As a novice bass fisherman, you may probably feel like you could use some pro tips to get started on the right foot. A popular game fish in North America, bass comes in several different varieties, among which the largemouth bass is the most widespread. While they are considered a predator fish species, they can be preyed on by other species while they are very young. In the wild, this fish can live for up to 16 years and a nice specimen can end up weighing around 22 pounds. It is quite obvious that bringing home some bass makes for a nice reward after a fishing trip, which is why many anglers love to catch bass. Here are some tips to get you started.
Choosing the right time to fish for bass
The best time of the year to fish for largemouth bass is during their pre-spawn season. Both male and female bass are in a frenzy to feed and they come very close to the shore. They come so close that you are even able to see them with the naked eye. During this time, bass starts searching for a good place to nest and they prefer shallow waters where the temperature is at a comfortable value of 55 to 65 degrees. If you fish for bass during this season, make sure that you release female bass so they can continue the cycle and produce other bass for the next season. On the other hand, a nicely sized male can make for a very good fishing trophy that you will not be able to say ‘no’ to.
Learn what bass is feeding on
Bass has quite a various diet that includes frogs, insects, snakes and small fish. As you can see, bass is not a very picky eater, which means that you can choose the right bait with great ease. However, if you are interested in maximizing the chances of catching more bass in a new area, a good idea would be to study the contents of the stomach of a caught specimen. Ingested food that was not yet digested will offer you plenty of clues on how to create a lure that will mimic the type of bait this type of fish prefers in that respective area. Live bait is always a great option and it is considered by many anglers to be better than synthetic lure. However, you may do just fine using both methods, and see for yourself which one works best.
Choosing your lure
If you want to catch bass, a good idea would be to go for crankbaits that are especially efficient when you fish in waters with rocky bottoms and surrounded by bushes and grass. Because this type of lure is very versatile, you will have no problems using it for your bass fishing trips. Here are some things you may want to know about crankbaits.
For instance, lipless crankbaits are ideal if you are fishing in very shallow waters or very deep ones. Lighter lures are a good choice in shallow waters, because they do not have to go deep down the bottom; however, if you are opting for fishing at greater depth, getting a heavier lure is an option.
Spinnerbaits are a good option if you want to cover a lot of water quickly. Because they have a blade like shape, spinnerbaits are fast and can dive deeper into the water; upon retrieval, you can act quickly, so catching bass is really made easy. Faster models are a good choice when you fish in clear waters; you can opt for slower models if the waters are murky and you cannot easily see the fish.
Topwater lures are another alternative to consider when you are bass fishing. They are your best bet if you go for shallow waters that are covered in vegetation that obscures your line of sight. Choosing the right color is important, because fish must not suspect the lure being anything else but food for them. Bright colors are indicated during summer, while neutral colors like white and grey are a better choice in winter.
Getting the right line for fishing bass
Besides knowing the type of bass you want to catch and what kind of lure to use, another important aspect to consider is getting the right line. Diving depth is very important when it comes to choosing your line. Pair your line with the type of bait you are opting for, and make sure that the bait can reach the depth you want for driving the fish out of their hidden spots.
As far as the type of line to get is concerned, go for plastic or rubber types. These are very light and will easily float on the surface of the water, so you will know when the fish is biting. However, make sure that your line does not easily get entangled in bushes and grass, where worms and lizards usually hide. Your line is supposed to look like them, but it can get frayed and broken if it gets entangled in the natural habitat of these water creatures.
Pick the best technique for the area you are fishing in
You have to pay attention to a lot of things when you are bass fishing. Having the best equipment at hand is one thing, but picking the right technique is also important. For instance, try to pitch your bait close to the areas where bass is known to lie in waiting for an opportunity to catch its prey. The jerky move given to the bait will cause the fish to react, when it hides under the vegetation close to the shoreline.
Flipping is another common technique for catching bass, because it offers your bait plenty of exposure to the bass. If the environment allows it, cast your line 8-10 feet away, then reel it back in, so that the lure moves through the water surface, drawing the attention of the fish that swims at the bottom.