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1st Time on Harris Chain, FL


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The bite has been slow recently.   Too many tournaments.  Two things are working for me,  soft plastic toads fished back in the pads and spinnerbaiting the same.  When the sun gets high, flip heavy grass around lake points.  With all the rain, Haines Creek should be running.  If it is, try below the spillway on the Griffin side. 

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On 6/23/2023 at 6:51 AM, Captain Phil said:

The bite has been slow recently.   Too many tournaments.  Two things are working for me,  soft plastic toads fished back in the pads and spinnerbaiting the same.  When the sun gets high, flip heavy grass around lake points.  With all the rain, Haines Creek should be running.  If it is, try below the spillway on the Griffin side. 

 

Specific and generous advice. Mighty neighborly of you, Cap'n Phil!

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We did decently with just about 2.5 hours to work with, fishing offshore hydrilla. Loved being out there—first ever experience fishing Central Florida.
 

My pilot had a 5lb+ hooked that broke off. Scale said 3.42 on my nicest one. The fish were awfully beat up, for some reason.

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@Captain Phil, hopefully next time I’m down I’ll have a full day or two to put your advice to the test! But I had to get on the road by the time the sun got high.

 

 

Some dinks that got the morning started; the bigger of the two seemed to have recovered from an earlier injury.E8ECDD49-9DAB-4E9F-8226-C8CEB737D809.thumb.jpeg.d7d27a886396e05c876eed7da3c0ce93.jpeg

 

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The fish are really getting beat up.   Our boat ramps are maxed out most every weekend with tournament after tournament.   Tournament anglers carry their fish around in the live wells all day, then dump them in the marina.  I see dead floating bass every Monday morning.  If we are going to have good fishing and tournaments, we need to school these anglers how to take better care of the fish.

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@Captain PhilCatch & release tournaments are the answer. Any fish subject to riding along in a bass boat live well is probably toast at the end of the day. 

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36 minutes ago, Dwight Hottle said:

@Captain PhilCatch & release tournaments are the answer. Any fish subject to riding along in a bass boat live well is probably toast at the end of the day. 

 

There is no reason to keep bass.  Catch, photo and release has been the standard in salt water fishing tournaments for some time.  At the least, bag limits should be reduced to three fish per angler.  This would significantly reduce deaths and injury to the fish and concentrate anglers more on catching big fish.  In my mind, there is no pride in bringing five 12" bass to the scales.  I would rather weigh one 6 pounder.

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2 hours ago, Dwight Hottle said:

@Captain PhilCatch & release tournaments are the answer. Any fish subject to riding along in a bass boat live well is probably toast at the end of the day. 

Especially during the spawning season. The Harris Chain has gotten so popular for tournaments the fish here get the crap beat out of them. 
There were 6 tournaments here two weekends ago. 
They used to tell us the caught fish will return to the lake they were caught from. They’ll never convince me of that totally. From Griffin thru 9 miles of Haines Crk. The lock. Then Lake Eustis. Dead river then across Harris. Then return?

Not buying it. 
 

There’s gotta be a better way. 

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Now I’m in St Augustine (needing to get here was why I only had 2.5 hours to fish the other day).
So far, I can confirm the pond fishing on Anastasia Island is no good. ? But I did see something curious in one pond: a fish jumping at least 3 feet out of the water, and maintaining airtime, gliding in the air like some sort of saltwater fish. Any idea what it was?

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