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10 Bluegill Fishing Techniques That Work – Catch Your Limit!

Bluegill fish lying on the grass.

If you want to catch your limit of delicious bluegills then you will want to keep reading. I have compiled a list of 10 bluegill fishing techniques that work wonders and you will catch your limit of these panfish day in and day out!

Bluegills are one of the most plentiful fish species we have in North America. They are stocked and naturally flourishing in most of our lakes rivers and streams. One of the great things about bluegill fishing is that they congregate close to the shore so there’s no need to get into a boat to fish these blue, gill covered beauties! 

I remember as a kid catching bluegills in lakes close to my home. I would pack up my bike with a tackle box and fishing pole and catch a stringer full of panfish every day. Then I would go home and gut and scale them and have my mom fry them up! It makes a youngster feel accomplished by catching his/her own food for the day. Oh, the good old days!

So I decided to write up a list of 10 bluegill fishing techniques that will get you catching your limit. Let’s get right into it. Enjoy!

10 Bluegill Fishing Techniques


Hooked bluegill with hanging worm

Tip 1 -  Farm Ponds Hold The Biggest Bluegills

Believe it or not farm ponds usually hold the biggest bluegills around. This is because ponds that are located on farms are usually clean bodies of water and the fish can live for years unhindered by overfishing and other invasive species that sometimes get into our lakes and rivers from boaters.

So if you want to catch some of the biggest bluegills around you should check out the farms in your area and ask the owners if you can fish in their pond. Most farmers would be happy to let you do this and if not just say thank you and find another farm. Doesn’t hurt to ask, right?

Tip 2 - Best  Baits For Bluegills

When choosing baits for bluegill fishing you want to think small size baits because bluegills mouths are so small.

Canned corn, nightcrawlers, bread and beef sausage sticks.

Bluegills and most types of bream are receptive to all sorts of baits. The best bait I recommend is, of course, nightcrawlers. You will want to cut the nightcrawlers up in little pieces about 10 pieces per nightcrawler. Because if you put a whole nightcrawler on a hook the bluegills will just slip your bait off the hook so that you will have to continually bait your hook.

Another type of worm that works is wax worms because they are just the right size to fit in the mouth of bluegill. Waxworms are a little more expensive then nightcrawlers so you have to consider that when purchasing your worms.

Some other unconventional baits that work well are sweetcorn kernels, slim jim beef jerky, and bread. You will be amazed at what these slabs will feed on. Do some experimenting with these baits and see which ones work the best for your particular fishing situation.

Tip 3 - Present Flies when Bluegills are Nesting

When bluegills are spawning you will want to not disturb the nests. To keep from disturbing the fish in the nests you will want to get a fly rod and present flies to the shallow areas around the nest. 

As long as the bluegills in the nest are not spooked you will be able to fish this technique all day and catch a motherload of bluegills. Wolly worms and Wolly buggers work the best for fly fishing for bluegill while they are spawning.

Check out my article about fly fishing bream for more information.

Tip 4 - Small Hooks and Light Test

Since bluegill slabs are small under 1 pound, “unless you are finding some monsters” you will want to use small size hooks. Using a number 6 hook is just about the perfect size hook to use for bluegill fishing. If you use too big of a hook the bluegills will just nibble your bait away and you will never set the hook because it’s too big to fit in their mouth.

You will want to consider the test of the line you are using as well. Two to four-pound test line is plenty for bluegill fishing.

Tip 5 - Best Time To Catch Bluegills

Two people fishing at dusk.


Like a lot of fish, early morning or late evening is the best time to catch bluegills. That’s because panfish feed this time of day. They will eat all day and night but the optimal time to catch bluegills is in the early morning or late evening.

So what you can do is catch half your limit in the early morning. Cook them up for breakfast and take a nap. Then get up in the evening and catch the other half of your limit and cook that up for supper! The next day does it all over again. The perfect life! Fish, eat, sleep, repeat!

During the spawn is another perfect time to catch bluegills. They are very receptive to all sorts of baits during this time. The usual spawning season for bluegills in North America is between the months of June through August. But female bluegills are known to spawn up to nine times a year between late spring to early fall.

Tip 6 - Deeper Water Holds Big Slabs

Fishing the deeper water you will find the bigger bluegills especially at the end of summer early fall. Find waters that are 7 to 17 feet deep and you will find those big bluegills just waiting for your bait.

Fish along the weed lines at various depths to find the depth that these fish are. Once you find the right depth just keep fishing there and you will be amazed at the number of big slabs you will catch. Using a fish finder can help you find the right depth the bluegills are at more easily.

The big bluegills during the end of summer are done protecting the nests and are out in the deeper water. You will still find smaller bream in the shallow waters because they hide there protected from predators. But the big bluegills go deep because they don’t need the protection.

Fighting monster bluegill is like fighting bass fun and rewarding at the same time. And bluegills are a lot less finicky then bass.

Tip 7 - Use Slip Bobbers

The type of bobber you use can be critical in how far bluegills will take the bait. The longer they have the bait in their mouth the better chance you will have at hooking them. I recommend using slip bobbers instead of the commonly used round bobbers. 

Slip bobbers will go with the fish and bait without very much resistance. Unlike round bobbers that have a ton of resistance that the fish will feel and might not hang on as long. Slip bobbers will tip up a little when there is a nibble so that you will know to get ready.

Tip 8 - Lighter is Better

When I fish for bluegills or any panfish for that matter I usually don’t use sinkers or anything that’s going to weigh the bait down. Because the hook, line, and bait should be enough weight. The more weight you have at the end of your line the more resistance the fish is going to feel.

And the more resistance the fish feels it’s going to think something isn’t right and let go of your bait. This is the last thing you want. So keep it light as possible.

Tip 9 - Jig Fishing For Bluegills

Other than live baits artificial baits work well when fishing for bluegills. Small jigs work well and the smaller the better because of the smallmouths even big bluegills have. That’s one of the only downfalls of fishing for bluegills is trying to get a hook out of those tiny mouths especially when they swallow the hook.

Using tiny jigs that imitate bugs is the best kind of jig to use when fishing bluegills. Bream love small bugs and when they want a little snack they will typically go after these bugs. You will also want to pair the bug jig with a tiny piece of worm or attractor scent because bluegills will smell their bait before the strike. So sight and scent are important in how many bluegills you will catch in a day.

Tip 10 - 3 Types of Float Rigs to Use 

Various types of fishing floats

There are three types of float rigs that work wonders for catching bluegills.

  • Waggler Float

These floats come in two types bodied or straight and are only attached to the bottom of the fishing line. Some of the materials that make up waggler floats are balsa wood, plastic, reed, and cane.

  • The Primal Slip float

The basic primal slip float includes a slip bobber, swivel, split shot, short leader and a jig at the end. You can more accurately fish around objects like fallen sunken trees and fishing docks using a slip float type rig.

  • Bubble Rig

With the bubble rig, you start with an artificial hair jig. Tie the jig to four-pound fluorocarbon line. Tie that to one end of a swivel and then tie the other end of the swivel to four-pound test line and at the top, you have a just a bubble bobber.

There are many types of floats and rigs but I have found that these three work the best for bluegill fishing. I encourage you to experiment with other rigs and floats. You never know what will personally work for you and the way you fish.

Conclusion


Bluegill fish swimming.

Put these bluegill fishing techniques to work and you will be catching more bluegills then you will know what to do with. Here is a summary of the 10 techniques for catching bluegills.

Bluegills usually get the biggest in farm ponds so find a farm and ask the owner if you can fish his ponds.

Best baits to use:

  • Nightcrawlers
  • Sweetcorn kernels
  • Wax Worms
  • Slim Jim Beef Jerky
  • Bread

Present artificial flies when bluegill is nesting so as you don’t disrupt the spawning process.

Use  number 6 small hooks, light tackle, and Four-pound test fishing line

The best time to catch bluegills is in the early morning or late evening and during the summer months when they are spawning.

Deepwater holds the biggest bluegill slabs. The smaller fish will stick around the shallows while the bigger bluegills will generally stay in the deeper waters along weed lines.

Use slip bobber's for less resistance. The more resistance bluegill feels the less likely he will hang onto your bait.

The lighter your fishing tackle the better. This has to do with resistance like the use of slip bobbers. The less resistance a fish feels the longer it will stay at the end of your line giving you a better chance at hooking it.

Use tiny bug looking jigs when jigging for bluegills. Bug jigs work well on bluegills that are being finicky.

3 types of floats that are great for catching bluegills:

  1. Waggler float
  2. Primal Slip Float
  3. Bubble Rig

When you start catching bluegills using these techniques please come back here and let us know how it’s working for you. Thanks for reading.

If you have any questions or comments please leave them in the comments section below. And as always Happy Fishing!

Spring Crappie Fishing Techniques | Surefire Tips To Catch More Crappie!

Spring Crappie Fishing Techniques That Work

Spring Crappie Fishing Techniques

These spring crappie fishing techniques will help you catch more crappie during this crucial time of the year for crappie fishing. The ice is getting off of the lakes, and the crappies will be starting to move to shallow water soon.

The areas that the crappies will be migrating to will be not only shallow areas but the areas with a lot of sediment and algae which you will find in the northern bay areas. Crappies migrate to these areas because this type of water warms faster than any other area of the lake. They will also be spawning soon, so they are going to these parts of the lake for that reason as well.

Another reason crappies go shallow is they are hungry from not eating much during the winter season. They are going after the big meals now which is bait fish like minnows. So mostly its a big feeding frenzy for crappies during early spring.

Cast The Shore in a Kayak

Kayak Fishing For CrappieAn excellent way to find where those crappies are is if you have a kayak take it out on the lake and navigate the shoreline areas. Take your kayak into the bays and find downed trees and weeded areas. Go along these areas and cast using a beetle spin lure. Beetle spins are a fast and easy bait to use when you are looking for the areas that the spring crappies will be.

The use of the kayak makes it easy to get into these challenging areas that you would have a harder time fishing from shore. Once you find where the crappies are at you can switch to a jig and slip bobber or a hook minnow and slip bobber, whatever your preferred method of crappie fishing might be.

Jigs, Floats, & Bobbers

Get yourself some 1/32 to ⅛ Oz jigs and use floats or bobbers with them to suspend your lure over the crappies so that they can see the bait dangling there. A lot of the time the crappies that aren’t active will see your jig sitting there for a while and will decide that it would be an easy target to go after.

You will want to play around with the color of the jig heads. Make sure that the jigs mimic minnows and bugs because that is what crappies are feeding on in the spring, summer and autumn months as well.

Pre-spawn

During the pre-spawn early spring, you will find crappies in the shallow weedy areas of the lake where they get the most oxygen. Pre-spawn crappie will be looking for some big meals to give them the energy they will need for when spawning time comes which isn’t far off in most cases.

Crappies will be in large schools this time of year. Early spring is one of the best times of year to catch an abundance of crappie once you locate these schools of fish. You won’t be able to pull the crappies in fast enough!

If you have a fish finder, it’s a good idea to put that to use. It will go along way in helping you find these large schools of crappies and at what depth they are hanging around. Because if you find the schools of fish but don’t know how deep they are, you might be presenting your bait wrong to them and not catch anything. You want your bait to be suspended above them so that they see it and then devour it.

Minnows with a slip bobber or a float are good choices of live bait to use during the pre-spawn. Small sized jigs that are 1/32 to 1/64 Oz, and look like insects are a good choice this time of year for artificial lures.

Spawn Time

When the water temperature starts to warm up around 60 to 70 degrees, Fahrenheit crappies will start their spawn time. The spawning time for crappie can last from two weeks to six weeks depending on the size of the lake. If the water is clear crappies will make their nests in water that is 3 to 6 feet deep. Muddy water you will find crappies spawning in waters that are 2 feet deep.

The more protection from wind and lots of vegetation is where you will find spawning crappies. The best types of lures to use during the spawn time is spinning baits and small micro jigs using 4-pound test. Using this combination of line and bait will ensure that the baits move down slowly in the water enticing the crappies to strike if you’re looking for the bigger sized crappies you will want to use a ⅛ oz jig and 6 to 8-pound test line.

Cast your jig into reedy areas and slowly reel them back in making sure your rod tip is kept high. You will want to use light colored jigs like yellow and pink during the crappie spawn for optimal effectiveness. Pairing these light colored jigs with tubes or plastic curly tails of the same colors help capture crappies during the spawn as well.

Post Spawn

Crappie Fishing TechniquesAfter crappies have spawned, it becomes more difficult to find and catch these fish. They become elusive, and most anglers don’t both fishing for them until the fall. But you can still catch some nice crappies during this time of the year.

Crappies will head back to the deeper water where they were before the spawn. They like it there because of the familiarity and safety that the deeper water provides. You will find them around deeply sunken trees and logs, rock piles and creek channels with drop-offs and ledges.

Fishfinders especially the ones with side-scan can come in handy after the spawn when looking for crappie. You will want to focus your attention on catching the males of the species during the post spawn. When you find where those elusive crappies are hiding, you have to almost hand feed them the bait. Get it right in front of their mouths. This is because after spawning the fish are tired from the spawn and they don’t move very far.

During the post spawn, you will want to try various rigs and depths to get these crappies to eat. Get a few rods rigged up with multiple jigs. Grab some live minnows and start experiment with different depths until you find the right combination. It’s finding that combination of baits and depth that’s the hardest part when fishing crappie post spawn. But once you find the areas and the right combination you can fill your freezer up with crappie!

Spring Crappie Fishing Techniques Conclusion

Spring Crappie Fishing

During the spring is the best time of year to be fishing for crappies. And if you use some of the techniques in this article and fish the right areas of the lake you will find and more than likely catch an abundance of crappie. During the pre-spawn is probably the best time of spring to be catching these fish. They will be headed to their spawning areas as soon as the water temperatures warm which is about 50 to 55 degrees Fahrenheit and the ice starts leaving the lakes. Crappies will be found in big schools during the pre-spawn as well.

At spawning time you will find crappies in water depths that range from 2 to 6 feet deep. This will depend on how clear or muddy the water is. The murkier the water is, the shallower the fish will be. Spinning baits and micro jigs work well during the spawn. The water temperature will be 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit at this time.

Post Spawn Can Be Challenging

If your fishing post spawn, you will have a harder time finding the crappies and getting them to eat. So trying various rigs and depths will be vital in catching crappies during the post-spawn time. But once you find the right combination, you can catch crappie all day long! Consider post spawn crappie fishing a challenge! When you start to bring them in you will be one accomplished and happy angler.

I hope this article on spring crappie fishing techniques helps you catch more crappies. If you have any questions or comments about crappie fishing feel free to leave them in the comments section below. You can also send me your questions through the contact form on this website. You will find it in the menu section at the top of the page. I wish you much success in your fishing adventures and Happy Fishing!

The Crappie Fishing Handbook

The Crappie Fishing HandbookIf you would like to know more spring crappie fishing techniques, tackle, lures and tactics grab yourself a copy of The Crappie Fishing Handbook. You can find this useful book on Amazon and can be purchased digitally through Kindle or in paperback form.

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Catch Monster Muskies With These 10 Muskie Fishing Tips

Muskie Fishing Tips Overview

Muskie Fishing TipsWant to know the ins and outs of catching monster muskies? Look no further I have compiled a list of the top 10 muskie fishing tips that will bring home those monster muskellunge you’re dying to wrestle with! These are proven techniques that many an angler have tested and tried and have enjoyed an abundance of muskie throughout the fishing season.

Tip #1 - Weather Conditions

Weather conditions play a vital role in where you are going to be fishing for these monster muskies. When you have a cloudy, rainy and windy day you will find muskies hanging around rock structures. The Muskies will be found in shallow water as well the more the wind picks up.  But be careful when you fish close to rock structures on windy days. You don’t want your boat smashing into the rocks.

When the weather is calm and sunny, you will find the muskies in the weed beds and sandy areas. Muskies like the weedy areas because they can go undetected when they are searching for prey. And the weeds give off oxygen.

Tip #2 - Crankbaits Work Best When The Weather Turns Cold

CrankbaitThis tip is more for fall fishing for muskie. Crankbaits work the best when the weather turns cold. This is because crankbaits smack against the rock structures and ride over the weed cover creating a flash that muskies love. The muskies are staying down deeper in the colder weather, and a crankbait can sink to the deeper areas that your other musky baits will not. So the muskie can’t resist a lure right in front of them. They will strike it with a vengeance!

Tip #3 - Set Your Hook Properly

Setting your hook may seem obvious, but with muskies, it’s critical that you set the hook in their mouths; otherwise, you will lose many of them. You need to set the hook deep and make sure you are ready when the muskellunge strikes because he is going to strike hard! Hook setting for muskie should be practiced before going out on the lake so that you will be ready when the time comes. No second chances when that monster muskie hits the end of your line. It’s due or die time!

Tip #4 - Master The Use Of Bucktail Lures

Bucktail JigIf you want to catch that trophy monster muskie then you have to learn how to use bucktails effectively. Bucktails are a pretty simple and straight forward lure to fish with, but there are some tricks that you can use to make those muskie go wild for them.

Bucktail jigs work well for muskie fishing because of the realistic hair on them that moves well and realistically in the water. Muskies love this movement of the hair, and it attracts them like nothing else. When a muskie latches on to a bucktail the hair compacts down revealing the hook, now you can have a clean hookset without anything getting in the way.

Here are a few practical ways to present your bucktail.

  1. Rip Jigging – Cast your bucktail and let it sink to the bottom. After that rip it forward before you let it drop to the bottom again.
  2. Work The Jig Along The Bottom – In this technique, you let the bucktail hit bottom and, then you reel the jig bouncing and grinding on the bottom of the lake.
  3. Fish The Bucktail Like a Jerkbait – Here you want to jerk your rod which darts the bucktail along its path in the water.
  4. Fish Them Vertically –  With this presentation technique, you can try different movements of your rod. Try shaking and jerking your rod. You will know when you got the right actions because those monster muskies will let you know by attacking your bucktail.

Try different speeds when you are retrieving the bucktail and when you find the right retrieval speed for the area you are in stick with that speed. This will all depend on if the muskies are feeling aggressive or not on that particular day and lake.

Tip #5 - Catch ‘em Before The Storm

Stormy WeatherOne of the best times to catch the monster muskies is right before a storm is about to hit. For some reason, muskies get aggressive when the weather changes. So anytime there is a major weather change is an ideal time to catch these monsters of freshwater!

Tip #6 - Use The Figure 8 Method

The figure 8 method works well for muskie fishing because muskies will follow their prey for a while before they decide to take action on that prey. To do this cast your line out. When the lure starts getting close to the boat put the tip of your rod in the water. Make wide sweeps in a figure 8 style, and if there is a muskie following your lure, this will intrigue him to strike your lure. Make sure these figure 8 turns are wide because muskies are a big fish and won’t be able to follow small figure 8 turns.

Also, if the muskie is in an aggressive state following close by your boat, you will want to increase your speed of figure 8. But if the muskie is not aggressive slow down the speed.

Tip #7 - Drop Offs and Open Water

In the early spring right after or during the melting period of the ice you will want to find the areas where the muskies are going to spawn. After you have found those areas which would be in the low water flats, you will want to fish for the muskies close to these areas. They will be down in the deeper areas so, focus on fishing drop offs and open waters that are close to the spawning areas.

You will find muskie there because they know they will be spawning soon but the water where they need to go and spawn is still too cold. But the water down deeper is warmer, and that’s where they will hang out waiting for the spring spawn.

The lures that work best at this time of the fishing season are crankbaits, swimbaits, and bucktail jigs. When fishing the bucktail jig at this time of year, you will want to focus on vertical jigging. There will be many muskies in when you find the right area and your chances are good that you will snag a monster out of the bunch!

Tip #8 - Summer Muskie Fishing

Summer Muskie FishingFishing for muskies in the summer can be a frustrating adventure especially if it is sweltering. Muskies won’t feed when it is hot out. So to remedy this fish only in the early morning hours before the sun comes up or during the evening. These times of day will give you the best chance at catching muskies in the summer months. Avoid fishing muskies midday if at all possible during the summer unless it is a cool summer day.

Tip #9 - Autumn Muskie Fishing

When fishing for muskie in the autumn, you will find them in more shallow areas. Focus you fishing in the autumn around weed beds and the edges of weeds. The later in autumn that you go the shallower the muskies will go. Get your bucktail jigs out this time of year. The muskies will eat them up. But keep your speeds of retrieval of the bucktails at a regular pace not over aggressively fishing them.

Tip #10 - Use Long Rods

Long Fishing RodYour back will thank you if you use a long fishing rod when fishing for muskies. The use of the long rod is because you are casting big heavy baits usually when you are muskie fishing. The shorter your rod, the harder on your back and shoulders will be.

Also, using a long rod will help when you are doing your figure 8 method. The figure 8 method was explained in tip #6. The longer rod enables you to make those broader sweeps. Broader sweeps are key when you are doing the figure 8 way. The long rod should be heavy to a heavy X action rod, and when you are using baits that are in pounds in weight, you will want to upgrade to a heavy XX.

Muskie Fishing Tips Conclusion

Now that I have provided you with 10 muskie fishing tips that will help you catch those monster muskies you will want to go out and make use of these tips in the field. I’m confident if you use these 10 tips regularly while you are muskie fishing you will bring in your fair share of monster muskies!

To recap:

  • Be aware of the weather conditions.
  • Crankbaits work best when the weather turns cold.
  • Set Your Hook Properly.
  • Master The Use Of Bucktail Lures.
  • Catch ‘em Before The Storm.
  • Use The Figure 8 Method
  • Fish drop offs and open-waters in the early spring before the spawn.
  • Go after muskies in the evenings or early mornings in the summer season.
  • Fish shallow weed bed areas in the autumn.
  • Use a long rod.

If you have any questions or comments, please leave them in the comments section below. I hope you find this article useful and as always Happy Fishing!

To learn more on muskie fishing check out the book 25 Can't-Miss Musky Patterns. This book was written by the editors and writers of The Musky Hunter Magazine. 

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Largemouth Bass Fishing Tips – 8 Tips That Will Get You More Bass!

Largemouth Bass Fishing TipsAre you ready to go on your first bass fishing trip? Before you do, you will want to read this article. I have compiled eight largemouth bass fishing tips that will give you the edge you need to catch more bass than you ever thought possible!

The largemouth bass is one of the most fun and demanding fish species to catch. So without further ado, let’s get into the bass fishing tips you will need to know to make your bass fishing trip a successful one.

Tip #1 – Five Artificial Baits That Will Help You Catch More Largemouth Bass…

There are five artificial lures you want to make sure that you have in your largemouth bass fishing arsenal.

  1. The first and most popular lure for largemouth bass fishing year round is the skirted jig. Jigs are work wonders if you are hard water fishing or summertime fishing. Bass love these things and if you don’t have a good assortment of skirted jigs I recommend you go out and get you a bunch.
  2. The second artificial bait for largemouth bass would be crankbaits. You will want to focus on the big-billed crankbaits they seem to work the best around underwater structures such as sunken trees and weed beds.
  3. Thirdly you will want to have an assortment of swimbaits. Swimbaits work well when they are on an umbrella rig. They work well because they look and act just like the prey that largemouth bass are use to feeding on.
  4. Number four in the list would be the good old rubber worm. These work great any time of year and in any weather condition. Fish these artificial worms in the weed beds, around docks and piers. If you’re having no luck with the other artificial baits, the rubber worm usually will do the trick as long as the bass are hanging around where you are fishing.
  5. If all else fails, grab a jig and a plastic crayfish. These two lures together work wonders for catching largemouth bass and can be fished year round. Craws are foragers, and largemouth bass just love these little creatures. You can fish them around weed beds and in deeper waters because that’s where you will find the crayfish.

Tip #2 – The Best Times Of Day To Fish For Largemouth Bass

Our second tip is to know when the best times of day that you will be the most successful in catching largemouth bass. The best times are right before sunrise and right before sunset for about an hour each time. This is true for most fish they have feeding schedules, not unlike us humans.

So you can wake up early and be ready for the morning onslaught. Then you can take a nap in the afternoon if you like and be prepared for the evening fishing bash! You can catch them all day long but the best times are in the early morning and late evenings.

Tip #3 – What Are The Bass Feeding On?

Largemouth Bass TipsA little research can go along way when you are largemouth bass fishing. Find out from your local bait stores or other anglers who have fishing for bass in the area you are going to fish in about what type of prey bass feed on in the area. You can also find what they’re feeding on after you catch one they usually will throw up the contents of their stomach.

I know it sounds disgusting, but once you see what they have eaten, it will give you a good idea of exactly what kind of live bait you want to fish with when you find out to get that type of live bait or artificial bait that mimics the live bait and give that a try.

Tip #4 – What Color and Size Are The Largemouths Going For?

Before you start fishing look around and see what colors the forage is in the area and match those colors as close you can to your artificial lures. Fish are visual creatures so if you can match the natural color around them you will have a better chance at catching them.

If the day is cloudy or sunny can be a factor as well in your lures color choice. A lighter color, such as yellow for when it’s cloudy out and a darker color or translucent color for when it is sunny.

Also, find out about what size prey they are going after and match your bait size with the real preys size. The big largemouths won’t know the difference from your bait or the real thing!

Tip #5 – Be Quiet!!!

A good tip for when you are fishing for largemouth bass is to keep your mouth shut! Bass will spook if you are talking too loudly so make as little noise as possible. If you are fishing with other especially just whisper and you will have a better chance at not spooking the bass. Your friends may not want what to listen to you anyway.:)

Tip #6 – Fish For Bass Pre-Spawn

Pre Spawning BassWhen largemouth bass are in the pre-spawn phase is a perfect time to be fishing for them. During pre-spawn and while spawning they will come to the same areas year after year. And during this time bass are extremely territorial, and they will attack just about anything that gets in their way!

The pre-spawn and spawning periods for bass happen different times of the year depending on your geographical location. In my area of Wisconsin, pre-spawn starts in late April and lasts until early July. So if you live in my area of the country, this would be the time to hammer the largemouth bass and catch your limit.

Tip #7 – Cast Against The Wind

I know it sounds like a pain in the,  you know what but cast against the wind. Bass swim with the current, so if you cast against the current, you will be presenting your lure in front of the bass instead of behind them. They won’t be spooked so easily this way because the noise that you might produce will carry away from the bass not at them.

Tip #8 – Fish In Shallow Water During The Spawn

When the bass are spawning, you will find them in shallow water because that is where the bass are laying their eggs. Cast and fish shallow and they will also be close to the edges of the banks. Doing this will help you catch more largemouth bass than you know what to do with.

These Eight Tips Will Help You Catch More Largemouth Bass

The more you practice and use these tips in the field the better your chances are at snagging that big largemouth bass. So go out have fun put into use each one of these largemouth bass fishing tips and bring home the motherload!

If you have any questions or comment, please leave them below. Thanks for reading and Happy Fishing!

 

Walleye Ice Fishing Tips – 5 Proven Tips That Work!

Are you looking for some walleye ice fishing tips to help you catch these monsters of the deep? If you are, you have come to the right place. In this article, I will explain to you five proven tips that work wonders for catching walleye through the ice.

We all know walleye can be a tricky fish to catch especially when you are ice fishing. So I won’t bore you with fluff lets get right into those five proven tips and get you out ice fishing for walleye while the fishing is good.

Tip #1 – Dead Stick Fish When The Walleyes Aren’t Biting

If you have never heard of dead stick fishing, it’s easy to do and will help you catch those walleyes when you are ice fishing. First, you need to drill a hole next to the hole that you are fishing in. Next, you want to rig up the rod that you’re going to dead stick the walleyes with. You want to rig them up with a stick float. Here’s how you rig a dead stick.

On your braided mainline, you slide a small rubber bobber stop. Next, you want to slip a dead stick float onto your braided line and tie a micro swivel #12 onto the line. After that, you want to take an 18” fluorocarbon leader and tie it to the micro swivel on one of the ends and whatever lure you are using to the other end.

Then you want to slider your bobber stopper to the depth you want to fish at and let your lure go down the hole. The dead stick float will slide until it hits the bobber stopper and your off and fishing. If you need to adjust the depth, you are fishing at slide the stopper to whatever the desired depth is.

Not much to it. You let that dead stick rod sit there and jig aggressively with your other rod like you usually would do. The rod that you are actively fishing with will lure the walleyes in and if they don’t bit on that rod they will go for the dead stick rig set-up and hopefully bite on that one.

We do this dead stick fishing method because most fish in iced over cold water will be lethargic because their metabolism slows way down and will naturally go for the bait that’s easiest for them to capture.

Tip #2 – Fish Over Rock Structures

In the mid-winter when the walleyes are being picky on the bait and lures, you use you want to find a spot on the lake that you are fishing over rock structures that are around 16 feet deep. I don’t know why it is, but walleyes will bite more often in this terrain in the dead of winter.

To know the depth and the terrain that is below you will want to get yourself a fish finder. These come in real handy for ice fishing not just to know the depths and topography below the ice but to know if there are fish where your fishing as well.

It helps to have two people when you are looking for rocky bottom areas. One person will drill the holes along a dropoff, and the other person will go behind with the fish finder and measure the depth of the water and see if there is any rock structure underneath the ice. If you do this and pick the right holes to fish, you should come up with some nice walleye.

Tip #3 – Leave Room To Set Your Hook

This tip is for when you are fishing in an ice shelter, and it’s a tip for whatever kind of fish you are fishing for. Your ice fishing shelter might be 5 to 6 feet in height on the inside and if you are holding your rod a foot or more above the hole that doesn’t give you enough room to set your hook effectively.

To remedy this, you will want only to hold your rod about 3 inches above the fishing hole. Doing this will ensure that you have enough room to hook that walleye and bring him home to the frying pan.

Tip #4 – Best Time To Catch Walleye Is During Sunrise and Sunset

Walleye Fishing TipsLike most fish, the best time to catch walleye is when the sun is rising in the morning and when the sun is setting in the evening. These times of day is a fish’s natural feeding cycle. During these hours of the day the walleyes are swimming out from under the weed bed covers, and you have a more significant area that you can fish and catch walleye. And because you can fish a wider area of water, you won’t have to drill so many holes because the walleye will be just about anywhere you can think.

You will want to drill your holes ahead of time. Don’t be drilling holes during the peak walleye fishing hours of sunrise and sunset because this will disrupt the natural flow of the fish. Have the holes already drilled and then do some sampling of the holes until you find a few spots that are ample with walleye and then focus on those areas during the peak time.

Tip #5 – Vibration Gets The Walleyes Attention

The last tip in this walleye ice fishing tips article is to use vibration to get the walleye’s attention. To do this, you want to hit the bottom of the lake with your lure and raise the lure slowly. Doing this will stir up the mud and sediment on the bottom. It also causes the vibration necessary to get the walleyes attention. And when stirring up the bottom sediment, your lure will be mimicking a live creature that the walleyes would be used to feeding on.

You also might want to use a vibrating blade lure when you fish walleye with this method. When using a vibrating blade lure, you want to move the bait up and down about 3 feet. Make sure to keep aggressively jigging the lure. This will attract the fish in. If the walleye are active and ready to strike it will either grab your vibrating blade lure or the walleye if it is not prepared for a fight will go after your dead stick if you have one set up close by.

Put These Walleye Ice Fishing Tips To The Test

Walleye Winter Fishing TipsNow that I have shown you these effective walleye ice fishing tips it’s time for you to put them to the test. We all know that walleyes can be finicky when it comes to their eating habits especially in the winter. But if you put all five of these tips to good use, you should start catching some nice healthy sized walleye.

To recap when the walleyes aren’t biting start by dead stick fishing. This is where drill a hole close to the hole you are actively fishing. Put your dead stick fishing lure down the other hole and let it sit there.

With the second tip, you will need a fish finder. Use your fish finder to look for depths of the water and what structures are beneath the ice. I recommend you get yourself a Vexilar fish finder. Vexilar fish finders work best because they give you a clear reading of what’s underneath the ice.

Drill a bunch of holes along a drop off and find the best spots to fish. For walleye, you want about 16 feet of depth with rock structure.

The third tip is when you are fishing in an ice shelter leave plenty of room to set your hook. To do this hold your rod about two to three inches above the fishing hole. Holding your rod close will allow you enough room. Otherwise, you will be hitting the roof of your shelter when you are hooking the walleye.

The Best Time To Catch Walleye

Peak time to catch walleye is either in the early morning hours and or late in the evening when the sun is setting.

The fifth and final tip for walleye ice fishing is to use vibration to get the walleyes attention. Aggressively hit the bottom of the lake with your lure and bring it up slowly. Doing this will get the walleyes attention by stirring up the bottom sediment and causing vibration through the water. The stirring up of the sediment and the vibrations mimics the living creatures that the walleye are used to feeding on.

I hope these walleye ice fishing tips help you catch more walleye. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below. Good luck ice anglers and Happy Fishing!

Fly Fishing Beginners Guide – Discover What You Need To Start Fly Fishing

Fly Fishing Beginners GuideThe following is a beginners guide to fly fishing that I thought I would put together because I get so many questions on how to get started fly fishing?

I will explain the basics of what you need to get started in fly fishing and then show you a few tricks and techniques that work quite well for the beginner fly fisherman.

Beginners Guide To Fly Fishing – The Equipment

When you first start fly fishing, you will want to purchase some equipment. There are fly fishing kits you can get on Amazon that provide you with everything you need to get started, or you can purchase individual pieces of equipment. I will explain both and show you what’s out there so you can get started fly fishing as fast as possible.

Fly Fishing Rod/Reel

The first piece of equipment you want to start looking for is a fly fishing rod and reel. There are many to choose from. They can get expensive but if you are serious about learning how to fly fish you might as well get a good fly fishing rod and reel which will make it easier to learn with, and you will find fly fishing more enjoyable.

Redington Vice Fly Fishing Outfit

You will want a rod that is easy to cast, lightweight but strong enough to catch a variety of fish. With that in mind, I would recommend getting the Redington Vice Fly Fishing Outfit. This is a rod and reel combo made by Redington a trusted name in the sport of fly fishing.

The rod is easy to set-up with a dot system to help you. It has a sturdy Cordura rod tube with built-in rod dividers. It also has excellent accuracy and control because of multi-fiber carbon blanks. The reel seat is made out of anodized aluminum which will last a long time no matter what type of water you are fishing in be it freshwater or saltwater.

The Redington Vice rod/reel combo comes with RIO Mainstream Fly Line, iD Reel, and a rod/reel case. This combo also comes in six different sizes and are priced accordingly from $239.99 up to $299.99. This is a perfect rod/reel combo to purchase for a beginner.

Wild Water Rod/Reel Combo

Another rod/reel combo I would recommend that’s about half the price of the Redington is the Wild Water ⅚ 9’ rod fly fishing complete starter kit. This starter kit comes with a nine-foot ⅚ weighted four piece rod. The large reel is preinstalled with fishing line. It also comes with a rod case, rod sock, backing and leader, fly box, flies and an instruction book. Also included is a spare leader, zinger and nipper/knot tying tool.

The Wild Water combo kit pretty much has everything you need right out of the package to get started in fly fishing and for half the price of the one, I mentioned earlier.

Flies

Fly Fishing NymphThe next thing you will need if you’re just starting in fly fishing is the fly. There are as many artificial flies on the market than there are real flies in the world. So I narrowed down a list of 10 for you so that you can get the flies that work the best. That way you can start fly fishing on the right foot.

  1. Crayfish Fly
  2. Pheasant Tail Nymph
  3. Bunny Leech
  4. Soft Hackle
  5. San Juan Worm
  6. Muddler Minnow
  7. Parachute Adams
  8. Elk Hair Caddis
  9. Woolly Bugger
  10. Gold-ribbed Hare’s Ear

I know the names are weird, but that is the ten best flies that you can get for whatever type of fish you are trying to catch when fly fishing.

Fly Fishing Beginners Guide – Tips and Techniques

Now that you know what you need in equipment and lures to fly fish with I will show you some tips and techniques to go with it.

The first and probably most important tip I can give someone just starting in fly fishing is your going to need patience. It takes time and experience to get the right rhythm down that you will need to effectively fly fish.

Watch Real Flies

When you are fishing watch how the real flies land? How do they buzz around the water? You are the guide to the artificial fly, and you will want to present it as close to the real thing as possible. You will never get it perfect but if you get it close you will start catching those fish.

Wrist control

Wrist control is crucial when you are casting. You don’t want to cock your wrist too far back. When the line slaps the water too hard, or your rod brushes the ground when your casting then you know you are moving your wrist too far back and you will want to adjust your technique.

Arc Your Rod and Hold The Tip High

Rod/Reel ComboWhen you hook a fish, you will want to keep a good curve and the tip up high on your rod even if the fish runs with the fly. Doing this ensures the fish will stay hooked and you will go home a happy angler with supper to boot!

You have to be able to read the water. When you see foam or bubbles in a line on top of the water, there is a good chance fish are feeding right below it. This is because dead flies will collect in the foam and thus the fish will be after those dead flies.

If the fish are not biting, try using a hook size smaller fly. I have heard when the fish are pressured they are wary of larger flies.

The last tip is to cast your fly on to a lily pad. Bass are notorious for waiting patiently right under a lily pad for its prey to fall off into the water. Then they strike with a vengeance. So let your fly sit on the lily pad for a while and then drop it down into the water.

In The End

I hope this little fly fishing beginners guide helps you start fly fishing on the right foot. Go out there and start fly fishing today. I know you will love it. Thanks for reading and Happy Fishing.

If you have any questions or comments, please leave them in the comments section below.

Fly Fishing Bream – Where and When To Catch Bream?

Fly Fishing Bream

So you want to start fly fishing for bream? First, I will explain what bream is, for you that don’t know. Bream are all the species of fish that are in the sunfish genealogy. Bream or ‘brim’ which is how the name is pronounced down south are known by many names such as redbelly, bluegill, perch, crappie, shellcrackers, redear, yellow belly, panfish, rock bass, pumpkin seeds, and others.

Fly fishing for bream is one of the most fun types of fly fishing an angler can partake in. There are so many different shapes and colors of bream fish which make it very enjoyable to fish for. These fish are plentiful in most of the bodies of freshwater in the United States and Canada.

The side of the road brooks, streams running through pastures, rivers, ponds, and lakes you name it you will find these fish everywhere. You know you will catch some fish when you set out to fish for bream.

Types of Flies Used To Catch Bream

There are many bream flies on the market, and they go by a bunch of different names. Here is a short list of some of the bream flies out there.

  • Fly Fishing Flies KitPredator
  • F-C Mackie Bug
  • Poppers
  • J’s Grinchworm
  • Carrot Nymph
  • Panfish Fly
  • Clouser Minnow
  • Wolly Worm
  • Sunfish Fly
  • SMP
  • Sponge Spider

That’s just a few of the most popular ones. There are many more out there in various names.

When and Where Can You Do Some Fly Fishing for Bream?

Flyfishing BreamLike I explained above bream can be found in numerous bodies of water all of this beautiful land of the United States and Canada. If you live near any body of fishable water, you will not have a hard time finding bream.

The best time to going searching for these fish is when they are spawning. They will tend to congregate around weed beds, fallen trees, around docks and drop-offs. Bream usually stay in more shallow water like under 6 feet.

You will want to cast your fly so that it lands about a foot or so from the areas I just mentioned and then you let the fly sit for a minute so that the sunfish can see it and then reel in slowly pausing now and then just working along the line your fishing.

If you do this repeatedly, you will no doubt catch bream after bream with this method. Nothings guaranteed but your chances of good strikes are overwhelming as long as the fish are there. And if you don’t get any strikes within a few minutes move on and try somewhere else because if the fish were there, they would be striking right away.

Reel In Those Bream!

BreamWhen you are fly fishing for bream in real shallow water like 3 feet you will want to use lighter flies because you will want to be skipping across the water. The best hook sizes to use are 10’s and 12’s you can also use size 8. These fish can be good little fighters sometimes and are always hungry. You can catch your limit in no time fly fishing for bream. It takes a lot of them to fill you up, but they taste oh so good

There are many different bream flies to use, and you will want to try different ones. Some of them you will want to ride above the water line and some of them you want to fish just below the water line letting them sink a little before reeling them in. Bream love that rainbow array of color the flies typical have on them. So don’t be afraid to experiment to get the right technique down and the right kind of bream flies to use in the process.

Another tip is if your fishing the shallow water under 3 feet you will want to use dry flies and poppers. You keep these above the water, and the bream will typically jump out of the water to slap at it. This is fun to watch even if you don’t catch the fish, but most of the time you will snag the bream!

Memories Will Be Made…

Once you get fly fishing for bream in your blood, you won’t turn back. I remember when I was young about 8 or 10 a neighborhood friend of mine and I lived near a little brook that was down the road from my house.

This brook was only about 2 feet deep in the deepest spot, and we would have a great time fly fishing for rock bass. We would catch our limit every day all summer long! Those are the memories I cherish that I will never forget.

The most important thing is this. Get out there and try your hand at fly fishing for bream and it will turn into a life long passion. Thanks for reading. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them in the comments section below. You can email me cory@tackleboxtalk.com

Northern Pike Ice Fishing Tips | 5 Tips To Bring Home The Pike

Northern Pike Ice Fishing Tips

So you are looking to fish the big northern pike? I have a few northern pike ice fishing tips you will want to consider before heading out to catch this monster of a fish through the ice.

Pike are fun to fish especially in the winter, and they will put up quite the struggle which is fun and exhausting at the same time. At least you will get some winter exercising in and a delicious meal to boot after you catch the pike.

I have compiled a list of 5 tips you will want to consider when fishing for northern pike. Now, this is not an exhaustive list, but it will get you in the right direction if you’re new to northern pike ice fishing.

Tip #1

Northern Pike love bait fish like tullibee and whitefish. These two species of fish are high in calories. Pike will follow these bait fish around so where ever the tullibee and whitefish are the Northern pike will not be far behind. So a good thing to know is where these baitfish are.

Tullibee and whitefish spawn early in the ice fishing season. They will be hanging around shallow areas of the lake close to drop-off areas and flats. So naturally, the pike will be in these shallow areas and easiest to catch, but the ice will be thin this time of year. Unless you want to risk life and limb, I would suggest waiting until later in the season. But that’s up to you!

In mid-winter, the northern pike will follow the tullibee and whitefish out to deeper parts of the lake. You will find pike close to deep water with soft bottoms. They will also feed on crappies and perch so try fishing in areas that you find these species of fish.

Tip #2

Check your local DNR websites for information on the lakes you want to ice fish for northern. You can get a lot of useful information from these sites like how much foliage a certain lake has. What types of species of fish are stocked in the lake?

Sometimes there are too many pike in a lake and not enough baitfish to help them grow too large sizes, so you get a lot of smaller pike. And some lakes won’t be stocked with northern at all so you will not want even to bother fishing those lakes if you’re after the northern pike.

Tip #3

Drill holes in various areas. You don’t need to drill a 100 holes but drill them in areas you know the pike will likely be. Such as along the drop off areas. A few holes can be drilled on top of the flats and along the break-lines. You can also drill some holes out in the deeper sections of the lake.

Once you get the wholes drilled you will want to continue down the line fishing those holes until you find an area that is ripe with northern and then stay on that spot. You could also mix it up with tip-ups so that you don’t have to move as around from hole to hole as often.

 

Tip #4

Tip number four in our line up of northern pike ice fishing tips is when you are jig fishing for pike. Keep the jig still for a while about 3 feet from the bottom of the lake and once in awhile wiggle the jig. This will give a northern who is debating whether to strike or not make his move and bite! You will also want to have a few different rigs set up before you go out ice fishing for these monsters.

Rig up a white tube skirt with jig head on it. Northern pike loves this type of rig lure because it jumps around like a worm gone insane and northern can’t resist the color of white in the winter because it can be seen so well under the ice.

When using a tip-up, I will place it in the shallower spots on the lake and then jig with my rod and reel combo in the deeper areas of the lake. Don’t stray far from your tip-ups because there are regulations the DNR have on how far you can be from your tip-ups.

Tip #5

For the last tip, I recommend what they call dead baiting. Dead baiting is what it says, Dead. You want to use dead baitfish and suspend it in the water. You can use any fish that a northern usually feeds on such as tullibee, whitefish, herring, eel, crappie. The smell and the non-movement of the bait attract northern pike like you wouldn’t believe. Have the bait frozen this makes it easier to place on the hook

You will want to cut slits in the sides of the dead bait so that the juices mix in the water and cause more of the attracting aroma for the pike to sniff out. Also, dead baiting is usually done using a tip up. A tip-up is used because you don’t want any abnormal movement from the bait. You will get too much movement with this method if you are holding a rod and reel. Dead fish don’t move!

Get Out The Ice For Pike

Ice fishing for northern pike is one of my favorite species of fish to go after. The big ones are smart and not easy to catch. But when you can wrestle one out of the hole and onto the ice above you get a sense of accomplishment and domination! You don’t need many of these monsters to fill your dinner plate.

I don’t know if it is just me, but I think pike tastes better in the Northern Pike

winter. Pike in the summer is not as fresh tasting which has to do with the warm temps. As a matter of fact, I think most fish tastes better when catching it under the ice.

I’m Free For Supper…

I hope these northern pike ice fishing tips help you catch a lunker this ice fishing season. If you catch enough, please give me a holler. I will be glad to come over and help you eat them up lol. I will even bring the electric fillet knife. Get out there and start pike fishing today.

If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below. I’m always happy to answer any question you may have. You can also email me direct cory@tackleboxtalk.com Happy Fishing, and I hope you catch that trophy you have been searching for!

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