Saturday, November 20, 2010

Small Jigs Rule the Day

I went down to the ocean today and found some very decent fishing in the white water. Once again,, it was a day in which small jigs were by far the most effective lures to use.

First stop was along one of my favorite south shore beaches. The white water was moving, driven by the wind, but it was clean . I snapped on a 3-inch Cocahoe mounted on quarter ounce jighead (see photo) and almost immediately started taking fish. It was not a hot and heavy affair but I was catching a fish every 20 minutes or so. These were decent fish today with most of them schoolies averaging about 24 inches. In the mix, I also had one small keeper of the seven fish I landed here.

My catching seemed to attract a crowd. Most were using big stuff....large poppers, big metal lipped swimmers, large Storm shads, etc., and of course, they were catching nothing. What's with these guys using such big lures? Am I missing something here? The prevalent bait (and it is sparse these days) are small silversides. My small jig with a Cocahoe was a very good imitator of that bait. The big plugs would probably have worked if you had big bait like menhaden, blueback herring or mullet. Mullet are gone, herring have not been around in years and menhaden are scarce so forget the big bait idea. I'm guessing that many fishermen think that a small jig will simply lure small fish. Nothing could be further from the truth since I catch many decent fish every year on small artificials, especially late in the season.

Later on in the evening, I hit one of my quiet backwater spots after dark. Once again, small jigs ruled as I landed three more schoolies on my 1/8 oz. bucktail jig, the killer lure in this spot (see pic). Snap on something big and you won't get a look here.

My advice in late fall.....start off with small jigs (bucktails or Cocahoes on jigheads) at this time of year. Unless you have proof that big bait is around, stick with the small stuff if you want to catch any fish!