Stocking A New Pond

Getting Started

What Size Is My Pond?

Fish are stocked based on the amount of surface acres of the pond and the county in Missouri your pond is located in. 

For now let's just figure out how many surface acres you are wanting to get stocked.

What Size Fish Should I Stock?

The size of fish you choose to initially stock your pond depends mainly on when you want to start fishing your pond, and your stocking budget. Smaller fish are less expensive, but require more time to grow.

Larger fish provide a quick start to fishing without having to wait. 

It all boils down to what your goals are for your pond!

Pond Capacities

Well managed ponds that are not fed or aerated can support about 400 pounds of adult fish per surface acre. By adding aeration and feeding a pond can support up to 900 pounds per surface acre.


Whether you are feeding daily or weekly any supplementary feeding is beneficial to fish populations. Increased feeding equates to increased growth.

We recommend ponds without aeration feed at most 15 pounds per day. Ponds with aeration can feed 30 pounds per day.

Though fish will feed mid-winter on warm days, feeding is recommended March-December when water temperature are above 50 degrees.


Aerators and fountains are an excellent addition to any pond for various reasons. They keep your pond oxygenated during the heat of the summer, prevent freezing in the winter, increase feeding and stocking rates, and keeps the pond water mixed preventing fish kills in spring and fall.


Habitat is important for the health of the pond. Providing cover like stumps, cedar trees, pallets, and shallow grasses allow small fish to avoid being eaten and gives adults a place to spawn.

Monitoring Populations

As your pond begins to grow it is important to record or take note of the changes that occur. Ponds can become unbalanced due to harvesting and overstocking. Unbalanced ponds will typically provide bad fishing experiences and the balance will need to be restored. 


Harvesting is an important task that will need to begin after about two growing seasons. Bass and bluegill populations have to remain balanced with one another otherwise they can prevent the growth of one another. Every pond is unique, but on average it is recommended to harvest 20 smaller (<10")bass per acre per year, and 75-100 smaller (4-5") bluegill per acre per year.

Stocking Rates

Now that you know your pond size and how you plan to manage it, we can determine the recommended stocking rate for your lake or pond.

Stocking rates in Missouri are based on soil fertility and is represented by a 100%, 75%, and 50% stocking rate. 

Stocking Rates Are Per One Surface Acre

Click the link below to find your stocking rate and compare it to the tables below . 

MDC Suggested Stocking Rates (jpg)


Pond Personalization

Traditional Plan

Missouri pond stocking

Species                        100%        75%      50%   

  • Largemouth Bass     100          75       50
  • Bluegill                   500         375      250
  • Channel Catfish       100          75       50
  • Minnows                 5lbs.       5lbs.     5lbs.
  • Grass Carp             5              5         5

Variety Pond

Missouri pond stocking

Species                        100%        75%      50%   

  • Largemouth Bass     100          75       50
  • Bluegill                   350         250      150
  • Hybrid Bluegill         100          90       75
  • Redear                    50           35        25
  • Channel Catfish       100          75        50
  • Minnows                 5lbs.      5lbs.      5lbs.
  • Grass Carp               5             5         5

Catfish Pond

Missouri pond stocking

Feeding Rate                   Catfish       Minnows

  • No Feed                       150             5lbs.
  • Occasionally                 300            5lbs.
  • Every Other Day           400            5lbs.
  • Daily                            500            5lbs. 

Crappie Pond

Missouri pond stocking

Species                        100%        75%      50%   

  • Largemouth Bass    50            35         25
  • Bluegill                  500         375       250
  • Black Crappie        50            35         25
  • Minnows               10lbs.       10lbs.   10lbs.
  • Grass Carp             5              5           5

Want To Customize?

We can walk you through your own stocking plan.

Larger Fish Pond

Missouri pond stocking

Species                        100%        75%      50%   

  • Largemouth Bass     100          75       50
  • Bluegill                   350         250      150
  • Hybrid Bluegill         100          90       75
  • Redear                    50           35        25
  • Channel Catfish       100          75        50
  • Minnows                 10lbs.     10lbs.   10lbs.
  • Grass Carp               5             5         5

Price Guide

Spring 2018 Price guide (pdf)


How Do I Stock My Pond?

We have several options available .

Order Now

You can place an order online for delivery and pick up at our location.

Fish Species Profiles

Learn more about the species we offer.