On September28th, Department of Game and Inland Fisheries biologist, Chad Boyce, and his partner Jared, collected representative fish samples from our pond. This consisted of electro-fishing (shocking), collecting the fish and then counting, weighing and measuring each species. This information will be used to formulate recommendations to assist our chapter in managing the fish populations in our pond. This sampling method was performed previously in 2007.
The DGIF representatives made two passes around the pond covering about 95% of the total pond area. On the first pass, Nathaniel Carpenter was able to ride along in the boat while they sampled mainly along the shoreline. They spent approximately 45 minutes on their first pass and then came into the dock to identify, measure, weigh and record every fish they had retrieved. They recorded data for over 75 fish which were identified as Largemouth Bass, Shell Crackers and Bluegill. Chad stated that the pond appeared to contain too many Bass (predator fish) in relation to numbers of Bluegill and Shell Crackers (forage fish). Most of the Bass on this pass where very small and would not be able to eat the forage fish. Approximately 70% of the Bass were around 2-3 inches with a few being in the 6-12 inch range. On the second pass Rob Carpenter was able to ride along and they spent another 45 minutes focusing a little deeper in the pond. They collected the same ratio of predators to forage fish, but this time they collected a 6.5 pound Bass and several 13-14 inch Bass as well as Shell Crackers and Bluegill. It was a very interesting morning and Chad gave us some ideas on how to manage the fish in our pond. Overall they recorded over 100 Bass and 50 Shell Crackers and Bluegill. No other fish species were collected during the survey.