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Pond Fishing Tips and Tricks

May 3, 2019

BY Chris Erwin

This is the perfect time to talk about pond fishing. Why I say this, is because this is just before the spawning period for farm ponds and lakes smaller than Greenbo Lake. To explain this, we need to look at how most farm ponds are built and how they can be a bonanza during this period.

JD Rose holding one of the big fish he caught this year topping 7lbs taken from a farm pond in Harrison County Kentucky, JD is formerly from Greenup KY (Photo submitted)

Most farm ponds are build to have a shallow part; this is where cattle and other farm aminals can stand and drink. The other end is usually made to be the deep end often with a spillway or a drain to regulate water depth. As the water warms in the spring, the fish will begin to migrate from deep water to the water that is warmer (the shallows). This instinctive migration creates some great fishing opportunities.

The water temperature in ponds warms much faster than lakes due to the sheer volume of water. Most ponds also have little or no current. This triggers the spring and warmer water much quicker than our lakes.

Before we go any further, I would like to bring up something that’s is essential if you want to utilize this resource. While some of these small bodies of water are on public lands most of the ponds that may be near you are on private farms. If you want to fish them, you need to develop a friendship with the owners. They are a few rules of polite etiquette that you should think about.

To begin with, ask permission, ask if they are any rules or things the landowner doesn’t want you to do. Like where you park your truck, where to cross any fences. Develop a few different ponds and don’t overfish one. Don’t take any fish without asking first if it’s ok to do so. Don’t leave any litter; plan to take out what you brought in. Don’t build a fire without asking and never leave one burning.

If you become someone that the landowner likes it can also open up hunting locations during the hunting season if you are someone they can trust.
There is a reason why now is the right time. I am getting reports that these farm ponds are in the pre-spawn period. This is when male bass begins to build a nest for the upcoming nesting period. The fish known as buck bass will cruse the shallow water areas. They become aggressive and territorial. Once a location is staked out, they don’t want anything in the nesting area making it easy to find a lure they won’t tolerate in their space.

This is a fish that JD caught last year from a different farm pond using the same 7inch worn, fishing the deep areas as the buck bass work the shallows. (Photo submitted)

You can have a ball catching these buck bass, or you can go after the real prize. I’m talking about the big girls still staging in deeper water.
JD Rose from Harrison County Kentucky has established a string of pond fishing locations where he catches some huge lunkers every spring. He doesn’t take the fish, he performs “CPR” and lets them go… CPR is; “Catch, Photographs, and Releases” them back to their watery home.

While on a tough day he may catch a few buck bass his goal is to hook one of the big girls still waiting to move up to spawn. JD says. “Once they go on the nest I quit fishing for them. I don’t like taking them off the nest.”

Rose uses a seven inch-worm to fish for the deeper fish. He loves the color that Power Bait makes called tequila sunrise. It’s a deep purple back with a light purple belly. His advice is to explore any bull rushes or cattails that may skirt the deep water. Don’t overlook logs humps or any other structure that can hold fish.
I might add this is a great time to take a kid fishing, the memories you make while fish around one of these ponds will last the rest of their life. If you catch a big one or even a little one, send me your pictures.

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