150 fish caught on two consecutive days (40 + 110) on light jigs and at times under a float

SPOONMINNOW

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Joined
Oct 9, 2016
Messages
61
I'm sure many of you have had banner days when right place/right time allowed some record catches and we've all dreamt of being that lucky. And so it went Tues. and Wed.

In the northeast, we had a record amount of rain in a short time that raised water levels like crazy in all lakes and rivers. In the lake I fished yesterday, the lake was up 2.5 feet affecting the spawn locations of yellow perch - one of the first fish to spawn in spring. Where perch spawn, most fish follow to eat their eggs. I'm talking about four to five other fish species that are in dense, mixed-species schools in water no more than 3' deep. I'm talk'n crappie with perch and sunfish; white perch with crappie, yellow perch with crappy and a few bass in the same school.
wetland channel I had to row to get to schools of fish:
OHCwhZG.jpg

Granted, a child could catch fish-after-fish in that scenario, but one thing it allowed me to do is to discover and rediscover more things about lures - particularly about soft plastics on light ball head jigs. When fishing a wetlands shallow water pattern, it pays to work lures slowly, mid-depth. To do that 1/32, 1/64 and 1/24 oz jigs are a must along with hook sizes to match. A lure can be 3" on a 1/32 oz jig but the hook size/gap must be at least a #2 hook, like this example of a 5" plastic worm that caught all kinds of fish yesterday - many on the same lures:

perch, sunfish and bass caught on the same 4" plastic worm:
LwYhGB2.jpg D9SbiG1.jpgWqNRFXb.jpg

Float fishing isn't my forte and especially not in 3' of water, but when you find dense schools of very irritable fish, anything is possible. When I tried a small cigar float it opened doors as far as ultra-slow fishing using a rod pull & pause presentation!! Cool was seeing crappie attack the float once it plopped down, at times jumping out of the water! Many lures worked under the float and one that excelled over all others was the Mojo grub made from using clear plastic:
sg9O4Ii.jpgvEAUILT.jpg
Used under a cigar float:
FQn9oxD.jpgFQpjVVp.jpg
I've poured clear plastic shapes before, but the clear plastic Mojo - even in murky water - did as well as any color! The thin, straight tail flutters with the least motion imparted.
White perch on a clear plastic Mojo grub:
TCS9McH.jpg

Another find was the Chubby Grub made from cutting 2" off the front of a plastic worm (like the one shown above), blunting the end with a lighter: Nothing says, come & eat me like the wagging of a Chubby Grub rigged on a 1/32 oz jig!
UcvwixU.jpgnYnUFl7.jpgZh7sDa2.jpg

Having been a bass angler for years, I can understand staying with heavier lures. But light tackle fishing has a lot to be said for it - regardless of freshwater species.
 

jiggerjohn

Active member
Joined
Mar 23, 2010
Messages
533
Good work in searching out "new" waters,due to rising conditions of the rain ! And conquering the odd conditions with a shallow set float ! But, above all, it's so cool to see the dynamic effects of your CLEAR plastic mojo jigs, even in apparent off-color water!
 

Hawnjigs

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Mar 23, 2010
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Location
Ogallala, NE
Kudos for evaluating the effects of water level fluctuation and multi species spawn period behavior.

I agree that lightest possible jigs will stay in a strike zone longest, since slowest retrieve often will get bit better speshly in cold water.

Nice size yellow & white perch.
 

SPOONMINNOW

Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2016
Messages
61
Thanks HJ.
I must learn new things (or try to) on every outing to make it a success. Lure craft and tackle, in general, allow me to correct the misinformation I believed for years reading or watching shows spouting such, plus discovering new ways to improve my fishing experience. Tues and Wed. of last week taught me:
1. the potential of clear plastic lures (as if I didn't know that from years og catching bass on clear plastic surface lures like the Zara Spook and PopR.)
Clear soft plastic lures are like chameleons constantly changing color depending on light and background in the water, plus light is reflected from the upper surface and within the body's internal bottom surface for easy visualization by fish in moderately clear/colored water. Note the differences in the photos. It is a subtle color that goes beautifully with the small-float slow & subtle presentation.
2. small cigar floats with pegs top and bottom to fix the line length beneath the float, has zero line tangles above the float like experienced using light jig heads.
3. float fishing is a valuable presentation when used with jigs and certain lure designs such as the thin-tail Mojo. I used it to catch 40+ fish in 3.5' and will be able to do the same in deeper water when fish are found deeper.
4. the Chubby short stick had a great action: body quiver and wobble that caught fish after fish.
5. Thin 3" worms - of the tapered design shown - had a unique whip action that caught 5 fish species. In fact all lures used that day caught at least 5 species of fish.
Key was using a light jig - 1/32 oz, and #4 hook that enhanced the action. Any heavier jig and/or shorter or longer hook would not have allowed that lure action or the slow mid-depth presentation.

Everything indicated above was discovered by trial & error. The lessons learned will be added to my knowledge base and I encourage others to consider applying them in the waters they fish. JIggerjohn knows what I mean.
 
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