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Jig Fishing Under A Float.....Things to Consider and Other Recommendations

Here's just a couple jigs I like to fish. Some micro and some regular sizes.

Just one of my Panfish Boxes.....Various jigs, floats and weights.

I've had several inquiries in recent weeks about fishing jigs under a float so I thought I would post a discussion with my suggestions and then others could add their questions and/or suggestions as they feel necessary.

I've been fishing jigs under a FIXED float for many years and it has become one of my favorite techniques to pursue Gills. Just like any and all fishing it takes calculated decisions to generate strikes and optimize the strikes that you get. The three most important factors in my decisions regarding jig fishing are as follows:

1. Water TEMPERATURE: This will dictate the size of the jig I select along with the float and weight. The colder the water gets the smaller I go. The natural tendency of the fish in these conditions will be to softly approach a bait, this would often remain undetected by larger gear. In ideal water temperatures above 62 degrees I go all the way to a 1/32 ounce jig with up to a 2" soft plastic. This approach is proven and in no way is to large for Bluegill fishing. Each angler will have his/her favorite and they should follow their instincts. But for my time and money, bigger gills will take the larger presentations more readily and hopefully cutting down your battles with the "tird" tappers......I just want folks to leave this discussion ready to try some things that they may not have before or may not have considered......

2. Water DEPTH: If the fish are shallow, how can I get my bait to them with the least amount of disruption from the bait entering the water. Smaller gear would create less disturbance entering the water but perhaps you can throw past the strike zone and retrieve your bait to the zone. Perhaps a telescopic pole would be better to just lower the bait into the zone without the accompanied splash and commotion. Again, deeper fish will be impacted less than fish in three feet of water or less. This is a very important consideration that is often overlooked. My belief is that in areas holding catchable fish, an angler can improve quality and numbers with this approach.

3. Water CLARITY: I for one use heavier line with zero negative impact because my waters are dark with very limited visibility. Many anglers will prefer smaller line and I totally understand and would follow the same advice given similar environments. Fish you can see are often easier to spook from surrounding movement. The dark waters provide me an advantage but I still fail very conservative.....If the winds are low, can I remove or down size my weight or float and still catch fish. All things to consider when heading out for gills with your favorite jig.

I will go into more detail in the weeks ahead but feel free to ask any questions you may have. I will discuss weight placement and tipping recommendations in the next couple posts. Good luck and please ask if you have any questions, whether general or specific....Maybe all it will be for you is a subtle change to increase your quality or numbers. I'm not the only successful jig angler on Bigbluegill and I know collectively, we probably have the answer to just about any question you may have......

 

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How do I get the picture to show?

Forgot to mention we are tipping the jigs with Crappie Nibbles and/or pieces of worm.

Here is our biggest Crappie so far, 14” but on the narrow size.

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Hey Kelly -Nice Crappie ! Click the image icon (2nd from left ) or copy and paste your image .This 14" I caught several years ago in April took a Jig with a salted shiner head under a float .14" Salted Fathead Minnow under Float

Oh, thank you. Here is some big perch from spring 2020. that box is 14" wide.

Amazing haul of Jumbo Perch !Great work !Do you recall how deep those Perch were ? Love those critters .Finally caught a PB 14" this past ice Fishing season.

Again a salted shiner head ,this time under a Swedish Pimple spoon .I swear by salted shiners for Crappie , Pickerel, Bass and Perch!14" PB

Jig under float tipped with piece of worm in 4-5 feet of water. I must admit this is a very small private, gravel pit pond that many never fish. In the 3+ years we've fished it never saw another. And only other fish I've caught there are Smallmouth Bass. Alas, I moved from the area last Summer to Southern IL so don't have many perch down here that I know of.

Are you talking the salted shiners one can buy in a bag/pack like at Fleet Farm and other stores? Do they stay on the hook well?

I salt them and freeze them  myself if I have left over from Live bait fishing (Geneally late in the year through ice season ) They stay on the hook fine as long as you are not jigging aggressively .I use it as a cold water period tecnique mostly .  

This is still a great looking Perch John, I love the Winter colors…..

You bet Jeff . Vibrant!

Great bunch of Raccoon Perch Kelly, we also have a pretty good population of these in coastal North Carolina.

Only know them by perch or yellow perch.

Thanks John this is a jealous black crappie!

Yea Jeff this was I think the biggest of 5 caught 12-14"

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