The Pumpkinseed is a Panfish species closely related to the Redear Sunfish. Its brilliant coloration alone makes it a favorite of many fishermen, but it also yields tasty fillets that rival Bluegills.
What sets the Pumpkinseed fish apart from the Bluegill, is its ability to eat snails, which are the intermediate hosts of several fish parasites. Redear Sunfish have traditionally been stocked for this purpose, but they may not survive the severe winters in the upper Midwest, so this makes Pumpkinseed a good alternative. They may take pellets if natural food is short, but the natural food will always be their preference.
Pumpkinseed are native to all of Wisconsin and most of Illinois, making them a terrific choice for snail control. Bear in mind, however, that Bluegill must also be present to focus the Pumpkinseed’s foraging habits predominantly onto the snails. Therefore, when stocking a new pond, we recommend about 100 Pumpkinseed and 200 Bluegill per surface acre. However, when stocking a pond already established with Bass and Bluegill, you may need more than 100 Pumpkinseed per surface acre. Contact Keystone Hatcheries for advice.
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