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John's stocked pond discussion...

John Schneider

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As I mentioned in the welcome section, I do have a stocked pond on our property. Some people might be interested in doing the same sort of thing so I thought I would start a discussion on how we went about it and some ongoing issues.


We bought our property in 2000 and before we dug the foundation for the house, we dug a trout pond. Our property is west of the city between Devon and Spruce Grove and it is comprised of rolling pine hills and willow swamp areas. In one of the willow swamp areas, we bulldozed a fairly large portion of the willows and staked out the outline of the 'fishin hole'. Once the brush was piled (over a fairly large area in order to avoid too large of a hill), we began the process of digging. All this work was performed in the spring before the ground was too thawed. The big track hoe made short work of the foot and a half of frost and was in the steaming ground before too long. Where we were digging, the soil if comprised of about three feet of peat moss and then 80 feet of sandy clay. This is both good and bad as I will get to in a minute. We piled the peat off to the side and then began excavating in earnest. All of the sand was excavated and then spread by the dozer over the cleared area. After that, the peat was spread over the sand. The water quickly began to fill the pond especially when the track how crawled into the hole and began going a boom length deeper again. Within a week of the pond being done, it was at least half full. It took two full days of digging to get the depth and size that I wanted. Four days would have been better to get it to the size that I originally envisoned, but money and time constraints were wearing thin on my wife!! bless her heart. We stocked the pond with the first fish the following spring. There was a very minimal amount of happy salad growth and not many bugs. Since then, the pond has slowly filled itself in because of the sandy bottom. The sand allows so much water to enter the cavity that it actually sluffs to the bottom and reaches an equilibrium of depth. To go bigger in surface area will definitely allow me to get deeper. I am guessing that it is about 10 feet at its deepest right now. At the time of digging, it was about 25. We have definite plans to expand the pond in the near future. It would be nice to set it up with a channel other structure to simulate 'real fishing situations'.


I stock the pond mainly with brook trout. They don't grow as fast as bows, but they are pretty to look at and taste just as good. The banks of the pond are open on one side and pretty tight to the taller trees and bush on the other...perfect for kids to learn to cast. Don't let me kid you though (no pun intended), I really enjoy walking down the trail to cast dry flies to some hungry brookies 100 yards from my front door!


Perhaps one day, the club could hold a kids flycasting seminar etc.


John Schneider

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