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Old 09-22-2017, 07:22 AM   #1
TexasLongball
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Default Turning a "cattle pond" into a fishing pond

Hey everyone,
We have a very small cattle pond on our lease and that I would love to have a few fish in. I have no idea how deep it is but I plan on just chunking some lead weights with a slip bobber in a few places to measure depth.

My question is this:
What are some prerequisites that must be satisfied before turning fish loose in there? i.e vegetation, cover, water quality, determining number of fish given a certain volume of water.

I assume it's habitable. There are a ton of frogs and I've seen 2 very small fish that a turtle was chewing on. I'd love to have some fish to catch and release during days out there. Thanks in advance!
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Old 09-22-2017, 07:26 AM   #2
Skinny
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Default Turning a "cattle pond" into a fishing pond

Gotta keep cattle out of it or you're spinning your wheels!

They will trample any and all vegetation.


Skinny

Last edited by Skinny; 09-22-2017 at 07:32 AM.
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Old 09-22-2017, 07:26 AM   #3
Bowtech38
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My first guess would be shoot the turtles so they stop eating the fish after that i have no clue
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Old 09-22-2017, 07:31 AM   #4
Antlers86
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Sure it's not a "cattle tank"?????

Good luck.
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Old 09-22-2017, 07:34 AM   #5
fullsizeaggie
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Clear things with landowner first. Best start would be to fence off most of the tank and provide a single entrance to water. Even better if you can use cattle panels so that you can change the entrance to minimize erosion. Then let nature take its course.
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Old 09-22-2017, 07:35 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skinny View Post
Gotta keep cattle out of it or you're spinning your wheels!

They will trample any and all vegetation.

Skinny
I was referring to vegetation in the water. They've beaten down everything around it.

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My first guess would be shoot the turtles so they stop eating the fish after that i have no clue
Yeah, I've got a son with a .22 that is about to be turned loose.

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Sure it's not a "cattle tank"?????

Good luck.
Well played.
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Old 09-22-2017, 07:36 AM   #7
Skinny
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Yes I was talking about vegetation in the water since that's what you asked about. Cattle will trample it...which you already know as there is no vegetation in your "pond".


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Old 09-22-2017, 07:37 AM   #8
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Question # 1 : have you been granted permission by the landowner to convert his cattle watering hole into your personal pleasure fishing pond ?

If the answer is No, I would not go making "improvements" to someone else's land, especially when livestock are involved.

If Yes, then you will need to make sure it holds water. You make have to dig it deeper and wider then add clay. You will need vegetation for cover and some type of aeration. Cows will be your nemisis

Last edited by Cajun Blake; 09-22-2017 at 07:40 AM.
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Old 09-22-2017, 07:43 AM   #9
Dusty Britches
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Check out this design:

Floating Pipe for livestock water access

The document link goes to a one page pdf file with the design. It allows cattle access to the water but keeps them from destroying the water and area around it.
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Old 09-22-2017, 07:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
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Yes I was talking about vegetation in the water since that's what you asked about. Cattle will trample it...which you already know as there is no vegetation in your "pond".

Skinny
Ahh gotcha. I've only seen them around the edge so I thought you were talking about surrounding vegetation. And yeah they trample EVERYTHING.
God I hate cattle.

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Originally Posted by Cajun Blake View Post
Question # 1 : have you been granted permission by the landowner to convert his cattle watering hole into your personal pleasure fishing pond ?

If the answer is No, I would not go making "improvements" to someone else's land, especially when livestock are involved.

If Yes, then you will need to make sure it holds water. You make have to dig it deeper and wider then add clay. You will need vegetation for cover and some type of aeration. Cows will be your nemisis
I'm just brainstorming here. I wouldn't do anything without his consent. He leases the land to the neighbor for grazing. Everything would need to be cleared. I was just wondering what would happen if I released a few dozen catfish or something. Looks like I need to look at it in several additional angles.

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Originally Posted by Dusty Britches View Post
Check out this design:

Floating Pipe for livestock water access

The document link goes to a one page pdf file with the design. It allows cattle access to the water but keeps them from destroying the water and area around it.
Thanks!
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Old 09-22-2017, 08:10 AM   #11
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First thing I'd do is get me some worms and small hooks and turn that son loose on the pond with that! You might be surprised what's already in there... I have 2 small stock tanks/ponds on my place. The guy we bought it from had stocked one with catfish and perch. The other, he only put shiners and crappie in it... I've caught 3 1/2 pound bass out of one, and both are full of nice size bream/bluegill.... none of any of those were ever "stocked"... I used to thing the old "birds brought them" myth was just that, a myth, but I'd have to say I'm pretty much a believer now... You may already have fish in the tank...
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Old 09-22-2017, 09:14 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaltwaterSlick View Post
First thing I'd do is get me some worms and small hooks and turn that son loose on the pond with that! You might be surprised what's already in there... I have 2 small stock tanks/ponds on my place. The guy we bought it from had stocked one with catfish and perch. The other, he only put shiners and crappie in it... I've caught 3 1/2 pound bass out of one, and both are full of nice size bream/bluegill.... none of any of those were ever "stocked"... I used to thing the old "birds brought them" myth was just that, a myth, but I'd have to say I'm pretty much a believer now... You may already have fish in the tank...
I'll be doing just that!
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Old 09-22-2017, 09:21 AM   #13
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How large is it?
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Old 09-22-2017, 09:25 AM   #14
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As said above, shoot turtles and snakes as you find them.

Stock in Oct so it gives them a head start before the reptiles get active again. I am stocking a brand new pond I have in middle Oct.

Depending on the size and depth limit the species you put in there and ensure you over stock on plenty of bait fish. Fat head minnows and copper nose bream.
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Old 09-22-2017, 09:41 AM   #15
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How large is it?
Google Earth shows a diameter of 130'. So a circumference of 408' and surface area of .3 acres. Tiny.
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Old 09-22-2017, 09:44 AM   #16
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Google Earth shows a diameter of 130'. So a circumference of 408' and surface area of .3 acres. Tiny.
That size stock it with Coppernose Bluegill. I wouldn't bother putting anything else in it.
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Old 09-22-2017, 09:50 AM   #17
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First you need to have a starting point and know what is in there. Does it ever go dry? How deep? Check out pondboss.com.
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Old 09-22-2017, 10:02 AM   #18
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I bet there are fish in it already.
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Old 09-22-2017, 10:07 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skinny View Post
Gotta keep cattle out of it or you're spinning your wheels!

They will trample any and all vegetation.


Skinny
........and keep mud in suspension which prevents plankton and algae from growing which are the begaining of the food chain that new born fry eat.

The cattle also trample the fish breeding beds which are in shallow water.
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Old 09-22-2017, 10:15 AM   #20
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If it was me I wouldn't over think it, I'd just go catch some fish in another tank and then go put them in yours. Might be surprised what's already in there

My plan is the Saturday of the opener before the evening hunt to catch some bass at the deer lease and keep them in a cooler with aerator and dump them at my uncles after the hunt
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Old 09-22-2017, 10:25 AM   #21
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We have several ponds on our place. However, we have one small pond like the one you are describing, ours is only 1/3 of an acre and as far as we know it has never been stocked. I got bored one evening and grabbed some blood worms and headed out not expecting to catch much. I started catching tons of bluegill. I switched to a top water lure and started catching bass. I couldn't believe it. If you haven't fished it yet give it a shot, it might surprise you.
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Old 09-22-2017, 10:29 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianL View Post
First you need to have a starting point and know what is in there. Does it ever go dry? How deep? Check out pondboss.com.
I was told it is a spring fed pond. I've never seen it close to dry in 6 years I've been out there. I'll determine depth sometime during opening weekend.

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Originally Posted by denimdeerslayer View Post
I bet there are fish in it already.
That's what started this whole idea. I saw something popping the surface every time I rode by.

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Originally Posted by Tbar View Post
........and keep mud in suspension which prevents plankton and algae from growing which are the begaining of the food chain that new born fry eat.

The cattle also trample the fish breeding beds which are in shallow water.
This makes total sense as to why there isn't much vegetation growing and why the water is a little dark.

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If it was me I wouldn't over think it, I'd just go catch some fish in another tank and then go put them in yours. Might be surprised what's already in there
We thought about this too. A buddy of mine has a spot where he can get undersized bass to throw in there. But I wanted to figure out what to do to make this a self-sustaining pond after stocking it.
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Old 09-22-2017, 11:14 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yotethumper View Post
We have several ponds on our place. However, we have one small pond like the one you are describing, ours is only 1/3 of an acre and as far as we know it has never been stocked. I got bored one evening and grabbed some blood worms and headed out not expecting to catch much. I started catching tons of bluegill. I switched to a top water lure and started catching bass. I couldn't believe it. If you haven't fished it yet give it a shot, it might surprise you.
I'm doing exactly this next weekend. We'll see what turns up.
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Old 10-09-2017, 12:41 PM   #24
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Well, it turns out that this does support life after all. There are TONS of these little guys



And a few of these bigger fellas.


And upon closer inspection there is a lot more vegetation that I thought.

Now I need to decide whether fish will thrive if I stock some other fish in there....
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Old 10-09-2017, 12:42 PM   #25
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They are definitely hungry! We were catching the tiny ones on a size 8 hook with a 2" piece of worm on it.

Does anyone have experience with fish food/feeders? Can you rig up a deer feeder to throw food?
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Old 10-09-2017, 12:45 PM   #26
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Dear god it is A TANK.
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Old 10-09-2017, 12:46 PM   #27
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Dear god it is A TANK.
Yeah...my mistake has been well documented. Thanks for the reminder.
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Old 10-09-2017, 12:53 PM   #28
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I learned from a wildlife biologist that you don't have to have aquatic vegetation growing all around the pond in the first 3ft of water. We have a bass pond (around 2 acres) and found that we didn't have much aquatic weeds in the first three feet of water this summer and I was concerned that this was going to affect the smaller fish. After the biologist looked at it they said that as long as we have other structure throughout the pond like cedar trees, pvc structure, etc., which we do, then we don't need the aquatic vegetation. He also said that aquatic vegetation actually does more harm than good (I.e. Oxygen depletion, messy for fishing, etc.). Hope this helps. All of the structure that we added last year all have algae and other stuff growing on them and we see lots of baitfish all around them.
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Old 10-09-2017, 01:10 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bgleaton View Post
I learned from a wildlife biologist that you don't have to have aquatic vegetation growing all around the pond in the first 3ft of water. We have a bass pond (around 2 acres) and found that we didn't have much aquatic weeds in the first three feet of water this summer and I was concerned that this was going to affect the smaller fish. After the biologist looked at it they said that as long as we have other structure throughout the pond like cedar trees, pvc structure, etc., which we do, then we don't need the aquatic vegetation. He also said that aquatic vegetation actually does more harm than good (I.e. Oxygen depletion, messy for fishing, etc.). Hope this helps. All of the structure that we added last year all have algae and other stuff growing on them and we see lots of baitfish all around them.

I think a lot depends on what type of vegetation you have. Some vegetation is beneficial where some are negative. One thing that vegetation does is filter water.

Here is a pretty good read.

https://units.fisheries.org/tx/wp-co...anual_2005.pdf
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Old 10-09-2017, 01:13 PM   #30
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Dear god it is A TANK.
pond
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Old 10-09-2017, 01:56 PM   #31
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I'll take a ton of these
You have a gold mine


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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Old 10-09-2017, 07:32 PM   #32
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I believe those are green sunfish. They can live in a 4 wheeler rut, and some how find their way into small bodies of water very easily. Great forage for largemouth and people. Ha
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Old 10-09-2017, 08:17 PM   #33
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Quote:
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Dear god it is A TANK.
Exactly
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Old 10-09-2017, 08:23 PM   #34
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Quote:
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I believe those are green sunfish. They can live in a 4 wheeler rut, and some how find their way into small bodies of water very easily. Great forage for largemouth and people. Ha


We've got green sunfish in our pond/tank and they're fun to catch! Very aggressive with a mouth the size of golf ball.
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Old 10-09-2017, 09:03 PM   #35
steve morton
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Yellow Cat delicatessen!
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