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DEADhead

sucker patterns (Pictures added!)

10 posts in this topic

Been kind of jonesing to get some local fly fishing in since everything around here is still locked up in ice. The river in my back yard has a pretty good walleye and sucker run in the spring.

anyone got any good sucker patterns for the spring spawning run? I'm sure plenty of you trout anglers catch suckers on trout flies during the early season.

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Drifting yarn works, or make up some Globugs.....remember, the suckers are in the river right now for 1 thing only. So you more or less are just getting lucky to drift the fly in there mouth.

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I target White Suckers on the flyrod during March and April with good success. The only problem is all those darn trout that keep beating the Suckers to my nymphs! Generally, deeper and slower runs, not still pools, are used by suckers in the colder months. It is not uncommon to find a school of 50 in even small streams. Sometimes these fish are not at all interested in your flies, usually in the mornings, but then suddenly they will become active when the temps rise a degree or two in the afternoon. Try drifting midge larva or very small pheasant tails over these fish. A better option may be to hunt down solitary Suckers hanging in swifter runs. These fish are feeding and more willing to take a drifting nymph. Just recently in Western WI the male Whites I have been catching have developed tubercules, which are small bumps found on their tail, fins and head. This happens just prior to the spawn. Contrary to what many folks think, unless the fish are actually engaged in spawning they will be feeding pretty aggressively. Try fishing deeper water behind spawning shoals with some kind of small nymph. Yarn and egg patterns will also work at times, but I have found nymphs a better overall option.

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Deadhead:

I assume you want to catch suckers, not imitate them to catch something that eats suckers.

My favorite pattern for them is a #10 hares ear nymph or something like it. I make a variation with all brown dubbing and it works well and is easy to tie. Add lots of weight to the hook shank because I've had best results fishing nymphs for suckers in relatively fast water.

It is important to have some Plan B medicine in the form of night crawlers and some split shot with you when fishing suckers because sometimes they aren't interested in the nymphs or they are in areas where the nymphs hang up and get lost. That gets expensive. I also will tip that nymph with a bit of crawler just for scent. It works very well for channel cats in the riffles during summer.

Few things are more fun that catching an 8 pound sucker on a flyrod in April.

If you can find a used copy or a library copy, check out the book Fishing for Buffalo by Buffler and Dickson. Awesome resource for the fishing enthusiast who is open minded enough to fish for rough fish.

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thanks for all the ideas. So far it looks like yarn flies and mayfly nymph patterns are the way to go in spring.

I'll literally be fishing in my backyard, so I think I'll pass on the bait deal; I was just looking for a little entertainment in the evenings. I realize that the suckers are in there for spawning, but I'll be trying to target the active feeders.

I know suckers will take most patterns presented to them when they are actively feeding, especially when water temps are a little warmer. Usually by the time that rolls around up here, the game fish season is open already. To be honest, though, rough fish seem to put up a lot bigger fight. shocked.gifgrin.gif

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hogsucker: I stand Corrected! Thanks for bringing to light the art of catching suckers on the fly.

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Does anyone remember that Seinfeld episode where George Costanza combined s*x and eating??? It's kind of the same deal with suckers during the spring! smile.gif

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I snuck down to the backyard this afternoon for about 15 minutes before my wife left for work and managed to catch a sucker on a size 14 prince nymph. It wasn't a trout, but it was sure fun on the 6 weight.

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Got out for a little bit this afternoon on the Otter Tail R. and caught a few suckers. Fish were caught with a 6 weight on size 12 and 14 prince nymphs. I had a big one on and fought for some where between 5 and 10 minutes, I got impatient and started to horse it and it got off frown.gif. Here's pictures of some suckers that didn't get away.

sucker1sf8.jpg

sucker3zo5.jpg

sucker2rh4.jpg

They were a blast on the fly; I can't wait until the game fish season opens so I can get the big rod out...

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was out on the rush last weekend and got one (are they redhorse in there?) stripping a woolly bugger...... thought i had a beast of a brownie on- it even jumped..... didn't realize it was a sucker til i brought it to net..... never caught one on a bugger, much less stripping a bugger.....

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