June 29, 2016
The smallmouth patterns of summer are the craziest quilt ever. Reservoirs, Great Lakes, tiny streams, big rivers, ponds, inland lakes, and Canadian Shield waters—all have inherent patterns. Each one describes a unique mix of forage populations and movements. Each waterway contains different mixes of sand, rock, silt, and vegetation. Each has its own depth range, water tint, and clarity.
Moreover, most waters offer multiple summer patterns. The list is ever-changing. Among the factors that affect fish behavior are fishing pressure—and not just from humans. Biologists that work around Lake Ontario have told me the increasing flocks of cormorants can drive smallmouths...