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More on Raising Fish

What does it costs to raise fish?

The price varies depending on the size of the fingerlings,and of course from year to year, and with different suppliers. 2 to 3″ are less than $2 each (about). I usually get 3-4″ for a bit more cost. If you don’t count the trip to get them, that’s all you need to put into them if you have a ‘mature’ pond that has lots of bugs and fresh water shrimp. This is the way I intended to do and organic. I wanted them to eat this:


What trout eat from a natural pond

 This is for sure what they eat. I got if from the  belly of the fish we ate today. Hubby got carried away and started them on purchased fish food because he was impatient because they were smaller than our normal batch. This fish food is very expensive. You can easily get rid of a whole $60 bag in a season with 150 2-3″ fingerlings. This is what the purchased food looks like:


What the purchased food looks like


Bag of fish food











We had to dig a dugout for a water source anyway. We decided to co-habitate with the fish.We have a million gallon dugout about 17′ at the deepest (they like it deep – it’s cooler and keeps the oxygen intact). I think we put in 150 the last time about 2 years ago. They might live 5-6 years. In some of the pictures you will see a windmill that we use for aeration. 

Although I don’t like to use the bagged food, it is good to feed them for a couple of weeks before they go dormant in the fall – usually about the end of September up here.

I put about a small square bale of barley straw on the pond’s edge just under the water level each year. This gives the fresh water shrimp a place to breed and multiply as well as a counter measure against the algae that likes to form around the pond. Depending on how much nutrient packed rain water run off a person gets during the summer and other factors, the algae may need more control. I normally put in an 5 gallon pail of an organic product into the pond mid-summer.This helps the deterioration process so that we don’t end up with black, sulphur-smelling water in the house during the winter after the plant material rots.

The best time to harvest trout is in the early spring or late fall when the water is cold. Because of their food sources and such, they taste less ‘murky’ at that time. Either that or you use more lemon, pepper and salt. ‘Lemon-pepper’ is good,but has preservatives in it.

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43 Responses to “More on Raising Fish”

  1. Wow…where / how did you learn all of this?! How does the water get in the dugout and stay in it? Amazing, simply amazing.

    • sherry says:

      I’ll do a post of that too. Thanks for the inspiration. I think I’ll have to blog forever to keep up with all the things going through my head!I still want to get to the Bear stories…

  2. Judy says:

    Shall we come fishing? Your place looks inviting….trails and all. How many acres? Steve and I want to get land, but nothing here has trees!

    • sherry says:

      I desperately wanted about 1/2 of a quarter of trees. I didn’t get nearly enough, so we planted 3000 plus. They haven’t become big enough to give me the seclusion I desire. We do live up against the’green’ zone though so it’s easy to hunt, and the the wild bears wander in occasionally.

    • I didn’t get an invite to come fishing either heheh

      • sherry says:

        No? I didn’t think you were serious or we’d tell a couple to stay in the bottom. There’s always a few shy ones that want to get bigger before they meet their doom.

  3. How close are your neighbors? I had envisioned you living pretty far out in the sticks. Wolves . Wilderness lady. :D

    • sherry says:

      I’ve been anywhere from 20 minutes from town to hours from town, depending on the time in my life. The neighbours are now within 1/2 a mile. We warn each other when bears come around so we can defend children, and when the elk around so we can attempt to keep them from starving our horses…It’s good to have friends and neighbours – we certainly need each other. I have to balance that with my urge to be a ‘hick’ or ‘bushed’ as my mom would say.

  4. Judy says:

    3000 trees, that is a lot.

  5. There is a lot to be said for community. If we could trust our neighbors to keep their poisonous chemicals to themselves and their drunken friends from driving the country roads or from shooting out livestock accidentally…that would be ever so awesome.
    Until then I will take 10,009 trees and a good phone connection.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I still think that you could raise your own worms and feed them to your trout.
    You are living my dream. Thanks for sharing.

    • sherry says:

      Maybe I could have a Robin farm. What a break-through idea.

    • Sherry is living a lot of peoples dreams! :) Easy for me to say though, its very glamorous for me because I am not the one killing my back lol

      • sherry says:

        You figured that out? I’ve had arthritis in my back for ions it seems (maybe since I was a teenager), but I like it so much that I’ve learned to ignore it.

        • sherry says:

          Come to think of it the arthritis and back problems probably came from running the skidder – dragging trees over stumps.

  7. Wendy says:

    Fish. I like fish. I can clean fish too, if you refresh me. But it sounds like you might have a too much company! Food is always as attractive to humans as it is for bears. About the bears, have you considered shooting one? Nice bear skin to tan…all those nights you have left without a stitch of anything to do. I hear bear meat makes great jerky, and I know, I’ve tried it. You can render the fat and rub it on something leathery, like a saddle. Do you have a saddle?

    • sherry says:

      I’ve shot my share of bears and Hubby has so many ‘notches on his gun’ I can’t count them all. I have skinned one. I hated the job. I’d rather skin a skunk. It feels like you are skinning a hairy person…yeeesh! Bear meat tastes good. It was hard to get past the bear sausage in my mind thiuogh because it reminded me of a big bear tird (another word for feces). Yes we have a saddle, and harnesses, etc.

  8. Wendy says:

    o, and the trees, that many? Thats so…spellbound. 3000. In one year, not? Maybe in the lifetime of your home? Where did you get them? What kind? An assortment? Hubby helped? How did you water them? How big? Who helped? Too many questions? (They say the only dumb question is the one not asked…haha?) o, and Anna-Marie’s question, how does the water get in the dug out and stay in it? Rain water? Ground water? Must be deep.

    • sherry says:

      I’m planning a blog on the dugout. It’s so hard to be patient with all the things I want to say. Time is too short.
      Trees: yes I did them all in one year. I hired a couple to help me that didn’t have much income at the time. Charles and I shared the watering job. It was huge. Maybe I should do a blog on that…

  9. Yup. Sherry has dropped a bear by sneaking around the corner of her cabin and plugging it right between the eyes. Feel sorry for the bear for sure, but would be worse if they had eaten one of the kiddies!
    Um. Who waters 3000 trees. LOL wowwww

    • sherry says:

      Don’t mention how scared I was. I’d just learned how to use a rifle. Hubby came home to find it still laying beside the cabin, and became convinced he’d better not try to get into the house in the dark.

  10. Anonymous says:

    3000 trees! That’s even a lot to me. And I love everything in volume.

    • sherry says:

      I never got tired of it, just thinking of the beautiful possibilities…until the 2nd year after doing all the replacements. Then I hated it.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Why am I coming up as “anonymous”?

  12. Judy says:

    I remember 13.5 years ago when we put around 100 caliber trees on our acreage and at the time I was nursing Reese. Steve was practically living at our lawn care compound and I had to water all the trees hoses hooked end to end. Meanwhile I had to repair the tree wells and even dig fresh ones in some, as the water ever so slowly filled the major cracks. Reese came with and was parked under large trees to await nursing and stay cool in the shade. He loves trees!

  13. Judy says:

    Oh no, no regrets! Just lots of exhaustion tears at the time!

  14. Anonymous says:

    How do I get my name to come up as ‘Naomi’ or something clever like that. I really don’t want to be anonymous. :S

  15. Anonymous says:

    I believe I have come up as Naomi a few times.

    • sherry says:

      Are you on the same computer (re:settings), or coming in the same way? I don’t know because I’ve never been on your side of this puzzle.

  16. wendy says:

    Do you can your fish? If so, how? Would you pressure cook them? Do you have a special recipe? Thanks!

    • sherry says:

      I don’t can them. I freeze the rainbow. But I have canned jackfish in the past and would love to find enough to do it again. I have a recipe that makes them like salmon! What kind of fish are you thinking?

  17. wendy says:

    Anonoymous is cute.

  18. wendy says:

    Will you be opening a blog on the tree planting you did? I had some questions. Its a busy time of year, so I can wait!


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