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#11610489 - 05/18/16 12:46 PM Fishing after the sun goes down?
Chris Coufal Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/04/09
Posts: 1401
Loc: Austin, Tx
Asking for insight on how you guys attack a lake after the sun goes down when the bite dies. For example if you are fishing from the hours of 5p-10p in the evenings after work.

Typical scenario: Spring-Summer, rocky lake with docks, marinas, flooded brush and varied visibility from 5ft to 25ft depending on where you are.

For a few months I’ve been locating deeper fish out on points, drops and the edges of drains in anywhere from 20-40fow. Sometimes they are suspended and other times they are not. Usually there is bait present and I can find a decent bite from an assortment of techniques including plastics, spoons and trebles. About 8:30 once the sun goes down, the bite shuts off and the fish just go MIA. The graph goes from looking like a light up video game full of bait and arches to just a blank white screen null and void of life. It’s like everything just vanishes. When that happens I’ve moved up shallow, out deeper and over to the adjacent structures like a nearby hump, drain, dock, brush, bluff wall and marina…..and just can’t find them. Where do they go? As an angler, how do you change your approach after the sun goes down to “stay on ‘em”? I’ve been trying to figure out for weeks and the only solution I’ve come up with is to sit in the boat after dark and drink some coldies before admitting defeat and heading in.

How do you guys change after the sun goes away?
Thanks
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#11610521 - 05/18/16 12:59 PM Re: Fishing after the sun goes down? [Re: Chris Coufal]
Im RICK JAMES Online   happy
Pro Angler

Registered: 02/13/09
Posts: 720
Loc: Alvord,tx
In my experience it usually picks back up after 10:30 or so. I love night fishing during summer. If it's a full moon that seems to be better. I fish docks and marinas. Rip rap seems to be good. Basically shallow waters pattern.
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#11610535 - 05/18/16 01:03 PM Re: Fishing after the sun goes down? [Re: Chris Coufal]
bigbass94 Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 05/27/12
Posts: 3163
Loc: San Antonio, Texas
I'm in the exact same situation as you right now, so I'm curious to see some of these answers as well! It's so weird, after about 8:30, the bite and fish are nonexistent. I would guess that the fish group up on the nearest drop or piece of cover, but that's never the case for me. I'm at a loss for getting a bite after dark.
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#11610602 - 05/18/16 01:35 PM Re: Fishing after the sun goes down? [Re: Chris Coufal]
CB327 Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/24/04
Posts: 831
Loc: Seagoville,TX,USA
I think they move to shallow cover where it is difficult to use sonar to find them. Between the weedline and the bank if your lake has vegetation. If the lake has docks that have lights wait a couple of hours after dark and the bugs that drop in the water are productive areas for me. They also move higher in the water column in open water, I have caught a lot of fish on large black Zara spook in areas that I have marked fish earlier but disappeared as you say.
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#11610609 - 05/18/16 01:38 PM Re: Fishing after the sun goes down? [Re: Chris Coufal]
Thad Rains Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 10/09/01
Posts: 2371
Loc: Lubbock, Texas.
I guess we are lucky in west Texas, as the fish do not normally move from their original haunts. There are shallow fish that stay shallow and deep fish that stay deep. One ting that picks up is the topwater bite. It normally turns on just at dark and lasts for quite some time. The fish that are suspended normally come up shallower and can be caught o shallow running CB's, flukes, jerkbais or topwater baits. Our deeper bite seems to turn on after about9:45 or so and you can get some good fish doing that. Our last working man's T was won with 3 fish,2 overs (18") all caught deep, on flutter spoon, deep diving CB and a shaky head. We have clarity like your on Alan Henry and they seem to stay where they are, coming more shallow as the night goes on. Wish I could help more. Tight lies, keep safe and good luck.

Thad Rains
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#11610690 - 05/18/16 02:12 PM Re: Fishing after the sun goes down? [Re: Chris Coufal]
MagFluker Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 07/29/12
Posts: 703
Loc: Austin, TX
Their eyes need to adjust to the dark and there is always a lull from dusk to dark. I think if you stayed out later you'd catch more. 2 of my DD's were after 10 pm coming after a lull in action. I'd say the fish move shallow and begin to chase the bait again when they can see them, specifically when the bait move to the surface.

"Research has also indicated that bass do not have the ability to quickly adjust their pupil to varying levels of light, taking 20 minutes or longer for bass to adjust from changing light conditions at dawn and dusk. However, most of the smaller baitfish species take even longer to adjust to changing light, which may explain why fishing is typically good early and late. Due to the difference in adjustment times, bass would seem to have a sight advantage over their prey at dawn and dusk, increasing their aggressiveness and feeding efficiency. Additional evidence indicates that the eyesight of bass increases with fish size, which could partially explain the increased difficulty of catching trophy bass on artificial baits."
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#11610853 - 05/18/16 03:22 PM Re: Fishing after the sun goes down? [Re: MagFluker]
bigbass94 Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 05/27/12
Posts: 3163
Loc: San Antonio, Texas
Originally Posted By: MagFluker
Their eyes need to adjust to the dark and there is always a lull from dusk to dark. I think if you stayed out later you'd catch more. 2 of my DD's were after 10 pm coming after a lull in action. I'd say the fish move shallow and begin to chase the bait again when they can see them, specifically when the bait move to the surface.

"Research has also indicated that bass do not have the ability to quickly adjust their pupil to varying levels of light, taking 20 minutes or longer for bass to adjust from changing light conditions at dawn and dusk. However, most of the smaller baitfish species take even longer to adjust to changing light, which may explain why fishing is typically good early and late. Due to the difference in adjustment times, bass would seem to have a sight advantage over their prey at dawn and dusk, increasing their aggressiveness and feeding efficiency. Additional evidence indicates that the eyesight of bass increases with fish size, which could partially explain the increased difficulty of catching trophy bass on artificial baits."




That's very interesting. I didn't know that it took bass so long for their eyes to adjust. Thanks for sharing.
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"If people concentrated on the really important things in life, there'd be a shortage of fishing poles." - Doug Larson

"That was like watching the birth of Jesus!"-Urban Fisher

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#11612454 - 05/19/16 11:24 AM Re: Fishing after the sun goes down? [Re: Chris Coufal]
Chris Coufal Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/04/09
Posts: 1401
Loc: Austin, Tx
Thanks
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-Chris-



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#11612800 - 05/19/16 01:54 PM Re: Fishing after the sun goes down? [Re: Chris Coufal]
Donald Harper Online   happy
TFF Guru

Registered: 01/25/08
Posts: 12225
Loc: Justin, TX.
On every lake I fish, I have 3 deep water spots. These are ledges with scattered cover on them. Most are in 20 ft. of water and drop to 40 to 50 ft. These are the spots that my shallow water fish live when they return to their comfort zone to rest. They are always there at night. Many times they are tucked up tight against the ledge just below the lip and cannot be seen very well with the depth finder.

On one lake, I have one spot with LOTS of cover on top sitting in 15 ft. of water. They feel very safe here and will also drop below the lip of the ledge to rest. When they are up there which is only a few feet away, they are usually active and can be caught. My bait of choice is my 1 oz. Deep Ledge Spinner Bait. I fish it parallel with the ledge trying to come in contact with the last bushes next to the drop. Mid-Night on a full moon has been the best time for a DD.


Edited by Donald Harper (05/19/16 02:24 PM)
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