Now is the time for all good anglers to winter up
By Tom Wiest | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Winterize your bass boat?
Not the dedicated bass angler.
This is the prime season for smallmouth bass on nearly every lake and river in East Tennessee. Unlike largemouths, smallmouths love water temperatures in the low 40s. They are going for every kind of lure and are found at all depths, depending on water clarity, weather conditions and personal preference.
Hot walleye fishing is about to arrive. February and March are the months that walleye migrate to the headwaters for spawning. Norris Lake is one of the best fisheries for walleye in East Tennessee. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has been monitoring this Norris gamefish with gill net sampling and electro-fishing, and the walleye numbers are good again this year.
Water temperatures in the lower part of Norris are near the high-40 degrees, the threshold that will trigger the spawn. Usually the Powell and Clinch branches of Norris are too cold at this time, but our recent heavy rains may have changed that. Walleye anglers should be ready with their thermometers.
This new book will help the novice walleye angler and expert alike. The title is “Walleye Trolling,” subtitled “Tackle, Techniques and Systems Used by North America’s Best Walleye Tournament Pros and Guides.”
“Walleye Trolling” begins with an introduction to basic trolling equipment and the strategies for precise fishing, transitions to in-depth chapters covering 11 of the most popular trolling systems, and finishes with advanced lessons on trolling in current, boat control and using electronics.
The book is written by two professional anglers, Curtis Niedermier and Capt. Ross Robertson. It has 106 pages and costs $24.95. Order it at http://www.BigWaterFishing.com or get more information by calling Niedermier at 419-618-7909 or Robertson at 419-283-7069.
• Here is an activity that is fun, free and beneficial to wildlife conservation. For those who love wildlife, here is a chance to make a significant contribution to a national census of non-game birds and songbirds. For the past 15 years the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) has enlisted tens of thousands of North American nature lovers to count the birds in backyards, school yards and local parks on a certain date, and report their findings to the GBBC.
The GBBC is a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society. The target dates for 2013 are Feb. 15-18. Participants will simply tally the number and variety of birds in their area and report their sightings online; it doesn’t get any easier than that. Get all the information at the website http://www.birdsource.org .
Participants are asked to count birds for at least 15 minutes on at least one day of the event and report their sightings to the above website. Online resources include tips to help identify birds, a photo gallery, and special materials for educators.
Tom Wiest welcomes news, questions and comments from readers. Contact him at (email@example.com)