Weather / barometer

Discussion in 'MISSOURI RIVERS TALK' started by smpettigrew1, Sep 10, 2016.

  1. smpettigrew1

    smpettigrew1 Member

    Messages:
    69
    State:
    Kidder,Missouri
    Name:
    Shawn
    I used to fish for bass & crappie a lot. I know these species are really affected by barometric pressure and weather patterns. Are river cats just as sensitive? Do they shut down on bluebird days after a front rolls through?
     
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  2. cavillac

    cavillac Active Member

    Messages:
    831
    State:
    Loveland,Iowa
    I don't know if the barometer really has effect on fish as much as people think, the differences in pressure only mean the fish have to adjust slightly to be where they want in the water column. They are under so much pressure from the water already.
     
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  3. south point

    south point Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,536
    State:
    missouri
    I think they move based on weather, especially a cold front. But I don't believe fish ever totally shut down. like I have said before, fishing a few tourneys has taught me that there are always some fish biting somewhere. Even on the worst days when over half the folks get skunked, someone will turn in a respectable limit. It's a humbling thought to know that they were biting but I wasn't smart enough to catch them.
     
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  4. here-kitty-kitty

    here-kitty-kitty Member

    Messages:
    159
    State:
    Kentucky
    For some reason I catch more when the barometric is under 30 and on the down side
     
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  5. tall_jason79

    tall_jason79 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,306
    State:
    Saint Louis, Mo
    Name:
    Jason
    There is a ton of speculation on pressure change and how it affects fish. My experiences , cold fronts are typically high pressure, and the hardest to fish. Big changes also have negative affects , Saturday during the mississippi river monsters tournament they started off hungry but around 9 they seemed to shut down right as the pressure started to dive with the incoming front, we catch a few after but they were all less than 15 lbs. I would imagine the smaller fish with smaller swim platters might be affected less than say a 30 lb plus. They are opportunist feeders but a majority would probably feel a bit full due to the added pressure? Sounds like a possibility but I have yet to figure it out. Most rather fish if it's nice but it would take fishing during those hard times to really figure it all out.
     
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  6. twaskom

    twaskom Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,901
    State:
    Indiana
    Name:
    Tom
    I do think the barometric pressure has an effect on fish. Much more that it does on us because we do not have that air blether that they have. Jason may be right about the pressure change having more of an effort on larger fish because the air bladder is larger. I think the air pressure change may make a difference in where the fish are most comfortable in the water column. I guess something like a guy eating a big thanksgiving dinner, then washing it down with a 6 pak of bud. Next thing you know, he is not comfortable standing up but wants to lay on the couch and watch football (with his eyes closed). Anyway, you get the idea. It seems to me, that when the change itself occurred has more effect than what the pressure is. I think the fish will, after a period of time, adjust his system to the conditions.

    Then, like the guy on the couch, after a while, maybe around 9 that evening he will have his nose stuck in the refrigerator looking for a snack and another bud.
     
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  7. cavillac

    cavillac Active Member

    Messages:
    831
    State:
    Loveland,Iowa
  8. here-kitty-kitty

    here-kitty-kitty Member

    Messages:
    159
    State:
    Kentucky
  9. Mosquito Creek Crawler

    Mosquito Creek Crawler Member

    Messages:
    66
    State:
    Kansas
    Name:
    Larry
    OK. So the article said there is nothing about barometric pressure that "should" really effect fish.
    I just know when a summer storm starts to move in, the fish start hitting. As the article said, it could be a numbers of factors that make fish bite or not.
    Now, when said storm moves in things do change on the surface and well as lighting, wind & waves, possible lightning and vibration. Could this cause a chain reaction? Bugs and flies drop to the surface of the water. Crawfish and small fish move. Bluegills pick up on this movement and feed. Predators move in on gills and other small fish to feed?
    At least I can spend my $ on hooks instead of a barometer!
     
  10. tall_jason79

    tall_jason79 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,306
    State:
    Saint Louis, Mo
    Name:
    Jason
    on more than one occasion i can say with out a doubt the bite seemed to shut down after the barometer changed ( increased). At least for the spot being fished, perhaps they moved and that just happened to occur at the same exact time as pressure changed. I believe in the barometer, and it having some type of effect on fish. I have no science to prove it though just like no one does. but if i am happy relaxing eating then i have some type of gas build up, i will guarantee i'm not going to continue to eat. I will be uncomfortable and i feel that pressure change from low to higher under so many feet of water could be enough to make a fish feel uncomfortable enough not to actively feed. Thats not saying they wont snag a easy meal infront of their face though.
     
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  11. OrdieGunny

    OrdieGunny Member

    Messages:
    58
    State:
    NC
    Name:
    joe
    I am not one to let the weather put a damper on my fishing (ie I will fish through a thunderstorm or blizzard and have done both), but I do know that I prefer fishing when a low pressure front is blowing through and the barometer is falling. the fish turn on and the bite is fantastic. if a high pressure front or rising barometer is happening then they do tend to slow down but you can still catch fish if you know how.
     
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  12. CaptainBrad

    CaptainBrad Active Member

    Messages:
    655
    State:
    North Dakota
    I have spent years studying this and am pretty much to the conclusion that the barometer does not physically affect the fish but they are able to sense it somehow and know that it brings changes. I have kept good catch records for the past decade and have been able to pinpoint that the fish know when the barometer is falling as a big front is pushing. The bite picks up until the front passes and the barometer changes to rising. When you run the charts on barometer as history you can see the exact point the bite shuts off when the front passes. Sometimes the front passes hours before the actual storm. I have also noticed that when the bite shuts off the wind almost always turns from SW to NW indicating a cold front.

    My theory is the fish can sense a negative coming and they prepare by actively feeding in preparation for the negative. Once the negative happens they simply go lay down and wait. Clearly they don't have a weatherman to tell them the severity of a storm so they just instinctively plan for it. I see this with deer also.

    Obviously, there are fronts all the time that make no difference. The best fishing is stable conditions.
     
  13. music4cash

    music4cash Member

    Messages:
    19
    State:
    Virginia
    Name:
    Jeff
    I would guess that the rate of change of pressure might be what's important more than the pressure itself. If a fish were resting I can imagine that a fast drop in pressure might disturb it enough that it decides to take a bait.
     
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  14. IllinoisMatt

    IllinoisMatt Active Member

    Messages:
    401
    State:
    Illinois
    Name:
    Matt
    I also seem to catch more fish with a falling barometer.
     
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  15. Cuda

    Cuda Active Member

    Messages:
    579
    State:
    Iowa
    Name:
    Mike
    I have been out fishing every day for a month during the summer. I caught fish every day too. I was fishing and no real good bites then it started to drizzle and the bite was on. And other days not a nibble till a set time. I took a buddy and I baited the pole up and cast it out. I gave him the pole I grabbed a beer sat back and I told him he was going to get a bite to hang onto the pole he started to laugh. But the bite scared him it was a really good pull. Then we caught a bunch of cats. I could fish day or night and I always caught fish day after day. Rain or shine windy or still cloudy or clear sky so I do not worry about it.
     
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  16. CaptainBrad

    CaptainBrad Active Member

    Messages:
    655
    State:
    North Dakota
    When you do what I do you don't get to stay home until there is lightening or a tornado. We always get our fish too however, when I discuss these conditions it is showing increases and decreases in activity.
     
  17. arky

    arky Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,806
    State:
    kansas
    Wind from the east... fish bite the lest! Here in Kansas the wind can change strength or direction and shut the fish off. But that change is most likely caused by barometer change.
     
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  18. tall_jason79

    tall_jason79 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,306
    State:
    Saint Louis, Mo
    Name:
    Jason
    Brad, could there be a difference in species though. A 50 plus lb blue cat would have a much larger swim bladder, with the added depth between areas you fish compared to the waters i fish could possibly amplify this effect? Its all theory and trying to understand how weather affects fish can only make us better fishermen. I agree with your statement, i am mostly just curious if it could vary depending on geographical location and species. A change in pressure would trigger them to bite, if they had been biting then odds are they are full to a certain degree, i think it could be retaliative. You are certainly far more knowledgeable due to the countless hours you have on the water. The knowledge you share with the catfishing community is a valuable asset, without a doubt.
     
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  19. CaptainBrad

    CaptainBrad Active Member

    Messages:
    655
    State:
    North Dakota
    Back in 2011 I guided a guy who was writing a book. (mac-b was there) He went on to tell me that barometric pressure in fish as explained to us is bunk. I was skeptical but being the catfish nerd that I am I listened. He insisted that mathematically air pressure could not have an effect on water. He insisted that it is light conditions and barometer indicates light conditions. While I don't totally buy into the pressure has no affect part, I did start paying attention to light and through my research came to my conclusions that catfish sense the changes coming and will basically plan ahead. I found that after these fronts when the fish shut down I was finding and catching them away from current and it took a longer sit to get the fish to come out and get the bait.

    Think about it in terms of thanksgiving. After you pig out on thanksgiving dinner you tend to go lay down and not do much. If someone puts a piece of pie in front of you the chances are you will groan and look at it for a while but eventually sit up and eat it. Same theory.

    Now something very exciting, I recently ran into some old video from the early 80s with some of the best teachers in fishing (bass mind you) speaking about fronts and guess what? They talk about light and the fish not actively feeding right after the front moves and how long it takes them to get back to the buffet. It basically proved everything I have been writing about for years. I am kind of shocked this info has basically been swept under the rug for the last 30+ years.
     
  20. arky

    arky Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,806
    State:
    kansas
    Barometric changes are either a result of weather change or the cause of weather change. A low front comes in and it becomes cloudy, wind will change directions and I have noticed in 50 years fish generally will bite well. High front pushes through with blue bird skies and wind change and in 50 years I have noticed fish develop lock jaw. Some seem to indicate it because of amount of light. Well I fish a lot all night and when fronts pass at night they have the same darn effect even on a new moon.????
    Now I can measure surface water temps and often as I move around the lake I might notice a 3 to 6 degree difference say in areas of 12 ft depths. In the early parts of the year the fish are in the warmer areas and by mid summer in the cooler ones. So there are lots of things that we do not know about fish, but when it's cold outside I set where it is warmest in the house, but come August that 65 degree corner of the house is quite comfortable.

    Now some days thermocline kicks my arse!