NANFA-- stone rollers spawning

R. W. Wolff (
Wed, 8 May 2002 11:58:17 -0500

I believe some stonerollers in my gar pond ( river) are spawning, or
preparing to do so.

For the past couple weeks the largest ( only 4 inches at the most)
stoneroller has an area of gravel cleared off on a point in my pond. There
is a fair amount of current here since this point narrows with a sand bar
from the other side of the pond. He doesnt look like the big ones I have
caught, but has a good crown of horns, the barbels seem larger or more
noticable and his paired fins are slightly enlarged with some orangish
color. At night the horned male can be seen sitting on this , what looks
mostly like a sunfish nest. All the pebbles are clean and so is the the
rock along side of it. There is very little gravel to work with in this
area of the pond, so maybe he is just making due, since I thought they made
a pile of pebbles-but that could be chubs that do that. This little nest
about 6 inches diameter, and in two inches of water, with nearly no water
one side and a 18 inch deep drop off on the other side.

Last night I seen a slightly smaller probably female sitting at the
perimeter of the nest. It seemed like something may have been going on, but
the light makes them freeze.

I never thought this fish would be a good pond fish, but I had one show up
on accident shortly after I built the pond ( going on its fourth year),
probably with some other minnows I was using as feeders. It has been alive
ever since so last fall I brought home nearly a dozen and put in. They are
active and attack pelleted foods at the surface and are not scared of large
sunfish or other predators. These along with spotfin and red shiners seem
to be some of the best pond cyprinids for me so far.
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