Do you love big bluegill?
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......
Jason...I have had success with the 1 inch sliders. And Federico uses my grass shrimp jigs with a slider to get an unusual wobbling effect that seems to turn big Texas crappie on.
Thanks Larry...what's the outlook for 2013....one of the best ever for Bigbluegill.com is my guess!
Thanks again Larry.....I also spend a lot of time here during the winter and enjoy every minute, but I will soon start pacing the floors getting ready for my favorite time of the year.....They say Buck fever is real and I agree because the symptoms of Bluegill fever are very similar!
J. A. thanks for the info -------- you sure like that color pink -------- About maybe 10% of my jigs / grubs are pink, Guest I'm going to have to stock up more on pink and give it more water time this year. I'll keep you updated on my results using pink. Your last years monthly articles on the color pink was very informative. THANKS
Thank You Wag....you're in the state that it all started for me....Life's turns have lead me to the Carolinas and all the great fishing I have here. My addiction to pink soft plastics and the correlation to grass shrimp was born on the bayou....As long as you have some darkness to the water you fish, I feel the pink jig provides an advantage. In clearer lakes and ponds, I don't think it adds any value and may even lower your fish strikes, just one man's opinion.... I take some nice Goggle-eye here on them so i look forward to hearing and seeing your results. I'm happy anytime at least one person gets something out of my contributions. I still learn things from the newest Bluegill angler out there and I'm thankful for this site to bring our ideas and experience together......
I like to hear that word Goggle-eye ------- that's my favorite
Sa-ca-lait is good to hear also.....I had to catch myself on this site initially using cultural names for fish but it has all worked out.....Crappie have been called something different in every state I have lived...
Looked at that Northland Fishing Tackle site --------- going to order some of their grubs / tails. Like the look of them Scud Bugs.
I hate Northland site, always costs me money
Let us know how they work for you Wag.....Tony Livingston gets the credit for turning me on to Northland.....I really like the sizes of their baits.
Just looked at your box of bobbers. Have you ever tried the English/European floats such as wagglers and quill's for jigs. They tend to be much more functional to lighter bits and fewer lost fish because of there aerodynamic design. Bobbers have a higher resistence to bites due to the body size and water surface pressure. I have been using floats for a few years now and found I have a higher catch rate then traditional bobbers. I don't know how many fellow 'gill fisherman use floats over bobbers, but I know they cast further and make less of a splash.
I have them but I don't fish them much.....your points are very good and it is definitely worth looking into......Thanks for sharing Craig....