Holden, Mo. – Farm ponds can be wonderful places to catch fish, but good pond management and design can make them more productive. The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) will offer a free pond management workshop 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 12, at the Trails Regional Public Library, 207 S. Main St. in Holden.
MDC experts will discuss all aspects of pond management such as fish stocking, managing fish populations, vegetation control and many common pond problems. This workshop will also be useful for anyone considering building a new pond.
Managing aquatic plants such as algae, moss or cattails is often a problem for pond owners. Too much vegetation can hinder fishing, said Steve Hoel, MDC private land conservationist. Correct watershed management to reduce excess nutrient inputs can help. Deepening pond edges and careful use of herbicides are also common ways that pond owners can control excessive aquatic plant growth.
For new ponds, some critical features in design and construction can provide better fishing. MDC staff can suggest good ratios of watershed size to pond area. A well-built dam with a clay core and proper spillway is important. For maximum fishing opportunities, underwater fish habitat such as brush piles, gravel spawning beds or large rock structures can be considered. Selecting the correct fish species and amount of fish for stocking is also important.
Participants are asked to register by May 10. For more information or to register, call 816-732-4545.
For more information about pond management in Missouri, visit https://mdc.mo.gov/your-property/improve-your-property/pond-improvements.