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 Post subject: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 8th, '10, 13:20 
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Curious of anyone playing around with Bluegill or any of the hybrid sunfishes and what they think compared to talapia.


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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 8th, '10, 16:42 
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I havent yet grown bluegill in AP but I can say that bluegill will not compare growth rate-wise. It seems they will stay small rather than grow out quickly like tilapia. The wider temperature range would be the only reason I would consider them over other fish you could use IMO.

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 8th, '10, 19:39 
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Dave D. is correct. Bluegill take two years to get to breeding size. Even then I have not had any breed in my tanks. While they survive colder temps they stop feeding and growing below about 42 deg. F. They do not seem to care much for catfish food but love goldfish flakes. They have no problem with 80 deg F. water temp. But for my money I wont buy any more. Goldfish can be plate size in three years and will breed in tanks and take my temps, and are tougher. Goldfish cost $0.25 each with no delivery fee vs. bluegill at over $1.00 and $175 delivery. The veggies do not care which I raise.
I can not compare to talapia, which I could only keep in summer..


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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 8th, '10, 22:21 
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with a good feed, i think bg can be grown out to a pound in a year, i got a "mix" of bg sizes, from 1.5" up to maybe 4" this past spring, a couple are plate size, and feeding better now that the water is pretty consistently at 70... water got way to warm this summer with only 110 gallon tank.. i had 2 that were carrying eggs, down to one now, they will breed in their first year with decent conditions
check out bigbluegill.com, i came across the "condello" strain on another forum that lead me there
there's so much info out there on bg, i was pretty suprised.. but some newer studies are showing the non hybrid can perform just as well/better than hybrids -ohio state's done some good research

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 00:54 
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My first batch of fish was a mix between tilapia and blue gill. The tilapia grew much faster then the bg - at least double the growth. In fact some of the bg looked like they hardly put on any weight before they were killed by chloramines. There is a picture of the dead ones in my "test system" thread somewhere. The second batch of fish were catfish and tilapia. I'm pretty sure the catfish growth was just as good as tilapia (if not better) and can be kept year round easier then tilapia. So I think I have come to the same conclussion as TCLynx...I will probably end up doing catfish in the long term. Especially if I can get them to breed.

Blue Gill are a fantasic fish for eating and very hardy. But unless conditions are ideal, I think you will see slower growth then some other fish.

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 03:05 
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Has anyone considered using bluegill as a food fish for carnivorous fish? From what I understand once they breed they breed like made to the point of killing themselves off in smaller ponds.


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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 03:23 
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As regard raising bluegills as food for other fish, you'd be better off with fathead minnows or goldfish. They are easier to breed and grow faster. Also, the shape of the bluegill is itself a defense mechanism.


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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 07:38 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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in pond culture (farm ponds) blue gills are stocked as food for not only people but for the bass as well. Problem is people tend to catch too many of the bass and not enough of the blue gill and wind up messing up the balance in the pond and the blue gill over populate and become stunted.

I would probably recommend fathead minnows as feed fish too though I've not managed to get any to raise yet myself, I do plan to try it sometime soon.

As to the price of blue gill, it will all depend on where you are. I can get blue gill fingerlings for probably 30 cents each just for driving down to the fish farm when they have them available but if you have to order them and have them shipped then the gold fish would be cheaper (I don't want to eat goldfish though.)

Yes, bluegill are definitely a slower grow out than tilapia but you don't have to worry about heating the water so much. If you want similar growth rates to tilapia, I'd say go for channel catfish they handle the heat as well as tilapia will and will grow faster if the water spends any time below 70 F. If you prefer finfish (as in don't like catfish) then blue gill are definitely a good eating fish and being native to most of the USA I think they are a good choice anywhere that heating the water for tilapia would be an issue or anywhere that tilapia are not allowed.

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 10:02 
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Are you guys in the USA allow to keep Gambusia ?

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 10:12 
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chillidude wrote:
Are you guys in the USA allow to keep Gambusia ?


Yes - I have seen them at the local aquarium shop - at least in Texas.

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 11:14 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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I think they release them to control mosquitoes around here, not sure though.

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 11:15 
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DéjàVoodoo wrote:
chillidude wrote:
Are you guys in the USA allow to keep Gambusia ?


Yes - I have seen them at the local aquarium shop - at least in Texas.

TCLynx wrote:
I think they release them to control mosquitoes around here, not sure though.

Why don't you use those as feeder fish ? They're livebearers, and breed like rabbits !

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 11:16 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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how big do they get?

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 9th, '10, 11:19 
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Pretty much on a par with guppies - the males are the same size as male guppies and the females are the same size as female guppies (no surprise seeing they're in the same family).

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 Post subject: Re: Bluegill
PostPosted: Dec 10th, '10, 01:02 
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I didn't even think about their "mohawk" top fins... I do remember getting jabbed with them when I was younger trying to get them off the hook.

I am really considering doing BG for a couple of reasons. They will eat a wide range of foods. They will survive my temperature swings here in Central Texas. My water has been as high as 80 and as low as 55 (granted its a very small amount right now). They are fearless of humans (reduced stress?) and school in 20-30. They breed like crazy and most important they taste so damn good .

I remember fishing on multiple lakes in the spring and seeing a large area of about 2-3 ft deep just covered with spawning bluegill protecting their nests. Most of the lakes we fished on in the Midwest were converted floodplains and most were only about 2-3 ft deep with with spots as high as 5ft and one deep area over 20 ft. We duck hunted on these same lakes in the fall. It became a tradition to go out on memorial day and come home with an unbelievable amount of bluegill. I remember not being able to carry some of the fish baskets when I was younger. It was pretty much throw something in the water with a hook, pull a fish out.

and then there are pictures like this!
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