Managing ponds and lakes for aquaculture and fisheries in Missouri : Fish selection and stocking for sport fishing
Sport fishing is a popular recreational activity among Missouri pond owners (Figure 1). Developing a farm pond for fishing requires several important decisions, including where to get fish; what species to stock; how many, what size and when to stock. Ponds stocked with incorrect combinations of fish can quickly develop unbalanced populations that will become a problem. Small farm ponds and lakes are not natural environments, so they must be carefully managed. Successful pond management involves a combination of practices that promote a healthy and productive pond ecosystem: Ensuring during construction that a pond has enough watershed acreage to maintain water levels ; Monitoring water quality, and adjusting as necessary ; Ensuring food is available for fish ; Controlling harvesting to maintain a balance of predator and prey populations ; Managing aquatic vegetation, and controlling weeds ; Preventing situations that may cause fish kills.
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