Whitesburg KY

Gabby’s fishing fever

Bluegill fishing fun for all

Summertime is a time when many people go to the lakes. Some go to fish, and a lot of the fisherman will be fishing for bluegill.

A lot of people can remember the first fish they ever caught as a child, and most of them most likely caught a bluegill. Bluegill can be found just about everywhere and is one of the hardest fighting fish for its size. You can cast a bait to a spot and a bluegill will hit it and if you set the hook and miss the fish, it will come back and hit the bait several times. This makes bluegill one of the most aggressive fish there is.

Most bluegill are small and about hand sized. But some bluegill are much bigger, like the hybrid or shell cracker bluegills. These fish can grow to over a foot long and weigh several pounds. These are trophy-size bluegill, found mostly in ponds and smaller lakes. If you have ever had the pleasure of catching one of these giant bluegill, then you know just how strong and powerful these fish are. Bluegill is one of the best-tasting fish you will ever eat.

Bluegill, because of its aggressive nature, is a perfect fish for first-time fishermen and kids or anybody just wanting to do some fun fishing. Bluegill will start feeding in early spring as soon as the shallow water is warm enough to move into, and they will stay active till late fall and into early winter. Bluegill mostly feed during the daylight hours. They will feed from the surface all the way to the bottom. I have caught big bluegill out of water over 30 feet deep before.

I feel that in a area holding bluegill, the biggest bluegill in the group — called bull bluegills — will hold in the deeper water on the best cover. If you can get your bait down through the swarm of smaller bluegill and into the deeper water, I believe you will have a better chance of catching bigger bluegill. The best way to do this is by placing weight on your line. Simply place a couple of split shot sinkers above your hook. Place them about a foot above your hook. This will not interfere with the hook or action of the bait. Use a light action rod with a limber tip. Use a spin cast or spinning reel with small 4- to 6-pound test line. The clear line will work best.

As for hooks, as long as they are small they will work. Some fisherman prefer a long shank hook so you can remove a deep set hook easier, while some like the short shank better because the fish see only the bait and not the wire of the hook. My favorite hook rig is the snelled hooks. These come pre-rigged on a short, clear line leader. You just simply tie them on.

As for bait, you can use red worms, meal worms, nightcrawlers, crickets or minnows, or just about any small piece of meat or bread. Some fishermen like to use a floater and some don’t. I like to use a floater to tell me what the bluegill is doing during a bite or a run.

Look for areas with wood, rock or weed cover to start your fishing. Manmade fish attractors and brushpiles are great places to bluegill fish. Also when the sun comes up bright, bluegill will hold around the shady side of a boat dock.

The next time you want to get somebody started fishing or just have a fun day out yourself, give bluegill fishing a try.

Check out my fishing site at Myspace/gabbysfishingfever or e-mail me at gabbysfishingfever@yahoo.com.

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