Neko Rig Tips for Bass Around Bluegill Beds

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Bluegill beds are a bull’s eye for actively feeding post-spawn bass. Kobie Koenig explores a new lake with the use of mapping and sonar to locate bluegill beds, then puts a weedless Neko rig to work. With water temperatures around 70°F, this video takes you through a day of strategic fishing, starting with post-spawn bass location on clear, natural lakes to how to fish a Neko rig for quality largemouth bass.

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The day begins with Koenig assessing the lake structure using mapping and side imaging. He gravitates towards areas with extensive shoreline flats extending into the lake with a mix of grass and hard bottom–prime bluegill spawning habitat. Side imaging excels in revealing bottom composition such as grass, rocks, and the tell-tale honeycomb trademark of bluegill colonies. Koenig drops waypoints on the numerous bluegill beds then hits the bow, where waypoint share along with MEGA 360 Imaging direct accurate casts to fish.


Koenig’s choice of the Neko rig is not arbitrary. He opts for this finesse-driven rig for its proven effectiveness in attracting both smallmouth and largemouth bass, especially in post-spawn conditions. The Neko rig’s unique bottom-pecking action is an excellent mimic of threatening/feeding forage, which draws the attention of both nest-guarding bluegills and bass. Concerning terminal tackle, a weedless Neko hook fishes clean through mixed cover bottoms. At the same time, an exposed nail weight excels at transmitting bottom hardness versus a nail weight embedded in the plastic.


One of the benefits of the Neko rig is that it doesn’t require a specialized rod setup. That said, Koenig shares his specific setup, including  rod, reel, and line, and the reasoning behind each.

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