Five Things One Needs For Deep Sea Fishing

The best way to learn fishing in a deep sea is by serving an apprenticeship under experienced anglers. Most of the best anglers today have leant the tricks of this trade in this time-tested manner.

However, if you cannot find an experienced person, you can still learn the basics of catching fish from the salty waters deep in the sea. The Internet is an excellent source of information. The fact that you are reading this article in itself is a good indication. If you search further, you can find websites that provide comprehensive information about deep sea fishing as well as sell equipment required for it at competitive prices.

The following are some of the essential items one requires for successfully capturing fish from large seas.

Charter Service

For a majority of people, hiring a charter service is the most convenient and affordable way to engage in angling in a sea. It is especially advantageous for beginners. The crewmembers in most of the charters know the locations where fish are available in plenty. They might help in finding suitable baits or even offer tips about angling techniques.

Accessories

There is not much difference in the type of accessories required for deep sea fishing than from fresh water angling. However, the nature of accessories does change, as the fish in the seas are much bigger and stronger than those found in fresh waters.

The Main Accessories You Would Require Include The Following:

1. Rods
2. Reels
3. Belt and harness
4. Lures
5. Baits

Rods

Rods should be larger and sturdier than those used for fresh water angling. Rods of varying lengths are available. One should select a suitable rod based on one’s requirements.

Reels

A number of types of reels are available nowadays with all kinds of specifications. For beginners the best option is to purchase a simple no-frills reel and learn the technique of deep sea fishing first. One can opt for sophisticated reels when one becomes comfortable and confident in catching fish.

Belt And Harness

Belt and harness provide better options for the angler to control the rods. They also make the process of pulling up the catch easier.

Lures

One can find a variety of lures available. Beginners should try to get lures of different colors. One must be able to match the color of the lure with that of the bait.

Baits

Many experienced anglers say that baits are the most important thing in getting the kind of fish one is looking for. One may get the best accessories available; however, if the fish does not like the bait, they will not come nearby it. In short, a poorly chosen and badly maintained bait is more likely to spoil the trip than not.

There are no hard and fast rules in selecting suitable baits for deep sea fishing. One should first understand the kind of fish available in that particular area and then select baits based on that. One should do some research about the favorite food of the fish in that area.

What Are the Best Baits For Fishing? Live Baits

Anyone who spends time fishing is well aware of how effective live baits are when it comes to fishing for almost any species of fish. In this article I will explore some of the more popular and effective live baits that can be used for fishing. For the purposes of this article all of the baits being mentioned are for freshwater fish. Live baits are also productive for saltwater fishing, but that is an article for some other fisherman to write. Freshwater fish are my specialty and all of the live baits in this article are for use while fishing in freshwater fishing scenarios.

Below you will find a list of some of the baits that have worked well for me over the past two plus decades of fishing, along with some tips and tricks for putting these baits into action. One “tip” that seems obvious, but still needs to be mentioned is the fact that your bait always need to be as lively as possible when it is being used as bait. Dieing or partially dead live bait is all but useless when it comes to fishing. When it comes to live baits, the livelier the bait is the better.

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  1. Live Crayfish – Live crayfish are a very effective live bait, especially when it comes to large predatory fish like trout and bass. As a matter of fact, a live crayfish that’s about two inches long is one of the best baits for catching big trout of all time. The biggest issues with live crayfish are availability and the fact that they can be difficult to fish. Trial and error is key when it comes to fishing with live crayfish. The best way to find live crayfish is to find them yourself and store them in a minnow bucket. In any case live crayfish, when available, are one of the best baits that can be used for fishing.
  2. Live Night Crawlers – Anyone who fishes knows how effective live night crawlers are for almost any species of freshwater fish, yet many anglers don’t know how to rig them effectively. The proper way to rig a live nightcrawler for fishing is to pinch the worm in half and rig it on a set of gang hooks. This way your worm is outstretched (the way God and the fish prefer it), which means many more bites and hook ups. When it comes to live baits, live nightcrawlers are readily available and hard to beat.
  3. Live Bait Fish – The most popular bait fish is the minnow. In most area’s minnows are readily available and very effective as bait for fishing. Live minnows are excellent bait for species like Crappie, Smallmouth Bass, and Walleye to name just a few. Some fishermen like to rig live bait fish by hooking them through the back with a single hook and some like to use a gang hook rig (mentioned above). Both methods work, but the bottom line is that bait fish such as minnows are one of the best baits to use for fishing. One of the keys to success when using live bait fish is to not use fishing hooks that are too large, downsize your hooks and you will get more bites.

Are these the only live baits that can be used for fishing? Of course not, but they are among the most effective. If you use any of the preceding baits with regularity there is little doubt that one of them will become your own personal “favorite” bait for fishing.

Bass Fishing Tips – Is There a Best Bait For Bass?

Have you ever wondered if there is a “best bait” when it comes to bass fishing? In this article I’m going to list some of the more popular and effective baits used for bass fishing. These baits all catch bass and which one is best depends largely on personal preference.

I will also provide some bass fishing tips that will help you be more effective when using these bass baits. I know, I know, bass fishing tips are much like bellybuttons. Every body seems to have one, but with any luck some of the bass fishing tips in this article will work for you.

What do you say we get down to business and list these effective bass baits?

  1. Jitterbugs – One of the most popular top water bass lures of all time is the Jitterbug. The manufacturer of these wonderful top water bass baits also makes a jointed variety, which is also quite effective. The key to fishing a jitterbug, whether jointed or traditional, is to fish it very slowly in water that’s as flat as possible. When retrieving these bass baits you want to hear the melodic “gurgle” that these baits emit from the lip on the front.
  2. Live Bait – Live bait has always been considered a great bass fishing bait. Large shiners or shad are quite effective when fished under a float. I personally live to use slip bobbers as a float when fishing live shiners or shad for bass. Large baitfish (the size of your hand or a bit smaller) should be hooked right below the dorsal fin with a circle hook. Smaller baitfish should be hooked through the lips using a set of gang hooks. Both of these methods seem to be the best at keeping your live bait alive.
  3. Synthetic Worms/Grubs – Plastic worms have long been known as a great bait for bass, but the introduction of synthetic worms and grubs has changed the game a bit. Synthetic worms such as Berkley’s Gulp and Power Worms are extremely effective bass baits. This might be one of the best bass fishing tips that you get today. These bass baits have been impregnated with fish attracting scents, so ditch your soft plastics for their synthetic cousins.
  4. Realistic Shad Imitations – One of a basses favorite meals is a shad, so realistic shad imitations are a very effective bass bait. The key when using shad imitations is that they are as realistic as possible. You want your lure to look as much like a real shad as possible. I realize that this sounds obvious, but it nonetheless needs to be mentioned. All too often bass anglers try to save a few bucks on their bass lures and compromise realism without realizing it. Don’t skimp, especially when it comes to shad imitations.

Sea Bass Fishing If You Want to Catch More Fish, Learn To Think Like One

Yes, you can leave your fish catching success to chance, but if you want to catch more fish, you must learn how to think like the fish you are trying to catch. Consistent success and fishing enjoyment is more than just baiting up your hook, casting it out and waiting for the fish to bite. This one basic premise will improve your fish catching ability and will set you apart from the fishing novices. How do you think the fishing pros are able to consistently catch fish when other fishermen do nothing but drown their bait? They use the same fishing tackle, rods and reels, fishing lures and live bait as everyone else, but they always catch more fish.

You will catch more fish!

That little teaser should have caught your attention. However, learning how to put this technique into practice takes time, patience and persistence.

Let us start at the beginning. How do you learn to think like a fish? For starters, pick one of your favorite target fish species and begin to learn everything you can about that fish. It is important to understand things like, how it feeds, how it moves around each day, what are its migratory and breeding patterns, what kind of habitat it prefers, what type of fish or food source it feeds on, just to name a few. Also important to understand is how the current, tides and moon phases effect your target fish species’ activities and habits.

One way to start learning how to catch more fish, is to learn how to find your target fish species under any circumstances. Visit your local fishing tackle and bait stores. Get to know these people, because often they will have a broad knowledge of the fishing in that area. They can be a great source of fishing knowledge and how-to tips of not only learning where to fish, but also the why and how of locating fish. Instead of just asking them where the best fishing spots are, also ask questions about your targeted fish species. Try to learn what makes the fish tick, and what are it basics habits and tendencies. You will be amazed at how willing most of these folks are to share their expertise, especially if you are returning the favor and patronizing their store.

The next thing to do is to go fishing. Prepare yourself ahead of time with the proper fishing tackle, lures, bait and a notepad. Start in an area known to hold your targeted fish, and make notes about the current conditions; including, the date, time, wind direction and speed, temperature, tidal flow, water conditions and any other specific notes you feel like making. The most important thing is to start thinking like the fish you want to catch. Ask yourself, where would you be hiding and moving to. For example, if it is a real hot summer day, and the current is slack, and a low tide, the fish may not be up on the shallow flats. They may be looking for cooler water, so they may have moved to some deeper pot holes, or slid off a ridge or shallow bank and eased into deeper waters. Keep looking and when you find the fish, make more notes. The old saying that practice makes perfect is certainly true when it comes to catching more fish consistently.

To help you along, learn your local fishing waters and fishing grounds. Locate the ‘fishy’ areas and mark them on your GPS unit. If you do not have a GPS, then buy a nautical chart, or fishing chart. Locate shoreline points, eddys, potholes, sandbars, oyster bars, rock piles and submerged structures, and over time you will learn which places to go to depending upon the current conditions you are faced with, and that will make all the difference in your fishing world.

Learning how to think like a fish will make you a more complete and competent fisherman and angler, and will make your fishing outings with friends and family a lot more enjoyable.

Fish Taco Catering – Types of Fish Tacos That Make the Party

Should you grill, broil or batter a fish taco? Either can make an event go swimmingly. Smart taco caterers know the advantages of each preparation method.

According to Food & Wine magazine, almost any kind of seafood works in a taco.who handle all kinds of special requests – and are able to meet most of them. The fact is that tacos are exceptionally versatile food, where the main ingredient can be complemented by a broad variety of toppings.

So popular are seafood or fish tacos – so in demand by those seeking catering from everything to private parties, business events and even weddings.

As the magazine emphasizes, the milder fish tastes go better with milder toppings and those with a stronger seafood flavor will stand up better with spicier ingredients. For example, the white fish (snapper, tilapia, cod, etc.) go well with raw shredded cabbage while salmon, a bit stronger in taste, can do better with hot chili sauces, rubs and a little bit of charring on the grill. Farm-raised catfish or tilapia, valued for their sustainability, are particularly popular because they meld well with a broad variety of toppings and tastes.

But beyond taste there is texture. If hiring a taco cart catering company, insist on having a conversation about grilled, broiled and battered fish because the chef should know what event guests seem to prefer.

Grilling – Grilled fish will always win fans because, if done correctly, it will have the slight crispiness of the grill on the outside with the juices still inside. This happens when the taco catering chef will initially place the fish on the grill at high heat, which essentially singes the skin and effectively seals in the juices.

Broiling – Another preparation method is to broil the fish. Health advocates, which include many mobile taco catering company chefs, contend that broiling tends to be the most healthful way of getting the proteins and good fats of fish without adding unnecessary calories.

Battered – Yeah, yeah, yeah, we all know this adds some calories to the fish (or whichever ingredient one chooses to cover with flour, cornstarch, baking powder and salt, and sometimes beer). But it’s really hard to argue with the taste and texture of a crunchy outside combined with the tasty inside of battered fish. With salsa of some sort added and wrapped in a corn tortilla it’s a tasty taco without comparison.

Tilapia is among the more popular types of fish used in gourmet tacos, despite some negative social media chatter about the genus. While it’s true that farm-raised tilapia in many foreign countries are raised in unsavory conditions, American farm-raised tilapia is much more desirable because those conditions are monitored and better managed. The venerated Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Program and the Environmental Defense Fund’s Seafood Selector both deem tilapia farmed in the U.S., Canada and Ecuador as “best choices.” To be responsible to your guests, ask your taco caterers about the sources of all their foods.

Fish tacos are like that – there are many varieties, many methods of preparation, an infinite variety of toppings are available, and yet it makes sense to ask questions to make sure yours are made right for your crowd. You’ll probably provide alternatives – carne asada, jerk chicken and perhaps vegetarian soy/tofu selections. But the fish taco can be the star of the show when your guests discover how tasty this menu option can be.



Source by Michael Tosh

Koi Fish Color Meaning – An Introduction To Koi Symbolism

There is no person that can deny that Koi fish are beautiful. They provide a welcome addition to your landscaping and the beauty of the fish is determined by most, of their color. What you may not realize is that there is significant differences in Koi fish color meaning. Patterns also can help to determine the desirability of the fish. The color of the fish and the patterning and scale orientation do a lot to determine the value of the fish. The more color on the fish, the higher the price in most circumstances. Most of the fish have similar Koi fish color meanings. They vary from good relationships to wealth in one form or another.

While many people will choose the Koi on the Koi color meaning, there are those that choose the fish for only the beauty they may add to their Koi pond.

The Yamabuki Koi fish color meaning, or gold fish, is representative of prosperity and obviously, gold. Whether the owners of these beautiful gold fish are sending a message that they have achieved that wealth or are hoping the fish will bring a winning lottery ticket into their future is the mystery. It all depends on personal choice. Do not choose a Yamabuki that appears too yellow. This type of Koi may develop red spots on their heads. The gold/yellow Koi are popular with people with ponds that tend to be under filtered.

Ogon are gray/platinum colored and are also a representation of the fulfillment of wealth. This wealth is specifically achieved by success in business. This can be the hope for a successful business or success that has already been achieved. The ogon Koi is always metallic and easy to see in green or clear ponds. They are singular in color but always metallic. Choosing the color will depend on what Koi fish color meaning you are seeking or what you are desiring to add to your pond.

The mysterious and striking looking black and white fish is named the Kumonryu. This is the name of the dragon of transformation in Japan. The jet black resembles billowing clouds against a stark white sky. This scaleless variety of Koi changes pattern during the year. In the winter they are primarily black with the white appearing in the spring and summer.

Ochiba Koi are a light blue/gray color with highlights of copper, yellow or possible bronze. Some will say that they resemble autumn leaves floating on the water in your pond. The literal translation is “fallen leaves.” This is a very large Koi and ranges up to 27-29 inches in length.

Karasugoi are solid black. When you begin your shopping expedition for a karasugoi, be sure you choose one that is deep black and not gray. Examine the fish for bad scales or scars. Both of these will distract from the appearance of the Koi. The translation of karasugoi is “the crow” or black with no white.

Solid yellow, non-metallic, are called kigoi. The most valuable of the kigoi have very red eyes which gives them a rather eerie look.

Goshiki Koi are a crass of the taisho sonshoku and the asagi. This is theory and has not been firmly determined. They used to be included in with the kawarimono Koi. The consistency of recent production have earned them a label all their own. They have red markings similar to the Kohaku but not judged as strongly. There may be scales present on the red markings. Meshing will be strictly on the white.

Bekko Koi can be red, white or yellow. There are black markings on their body as well which add to their appeal. The literal translation of Bekko is tortoise shell. Again it must be said that colors vary and combinations can make the translations of Koi fish color meanings less distinct.

The Tancho is distinguished by a red patch on the head. They are not an independent form of Koi and can be bred from several varieties. Their patch will only appear in the region of the head and they cannot be produced in bulk. The most common are the all white with tancho. The tancho goshiki is a Koi of five colors that have a tancho. The contrast of the sparkling white makes the appearance of the tancho distinctive and will increase the value of the fish.

The Koi fish color meaning can be interpreted with the literal Japanese translation or you can take the initiative to label them with your choice of meanings that will suit your particular pond.



Source by Adam Boyle

How To Determine The Sex of Discus Fish

One of the biggest question asked of the discus breeder is “how do I determine the sex of my fish?” There are very few easy identifiable identifiers in this process. Here, we will discuss the methods used by some of the top breeders.

In juvenile fish, determining sex is almost impossible. It is only when they begin to pair off that an opportunity arises to help in the determination of sex. Juvenile fish, both male and female, have a rounded dorsal fin, and it is not until they begin to mature that a difference can be detected. As it is never wise to excessively handle the fish, close observation is in order to aid the breeder.

In Allnut Enterprises’ King Discus Hatchery, for example, it is an easy process to determine who is who, as we have observed these fish for a while, and can determine the sex of the pairs we own. This would be true in any hatchery. But to the uninitiated or casual observer, this would not be easy to do.

Some of the identifiers: The male will have thicker lips to aid him in his fight to protect the female, and will be more aggressive. He will be larger than the female, his forehead is thicker, and we have observed that if the discus are a bit shy, the male will have a tendency to stay between the female and the observer.

The dorsal fin of the male will be pointed, and the female’s dorsal fin will be rounded. Note that in juvenile discus, this is not apparent.

The breeding tube of the female, between the anus and anal fin, is broader and rounder than the male, and will have a blunt tip. The male, in turn, has a smaller, sharper breeding tube. Be aware that this is only evident during spawning, and should be closely observed.

It has been said that the male discus fish will tend to have a less intense color and more pattern while the female tends to be more colorful but with lesser pattern. I disagree, because too many variables are in place here, such as the health of the discus, the water parameters, and feeding pattern.

In an interesting article by Jeff Richard, [http://www.aquaworldnet.com/dbws/sexingdiscus.shtml] he discusses an article from Diskus Brief, a German publication, which reports a very successful way of determine sex of a discus by using simple geometry. Jeff reports, and I quote: “Picture a discus facing to your left … you would be looking at its side. Find the Dorsal (Top) and Anal (bottom) fins and look where the fins slope down toward the Caudal (tail) fin … make sure you’re looking at the fins after they have curved back toward the tail. The Dorsal and Anal Fins become (almost) straight after the fins curve down (or up) toward the Caudal Fin … extend an imaginary line along this straight section of the 2 fins back toward the tail which just touches the Dorsal & Anal Fins past the Caudal Fin. These two imaginary lines should intersect behind the fish. The key to sexing the fish is where the lines cross the Caudal fin. If they pass through the Caudal Fin, the fish is most likely a FEMALE. If they miss or just touch the Caudal Fin, then most likely it is a MALE.” Thanks, Jeff!

Sexing Discus is difficult at best. The easiest way to do so is to raise a group of at least six to eight discus, and allow them to pair off when ready. It is a beautiful sight to see this happen, and makes the hobby well worthwhile.



Source by Alden Smith

Reviving Billfish – Tips You Need to Know When Releasing Sailfish, Swordfish, and Marlin

Last summer we had an unfortunate incident with a swordfish we brought to the boat.

It was about 8:30pm and we had been set up for about 45minutes when we had our first bite, the second balloon at 150′ baited with a dead squid started to scream. My brother Rocky was on the rod and the instant he pushed the drag up to strike, which on our rods is set at 25-30lbs of drag, the fish stopped and Rocky cranked the fish in effortlessly. Less then five minutes later we had a small swordfish boat side. We couldn’t see the hook and since this fish was brought to the boat so quickly we didn’t want to put this green fish through any trauma.

Rocky handed me the pliers and I clipped the leader as close to the swordfish’s mouth as possible. The swordfish kicked away and seemed to be fine, then less then a minute later on the other side of the boat we spotted the swordfish belly up. We pulled in the drift anchor and moved the boat to the swordfish. Rocky grabbed its bill and brought it along boat side. I put one engine in gear and Rocky held the fish’s bill underwater in the hopes of reviving this small swordfish. After a minute or so of attempted reviving, the swordfish just became even more copper colored, stiff and lifeless. We realized there was no hope of reviving this fish so we brought him in the boat. Once he was in the boat we inspected the fish and the hook which we decided to cut was just a little bit inside the corner of its mouth and not bleeding what so ever. Since this fish was brought to the boat in minutes and received no trauma from the fight or from us upon release made us believe that this fish must have had heart failure.

Incidents like this are rare, especially when the fight time is kept to a minimum. But, they do happen and it reminds us that even though we are conservation minded and try to practice good catch and release, there is always a chance that a caught fish will not survive after being released.

There are many things we as fisherman can do to try and ensure a healthy release for any billfish we catch. For one, whenever we get a green billfish to the boat which we are planning on releasing simply cut the leader as close to the fishes mouth as possible and as quickly as possible. Holding any large billfish along boat side is one of the most dangerous things we can do in the sport of fishing. When a mate leans over the gunwale to hold a boated billfish, especially on a boat with high freeboard, he or she can seriously injure themselves and the fish. Billfish struggling along boat side often damage their eyes, bills and gills banging against the side of the boat. This is why simply cutting the leader as close to the fish’s mouth, is much safer for the fish and the people on board.

Any attempt to remove the hook from a billfish can do much more harm then good to the fish. Poor attempts to remove the hook from a struggling fish can cause sever bleeding and bruising to the fish. So, unless you have a smaller billfish at the boat and you can clearly see that de-hooking the fish will be an easy task due to where the hook is placed, simply cut the leader as close to the fish’s mouth as possible, it will have a much better chance of survival.

In the event you try and de-hook a smaller billfish, attempt to de-hook the fish while its head is underwater. Once a billfish’s head is above water it will violently thrash its head.

When you are about to release a billfish if it’s not struggling to get away, is not lit up and has a copper color, grab the fish’s bill holding the bill and the fish’s head under water then put the boat in gear so water will run through the fish’s gills. Once the fish starts to kick on its own or starts to struggle, gently let go of the bill and let it swim free.

Never consider a billfish dead, always try to revive the fish as it may just be exhausted from a long battle or unconscious from lack of water (oxygen) running through its gills.

TightLines,



Source by Vinnie LaSorsa

Koi Fish, Cherry Blossom and Lotus Flower Tattoos – The Full Story on Japanese Designs For Women

Just about any style Japanese tattoo seems to currently be hot. Tattooing trends sure change from year to year and in the past few years that has been a real rise in the popularity of Japanese tattoos. Along with the rise of tattoos for women these seem to be two of the biggest trends in the market and two trends that are starting to combine. There are many women, girls and females out there that are getting some pretty pink Japanese tattoo designs inked on themselves including big Japanese sleeve tattoos, large back pieces and even more delicate and cute leg, hip and rib designs. So what do these designs mean and what is the symbolism behind them anyway?

While the symbolism behind any tattoo is not a hard or fast science that the symbol always means just one thing there are some common understandings that can be used. Symbols mean different things at different times and to different people. So what once was a symbol of something that is bad might now be worn as a badge of courage and so on. However these are some of the more common Japanese tattoo meaning for popular designs that women would be most interested in.

Koi Fish Tattoos Symbolism

Koi fish have been a very deep part of the Japanese psyche for thousands of years. Even today there is hardly a temple that does not have a small koi pond filled with these majestic fish. The original lore probably came from China but has been handed down for so many thousands of years that Japanese now believe that it is always been there own. Anyway the koi fish is believe to be a powerful, strong and independent fish. The story goes that this fish swims up stream against the current (thus is why there are often drawing splashing) and if they are strong enough and have enough power they eventually reach the highest gate and once they pass through it they become a dragon and fly up powerfully into the sky.

The symbolism for most Japanese is one of strength, power and being true to one self. This is something that works well with many women today who want to strike out on their own and feel their own power and independence.

Cherry Blossom Tattoos

The cherry blossom has always been a very deeply symbolic and important flower for the Japanese also. In fact it is probably one of the most important symbols within the culture. The samurai warriors used to write poems and dedicated works of art to capturing the essence of the cherry blossom. In fact in many ways the samurai thought of the cherry blossom as a symbolic of their own life. The cherry blossom comes out early in the year when it is cold. It is very beautiful but also short lived and will soon fall from the tree. So the samurai also believe and felt about their lives they has to live there life everyday like it was their last without any fear of death. Thus many have heard the popular saying that a samurai would wake up in the morning and say to himself quietly today is a good day to die. This was not meant as a death with but as a life wish to live life to the fullest. This has carried into the symbolism of tattooing also and is equally popular along with the koi fish design.

Lotus Flower Tattoos

Another popular symbol in Japan and actually throughout Asian is the lotus flower. Religiously speaking the lotus flower held great significance historically in India. The power, symbolism and influence of this flower travelled to Asian along with the religious system known as Buddhism. Many believe that the lotus flower best represents the journey of life. The flower starts as a delicate bud down in the bottom muddy part of the water. It slowly pushes to the surface reaching for the sun and then once it hits the top is blossoms into a beautiful flower. This has been symbolic of the journey that every person must go through as they gain enlightenment. Thus you will often see lotus flowers in many religious art works but also it has become a very popular symbol for living life to it’s fullest and striving.



Source by Chris Ryerson

Pairing Fish And Fruits

Fish and fruit are two of the healthiest food groups you can choose from but many people do not think of pairing the two to create an array of interesting and tasty dishes. Fruits are naturally sweet, tangy, and juicy and lend texture, flavor, and interest to all types of seafood salads.

Although you should use your favorite types of fish, white fish is always a good choice as it is mild and does not have that “fishy” taste that many are not fond of. Grilled white fish tastes wonderful with a mixture of mangos, peaches, and honey and grilling the fish helps to lock in the flavor and create a delicious crust. Alternatively, you can also create a fruit salsa to serve along with several different types of fish including salmon steaks.

To make the fruit salsa, combine diced pineapples, mangos, with lemon and lime juice and other assorted fresh fruits like kiwi or strawberries and serve with salmon steaks, sea bass, cod fillets, or other white fish.

You can also quickly make Hawaiian style tacos with mild white fish and tortillas. Bake the fish after sprinkling with lemon and lime juices and seasoning with salt and pepper. Make the taco filling with pineapples, mangos, cilantro, and shredded lettuce then combine with the baked fish after slicing it into strips.

You might also enjoy a simple fruit and fish salad plate with cooked crab, prawns, salmon, or shrimp, or perhaps a selection of each, along with fresh peaches and salad greens.

Mix mayonnaise and sour cream with lemon juice, ground ginger, salt, and white pepper then stir in finely chopped celery and green onions and peppers. Toss all the ingredients to mix well and refrigerate for a few hours to chill before serving.

Do not be afraid to experiment with the different types of fish and fruits you use as there are endless delicious combinations to discover. You can prepare the fish using your preferred cooking method. Fruits in the melon family like honeydew, cantaloupe, and watermelon offer plenty of sweetness and mix well with many other types of foods.

For a spicy kick to your fruity fish dish, use peppers including poblanos and jalapenos along with various seasonings.

Fruity Tuna Salad Recipe

What You Need

  • 4 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon dry mustard
  • Dash white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 6 ounce can white tuna, drained
  • 1/2 cup celery, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons sliced green onion
  • 1 cup cantaloupe melon, cut into cubes
  • 1 cup honeydew melon, cut into cubes
  • 1 cup red grapes
  • 1 cup Granny Smith apple, chopped
  • 1 head lettuce

How to Make It

In a small mixing bowl, combine the white wine vinegar, olive oil, sugar, salt, dry mustard, white pepper, and lemon juice and stir to mix well.

In a medium sized mixing bowl combine the rest of the ingredients and then toss with the prepared dressing.

Cover and chill the salad mixture for 1 hour.

Place leaves of lettuce on 4 plates and top each with the fruity tuna salad and serve immediately.

Serves 4.



Source by Christine Szalay-Kudra

Keeping Dinosaur Eels (Bichirs) In Tropical Freshwater Fish Tanks or Aquariums

Dinosaur eel

The dinosaur eel is the common name for the Grey Bichir, Polypterus Senegalus, though it is a fish and not an eel. There are more than a dozen species of this fish but the Grey Bichir or Senegalus Bichir is the most common and is popular among aquarists. This Bichir is covered in dark grey horizontal bands that become paler as the fish grows. Some Bichirs can reach over three feet in length, although most species, including the Senegalus Bichir, grow to around one foot.

Natural habitat

In their native habitat they can be found in lakes, rivers, floodplains and swamps in Africa, especially the Congo River and Nile. They are capable of surviving in waters with low oxygen content and can move in search of food or to find other wet areas in their home dries in time of drought.

Characteristic features

The misnomer of dinosaur eel (hereafter referred to as Bichir) comes from the prehistoric appearance of this elongated fish. Its snake-shaped body is covered by thick, bone-like scales made of an enamel-like substance called ganoine, which resembles the now extinct earliest ray-finned fishes. It has a distinctive series of up to 18 dorsal finlets, each one with a sharp spine, which are erected when it is agitated. The fleshly pectoral fins, which control the slow movement of the fish, are attached behind and below the gill openings. It is also able to travel over land using its strong pelvic fins. Bichirs can also breathe air via a lung-like modification to their swim bladder. Other characteristics include a pair of blowholes, a long lower jaw and external nostrils which protrude from the nose to enable the Bichir to hunt by smell since its eyesight is poor. Females tend to be larger than males, while adult males have thicker dorsal spines and broader anal fins.

Diet

Bichirs are predatory and essentially carnivorous and will attack and feed on small fish that are easy to swallow as well as slow-moving fish. They will also eat insects, crustaceans and frogs. Since they are nocturnal they will feed mainly at night.

Breeding

After a series of energetic twisting movements, the male Bichir fertilizes the eggs by enveloping the female’s genital opening with his anal and caudal fin. He then scatters the eggs using thrashing movements of his tail. It is difficult, however, to get Bichirs to breed in captivity. Some aquarists have noted that even if a male and female are present, the male is often unresponsive and will not fertilize the eggs the female releases.

Aquarium size

Due to the length Bichirs grow and their need to breathe air, it is important they are housed in long tank aquariums that are not too deep, possibly even a fish tank table. Aim for an aquarium that is at least three times the adult size of the Bichir you have or plan to purchase. Choose fish tank aquariums that are no more than eighteen inches deep and do not fill completely with water. This is important as Bichirs need to be able to breathe from the air and therefore have to be able to swim quickly to the surface and back to the bottom where they dwell.

Being able to use oxygen from the air enables Bichirs to survive out of water for several hours. Given this and the fact that they have the instinct to move out of one place in search of food in another, it is recommended to have a tight-fitting lid on your aquarium!

Aquarium decor

A thin layer of soft sand or gravel is fine as substrate. Bichirs also like hiding places, especially as they prefer to stay out of the light during the day. So it is much more enjoyable for them to have robust plants, rocks and tunnels which allow them to display more natural behaviours. Plants attached to wood work best as Bichirs tend to displace plants rooted in the substrate because of their size and when searching for food.

Water conditions

As they are tropical freshwater fish, Bichirs require a temperature of 75-85 F. They like a pH of 7 or slightly below and prefer water that is a little hard. Of course, it is important to perform frequent water changes to ensure the quality of water is good in your tropical freshwater aquariums.

Aquarium lighting

Bichirs are nocturnal so they will be typically lethargic during the day and active at night. Rather than switching the aquarium lights off complete, provide the semblance of a natural nightfall by installing a blue moonlight bulb so you too can experience some action from your Bichir!

Feeding

Being carnivorous, Bichirs love to be fed baitfish, mussels, shrimps and bloodworms. They will also readily accept frozen foods. Some aquarists have tried to encourage them to take dry foods by only supplying them until their hunger overcomes them, and have found they can adapt OK. However, I would mention that this is not their natural diet.

Tank mates

Given the large size of Bichirs and their predatory nature, it is extremely important to match them with suitable tank mates. Do not keep them with fish smaller than three inches which can provide a ready meal! It is better to match Bichirs with bigger fish as they will not bother as much with fish they cannot swallow. Siamese Tigerfish, Angelfish, large Barbs, Cichlids and Knifefish are possible tank mates. It has been observed that suckermouth Catfish tend to suck on the skin of Bichirs which irritates them and so it is not advised to keep both types of bottom-dwelling fish. Also avoid matching them with overly aggressive species. In a very large fish tank it will be possible to keep several Bichirs together, provided they are around the same size. They should generally tolerate each other, apart from fighting over the food!

To keep or not to keep?

Bichirs are interesting specimen fish but do be aware of all the issues involved in keeping them, especially the size of the tank and the other tropical freshwater fish you have or plan to have. Bichirs also cost more to keep than other fish, though they are a very hardy breed. Keeping Bichirs in a suitable environment requires careful planning!



Source by Jill Kaestner

Humminbird Portable Fish Finder Review of the 110, 120, 130 and 140 Fishin’ Buddy Models

The Humminbird portable fish finder Fishin’ Buddy series currently has several models for purchase. They include, in ascending price, the Hummingbird 110, 120, 130 and 140 model units. As the model number and subsequent price increases, there are subsequent additional features that the lower models lack.

All models, except for the 110, have both a single beam down and side sonar at 240 feet and 120 feet, respectively. All have the same power output at 125 watts RMS (roots mean square) and 1,000 watts, peak to peak. They all have a built in temperature gauge, are waterproof, have a backlight, mount with a portable clamp, have a target separation of 2.5 inches and run on 6 AA batteries. Now let us discuss the differences between all 4 models.

The Humminbird 110 Fishin’ Buddy is the most basic unit of the series at an entry level price. The current manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) is $119.99. For just under $120 you will have a portable fish finder that will find fish, but not have all the bells and whistles of the more advanced models. Most anglers looking for a cheap fish finder will be completely satisfied with this unit.

Up one level from the 110 model is the Humminbird 120 fishfinder with a MRSP of $169.99. So for fifty dollars more, what do you get? You get a higher resolution screen, 8-level grayscale instead of only 4-level and side sonar in addition to the single beam down. Is the screen resolution and added grayscale worth another fifty bucks? Perhaps not, but the side sonar is definitely an added bonus.

Next in line is the Humminbird 130 portable fish finder with a MSRP of $219.99. What do you get for yet another fifty bucks? An even higher resolution screen, 16-level vs 8-level grayscale and a 24-40 inch telescoping transducer pole as opposed to the 24 inch fixed pole on the two previous lower models. The transducer extension will be especially helpful for those who plan to use their fish finder on different sized boats, canoes or float tubes.

Then there is the top of the line, the deluxe Humminbird 140 Fishin’ Buddy with a MSRP of $269.99. For yet another fifty dollars you can have a color screen. Everything else on this unit is the same as the 130 model. Most users say the black and white screen works well enough for them, but for those of you who really want the added contrast of a color screen, than you may want to consider this unit. The color screen will help to distinguish between vegetation types, fish schools and individual fish.

For a portable fish finder, Humminbird does offer a pretty good deal with this series no matter which unit you choose. There are other brands to consider such as Norcross Hawkeye F33P, the Garmin 140 or 300c and even the Humminbird Piranhamax 230 portable fish finder. It depends upon which features are important to you and what you are willing to spend. Whatever model you choose, having a portable unit will now allow you to find fish wherever you want to go.



Source by Taylor Turnstone

Cheerios For Fish Food – How to Feed Fish

What is the best fish food for your pets and or for your tropical showcases of salt water fish? Everyone has a different opinion about this one. But some have chosen their fish food merely by what the pet store tells them. That really limits you and limits your fish. If you are looking to grow, large, healthy, creative and unusually happy fish, then you need to go one step above what the fish guy tells you.

First you decide the purpose for your fish, the reason why you purchased them or obtained them other ways and then after you figure out your purpose, you can then figure out the proper food for them. Do you want regular, tiny fish swimming in the tank, run of the mill fish? Or do you want prize fish, fish that look a little bigger, fish that are a little more happier? Do you want to see your fish run to the top of the tank to get their old, dried fish food or do you want them to eat more like they eat out in nature, in the wild, by hunting for their own food, and getting that exercise that this hunting gives to them?

If you want the more natural feeding, then you would choose , live food. Next step below that would be frozen food that was once live and last but not least, is that dried food or flake food that comes in those round cylinders.

Here are things to consider when buying fish food:

1. Are your fish bottom feeders or top feeders? Bottom feeders might enjoy food that will drop to the bottom and or float-either way. Buy some Tubifex live worms. The pet store guy will have these in the refrigerator there. They look like brownish, reddish messy ball of tiny string worms. They smell horribly but I gather the fish love this. If you drop a small ball in the tank your fish will scurry up to get them immediately.

2. If you have salt water fish or tropical fish, you might want to try live brine shrimp as their meals. Of course you can supplement any fish meals with dried or flake food also.

You can purchase brand name food or no-frills food and your fish will survive just as well. So , how do I know this? I was raising some feeding fish once, and I ran out of fish food. So I crushed some Cheerios between my fingers and I fed the fish that food. They loved it, thrived on it so I never went back to using regular fish food. These fish grew big, from tiny little feeding fish. So my Cheerios were successful. Do not try anything that I write about as this was my own experience and I cannot guarantee it works for you or your particular kind of fish. IF you were going to experiment with this, you might begin by using your regular fish food and supplementing with Cheerios. That is just a thought, not a suggestion or instruction. Good luck!

If you have a fish that has a good possibility to grow larger and you want a large fish, you can begin feeding that fish tubifex and graduate to real earthworms as the fish gets larger. You can have one astronautis oscellatus in your tank, that you purchased when he was about half-inch long, and by feeding and raising this fish properly, you can grow this same fish to be one or two feet big. Amazing growth for an amazing fish. We had one like this and fed huge, large earthworms to him. The original fish cost us under two dollars and grew to be quite a monster.

Remember when you are buying a fish, sometimes you will pay next to nothing for the fish itself. What brings the real expense to the hobby of raising fish is the feeding, housing, filtering of water and the decorative aspects of displaying the fish and tank. Hope this article helped you. Read my other articles that will be published in the near future about fish food, feeding fish, raising guppies, and more specific articles about specific fish and fish-related hobbies. The author has raised fish in the past, and has had experience raising and caring for many different kinds of animals throughout the years of her life. Any and all questions, comments and remarks are greatly appreciated.

I write from the heart about many subjects, and the experience that I write about is from life. If you read any pet articles here on my webpage, most times, I have had those pets, raised them or watched the pets for other people.



Source by Linda A. Perry

Secrets of the Chesapeake Bay Revealed

The Upper Chesapeake Bay has been receiving a lot of notoriety over the last few years due to the improved catch rates and overall weight increases reported in the tournaments. While the true river rats have known of this bass fishing hotbed for some time now, the recent success is attracting clubs from all over Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and even as far away as New York. Most of this pressure has converged on the Elk River, and the Tyding’s Park area in Havre de Grace, Md., since these areas provide more than adequate launching and parking facilities that are necessary to hold the tournaments. Many of the smaller club tournaments also start from the Northeast and Elk River areas. With this influx of angling pressure, many of the traditional hot spots have become increasingly crowded during the weekends, and have forced anglers to make longer and longer runs in search of untapped bass waters. Many of these anglers have now discovered that the 20-30 minute drive through sometimes rough and unsafe water, to the Sassafras River, has been well worth the effort.

Ramp and Launching Locations

The following locations and patterns, have not only produced tournament winning limits, but have produced over 100 bass in the 5-6 pound range, over the last 5 years, from this river. These are true “Trophy” bass for a Northeastern River system.

The Elk River, via Elk Neck State Park, is probably the most popular, due to it’s more than adequate parking facilities, and close proximity to the Sassafras. This is only a 10-15 minute drive from the Sassafras.

Tyding’s Park and Marina, located In Havre De Grace, Md., is the farthest, and most difficult drive to access the Sassafras River. We launch from this area only when we have located good numbers of bass on the Susquehanna Flats or in the nearby coves or docks of the Northeast. The drive from here can be dangerous in the early morning fog and heavy boat wakes in the Spring and Summer. At 55 mph, it takes about 25 minutes to reach the first starting point on the Sassafras. The best area to launch in the Sassafras is in Duffy Creek, located right behind the Granary Restaurant, on Sassafras Street, in the town of Galena. This is a private marina, with average parking facilities, and a good ramp. It is a pay per use facility, and charges a daily fee of $5.00.

The second area to launch is the public boat ramp on Sassafras Street, right before the restaurant. This is a small boat only ramp, but it is adequate for launching most any bass boat at the proper tide. In low tide situations, this can be a tricky ramp, so great care should be taken during these times, as it is extremely shallow, and has ruined many a boat prop and hull. The next spot you can launch is a “permit only” ramp located in Turner’s Creek. This area has the most parking, and offers a middle of the river launch site.

When and Where To Go – Turner’s Creek

Although the Sassafras offers excellent fishing all times of the year except the winter, the Early Spring is the best time to start. Spring on the Sassafras is similar to any other body of water, in the respect that the bass’s life revolves entirely around the spawning process, and the locating of spawning areas. The Sassafras normally hold bass in almost every area of the river, but at this time of year, it suddenly shrinks to a few, and eventually, two major creeks.

In the early pre-spawn, largemouth can found in the emerging grasses and the wood cover, in locations such as Hall’s Creek, Freeman, McGill, Turner, DuPont, and Lloyd’s. As the spawn gets even closer, they make their way to Turner’s and Lloyd’s almost exclusively.

Turner’s Creek offers a huge amount of diverse cover for bass. There is a narrow entrance to this creek where the main river channel runs right along a wood laden bank with a steep drop-off. Pre-spawn bass lay along this drop at depths from 2-18 feet, all of which is loaded with laydowns and emerging vegetation. Directly next to the entrance is a small bay loaded with lily pads and several varieties of emerging grasses, on a slow tapering bank, that eventually levels off into the main river channel. This area at the entrance to Turner’s Creek, is one of the 2 major staging areas for largemouth in the Sassafras. The Western shoreline of this creek is totally covered with what are emerging lily pad root systems, that are mixed in with several varieties of vegetation, including Milfoil and Hydrilla. Many bass choose these root systems to spawn. The Eastern shoreline offers a hard sand and rock bottom, along with vegetation, that mixes in with a number of large boat docks. The bass use the docks, and standing and decaying pilings to hold on, and eventually make their beds on, to escape the current and predators which are prevalent in the river.

Lure Selections and Strategy

When targeting pre-spawn bass at the entrance of the creek, spinner baits are our weapon of choice. Terminator spinnerbaits in the 3/8 and ½ ounce sizes, with tandem blades are top producers in these areas. “Spotsticker” Custom spinnerbaits, along with “Tru-Tungsten’s” series, and B&D lures, Evilution V spinner bait also take their fair share of bass in this area in the spring. Color is not that important this time of year in the stained to muddy water, but we have had the best success with baits that imitate the shad, in white/chartreuse, and in “Golden Shiner” patterns. If the water is truly “muddy”, then we will use a darker skirt many times.

When we are looking for that one particular big bite, to upgrade our limit, the baits we use are “Senko’s” and “Bearpaws Handpoured Baits”. These are similar to Senko’s in size and appearance, but have a different manufacturing process which bakes in scents, and are a little tougher, so they last longer when the bass are aggressive. These baits also produce all sizes of bass better when a cold front moves through, and causes the action to slow down. When a severe cold front blows through over a few days, it will cause the bass to drop down to deeper water in the 10 foot range, and hold on the tops of trees. When this happens, we target them with mid range crank baits, using a stop and go retrieve, with great success. Once the bass move to the backs of the creek to spawn, “Senko’s”, “Bearpaws”, “IKA” tubes, “Sizmic” flu-go’s, lizards, and Terminator jigs, flipped into the docks, grass, and pads, produce a good limit in short order.

On the weekends in the spring, this area can be crowded with many other anglers, and small to midsize crank baits, such as a “Mann’s” Mid-Minus, and a “Lucky Craft” series, can be a great tool in addition to the spinner baits and plastics. Don’t hesitate to throw a buzz bait around the same cover, once the water temperature warms to 55 degrees or above. This can produce some real hawgs at this time of the year. We like to use a custom type clacker buzz bait made for us by “Charon” Custom Lures. We also have great success with the “Terminator” Ball-Buster.The old standby, the black and blue Terminator jig, with pork or plastic for a trailer, placed in and around pilings, ladders on docks, and floating piers, will always produce good sized bass. Most anglers use the jig when fishing docks, but switch to other baits many times in the laydowns. This can be a mistake, as many times in the spring, we caught several bass in the 5 and 6 pound class, flipping the wood in Turner’s Creek with this jig. Turner’s Creek is a hot spot at all times of the year, but it is especially productive in the spring. An experienced angler can expect 10-15 bass on a good day from this creek alone. Although at times, other creeks can produce more bass, this creek gives up he better quality bass on a consistent basis. Our largest bass from this creek was 6.4 pounds, but we have heard of 7 pound bass being caught on occasion.

Lloyd’s Creek

This is the most productive spring spot on the Sassafras River, and in our opinion, on the entire Upper Chesapeake Bay. While largemouth bass spawn in several creeks along the river, the majority of them choose Lloyd’s Creek. While there is a very strong current at the entrance to Lloyd’s Creek, the rest of it has very little movement.

The shoreline, for the most part, is very shallow in Lloyd’s, but offers some mid depths to 6 feet just off shore. The entire creek is loaded with cover. This includes laydowns, logjams, and a variety of grasses, and an old barge. The barge, grasses, and seawalls in Lloyd’s are the most productive areas. The bass love to hold on these pieces of cover, and when combined with the hard sand bottom and rocks, it makes for an ideal habitat for a tidal spawning ground.

Besides the ideal cover, bottom composition, and sun exposure, Lloyd’s offers something else that makes it an ideal spawning ground for tidal bass. It has a clear and defined channel leading into the creek, and into all points along the shoreline. This provides a virtual “Freeway” for the bass to follow. This makes the job of targeting these bass under changing water conditions and seasons fairly simple. I believe that this is the reason that not only huge numbers of bass in the Sassafras come here, but I believe they come from other nearby rivers as well, and possibly even from farther away.

In the early spring, bass will begin to stack up at the entrance to Lloyd’s Creek in amazing numbers. The water is fast here, and goes from 16 feet in the main channel, to as shallow as 1 foot on the shore. This steep drop-off runs from about 300 yards from the entrance in the fast moving water, to about 50 yards into the creek, and stops at a large dock. The whole shore on this side is loaded with old trees, brush, and rocks. On the opposite side a huge peninsula comes across forming a perfect sand point 20 yards from the steep shore. That 20 yard space Is the entrance to Lloyd’s Creek. This is why the current rips through this area at an unbelievable pace. Even a trolling motor of 24 volts, can barely hold position on its highest setting in this area. The bass congregate all around this sand point and the adjoining areas.

The best baits for this area are Rat-L-Traps in blue/chrome, in 3/8 and ½ ounce sizes, Terminator and Spotsticker spinner baits in ½ ounce, with Tandem, and/or willow leaf blades, and small crank baits. About 10 yards from the tip of the point, the current swirls to form a large eddy. Many times 15-20 bass in the 1 ½ to 3 pound range can be caught on successive casts to this eddy. The other tactic is to cast your bait right up on the sand point, and then pull it into the fast moving water, and the bass just slam the bait as it enters, many times on every other cast for an hour or more. On the opposite shore, the bass bunch up on the wood, as it is the only thing blocking the current. At slack tides these bass will slam the same reaction baits as on the point, however, when the current is swift here; the best thing to do is flip heavier jigs and plastics into the wood. The reason we like the “Terminator” jigs for this and other types of cover, is the eye is recessed into the head, preventing the jig from becoming snagged at least 75 % less than other jigs. With the nasty cover in this area it is a necessity.

When this area starts to become pressured by other anglers, we have switched to an “IKA” tube, with a 3/8 ounce Tungsten weight, with great success. We flip these baits to the up current side of cover and let the tide wash the bait past the object. Most strikes come as soon as the bait washes past where the bass are holding. Watching your line is a must her, as the current makes most strikes difficult, if not impossible to detect. The only plus side to this is that because if the amount of energy these bass have to expend to fight the current, they almost never miss the bait once they commit. Heavy line with high abrasion qualities is a must here.

The next spot is the dock where the river channel stops and makes a sharp right turn towards the back of the creek. The best areas of the dock are the first 3 pilings from the rocks out. Jigs, tubes, and weighted plastics take numerous bass in the 2-5 pound range from here.

These three spots form the ultimate staging area. More bass will move into this spot almost as fast as you can catch them at times. These bass are also extremely aggressive. The best tip for this area is to get there early in the year. You will not only avoid the crowds, but encounter some of the larger pre-spawn females.

When the Spring is in full swing, the bass will follow the creek channel to the barges, pilings, and laydowns in the back of the creek. This is when large numbers of 1-3 pound males make their way to the staging areas. There is a 2-3 week period when these bass will attack almost anything that hit’s the water. This is when it is wise to hit the entrance for a quick 10 pound limit, and then move back to the sunken barge for the larger females. Weightless Senko’s, Bearpaws, and IKA tubes with a pegged weight, produce heavyweight females when pitched to the grassy edges of the barge. A quickly retrieved spinner bait is needed at times to pick the males off the edges of the barge before going after the larger females with plastics. Laydowns will also produce as well as sections of the sand bar now. Slow down and cover the whole area to be rewarded with a huge sack of bass.

When the spawns has run its course, just follow the same creek channel back out to the same areas where the fish staged in pre-spawn. Similar to early in the year, the larger fish will be the first back out also. This is plastics time! The fish are fairly sluggish now, so a little more finesse is required. They want an easy meal, and soft plastics like these fit the bill!

As the smaller bass make their way out to the mouth of Lloyd’s, you will see bas hitting the spinner baits and crank baits again. While the following migration routes to success can be simple, there are a few tricks that can help you upgrade your limit. In the middle of the spawn, anglers will crowd around the to spots we have mentioned. Some of these anglers will be targeting the shallow fish spawning, and others will be pounding the pre or post spawn bass at the current washed mouth of Lloyd’s Creek. At this time, we use our depth finder to locate and follow the creek channel from the staging area back towards the spawning area, looking for bends, humps, and even weedlines that run on the edge of the channel. Sometimes we mark fish on the locator, but the structure is all we are really looking for.

We drop the trolling motor and begin dragging a Carolina rig with a 3 inch “Senko” or another type of “Yamamoto” plastic bait or Sweet Beaver.

The second trick we use at the very end of the spawn here. We turn on the electronics and find the first major piece of structure large enough to hold bass and baitfish that have left the creek. The key word is close. We stay within a ½ mile to a mile of the major spawning area when looking for these spots. The key spots will have grass and offer deep water escape routes nearby.

The Northeast, Bohemia, and Elk Rivers

The Northeast River offers one of the best flipping bites on the bay, as well as being a 20 minute ride from the Sassafras. One of the better springtime spots in this area is Furnace Bay. Many large bass are taken on buzzbaits from Furnace Bay in the early part of the year. The Bohemia offers average fishing for bass, but is a quick shot to both the Elk and the Sassafras, and is a good middle of the road launch point. For the angler that has a smaller boat, who can’t stand the longer, more difficult ride to the Sassafras from the Havre De Grace ramp, this is a good place to start.

The docks located in the Northeast and Elk are prime targets for the bass, as they are devoid of most of the structure that the Sassafras offers. The bass hit plastics and black and blue Terminator jigs here well, on both the outgoing and incoming tides. Placement is critical here. The jigs must not only be put into the smallest of holes and openings, but must be presented multiple times before a strike occurs. Practice your flipping and pitching techniques before attempting these waters.

The Susquehanna river by the railroad bridge above Havre De Grace is a hot spot for both largemouth and smallmouth bass, and Garrett Island, in the rocks also produces at times. This area is effected by the amount of water that is let out of the dam up river, as it can be extremely muddy when they release a lot of water after heavy spring rains, and it can almost stop the smallmouth bite at times.

When this occurs, seeking out the clearer water offered by Swan Creek further south of the Havre De Grace ramp is a good area to start. The grassbeds and shallow wood can hold huge numbers of pre-spawn and spawning bass that readily hit spinnerbaits, Senko’s, tubes, and small crankbaits, such as a Strike Pro USA Oscar, and a Rapala DT6 in the slightly deeper edges. We just use a heavier line to reduce the depth of this bait in these areas.

Spring fishing on these rivers, and the Sassafras in particular, offers some unbelievable action at times. These rivers are suited to every style of fishing. If you’re a flipper, it is there. Spinnerbaits and crankbaits will smoke them! There’s grass, docks, wood, current, eddies, ledges, barges, and points. And all of them hold bass! We have experienced 80 fish days in the Sassafras in the spring, and 30-40 fish days on some of the others.

Whether you are a tournament angler, or just a person who loves to catch bass, then these are the rivers for you!



Source by Steven Vonbrandt