What Fish can Fit in my Pond Comfortably?

I recently dug a pond that is approximately 100 gallons. It has areas shaded by native plants, it has a shallow area for eggs and fry, as well as a deeper section that is about two feet deep. I was wondering if it can fit any fish or if I will have to settle for frogs? The only requirement is that the fish must be native to Ontario, Canada, as I don’t want to risk spreading invasive species. Thanks for your time!

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I’d consult a reference for the native fish species in Ontario. Gambusia are common small pond fish in many places but I don’t think Eastern Gambusia ranges north to Canada. However that species or Western Gambusia might already be established in your area for mosquito control. Check with local garden stores or your environment or natural resources department for recommendations.

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This is not a useful response, but I just had to report that I saw this headline before I had put on my reading glasses and thought it said “What Fish can Fit in my Hand Comfortably?”.

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I don’t think there are palm fish but there are fingerling fish. (-;

Not that I’m suggesting fingerlings of any species for a small pond since they will outgrow it.

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A fish in the hand is worth two in the bush?

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What about Emerald Shiner? Seems like a small hardy species and it’s available likely in bait shops. Don’t know its tolerance for small pond habitat.

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Smaller shiner, darter and/or minnow species may do well if the pond has enough dissolved oxygen. You might be better off consulting a pond/aquarium forum for this though.

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pumpkinseeds, green sunfish, and Luxilus shiners should all make for decent choices, assuming the pond’s got a decent footprint. Definitely hard to source native fishes though, all of the niche sources I know are US only so you’ll likely have to check your local laws and go out with a dipnet to collect a few fish yourself. “Baitfish” type species should be legal to take & transport alive, at least

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I agree that you should probably look into small fish species local to your area and find some of those. Idk if its legal in Canada but if possible I would recommend you gather the fish from as close to your pond as possible, since bringing them in from areas further away can potentially have an impact on the genetic characteristics of the fish species (this is something I have learned recently and it goes for plants too).
My personal experience in my pond atm is that if you have a lot of fish, which may well happen if they enjoy that space, you may see a decrease in tadpole spawn. Im guessing this is because of competition but I ain’t sure. So I’d recommend setting up a smaller shallow area near the pond specially for frogs (which is what im attempting with my own pond).
Best of luck!

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In Ontario I think the 2 native fish to consider for a pond / pool as small as you’re describing are Brook Stickleback (Culaea inconstans) and Fathead Minnow (Pimephales promelas). Both are relatively small (about 5 cm) and can live in small bodies of water. Since they’re considered bait fish they could likely be purchased from a local bait dealer without having to collect them yourself from the wild. They also both have interesting breeding biology and will keep any mosquitoes under strict control! I have a larger backyard pond with lots of both species, as well as Calico Crayfish (Faxonius immunis). That hasn’t prevented the establishment of a good population of Green Frogs and multiple species of dragonflies and damselflies. In my case they all came on their own without any effort on my part (beyond digging the pond).

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