Working tailing fish... really.

ed from bama

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south Alabama
Good morning to all-

First, let me explain that we've had rain here on the Gulf Coast the past week- probably a foot or more all told. This means that the local ponds and lakes are full, and that situation presents some very interesting fishing potential.

My favorite little bluegill pond is very subject to rain-run off, and with all of the rain lately, it is full- even past full. This floods adjacent pasture and low-lying areas, and the fish- especially the big old humpy headed bluegills will leave the normal confines of the pond and venture into the flooded land. They feed heavily on all manner of bugs, worms, and grubs. But let me assure you, that even though these big old wise 'gills are feeding, they don't turn stupid. They are still very alert and aware of everything going on around them. These are not the usual run of gullible and easy to fool bluegills. These are no-doubt-about-it graduate school bluegills.
So I took myself, three weight rod and box of flies in hand, to the bluegill pond early this morning. As the sun rose and things got light, the big bluegill began to work the shorelines and flooded areas. I caught some good old big ones and big old good ones under their usual holding spots- overhanging trees and such. But on the other side of the pond in a flooded run of pasture, I could see fish moving and making the water move as they chased stuff in the shallows, so I began a very slow and quiet walk around the pond.

When I got within casting distance, and with my skill, that's pretty close, I stopped to see what was going on. And there- if I'm lyin', I'm dyin'- I could see big old dark bluegill tailing. They'd stick their noses in the grass and their tails would pop up out of the water, and they'd grub along. If they were fifteen times bigger and bright silver and had a different shaped tail, you'd swear they were permit. I have never seen bluegill tail before, but they were this morning, and they seemed to know what they were doing.

So I made a cast. I had a small popper on my leader, and when I let the popper sit perfectly still, one of those bluegills would slowly rise up under it, watch it, and if I didn't act stupid and try to move the popper, that big old bluegill would suck the popper down. And when they ran toward deep water, they pulled hard-hard.

If I made a clumsy cast over feeding fish, they'd spook and be gone. As the sun got higher, I switched to an ugly white streamer I tie, and worked very slowly, it tempted a few big ones, too. It was not easy fishing, but it was fun. And as the sun got brighter, the tailing bluegills dropped out into deeper water. But brothers, it was fun while it lasted.

Good P1430061 (2) resize.JPGday to all

I'll try to attach some photos