"Sight" Secrets For Catching Pickerel
Pickerel are extremely aggressive and a ton of fun to catch. They're not as easy to find as some species of game fish, but teh rewards are well worth it.
They average around 7 pounds (one of the smalles species in the pike family), but they put up one heck of a fight.
Here are 5 great tips you can use to increase your pickerel catch count. Pay special attention to the tip about using a pickerels good "eyes" to trigger strikes.
1. Go Ice Fishing. They are still active in the winter, under the ice, where most species shut down almost completely. It's challenging, and a heck of a lot of fun if you are prepared and dress properly.
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2. Fish in and around vegetation. Pickerel are "lone wolves" and are harder to find. Howver, they do spend a lot of time in soft cover waiting for easy prey. So don't hesitate to fish weed beds, submerged logs, stumps and other areas. I always start in these spots.
3. Use bait commonly found in the spot you are fishing. Pickerel feed on frogs, crayfish, newts, mice, insects, minnows, and other small bait fish. They have good eye sight, and use that good vision to identify prey. Therefore it's extremely important that you use bait commonly found in the area. This goes for artificial baits as well obviusly. So test spoons, spinners, and others that closely resemble a pickerel's food sources in the area.
4. Stick to the daylight hours. Many species of fish feed more aggressively at night, but not so with the pickerel. Bright sunny days really step up the feeding activity, so for best results stick to these hours.
5. "Quick set" your hook. Pickerel strike fast, on sight of a good source of food. Stay alert and give a quick, short snap of your wrist when you feel a hit. Keep that line tight, and allow it to peel of a little line if needed. Keep your drag setting balanced, and adjust on the fly if needed.
A final word: It's important to use a bait size that fits the size of pickerel in a spot. Too big or too small, and you'll limit your activity.
Also consider using steel line or heavy monofilament line if possible. Pickerel have extremely sharp teeth that can cut right through standard fishing line.
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