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Big Mac Alewife Question

  • shluppy
    Participant
    Grand Island
    Posts: 5
    #1226962

    While fishing lake McConaughy last weekend, I noticed lots of ripples and flashes of silver in the water on the shoreline. Water temp was 64. After snagging one of those I noticed it was an alewife. My question is, how does this spawn affect the predator species I fish for? I caught some short walleyes, white bass, smallies and even a bluegill at this spot, but fishing was slow. I was using a nightcrawler on a slow-death hook with a small gold float and bead. Should I have been trying to catch those alewives and use those? It just seemed like I had the perfect opportunity for something big and it never materialized. Although a boat next to me said a guy caught a nine lb. walleye there in the morning.
    Thanks for any replies.

    jiggin-rake
    Participant
    inver grove heights, minnesota
    Posts: 857
    #1177285

    Maybe try some different lures/presentations

    pullinbait
    Participant
    NEBRASKA
    Posts: 22
    #1177290

    I am not sure how you were planning on catching the alewife, but I think the regs say you can’t use a throw net until July at Mac.

    I think that is why trolling with spinner baits with 3-4″ willow leaf blades is so effective there.

    whitetips2
    Participant
    Posts: 100
    #1177337

    Quote:


    While fishing lake McConaughy last weekend, I noticed lots of ripples and flashes of silver in the water on the shoreline. Water temp was 64. After snagging one of those I noticed it was an alewife. My question is, how does this spawn affect the predator species I fish for? I caught some short walleyes, white bass, smallies and even a bluegill at this spot, but fishing was slow. I was using a nightcrawler on a slow-death hook with a small gold float and bead. Should I have been trying to catch those alewives and use those? It just seemed like I had the perfect opportunity for something big and it never materialized. Although a boat next to me said a guy caught a nine lb. walleye there in the morning.
    Thanks for any replies.


    Umm, if you found the alewives, you can bet every species of predator fish in Lake McConaughy knew they were there too. If the predator fish were not there feeding on them at that moment, they would be some time (hint: low light periods are PRIME TIMES).

    You can mess with catching the alewives to use as bait if you want. You can catch some of them on small jigs, a dip-net would be legal right now, but cast-nets cannot be used until July 1.

    However, just because those fish might be feeding on alewives, you do not necessarily HAVE to use the alewives as bait. When those predator fish show up to feed, and they will, they will crush a variety of artificial baits that imitate the alewives. As has been mentioned, spinnerbaits are an effective bait in some situations on Nebraska alewife reservoirs, and yes, that even means spinnerbaits for fish like walleyes and wipers. A variety of crankbaits also work well; jigs and swimbaits can be good alewife imitations too. Match the size, shape and yes, color, of the alewives with an artificial bait, but probably most important is the artificial bait acts like an alewife.

    Hold on to your rod–they CRUSH alewife imitations.

    Daryl Bauer
    Fisheries Outreach Program Manager
    Nebraska Game & Parks Commission
    [email protected]
    Bauer’s Barbs and Backlashes

    shluppy
    Participant
    Grand Island
    Posts: 5
    #1177508

    Thanks for the advice Daryl! I knew I was working that area wrong.

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