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Jesus Is Lord!
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In the winter, I will buy a few dozen minnows, put them in a large #3 washtub and feed them the good quality goldfish food. Lots of room and they have bricks and leaves for cover. The tub is in the shade and is covered to keep the cats out of it. Minnows are very nervous fish and die quickly if harrassed too often.

The minnows get fat and grow an inch or two because it might be a month before I use them. The water doesn't get cloudy in cold weather and the minnows rarely show sign from death by lack of oxygen. When the weather turns warm though, the water gets cloudy and the minnows will start to die off. Are there any cheap methods of keeping the water clean and oxygenated in warm weather? Do you know of any minnow keeping/raising kits for tanks no larger than a #3 washtub kept in the shade and up off the ground?
 

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i dont know about keeping the water clean but at bass pro shops you can pick up one of their little battery powered aerators that are only about 6 or 7 dollars that work pretty well. ive used it for keeping buckets of live bait alive. has worked well for me so far! ;)
 

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Here's one way if you have electricity available to power a pond pump. Check out this website.
http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/aquaponic.html

I use a small system like this to grow veggies using goldfish. Works well and the growbed keeps the fish water nice and clean.

You can also go to youtube.com and search on aquaponics. Lots of videos there showing small backyard systems. Good luck.
 

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my mom owns a bait fish shop in lake of the ozarks mo. and they use those battery powered aerators for theyre minnows and goldfish they keep old deep freezers that dont run just for size and the fact they can lock cause they are kept outside all the time and it works like a champ through a little ice every once in awhile to take the temp of the water down a bit. i am constantly doin choirs around there and thats one thing i picked up from my step dad.hope this helps
 

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You got a few things working against you in warmer weather.

Lack of oxygen saturation in the water, water temp, and ammonia build up.

Add some sort of filter. It will circulate the water and allow for gas exchange. Something like a fluval in the smaller size should be just the ticket if electricity is available. Adding a air pump from the aqauarium shop and using wood air stones will generate a ton of very fine bubbles which will be absorbed by the water much more so than your typical air stone. Try to lower the temp of the water. I keep a SW tank outside on my patio and to keep the temps below 80 degrees on 100 plus degree days I freeze a few 2 liter bottles of water and add a couple to the tank on the way to work and then replace them when I get home.
 

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Yeoman Agrarian
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Go to a pet store and buy an aerator. Shouldn't cost too much. In warm weather the water will get stagnant and lose oxygen quicker. The aerator shouldn't cost much at all. Depending on the size of the tank you might want to buy two, which still shouldnt break the budget.
 

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A couple of things.

When you overfeed fish, and I don't know wild minnows to eat packaged food, the food just rots and makes your water cloudy. Cloudy water is from bacteria that feed on extra food or dead fish, like when some start to die and then they are all dead the next day. Even if they eat some, they won't eat much! In the cold, the food decomposes a lot slower. Leaves decompose too. Some of them will make the water more acidic and that's another set of problems.

Temp does indirectly kill them too. Once the water gets over 80 something it doesn't hold much O2. You need a lot of water per fish when that happens. Gallons of water per small fish for long term storage.

Ammonia is broken down by bacteria and they need a place to grow. That's why the fish tank filters have the fiberous little filters in them. If you have a good, established filter, you can have more fish in a smaller tank. Otherwise, few fish and a big tank. I think the aquaruim rule of thumb for an established tank is an inch of fish per gallon of water. It's easy to put way to many fish in a bait tank and have them all die. I've done it a bunch, myself. I have a 55 gallon tank in the basement for my bait supply.

Don't think you can stock your tank as thick as they do at the bait shop. They've got the water all chemicalled up and often the tanks are large in gallons and the temps are stable because they are huge in gallons and they may be partially in the ground which cools them down.
 
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