The first few hours of the day are the best time to fish right now, according to local tackle shops.
Tony Cooley of Cooley Grocery said fishing has been picking up below Guntersville Dam the last few weeks. It is best early in the morning and when the water is running at 15 to 30 percent, which is about one turbine.
Fishing is best before 8 a.m., but it slows down after then, Cooley said.
He said people are catching bass and stripes early in the morning or later in the afternoon.
Catfish have been slow, but the bite is fair. There are not as many fishermen catching catfish. Bream are slow, but it is not really the right season for them. They can be caught on worms and crickets.
The baitfish such as yellowtail and skipjacks are hit and miss, but overall fair. Cooley said you have to have the right flow for the baitfish and that is typically between 25 and 50 percent.
Bass are being caught early in the morning and late in the afternoon. Cooley said the fishing is picking up, but it has been really slow for a while. He recommends that you not fish during the heat of the day because most are not going to be biting at that time.
Guntersville Tackle’s Chris Cranford said grass is starting to mat up. People are catching fish on frogs and buzzbaits around the grass. He suggested a frog or a punching rig if you plan to fish in the mats.
The smaller fish are starting to school and you can catch them with almost any topwater bait or fluke. White stripes are also schooling.
Crappie should start biting at the end of the month and bream are still doing okay around bridges and boat houses.
Bass are doing well on punch baits. They are starting to school, but the smaller ones are the ones chasing the bait. Cranford said it will get better once it starts to cool and the fish start to fatten up before the weather change.
He said the best time to fish is early in the morning. The first three to four hours of the day are the best, but you can fish in the late afternoons as well.
Unfortunately, it will stay hot through September, but fishing should be good especially using frogs. The fish’s instincts will start kicking in soon and they will start eating more to prepare for the colder season, Cranford said. That will be the best time to fish.
The water temperature is still in the mid-80s and fishing is fair, Casey O’Donnell from Waterfront said. You can catch some fish on frogs and some are being caught on big worms. He recommends 10 inch worms.
There is a lot of bait funneling at the creeks. He said give it a month and bass will be in the backs of the creeks chasing bait.
Crappie are doing well on minnows.
He said things will get better in the during the Fall transition especially with the cooler temperatures. Fishing should start picking up in the next couple of weeks.
He said schooling fish are not as prominent in their part of the river and it is more of a stroke luck if you find schooling fish there.