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Thread: How long will minnows live in a bucket

  1. #1
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    Default How long will minnows live in a bucket

    Sometimes I have leftover minnows nd don't want to fool with a whole bait tank setup. How long will minnows survive in a 5 gallon bucket if I keep a small air pump running? Say it is 2 or 3 dozen in about 3 gallons of water. I'll keep it cool.

    I'm not asking about building some bait tank - just wondering if minnows can make it more than 24 to 48 hours in a bucket with a bubbler running.

    Will a pinch of goldfish food keep em living longer?
    Small Boat Pro Staff

  2. #2
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    I would say 48 hours would be about as long as I would attempt it myself.

  3. #3
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    I have on multiple occasions had minnows left over and with a little aerator keep them alive and perky for three to four days. Just make sure they have enough water and out of the direct sunlight.
    fishing and filleting; that's how I roll!:D

  4. #4
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    The trick is to not overcrowd and keep the water cool. A "Cool Bubbles" minnow bucket works very well for me and they are supplied with their own pump and stone. 2 "D" batteries runs it for about 130 hours.

    Also do a partial water change every day. this will lower the ammonia build-up. Be careful not to change the water temp too rapidly though as this can cause temperature shock. Don't feed unless they look skinny. Causes waste to build up to rapidly.
    CATCH A BIG-UN

  5. #5
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    3 dozen in 3 gallons wouldnt survive 3-4 days I wouldnt think.

  6. #6
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    The main thing is to keep the water out of the sunlight and keep it cool. Minnows will live a long time if you keep the water cool with an aerator. I use a 8 gallon square plastic tub with a bubbler and keep them alive for months. Just feed them a little pinch of fish food every day and thats it.
    It's not a passion! It's A very bad obsession!

  7. #7
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    If you have a 5 gallon bucket that should hold 2 or 3 dozen no problem with an aerator.
    fishing and filleting; that's how I roll!:D

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjbrewer5 View Post
    The main thing is to keep the water out of the sunlight and keep it cool. Minnows will live a long time if you keep the water cool with an aerator. I use a 8 gallon square plastic tub with a bubbler and keep them alive for months. Just feed them a little pinch of fish food every day and thats it.

    Well in that case,3-4 days is just new home adjustment time then :D

    So you shouldnt have nothn to worry about keeping your bait a few days.

  9. #9
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    The main thing is to keep them cool. A frozen bottle of water every day will keep them for awhile.

    WALLY MARSHALL PRO STAFF
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  10. #10
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    I have an old fridge in my basement off of the garage that I use for bait. I keep any minnows in the styrofoam bucket that I have left over, and put them in the fridge and can keep them for about 2 weeks like that. Before I leave the lake I replace the water in the minnow bucket so they have fresh water. I keep minnows, nightcrawler, leeches, red worms, and wax worms in the fridge. I am ready to go fishing just about anytime someone wants to go.
    DO-GOODER EXTRADINAR :p

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