Raising minnows for bait
Fishing in your pond is a great way to relax, and a wonderful activity to share with the entire family. To avoid having to make a trip to the bait shop every time you want to cast a line, however, you can raise your own minnows. Since they're at the bottom of the food chain, you'll need a smaller pond free of large fish. Tory Mason, fisheries management biologist from the Missouri Department of Conversation, says to stock your bait pond with minnows such as fatheads or shiners, which you can purchase from a bait dealer or game farm. Stock 300 or so adults per surface acre of water in the spring, and by the end of the year, they should number around 10,000. Then, when you're ready to go fishing, grab the seine or a minnow trap, and get ready to reel in the lunkers!
The Scoop on Minnows: Learn about the species from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Baitfish Farming: The University of Kentucky shares useful tips for understanding the bait market, choosing fish, and more.
Baitfish Aquaculture: An overview from the University of Maryland.
Rosy red and fathead minnows: Find everything you ever wanted to know -- and then some -- about these minnows, including care, breeding and photos.
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