Looking for a good predatory fish for my pond


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What I'm looking for is a really good predatory fish for my 2500 gallon pond. I currently have 3 Koi and about 20 goldfish in it. I'm trying to keep the numbers down but they are breeding like crazy. I would like something that stays fairly small and has a small mouth so it can't take down larger fish. I would also like something that I don't have to remove as it grows to large. Any idea's on some kind of fish that fits this bill? Thanks...
 
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I have a ton of fry and quite a few that already has grown to the size the other fish can't eat them now... I'm quite worried. I don't want to have extra fish to deal with. I want to keep my pond very lean with fish so it's easier to deal with. I would still appreciate some suggestions on true predatory fish that would work in my system...
 
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Yeah, I know... I was thinking of something along some type of bass however a large mouth will get big quick and could possibly get to the size of taking down very large fish. Also would be hard to catch out of the pond. I just know that fry are making it in my system and I can see right now that I'm going to have a crowding issue before long unless I do something about it now... :banghead3:
 
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haha, yeah, I can see it now, every fall I would have to take my pole and spinner bait out and go fishing...
 

Robyn

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Great circle of life you would have there!

Get a baby bass in spring.
The bass eats the eggs and fry all summer.
The bass eats pellet food in fall... chock full of vitamins and carbs!
You eat the bass.
Rinse and repeat! LOL
 
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I'm thinking a single bluegill might be the solution ( or at least a better solution than I have now ). Their mouths stay really small and they would fair well over winter and I could just leave it be. I'm still researching though....
 
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Where are you? If you post on Craigslist (etc.), I bet other pond-keepers would love a shot at some free pond fishies! :profile: Perhaps you could even trade?

(or if it gets out of hand, you could start a small business....) :eek2:
 
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Robyn

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I would not recommend perch.

Perch are the first fish to die off in a polluted ecosystem. Koi and goldies are dirty fish. I just do not think that a perch will do well... and may actually go belly up.
 
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Thanks, I started talking on a North American fish forum and decided after talking to them to get a couple of Green Pickerels. They should never reach the size to eat my bigger fish but are very effective predators and will do well through the winter. Thanks for the replies...
 
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Jasonmo928, I cannot directly answer your question, as I have never tried that approach. A single bluegill, properly fed, will grow to about 10 inches. They are EXTREMELY territorial when mating (not a problem with only one), I do not know how bad they are other times. A crappie (also known as a Calico Bass) might work as well, although they grow slightly larger (not as large as a bass). They are in the family Centrarchidae, same as the bluegill. They are quite active in the winter, being a popular ice-fishing quarry. The good news, if it does become too large, they are considered one of the most delicious native freshwater fish in America.

I have a pond half the size of yours with about half as many fish. I too have a number of fry that survived past the fish food stage, fifteen last year. I decided to give most of them away, until that is, I actually tried to net them. The first one took about ten seconds, the second one about a half hour. I did not catch another one for about two weeks. Anyone who thinks goldfish are dumb or have a short memory should try netting a second one in a pond full of plants.

I have more fry again this year, still very small. I do not know how many will survive, but they will have to go. I will probably net them very early next spring when the water is still cold and there are no plants in the water. I do though have concerns about stressing the fish at that time of the year.

A heron took a few this spring, but is also took a few of the adults. Now if I could only teach the heron which fish it can eat, problem solved.

Another idea I had running around inside my head was to place a large screen or net of some type on the bottom of the pond, with line tied to each corner. After a few days (or how ever long it takes) when the fish become used to it I would feed them over the net and then quickly lift it. It all sounds too easy, I am sure.

Good luck with whatever you try.
 
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kelli said:
Where are you? If you post on Craigslist (etc.), I bet other pond-keepers would love a shot at some free pond fishies! :) Perhaps you could even trade?

(or if it gets out of hand, you could start a small business....) :eek2:

hehe, well I don't ever mix business with fun, it makes it no fun! ;) At any rate I have people with ponds constantly asking me if I want more fish so I'm not sure they would be that easy to get rid of. Especially seeing as most of the producing fish are comets... If it were my Koi or fancy goldfish I wouldn't mind nearly as much because I know they would be easy to get rid of. Then again, I honestly don't want to bother with catching them out, it's a real pain...
 
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PHYLAL said:
Jasonmo928, I cannot directly answer your question, as I have never tried that approach. A single bluegill, properly fed, will grow to about 10 inches. They are EXTREMELY territorial when mating (not a problem with only one), I do not know how bad they are other times. A crappie (also known as a Calico Bass) might work as well, although they grow slightly larger (not as large as a bass). They are in the family Centrarchidae, same as the bluegill. They are quite active in the winter, being a popular ice-fishing quarry. The good news, if it does become too large, they are considered one of the most delicious native freshwater fish in America.

I have a pond half the size of yours with about half as many fish. I too have a number of fry that survived past the fish food stage, fifteen last year. I decided to give most of them away, until that is, I actually tried to net them. The first one took about ten seconds, the second one about a half hour. I did not catch another one for about two weeks. Anyone who thinks goldfish are dumb or have a short memory should try netting a second one in a pond full of plants.

I have more fry again this year, still very small. I do not know how many will survive, but they will have to go. I will probably net them very early next spring when the water is still cold and there are no plants in the water. I do though have concerns about stressing the fish at that time of the year.

A heron took a few this spring, but is also took a few of the adults. Now if I could only teach the heron which fish it can eat, problem solved.

Another idea I had running around inside my head was to place a large screen or net of some type on the bottom of the pond, with line tied to each corner. After a few days (or how ever long it takes) when the fish become used to it I would feed them over the net and then quickly lift it. It all sounds too easy, I am sure.

Good luck with whatever you try.

Thanks, I will let you know how the Grass Pickerel works out. They are 100% non-aggressive or territorial, they are a slender fish so they can't very easily eat fish like fan tails or koi... They get between 10-12" long and if they ever do become a problem I know of a forum that many people keep them in large tanks that I can put them up for adoption and most likely someone will take them. I just hope I can leave them in there and they do a good job...
 

DrDave

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Robyn said:
Great circle of life you would have there!

Get a baby bass in spring.
The bass eats the eggs and fry all summer.
The bass eats pellet food in fall... chock full of vitamins and carbs!
You eat the bass.
Rinse and repeat! LOL

I like the way you think...
 

Robyn

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DrDave said:
I like the way you think...

This is what happens to high IQ insomniacs. We get weird and brilliant thoughts on how to make the world a better place at 2 AM. LOL

I read on one of the forums of a guy in So Cal that wanted a pond to put talapia in. Now THAT is a great idea! LOL

I DO have a friend with a huge sunfish tank. Sunfish are really pretty fish. And VERY tasty! LOL
 
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I have used perch in the past. (I live in Germany. Here they are called Flussbarsch). It depends on how cold hearted you are, but...

Four or five perch will eat everything they can get their mouths around. If it wiggles, it's gone. A baby free pond in a few days, depending on how many you want to purchase. The only problem is, they need perfect water numbers. PH, KH, ammonia, etc... Very finicky when it comes to the water.

Buy two, let them do their work, if they don't bother your bigger fish, leave them. They don't attack bigger fish. You might even see some aerial acrobatics as they go for flying insects above the surface.

Breeding is pretty hard for them but, if you have standing grasses, it is possible. However, they are delicious (white perch, in particular.) Catch them and have a feast.

If they become a nuisance, let your KH get too high for a few days. They die off pretty quickly. I found out the hard way, if you use some crushed stone to weigh down your plants (I keep my plants in pots) your KH will shoot through the roof.

It doesn't bother my Koi, Goldfish or Grass Carp. But, it killed the white perch in a day.

Simply another suggestion.
 

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