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natanestaban

What are these bass DOING II

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Late summer (Aug/Sept) on a deep clear section of a southern reservoir.  Very clear water, late afternoon, and dead calm glass surface.   Lower end of Lake Tuscaloosa, for those familiar with it.   I was fishing a point where a very steep bluff cut into it and had just caught a nice fish under a dock 30 yards away.  I look down and a very large bass that is at least 6lbs (spot or LM, I could not tell) swims right under my boat with about 20 very small bass that appeared to be 1st year class - less than 6 inches all around it. Almost like pilot fish attached to a shark.   Needless to say it started casting everything I had in the boat.   None of the fish large or small even turned to look at a bait but weren't spooked either.  I followed with the trolling motor casting away but they just swam along the bluff wall very slowly and finally went so deep I could not see them anymore.  

  Why were all the small fish hanging with the big one that could easily eat 3 of them at a time and it was way past spawning time so that could not have been the reason.  Water temp was probably 90 degrees.    

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You're kidding me right??

You don't know what was going on...really???

Don't you know fish travel in SCHOOLS....the big one was the teacher and the others were her students.

OK...that was lame..but funny!!!??? ;D

ajr

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I'm not sure what the bass were doing; but you did say that you saw a nice big one and that you threw everything in the boat at it and it would still not bite.  My guess is that once you saw the big bass you got really excited and you probably sped up your retrieve, in return it was to fast for them and they would not bite it.  If I were you I would just act like a fish wasn't there and fish it slow as fishing 30 ft. of water in the dead of Winter.  Of course some guys won't agree with this but this is what I would do.

8-)

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Don't worry so much about what they are doing and start to figure out what they want to eat. Most likely you have to present something to them that they just can't refuse. i.e.: drop shot, Senko, Fat Ika, shaky worm (although I've never caught a fish on one yet!), etc.. Any good finesse presentation.

Given an opportunity for an easy meal, no bass, regardless of their mood, will pass it up. Just not in their nature.

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The surface water temperature doesn't necessarliy indicate the water water temperature down a few feet. Have you swam in a lake and notice how fast the water temperature changes, even down a few feet?

Contrary to what most bass fishermen believe, bass can not survive 90 degree water temperature very long. It's not the warmth of the water, it's the ability of water to hold dissolved oxygen at a level the bass can survive. Bass need a minimum of 3 mg/L of DO to survive. 85 degree water is the maximum temperature that will hold 3 mg/L of DO. The green weeds produce DO during the day time and the weed cover helps the bass to survive in warm water, however given a chance the bass will move down into deepr cooler water with higher levels of DO. The ideal temperature is between 65 to 70 degrees with 7 tp 10 mg/L of DO and that is where the big bass will go, during hot water conditions, if they can.

What you may have witnessed was a big bass that was in poor health for whatever reason and the little bass were curious and following to pick off any bits and pieces the bass spit up as it swam along.

WRB

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The surface water temperature doesn't necessarliy indicate the water water temperature down a few feet. Have you swam in a lake and notice how fast the water temperature changes, even down a few feet?

Contrary to what most bass fishermen believe, bass can not survive 90 degree water temperature very long. It's not the warmth of the water, it's the ability of water to hold dissolved oxygen at a level the bass can survive. Bass need a minimum of 3 mg/L of DO to survive. 85 degree water is the maximum temperature that will hold 3 mg/L of DO. The green weeds produce DO during the day time and the weed cover helps the bass to survive in warm water, however given a chance the bass will move down into deepr cooler water with higher levels of DO. The ideal temperature is between 65 to 70 degrees with 7 tp 10 mg/L of DO and that is where the big bass will go, during hot water conditions, if they can.

What you may have witnessed was a big bass that was in poor health for whatever reason and the little bass were curious and following to pick off any bits and pieces the bass spit up as it swam along.

WRB

Hopefully my comment is not too far off track from the original post, but when reading this (above) I thought I'd jump in. In terms of dissolved oxygen, the O2 levels are greatly dependent on sunlight penetration, are they not? If you have murky water, for example, and its summer time- sunlight will only penetrate the first few feet of water, so photosynthesis is limited to that space, and the thermocline should also be pulled up closer to the surface due to limited light penetration, true?

And, if bass rarely go below the thermocline (baitfish feed on plankton and other things that depend on the sunlight & photosynthesis, better O2 levels, visiblity issues, etc) then, at least in quite stained water, should this not position bass fairly shallow 'naturally' as a consequence?

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I have actually seen this happen before in an ultra clear pond. I was also unable to get them to bite. I finally decided that the reason they didn't bite was that the water was too clear and the bass knew I was there.

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The surface water temperature doesn't necessarliy indicate the water water temperature down a few feet. Have you swam in a lake and notice how fast the water temperature changes, even down a few feet?

Contrary to what most bass fishermen believe, bass can not survive 90 degree water temperature very long. It's not the warmth of the water, it's the ability of water to hold dissolved oxygen at a level the bass can survive. Bass need a minimum of 3 mg/L of DO to survive. 85 degree water is the maximum temperature that will hold 3 mg/L of DO. The green weeds produce DO during the day time and the weed cover helps the bass to survive in warm water, however given a chance the bass will move down into deepr cooler water with higher levels of DO. The ideal temperature is between 65 to 70 degrees with 7 tp 10 mg/L of DO and that is where the big bass will go, during hot water conditions, if they can.

What you may have witnessed was a big bass that was in poor health for whatever reason and the little bass were curious and following to pick off any bits and pieces the bass spit up as it swam along.

WRB

Hopefully my comment is not too far off track from the original post, but when reading this (above) I thought I'd jump in. In terms of dissolved oxygen, the O2 levels are greatly dependent on sunlight penetration, are they not? If you have murky water, for example, and its summer time- sunlight will only penetrate the first few feet of water, so photosynthesis is limited to that space, and the thermocline should also be pulled up closer to the surface due to limited light penetration, true?

And, if bass rarely go below the thermocline (baitfish feed on plankton and other things that depend on the sunlight & photosynthesis, better O2 levels, visiblity issues, etc) then, at least in quite stained water, should this not position bass fairly shallow 'naturally' as a consequence?

You factor in wind, sprng water, streams, creeks and rivers. Moving water via wave action or tumbling over rocks etc., oxygenates the upper water column. Sun light drives photosynthesis, however aquatic plants consum Do during the night. The water would need to be very dirty to reflect sun light penetration to a few feet, most off color water will still have a depth of light about 5 to 6 feet.

If the alke doesn't have deeper water, a lot of low land and natural lakes in Florida for example, restrict the bass from finding deeper water and must adapt to the water they live in. The bass in shallow lakes use heavy weed mates that provide shade that cools the water under them a few degrees. The bass will still seek the coolest water possible, under hot water conditions. If the wind stops and the heat continues to over heat the water, the bass will die off from lack of DO.

Threadfin shad eat phyto planton, gizzard shad and some other baitfish eat zoo plankton, vegetable verese animal. Most baitfish eat small water or airborne creatures that live in or near the weed cover.

The one constant that you can depend on is; bass will not be far from prey.

The thermocline (metalimnion) is located where the upper layer cools about 3 to 4 degrees within a few feet, in most lakes. The idea that lakes only have one thermocline and no DO below that layer can be miss leading. Lakes that have current can and do have multiple thermocline layers with sufficent DO level between. The lowest layer (hypolimnion) will be void of DO.

Where I fish the lakes often have 2 or more thermocline layers and bass populations living at those different depths. It's not uncommon for bass to be at 60 feet and 30 feet, moving up to spawn and at night. Like the shallow bass in Florida, the same bass have adapted to the ecosystem.

I think we are drifting way off topic.

WRB

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