One of the things that I really like about fishing is that it is very accessible to everyone. It helps to have nice gear, but you can still catch fish without it. As many captains or crews that I have fished with have said, “The fish don’t know you’re fishing with $1,000 worth of gear.”

The best way to arm yourself for fishing success is with knowledge. If you can think like a fish, you will definitely improve your odds for success.

If you want to understand what a bass is thinking, this article from The Fix does a very good job of breaking bass fishing down, season by season.

bass_springBass are among the most sought-after freshwater game fish. Everyone from professional anglers to weekend fishermen spend countless hours trying to discover the magic lure to catch bass every time they fish. But the truth is, there is no single bait that mimics all the forage opportunities bass have throughout the year. Knowing the primary forage bass eat at any given time improves your chances of catching them.

Specific, reliable forage opportunities for bass come and go with the seasons. In spring, bass have the most complex feeding habits, so let’s start there.

There are three stages to a bass’s life cycle in the spring: pre-spawn, spawning, and post-spawn. Each stage has its own available forage. When the temperatures begin to rise, a bass’s metabolism speeds up and it needs more food to survive. During spring, all species of fish start moving toward shallow bays and north- or west-facing bank lines to capture the sun’s warmth. Larger baitfish that survived the winter limit the available food sources for bass. Shad, minnows, bream/bluegill, and other smaller species are all primary targets for bass. In spring, bass are not picky eaters and devour anything available. Presenting larger baits better mimics the available forage size.

Photos: Florida Heritage (top); The Fix (top)

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Joe is an avid saltwater angler. He grew up in Washington State on the south end of Puget Sound where he first started fishing as a boy catching perch, flounder, rockfish, and occasionally salmon. Today, Joe lives in Southern California where he fishes off beaches and jetties, kayaks, and sportfishing boats. Joe writes about his saltwater adventures in the SoCal Salty blog, and for Western Outdoor News.