This is a play on words, Bird Nests, referring to the love hate relationship many anglers have with bed fishing in the promising weeks in the holy grail of bass fishing, the spawn. During the spawn many angler have a feast or famine day on the water.
Typically, anglers love the spawn because they have a passion for site fishing and the challenge of tempting that hefty female into destroying one’s bait in shear anger and frustration. Other anglers hate bed fishing because they have had bad experiences and are not patient enough to see the fish stare at the bait and not touch it, or they just cannot find the vital bed locations. Spring bed fishing also allows for in some geographical locations, an opportunity to get out the heavy rod, braid, and a top water bait to disrupt the bedding process, irritate bass, and hook up with top water baits during the spawn.
For me top water bait fishing for big bass has always been about the frog, but this year, I was able to implement a new weapon into my highly pressured waters, the bird. The bird to me, offers fish on clear shallow beds, a whole new way to literally annoy a big female into striking. We know from experience, studies, feathers in our live wells birds eat bass. During the spawn is typically when I believe many bass become accustomed to seeing bait and diversity can be the key, for some people that upsizing and for others its downsizing. For me it’s throwing a bird.
When you study bass movements on the bed, aggressive fish are either naturally aggressive and bite immediately, others are turned aggressive by repetitive placement of an obstruction near, on, or over their bed. The bird offers a unique profile that bass do not typically see during the spawn as a copious amount of lures are pitched into their faces on a regular basis. The large realistic profile of the wings of the bird in clear water will cause a bass to aggressively when it will not strike other baits. Ish Monroe is known for fishing a frog on beds, and has an article that was in a BASS magazine a while back about frog fishing during the spawn. I have applied similar strategies to the bird and have resulted in large bass when other lures did not produce.
My advice, fire up a fish by pitching lures into the bed until the fish is aggressive, then pitch the bird and do not move it until the fish hits. The strikes for me have come without moving the bait. Give it a try during your spawn, diversity is the spice of life.