Friday, August 5, 2022

Sometimes They Just Won't Hit


Here's a big school of stripers feeding on the
surface on tiny bait. They would not hit a thing

I was out yesterday looking for those peanut bunker and stripers that I found the day before. I didn't find any, but what I did find was a glut of stripers feeding on schools of tiny baby bay anchovies.  This was micro bait no wider than your fingernail.  I knew nothing could "match the hatch", but I figured I would run through my best bets from year's past.  That included small bucktail jigs, Cocahoes, float and fly, and Jumpin Minnows. None of those offerings got a hit although they did get a few follows that I saw in the calm, clear water.  At one point, I threw those offerings into a school of stripers the size of a school gym.  You could see all their heads just moving slowly on the surface slurping up the tiny bait. But, not my offerings.

After a while, the feeding stopped and it seemed to be over.  Nothing showing.  I walked to the edge of a large rock and peered down into the clear water.  Amazingly, I saw thousands of stripers just moving slowly along the edge of the water.  I tossed a few offerings right in front of their noses and didn't even get a sniff. Simply, not interested in what I had to offer.

It's frustrating to find situations like this, but I've seen this phenomenon many times before in the past. The stripers will be especially fussy when the water is warm, clear and calm.  You have a much better chance at catching in rough, white water.  And, when the stripers are feeding on bait that is tiny, especially those bay anchovies, they are nearly impossible to catch.  No artificial is going to match a half inch baitfish!