Question on schooling blues

Discussion in 'Blue Catfishing' started by cathog, Feb 2, 2009.

  1. cathog

    cathog New Member

    Messages:
    855
    State:
    Lone Oak Texas
    Right now on the lake that I primarily fish, the small blues are in huge schools in the deeper water. It has been like this for the last 2 weeks. My question is this, what can i do to eliminate the small blue bite and catch the bigger ones. I have already upsized baits, but a 5 pound blue will hit anything a 50 pounder will hit. Before the smaller fish showed up I was boating several 30 to 50 pound fish in these areas. I know the bigger ones are still there, because I will catch one every 10th fish or so. My big fish numbers are down and I have seen more small fish than I have seen since I was fishing for the small ones in October. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated, even though I sound spoiled:smile2:.
     
  2. cathog

    cathog New Member

    Messages:
    855
    State:
    Lone Oak Texas
    By the way it is not uncommon for every rod in the boat to go down at the same time with 2 to 5 pound fish. It is fun, but the problem is I have to spend 20 minutes of fishing time untangling everything before I can get the rods back in the water to catch more fish. Those big schools of small blues are driving me crazy. I might just have to bring my cooler and start fileting the little ones. :smile2: I still like to target the big fish this time of year.
     

  3. rwilley3

    rwilley3 New Member

    Messages:
    1,389
    State:
    Brighton, Tenne
    That does sound like a problem:crazy: I understand about liking to catch the big ones myself but around here this time of year I will about take anything but as far as your problem I am betting the big ones are just somewhere else. I don't think the really big ones hang out exactly where the smallers ones do. Hope you get it figured out but if not like you said take a cooler and eliminate some of them if you can't do anything else.:smile2:
     
  4. whisker maniac

    whisker maniac New Member

    Messages:
    2,712
    State:
    arkansas
    Gary, .. Are you fishing on the bottom or are the little fish hitting the bait before it gets to the bottom???
     
  5. cathog

    cathog New Member

    Messages:
    855
    State:
    Lone Oak Texas
    Bottom mostly Kevin, but they will hit it on the way down sometimes. Actually the baits are up off of the bottom 2 to 3 ft.
     
  6. bluehunter

    bluehunter New Member

    Messages:
    3,004
    State:
    Los Angele
    What are you using for bait? I found that the head portions of my cut bait cut towards the fin helps elimnate some of the smaller fish. You can also try fishing another spot thats devoid of a lot of the smaller cats and concentrate on the other areas that will hold more bruisers.
     
  7. JimmyJonny

    JimmyJonny Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,059
    State:
    sc
    Thats pretty common here also. IMO the bigger fish usually aren't around when the dinks are. Very rare will I catch any cats over 5 or 6 pounds when smaller fish are there. All I can say is enjoy them or make a move. I bank fish so I usually just go with the flow. I can catch dinks all night then go to the exact same spot the next night and catch #20 plus fish. Personally I think the bigger ones don't like to be annoyed by the smaller ones. Reminds me of eating lunch at McDonalds in the play are.....I hate it, LOL.

    Ps, dont rule out shallow water either. This past week I caught 4 fish from #13-#30 in 10' of water in a creek..off the bank. The #30 I got last night, my Pb. To many folks think the cats all go deep during winter.... it just isnt true.
     
  8. cathog

    cathog New Member

    Messages:
    855
    State:
    Lone Oak Texas
    Yeah i fished shallow on sunday, and didnt catch any little ones, just no real big ones, i was posting this to see if i could get some other things i havent thought of. I did get a 21,17 and 10 shallow sunday. I was also using big head pieces off of shad and gills bigger than my hand the 5 pounders had no problems with them. Tried some 9 or 10 inch filets also.
     
  9. SkiMax

    SkiMax New Member

    Messages:
    2,012
    State:
    Rising Sun, IN
    Are you marking larger arcs on your depth finder or is it just a school of these smaller arcs? I would check your graph to see what is down there. If the larger arcs aren't present, go find them! The bigger fish tend to move with the bigger baitfish so I would try just cruising around til you mark larger arcs or a big ball of baitfish. Do a little searching before you drop the rods and you could very well find those bigger fish again!
     
  10. rythymroach

    rythymroach New Member

    Messages:
    465
    State:
    United States
    If you have a sonar scan for suspendedfish and try a float rig to present the bait at the proper depth.
    Trophy Blues often suspend on baitfish such as shad and herring, at times if frogs are plentiful they will work topwater as well.
    One of the best ways I have found for catching big blues is fishing off deep ledges during the winter months.
    If bottom fishing is not producing the size cats you are targeting within a reasonable amount of time, watch for surface activity( particularly in summer and near dawn or dusk)
    Trobpy blues behave musch like striped bass, they feed primarily on shad, herring, and other schooling highly mobile baitfish. consequently they are more migratory than other cat species and found more frequently in open water habitat.
    The upside is just as the smaller blues school together so will the bigger ones school together!! Which means a great day fishing when bait and size category are united.
    I's suggest coming off the bottom say ten ft at a time and check to see if my theory is accurate, I believe they will consistently produce the bigger blues for you. '
    As always wish you the best "good fishing"
     
  11. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    All great points, from my experience on the Ohio, whenever we boat multiple big fish they come in bunches. And very rarely will we catch dinks in the same hole if we are busting the big ones. But of course the exception is not the rule. I have found the big blues will travel together, feed heavy and move on as quickly as they arrived. Every fish over 40lbs that we have boated have came in numbers, only caught 1 blue over 40 that seemed to be "alone". I agree with the previous poster, just look for larger fish arches that is what I do. I usually dont even bother to set up on a hole with hundreds of small arches, just from the fear of being pecked to death by another smaller species. Even though sometimes big daddy will come cruising by and suprise us all!:wink: