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What would you do - Marsh fishing


tbayboy
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Hey everyone. I've got a place where I can walk my kayak down the road and into a marsh. I've been fishing it a couple days now with some success but not loads so I thought I'd see what the experts think. As an aside - anyone know how to post photos from google photos? The preview is fine but when I post it says "You are not allowed to use that image extension on this community". Until I figure that out please refer to this link for photos: https://goo.gl/photos/1ioxAB3xUUBhvfmDA

 

So here's the scoop - its a full out marsh but they county has dug out a small pond and a channel about 1/2 way to the lake proper. The channel is about 15' wide and the sides are standard reeds (5-6' hight) with an undercut, waters about 4-5' deep mid channel:

 

 

That then opens up into a giant marsh of lilly pads, weeds and grass. Its a mile long and a 1/2 mile wide and frank I have no idea where to even begin. I've been tossing frogs all over the place trying to focus where there's open water under the pads and near by but there's really no current to speak of.

 

The nice thing is that I have the place to myself - the boats can't get in here and I know there's fish - got one nice largie and a couple dinks plus a pike but those were all in the deeper water tossing spinner baits (where the dug out pond goes into the channel). So if you were in my boat (or my kayak I suppose) - what would you be trying?

 

 

 

Looking forward to the ideas.

Sean

 

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I think you're on to something that you've caught fish in the deeper water. I can assume in a marsh the water would get really hot and stagnant these mopnths. Stick to the deeper areas and adjacent structure, if any. Wacky rig a senko or maybe try dropshotting (aka a little more finesse presentation). My 2cents

 

Reef

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Thanks guys, I think your onto something with the finesse approaches - I was going to try a senko tomorrow, hadn't thought of the slip bobber but yeah that could be a great idea (with the kayak its hard to do any kind of stationary fishing but the float would fix that).

 

Any other thoughts?

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Im no bassmaster by any stretch but I would probably send a good sized minnow down in the deeper water and see what the big fish look like. Any good size pike would be hunkering down colder water and would likely be hard pressed to resist a free live meal.

Good luck bud!

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Any idea on what the deepest water in that place is? It looks good, but without some deeper water it can be hard to maintain fish populations?

 

It's always fun to catch bass on surface lures, but sometimes it's not the best way, I would probably mix in a texas rigged worm or lizard, in areas with less weeds you can even rig one on a mushroom or bullethead jig and slowly swim it.

 

Spinnerbaits, rattletrap style lures, even shallow to mid running crank baits, search baits, they allow you to cover large areas quickly and locate the fish? LOL maybe?

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Looks very similar to the marsh at Long Point with channels and dug ponds for duck hunting. My favourite was fishing this in summer from canoe with a 8/9 wt 9 1/2 flyrod, bass bug taper and big weedless streamers ( keel hooks) and deer hair poppers , frogs and mice.

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In the channel and pond its about 5' deep and there are some open patches in the real marshy stuff thats about the same depth. The biggest problem is that there really doesn't appear to be any moving water in the marshy bits so I think IronMaker might be right that the stagnant water with the heat this time of year just isn't able to hold fish. The open water takes about 30 minutes to totally cover which I do with a spinner bait (with some success) but other than that I'm kind of guessing. Going to go out this morning with:

 

1) Spinner bait (or maybe chatterbait)

2) Senko

3) Texas rigged lizard with a bullet weight

4) Frog - gotta keep trying, so much fun if there's anything under there.

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Looks very similar to the marsh at Long Point with channels and dug ponds for duck hunting. My favourite was fishing this in summer from canoe with a 8/9 wt 9 1/2 flyrod, bass bug taper and big weedless streamers ( keel hooks) and deer hair poppers , frogs and mice.

 

That sounds like fun - keep meaning to try fly fishing, maybe this is an excuse though I'm not sure a kayak is the best learning platform. And yeah there's duck hunters here every year - they love the marsh, my wife isn't so sure about the gunshots going off :)

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Well got out for a couple hours today between errands (why are "vacations" at the cottage always full of work to do?). Tried focusing on the more open water - the mouth of the channel and down the channel a bit going slow using a senko and a chatter bait. Other than a couple little nibbles on the senko (local bluegills etc I'd assume) it was quiet. Then switched back to a white/chartreuse spinner bait with colorado blades and got 4 pike in about 20 minutes (one 24" the other three were snot rockets). So the spinner bait is staying tied on (its also responsible for all of the bass including one decent one). So after 3 days of a couple hours each day the only sure thing is the one spot I expected: the mouths of the canals as the enter/exit the "pond/lake". Still no idea about the acres of pads but at least there's been no skunks.

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Buzz baits have

 

Well got out for a couple hours today between errands (why are "vacations" at the cottage always full of work to do?). Tried focusing on the more open water - the mouth of the channel and down the channel a bit going slow using a senko and a chatter bait. Other than a couple little nibbles on the senko (local bluegills etc I'd assume) it was quiet. Then switched back to a white/chartreuse spinner bait with colorado blades and got 4 pike in about 20 minutes (one 24" the other three were snot rockets). So the spinner bait is staying tied on (its also responsible for all of the bass including one decent one). So after 3 days of a couple hours each day the only sure thing is the one spot I expected: the mouths of the canals as the enter/exit the "pond/lake". Still no idea about the acres of pads but at least there's been no skunks.

 

 

Try buzzbaits in the pads, open pockets over right over the pads in some cases...Maybe need some noise to get them looking up.

 

Buzzbaits have been rocking for me so far this year,

Edited by Brettiop
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Well got out for a couple hours today between errands (why are "vacations" at the cottage always full of work to do?). Tried focusing on the more open water - the mouth of the channel and down the channel a bit going slow using a senko and a chatter bait. Other than a couple little nibbles on the senko (local bluegills etc I'd assume) it was quiet. Then switched back to a white/chartreuse spinner bait with colorado blades and got 4 pike in about 20 minutes (one 24" the other three were snot rockets). So the spinner bait is staying tied on (its also responsible for all of the bass including one decent one). So after 3 days of a couple hours each day the only sure thing is the one spot I expected: the mouths of the canals as the enter/exit the "pond/lake". Still no idea about the acres of pads but at least there's been no skunks.

 

OK, I have questions...what is the average depth of water and what would you say is considered deep for the marsh? Also, is it a black mud bottom everywhere?

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OK, I have questions...what is the average depth of water and what would you say is considered deep for the marsh? Also, is it a black mud bottom everywhere?

 

Yep - black mud bottom everywhere, deepest is maybe 5' in the middle of the channel leading into the marsh proper but more like 3' in the pads. The back half of the pads is pretty full of grass and other assorted weeds with occasional holes, near the one side there's more open water under the pads and thats where I've been concentrating with frogs.

 

Looks like google maps has upgraded our area - here's a good idea of what I mean:

marsh.jpg

 

So I launch in the "lake/pond" side and go down the channel to the right into the miles of pads. So far all of my fish have been in the channel, mostly where it joins the lake/pond.

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Yep - black mud bottom everywhere, deepest is maybe 5' in the middle of the channel leading into the marsh proper but more like 3' in the pads. The back half of the pads is pretty full of grass and other assorted weeds with occasional holes, near the one side there's more open water under the pads and thats where I've been concentrating with frogs.

 

Looks like google maps has upgraded our area - here's a good idea of what I mean:

attachicon.gifmarsh.jpg

 

So I launch in the "lake/pond" side and go down the channel to the right into the miles of pads. So far all of my fish have been in the channel, mostly where it joins the lake/pond.

 

Well here's my take on it...I used to fish a very similar marsh. It had 5-6 FOW, mud bottom, and lots of great looking cover. The problem was, the combined issues of winter kill, low oxygen levels from decaying mud and weeds, biogas( hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide), too warm and stagnant water and very limited spawning areas, created an situation whereas only a limited number of fish could survive. Since this includes baitfish, that puts yet another limitation on gamefish's survival rates. Small, speedy hammer handles seem to thrive and the small largemouth become targets in place of natural baitfish.

My opinion is, your doing everything right, but the area "looks" better than it is. It's a carbon copy to the marsh I fished years ago. Have fun and hey, you never know?

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Testing out embedding photos. This is the decent fish so far:

 

yU8l8GnEtDPFuC3LVdZhzXCILCG0hiKV-xX2K-BE

 

Aha, it worked! For those of you using google photos this page helped a lot: https://sites.google.com/site/picasaresources/Home/Picasa-FAQ/google-photos-1/how-to/how-to-get-a-direct-link-to-an-image

 

That's not a bad fish! Good job. You just may have to put a lot of time in and figure out a pattern for consistency.

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Well here's my take on it...I used to fish a very similar marsh. It had 5-6 FOW, mud bottom, and lots of great looking cover. The problem was, the combined issues of winter kill, low oxygen levels from decaying mud and weeds, biogas( hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide), too warm and stagnant water and very limited spawning areas, created an situation whereas only a limited number of fish could survive. Since this includes baitfish, that puts yet another limitation on gamefish's survival rates. Small, speedy hammer handles seem to thrive and the small largemouth become targets in place of natural baitfish.

My opinion is, your doing everything right, but the area "looks" better than it is. It's a carbon copy to the marsh I fished years ago. Have fun and hey, you never know?

 

Yeah I think your right - there seems to be a lot of hammer handles (and some a bit bigger - had a couple 24" pike as well so far). Its a convenient spot being across the road more or less and good cover on windy days but I might have to get off my *ss and toss the yak on the rook and drive down to the actual lake.

 

Thanks for all the feedback everyone, I'll update if I find anything else worth posting.

Edited by TbayBoy
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