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Pond management (geared to grow big Bream)

Good morning and Happy Easter everyone! I recently was blessed to be buy a new home with a 1/2 acre pond. The pond was well cared for and in good shape. The pond has a few catfish, lots of bass, a few big hybrid bream, and I recently introduced 500 copper nose bluegill, and 50 red ears. What is the best food to ensure these little guys grow up to be trophy bream?

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Comment by Long Creek Arkie on May 12, 2016 at 4:07pm

I dug a new pond in fall of 2012. By the spring of 2013 it was full of water and measured 5/8 of a acre. 5/4/2013 I put 500 coppernose and 100 redears. The big fish of 2015 was a male coppernose at 2 years and 2 months was 10" long. So far this year I have caught a couple females 10.5". I live in Northwest Arkansas and didn't even know if they would live this far north. I bought one bag of small pellets and then went to regular food.

Comment by Tony Livingston on March 27, 2016 at 3:32pm

Hi Cobey. As far as feed goes, most of the major feed manufacturers will offer a premium feed, (usually a higher protein content that what's available off the shelf at the big box farm stores) Purina, Cargill, and Skretting are probably the big three, and all make great product. The trick is often to find a supplier that's available in your location, for a reasonable price and quick delivery.

I have fed Aquamax 500 from Purina, to my bluegills for years. That is changing this year however. there is a new feed on the market, specially formulated for bluegills, known as Optimal. I had some last year as part of a pre-rollout test program, and I was very impressed. I will be using it exclusively for my bluegills from now on.

Bear in mind that it's not as simple as feeding the fish and having them attain trophy status. There are a LOT of variables in the mix.

Comment by Cobey on March 27, 2016 at 11:16am
Thanks for the information! I am a rookie at this and appreciate any advise!
Comment by dick tabbert on March 27, 2016 at 8:43am

I use Purina AquaMax 500 and 600. I mix the 2 the only difference is the size of the pellet so I mix for the smaller fish and then the larger. I do have a feeder which I start up once a day in the spring and as the water warms it goes of in the morning and then the evening..There are different feeds so Ill be paying close attention to your posting here myself I think its worth a listen.

Comment by carl hendrix on March 27, 2016 at 8:22am

COLBEY;; THIS IS BEST ANSWERED BY TONY LIVINGSTON;; AND WALT FOREMAN !!  BOTH HAVE PONDS;; AND GROW BIG BLUE GILLS !

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