy or the overall low angling pressure....the ponds he was involved in consistently produced big crappies and bluegills.

There are a number of good studies (Minnesota, for example) you can find online, and I think there was an In-Fisherman article as well that was well-written, about the importance of harvesting small bluegills and protecting the big male bluegills.  I can't say how bluegill management relates to crappie management.

You can manage ponds for whatever species you wish.  If you are renovating an old pond or building a new one, I strongly urge you to talk to the Herman Brothers, they have always been very helpful in answering my questions.  They are based in Illinois, but have done projects in many states.

https://www.hbpondmanagement.com/

You may be familiar with Bruce Condello in Lincoln, Nebraska?  He has been experimenting successfully for years in growing huge fish in ponds...including crappies.  You should totally listen to his advice.

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FishnDave not meant to rebutt what you are saying at all...You are right on both fronts.  Releasing of the King/Queen (bigger fish) give the breed/brood stock that you need to reproduce bigger fish (first heard by me from an article by Doug Stange).  Then to let those bigger fish go they are big enough to eat the smaller and stunted fish (Big eyes etc. in comparison to body size).  We are truly on the same page.  Although I don't have an issue with people keeping bass for the table I never do within a slot... and on the rivers I don't at all... But again, those fish we caught in Strafford were because of very low fishing pressure and fish big enough bass/catfish that had no other forage outside of the new year minnows, bugs etc that they had to live on....but you are right.

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I think there are a lot of factors in whether a pond can grow big crappie.  Two biggest ones are predation (no matter if it's bass and catfish or people) and food availability.  All other things being equal, the fewer crappie you have for the forage base, the bigger they get.  It's a little tough to get a good forage base for crappie going in the typical small pond stocked with bass and bluegill.  But they keep reproducing, and probably eating a ton of the little bass and bluegill.  I've known ponds that had crappie that every one of them was so small it was almost transparent.  And other ponds that have fine crappie, including one little pond that had huge ones, but not many of them.  A nephew got permission to fish it and took out a few dozen 2-3 pounders (and a couple considerably bigger than that) and the fishing dropped to almost nothing.  But I guess my main point is, you need to do a couple things to grow big crappie in ponds...diversify the forage base, and make sure plenty of smaller crappie are taken out.  Stock it with a ton of fathead minnows, in the spring before they spawn, and hope that they pull off a good spawn and get themselves established, would seem to me to be one idea.  

As for protecting the big crappie to make the gene pool better, well, big crappie got that way by living for a while AFTER they first started spawning.  Seems to me they've already passed along their genes before they get truly big.  Maybe they are better, more experienced spawners that lay more eggs, but at the same time once they get too old they start to decline in number of eggs laid, etc.  I think you protect big crappie so those big crappie will be fun to catch and MAYBE good spawners.  More importantly, you take out a lot of crappie in the middle, because some of them MIGHT have poor genetics.  And keep taking them out down to barely big enough to eat.  And perhaps most importantly, you should pay attention to what's happening, and if the fishing starts to decline either from not enough fish or too many fish, do something different.

I don't have crappie in my pond, though somebody once sneaked in a couple.  I caught them several times, always in the same spot, never caught a crappie anywhere else in the pond.  I think they were both males, and they got pretty big, maybe two pounds, before they disappeared.  But my pond simply doesn't have a good enough forage base for either bass or bluegill.  Basically they eat each other.  I keep them reasonably good sized by taking out around 70 bluegill and 20 or so bass a year for this pond that's a little under an acre, and I'm pretty much the only one who fishes it.  But although my bluegill males are mostly around 10 inches long, well bigger than my hand, they aren't very thick because there just isn't enough to eat.  The pond is in sandstone, acidic water, and just doesn't grow the kind of forage base that a pond in limestone will.

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I found a couple of the bluegill management articles.  I know it isn't about crappies, which is what this thread is about...but it is still very interesting and worth the time spent reading these.

https://www.in-fisherman.com/editorial/managing-bluegills/154251

https://www.in-fisherman.com/editorial/managing-for-big-bluegills/382986

 

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Years ago someone put Crappie in a small lake South of Tipton, MO. 
 

The MDC wasn’t going to open it. They was going to kill the lake and restock it.

I guess the Bass decided to clean up on Crappie so MDC went ahead and open the lake.

I’ve caught some big Shell Crackers out of there.

I tell you the worst thing on ponds is small Perch that nobody stocks. People should keep all they catch.

I stocked a pond with Channel Catfish and Hybrid Bluegill and have been happy with it.

oneshot

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