Erratic weather affects bites

Published 1:32 am Sunday, February 17, 2008

As typical of February we experienced all types of weather this month. Last Saturday we fished in short sleeve shirts.

By Monday it was freezing and I had coveralls on while test driving a boat. Then it warmed up and started raining yesterday.

The bright, cloudless days are good for warming up the water but it can create a tough bite. Lots of male bass have moved shallow and a few big females are cruising around in thin water.

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The females on the move are hard to catch while the little male “buck” bass are easy to catch. When fishing on those bright days I have better luck with a super slow lure presentation and the presentation has to be quite and precise.

As we move on toward the end of this month the big sow bass will be easy to catch and they are full of eggs. Bring along a camera, take pictures and release the spawning fish.

Our lakes get hammered by locals as well as visiting fishermen. By releasing those big females we can be sure that we’ll have fish to catch in the future.

Last Saturday Concordia Bass Club had its monthly tournament on Lake Concordia out of Lakeview Lodge. We had a good turnout and a few nice fish were caught despite the bright skies, high pressure and lack of wind.

The shallows were loaded with small male “buck” bass but most of the big females had yet to move up. Some big fish were shallow but we need a few more days of sunshine and the bass spawn will be wide open on Lake Concordia and most of the other area lakes.

This was my first tournament since we moved back home from Gonzales, La., so most of my man-made brush piles had not been fished in a long time.

I had a fair early bite in the north flats picking up several keepers around 3 to 4 pounds on a Paca Jig with a Zoom trailer fished around logs and cypress trees but no really big fish. I left the flats by mid-morning and made a productive milk run on the main lake picking up a 6.25 fat female fish full of eggs.

She was in about 12 feet of water. I dropped the jig back in the same brush pile and something hit it hard. I set the hook and the fight was on. After a minute or so I knew this was not bass.

About that time a 10 pound flat head catfish broke water. I dipped up the big cat and dropped him in the livewell. I know I preach catch and release but there’s no way I’m going to turn this good-eating catfish loose. That night I did release him in “Lake Crisco.”

I went back to the north flats and picked up another keeper. By then the boats where everywhere and the water was too calm for me so I went back out to the main lake and caught a couple of 4-pound fish and broke one off.

At the scales it was a close race for all places. Junior Book took 4th place with a five bass limit weighing 14.54 pounds. John Bruce had a good day with five at 14.95 pounds. Randy Pitre placed second with a nice limit weighing 19.40 pounds.

I took first place with 20.77 pounds and won the big bass pot with the 6.25 pound bass. It sure felt good to be back home, back on my home waters, catching fish and visiting with all my friends. See y’all on the water.

Eddie Roberts writes a weekly fishing column for The Democrat. He can be reached at