One of the best hobbies good to take up is sport fishing. Contrary to many misconceptions, catching fish does not necessarily mean having to eat it. Even the best of fishers sometimes throw back the fish in the lake just because you can.
Nothing beats the feeling of going fishing after a long day, week, or month’s work. Fishing provides a criminally underrated peaceful feel to the fisherman, especially if it is a hobby. However, the whole point of fishing is to catch fish. For fishing to be successful, fish must be there and in a mood to eat. Putting all this together makes the situation a little bit trickier due to an increased number of factors to play and succeed.
What is the best time of the day is best for fishing?
Simple biology says that fish are cold-blooded. It means that they cannot stabilize their temperature to a specific temperature and easily change according to the temperatures in the environment.
Too hot or too cold temperatures make fish in shallow water bodies sluggish or less mobile. These extreme temperatures reduce oxygen supply to the waters and effectively to the fish, making them inactive and difficult to feed.
Given the above understanding, we can deduce what time is best for fishing in various Seasons:
During winter, the waters are practically frozen on the surface. The oxygen supply is, in turn, reduced, and the fish are less active. There is also a significant drop in the food supply, which does not help the fishes’ case. This immobility affects freshwater fishes and sometimes saltwater to the point of damaging their metabolism.
All these conditions do not necessarily mean that anglers will catch the fish. You have to get your timing right.
Fishing in the morning is not recommended at all. The water bodies are still icy from the long winter nights. At midday and in the afternoon, the sun will have heated the waters long enough, and the fish begin to move and are ready to bite.
Fish come out of winter eager to eat, just like any other animal from hibernation. At the same time, many are preparing their spawning, so you expect a lot of activity.
Just like in winter, the mornings are still cold. Experts advise waiting until later in the day when temperatures are higher. At dusk or later in the afternoon is considered the best time to fish due to the ideal temperatures and the insects that the fish find very delicious.
Fish are most active in warm conditions; that being said, we expect a lot of fish activity when the general atmosphere is friendly. When temperatures get too warm, the fishes dive deeper into the water to cool off.
During summer, the lakes and rivers heat up early, and by midday, the sun is at its peak, and effectively the waters are too hot. The best time to cast your outing is early in the morning or at dusk.
The dawn and dusk timing’s success is dependent on the species available. Sharks, for example, are more active in the evening hence easier to catch.
Some fishermen and women would argue that fishing in Fall is better than fishing in summer. Fishing when leaves are falling off trees can be a sight to behold.
Fall is not as warm as summer hence fish are still inactive at dawn. The fish, however, have the urge to feed as much as possible in preparation for the upcoming winter season.
Late morning fishing would be ideal because the water would have just warmed enough for the fish to come closer to the surface. It is the chance we all are looking for when fishing.
As the season progresses, the days begin to shorten. In turn, the fish begin to wrap up their day early. Fishing in late Fall is advised in the early afternoon and not too late in the evening.
What are the best days for fishing?
We have learned how hot and cold temperatures affect fish. Why don’t we always have buckets full of fish on that warm summer morning or that late evening fishing in Fall? Something else must be at play here. They include:
Tides are one of the things you should look up when going on a fishing trip. It is mainly because water movement stirs a lot of nutrients which attract a lot of fish. And as they say, the more significant the change in tide, the more active fish are.
Tides seem somewhat unpredictable, so how would one tell when to expect a surge? Tides are caused by the gravitational pull of the sun and the moon. However, the gravitational pull of the moon is thought to do most of the work. It is notable, however, that the biggest tides coincide with a New moon or full moon. Knowing the moon phases would most definitely help in predicting tidal changes.
Weather can affect the temperature of the water body more drastically than the seasonal progressive change in weather.
In small water bodies, the water temperature may drop significantly under a brief period when it rains. Seeing how water temperature affects fish, we can decide whether or not to swim when it rains. Rainfall changes the turbidity and salinity of the water and elevates the number of nutrients in the water, which affects the behavior of fish.
The wind can change water pressure. The significant change in pressure affects most fish. Fish species with large swim bladders like Trout are more sensitive to air pressure than others with smaller swim bladders like Kingfish.
Other species like sharks lack the swim bladder all together.
A sudden change in barometric pressure will send the fish into a feeding frenzy, and this would be the best time to time your outing.
An increased barometric pressure translates to blue skies, while dropping pressure implies an incoming storm or cold weather.
Barometric pressure, which can be referred to as atmospheric pressure, is the external force exerted to a given area by the earth’s atmosphere. The barometric pressure at sea level is considered normal, and anything different is deemed low or high.
So how exactly does barometric pressure affect the fish? Just like any other animal, fish has specific adaptation to help them survive. Two adaptations play a vital role in the transformation of fish to barometric pressure. They include the swim bladder and the lateral line.
The lateral line is an essential organ that the fish has. Its primary purpose is to navigate the fish and act as a GPS to shield them from predators and direct them to the closest source of food.
On the other hand, the Swim’s bladder is an organ that inflates, allowing fish to achieve buoyancy; somehow, the swim bladder resembles the stomach. When the atmospheric pressure rises or decreases, the pressure on the swim bladder follows suit; some would say it is a natural barometer.
It has come to our attention that barometric pressure affects fish, but with this knowledge, what time is best for fishing then? When a storm is approaching, warm low-pressure air mixes with cold high-pressure meet, and condensation begins. Air pressure starts to drop until the storm has passed gradually.
Once the storm has passed, pressure is at a high, and fishing at this time would be ill-advised. Once the pressure stabilizes, it usually takes about 72 hours or so; the fish get back up and start feeding with a rather insatiable appetite. There is a myth among fishers why the fish go on a feeding frenzy like none other after the 72 hours, and it says that it is because of the absence of hooks that makes the fish forget they were being hunted. The more convincing reason is that the fish has not eaten for about 72 hours, and naturally, feeding instincts kick in hard.
With all the factors mentioned to help decide what time to fish, it is essential to note that they are not independent. Each situation must go hand in hand with the rest. For example, Barometric pressure can factor in the year’s seasons to determine when best one can fish.
We can comfortably say that the beat time for fishing is:
- Before and after high tides, fishing one hour before and after a high tide typically yields higher success. One hour after a low tide will also most definitely guarantee success.
- Early in the morning or later in the evening. An hour after sunrise (dawn) and an hour before sunset(dusk).
- Fishing during moonrise and moonset.
- When flies hatch. You may need to catch one of the flies to set as bait. The best ones are Mayflies or Caddisflies.
- When the water is still rather than windy, slightly rippled water may also work but not in violent waters.
With the above tips, I am convinced that you are ready for your first fishing adventure, and if you have done it before, you are now wiser, and chances of success have significantly risen in our favor.