Massive 'skie caught twice? – Musky jumps in boat – Fascinating Science
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Finding "Eater" Spots
What does musky fishing and real-estate have in common?
It's all about location, location, location!
Well, that's mostly true anyway.
This week, we're getting a crash course from MN guide John Holmgren (Tooth Seeker Guide Service) on locating muskies, and how to get 'em in the net.
"There are certain spots on a lake that hold more muskies than others. There are certain locations on these spots where you will catch more fish.
"Muskies are apex predators that rely heavily on being precise and efficient...This gives you 'the angler' the advantage."
John's primarily lookin' at two factors when locating muskies: Food & Cover
"First things first, you need to understand the main sources of food and structure in the lake you're fishing. I spend hours driving around the lake and marking out structure, bait and now thanks to Mega Side Imaging even muskies themselves."
Exhibit A: "Wolf Pack"
One thing you'll notice as you fish spots over and over again is 'skies tend to set up in very specific locations when they're ready to chow.
"There are locations that hold more muskies than others, but there are certain spots on these locations that fish set themselves up to eat on. I call these eater spots, the X or the spot on the spot.
"I put a waypoint on every fish I catch and I can’t tell you how many of my spots have multiple waypoints stacked on top of each other. These locations are usually the tip or edge of a weed bed, a point of an island, a fallen tree, or any type of structure that provides cover to ambush prey.
"Over time you will even see a pattern of big fish eater spots! I have caught three of my biggest muskies within a cast of each other on the same spot."
Now that's a valuable waypoint.....
Time for the toughest part: Having patience
"Now that you have located areas with multiple muskies and determined the eating spots, leave those fish alone until the window opens.
"There are numerous eater spots on a lake. Make yourself a list of these spots to fish during peak times such as moon rise, moon set, majors or weather changes. This gives you an opportunity at catching multiple fish during a feeding window."
That's a really solid blueprint for catching muskies on almost any fishery.
We had to shorten John's writeup for the newsletter, but you can read the long-form version on the website.
Twice is Nice
Remember the plus-sized West Virginia musky Jason Jackson cracked a couple months back?? (pic)
Well.... look who's back for round two:
Yes, Jason. But ALSO the fish....
Yup – that's the same trophy 'skie from way back in January.
Tough to tell, but the scar on the left cheek is lookin' pretty dang similar 🤷♂️
You be the judge – amazing fish regardless!
Science on Recapture
We probably don't need scientists to tell us that catch-and-release works when we see examples like this over and over again, BUT.... why not see what the literature has to say on the topic?
Here's a cool study published in 2018 talkin' recapture rates on a couple rivers and lakes in Minnesota.
This is data from the rivers:
"Across all three years of the study, participating anglers caught a total of 86 unique fish, of which 23 (27%) were caught by anglers more than once. Three of the 23 fish were caught by anglers three times, while one was caught four times.
"Participating anglers recaptured 5–14% of the fish previously caught by angling during the same season."
Just goes to show you how important proper handling can be. Imagine what the recapture rate would be over the lifetime of a fish with 100% of the angling data available.
Now here's the numbers from the lakes:
"Of the 42 individual fish caught by anglers in 2012, 14% were captured twice and 2% were captured three times (i.e., 16% more catch opportunities in total). Of the seven fish caught multiple times, 43% were caught twice by the same angler"
Turns out river 'skies aren't the ONLY ones dumb enough to bite twice....or thrice!
You know it's a good day....
....when muskies are literally jumping into the boat.
Check out this clip we found scrollin' the interwebz:
No net man required for this frisky high-flyer.
Almost reminds me of the boatside action you get from these Florida behemoths....almost. This action shot from tarpon guide Capt. Dave Nelson is straight-up RIDONKULOUS!
Gotta think this would be like hookin' up to a 125lb musky with an extra, extra spicy attitude. #tarponinsider
– Saric adds 2020 Musky Hunter TV season to YouTube (link)
– "Virtual" MN Muskie Expo next weekend, Mar 27-29 (link)
– Talkin’ Fly Muskies in Outdoor Life (link)
– Pyzer and J. Anderson’s top 5 musky baits (link)
– Study on mercury levels in muskies (link)
– Nighttime Green Bay muskies w/ Keyes (video)
– Low Light/Hot Bite w/ Bucher (video)
THIS WEEK'S LUNAR TIMES:
(Times based on Minneapolis)
THIS WEEK'S MONSTER MUSKIES:
Congrats to Mike Breznicky on popping his first 50+ incher with this 51-5/8" shore fishin' musky from out east! #50club
Diggin' this shot from Matt Strykul (sbfishingtv) from Southwest Virginia. You can watch him catch this beauty up on YouTube.
Love seein' the kiddos catching 'skies. The smile says it all, man!
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