Fishy Businesses Seeing Boom After Ponds and Stock Tanks Fill With Water

What a difference a few weeks make.

Ponds used to be dry, but thanks to recent rainfall they're full.

Some are even overflowing so that means a lot of these stock ponds have a lot of water, but no fish.

Local stocking companies are now playing "go fish" to keep up with demand.

Business is going swimmingly lately for Paul Patranella and employees at the Bait Barn in Bryan.

"The business has just gone through the roof. It's like turning on a light switch literally. The rains, all the ponds filled up," said Paul Patranella.

It's been the busiest February ever here at the Bait Barn.

Right now they're selling get this; 400,000 minnows a week.

Hunter Chauvin of Kurten came for some catfiish, and minnows for fish to eat in his tank.

News 3 caught up with him at his place as he restocked his small pond himself.

"It was my second one in three weeks just trying to get this thing restocked to take care of everything. Just a fun tank," said Chauvin.

One after another customers came to the store.

James Robeson is taking his catch of 50 perch to his place near Centerville.

"I have a small pond in the front yard with some perch in it and maybe by the time I get grandkids somewhere down the road we'll have a place to take the kids fishing," said Robeson, of Leon County.

"Just doing the outdoor thing with the kid it's a great thing, a great weekend," said Kerry Caffey of Houston.

Caffey and his 13-year-old son Caleb were headed to a weekend in Rockdale.

"We had a new pond dug during the drought so we're gonna restock it up with perch and baitfish that we can fish in the lakes jug fishing or whatever," said Caffey.

"Everybody's pond went dry, everybody cleaned 'em out. We got rain all at once. That's the perfect thing for our business and thank God because we've been bored for the last year," said Paul Patranella.

A new year that hopefully brings more water for area anglers and farmers and ranchers too.

The Bait Barn delivers fish statewide.

Right now they are driving up to a fish farm in Little Rock twice a week to keep up with the demand here.

Folks there say most people are spending between $250 and $400 per acre of water.

KBTX-TV Channel 3 4141 E. 29th Street Bryan, TX 77802 Phone: (979) 846-7777 Fax: (979) 846-1490 News Fax: (979) 846-1888
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