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Okeechobee Bass Fishing

Capt. Michael Shellen
April 13, 2011
Lake Okeechobee - Freshwater Fishing Report

Bass fishing on the North end of the Lake Okeechobee has been as steady and as predictable as we've ever seen. Artificial baits are accounting for large numbers of bass daily. Top water baits, flukes, skinny dippers and senkos, have been working daily. Most days artificial baits will outperform live bait, especially for numbers , shiners however do account for more of the big bass that are caught than artificials. We have fished areas in the past week that we have not fished this year and regardless of where we stop we are catching bass. Catch rates have been nothing short of spectacular with a high of 120 bass and the average around 50 bass per trip. There is not a bass fishery around the US that can match lake Okeechobee at the present time. If you have a favorite bait that you like to catch bass on bring it with you and I bet you will catch fish on it.
The winter tourism season around South Florida and more particularly Lake Okeechobee is winding down, but the terrific fishing on the big lake is showing no signs of letting up. The lake is at a level presently that urges fish to move toward the outside edges of the marsh where they can find deeper water.
During April the local canal banks and the shallow edges of the lake are teeming with several different species of fish that are searching for spawning grounds. While most of the bass have completed spawning and are now feeding heavily, pan fish such as blue gill are just getting started. Shell Cracker made a brief appearance around the full moon in March but another wave will spawn around the full moon in April. There are many different ways to catch these great eating pan fish. A traditional light weight spinning rod and with 4 to 8 lb test works well for casting to spawning beds or fish that are spooky. Another method preferred by many anglers is the use of an old school type cane pole, which allows an angler to get closer to the fish and is more efficient when the fish are biting quickly, simply hoist the fish into the boat, rebait your hook and repeat the process. Other anglers use a long limber rod and cast a tiny jig head, which can be sweetened with any number of live baits. Each of these methods have merit and produce fish. Preferred live baits for pan fish are grass shrimp, crickets and red worms, with grass shrimp being the best .
It's hard to describe to someone that has not seen Okeechobee before how incredibly amazing the health of the lake's environment is at this time. Aside from the terrific fishing the vast amount of birdlife is stunning. We have been watching a huge flock of white pelicans assemble in the marsh this week as they ready for their long journey North, at this time we estimate that there are at least 200 to 300 birds flocked together feeding and storing energy for the long flight. Ducks too are abundant, hundreds of them can be seen feeding and flying about the marsh feeding on the hydrilla. The lake is teeming with life and must be seen in person to begin to understand the gravity of its importance to South Florida's tourism industry.
Cpt Mike Shellen
www.OkeechobeeBassFishing.com, 863-357-0892


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Fish Lake Okeechobee with a credible professional Guide. We have more repeat customers than any other guide on the lake for a reason, we catch Big Bass and lots of them, our customers become like family to us

Contact Info:

Shellen Guide Services
1607 Lake Drive
Okeechobee, FL 34974
Phone: 863-357-0892
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