Bluegill - Big Bluegill

Do you love big bluegill?

Hey guys, I'm new to the forum so I figured I'd do an intro before I get into the main topic, feel free to skip this paragraph if you don't care :). I'm Sean and Sunfish are among my favorite thing to fish for because of how many species there are, I often target and catch Bluegills, Pumpkinseeds, Green Sunfish, Hybrid Sunfish and Warmouth and hopefully someday I'll get to take a trip somewhere to catch Redears and Coppernose. Aside from fishing I'm an avid SCUBA diver and love to watch fish underwater, especially sunfish since they're very intelligent and display interesting behavior towards divers (and aggressive behavior when I swim into a nesting zone in the Spring). I also have been keeping fish (mainly natives) for over 2 years and have 8 tanks set up (5.5-75 Gallons) and as far as sunfish I have a female green and am hoping to get other species soon. Now getting on to this thread.

 

 Can anyone suggest some good flies (dry or wet) to use for Bluegills and P-Seeds for this time of the year? I'd like to get some sunfish on flies at my local lake before the water gets to cold for them. Unfortunately half of the sunfish at this lake are stunted from overcrowding and the Bluegills average 2-6" (biggest I've caught was 10"), Pumpkinseeds average 2-5" (largest was 8.5-9"), and Greens are 1.5-6" (biggest was 8"). The reason I'm listing size is because I've tried certain flies and they've hit them but couldn't fit them in their mouths so I can't use anything to big here. There is another local lake I have with a better, healthier, and larger gill population about 40 minutes from me though so feel free to suggest bigger flies for there since they average 8-12".

Thanks in advance!

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dont fish anything bigger tan a size 12.you will still get the bigger ones but even the little guys can fit a 12 in their mouth;dont go smaller either or they will swallow it.you will still get a lot of hits on the surface as insect activity is high until the frost hits.there are lots of good tyers on this site that will be glad to help.there are also fly fishing and tying groups on here you can join .

forgot to say WELCOME.and pinch down those barbs .A LOT easier to unhook.never had a gill throw the hook

What Cosvrove said.
Adhere to it.

There are two concerns: surface and subsurface.
For surface, I like foam spiders, gurgle pops and bivisible style hackle flies.
For subsurface I go with Briminators, Cypert Minnows and small clouser-style streamers.

Start working the surface and move deeper with the subsurface flies until you find the fish.
Use light leaders, light tippets and slow, jerky strips.
Thanks guys! I'll tie some of those briminators and I already have all the rest tied.
While you're at it, Sean, visit Bill Byrd's web site and read up on his systematic methods...
http://www.byrdultrafly.com

Honestly, I think as long as the fly looks like food, and is in their feeding zone, they'll hit it.

This was my third year fly fishing.  The first year saw most of my fish coming on GFA Hoppers (an easy foam pattern), and Olive Wooly Buggers with either a bead head or bead-chain (looks like eyes).  Last year, the second year I was fly-fishing, it was all about Gurgle-Pops, with or without a fly on a dropper under the Gurgle-Pop.  Bead Head Scuds were hot at the start of the season.  This year, my third, saw some of my fish coming on Muddler Minnows (various sizes and color patterns), with or without a dropper.  If I was using a dropper, it's was usually a Purple and Starling soft hackle.  Mosquito Soft Hackles have also proven popular, both with and without a bead head.

Various dry fly patterns work at any given time.  Again, if it looks like a bug, and a hungry sunnie is around, it's getting slurped.  Elk Hair Caddis / Deer Hair Caddis, Catskill-style dry flies, etc.

Click on my name, and check out my photo album.  I've got LOTS of flies and micro-jigs pictured.  Most have caught fish.

I forgot smallish Wooly Buggers.

a real dynamite fly fishing method;; is a dropper;; on a popper!!   tie a nymph patteren;; about 2 feet;; onto a poppers hook.  the popper  acts like a float;; but also gets hit as well as the dropper.  sometimes I catch 2 gills at one time!! 

I went out yesterday and tried the smallest flies I had that I could fit the tippet through the eye and they were pounding on them nonstop but they couldn't fit any of the flies in their mouth. Kind of cheated and put on an 8 hook with a small piece of crawler on it and I caught a dozen or so. Going to a lake with bigger gills next week.

Couple of questions:

1)  What size flies were you fishing?

2)  What size material are you using for tippet?

I've tied, and fished, flies down to size 20.  I've got smaller hooks, and I need to do some flies on those :)

hey Sean;  I tip my baits all the time buddy!!  all is fair;; catching blue gills!!

Sean,
Carls right, tipping is fair. But, at the same time, the devoted fly angler sees it as cheating. I get whee you're coming from.
I've had the same problem the last few times out: little brim grabbing at anything that hits the water.
It shouldn't be long before the bigger ones start spending more time inshore, feeding for the winter. This varies by location, of course. Way north it's probably underway already. Here in SC it's not quite upon us yet.
Also, you said the fish were stunted so it's possible the total population leans toward smaller specimens. Somewhere there will be bigger ones, but they may be few in number. A change in venue may be called for - Each place is different..

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