Best Baits for the Florida Bass Spawn

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As early February ushers in the spawning season in the heart of South Florida, seasoned pro Jesse Mizell starts hunting bass on famed Lake Okeechobee. Mizell shares a wealth of knowledge on finding productive bass fishing areas and how to catch them using a handful of standard baits. Without further ado, here are Mizell’s top spawning season tactics for Florida bass.

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IDENTIFY PRIME SPOTS

Mizell stresses the importance of finding bass spawning flats. A combination of good bottom, cover, and water clarity is key. He demonstrates how to use shallow water anchors to detect hard bottom areas and the naked eye to identify prime isolated clumps of vegetation. As the video attests, there’s a lot of subtlety to locating the best spots, and Mizell teaches us exactly what to look for.

HOW TO CHOOSE LURES FOR THE CONDITIONS

Transitioning through various lures, Mizell showcases the versatility required in Florida bass fishing. From hollow body frogs to ChatterBaits and Texas Rigs, he demonstrates how to use these different presentations to find and trigger bass into biting. Mizell uses the hollow body frog and ChatterBait as search lures for covering vast swaths of flats that appear seemingly the same. Once he identifies what the bass are relating to, a Texas-rigged stick worm becomes the cleanup tool of choice, as it’s ideal for poking around specific spots, such as isolated grass clumps, while keeping the bait in the strike zone longer. 

KEY ROD SETUPS

Mizell is quick to discuss his gear choices in detail. From heavy action rods for frogging to medium-heavy setups for ChatterBait and Texas rigs, each rod setup is tailored to maximize efficiency and effectiveness based on the fishing technique and target depth. He also details his preferred reel gear ratio and go-to line for each application.

Mizell’s expedition through Lake Okeechobee during the spawning season is a comprehensive guide to mastering Florida bass fishing. From locating bass to selecting the right gear and techniques, use these insights to be successful during one of the most exciting times of the year for bass fishing.

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