My surefire way to catch Shad

Discussion in 'Shad Talk' started by tbull, Dec 16, 2007.

  1. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    I recently recieved a PM from another member, and have had many questions about catching Shad, and I thought I would give some tips and advice that have made most of my trips succesful, I very rarely do not have any shad, and here is what I do that may be a little different.

    -I get much of my Shad from the Little Miami River here in Ohio. I take my approach a little different than others, and some may do this as well. Usually when I arrive at the river, I dont begin throwing all over the place, and I learned that the hard way. I may spend up to 20 or 30 minutes just surveying the area, I knew I had to change my tactics because I just wasn't producing the amount of quality bait I should be. For those of you in different states, the Little Miami is a fairly long but small river, and for the main part it is very shallow. I am sure many of you have rivers like this that hold Shad in your areas, its more of a large creek in my opinion.

    -What I am looking for are dark cloudy areas, that otherwise would not be there. Usually I am wading through the shallows very slowly, looking for these areas. My last trip last month I did this for 15 minutes or so, and stumbled upon a huge black mass, I was literally 1 foot away from them, in 2 ft of water and they didnt even budge.When the water temp drops in the LMR, the shad seem to become less mobile, and not as skiddish. I actually thought is was vegeation at first glance because there were so many, threw the net on top and it instantly filled to the brim. They moved on after I got a bunch, so I started again, walking slowly around the shallows until I spotted the dark cloud, threw again, and then I was finished. I normally freeze my shad that I get before winter, simply because I don't get out to catch as many when it gets fridged, in the Spring and Summer I dont keep as many because I like fresh bait before each trip, its just easier to go ahead a freeze them for me during the winter months. Long story short I had enough shad to last me until spring with 2 throws. Look in the calmer waters off to the side after a shallow run off for the school, or even directly under a small run off. I think many may call these slack water areas. And obvioulsy this tactic goes out the window during high water levels when the current is raging like something you would see on a white water canoe trip...LOL

    -The next time you go out to get shad, try this if you haven't already. Some places I understand you really dont have a choice but to throw and pray, and some of you may already have a honey hole that produces that way. Just walk through and observe, you may be suprised how much easier and quicker it is to score a mess of bait. Lots of times in small rivers like that, the Shad are usually holdong together in that way, it is very rare I find them spread out 2 here and 2 there. You may be scaring the schools off throwing all over the place in bodies of water like that, and in the end making it even more difficult to find that bait.

    - I hope this may help some in your quest to get some bait, I know the last thing I want to do is go out and throw the net 100 times and end up with 2 shad. Try this and see if it doesn't work, I think you will be presentley suprised.:wink:
     
  2. massa_jorge

    massa_jorge New Member

    Messages:
    2,137
    State:
    TEXAS
    i do the same thing around tailraces; if possible it amkes more sense to throw at shad that you can see. another thing that works good is watching calm water for dimples in the surface.
     

  3. joadb

    joadb Member

    Messages:
    286
    State:
    Clinton, Ohio,
    i have spot up here that i use where a pipe dumps into a feeder creek which dumps into the lake after about twenty yards.this time of year i usually start where the feeder dumps into the lake and "walk" the shad back to the pipe where i throw the cast net a them.last year i caught a season worth of shad with one throw.i catch more,larger shad this time of year than i do all year long.they are very active up here right now.thanks for the thread tbull.i wouldnt even know where to start to look on the river other than dams or feeders.
     
  4. alands94

    alands94 Active Member

    Messages:
    1,706
    State:
    Lebanon, I
    Thanks for the tip. I'll try that on a local river this year.
     
  5. H2O Mellon

    H2O Mellon New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    Ohio
    TBull,

    I'm assuming your getting them from the lower Little Miami, right? There seems to be only a small amount of them in our area (Montgomery, Greene Counties)
     
  6. CincyCat

    CincyCat New Member

    Messages:
    60
    State:
    Ohio
    All good advice and I'll add that when I can't see the "cloud" I will look for even one little shad to give away the location of the whole school by breaking the surface. I normally net off a long dock in a marina and I find it better to walk as long as I need too until I see a sign before throwing.
     
  7. tncatfishing

    tncatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    916
    State:
    clk. tn
    Some good advice there. I look for shallow slack water, or for more of a rocky area close in has produced when other ways have not.
     
  8. dust777man

    dust777man New Member

    Messages:
    536
    State:
    SC
    Great advice for catching shad!
     
  9. tnkatman

    tnkatman New Member

    Messages:
    846
    State:
    Bluff City, TN
    Thanks for posting this good advice.
     
  10. bwhupp

    bwhupp New Member

    Messages:
    1,680
    State:
    Belleville
    Great advice. I hope I can find some masses of darkness like that in the river!
     
  11. river scum

    river scum New Member

    Messages:
    3,474
    State:
    hooterville indiana
    sounds like a plan bro thx, would have reped ya if i could for that.
     
  12. JJ42

    JJ42 New Member

    Messages:
    9
    State:
    South Carolina
    That's some good advice right there ,thank's .:wink:
     
  13. rockfordflathunter

    rockfordflathunter New Member

    Messages:
    142
    State:
    rockford,illino
    Great post cant wait to try it
     
  14. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Messages:
    5,723
    State:
    Ohio
    Very good advise, I also use that method.
     
  15. ArmyCatfish

    ArmyCatfish New Member

    Messages:
    210
    State:
    Georgia
    thanks for the tips
     
  16. catfishrollo

    catfishrollo New Member

    Messages:
    6,894
    State:
    Ohio
    good advice travis, thanks for the tips...rollo:big_smile:
     
  17. Goofy

    Goofy Member

    Messages:
    58
    State:
    Moline, Illinois
    That helps a lot Travis I know right where I'll use it as soon as the hard water leaves. Informative post.
     
  18. Muskrat24

    Muskrat24 New Member

    Messages:
    53
    State:
    Ohio
    Thanks for the tip. Will have to check out the river in my area.
     
  19. Shreveport Mike

    Shreveport Mike New Member

    Messages:
    104
    State:
    louisiana
    Very good advice. Thanks
     
  20. Dave53

    Dave53 New Member

    Messages:
    411
    State:
    Lonedell M
    What kind of advice can you guys give to finding the larger shad? We have a creek in my area that flows to the river and in the spring and summer has a large amount of shad in it. However, somedays all you can catch are the small one or two inch shad. How do you guys locate large shad--6 to 10" ones. What, if any, do you look for different? This creek is strange and maybe I need to look for the dark mass. During the winter I can't seem to find a dozen shad after 20 throws with my casting net. But during the spring and summer they are everywhere..but most are very small.