Bass Fishing: Big Baits For Bedded Bass | Outdoor Life

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Bass Fishing: Big Baits For Bedded Bass

Draw more strikes with oversized lures when fish are nesting

bass on beds

Big lures dropped in front of bedded bass can be highly effective.

Tony Hansen

Protecting the little ones — it’s a universal theme we all understand. Serious stuff, to be sure, but bass anglers can leverage a similar instinct by literally invading beds — or general bedding areas — with a big, imposing figure that presents an immediate threat demanding immediate action.

We’ve all seen bass turn and twist in awkward annoyance over a light worm or creature bait that breaches the maternity ward. Sometimes they’ll ignore it, sometimes, they’ll blow at it; other time, they’ll simply drag it off the bed.

Now, roll out a big, bold bait that mimics a formidable nest-raider like a brazen, egg-chomping bluegill and it’s hammer time.

Alabama bass angler Russ Lane does this with a 5-inch BigBite RealDeal shad with 1/2-ounce Hawgtech tungsten weight.

“I usually start off with a smaller bait, but if that doesn't work the RD Shad almost always changes the fish’s attitude,” he said. “Something about the look and size of that bait that drives a bedding fish crazy.”

Another of Lane’s aggressive bed fishing tactics involves making long pitches to bare spots in vegetation where spawners typically set up shop. Here, he’ll use a 3/4-ounce Hawgtech tungsten weight, a BigBite RealDeal Craw and a punch skirt.

“I feel like this big, bulky bait falling fast into the bed, stirring up the bottom as it hits and the skirt flaring out really gets the bigger females’ attention,” he said. “You can pitch smaller baits to the beds but usually the smaller male will bite first and mess up the scenario.”

California stick Ish Monroe knows that rigging his namesake 7-inch tube on a 12/0 wide gap hook and dropping that massive plastic into a bed will eliminate the small talk and push big mama right over the edge.

Monroe’s explanation pretty well summarizes the logic behind this and any aggressive spawn tactic.

“When you’re watching your kids at a playground, you pay attention to all the other kids around them,” he says. “But if some grown man comes in and plays with the kids, you’re going to go over there and do something about it.

“Those bass are not going to just mess around with a big bait. They do not want it in (or near) the bed from the get-go.”