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Fish in a barrel  RSS feed

 
pollinator
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Location: Nevada, Mo 64772
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There is a very old article about growing catfish in a 55 gallon barrel. I'm very sceptical that it is possible to grow more than a couple fish that way. Has anyone tried it?

I bought two blue water storage barrels at a yard sale. I'm Not sure what size they are, at least 40 gallons, I think, maybe 55. I thought I might use one for sort of a long term live well.  I have places I can catch fish. It'd be nice if I could keep some alive at least a week so I could eat them fresh instead of freezing them. It'd be even better if I could actually grow a few out over a couple months. Does anyone have suggestions on what equipment I'd need and how many pounds of fish I could keep? I'll probably try it, even if it's just an overnight thing. I don't like to fish late at night and then clean fish. Tired and sharp knives isn't a good combination.
 
pollinator
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I use a cattle trough tank as a give and take for minnows since its a long trip to buy them relative to my fishing hole. It works well as it is also a mosquito trap because they eat the larvae. They reproduce, they get large, and they need no inputs(food, aeration,  etc) except keeping the water full. I also scoop out a bucket of water for my garden. Several benefits of doing this.

I can see keeping catfish for a few days. I don't see raising them to get bigger. I suppose it can be done. I think a hormone is released that says hey, i'm too big for my surroundings and they dont grow. This is resolved through filtration. The question would be how elaborate of a system are you willing to create. I would think that it would be more cost effective to move up to a larger (500+ gallon) tank that would not need filtration over a 50 gallon tank that needs it. Then I would start very small as far as numbers.

A light above the tank at night might be enuff of a food source for them as it would attract bugs that land in the water
 
Ken W Wilson
pollinator
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I was thinking of an a aerator in the barrel but no filter. Maybe partial water changes.

I'm afraid to go too big with the tanks because my town has bee active code enforcement. I think I can get away with a barrel.  I've thought of trying a small stock tank.
 
pollinator
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Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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Bluegill will grow to  pan size in a small fish tank, but I don't know about Catfish.  I had bad luck raising Catfish (they got sick, died, and killed everyone else) but had good luck with Bluegill (until I tried to add Catfish to the system). 
 
Ken W Wilson
pollinator
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That’s good to know about the bluegill. I had thought catfish would be much hardier.
 
pioneer
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I keep goldfish (carp) in 55 gallon barrels in my garden as part of a system to eat garden waste and insect larvae and produce nutrient-rich plant-watering water and biosolids (sludge) that are nutrient-rich inputs to my soil-creation efforts.  They thrive but do not grow to meat scales at any reasonable speed. 

I would sure enjoy seeing that article about catfish in barrels if anybody has the link.   
 
Ken W Wilson
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https://www.stevequayle.com/prepare/Raising.Catfish.in.Barrel.pdf

I can't find any story about anyone trying it. It seems too good to be true.
 
Dan Boone
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That sounds like a very fiddly procedure with a lot of daily attention.  I'm into systems that are more self-maintaining, honestly.  But it's interesting!
 
Ken W Wilson
pollinator
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Yeah! I was thinking that the same sized barrel with a lot less fish might need a lot less attention.
 
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