I was at a cottage on Big Clear Lake near Kaladar, Ontario recently. I caught several largemouth bass from a dock with a simple worm/hook/bobber setup (the hook and bobber were very large):
As a novice fisherman, it seems to me that largemouth bass have two distinct modes:
- Extremely hungry. Will bite anything that moves.
- It doesn't seem to take much skill to catch the bass, other than using a big enough hook and not letting them jump out of the water/spit out the hook.
- Or, the bass aren't hungry at all. In fact, I observed the fish being afraid of my worm/hook.
- The water was clear enough that I could see it happening: I'd cast near the bass and they'd immediately swim away.
- It seemed like it would take some skill and a very specific setup to entice the bass to attack. Even then, the bass might not be interested.
It certainly appeared that there was no middle ground. Either the bass were at "hunger level 10" or they were at "hunger level 0". No in between.
Are there known reasons why largemouth bass collectively go into non-feeding mode?
It might just be that they're full of food/not hungry. But if that were the case, I wouldn't think the behavior would be so consistent; I would think some bass would be full, while others not full. Instead, it seemed like the behavior applied to ALL bass in the area. Either ALL were biting, or NONE were biting.