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Onto Something Bigger

About a month ago I noted that I like to transition from my spring turkey hunting addiction back to fishing sometime in late spring (Great Spring).  I often “ease” back into it by watching a bobber.  That never gets old!

However, I have to admit, after drying off some panfish, my thoughts quickly pivot to something bigger, to some larger predators.

I have been on a few different waters around the state in the past few weeks.  Larger predator fish have been my target, mostly hybrid striped bass (i.e. wipers).  In the process, I have dried off a few other predator species, some “bycatch” if you will.  Hate it when that happens!

There has been the odd walleye or two (no photos due to “quick release”), and some post-spawn bass.

LMBJune24

Wipers can be frustrating.  They are open-water predators that thrive in our large Nebraska reservoirs where they have an abundance of open-water prey.  In those habitats they roam constantly.  Find a school and the fishing can be unbelievable.  Unfortunately, in between minutes of adrenaline, there can be hours of trying to make contact again.

Fortunately, predator/prey dynamics are key; find the prey and the predators will follow.  Even on large waterbodies, even without a boat, a person can see all kinds of clues.  In addition, it often pays to play hunches.

I spend a lot of time covering water.  With wipers it is mostly a matter of finding them.  They are usually willing to bite.  Simply, imitate the natural prey, get it in the vicinity and hang on!  Just make sure your gear, especially hooks, can handle them.

Oh yes, eventually I caught up with a few:

WiperJune24

I know this is an understatement, but it is warming up now.  After all, it is almost July.  I try to give the coolwater species like muskies and wipers a break during the hottest water temps. of the year.  Will be thinking of targeting more warmwater fish in the coming weeks.  Will probably pick and choose times to fish; avoiding the hottest parts of the day, fishing during prime times.  However, with the variety of water we have in Nebraska there will be something to be caught somewhere!

All fish caught were released.  HERE is where I caught them.

P6170012

About daryl bauer

Daryl is a lifelong resident of Nebraska (except for a couple of years spent going to graduate school in South Dakota). He has been employed as a fisheries biologist for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission for 25 years, and his current tour of duty is as the fisheries outreach program manager. Daryl loves to share his educational knowledge and is an avid multi-species angler. He holds more than 120 Nebraska Master Angler Awards for 14 different species and holds more than 30 In-Fisherman Master Angler Awards for eight different species. He loves to talk fishing and answer questions about fishing in Nebraska, be sure to check out his blog at outdoornebraska.org.

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