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Spawn fishing for bass is an interesting and often times tricky way to fish. While spawning, bass hang out in shallower waters and can be spotted easily, giving you a false sense of ability to catch. Getting spawning bass to take your regular bait can be hard to do as they aren’t focused on feeding like normal.

Although you can see spawning bass in shallow, clear waters, they can also see you. Switching up your lures and using bait that sticks out can help your chances of landing one. While they eat a lot less when protecting their nest, that doesn’t mean they won’t bite at an enticing lure that is put in the right spot. I would recommend using a spinner, crank bait or even live bait to stick out and get noticed.

Looking for a good spot to fish for spawning bass can be tricky as well, depending on what type of creek, river or pond you’re fishing. I always like to look for a cove with a pebbled or flattened bottom so you can see the bass and get close enough to them without being detected (whether on boat or land). Once you spot a nest, its good to look for the bass’ shadows if there’s enough sunlight. If you are quiet enough, you can get to a nice spot without spooking these extra careful fish and stay for quite a while.

Things to bring while fishing for spawning bass:

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1. Polarized glasses: Really, these are helpful for any type of fishing, but because you can actually see the bass in shallow waters when they’re spawning (with polarized sunglasses of course), wearing them is essential to spotting shadows and the fish themselves.

Costa sunglasses are the best polarized shades money can buy >>>

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2. Bait: Like I mentioned above, a spinner, crankbait or live bait are best for catching spawning bass in the Spring.

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3. A sturdy reel and pole: Males are extra aggressive during spawning season towards foreign objects. While it may be harder to catch their attention when it comes to them feeding, they may be hard to reel in if you set your hook into an aggressive male. On top of that, the females may be larger than what you’re used to during non-spawning seasons.

Try a Tactical Series Bass Rod made in Texas by TFO >>> paired with a Quantum Smoke reel >>>

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4. A cooler: Yeti, Icehole, Igloo or whatever your preference. Make sure you have a cooler on hotter Spring days as fishing for spawning bass can take a while and you want to stay hydrated (whether you prefer water for your hydration, or the more unorthodox beer hydration, that’s your prerogative.)

Yeti Hoppers are perfect for bank or boat fishing >>>

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5. Patience: A calm demeanor and patience are key for all fishing, but especially when you’re waiting to hit that perfect bedding while fishing for these spawning bass. You have to be cool, calm and collected to be successful, so keep your cool!

No matter what your preference, always remember to be careful when fishing for spawning bass. As fun and rewarding as it can be, doing so should be handled with care. It’s often debated whether or not catching spawn fishing is the right thing to do as many careless anglers end up accidentally (or on purpose in some cases) killing off large portions of bass populations by keeping the spawning females out of water for too long and depriving them of too much oxygen.

Remember to catch and release most of the time when fishing for spawning bass to avoid those problems, and check out our tutorial on best practices for releasing healthy fish.

Spring is right around the corner, so go out and fish!

Weston Wilson
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