Mar 22, 2010

Spring Practice

Bright, sunny and temps in the high 60s are the daily forecast around here.  Seems more like summer than spring, but in New England just give it time and it will change.  So before the weather changes it is time to get outside and get your spring practice in.  Spring practice in what you might ask, well it all depends on what you like to do and it really doesn't matter either.  Just use these days to work off all the rust from the long winter.  If that means, getting yourself reacquainted with your hiking boots and GPS, then maybe some quick Geocaching trips are in order. If it includes swinging a bat and shagging fly balls, well then break out the old mitt  gather up some friends and hit the park.  If fishing is your thing, then get out your tackle and hit an open pond, lake or stream to work out all the kinks.

This spring practice time offers you the opportunity to get out and take some test runs with your gear that sat all winter or longer before going off into a full fledged adventure.  How many times have you encountered that early spring day and your grab your gear in a frantic rush to take advantage of the early spring weather only to find your batteries in your GPS were dead, or your baseball gloves pocket is broke or you search frantically in your fishing vest for some tippet material only to find the spools empty.  Or worse, a hole in your waders... It may feel like spring but the water in the streams around me are barely breaking 40 and the last thing you want to do is find yourself hours from the car only to find you have a leak in your waders.  brrrrrrrrr,

Well,   I took advantage of the spring practice this week to hit up the little pond at my office where I could work on my fly fishing skills during my lunch break.  The pond at work offers some challenges with the trees and bushes which will cause me to work on my roll casting, as well as offer some open space where I can work on my false casting and distance casting.  Ofcourse, practicing my casting accuracy is part of this ritual spring practice.  It allows me to work on everything from my streamer fishing to my dry fly presentation of achieving that ever so softly drop onto the water of a dry fly.  All I can say was WOW, I'm rusty.

The pond also offers up the opportunity to practice my hook setting , fish fighting and landing techniques on the the large population of Bluegills or sunfish as I affectionately called them when I was growing up.  I'm sure if you have ever fished, then bluegills were something you caught at one time or another and for a small little fish they can be a challenge and loads of fun.  As we grow older and take on new fishing challenges the poor little old bluegill gets forgotten.  Fishing for bluegills can be a lot of fun for the kids and a great way to introduce new comers to fishing.  They are abundant in almost every pond, lake and even some small creeks and it doesn't take a lot of special or expensive equipment or technique to catch, but don't mistake this as them being easy to catch.  Try a light action rod with a light line for some real fun.

Bluegills will spawn from late May into August and during this time, male bluegills will build and defend plate-shaped nests along shorelines and in the warmer water. The females lay eggs in these nests and the males fertilize the eggs, guards them from predators and keep them silt-free by fanning over the eggs with their tails.  The spawning beds are a good sign that you have found quality bluegill waters

Bluegills can be pretty finicky at times so having the right offerings is a must. When it comes to bait of choice (Flies, jigs, live bait), think small because bluegills have very small mouths. If bluegills are hungry a they will bite anything that will fit in their mouths and this could lead to non stop fishing fun for everyone.  Bluegills can be real skittish so make sure to be quiet, walk softly and try not to be seen when approaching your fishing waters.

Now take advantage of the nice weather and get some spring practice in.  I know I will.

Tips on Catching Bluegills


1 comment:

  1. See my blog at
    I spend a lot of time in Eastern CT..Natchaug mostly...and a few other locations.