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Small trout only feed once a day during evening

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#1 az9

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Posted 24 May 2017 - 07:38 AM

Normally it's the norm for large trout in the 10th acre bore hole fed flow through pond, but with the smaller fish I presently have in the 5 inch + range I would like to feed them more than once per day.  However, feeding at first light gets virtually no takers, as does feeding the rest of the day until evening. In the evening I get a very good enthusiastic response, although I believe I am wasting a lot of feed as the trout are scattered throughout the pond. 


Any idea why these little stinkers only want to feed once per day? Perhaps there is enough natural feed in the pond until the come close to the surface in the evening? I am feeding floating feed now btw. Was feeding sinking feed before as that was all that was available in the appropriate size. 


I'm considering building a couple of floating PVC rings that will hold feed in place that is not eaten. Put it in the two areas of the 1/10th acre pond where most of the fish seem to come up. That way if they learn that is where the feed shows up they will feed there during other parts of the day if the feed is still there. Hopefully will cut down on the feed waste? 




BTW they do go out of their way to feed on midges in the evening if they are on the surface, and as far as I can tell the fish are not emaciated. 

#2 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
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Posted 25 May 2017 - 08:19 AM

Predator fear may be part of it. In my pond(mixed warm water species) I get a better feed response in the evenings, especially early in the season.  Could also have something to with the temperature differential. Small differences in water temperature certainly impact success when angling for trout. 


 The diet change and having to expose themselves to "death from above" would seem like the largest factor.

The member formerly known as Skipjack

#3 az9

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Posted 25 May 2017 - 08:58 AM

Thanks Matt although there are no other fish species, and the only other potential predators are bullfrogs. But I don't see any of the trout near the shore line where the bullfrogs reside. 


I have the pond perimeter staked off with several strands of 30 pound mono so a potential GBH can't get into the pond. If he or she shows up at any of the ponds I run him off with bottle rockets. Eventually they get the message. Years ago i got a permit from the feds to take them out but refuse to do that anymore. They are only doing what comes natural and they were here before I was. They need to eat too. 


Had a Kingfischer in the past but have not seen him this year. 


I use a diffuser to mix the water column and check with a D/O temp probe often and water temps are the same from top to bottom. 


Diet change is a possibility. 


Thank you for your response! 

#4 Matt DeLaVega

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Posted 25 May 2017 - 02:30 PM

Trout at least wild ones seem to be hard wired to fear anything overhead. In small streams I often fish on my knees to avoid being seen. Whether or not predators exist  is unknown to your fish, and I could imagine that the innate fear may take some time for them to unlearn. Theory anyway.


Stocking density may also have some bearing.


Probably work out with a bit of time. I had some issue recently getting juvenile tilapia switched from sinking to floating feed. I think you suggested moistening the feed so it would sink. It worked, but still took some time for them to regain their feeding response. Creatures of habit for sure.

The member formerly known as Skipjack

#5 az9

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Posted 25 May 2017 - 10:37 PM

Well make a liar out of me… today around noon I tried feeding and lo and behold the stinkers really went to town. It was overcast though so may have been a factor? 


I also fed them late in the evening. So I may be able to continue this. I'd like to spread the feed out to two feedings. 


There is also a possibility some feed is left over from the evening and they eat it at first light if I don't get out there right away. 


What's interesting is the parr marks area gone and some seem be a full six inches now. And they are silvery with guanine deposits. Can't tell any of the the three species apart. They all look very silvery like lacastrine trout in the summer. 

#6 az9

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Posted 30 May 2017 - 06:16 AM

I am no feeding three times a day. Go figure. 

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