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tinusp

Big bass when small bass are biting

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Ok so you've all been asked this question a million times, but I'm a newbie so I'll ask it again. We have found this new dam last night, between my friend and I caught about 50 bass in 2 hours but only 3 decent ones, 3.8 pounds and 2 of about 2 pounds (2 on super flukes, the third my jointed jitterbug's debut fish)

So my question how can I catch more big bass? I've been told that I would make a lot of money if I can solve this problem permanently.

Tips received so far:

1. Bigger baits

2. Topwater baits catch big bass

3. Spots not pressurised

4. Structure close to deep water

5. Slow fishing

Do you agree or anything to add?

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Hey Tinusp,

   If I were you I would throw some bigger baits at them.  Something like a 10in worm depending on the type of structure you are fishing.  Also structure next to deep water always is a good bet.  I've never heard that topwater will catch bigger fish thats a new one to me.  And don't forget live bait if it's allowed.  A nice plup fathead minnow always works for me.

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     I agree with the tips that you listed. I would also like to add that you nead to fish differantly than everyone else. Using big baits is very important for catching bigger bass. Buzz-baits tend to catch big bass. Good luck, and good skill!

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Ok so you've all been asked this question a million times, but I'm a newbie so I'll ask it again. We have found this new dam last night, between my friend and I caught about 50 bass in 2 hours but only 3 decent ones, 3.8 pounds and 2 of about 2 pounds (2 on super flukes, the third my jointed jitterbug's debut fish)

So my question how can I catch more big bass? I've been told that I would make a lot of money if I can solve this problem permanently.

Tips received so far:

1. Bigger baits

2. Topwater baits catch big bass

3. Spots not pressurised

4. Structure close to deep water

5. Slow fishing

Do you agree or anything to add?

Sounds like you have the basics covered!! One thing that you have listed that works for me is slow fishing I mean very slow fishing!!! Work your soft plastic baits " like a 10" -12" inch worm" as slow as you can stand let it sit for one to two minutes before moving it and move it very little when you do. You won't catch many fish doing this but hang on when one hits, Big fish almost refuse to chase anything most of the year.  Fishing this slow takes a large amount of concntration, so stay focused!!! Its always wise to try and locate large fish before going to it because it will wear you out.

Tight Lines,

Fatdaddy151

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i dissagree about buzz-baits

big fat pigs are lazy, they would much rather hit a large slow moving bait like a worm or a jig, also. buzz-baits are only good at most times in the morning or at night. if u really want to seperate the big fish from the small fish dont use top-water. the smaller fish will allways hit it first.

the only excepttion is frogs above the slop.

smaller bass rarely try eating a large frog or rat above the slop, u will catch a higher percentage of lunkers on the frogs that way.

water temp is also a big factor of when lunkers will hit fast moving baits like buzzbaits.

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        I have caught many big bass on a buzz bait. I agree that they might work better in the morning or evening, but I have caught nice bass in the middle of the day on them. You don't have to work a buzz-bait fast. Add a big trailer to a double bladed buzz-bait and  you can fish it slowly across the top. Take a buzz-bait  to an unpressured pond and you will most likely catch the biggest bass in the place much faster than you would with a 10 in. worm.    :-/

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Your list is verry good. One that I think needs to be added is fishing at night.  Definatley a good time to get big fish. As far as top water goes, believe me big fish hit top water. Big is relative.  I have caught probably 50 bass over 5lbs on buzzbaits but I think buzzbaits are a poor choice for trophy bass. They are great for fish under 8lbs but there are much better choices for double diget fish.

It doesnt sound like tinusp is trying to target big bass as much as he is trying to weed through the smaller fish.  In situations like that I think the best bet is to throw big baits.  Big baits is the best way to weed out the smaller fish. In the day time throw a big bulky jig or big plastic worm. At night Throw a waking swimbait or big worms.  Most of the things that tinusp mentioned are right on for BIG fish but not nessisarily true for fish under 10lbs. Fish under 10 tend to be more agresive and will even chase a fast lure.

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To add to the buzz bait discussion, we also have to remember that buzz baits are (as per my limited experience and vast amount of reading, two different things, I know) mainly reaction baits or search baits.  I don't fish a buzz very long... maybe four casts, then I throw something else.  I will usually have about three lures in rotation, just so the fish have something different to look at and it depends on the lure as to how I fish it.  I usually bring out the buzzbait if I know there are big fish to be had and I want to pull them up from a little deeper, or out of the weeds.  But that is just me and on top of that, Im in the south.  Up north or in the west, things may be different.  

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I have a trophy on my wall that was caught on a  topwater develshorse 14lbs 8oz. I also have 7 more that where caught on top (they where turned loose and not mounted) . Sun up and sun down and cloudy skies big fish hit on top. Three trophy fish i caught where on spinnerbait, 8 on jig, 4 on soft jerkbait,3 on worm,6 on tubes,(trophy meaning 8 lbs or bigger) Now if your trying to get a bigger fish than a dink then you can crank them or jig them whatever you just gotta fish.

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While I am not saying that a big bass won't hit a topwater bait I don't think that a topwater would work in this situation.  He and his friend caught 50 bass in two hours.  With that many bass in the area I dont think that a topwater would make it through without something small getting to it first.  The comment about fishing really slow with a jig or a 10 to 12in plastic worm I still think that would be your best bet.

                            Kajun

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Now if your trying to get a bigger fish than a dink then you can crank them or jig them whatever you just gotta fish. Your already on fish you just need to find something different that the larger fish are hanging on. It could be a larger rock, smaller pea gravel, wood, weed, just something different. maybe a few rocks that had fallen off the dam into the deeper water, sometimes they put a lip under water that jets off before it drops off. Fish the corners on either side of the dam. it has to have a channel if its a creek dam that was put there to back up the water to make the lake. That in itself is something different. You might be using the right lures or might need to change a little and find these key features. You can fish faster slower bigger smaller whatever but if your not in or around a key feature its kinda hunt and peck. The larger fish will always be in the best cover or structure available in a given area. You just gotta find it.

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In my opinion, the most logical thing I would do if I were in a location that is holding several smaller fish, is move. The distance I would move however would be relatively short.

If smaller fish are holding near trees in 2-4 feet of water, I would move out a little bit. I would try fishing the same area but move out to 4-6 feet.

Another thing you have to remember is not every area is going to have big fish in it.

JT Bagwell

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In Minnesota, In my opinion has relativly cold water compared to down south, topwater baits are good for average sized fish maybe 2lbs, and some maybe up to 3, but the rest bigger than that usually wont chase buzzbaits. i have caught 100s of 2lb and less bass on buzzbaits, and caught considerable bigger fish on lures such as a jig, big worm, tube, and other slow moving baits. I agree that buzzbaits are search baits which pickup reaction strikes most of the time. You will miss alot of fish on them, and its better to use a follow bait such as a senko, to actually catch the fish.

I have had some good days on a buzzbait like on green lake where we just slaughtered the 3 lbers on and around shoreline laydowns, so i can see where ur coming from but i just dont think its a solid way to seperate big/small.

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Move out to deeper water...keep going...Okay, now find structure, drop-offs (mutiple steps are ideal), an isolated hole, a hump, a point plunging into deep water in the main channel, flooded trees or stumps...something interesting and different then the surrounding subterranian landscape. We call those little guys bank runners and although I catch 'em , I don't fish for them. I catch better fish in deeper water, like 5-20ft, especiallly this time of year. I think the smaller fish chase around the baitfish and injure them and/or cause them to panic and become somewhat disoriented so larger fish are able to prey on the bait without expending as much energy as they might otherwise. Bigger fish suspend near structure and become a part of it to some extent, taking advantage of opportunities to feed rather than actively pursuing their quarry. So if that's where they are, all you have to do is present something the fish think they should eat or something that invades their territory and gets them ticked off. It's harder to find fish than catch them, that's what I like about hiring guides!

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The best lunker bass lure is the worm.  Bassmaster has released a series of books and these stats are not precise, but they took the lunkers caught from their lunker club and used the lures they were caught on.  It was like over 80 percent of the lunkers actually caught on the plastic worm.  

Really if you are fishing a lake that has little pressure like a farm pond then your bass will pretty much hit anything.  

Big topwater baits are great lunker lures.  I have read articles of lunkers coming up from twenty feet below to hit a topwater.  The zara spook is one of the most renowned lure of choice for topwater.

The large swim baits scored actually pretty low, but that could be them being so new.  They are pretty successful on the california lakes, but only expect to get a big bass bite once the whole day depending on the lake you choose.  

If you want the lunkers you have to change your tactics and fish only for lunkers, which will also mean the fifty bass you caught will go down to less than five.  

One of the bassmaster books is the best way to go since the whole book is about catching the lunker and techniques to use.

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Disagree with the worm being the best lunker bait. I'll go with a 1/2oz jig n pig anytime over even a large worm. I'm not saying you won't catch big fish with it but I know every bite I get will be a good fish on the jig.

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I agree 100% with the Jig and Pig. When I am jig fishing, I don't have to wade through a moutain of short fish to get a keeper. Like Craig said, if you get bit on a big jig, you know it will be a nice one.

JT Bagwell

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You didn't say what type of water you were fishing.  pond,  lake, river, small 5ac. pond.???  small bodies of water that do not receive pressure often have stunted growth with the potential to never have bass reach sizeable growth.  Ya'll keep your buzzbaits in the tackle box.  I throw mine when the bass at fork tell me to.  Which is spring thru the fall, mornings, evenings, and cloudy low light days.  Sometimes in the heat of the day.  I strongly agree with backing off from 5-10' to 10-15,18' to search for the bigger ones. Whatever depth, fish deeper.

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This could be a mute point, but it's tough to catch big bass when there are very few to catch.  Isn't it possible that after seeing that there were 50 bass caught in 2 hours that it is overpopulated and the bass are stunted?  

Just one thing that I've always heard is fish water that is known to have big bass. if that is what you're after. I fish a few lakes where you could catch dinks all decent fish almost all day long, but catching a big one is not very likely because of the over population.

All information given by everyone else sounds good! ;D

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Guest whittler

Some really great answers. I do go with the big bass big baits, and two of my favorites the Fat Ika, T-rigged and a Kalin Magombo on a 3\8 to 3\4oz. jig head. Your friends will make fun of you when you pull this thing out but the Kalin has been good to me for the last couple years. This thing will go deep and slow or wake the surface like a buzz bait, a very versatile bait.

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Regardless of the lures used, we always catch a representative sample of what's in the lake (dam?).  If really big bass are present, you'll catch them on lots of stuff.

Through the years I've had secret lakes to myself: some had big bass and others had very few big ones. After each was fished, a basic population sample is what I caught esp.  since I was able to cover the bulk of the water.  From one particular lake, I caught literally 100's of bass all under two pounds, then one lucky day in October, I caught one that weighed over 6 lbs. Very long and lean she was, which told me the growth rate just wasn't too good in that pond. All the other hundreds of dinks had the big head/small body look.

In another pond that had lots of forage, I caught the thunder out of big ones.  They were dumb, the water was colored, and no one else fished it.  There I caught 3-5 big ones over 4 pounds every time I fished the lake's only sunken brush pile just about any time except the spawn.  Unfortunately, this pond was drained is how I know I absolutely had them cornered. It was the big bass hotel! In summary, you'll catch what's in there!

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