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Spawning Spots

Spawning Spots Spawning Spots
By Bill Vanderford

Spring is here, and spotted bass have already begun their spawning cycle. These feisty members of the black bass family are becoming more aggressive every day. One "sure-fire" method to catch big numbers of these one to four pound bass during this period requires the use of a tiny lure that closely resemble smaller shad, which are still the main source of food for fish at Lake Lanier.

This lure is a small inline spinner that I designed known as the "Swirleybird". The perfect Swirleybird size during the bass spawn is 1/8th ounce.

Though one may catch bass by just casting and reeling with the Swirleybird, learning the proper method will guarantee success throughout the next two months. One must learn to go against conventional bass wisdom, especially in respect to the hook set. In fact, if the reaction to a strike is treated with a hard, upward jerk to set the hook, most spotted bass will be missed.

Success will come when one learns to tease the spotted bass by winding the reel handle one quick revolution, followed by a continued slow retrieve. This action pulls the bait away just enough to incite the fish into taking in more of the tiny lure on its next pass. This sequence could reoccur five or six times before the angry "spot" finally tires of the game and inhales the diminutive lure.

Regardless of someone's age, gender, or experience, these lures make it easy for anyone to catch plenty of spotted bass during the spawn at Lake Lanier. In fact, women and children with little or no fishing background are often far more successful than seasoned bass anglers. These neophytes generally listen to the instructions better, are not set in their ways, and don't react violently to every strike. Also, they often use spincast reels that possess a much slower retrieve, which keeps the lures in the strike zone longer.

Lake Lanier would have to be considered one of the hottest prospects in the South during the spawning period. So, use the Swirleybird and the proper technique for some of the most exciting spring bassin' anywhere!

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