Guests - If You want access to member only forums on HSO. You will gain access only when you Sign-in or Sign-Up on HotSpotOutdoors.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Shorelunch

Minnows - keeping alive experiment

16 posts in this topic

I have a "normal" 10 quart minnow bucket. I have a battery operated Frabill portable aerator that's kept spot tail shiners alive for many days. I generally change water each day (well water).

I got tired of burning through batteries at home so I picked up a plug-in 5-15 gallon aerator. I put the shiners in the bucket, plugged in the aerator and they were all dead over night. The water was very bubbly (like a shook up pop bottle).

My guess is that there was too much oxygen in the water since the plug-in aerator is for 5-15 gallons and the Frabill is for up to 6 gallons? Any thoughts?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gas bubble disease?

Well water coming up from a deep well already has more gases dissolved in it than surface water and maybe the aerator pushed it over the edge.

I don't think the aerator can make the water super saturated with gases alone. I think it is a combination of the well water with the aerator.

Maybe let the well water degas by letting it sit out for a day or so before dumping it in the tank. You could also get a splitter for the aerator tubing at a pet store and just let half the air go to the minnow tank.

Good luck.

EDIT: I just reread your original post and I guess I read it wrong the first time... I think that aerator is way to much for a 10 quart bucket. Buy a splitter or little valve you can use to bleed off some of the output from aerator. This should fix your problems.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Use Distilled water. No minerals in it. That should help

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought distilled water was not a good idea. Think about fish in their natural environments. If your well water is too hard you could dilute it with distilled water.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree your air output may be a little much. I used the same setup, only in a 10 gallon cooler and kept minnows alive for a long time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Put a couple asprin in your minnow bucket with well water, it works for me. I heard ot from a friend, not sure why it works, but it does.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been using a Frabil Blue/white puck style that tosses the very fine bubbles. I put it in a 5 gallon bucket or cooler of Lake Superior water and as long as I keep the water cool with frozen water in pop bottles I can keep minnows for weeks.

Mine plugs into the wall or can clip onto a battery. I have used it in my partner boat when his livewell died in a tourney and it worked great.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is it possible to over-oxygenate water? My fish tank pump says it's for 6 gallons or more, when I was using it for about3 gallons.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

buy the 2.99 cheapo pump from wally world for aquariums, thats what ive been using in a 5 gallon pail.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

buy the 2.99 cheapo pump from wally world for aquariums, thats what ive been using in a 5 gallon pail.

That's about what I have - I just think it over-oxygenate the 2-3 gallons I used it for.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I use a 30 gallon garbage can and run my sump pump in it the minnows last forever in it

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Use a larger hose. If you have a smaller hose it creates more bubbles, a larger one will have the same amount of air just less bubbles.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You are not going to over-oxygenate your water with an air pump!

I think the only time this would come into play is if you are using pure oxygen in cooler water. Regular air being pumped through the water in large bubbles will not put too much oxygen into the water.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Use a larger hose. If you have a smaller hose it creates more bubbles, a larger one will have the same amount of air just less bubbles.

The smaller the air bubbles, the more chance the oxygen in the air will be transfered to the water.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Quote:
The water was very bubbly (like a shook up pop bottle).

My guess is that there was too much oxygen in the water since the plug-in aerator is for 5-15 gallons and the Frabill is for up to 6 gallons

Hence the reason for the larger hose. If it is cranking out the bubbles for 15 gallons in a 5 gal bucket, then a larger hose might alleviate the foaming issue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've found with shiners, temperature changes and iron in the water seem to affect them the most. If I have the water sitting around warming up in a bucket and I add fresh well water that is fairly cold, they shock and die within hours.

I have a feeling the iron in my well water has some effect. Fatheads, shiners, etc...they just don't like my well water.

If I refridgerate minnows in a bucket in lake water I get MUCH better results.

BTW- I run an aquarium air pump with a stone bubbler on the end of the hose. 6 gallon bucket about half full. I plug it in and run it 24-7. I've never felt it's an oxygen issue, it's my well water, IMO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0



  • Posts

    • I am giving it a last hurrah tomorrow. Sorry I haven't been able to check in here much. I have hardly been able to get out this year between work, a baby at home, and a recent trip out of the country for a relative's wedding.    Last time I was out I had a real nice Tom within 20 yards after a very long standoff. I think I screwed it up by rushing myself a bit. He stood around 50 yards out literally strutting back and forth like someone had drawn a line in the mud that he wouldnt cross. He must not have wanted to fight with the strutter decoy we had out. He did that for 45 minutes to an hour and finally came our way after a hen led him towards us.    They came past us but were outside the decoys and angling slightly away from us. Then the tom turned and started angling straight at the strutter decoy. That meant he was basically quartering to me and when he was 15-17 yards or so out I drew because in the back of my mind i was thinking if he kept moving that way and past the decoy he would quickly be in a spot I would have had no shot.   In hindsight I think he had realized (once he got close enough) that he would have been able to whoop up on the decoy and he was coming in to do just that. I probably should have waited to see, but I didn't and right as I hit the backwall of my draw his head popped up on alert and he turned around and walked straight away knowing something wasn't quite right. I could have easily shot at him at 20 yards but he was facing away and I just didn't feel comfortable. I am confident I would have hit my mark but I didn't like shooting at something walking straight away when I am not experienced with bow hunting turkeys.   I know some people will say that I should have shot, but I have been bow hunting for awhile and never wounded anything because of a poor shot or poor shot selection, so I didn't want that to be a first. Hopefully I get a shot at redemption tomorrow!
    • Way to go team!! I sure took the avg score down with my jake
    • nice story, fishing has a way of easing the pains we have. even when we hurt like crazy when done for the day we are looking forward to the next outing.
    • way to go, guys yep, the toms not about to give up even though its close to closing time have seen several strutters the past couple weeks and heard gobbles yesterday while fishing
    • great job. makes it 5 for 5 for team 5 congrats on a nice tom, 57 and that willl give our team score a boost
    • One More Cast      Photo by:  Roger Abraham   If any of you out there are regular readers of my tales, you have followed my recent struggles with back and knees.  I can’t put a name to this drive I have to be on the stream as of late.  It borders on obsession. I guess in my mind if I am healthy enough to fish the world is right with me and I am not getting old and feeble.      Today I was a witness to that I am not the only one.  Lots of anglers and hunters live to go out into the outdoors. .  It is what drives them.  It makes them feel alive.  It is their passion.  I told my fishing buddy Abe today my thoughts.  I told him how I was feeling a little old.  I guess my 60th birthday coming up next month makes me feel mortal.  Abe laughed and said I was a young buck compared to him.  Abe turns 76 this year.     Abe told me tales about catching big trout in tiny streams in Wisconsin and out west.  The twinkle in his eye when he reminisced I had seen before in many trout anglers.      We fished a stretch for 2 hours.  I sat down and rested often.  Abe kept on fishing. He got hung up in a box elder branch and lost a lure.  Abe told me box elders trees were his nemesis when he fished.   He asked me which tree was my kryptonite.  I told him, "ones with branches."  We both had a chuckle and continued fishing.   I thought to myself this guy is really driven.  I hope I am like him at 76.     We got to the vehicle and Abe wanted to continue fishing.  Abe’s waders sprang a leak earlier and he fell in the water a couple times.  He was quite wet.  He wanted to change in to dry clothes before we continue.  Abe peeled off his wet shirt and there were two things stuck to his chest.  He could tell by my questioning look he needed to tell me what was up.     Abe told me he had been having heart problems lately and he was supposed to be wearing a heart monitor.  He left it in the car because he was afraid of getting the electronics wet.  Here I have been whining about being old and the guy I was fishing with left his heart monitor in his vehicle.      Abe reassured me that he was in no danger and he could continue fishing.  I started brainstorming on a place to fish where it was not so hard walking.  Now that I knew he was not as healthy as he looked I wanted an easy place to fish.  I knew the place and it was upstream 5 miles.     We arrived at the well manicured field.  It looked like a golf green.  I picked the area because the farmer kept sheep and goats on the land and the weeds and brush were gone because of the goats.  We walked and fished.     Abe told tales of the old days and of fish lost and landed.  I walked a little forward to fish and looked back to check up on Abe.  What I saw when I looked back scared me and I immediately asked Abe if he was ok.  Abe was laying flat on the ground face down.  I thought the worst and he could tell by my face.  He told me to calm down.  His back was acting up and he needed to straight it out and that was the best way to do it.   We fished a little bit more and he took a photo of me.  He liked the lighting. He told me it captured the essence of trout fishing.  He did not have a camera.  I let him use mine.  He was not camera savvy and needed an impromptu lesson on how to use it.   We drove to his car and we talked about our love of the outdoors. We shook hands and headed our separate ways and promised to fish again soon.  As I drove home I smiled and thought about how I am going to be when I am 76.  I hope I am like Abe and my eyes still twinkle when I talk of chasing trout and I am still driven to make one more cast.
    • The past week has had me having multiple close calls and missing a brute at 45 yards.  Tonight I talked my dad to give it another try and there were birds in the field when we got there.  Birds ended up leaving as we tried to sneak in.  A short 20 minutes later they were back and we watched and worked the big group of toms and hens for more than 2 hours before we got one to commit.  Dad shot him with his 20 gauge at 48 yards,(this thing shoots an awesome pattern).  The 3 year old was down and only flopped a few times.   Nice 1+ inch spurs, 10" beard and heavy.  A good evening for sure!
    • Sorry to disappoint guys, but this tom was not my first bird of the season. Apparently that's part of the rules. The score won't count towards the team. I don't have any measurements for the jake I shot so we will have a zero from me.    At least my freezer is full. 
    • Way to  go 1957 !! Congrats!!
  • Our Sponsors