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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Homegrown Shrimp

Time to round up the shrimp herd. :)

The last few weeks I have been bringing in the shrimp from my windmill pond....

In the spring, I stock the pond with juvenile shrimp......

Releasing the shrimp into the pond.....

They are small, cute little buggers. :)

This is a picture of one of the traps I use to harvest the shrimp. It's a homemade crawdad trap.
The shrimp have to be harvested before cold weather sets in. They will not survive in water temperatures under 65 degrees.

I bait the traps and leave them in the pond overnight...then check them once a day, removing the shrimp and rebaiting the traps......

The shrimp grow at different rates. Some are more aggressive than others and grow larger....

These have been sitting in a bit of salt water to purge. ( I don't always purge them though)..

Then I chill them and get them ready for bagging and freezing.

They're not cute anymore, but they sure are tasty! :)

I will add water to the bags before freezing...they seem to keep best that way.

I'm looking forward to some shrimp gumbo this winter!

For more details on how to raise the shrimp click here.. Raising Shrimp


Rocco said...

hey jeanie
do you ever use a vacuum sealer with your food projects?
i have one and it is great for freezing and storing all kinds of food!

Ken said...

Just one more reason I always make time to check your website frequently, you are the best............

Good looking scrimps, your pond must be very balanced (chemically)

cowgirl said...

Hi Rocco, I do not have a food sealer and I keep thinking I should get one. I've tried those little hand pump sealers and they seem to work well...someday I need to get a big one!

cowgirl said...

Ken, thank you. :) I appreciate you stopping by whenever you get the time. Hope all is going well with you.

My little pond has fresh water almost constantly being pumped into it from the windmill. The water is pretty tasty too. Especially on a hot summer day. :)

Thanks again Ken!

Chris said...

Ok, Alexis just looked at this post and said that you are awesome, high praise from my wife (who is spectacularly awesome herself!).

I showed a bunch of folks at work your apple dessert thing you did last week and everyone was drooling and bookmarking the page.

cowgirl said...

:) Chris...please tell Alexis Thank you! I appreciate the nice comment. :)
Thank you too for sharing my blog with friends, I'm glad to hear they liked my smoked apple dumplins. :)
Thanks Chris!!

Big Dude said...

Jeanie - The shrimps look like they'll be real tasty. Do you actually buy any meat? or raise or shoot it all :)

cowgirl said...

Thanks Big Dude! :)
I actually do not need to buy meat. Between the beef, pork, poultry, and shrimp I raise...and the venison, dove, quail, pheasant, crawdads and fish I catch... I eat pretty well year round. :)

The problem I run into is I love beef ribs/pork ribs...but there are only so many ribs on one steer/pig... I can't go out and shoot another one when I run out. lol

I make do with what I have on hand.

If I could raise crablegs and oysters, I'd be one happy cowgirl. :)

YD, sometimes with Samantha & June said...

That's nice! I love shrimp.

A Year on the Grill said...

wow... what a great post. You have a very exciting blog to read. It is quickly becoming a must read for me. Life is good

cowgirl said...

Thank you YD! Shrimp are one of my favorites too! :)

cowgirl said...

Thank you so much A Year on the Grill! That is so kind of you to say. :)


Frugal Canadian Hermit said...

That is some of the largest shrimp I've ever seen Jeanie. I did'nt know they even grew to be that big. What have you been feeding those things, beef? lol. They sure do look tastey.

cowgirl said...

lol Mark,I probably should count my cows...maybe the shrimp ate one or two. lol
They mainly eat bugs in the pond. When I do feed them, I use a 32%protein fish feed.
Did you know they actually make Shrimp feed? The feed stores here do not carry it though.
These shrimp pictured were not the largest I've raised, some get a little bit bigger.
They are pretty tasty! :)

Hope the weather is cooperating with you up there. :)

Mrs. JP said...

Hey,,,If you could only train sea horses to round them up.
I"m being silly...they look great and I bet they're delicious.

cowgirl said...

lol Mrs JP! That would be a fun thing to try... sea horses. lol
They are pretty tasty, I've had great luck raising them here. :)

Thanks Mrs JP!

Anonymous said...

I've been lurking round here for a while now, reading up on your cast iron cooking, but this is the most awesome thing I've ever seen!

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

Sweet looking shrimp. I'd love to try that one day.

cowgirl said...

Hey Kirby, thanks! I appreciate you checking my blog out...and for stopping in to say hi. :)
The shrimp are pretty tasty. I hope to smoke some this weekend if I get the time.

Thanks again Kirby!

cowgirl said...

Thank you Dr Monkey! They are fairly easy to raise.. if you have good well water, or a good water source.
Hope you give it a try!
Thank you for stopping by. :)

Sara said...

Your shrimp post last year was what first caught my eye! Glad to hear that your harvest went well this year too :)

cowgirl said...

Thank you Sara! The shrimp crop was good again this year. I had to harvest them a few days earlier than last year but they were pretty good sized anyway.
I appreciate you stopping by. :)

Frank said...

So are you in Texas? Seems that growing shrimps would be a great idea, but I'm sure up here in Illinois the growing season would be too short to get many quality sized critters.

cowgirl said...

Frank, I'm in the northern part of Oklahoma. I know that shrimp are raised in Kentucky, Kansas and Ohio... not sure how much farther north than that.
You would need to have a way to keep the water temperature above 65 degrees for a longer growth period.
They can be raised indoors in large tanks with a good supply of fresh water and good filtering system. Well water is best, no chemicals that will kill the shrimp.
You would also need to separate them with netting to keep them from fighting.

The Mississippi State (MSU Cares) site listed on the right side of my page has some excellent information.
Good luck to you Frank, if you give it a try, please keep me posted on how it goes!

Anonymous said...

You did mention what the lowest water temperature can be but I was curious about the UPPER limit on water temperature. Here in central Texas, I'm sure the water temp reaches 90 degrees or even higher in our long, hot summers. And can you say about what month you're confident to stock your pond in the spring? I know that water maintains a fairly steady temp but if you stocked them when it reached 65 and then there was a a cold snap and the water temp plunged a few degrees, you could lose everything.

cowgirl said...

Hi Anonymous!
There is a more detailed description on raising the shrimp in my "favorites" list at the top of the page. It's the last entry on the list.

They do not survive in water above 95 degrees. Here in my area of Oklahoma, I am able to stock the middle to end of May and harvest the end of September through the middle of October. I keep a close eye on the water temp in the fall.

I know there are others in Texas that have had good luck raising the shrimp... I would think if your pond is deep enough the bottom water temperature would stay cool enough for the shrimp to survive.
A cold snap could cause problems but it would have to be a snap that lasted quite awhile to effect the whole pond.
Hope this helps Anonymous, let me know if I didn't answer your questions!

DK said...

Dear cowgirl,
Me and my friend were interested in trying this on a smaller scale over the summer using a fairly large fish tank, we were wondering if you would be able to give us more detail where you bought your juvenile shrimp and the feed used as all we have been able to find are brine shrimp. As i said it is using a tank so we would need to start entirely from scratch so any ideas or tips would be greatly appreciated :)

cowgirl said...

Hi DK!
On the right side of my blog page under my "Favorite Sites" list is a link to the MSU site. They have great info on raising shrimp. They also have a list of juvenile suppliers. Grown shrimp require 2sq.ft of space each but you can make cages using bird netting to separate them. If you get on the MSU site, check out the Texas Aquaculture site, it has info on raising them in cages and tanks. Hope this helps! Good luck to you!

Craig Irwin said...

I found your blog from someone's post on Facebook. I have enjoyed it tremendously. We ARE related!!!! I have a great intrest in the Fresh Water Shrimp grow out idea of yours. I have tossed the idea around now now for some while. I farm Southern NM and would like email you directly with some questions if that were possible and you would be so kind. I'm not sure how this works and if you will be able to contact me in return without my email address if I dont enclose it. I will provide a "trash" email address here and monitor it for your response. Thank you, again.

cowgirl said...

Hi Craig, it's nice to meet you! :)
Always enjoy meeting a like minded relative! :)
I will use the email to contact you.
Thanks for the kind comments about my blog and thank you for stopping by!

Unknown said...

Hi - Very cool! Where do you get the juvenile shrimp from?

cowgirl said...

Thanks Unknown! I get mine in Texas.. they are available in a few other states now. Mississippi and Kentucky too I believe.
The Mississippi State University site used to have a list of suppliers.
Good luck with them! :)