Scanning for bream eaters

Lowrance HDS structurescan image of a group of bream beds.

Often overlooked by anglers, deep bream beds are big-bass magnets according to Walmart FLW Tour pros Scott Suggs and Troy Morrow. Bream bedding activity starts in late April across the South and recurs in monthly waves, peaking with the full moon. Tournament and weekend anglers alike can capitalize on this unique monthly opportunity at clear-water impoundments such as Lanier, Murray, Ouachita, Eufaula and Neely Henry. "When bream start bedding, they set up their beds just outside of the weedline," explains Suggs, the Folgers pro. "As summer progresses, the weedlines advance deeper and so does the bedding activity. The very first wave of beds will be in less than 7 feet of water. By mid-August, they can be 26 feet or deeper." "The fishing is all in the timing," adds Morrow. "Bream spawn on the full moon through midsummer, and it often comes into play during the warm-water tournaments." Morrow and Suggs break down their bream-bed strategies to help you capitalize on the bite this season. Bream Beds StructureScan strategy Suggs and Morrow note that when the monthly spawn hits July, fishing is best. Bream beds are indistinguishable from the surface, but can be located with sonar. They utilize Lowrance StructureScan technology to pinpoint beds sandwiched between the outside weedline and the thermocline. Bed clusters appear as dimples, like on a golf ball, when bream construct their beds on sand and gravel substrates. "It's really amazing what you can find with StructureScan," Suggs says. "In the past few years, I have found beds that I would have never located before. I used to focus only on areas surrounding weedline points and irregularities. Now, I scan entire flats for isolated clusters of beds." "I look around both points and within pockets, scanning sandy bottoms for multiple beds," Morrow says. "The number can vary - sometimes there are five or six; other times 30 or 40 - but all of the bedding areas have great potential in attracting large bass." Bream Beds How to fish After locating active areas, Morrow maintains a healthy distance from the bream beds and targets bass cruising the perimeter. "Bass generally hold there, using one edge more than the others," he says. "Once you find a productive edge, try to reproduce that cast." Return casts can also provoke reaction strikes from curious bass that move in to investigate the ensuing chaos. Morrow utilizes two primary lures for triggering bass into striking: a 1/2-ounce jig tipped with a Zoom Super Chunk and a Carolina-rigged Zoom Brush Hog. When presenting both lures, he utilizes a steady retrieve, maintaining contact with the bottom throughout. Suggs mimics erratic movements of bed-protecting bream by dragging and intermittently jerking a heavier 3/4- to 1-ounce football jig, similar to stroking a jig. He tips his jig with either a twin-tail grub or Zoom Super Fluke Jr. He also relies on a Texas-rigged worm to quickly assess bream activity and to pick off aggressive bass. Both anglers rely on a diverse color pallet for their lures, selecting a mix of green pumpkin, purple, red and orange hues. The wide range of colors, they feel, adequately represents spawning bream. Benefits of bream The benefit of exploiting bedding bream is obvious - anglers can expect to tangle with larger-than-average bass and occasional giants. The tradeoff, however, is that a successful pursuit requires patience and persistence. "I'll admit that it gets frustrating fishing several areas in a row without a bite, but once you find the right one, it's amazing how productive it can be," Suggs says. "I've caught fish up to 10 pounds around bream beds." "It is a pattern that definitely produces larger-than-average bass," adds Morrow. "If you're on a lake that normally produces 20-pound winning sacks, you can catch a limit of 5- and 6-pounders if the timing is right."

Tags: article 

/tips/2015-03-21-guntersville-midday-update

Guntersville Midday Update

With numerous local boats on the water, a number of the top 10 pros have been unable to fully capitalize – Cameron Gautley didn’t have a limit at noon and Trevor Fitzgerald, Jay Kendrick and Rob Digh had yet to complete theirs as well. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-21-college-open-day-2-midday-update

College Open Day 2 Midday Update

The sun is shining, the weather is warmer and the bass aren’t biting, at least not for most of the first-round leaders here in the FLW College Fishing Kentucky Lake Open. As the second and final day of competition unfolds, the leaders are struggling to maintain their positions. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-19-day-one-midday-update-from-guntersville

Day One Midday Update From Guntersville

With cooler weather blowing in, patches of mist and rain whisking over the lake, and whitecaps in the main channel, day one of the Rayovac FLW Series presented by Mercury on Lake Guntersville is proving to be a challenge for the field. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-18-murray-state-high-school-fishing-open

Murray State High School Fishing Open

The Bass Federation (TBF) and FLW, the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, will host a Student Angler Federation Murray State High School Fishing Open on Kentucky Lake in Gilbertsville, Kentucky, March 28 with the winning team receiving $4,000 in scholarships to Murray State from Independence Bank and FLW. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-18-walmart-bfl-tournament-preview

Walmart BFL Tournament Preview

The weekend of March 21 will feature four Walmart BFL tournaments. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-17-college-open-heads-to-kentucky-lake

College Open Heads to Kentucky Lake

GILBERTSVILLE, Ky. – FLW College Fishing is headed to Kentucky Lake March 20-21 for the inaugural FLW College Fishing Open tournament. This is the first time FLW has hosted a college tournament that allows open registration from any eligible college teams, regardless of division or location. Anglers who finish within the top 10 automatically qualify for the 2016 FLW College Fishing National Championship while the champions take home a Ranger Z117 with a 90-horsepower Mercury or Evinrude outboard. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-17-weekend-wrap-up

Weekend Wrap-Up

A recent warming trend and resulting rising water temperatures across the country had many anglers targeting fish that were moving back into spawning areas. Both the LBL and Okie division tournaments proved that the big girls are moving shallow. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-16-episode-68

Episode 68

READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-12-10-best-shots-from-toho

10 Best Shots from Toho

Photos, photos and more photos. All totaled, FLW's media crew, which is composed of staff and freelance contributors, snapped more than 16,000 photos at the Lake Toho opener of the 2015 Walmart FLW Tour. FLW Graphic Designer and Photo Editor D.W. Reed II managed the flow of every photo from the camera, through a review and editing process, and eventually uploaded only the best shots to the website - and he did a fine job of it too. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-12-australian-wins-lake-toho-flw-fantasy-fishing

Australian Wins Lake Toho FLW Fantasy Fishing

FLW Fantasy Fishing player Tom Slater of Indooroopilly, Queensland, Australia, correctly picked four of the top 10 anglers the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Toho presented by Mercury. For his picks, Slater won the season’s first FLW Fantasy Fishing event and its $5,000 top prize. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-11-walmart-bfl-tournament-preview

Walmart BFL Tournament Preview

March 14 will host six different Walmart BFL events around the country. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-10-weekend-wrap-up

Weekend Wrap-up

With the Walmart FLW Tour kicking off on Lake Toho over the weekend, all eyes were on central Florida. Toho didn’t disappoint. The system kicked out numbers of giant bass, which led to a final weigh-in that turned out to be a nail-biter. What you might not have realized is that Lake Guntersville also churned out a plethora of giants in a Walmart Bass Fishing League event held there on Saturday. Here’s a recap of last weekend’s tournament action. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-04-episode-67-shane-lehew-and-jt-kenney

Episode 67 - Shane Lehew and JT Kenney

READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-04-boat-bling-renews-with-flw

Boat Bling Renews with FLW

In conjunction with their FLW sponsorship, Boat Bling recently announced the “2015 Boat Bling Challenge – Beat a Pro, Win a Boat” contest. One lucky winner will win a VIP trip to the 2015 Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Airfare, hotel and VIP access will be given to the winner, as well as the opportunity to fish against a Boat Bling pro on Monday, August 24th. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-03-weekend-wrap-up-march-2-2015

Weekend Wrap-up – March 2, 2015

This weekend was all about anticipating the Walmart FLW Tour opener on Lake Toho. Though the pros haven’t started competing yet (competition begins Thursday), we’re beginning to see reports of great catches from practice and photos of some beautiful scenery, which has revved up preseason excitement to an all-time high. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-03-easy2hook-s-new-flipping-hook-

Easy2Hook’s New Flipping Hook

This no-knot technology has already converted many professional anglers from traditional, closed-eye circle hooks that you tie your line to. It eliminates the weakness inherent traditional knots, and gives anglers 100 percent true line strength. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-03-02-pre-tournament-interviews-lake-toho

Pre-Tournament Interviews - Lake Toho

Cody Meyer and David Dudley provide their thoughts on Lake Toho after day two of practice. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-02-27-flw-launches-new-website

FLW Launches New Website

In conjunction with the start of the 20th-anniversary season of the Walmart FLW Tour, FLW is proud to showcase its newly redesigned website. Located at a new URL, FLWFishing.com features a clean, organized look that is responsive on all viewing platforms and devices. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-02-27-flw-fishidy-team-up-again-

FLW, Fishidy Team Up Again

Fishidy allows anglers to explore real-time interactive fishing maps and fishing reports, track catches, and engage with an exclusive community of other anglers, captains, guides and bait shops. READ MORE »

/tips/2015-02-26-kentucky-high-school-athletic-association-regional-registration-now-open-for-fishing

Kentucky High School Athletic Association Regional Registration Now Open for Fishing

READ MORE »