There are two seasons for fish stocking: spring and fall. Back in the spring we introduced the first batch of fish into the pond at Nature Boardwalk, consisting of bluegill, pumpkinseed and fathead minnows. Now it’s time to introduce the second batch, which includes largemouth bass, the pond’s top predator.
Largemouth bass in a net before going into the pond. You can also see one pumpkinseed in this picture. It's the large fish that looks more round in shape and seems to be headed toward the bottom of the net.
Tuesday the pond was stalked with about 400 largemouth bass, all about 3 inches long. Around 100 bluegill and pumpkinseed were added to the pond as well as an additional 100 pounds of fathead minnows.
Fathead minnows before their introduction.
The largemouth bass are easy to distinguish from the bluegill and the pumpkinseed, even when they’re all the same size. The bass have long, torpedo-shaped bodies compared to the bluegill and pumpkinseed, which look round in profile and are laterally compressed. The young largemouth bass also have distinctive coloration. They have speckles on their backs, light undersides and a dark line of speckles down their sides.
The fish were introduced into the pond via a tube from their holding tanks. This minimizes handling time and stress on the fish. Within 15 minutes, the pond had hundreds of new occupants.