Warmer water means better bites

Published 12:36 am Sunday, April 27, 2008

The crappie bite is on at Horseshoe Lake. I just saw an ice chest full of huge slab crappie. They’re catching the fish around the bamboo and cane that fishermen stick in the lake.

Some of the outside cypress trees in 4 to 5 feet of water are holding some big crappie as well. For some reason the fish in Horseshoe Lake tend to spawn later than fish in our other area lakes.

The crappie are staging now and those fish holding in deeper water will probably make the move to thin water any day now. We are selling a lot of live shiners and crickets at our place in Vidalia and most are headed to Horseshoe Lake.

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The jig bite is good as well. Try the Tiny Shad in shad colors or the latest and greatest from Southern Pro Lures the Crappie Stinger. The neat thing about fishing this lake is if the bite is slow you can run back up Workinger Bayou and fish the bayou is if the wind is bad or fish the deeper waters of Black River Lake.

If you head in the other direction from Horseshoe Lake you can fish Cross and Concodrie Bayous. All these waters offer some excellent bass, white perch and a virtually unmolested population of bream.

The catfish bite is still good on Lakes St. John and Concordia. Try cold worms for the catfish. The big news on these two lakes is the bream.

The bream start bedding on the land-locked oxbow lakes once the surface water temperatures reach 70 degrees and stays at 70 or above for about a week. That’s exactly what happened this past week.

We had warm weather and the bream have made the move to shallow water to spawn. Crickets work best but sometimes red worms or the short but fat Euro worms will out fish crickets especially on the larger bream.

If you’re having trouble with the small fish stealing your bait just fish deeper, right off the bottom. The larger bream tend to hold below the smaller fish.

The bass activity has been horrible this month but that has changed as well. The water has warmed up and top water bite is hot.

Try surface lures like buzz baits, Zara Spooks, Pop R’s of anyone of the many chuggers, walking baits or poppers.

Conditions are shaping up for May to be an excellent month on our area lakes. Please keep only what you need and release the rest and help us keep our lakes and roads clean by not littering.

The pleasure boaters will join the mix of boats this coming month so please practice safe boating and make this an accident free boating season.

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