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Old 07-17-2013, 10:59 AM
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Default Dry/Dropper for panfish?

Anyone fish this way for panfish? What is your best combo?
Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
Mike
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Old 07-17-2013, 11:15 AM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

Best combo is a large cork-bodied popper for the dry fly and then a garden worm on a small hook for the dropper.

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Old 07-17-2013, 11:19 AM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

I just started actually fishing for pan fish again. In my youth I was always trying to catch bigger and more sporty fish, but as of the last few weeks I have started targeting them again cause they are fun. I use a 4 wt 8ft bamboo rod. Wt forward floating line with a 7 ft 4x leader. For flies I use mostly size 12 bead head nymphs, and white micro buggers size 10 and 12. And then pretty much any ol large dry fly in box will work. I save all my screw up trout flies. Ones that just didn't turn out right or the wing broke off. And use them for pan fish. Its surprising how many crappie will eat drys off the surface on a nice cool evening. Its a great way to get the kids in to fly fishing as well cause they can work on their casts, and knots, and all the techniques and catch fish without trying to impress some snobby trout. Good luck.
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Old 07-17-2013, 11:33 AM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

I don't really think there is any magic recipe to bluegill. One of the appeals to those fish is they are plentiful and aggressive. I've caught bluegill on everything from clousers to woolly buggers to deer hair popper to tiny little nymphs. I think the only real rule of thumb for any bluegill is to make sure it's size appropriate and that even comes with quite a bit of leeway.

I guess my point in all that is to not over think catching bluegill. Get to the water, throw something on that looks tasty to relatively small fish, and start catching.
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Old 07-17-2013, 11:46 AM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

I prefer basically any soft hackle sized 10-14 for panfish. I don't think I've ever NOT caught at least something on one...and often when other things aren't working (like poppers). If you hit a group of them (which is common) you can literally get 20+ fish on the same fly before the body gets torn up. It's fun.

I fish dropper/dry rigs sometimes, but not too often. If I get hung up once I tend to get angry and just resort to using 1 fly. That happens a lot on the tribs around here -- many, many rocks and debris.

That said, try a popper and a #14 brassie and you can't go wrong .

But yeah, most stuff works.
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:54 PM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

I have fished the hopper/dropper for panfish in the lake it is a blast. I have used a foam hopper and a soft hackle hares ear under and just lit them up,a little twitch really works good .Have used other nymphs to under and they work just like for trout.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:48 PM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

Thanks for the input. The dry/dropper gives me better control of presentation. The few local fly rod fishermen I know fish either/or. Most use poppers.
Mike
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:19 PM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

I think the most important thing for big bluegill (bream) is not to use head cement. Be careful about bug spray and suntan lotion, too. Large bluegill are actually pretty selective and use their noses to inspect potential meals.
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Old 07-17-2013, 11:59 PM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

This is my first post and I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one chasing the feisty little critters on fly tackle. I haven't tried the dry/dropper setup yet as I am totally new to fly fishing and barely have the hang of nymphing right now. That said, I'm always looking to try something new and the bluegill I've been targeting are extremely aggressive right now. It might be a good time to give this a try.

On a related note, I caught the 10-inch measured beast below a week and a half ago in a Utah public lake using a size 6 green wooley bugger on a 5-weight Reddington Classic Trout rigged with Scientific Angler Professional Series full-sinking line. I honestly thought that I had a decent-sized largemouth on the line when he hit. It's easy to forget how feisty these things are. For reference, that's a 3lb. red kayak anchor behind the fish. Hopefully, I can may the dry/dropper thing work on fish like that when the time comes:

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Old 07-18-2013, 12:19 AM
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Default Re: Dry/Dropper for panfish?

When I lived back in PA I used to fish the Lehigh and Delaware Rivers quite a bit. Both rivers (especially the Delaware) had good stonefly populations and my favorite summer combo was a #10 Stimulator (or Madam X) dry with an 18" dropper to a #12 Prince Nymph.

Lots of Redbreast Sunfish, Bluegill, and Rock Bass on this combo... especially early mornings. Once the sun got up the big river chubs (Fallfish) would be all over the dry's. Caught quite a few smallmouth bass as well on the dropper.

I miss those big warmwater rivers back east.
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