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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hung around the dock for a few hours on Sunday. Felt like Spring.

Water temp was only 41 so the air didn't fool the water.

Did the usual, start the motor, run the bilge pump and just make sure everything was OK.

I set two minnow traps near the dock and one drop net to see about catching some new stuff for the aquarium.

I was amazed that every pull had all three loaded. Thousands of minnows some larger than jumbo's. Countless grass shrimp and two other species of minnows we get during winter.

Picked up about twenty, three spined sticklebacks for the tank and a load of shrimp to keep the food chain going.

Our dock is a haven during cold weather. Very little current and good protection from the wind. Many fish use it until the spring thaw.

The minnows are only there in numbers during this time of year. Warm water has them in the tidal creeks where they reproduce.

It's a shame that so many big minnows are there now when the flounder aren't. This year I hope to build a big enough pen to catch a bunch during March and hold them over for the beginning of the season.

All this activity around the dock just indicates that the back bay system is in good shape. All the blocks are in place for 2004 to be a banner year for the back bays.

Only one complaint for the day. One of those swimming lungs called a Cormorant was in the area. Every once in a while I could hear a big swirl in the water. I'd just stare for a minute ready to grab one of my rods when the bird would come to the surface.

Every time it happened in my mind I could see a big striper. I hate that bird.

Can't wait for SPRING. :D :D :D
 

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Chunking, Couldn't agree more... The back is in excelent condition. It has been improving steadily ever since we stopped flushing our toilets directly into it. It's a wonderful place. Can only imagine what it was like before outboard motors. The biggest problem that I can see back there is the rate that the banks are caving in. The place just wasn't built for the trafic that it is getting these days.

Question on the other species of minnows... Was one of them kind of shaped like a miniature bass, with like three black stripes down the sides, one of them being the lateral line, and some kind of verticle line around the base of the tail??? Had what was left of a couple fish like that in a bass the other day. Tails were gone but they looked to have been about 2.5" long and about 3/8" to 5/8" thick. Would have thought it was a baby striper but there were only a couple stripes.

Ever seen one like that?
 

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"This is not, as commonly thought, a baby striper--there is sometimes confusion, the stripe pattern is horizontal. The stripe is wider in proportion to the fishes body, and there are only 2-3 per female striped killi. The males have 10-15, vertical stripes. These are not much use as a bait fish."

I once thought the same thing. Very hearty critters too. And yes they do work for bait. As opposed to what this description suggests. Hope this helps.
 

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fish-on, Thanks for the pic. I think thats it.
Like I said the fins were gone but that's it.

striped killi :cool: Thankyou man.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Not sure until I look them up but the one with stripes is called the Verigated minnow. They travel in schools in the back and are most common during the colder months. They have a more pointed snout than our regular summer minnow.
Have used them for bait but they just don't seem to last very long on the hook.

Boats still in the water but not going to burn gass until I know something has turned on. Even when I'm not using it still feels good to get on it in the water.

Sun stayed up a minute longer today than yeaterday. Before you know it we will be at it again. :D :D
 

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DID YOU EVER GET THE URG ON A WINTER DAY ABOUT 50 LIT WIND TO TAKE ABOUT 30LBF OF BELLIES AND DUMP THEM OFF THE END OF THE DOCK AND SIT AND WAIT???

FRED TELL THE TRUE OR DO YOU GET OTHER URG'S.
 

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Keeper - No problem my friend... it took me a long time (5 years or so) to identify them myself. They are around all year, but in seemingly more accessible numbers in the colder months.

Chunking - I heard the name you use too. They do school up like you say. But as for the length of life on the hook... I havn't seemed to have a problem. Where do you hook 'em up?

BIGGESTJACK- yes I think about that scenerio often. Between the bass and the winter flatties... it surely must bring something in - right? Anyone want to give it a go? I'm in O.C. and 2 minutes from casting at Corson's. Not to mention the hole at the 52nd St tressel (or old one that is.) :D
 

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Chunking, I agree the bay sure looks nice this time of year and it is not easy to sit at the dock and be teased by warm weather, knowing the the cold water has the fish turned off, but we need this time off for the bay to revie itself. It is amazing the backbay handles all the pressure put on it. I do most of my fishing early morning or at night when there is a sense of tranquility to it. During the daylight hours you sometimes feel like you are on a super highway at rush hour. Maybe this winter won't be so hard and our baitfish early season will be better. Nice report from others too with imput on species of minnows.

It is too early for cabin fever, and these nice days don't help at all, hope we all make it till spring.
 

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Nice Post Fred,,

Guess what I am finding in the stomachs of
some of the BackBay Bass Recently ?


Yep, 4-5"'s long and I am throwing a lure
indentical to it and having great success....

Backbays are also loaded with GrassShrimp right now and the sizes of them have also increased lately...
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The one minnow goes by two names. Striped Killifish and Verigated Minnow.
The one we all use for bait is called the Mummichog or Common Killifish.
The other minnow I have been catching is called the Sheepshead Minnow. Short and stout with a lot of color in the males.
A little small for bait but look great in the tank.

When I caught minnows commercially I always tried to release the striped killifish. They just didn't hold up as well as the common.
Even in minnow buckets they were the first to go belly up.

One thing both striped and common have in common is their teeth. Next time any of you have a big minnow take your fingernail and pull down on their lower lip. You will be amazed at the set of teeth they have.

They don't seem to understand fear either. When I put my arm in my tank to move things around they actually swim over and using their teeth pull the hairs right out of my arm. Just imagine if they reached ten or twenty pounds. :cool:
 

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I have also been finding alot of striped killifish in the 4-5"range...some fat ones too!
 

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[ 01-01-2004, 09:43 PM: Message edited by: hipkvw ]
 

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hip ....whered you find that....do they come in suspending version??
 

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Its a bomber. Ill peak around for something that suspends in that color.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Water must be warming up. Yesterday I stopped at the dock to add more to my aquarium.

Every pull of my drop net had shiners in it. Haven't seen them around the dock for a month.
 

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I snagged one of those BabyStriper Bomber Lures
under the RushChattin Br last year.

Here's one of the lures we have been using in
the backbays with alot of success late in the
year..

Bomber 15A SilverFlash/GreenBack/WhiteBelly

 

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BK, You could just buy a suspending rapala or smithwick and add some stripes to it.
 

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Skip,

In my experience, the striped killie is bad for bait. We have used them but they rarely have worked and only use them when nothing else is available.

It's not just me either, the guys I fish with have experienced the same thing and have agreed that it is a bait of last resort. As a matter of fact, we usually throw them back if we catch any in our minnow traps.
 
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