How Can I Increase Fish Production?

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How can you increase fish production in your private pond or lake? The answer is surprisingly simple, the methods are simple, but the process is surprisingly complex. It starts with the basic life cycle, which involves how everything in a body of water interacts with everything else.

Fish population and fish size

The number and size of fish populations is similar to the number and size of almost all populations in one way. The availability of food. If enough food is present, the average size per fish, and the population will both rise.

How fish get their food

So, aside from feeding the fish in your pond or lake with a fish feeder, or by hand, how do fish get the food they need to survive and thrive? The answer is in the food chain. Larger fish eat smaller fish, and some insects that cross their path. Smaller fish eat bugs. The bugs eat smaller bugs. The smaller bugs eat algae in the form of phytoplankton.

Phytoplankton production

The answer is pretty simple, for fish to thrive, they need phytoplankton to start the food chain. The obvious next question is: How do I get phytoplankton to grow in my pond or lake?

Well, the phytoplankton already exists in your reservoir. All you need to do, is encourage it to grow by feeding it. The way you feed the phytoplankton is with fertilizer. The fertilizer should be high phospherous, or micronutrients in a delivery system like nano silicates. This will kick start phytoplankton production. I encourage you to do a pH test before you start this type of program, and also to do a secchi test to determine how much phytoplankton is aready there.

See these articles for more detailed information and how to:

Lake And Pond Food Chain

Lake Management Lake Depth Secchi Disk

Pond and Lake maintenance using Diatom Algae

Lake Fertilization

The process works pretty rapidly, and continues as long as the proper fertility exists. This is something that will need to be repeated throughout the summer, but the payoff can be amazing.

Lake And Pond Food Chain | Lake Advice

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The elements in the lake and pond food chain

What makes up the lake and pond food chain ecosystem? It can seem deceptively simple, and at the same time, it is deceptively complicated, but for our purposes in lake management, there is a reasonably simple middle ground that ends in good pond and lake management, and good fishing. There are several elements in the food web for ponds and lakes, and they begin with a simple, single cell plant that exists just about everywhere.

A lake with visible plankton promoting a good lake and pond food chain.


In the life chain, that is, the lake and pond food chain, the beginning is phytoplankton. We could take this back a little further, and say that the pond food chain begins with the presence of phytoplankton, which is seemingly present everywhere, and awaiting water, fertility, and sunlight to become active. Once all the elements are present in sufficient quantities, the process will begin and continue as long as the elements remain in sufficient quantities to produce algae bloom.


Microinvertebrates, the mini sized creatures that exist in large numbers in pond and lake water, feed on phytoplankton. The more phytoplankton, the more of these little creatures.


These are the little bugs (under .5 millimeters) that exist in and around ponds and lakes and feed on the microinvertebrates. Once again, the more of the microinvertebrates they have to eat, the higher the numbers.

Small fish

Small fish exist in ponds, both small fingerlings of the larger species, and smaller species. These small fish eat the bugs that exist in the water, and once again, the more bugs exist, the more these small fish increase in number.

Larger fish

Now we are getting down to the brass tacks. Small fish provide food for larger fish, and the more small fish are available, the larger the large fish will grow.


Finally, if the food chain achieved good results, starting with the phytoplankton, and you are a reasonably good angler, you will have food for your own table!
See also: How to increase fish production!