Matteo78

White perch

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Tried some saltwater Creeks for some White perch earlier. Nothing. Are they native to the cape and the estuaries. Was using a 2” grub on a jig head. Have you guys encountered them before in the estuaries?

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They are in the estuaries but hard to come by unless you happen to find a school. Bait is probably the best bet, either grass shrimp or a tiny bit of seaworm. If jigging, smaller is better. Think something the size of an 1/8 oz shad dart or less tipped with a micro grub or bait. Also small flutter (willow leaf) spoons.  Work Low and slow. Moving waters better than slack. 

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As far as I'm concerned, there are no white perch. There  never were any white perch. It was all a rumor, an urban legend, a cruel hoax. :laugh: .   If anyone here is old enough to recall, we used to have a closed freshwater season in Ma.  Fishing would close in February 28, and reopen on the third Saturday in April. So you had approximately 7 weeks with nothing to do.

I must have been climbing the walls as a kid, and my dad asked Paul Kukonen if there was anything to fish for? Paul suggested white perch. Said they're crazy easy to catch, and he knew right where to go.  Sent us to a couple rivers in Wareham.  Long story short, we never caught a thing. Not a single perch. Nor did we even see anyone fishing for them. Never did catch one of these phantom fish.

 

That being said,  Tony Stezcko caught them by the bucket full. He invited me to join him many times. Sadly I never took him up on any of his generous offers.  He told me he frequently swapped white perch for Chinese food from a local restaurant.

Edited by bob_G

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Nantucket has them by the boat load in most brackish creeks an ponds.  I have encountered them in some local waters as well.  I use white wooly buggers, bonefish flies with lots of flash, and small bait patterns.  In places with current just throw a couple of upstream mends to get it down and then use a half assed deaddrift swing so that the fly stays down but has some action.

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A very long time ago,  there were so many in the Segregansett  River, i would catch them while using a throw net for herring, they never worked well for striper bait, even after clipping their fins. 

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6 hours ago, bdowning said:

They are in the estuaries but hard to come by unless you happen to find a school. Bait is probably the best bet, either grass shrimp or a tiny bit of seaworm. If jigging, smaller is better. Think something the size of an 1/8 oz shad dart or less tipped with a micro grub or bait. Also small flutter (willow leaf) spoons.  Work Low and slow. Moving waters better than slack. 

Smaller is definitely better. I was thinking 2" grubs are a bit too big.

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White perch used to be a nuisance in the Bass River when fishing for flounder, early 80's. Later found out it was legal in some towns to pot them, pots were round set in ponds at the head of certain estuaries. They disappeared before the flounder.

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some years we get a bunch some we dont see any taunton river area...some years we get them in apr..some years not till june...when you are lucky enough to find them mepps spinners with little night crawler of 1/4 oz kastmasters with just a dressed tail work well

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Thanks for all the input, I will try again soon. Needed to bend the rod. Found a few pickerel in one of the ponds today. Will find a white perch one of these days

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11 mins ago, bob_G said:

So, are white perch anadromous?

White perch are semi-anadromous, migrating from brackish estuaries to freshwater rivers to spawn during spring

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Just now, FizzyFish said:

White perch are semi-anadromous, migrating from brackish estuaries to freshwater rivers to spawn during spring

Thanks Fizzy. That's kind of what I thought.  How does that explain white perch a hundred miles from the ocean?

I grew up in a small town in central Ma, on a small deep water pond noted for pickerel. I'll bet I fished in a thousand times growing up.  Every once in a while I see a school of unidentified fish, on the surface feeding.   I finally caught one. It was a beautiful white perch.  I always wondered how they got there?

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