10-15-2001, 07:23 AM
I typically do not use live bait (it bores me to death) and would prefer to not catch anything casting artificials than to be bored and boat a fish on a sucker. I typically try to invest my time on the water in November on cisco-based lakes... and have not had any luck on suckers in that type of water. Have others experienced this too? Any thoughts as to why suckers may not be as productive on cisco based lakes? Is there ever a NEED to use live-bait for muskies on any type of water?
I recognize that true sucker fishing (not just floating a cork behind you) is an artform mastered by only a few patient anglers... but curious to see if the reason I'm NOT catching fish on suckers is my inexperience (and lack of interest) or some other factor.
I have noticed that suckers don't work so well either. I think the fish are just tuned into ciscoes and just don't seem to be very interested in a funny looking sucker, however I have noticed that if instead of a sucker you have a very large shiner or something that is light in color they tend to pick them up quite readily. This is just what I have noticed, not enough experience to say for sure but it has happened a couple of times.
10-15-2001, 10:24 AM
I was on Presque Isle Oct. 7th dragging a sucker under the boat while casting. Before anyone says I was trolling I didn't move more than 50ft. in a few hours of fishing a spot. Anyway, I had one fish hit a sucker in 40ft. of water on a circle hook. I felt the weight of the fish, but didn't "stick" her. It felt heavy so I don't think it was a northern, but who knows. I don't know how many northerns are in that lake. The spot I was fishing probably isn't a spot where you would normally find ciscos and there weren't any nearby when I was there. The sucker theory might have something to do with the areas you fish. If you are using ciscos as structure and are keying mainly on cisco fed fish then they may not be as apt to hit a sucker. Not all of the fish in cisco based waters hang out deep so I'm sure that suckers are forage for some of the fish, some of the time. When the cisco begin to stage for the spawn more fish may key on them at that time. This time of year also coincides with the time most people use suckers. That could taint your results. I'll be using suckers there in Nov. and I'll be fishing in and around the ciscos at that time. I'll let you know how I do.