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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anybody here fish for them on a rod and reel? I don't have a shad net, but with the masses of them going up the river it seems like they would be easy to catch if you knew how to do it.
BB in SC
 

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Bill, we fish for the American and Hickory shad down my way, on the Santee & Cooper rivers, mainly. Try using a 1/8 - 1/4 oz. crappie jig on light line (3-6#) with a piece of split buckshot a foot or two ahead of the jig, as needed to get down in the current. I like to cast out into the current and allow the jig to sink near bottom, then slowly reel in, with an occasional pause. You may need to try different depths, too. They seem to prefer the bottom on clear days, but the muddy water or wind can keep them in all different depths sometimes.
As for colors, I prefer a red head jig with a chartreuse curly tail grub, but they will hit all different colors. As muddy as the river is up there right now, darker or fluorescent colors may be better. Be patient; they move in schools a lot, and may sometimes come in waves of action, then a lull. Let us know if you have any luck. I've gotta go up that way tomorrow; just might try some of them if I can find a place out of the current.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well, according to my sonar, they are traveling at 3 to 7 feet in depth in massive numbers. Should be easy to catch. Sure gonna try 'em!
BB in SC
 

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Bill - don't know exactly whatyou are seeing on your sonar, but it could also be the herring. They will hit a jig now and then, but a sabiki rig works better for the herring to collect some for biat (when the sahd and herring are in the rivers, there's no better bait). You can get a sabiki at most tackle shops around the coast or near the shad hotspots (like Moncks Corner).

If you haven't seen one, they have a bunch or little "flies along a line with a loop or snap for a sinker at the bottom. You tie on the rig, add a sinker to the bottom and jig it gently where you think there's bait.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes, I guess they could be herring. All I know is that I see an occasional silver fish jump, and the shad guys have been netting a few. Last Saturday when the water was 49 degrees the sonar was devoid of life and that changed drastically this week when the water temp rose up. I've read about the sabiki rig, and will get some to try! Thanks!
Bill in SC
BTW, the sabiki rig is good for shad or herring, correct?
 

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You can catch shad on a sabiki, but they are usually made of rather light line with little tiny hooks, so they are not ideal for 2 to 4 pound shad, but are perfect for herring - sometimes you can pyll the herring up 5 or 6 at a time. For shad a 1/8 oz jig head with a 2 inch chartreuse curly tail is the standard lure at the Tailrace. Herring will hit this jig sometimes, too, but it's a little big for them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well, I prefer live bream, but shad and/or herring work great! I was told to put shad or herring in a round tank to keep them from running into the sides and killing themselves. I just want some to freeze and use as cut bait. Live ones would be ok too, but I have no round bait tank.
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do you guys perfur herring or shad for big cats?
Wildcat,I'd say whatever was the most predominant bait where you are fishing.If they aint no herring in the lake I'd use the shad,but if the lake is full of herring,and very few shad,I;d use the herring.I fish lake wateree and there are very very few herring(some will argue there is NO herring in wateree lake but a lot has been turned loose by guys cleaning out the bait tank and I have caught a few in my cast net)I have used herring in that lake with very little success,I think the fish eats shad on a regular basis and thats what he's looking for..just my 2 cents worth.
 
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