Cooler temps bring good fishing

Published 12:31 am Sunday, October 14, 2007

Thanks to cooler temperatures at night, the fish activity picked up big time this week. The increase in fish feeding in the shallows is just the beginning of good things to come. Water temps have dropped several degrees. The shad have moved up and the bass, stripers and crappie are biting better now than they have in months.

Yesterday morning I caught a 6-pound bass and several smaller fish on top water lures. The fish didn’t mess around. They hit the surface lure hard.

October is a good month to catch bass on top water lures but don’t rule out running baits and bottom lures. Let the fish tell you what they want. One day the surface lures will produce but the top water bite can shut off as fast as it started.

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A host of lures will catch bass in the fall. If the fish aren’t looking up try running baits like a Bill Lewis Rat-L-Trap in shad or bream patterns. Keep an eye out for shad flicking around on the surface or herons feeding in shallow water. Fan cast the Rat-L-Trap in these areas and you’ll catch some bass.

Small crankbaits like Bomber’s 6A and 7A or a Bandit 100 or 200 series will catch numbers of smaller bass. If you’re after a trophy bass stick with large top water lures early and late and jigs with a big plastic trailer. If it’s cloudy and/or raining you can catch big bass during the middle of the day on surface lures as well.

The Old Rivers at Deer Park, Minorca and Yucatan are landlocked from any influence by the Mississippi Raiver. This happens when the river is low and the level at Natchez is extremely low. Today’s river stage is 10.1 feet with a slight rise coming down river.

The rise will not be enough to connect the Old River bend lakes with the river. The stage at Natchez will have to be around 14 feet before that happens. The crappie and bass fishing should be good on the Old Rivers. Low water level leaves much of the cover high and dry and what little cover remains in the water should hold fish.

Lakes Concordia, St. John and Bruin are in great shape for the bass fishermen. Try top water lures early and late. Jigs pitched to the shallow cypress trees will produce some nice bass. As the water continues to cool down the Rat-L-Trap bite will improve. Try bream or shad pattern Traps in the open areas between the piers.

Your best bet for crappie is Turkey Creek. Fish the lay downs and isolated cypress trees in the mid lake areas. Turkey Creek is home to some huge slab crappie but don’t fish near the many duck blinds during hunting season.

The big bass are biting here as well. Try the upper half of the lake and target the moss beds and big cypress trees with top waters, jigs and spinnerbaits.

Eddie roberts writes a weekly fishing colum for the Democrat. He can be reached at