Okay, what am I doing wrong?

Discussion in 'Bluegill Fishing' started by dburkhead, May 7, 2009.

  1. dburkhead

    dburkhead New Member

    Messages:
    51
    State:
    Indiana
    I see people talking of bringing in catches of 20, 30, 40 or more bluegill, or big stringers of cats or crappie and I generally manage to get a couple of modest sized bluegill.

    I've tried a number of different places--at least where I can get access (lots of small ponds or streams that aren't "navigable" on private property here so that's a no-go without permission and I don't know any of these people, no more do they know me).

    I've tried a number of different baits and lures (nightcrawlers, red wigglers, waxworms, small spoons and spinners, plastic grubs on jig heads, and so on) and had the best luck, such as it is, with bits of nightcrawler on a #6 or #8 hook.

    I don't have a boat, nor a place to park one if I could afford to buy one so I'm limited to the shore. A large portion of this also is that my daughter (5) likes to go fishing with daddy so extended hiking or really long drives are out as well (my wife doesn't go, so having my daughter get bored in the car on a long drive with only one parent along can turn a pleasant trip into a nightmare).

    Is there something I may be missing here, or doing wrong, or do the above constraints mean that I am doomed to pitiful catches?
     
  2. catman-j

    catman-j New Member

    Messages:
    1,020
    State:
    Eastern Nebr
    I would think the red wigglers and wax worms would get you plenty of bluegills. Try a slip bobber so you can fish deeper. Try planning an outing that involves doing something besides fishing. Then she'll have something to look forward too like sight seeing then sneek in a little fishing too.
     

  3. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    I ALWAYS find gills on eddys in the river. Wax worms, or earthworms, as stated would be the bait of choice. I can easily catch 30 gills in 20 minutes with a couple of us fishin' for 'em. Farm ponds are easy to catch them as well. Try different depths and strategies. Fishin' on the bottom with no cork produces sometimes too. I have lots of fun catchin' bait! BTW: I use a little itty bitty wire hook to catch bait, when you get hung, they easily srtaighten out. Also, they will catch the tiniest bait, to titty size bream. I don't know what part of Indiana you are in, but PM drpepper. He has a farm pond and you may be near to him. He can surely steer you to gills in your area.

    Bill in SC
     
  4. lforet2002

    lforet2002 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,534
    State:
    Tennessee
    Have you tried crickets??? I've always caught the bigger gills on crickets..I also like to use a tube jig tipped with nightcrawler under a cork..Its best to use a small weight less cork when fishing for gill..A misconception that people make about gills is that there always shallow..I catch the big gills deep with a 1/16 crawfish jig bounced off the bottom..It could also be if your catching lots of little guys the the fish are over populated and there growth is stunted..
     
  5. dburkhead

    dburkhead New Member

    Messages:
    51
    State:
    Indiana
    It's not a matter of catching "lots of little guys." It's getting one or two moderate sized fish (and I put this in "bluegills" mainly because that's mostly what I catch but I don't do any better with anything else) and that's it.
     
  6. lforet2002

    lforet2002 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,534
    State:
    Tennessee
    I see..Well maybe you are fishing bad areas where the gill population is low..I don't see any flaws in your technique... I do all the same techniques as every one to catch gills and can always catch at least 20 pretty much any where I go..If there not biting in one of my spots I move to another..You just gotta keep searching till you find a good spot..
     
  7. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    Bluegill beds are typically in 4 foot deep or more water.
    Crickets for bluegill and earth worms for shellcracker.
    That is unless you fly fish. Flyfishing I like to use a wet fly. A tiny black gnat.
    It sinks very slow and is irresistable.

    My nephew was fishing in a bream tournament a few weeks ago on the Neuse river. He was catching them 15 feet deep. Large ones.

    In ponds I stay away from the banks. That's where the peckerheads are.
    I fish deeper water. Once you locate them it's on. You'll fill a stringer with ease.
     
  8. dburkhead

    dburkhead New Member

    Messages:
    51
    State:
    Indiana
    The place I go most is an Indiana DNR "public fishing area" that's supposedly stocked with various fish. It's a 5 acre pond of which about half the shore is within "casting distance" of someplace where one can fish from the shore.

    I've, variously, caught bluegill (usually 1-2 per trip, generally quickly, then nothing), crappie (1, about 8-9"), and largemouth bass (1, about 10-11"--below legal keeping size).

    The main reason I go here is:

    1) It's free.
    2) It's only about 15 minutes from my house.

    I had another spot at the north end of Eagle Creek Reservoir, where the creek runs into the lake (and I'm not sure whether that part counts as "lake" or "creek") There was a place where you could pull off the road beside the bridge over it and climb down to the water staying on public property the whole time. I could usually catch a few tiny-small bluegill (4-6 inches), and the occassional nice white bass. Unfortunately the bridge got tore down (presumably to be replaced) so there's no more access to that spot.

    There's the reservoir park area itself--$5 to get in and not much of the shore readily accessible when I'm there with a 5 year old.

    There's the White River, but (although it's been cleaned up quite a bit in recent years) it's polluted enough that fish caught there are not safe to eat for "at risk" people (children and women of childbearing years), and not safe for adult males to eat too often.

    After that, it starts to get hard to find places to fish within an hour or two. There's lots of water--small streams, retention ponds, farm ponds, but I don't know anybody and I've always felt really, really awkward just asking people I don't know--and that awkwardness shows and people respond to it, almost invariably with a "no."

    This is very frustrating.
     
  9. dburkhead

    dburkhead New Member

    Messages:
    51
    State:
    Indiana
    "Peckerheads"? Um. Best I can find in an online search is a "any fiddler cat." And the best I could find with that was "small catfish that "fiddle" with the bait.
     
  10. bluefish1928

    bluefish1928 New Member

    Messages:
    52
    State:
    South Carolina
    beetlespin lures are probably the best lures for panfish ir u want to use lures
     
  11. Poppa

    Poppa New Member

    Messages:
    1,233
    State:
    Pinson, Al
    If you are fishing bedding bluegills the bigger gills bed in the same area
    as little ones only they are usually in deeper water.
     
  12. DANNYfrmINDY

    DANNYfrmINDY New Member

    Messages:
    194
    State:
    Martinsville, Indiana
    Here in central Indiana i have found that bee-moths are one of the best baits for gills. You can usally get them any where nightcrawlers are sold. I would try maybe finding a small retetion pond or farm pond and asking to fish it. Whats the worst that can happen? They say no and you move on to the next one.

    If you want we could hook up( I'm just south of Indy) and i could take you and the family to some real nice small ponds that are eaisly accessable.
     
  13. bnorth

    bnorth New Member

    Messages:
    539
    State:
    Indiana
    I've found about two hours after sunrise or 2 hours before sunset the gills turn on & I fish a bit deeper for the bigger fish. Might be that since your fishing a small, public access pond that it is just over fished. There's a few public ponds near me that fit the bill for that, I have to go out there at the most odd times to catch fish...like 9am on a Tuesday morning. No one else around then to pressure them.

    You might wanna consider getting out to some new spots without your daughter to scout more quickly...then when you find a few that produce you can take her back.
     
  14. dburkhead

    dburkhead New Member

    Messages:
    51
    State:
    Indiana
    The Causeway across Eagle Creek Reservoir at 56th Street was recommended to me. Specifically the north side at both the east and west ends. I went down to try it out this morning (first trip by myself since I wanted to check that I was comfortable taking my daughter there first).

    Northeast end: Couldn't find any place to park. The driveway into the park office is posted "park office visitors only." While, if it were just me, I could park further away and hike up there, that's not really doable with a 5 year old. Thus, no fishing there.

    Northwest corner: Gate wasn't open yet when I got there, but there is that small parking area just outside it. Starting in the very corner and working out along the causeway, from about 7:30 to about 9:30, I caught 4 bluegill (4-5 inches long) and 3 small white bass or stripers (not too sure of the ident) in the 4-6" category. One I ran out of worms I switched to crickets on one line and a 1/8 oz jig head with a split-tailed something or other (not sure what it's called) that was brown with gold flecks. Nothing on the crickets. Caught one small largemouth (about 8 inches). After that (about 9:30), I stayed with the crickets on the bobber line (only live bait I had left) and plastic worms on the other however I got nothing for the next hour after which I went home.

    Total: 3 hours. 8 fish caught. All of them too small to keep (either legal limits on the largemouth or just not worth keeping).

    Spoke to some others who were out there: apparently a few days ago someone was pulling in fish "hand over fist" in that corner, and somebody else was nailing crappie out a bit along the causeway.

    "Jam yesterday and jam tomorrow, but it's never jam today."
     
  15. catman-j

    catman-j New Member

    Messages:
    1,020
    State:
    Eastern Nebr
    I just caught a few bluegill last night and one of them was full of eggs. I'm just wondering how long it would be from the time the female fills up her egg sack until she lays her eggs.
     
  16. REBELYELL1861

    REBELYELL1861 New Member

    Messages:
    33
    State:
    TX
    THROW NET AN BREAD

    THROW BREAD CRUMBS OR EGGSHELLS, DICED HOTDOGS ECT WAIT ABOUT 30 SECONDS AND THROW THE NET RIGHT ON TOP OF WHERE U CHUNKED THE BAIT, USUALLY PRODUCES GOOD NUMBERS FOR ME
     
  17. kyredneck

    kyredneck New Member

    Messages:
    1,021
    State:
    Kentucky
    Bee-moths; i assume you're referring to bee-moth larvae which are waxworms; I've never heard them called that but it's exactly what they are.

    I had 5 hives at one time and the wax moth was something you always had to be careful of. Had them lay eggs in some frames that I had extracted honey from once, and there were all kinds of tiny waxworms eating the honeycomb when I finally got back to it; ruined the combs, had to put new foundation in the frames.

    --------------------

    mini jig spinners like the beetle spin tipped with waxworm are ALWAYS deadly for gills. I like to use # 10 & # 12 hooks for bait size gills. Works like a charm.
     
  18. mmarcum6

    mmarcum6 New Member

    Messages:
    599
    State:
    Tenneessee
    David my first suggestion would be. If there are accessable ponds close to you and you feel your way or personality when asking is a problem take the 5 year old along when asking. Ask specifically if you can take your daughter fishing in their pond and tell them up front you will not make a mess and will only remove what ever fish is OK with them.

    I grew up in a small town in KY with only a few ponds close to where I lived with the best being owned by doctor Evans. Everyone told us you can't fish that pond Doc Evans wont allow it. I talked to my Dad and he said go ask him yourself. My friend and I went and finally had the courage to ask and were given his blessing. The only thing he ask is we would make sure and close any gates we opened and pick up after ourselves. We not only picked up after ourselves but everyone else to keep this place open to us to fish. The big difference was when the Doctor left to go somewhere we waved at him and all the others had to run and hide. Never under estimate some one, and I'm sure with your daughter along with you more will say yes than no.

    I won't cover bait as all that has been covered.
     
  19. tncatfishing

    tncatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    916
    State:
    clk. tn
    If you don't catch anything in the first 5 or ten minutes move. It is what I do when I go to cross creeks in cumberland city. When my main spot for bluegills is not producing I pack up and move to the next spot and so on.
     
  20. JEFFRODAMIS

    JEFFRODAMIS New Member

    Messages:
    2,537
    State:
    TEXAS
    couple of you said fish deep, i have never had a problem catching gills but a few weeks ago i woulda said your crazy lol, but week before last i was trying to catch some crappie in about 20 feet on a tiny jig and be damned if i wasnt catching big gills lol, first time id ever caught any in deep water, and they were all 6-8 inches..to me thats a LOT more fun that catchin 9-12" crappie all day.