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slabchaser

what did I miss

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went out the other day for the first time. drilled a few holes with the mora from anywhere from 5 to 20 feet of water. Finally marked them in 20. sat their for 3 hours and could not get them to bite. I tried a bobber and jig with waxie. minnow hooked through the back, through tail, through the lips, just the head. tried a few different color jigs. Tried just a hook. Tried a spoon. I even tried my ratso which has worked very well. What did I miss? They would come two to five feet off the bottom to investigate the bait even swarm around it with several fish and nothing would happen. I never had that happen before. Not for that long.

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There are times when fish are in such a negative mood, that there isn't much you can do.

It's frustrating, but it happens to everyone. I bet if you are able to find those fish consistently, you will get them to bite. Keep trying.

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Dtro said it quite well... Some times you have to play with lure size. There is a lake near me, that for the life of me I cant get the crappie to hit a horizontle lure.. But will crush a verticle presentation. Try different color combinations, and diff sizes..

Remember to always fish above fish. Get them moving towards you.

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I have had the same situation in the past and so far have not struck out when I changed my bait to be tipped with a eurolarvae (red, white, orange, green) or with a little atom wedgie. They tend to wiggle more than other baits and the slabs really seem to like them.

Like Deitz said - be sure to stay above the fish and get them to chase it up. Sometimes you can lietrally get them to chase for 10 feet or more and agressive tactics sometimes are the trick. If they seem interested at all just get more agressive with the bait leaving and they often strike then.

Cruizin

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I always figure that if I can get them to raise up and chase, I can get them to bite. That may take throwing the whole jig box at them, but I'll try it. Size first, then bait offerings, sometimes jigging style.

There are some days where they are just SUPER negative. I gotta think its weather or something that you're doing: missing bites, turning them off, they know something's up, etc.

If you've got clear water its a great chance to use an underwater camera and see what kind of reaction you're getting, moreso than interpreting a flasher.

Good luck and a great question...It happens to everybody!!!

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I usually run around with two different rods to switch fast and I don't often change lures real fast like I maybe should some time.

In that case I would try hole hopping a bunch or move different locations like to the weed edge or up into the weeds, suprising how inactive some fish are sometimes compared to other areas of a lake. But then again like mentioned sometimes the weather just seems to turn them completely off.

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great point fishcast, if you haven't you need to move around. Fish size, fish mood, or the lack of fish period are all good reasons to move to new spots.

I'll only tangle with finnicky fish if I know there is some size or because all the fish are that way.

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Are you sur they were your targeted fish? I remember fishing once with all kinds of action on the flasher coming in and fading out. Couldn't get a bit...until I discovered through catching one that they were rainbow chubs.

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Had same thing happen to me last year on a small lake. I ended up down sizing as much as I could and using 2 lb test, smallest jig I had, spring bobber set up, with a eurolarva. Ended up catching a half dozen 10-12 inch ciscos. Weird... I didn't even know they were in this lake. The lake itself is only abou 85 acres and gets to about 50 feet deep and is quite murky.

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Negative fish for me is a horizontal jig with wiggly euro's. I might even slip on a float to pound the bait in place to tempt them as much as possible. Get the first one to bite, and hold on for some action. I would also question what species was on the locator. I was out on the weekend and had been hitting crappies and sunnies and moved to a hole that only had perch. They did not bite for anything while the other two species were very cooperative. Also, sometimes its just fishing and not catching.

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