aka Southern Stripes
Spawn run is almost here, what to expect this spring from landlocked linesides.
This was a brutally cold winter, but here in Georgia spring is starting to show its head, here is what to look for.
When the water temperature starts getting back up to around 50, expect these fish to start staging along north lake points close to the river channel, in deep holes along the river banks, rock walls, and bends in slacker current around river bends.
Once the water temp warms even more expect the fish to start making their run. There are many different beliefs in exactly when they run, such as "when the dogwoods bloom" or "first week in April". While some of these rule of thumbs might hold true some years, I believe it matters strictly about water temperatures.
When the water nears 55, expect the run to start hard. Earlier in the run it seems the younger, smaller, and schoolies tend to head up river first.
It seems like the bigger fish tend to head up river a little later, and I am not sure why. If anyone has any ideas on this, I would like to hear your opinions why.
One thing is for sure, this is the time of year to catch a trophy since the egg filled females can gain up to 35% of their normal body weight. Not to mention a slower metabolism due to the cold water and easy meals from dead/dying threadfin shad, it may truly be time for a record lineside.
These fish run way up the river and spawn and can do so very quickly. One tracked striped bass study I read moved 17 miles within a day. (can't remember the source though, else I would post the study.) When the fish are spawning they will not be interested in feeding, but once the ritual is over expect to start catching again.
Some of these fish will move back down river to the main lake immediately after spawning, some will move further up river, and some will stay where they are. A lot of this depends on bait location, oxygen levels in the water and mainly temperature.
When river fishing for linesides, using their primary bait is probably the best choice. If the primary baitfish in their area is bream, then use bream, if it is shad use shad. These fish will stay in a comfortable area based on water temps throughout the summer even if there is no food.
One of the first steps you can make is break out the maps, and soon you will learn trout fishermen can help you a lot. Study local trout streams running into the river and you can bet these areas are holding fish throughout the summer, trout streams stay cold and the fish will be close through the heat of the summer.
Water Temperature is EVERYTHING through out the summer.
Even though river fishing is sometimes done in skinny waters where fishing pressure could be bad for an area, the chances of the fish surviving during release will be much higher with the cooler water temps in the area.
If the same fish if it were caught in a lake it would probably die on a 95 degree day, so as long as the fishermen are responsible and practice catch and release in rivers then the pro and cons would equal out.
If you're looking for a meal please do it in a lake or hybrids.
Last edited by gsxraddict; 02-28-2010 at 12:15 AM.
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