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cpvenom

live bluegill

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hey all, ive been a fsherman  for about 12 years now, just never joined till now.... anyway, on occasion i get that urge for live bait bassin when i am at my grandmother's house in florida. On tthe chance i cant find any shiners, i often have good luck with baby bluegill rigged on a live bait hook about 3 feet under a bobber. It seems to me that bluegill are often seen as a good food source for a bass, but i rarely see anyone using them. Just wanted to throw that out there as it seems not many people mention bluegill as bait. Maybe it's just me, but i have pulled some quality bass usiing them.

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I know that back in MN and probably in other states that bluegills are illegal to use as bait.

That being said, I remember when I was a nino I used to fish this private rock quarry lake, and the locals had a strategy for catching the big bass that lived there.  They would bring a can of corn down, put a piece on their hook, dangle it in the water next to the dock to catch one of the small bluegill that hang out there.  With that small bluegill they would then cast it out and use it like live bait, and within 5 or 6 minutes they would reel in a nice bass.  I always wanted to try it, but alas my dad wouldn't let me.

I would use bluegill on occasion as bait if I were able to.

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ah i do see how the legality of that could be a problem. The only time i use the 'gills is at my grandmothers lake which is private property, but your dad was smart not to let you do that there... nothin ruins a fishing day quicker than the game warden... and perhaps a large asteroid impact  ::)

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In Florida you are aloud to use non game fish as bait. A blugill is considered a game fish in Florida.

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You could always match the colors of that bluegill to a tube, lipless crank, soft or hard jerkbait, or whatever and blaze them over the postspawn beds for some great action.  Perch of anykind eat bass fry which kinda upsets big daddy bass.  Explosive strikes make the postspawn my most favorite time of year.

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Using Blue Gills - Bream: They are allowed in many places including Florida, but here's the catch. They must first be legally caught. Which means by hook, line, and bait. They can't be netted, snagged or otherwise. Check your local fishery officials. In Florida they will eat other fare first such as shiners or shad. The ideal bream size is about the size of a 1/2 dollar which makes them difficult to legally catch. If you were to get checked in Florida you better have the equipment to catch them if you are using them.

Freshwater shrimp and minnows of nongame fish (except catfish) may be taken by:

Cast nets having a stretched mesh size not greater than 1 inch.

Minnow dip nets not more than 4 feet in diameter.

Minnow seines having a stretched mesh size not greater than 1 inch, a length not more than 20 feet, and a depth not more than 4 feet.

Minnow traps not more than 24 inches in length and 12 inches in diameter, with a funnel entrance not more than 1 inch in spread.

Any game fish harvested by these methods must be released immediately.

Taking of bait for the purpose of sale requires a commercial fishing license.

USE OF FISH FOR BAIT

Black bass, peacock bass or any part thereof may not be used as bait.

Live goldfish or carp may not be used as bait.

Whole pickerel or bream (e.g., bluegill, redear sunfish, redbreast sunfish, spotted sunfish, flier, warmouth) or parts thereof may be used as bait for sportfishing by he angler who caught them.  Whole pickerel or bream or parts thereof may not be used as bait for trotlines or bush hooks or any method other than by rod and reel or pole and line.

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Guest avid

Bream (bluegill, sunfish etc.) can be used as bait but they must have been legally caught by YOU. Meaning your guide or friend can't catch them and supply them to you as bait.

From Florida Fish and Wildlife:

USE OF FISH FOR BAIT

Black bass, peacock bass or any part thereof may not be used as bait.

Live goldfish or carp may not be used as bait.

Whole pickerel or bream (e.g., bluegill, redear sunfish, redbreast sunfish, spotted sunfish, flier, warmouth) or parts thereof may be used as bait for sportfishing by the angler who caught them.

Now to the fun stuff.

I occasionally use a bluegill for bait. They are excellent big bass catchers. In my home lake I have used them twice in the past year and a half and have caught bass in the 3-4 lb range both times. It can be fun to watch that bobber go crazy and know that the bluegill has spotted a biggun coming in for lunch.

Speaking only for myself, the reason I don't do it more often is because I pride myself on the challenge of "fooling" of bass on artificials, but there is no doubt that big bass will eat bluegill and so I'll use em once in awhile.

Another thing. I have caught nice sized bass out of spots where I never caught anything. I don't know why, but it has happened a couple of times. Just letting that bream swim around either calls in a bass from a nearby spot, or pulls a reluctant bass out of a honey hole I didn't know existed.

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Whole pickerel or bream (e.g., bluegill, redear sunfish, redbreast sunfish, spotted sunfish, flier, warmouth) or parts thereof may be used as bait for sportfishing by he angler who caught them.  Whole pickerel or bream or parts thereof may not be used as bait for trotlines or bush hooks or any method other than by rod and reel or pole and line.

I stand corrected  ;D they might have changed the laws. I know when I was growing up you didn't want to get caught using bluegill as bait and from what I understood was that it was considered a gamefish.

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I have never intentionally used bluegill as bait.... but one time i was fishing for bluegill on a private dock and i caught one. I wanted to know where they went after you caught em so I just dropped him in the water without taking the hook out. He swam under the dock and after 30 sec I decided to reel him in. It was tough to real in so I thought i had it snagged on the side of the dock but i kept slowly reeling. Next think I know i see a 5+lber come out of the water. I brought him in and he was barely hooked with the tiny bluegill hook. It was a pb bass but that is the only time I have ever used bluegill as bait.

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Chris,

The gill is considered a game fish in Florida, however it has always been usable as a bait as long as you caught it. In some states it's a game fish and not usable, in others it's not a game fish. In Texas they can use gold fish - here we can't. That's why it is always best to check with local fishing officials before doing anything. You need a manual just to keep up with the different slots on bass in Florida. Other states you need a manual just to keep up with open and closed dates, and those vary from lake to lake. A bit crazy.

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My home lake has no shad, so bream, crappie, and golden shiners are preferred bass forage.  Bluegill are all over the lake.  A little hook and piece of nightcrawler is all I need to be in business.  I wouldn't know how to "hunt" for shiners but have caught a couple of 10" golden shiners on little poppers.

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Avid,

Spread some oatmeal on the water and then toss in a small gold hook with a small bread ball.  If you have a good population of shiners bait the area then toss a cast net.

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Guest avid
Avid,

Spread some oatmeal on the water and then toss in a small gold hook with a small bread ball. If you have a good population of shiners bait the area then toss a cast net.

Thanks George, My castnetting days are over (arthritis) but I can manage oatmeal and a doughball.  I have never fished with golden shiners but I know they are considered the king of the big bass baits.  I don't think my little home lake is "loaded" with them, seems like bream win that contest, but it would be cool to try and hook a few to use as bait.

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all livebait is illegal in utah

ive spent to much money on lures to throw a livebait anyways

Really?  I wonder why that is.  I can understand regulating which bait can and can't be used.  You don't want to introduce invasive species, but you can't take your kid to a local pond with some crawlers or crickets so he/she can have fun fishing?  Seems like alot to ask a 4 year old to cast a fly or lure.

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ah i do see how the legality of that could be a problem. The only time i use the 'gills is at my grandmothers lake which is private property, but your dad was smart not to let you do that there... nothin ruins a fishing day quicker than the game warden... and perhaps a large asteroid impact  ::)

I disagree with your statment. You shouldent be doing anything wrong that will get you introuble with the warden. If you are you arent a very good fishermen. You gutta cheat. And that normely means harm to bass. THen that takes away are fishing.Just my opionion

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ah i do see how the legality of that could be a problem. The only time i use the 'gills is at my grandmothers lake which is private property, but your dad was smart not to let you do that there... nothin ruins a fishing day quicker than the game warden... and perhaps a large asteroid impact  ::)

I disagree with your statment. You shouldent be doing anything wrong that will get you introuble with the warden. If you are you arent a very good fishermen. You gutta cheat. And that normely means harm to bass. THen that takes away are fishing.Just my opionion

actually that was exactly what i was getting at, just misphrased i guess...

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