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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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Love that middle one

Over 17,000 views for this thread................crazy to me!

its a terrific read Jeff !

Read most of the pages ? I too am a float and jig fisherman . Probably my favorite way to spend the day chasing gills . Only difference , my jigs are mostly 1/80th and I use ultralight tackle usually 4# test , but have Been using some 2# a lot this spring .
I tie all of the jigs I use . Most are just chenille bodies with rabbit fur tails . Gillchaser
Oh another thing , I rarely see the need to tip my jigs with anything . Tried some crappie nipples a couple times and didn't see any difference. Gillchaser
I'll be honest I've never been a float fisherman I may have to try it out some this year.

Craig, it's another tool to put into the toolbox!  Right NOW is the best time, IMHO, as you can suspend a bait and let the wind push it around, giving you a really SLOW movement.  This is key, as the fish aren't really chasing bait yet.

Yeah how are those Gapen floats, have you tried them? Thinking I might as well add more more tool. Actually the boy would probably love floats year round for him.

I typically use Comal or Thill floats.  Not sure what a Gapen float is.  Can you enlighten me?

I do not have any of those, yet.  I can get them at Mejier.  Most of them are fairly big, and are intended for Steelhead.  I might have to get some smaller ones and try them for panfish.

THOSE GAPEN FLOATS DO LOOK GOOD;;  BUT IM STAYING WITH MY QUILL FLOATS!!!  QUILL  FLOATS; WERE PROABLY THE FIRST  STEALTH FLOAT MADE;; VERY SENTIVE;;  VERY EASY TO ADJUST THE DEPTH;;  ONLY THING IS;; GETTING GOOD QUALITY QUILLS !!  THE AFRICAN QUILLS ARE THE BEST FOR SIZE NEEDED FOR FISHING;; AND A REAL FUN FLOAT TO WATCH; AS BLUE GILL GO RACING WITH THEM ; THEN SHOOT DOWN LIKE A RUNAWAY TORPEDO !!

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