Happy fish

Published 12:00 pm Wednesday, February 16, 2022

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Spirit of Moonpie and I spent February the 9th through the 11th on the Blackwater above Joyner’s Bridge. The water was perfect at about 6 feet on the USGS gauge at Burdette, 41 degrees, moving and clear. Air temps ranged from 28 to 65 degrees. The warmer daytime temps were much appreciated to these old bones.

I picked up a lot of trash, especially downriver from the bridge. Most of it was glass, so it’s pretty old stuff. There was a large TV in one logjam that I could not remove as it weighed at least 90 pounds, I would say. Maybe some healthy person will get it out of that logjam for me and the river? It takes an especially sorry human being to dump something like that into the river.

The fishing on this trip was just so-so for me. I was after blackfish but only caught one. I did, however, catch a chain pickerel, a bream, a mudgapper, a speckle, a bass and a racoon perch. All were caught on the blade bait vertically jigging. So that was quite the mixed bag there. I talked to some other better fishermen than I that did pretty good with the racoon perch and speckle. I also talked to a guy in a kayak that had caught five bass, with one going over 5 and one going over 7 pounds. He showed me the pics, so it was for real. He caught all on medium minnows under a bobber. That was pretty darn impressive!

It sure was nice this trip not to have to break ice just to fish like I did on the last trip. With the warming temps the fish are getting happy. I even heard a few shad are starting to get caught. ’Tis that time of year, and I’m hoping I get to catch some of those happy fish soon on the two rivers we call the Blackwater and Nottoway.

Jeff Turner is the Blackwater Nottoway RiverGuard. To contact him about river issues, send him an email at blknotkpr@earthlink.net. He can also be followed on the Blackwater Nottoway RiverGuard Facebook page. Just type in “Blackwater Nottoway RiverGuard” in the search field on Facebook.