One of life's greatest mysteries is how bass seem to populate even the most remote woodland ponds, seemingly out of reach for DNR stocking and without inlets. Fish, not just bass, have been found in very remote and cut off ponds in the most unluckiest of the places. An example would be the brown trout in the mountain lakes of Ireland. How to fish end up in these ponds?
While some of us may believe that Lew's secretly stocks these ponds while we are all asleep, it seems that a very unlikely candidate, migratory geese, actually plays a role in transporting aquatic organisms across waterways.
Note: Keep in mind that the science on fish dispersal across isolated waterways is not complete, and more research needs to be done.
Above: Thank your local honkers for their valuable services the next time you go fishing.
Canada geese and ducks often sift through masses of aquatic plants and walk on fish spawning beds in their search for food. Many of them often accidentally ingest pond critters and fish eggs when they feed on duckweed. Small animals and eggs sometimes get stuck to their feathers in mud. A study done in Hungary involved feeding carp eggs to geese. The eggs were extracted after they were excreted and although few in number, were found to have healthy embargoes that grew to become fertile adults. Pond snails were also found to serve being eaten and excreted by waterfowl. As geese migrate, they land on different ponds, spreading critters from pond to pond. While no conclusive studies are yet done on bass, we can assume that ducks and geese at least play some role in spreading aquatic organisms from different waterways.
Above: As they look for food, ducks often ingest many other pond organisms.
Another method of transmission involves storms and floods. Asian carp, for example, used flooding to escape their holding ponds into the Mississippi. Fish can survive a surprisingly long time out of water if their skin is moist, wriggling through wet grass and into culverts and ditches. This method of transmission is especially common down South, where the weather is often humid and rainstorms are more common.
Hi. I am Ian, an extremely avid bass fisherman living in Howard County, MD. I like to bank fish and fish at local ponds and small creeks. I will explore budget friendly options for people to use in this blog. I hope I can teach you something.