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Thread: Where to buy fingerlings of Tilapia, perch or Catfish near Houston ?

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    merkurmaniac's Avatar
    What is this... FISH you speak of?
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    Where to buy fingerlings of Tilapia, perch or Catfish near Houston ?

    I am converting a backyard pond into an aquaponics setup, where I'll be growing Tilapia or Perch and using the fish waste to grow vegetables. I am wondering where I can buy these fish locally, or close to it. I'd be ok netting or catching some from lakes, if there are any nearby sources.

    As a consequence, I'll have free Anachris and a couple other ponds plants for anyone interested. They look hammered in the winter, but they always do. I live in Greatwood.


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    mnemenoi's Avatar
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    Nearly any small tributary or creek, even a drainage ditch that is overgrown should yield more then enough for your purpose. I'd suggest a long handled fine mesh fishing net, a cast net (if your a dexterous), or a seine net. Try and stick with waterways that appear overgrown with dense plant matter and they should be brimming with what you are seeking. As far as Tilapia go, I have only had success in the Buffalo Bayou drainage system, though others have had success in other areas. Just keep an eye out when you are driving and investigate areas near you.
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    decal's Avatar
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    In the Sugar Land/First Colony area you should be able to find a lot of "perch" (A.K.A. sunfish) in the bayous and even the neighborhood ponds depending on their age. If you're looking for something specific perch-wise I might be able to direct you to a particular location. You can see all the locals here: Texas cichlids are also locally abundant, I know a good spot for them. The easiest/quickest way to catch these guys is by rod and reel, casting near brush, plants or rocks. There's an art to minimizing mortality and damage to your fish that I am unfortunately not too good at. Small hooks with the barb cut off are a good start, but when you hook larger sunfish they're liable to swallow them. Bigger hooks will minimize swallowing but often leading to eye injuries. Netting may thus be preferable, but it's much lower yield.

    I have found tilapia in a few locations. If you didn't know they are primarily herbivores so it's harder to catch them on a rod. They also tend to scare easily and flee from near the bank to deeper waters.

    There's gonna be a lot of dead tilapia and Texas cichlids this weekend if it stays as cold as they're claiming for as long as they're claiming. The populations will bounce back in the spring and summer, but until then your best bet will be sunfish.

    FYI, the fishing regs in Texas prohibit the taking of fingerling sized channel cat, blue cat and flatheads. You're also suppose to kill wild caught tilapia the moment you catch them.

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    tcuduc's Avatar
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    contact Brett Rowley, he is in Danbury.

    if he doesn't have what you are looking for, he can tell you where to get it.

    tell him Duc sent you.
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