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EBHarvey

Big Bait/Small Bait Cycles and 2009 Predictions

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I've been noticing a clear pattern over the last 5 years or so - we seem to be alternating between small and large bait every other year. In 2004 there were lots of big bunker around. In 2005 I could have walked across the peanut bunker in my part of the sound, but in 2006 they were nowhere to be found and the rivers were packed with adult bunker. Then in 2007 the adult bunker were scarce and spearing dominated the fall scene but in 2008 the big bunker returned and headed up into the rivers as they'd done in 2006. This has just been what I've noticed in the few local places that I visit frequently, so I'm not drawing definite conclusions about the entire Sound, just what I've observed. Based on this trend, I'm thinking this is going to be a peanut/spearing year, so I'm stocking up on small needles, plastics, and metals, and building a few lighter action rods to be able to trow them.

 

Has anyone else seen a similar pattern of alternating years of small and big bunker, what are you predicting for this year, and how are you preparing for it?

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Yep. This was the year of adult bunker. Where I fish (east of Niantic), there was practically ZERO peanuts in places where it was loaded last year. I do remember 2006 being a year of bigger bunker and less peanuts - but not to the degree that we saw this year.

 

I have no idea what to expect this year. I'll stick with my approach of big lures/big baits will score the big fish. wink.gif

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Interesting and you may be right. I'll have to check my logs. Also, it may correlate with how good the fall run was.

 

Isn't this what we're suppose to do with our logs?redface.gif

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View PostInteresting and you may be right. I'll have to check my logs. Also, it may correlate with how good the fall run was.

 

 

Isn't this what we're suppose to do with our logs?redface.gif

 

oh, that's what the black book in my car is for....

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I agree, spearing in 2007 were the largest I've seen. I believe it was a warm summer which lasted into Fall that year. Bunker again this year with sand eels on the eastern side in the spring. No peanuts to be found in RI or CT in 2008. Hope you are right on the pattern, hate to see the bottom fall out.

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I haven't seen consistant bunker since the late 80s.

 

As soon as they started making catfood and a bunch of other crap out of them they started to disapear. I remember as a kid even up in Maine the were letting russian ships net huge amounts.

I don't remember seeing any peanuts till sometime in the mid 90s.

I love when the peanuts are around. Who doesn't?

 

More disturbing to me is the lack of large siversides. Even towards the end of the season last year there were less and much smaller in places I would normally see tons every season.

 

I think JoeV was the one that told me adult bunker spawn off shore and the peanuts pretty much go were the current takes them.

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this discussion is funny because i usually fish rhode island and one day i went to WH sandbar at the very tip and there was a ton of bunkers,so many that they were taking my flies.behavior was fenomenal.feeding or attacking by spawning behavior it was cool. but i didn't see any bunkers in R.I until late october and they were gone fast.

hopefully we'll have a better success this season.

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the big bunker were around pretty much all season last year (at least in my neck of the woods). small bait (of any kind) was ABSENT..... which is likely why the albies/bonito were so few 'n far between. I like having big baits readily available, but there were LOTS of times that nothing was harrassing the bunker, no matter how thick they were...........

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View Postthis discussion is funny because i usually fish rhode island and one day i went to WH sandbar at the very tip and there was a ton of bunkers,so many that they were taking my flies.behavior was fenomenal.feeding or attacking by spawning behavior it was cool. but i didn't see any bunkers in R.I until late october and they were gone fast.

hopefully we'll have a better success this season.

 

 

A few years ago they were thick in RI.

 

I agree with bobber, more bunker than bass.

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Hoping the peanuts return this year heart.gif In 2007 you could walk across the pond nearby on them and when they flushed out into the sound biggrin.gif But last year they were no where to be found...in 2008 the schools of big bunker were around all summer and the bass just sat nearby, but you needed a boat to get to them (except at a couple of UDLs)

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No predictions but I do have my fingers crossed.

I run around the entire Sound all yr. Also many trips well out side our little state waters. I see diff amounts bait and fish (qty, size, and type) each yr in many areas of the Sound.

Peanuts and adult bunker showed up here for the last half dozen yrs. Just not all over and not at the same times. As explained below I think I know why we get the fluctuating amounts of bait but patterns still have me guessing at best. Few yrs ago the housy had so many bunker and Blues in it you couldn't find a spot on the entire river you couldn't hook a fish in right quick. Same pattern of fish and bait on all sides (harbors and mid sound). Last yr on both sides of the Housy (harbors) and out in front of it there were large amounts of adult bunker and some peanuts. NONE came or stayed in the cool waters and higher oxygen water they desire in the Housy. I have no clue why. All the same area.

Stuff coming down the river from one of the many projects???

Anyone have a theory on why bait would not initially head in the river when they first blanked the shorelines coming up the coastline and then stay in the harbors and die off with no oxygen to support them rather then enter the Housy?

 

I'm afraid our so called fish/bait patterns are just what makes it here. How much and what type baits the trollers scoop up effects what we get.

 

With the economy in the crapper I'm hoping there isn't as much demand for the products that use the fish oils and the cost of operating those floating net fish killing factories jumps into the red. This way they won't be headed out in force. If you witness the massive bait fish killing ships with several smaller fishing vessels all working together wrapping up a sq miles of schooled bait you'll know exactly why the entire fishing cycle is being destroyed.

Sickening greed rules our waters to. Would really love to jump on a gun ship in the Chesapeake Bay and blow a half dozen of those monster ships out of the waters. Maybe even down a few spotter planes while I'm at it. They rape the ocean for all its worth and move on.

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