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Bright Lures Catcher Bigger Bass in Canada Study

Lure color might play a role that most bass anglers hadn't considered, according to researchers at Ontario's Carleton University.

Lure color does not significantly affect the number of fish caught or whether hooking-related injuries are sustained, they revealed. But the right color choice could make the difference in whether you catch a 1-pound bass or a 5-pounder.

In a report entitled "Does Lure Color Influence Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE), Fish Capture Size, and Hooking Injury in Angled Largemouth Bass?", they said, "Bright colors appeared to selectively capture larger fish than either dark or natural lure colors . . .

"Our study reveals that while different lure colors might capture the imagination and wallet of the angler, they do not influence CPUE (catch per unit effort) or hooking injury in bass, but appear to have a small influence on the size of captured fish."

In an experiment on Lake Opinicon, a popular bass fishery, they tested six different colors of worms: leech black and bream blue (dark) , natural cigar red and wasp (natural), and sherbert orange and pearl white (bright). During July and August, the baits "were fished quite passively" by anglers with intermediate skill, who caught a total of 119 bass

Each color was fished for 20-minute intervals, and each angler fished all six before repeating a color. Bass were caught all over the lake, with a special focus on shoreline areas.

Blue caught the most bass, with 25, followed by black 23, white 22, wasp 17, orange 16, and red 16.

"When lure color was grouped into the dark, natural, and bright categories, there was a significant relationship detected between the color categories and the total length in millimeters of captured fish," the scientists said. "The bright lure color category caught fish that were significantly longer (mean total length of 349 mm)  than fish captured on the dark (318 mm) and natural (318 mm) color categories."

Based on those findings, they concluded, "It is unlikely that there is any management value in regulating lure color. Nonetheless, we expect that anglers will continue to experiment with different colors of lures in their quest for the most and biggest fish."



Nesting Sea Turtles, Flashing Cell Phone Photography a Bad Mix

Sea turtles digging their nests to lay eggs on Florida’s beaches face a new 21st century hazard: someone snapping a flash photo with a cell phone.

March 1 is the official start of the sea turtle nesting season. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) reminds people not to take cell phone flash photos of sea turtles on the beach at night, because that can interfere with nesting.

“It’s great that people are enjoying Florida’s beaches and are enthusiastic about our sea turtles,” said Dr. Robbin Trindell, who leads the FWC’s sea turtle management program. “However, most visitors to the beach don’t realize that any light on the beach at night poses a threat to these threatened and endangered animals. A nesting female may become frightened or disoriented by lights or a flash photo and return to the ocean without laying eggs. Lights on the beach at night also could interfere with adult or hatchling sea turtles trying to find the ocean after nesting or hatching.”

Sea turtles have been on Earth for about 110 million years, and eager photographers are hardly a new phenomenon. However, today’s widespread use of cell phones and flash photos on the beach creates a risk for Florida’s nesting and hatchling sea turtles.

From now through the end of October, three different species of sea turtle will land on Florida’s Atlantic and Gulf coast beaches to lay their eggs. In 2015, a record number of green turtle nests were documented in Florida: 27,975 on the 26 beaches that the FWC has monitored since 1989.

How can people help conserve Florida’s sea turtles? Just remember these turtle-friendly practices:

  • Remain at a distance from nesting sea turtles and hatchlings.
  • Remove chairs, canopies, boats and other items from the beach at night, because they block the movement of turtles and hatchlings.
  • Turn off or shield lights along the beach, in order to prevent nesting females or hatchlings from getting confused and going toward lights on land instead of the salt water, where they belong.
  • Avoid using lights on the beach at night. If you must have light, use a red LED flashlight, adjust cell phone screens to dark mode and don’t take flash photos.
  • Fill in holes in the sand at the end of the day, so nesting sea turtles and hatchlings don’t fall in and get stuck there at night.
  • Correctly dispose of fishing line, so it won’t entangle sea turtles and other animals.
  • Remember it is illegal to harm, harass or take sea turtles, their eggs and hatchlings, including getting too close to a nesting female.
  • Report sick, injured, entangled or dead sea turtles to the FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline, 1-888-404-3922 (FWCC).

Support Florida’s sea turtles by purchasing the “Helping Sea Turtles Survive” license tag at Tag funds go toward sea turtle research, rescue and conservation efforts. People also can donate $5 and receive an FWC sea turtle decal. For decals or to learn more about sea turtles, go to

To see 2015 state sea turtle nesting totals, go to, then click on “Wildlife” and “Sea Turtles” and “Nesting.”


Republicans Support and Democrats Oppose Sportmen's Act

The House of Representatives passed the Sportmen's Act yesterday, legislation that recognizes the importance of fishing and hunting to our nation. It passed 242-161. Curious as to who voted against it, and with no idea of what I would find, I went here.

This is what I discovered:

230 Republicans voted for it, and just 4 against it. On the other hand, just 12 Democrats supported it and 157 voted against.

If you hunt and fish, you be the judge as to who you should vote for in November.

Here's a summary of the bill.
Also, if you fish and hunt, encourage your Senators to support the legislation.

Here's what Keep America Fishing says:

“Given all that is going on in the world of politics, for our nation’s sporting traditions to receive full consideration by the House of Representatives demonstrates that our Congressional leaders recognize the importance of recreational fishing and hunting to the nation.”


What You Should Know About Barometric Pressure to Help You Catch Fish

Spring is here --- or rapidly approaching --- in many areas of the country, and anglers are ready to hit the water.

With that in mind, I’m sharing below an excerpt from my book Better Bass Fishing on how weather influences fish behavior. This explains the effects of barometric pressure.

Barometric Pressure

Generally moving from west to east, areas of high and low pressure determine our weather.

As high pressure moves in, winds tend to blow clockwise and away from the center. Weather within the center of a high-pressure area features clear sky, dry air, little or no wind, and cooler temperatures. Especially during fall and winter, high pressure brings sunny, blue-bird skies, cold winds, and poor fishing.

With the approach of a low-pressure area, the wind blows counter clockwise and toward the center. Weather within the center of a low-pressure area features cloudy sky, high humidity, light winds, steadier temperatures, and possibly precipitation. Fishing almost always is better under these conditions.

Changes occur as one type of pressure is pushed out by another. A low pressure area moving in typically brings unstable weather and falling barometric pressure. Falling pressure, anglers know, typically coincides with better fishing.

But maybe not for the reason that many believe. Some think that high pressure makes fish uncomfortable, which is why they don’t bite well upon the arrival of fair weather and a rising barometer. They also believe that falling pressure prompts fish to become more active.

Actually, what probably happens is that falling pressure allows plankton and tiny invertebrates to become more buoyant and float upward. This makes them easier prey for shad and minnows. The increased activity of these forage species, in turn, triggers bass and other game fish to feed.

Or, falling pressure simply might be an indicator of more favorable conditions overall, according to Bob Ponds, a former professional angler who worked as a radar specialist and supervisor for the U.S. Air Force and the National Weather Service.

“If you have falling pressure, you’re going to have high humidity and clouds. It will be darker and the fish will stray out farther from where they have been hiding and they will bite better,” he says. “Barometric pressure doesn’t affect how fish bite so much as it indicates conditions that affect how they will bite.”

And what happens when the barometer rises? Why do the fish stop biting? Here’s one theory:

“When you’ve got a rising barometer, fish are going to seek eddies and structure to take the pressure off them,” says Sam Griffin, a lure maker and guide on Florida’s Lake Okeechobee. “We can feel a temperature change. They can feel a pressure change. We think that fish hide in cover and behind structure to feed. They also do it to rest.”