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Peter E.

Fishing Hyacents

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Love em'  ;D or hate 'em  >:( these plants are becoming a fact of life in the South  ::). For those of us who fish this water born Kudzu  :o, how do you go about capturing one of the world's finest game fish (the large mouth bass) in this new enviroment  :-/? I want to hear your techniques to see how they differ from mine  ;), so I will wait till I hear about some of your techniques before I mention mine.

Thanks,

     Peter  8-)

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I fish the edge with a spinnerbait, topwater, worm, jerkbait, rattletrap, or flip deep in no mans land or like 3-5 feet in from the edge with a tube, senko, sweetbeaver, jig, paddletail worm, Zipper worm has been good to me also.

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Well, the fact that hyacinths are not rooted in the bottom grants them unique mobility.

Whereas rooted vegetation requires accomodative bottom content, hyacinths can be found 'anywhere'.

The angler can capitalize on this situation with his depth sounder by targeting hyacinths

that have rafted over a bottom drop-off, combined with submergent vegetation.

The hard part is figuring a way to penetrate the canopy to get the lure or bait down into the labyrinth

of roots. Some mighty fine bass sulk in the shade of hyacinth floats, to say the very least.

Set a live minnow about 1 yard down from the float, pitch the rig to the edge of the hyacinths

and grimace menacingly at the shiner so it swims under the raft. If that doesn't work (it never does),

a lot of fellows use artificials with a 1 oz bullet sinker for punching through the canopy.

In cherry-picking fashion, you'd go from hole to hole in the hyacinths, jigging a couple times at each.

Pete, if you can build a better mousetrap, we would all love to hear about it.

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Live bait method: hook the shiner just in front of the anal fin. Flip the shiner to the edge of the mat - (no float). The shiner will swim down and forward. Hold on because it won't be long before a bass smashes that shiner.

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As to there being a better mouse trap then you may have to turn to someone else, My techniques are similar to those mentioned in the first response. Although as you put it so well it seems that the traditional "cherry picker" is among one of the most obvious ways to attack these areas and as you pointed out they have no roots. I would also like to add that unlike most plants hyacents actually remove oxygen from the water. These plants actually pull twice as much oxygen during the night time hours. So to put his in a practical sense fish will actually move out from these plants starting at about the last hour of the day. These fish usually will not actually leave the plants until dark. During the day if you have the time you can clear lanes and pockets in the hyacents. This will give you openings to fish.

Peter

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I break this down into 3 parts:

outer edge: This is the first spot I try, back your boat at least 25-30 feet away from the cover and fan cast around the outer edges of it with fast moving baits like spinnerbaits, crankbaits, and topwaters. Sometimes even swimming a jig can work.

Mid-edge: This is the trickiest part, because the mid-edge is normally too thick for baits with exposed hooks but to thin for big bulky 3/4 and 1oz. baits. I normally pitch 5/16 or 1/2oz. jigs with a trimmed skirt, this is important as you want a slim profile. I then follow that up with a small straight tail worm like a texas-rigged trick-worm or slim senko. Also try a topwater frog worked frantically over the vegetation.

Meat: I call this part meat because it is the meat of the cover, the thickest nastiest part. This is where the big guns come out. For this I use a custom-made 8ft. Heavy action flipping stick with 65lb. Stren Super braid and weights from 1/2oz. to 1 1/2oz. I start out by throwing a topwater frog and working it with slow twitches, then I switch to flipping a YUM garret-mega tube with a 3/4oz. weight depending on the thickness of the cover. And if that doesn't work I go to my secret weapon ;), a t-rigged sweet beaver or smallie beaver. Sometimes under extreme conditions you need a very small compact bait, I suggest a ZOOM speed craw or Berkley Power craw, a really good one that has won many tournaments on Okeechobee is the Gambler Cricket.

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Basspro48, That is one of the best break downs I have seen on how to fish hyacents, but now I will ask anyone who thinks they can give an answer.

In the creek I fish I have a problem with the natural vegetation that is a matted thick sort of moss and when I try to use a soft plastic, even t-rigged. So if my bait touches the bottom it ussually comes back clogged. Any ideas how to use the ideas you mentioned?

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Use a Florida rigged weight. If your getting a lot of green slime there isn't much you can do to prevent clogging up your lure. Along the edge of the stuff you could use a hidden weight inside of the bait or a belly weight. This will let the bait lay flat on top of the stuff.

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Gary Yamamoto makes a weedguardn that you put in front of your weight, it slides on just like a bullet weight. I have never used it but it looks like a pretty good idea.  

http://***/cgi-bin/order/70-20

If that doesn't work you could try a belly weight like Chris said, or if you're using tubes you can use theose mustad hooks that have a weight you insert into the tube.

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One other option if the vegitation is all matted to the bottom, is to use a Drop shot rig. The pond below my house is almost unfishable this time of year. All of the vegitation that grows to the top in the summer is dead and laying on the bottom. I use the drop shot on both vertical and horizontal techniques. This allows the weight to get the lure down, but keeps the lure above the mess on the bottom of the pond. If the lure hits the bottom, it will be covered with the dead vegitation.

Here is a pic of the stuff in the pond:

southern_naiad_index.jpg

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Thanks for the picture. I'm pretty good at identifying a lot of vegetation in Florida, but I wasn't exactly sure what type of grass yall were talking about.

I don't fish that stuff very often. I mostly fish kissimmee grass and hydrilla.

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Ernel

Not having it in my hand, I'm not sure what weed that is. However, if it's unrooted

during the growing season, it's almost certainly "Coontail" (Ceratophyllum demersum)

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The first pic is of Southern Naiad or commonly known as bushy pond weed.

This is a pic of Coontail:

coontail_index.jpg

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You are well prepared, I like that and thank you ;)

Naiad is a new one on me. That darn pondweed family is enormous!

I believe the most popular pondweed in central Florida (true pondweed i.e. Potamogeton)

is Illinois Pondweed, locally called peppergrass.

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Is this the one you are referring to as Pepper grass?

Polygonum hydropiperoides Ie: Smartweed:

smartweed_index.jpg

Honestly the internet is a wonderful place isn't it. ;D

Here is the link I get My Plant info from:

http://aquaplant.tamu.edu/

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Is this the one you are referring to as Pepper grass?

Actually, it's the one that others refer to as peppergrass. Peppergrass is a misnomer

and I try to avoid the use of misnomers if I can, but it's not easy.

A good example of a local misnomer is Kissimmee Grass. I was speaking to a state biologist

who told me that Kissimmee Grass is erroneously applied to 4 completely different weed species.

I recall only two of them: Egyptian Panicgrass (Paspalidium geminatum) is called Kissimmee Grass

and believe it or not, Maidencane (Panicum hemitomon) is errantly called Kissimmee Grass.

Is it any wonder why botanists always use the scientific name?

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Is this the one you are referring to as Pepper grass?

I was speaking to a state biologist who told me that Kissimmee Grass is erroneously applied to 4 completely different weed species.

I'm probably guilty of that sometimes.

If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it might not be a true duck, but it's pretty dang close.

;)

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Hey Ya'll,

        Thanks for all of the responces! I have been trying some of them and they are working! They have yet to take on the full results that will come in time but that will take developing a feel for the new techniques. Those replies on the different aquatic plants would have tickled a botonist. Oh and thanks for the spelling check on hyacenths. I wish that I could get my digital camera working to get ya'll a better idea of what I am dealing with but unfortunately this new technology still baffles me. The ideas ya'll put in motion are really taking off. I really appreciate the plant replies though because I have taken the time to research their ranges and growing depths and their growth and so on. This way I can get an idea of what plants the bass will relate to as the year progresses.

                                            Thanks,

                                                      Peter

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