New Chinese bass virus, Hottest plastic shape, Brent Ehrler’s bass hate bluegills

Heard from bass-heads in states with fishing-related closures, including ones I missed like MD and TX. Few of ’em felt based on what they personally saw the bans were needed because peeps (not only fishermen) weren’t distant enough.

Good info and much appreciated, but I can’t tell much from it cuz everyone’s reading of the needed distance is different, and maybe some folks were families or whatever. Either way, still feel social distancing at ramps shouldn’t be hard, and closing fishing or just motorized boat fishing not only is unwise and unhealthy, it can put law enforcement in a tough spot.

On that note: Got reports here in NJ of people calling the 5-0 for things folks are doing at no risk to anyone. It’s like communist Russia or Nazi Germany or whatever — call the authorities to get someone in trouble. Scary deal man.

Anyhow, hope you and families are well, and still praying we all get through okay…soon. Heard from a couple guys who are worn out from the worrying and the media. Made me think of this verse:

Matthew 11:28
Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.”

As a guy who didn’t know Jesus was/is actually real til like 15 years ago, I can tell you that’s 100% true in my experience. Now back to bassin’!

>> If you’re getting the BassBlaster for the first time it’s cuz a bud signed you up!

Today’s Top 5

Are we missing out on the hottest soft-plastic shape in Japan?

Check it — pic from @naoyuki_miyake:

Don’t know for sure if that “fat grub” thing really is the hottest deal in Japan — some variations right there ^ — but by the sheer volume of Insta posts sure seems to be. Why? What does it fish like? I don’t know but dang man we NEED to know!

A little surprised no one in the US has come out with it yet….

Tidbit: Here’s another cool shape, from @jackall_jp — believe it’s called the Shirauo Sensation? Looks kinda newt/salamander-ish to me:

WTHeck — a new Largemouth Bass Virus…in China????

Check me on this — am I readin’ this science-type study right:

> An ulcerative disease of largemouth bass has severely damaged Chinese largemouth bass industry for years. [They raise ’em to eat.]

> All diseased fish behaved lethargic and inappetent [no appetite]; skin and muscles were severe hemorrhage, ulceration and inflammation; liver, spleen and kidney were necrosis [dead/dying]. All cases were proved to relate to the ranavirus infection….

> Experimental trials convinced that LMBV [largemouth bass virus]-like was the causative agent. Phylogenetic analysis bases on major capsid gene exhibited the distinction between Asian and Euramerica isolates.

I think that last sentence means it’s not the same LMBV we have here? If so, WTHeck is up with China and viruses?????? And carp. Seems like it’s a bunch of plague-type stuff man. I blame this dude and his shiny cat:

But China does manufacture some sweet feeshn stuff for us peeps so that’s good….

What Brent Ehrler is fishing now.

Brent said, “Bass hate bluegills like chocolate hates peanut butter.” I was like, “Man I don’t think that analogy works.” So he was like, “How ’bout like Captain American hates Red Skull?” I was like, “Now we’re gettin’ somewhere.”

Anyhow, that’s what he’s countin’ on this time of year:

> Depth is 5-10′, mostly banks and transition banks going into pockets and secondary points.

> Lucky Craft Pointer 78 DD (I think it’s “flake flake golden sunfish”) with the same trebles, 6′ 9″ ML Daiwa Tatula Elite Seth Feider Jerkbait Rod, Daiwa Tatula SV 103 Reel, 10-lb Sniper.

Brent also recommends dressing old-school for more bites this time of year:

What’s the toughest bait to fish?

Some proz talkin’ — the answers might surprise ya. Gotta say, did not expect to hear wacky rig or Senko:

Lol Seth that’s you man!

Sea Foam might get that outboard going again…

…but don’t think the interior has any shot:

Lol! Charlie Hartley pic. Sea Foam Marine PRO is at Tackle Warehouse….


1. What is John Murray doing?

Guys are trying all kinds of things during this break — here’s what John’s doing:

We will continue to monitor the situation….

2. Jordan Lee’s real upset his screens aren’t big enough.

Word J-Lee tell ’em dude!

3. Elitist Scott Canterbury has new signature Halo Rods.

Don’t see ’em on TW yet….

4. FLWer Matt Becker on BassEdge Radio.

5. FLWer Blake Smith selling his 2020 Ranger.

Available Aug 1: 2020 Z521 L Intracoastal.

6. CA: DNR leaves “no fishing” rulings up to counties but….

Seems like prompted by the opening of trout season. Guess they could do what NJ did, just dump all the trout in (without saying when or where) and open it up:

> The CA Fish and Game Commission…unanimously approved emergency measures to allow counties to self-regulate recreational and sport fishing in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

> …will allow for “surgical and narrow implementation” in helping counties decide fishing regulation….

> …granted emergency authority to the director of the state Dept of Fish and Wildlife to postpone the spring trout season at the request of a few rural counties….

BUT the CA Fish and Game Commission somehow also “gave” the “ability for the CA Dept of Fish and Wildlife to temporarily delay, suspend or restrict recreational fishing….” Not sure why it’s not the governor who does that? Then again the commishes are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state senate.

Anyhow, in the other post it says:

> “Neither the Dept of Fish and Wildlife nor the Fish and Game Commission has proposed a statewide closure of statewide fishing. Neither intends to do so.”

Hope so….

7. MI: ATVs are okay to use??

Got the heads up from bass-head AB that ATVs are still okay use. So…you can trailer and gas up your ATV, but you can’t trailer and gas up your boat. I understand the ramps thing but dang.

8. AZ/UT close Powell ramps.

Supposedly to stop Covid spread AND quagga mussels. Tx to bass-head Chris C for the heads up.

Lol stealing that from Brett over at Target Walleye….

9. WY: Goldfish messing up largie fishery in Renner Rez.

Sounds like they compete for resources and get too big for the largies to eat. Doesn’t sound like the orange carp mess up trout lake fisheries tho. Here’s you some bait options:

Clockwise from top L:

> Rapala Super Shad Rap (goldfish) — I think that color is out of production for the regular Shad Rap but “crawdad” is kinda close.

> Bandit 300 in “orange crush” — I THINK Bandit used to make a goldfish color too, here’s a 200 in that color:

> Lucky Craft Kingyo — If someone dumped in some of the fat/slow kinda goldfish. Not sure if this bait is available in the US.> Joe’s Custom Baits “goldfish” color — Can be painted on just about any crank.

10. CA: Bass declined along with Perris water level (pdf).

From a study published by the DNR. Perris was low for over a decade, and sounds like the largemouth population declined too as a result of spawn/recruitment, and loss of brush habitat.

11. IL: Artificial structure as good as wood for bass.

Just a 3-month study. Doesn’t sound long enough to tell for sure, but whatever we know artificial structure works so….

12. WI: Merc Racing peeps helping with Covid stuff.

Lots of engineering talk but it involves 3D printers. I kinda hoped it’d say that they were building Merc Racing motors to give to bass anglers in need…lol but I sorta was cuz those motors are siiiiiick!

13. Rapala #FocusonFishing Challenge — win free stuff!

> Simply snap a pic or take a video of you staying motivated for the fishing season and post it tagging us @rapalausa and use the hashtag #FocusOnFishing in the caption. You must also challenge 3 or more fishing buddies by tagging them….

14. The Lunkerhunt Slash 6S is made to…slash.

They make the Sushi 110, which is a more-regular jerkbait, but the Slash 6S is a different deal — “wide, erratic, darting action.” Here’s the “turbo” color:

No “tophat” color yet:

15. Gitcha to the T-H Marine Spring Cleanin’ sale!Doodads, apparel, what have you. Got my eye on a few things like:

Clockwise from top L:

> Twist Step Emergency Jack Plate Ladder

> Performance Gloves

> Boat Cleaning Towel

> Neon Orange Short Sleeve Performance T-Shirt

16. Reaction Strike has a new jerkbait that thuds…

…instead of rattles. I think it’s new? XRM 80, 100 and 120. Peek at “chartreuse shad”:

17. Trokar is renaming/numbering its trebles.

Trokar treble hooks previously known under part numbers TK300 and TK310 as the TK934 and TK949. Reason for the change is that bigger numbers sound more important.

Kidding about that last part….

18. Win a GoPro Hero 8 from YOLOtek.

19. New DuraSafe website.

Maybe cuz the other one wasn’t…safe? Kidding….

20. Gitcha treestand seat for your boat?

From treestand makers Millennium Outdoors:

21. “Small craft advisory” change to “Small craft warning”?

National Weather Service proposal supposedly to stop confusion. Never met anyone who was confused by that but okay. NWS wants your opinion on it here. I gave ’em mine — said either was good.

22. KY: Asian carp being exported to China.

Starting this month, for food I believe. Hope they want ’em all.

Headline of the Day

Keith Combs Is the Best Bass Fisherman in Texas Waters — But He Has His Eyes Set on More

Reeeeeeeeeeaaaaally…. Not only is this a big statement — which Keith would nefer make about himself…publicly (heehee!) — it actually might be mostly true. Cuz he has done pretty dang well there. Post also said:

> This article originally appeared in the May 2020 issue of Texas Monthly with the headline “Hot Rod.”

Keith “hot rod” Combs. I like it.

Line of the Day

Kevin VanDam didn’t get to the pinnacle of the bass fishing world by being disorganized.

That’s true but a few guys did…heehee! Seriously now: These guys are ALL crazy meticulous about their stuff.

On right now…

Note: The TackleWarehouse links in this email are affiliate links, meaning if you go through them to make a purchase I might earn a commission…at no cost to you. Click here if you want to learn a little more about links in the BB.

Tip of the Day

Kevin VanDam says water temp’s overrated.

Kevin VanDam is KVD’s real name…lol. Anyhow, like I always say, Kevin knows way more than he even tells his buds, I’m sure, so anything he lets out is worth knowin’. Here’s a little from the MLFers’ website:

> …the water temperature here in MI has just barely reached 40 degrees. I’m talking upper 30s to 40 degrees…. Yet, the bass had already made a move to the bank in the 3- to 5-foot zone.

> To me, the lengthening of the daylight hours during the spring has far more to do with moving fish to the bank than water temperature…. Yes, water temperature naturally increases with daylight hours too, but when a front slams the water back down to 37 degrees and the fish are still up there in 2 or 3 feet of water — that’s the photoperiod telling them it’s time to get ready to spawn, not the water temperature.

> Last week, I fished through the full moon in April when the water temperature was 40 degrees and I saw fish already up cruising around like they were spawning. Obviously they weren’t on beds, but their behavior was identical to spawning behavior. I’ve seen this before and I’m convinced it’s a sort of false spawn that is triggered by the full moon.

> Bring in a warm wind on 40-degree water temperatures and bass will get active. The actual water temperature reading on my graph may not budge on a south wind, but the bass sure do!

I was like, “Kevin why’re you fishing when the water T is in the 30s? That’s ice cold.” And he was all:

Quote of the Day

“According to Nichols’ research, water has a calming effect on our brains.”

Someone talkin’ ’bout a book by marine biologist Wallace Nichols called “Blue Mind,” which is what that alleged “calming” effect is called. Obviously the dude never once went to a bass tourney or spent time in a boat with a pro, most of whom only get calm when they get OFF the water…hahaha true statement yo!

Pro bass-heads are like:


Shot of the Day

Great @okumura_kazumasa.official shot of our fave fish jumping right into the net — fortunate jump:


How funny is this — @webbys_adventure makin’ it happen indoors:

I think that’s the YETI Tundra 45 in “seafoam.”

Ya got me

Jay Kumar’s BassBlaster is a daily-ish roundup

of the best, worst and funniest in bassin’, as curated by me — Jay Kumar. I started, co-hosted Loudmouth Bass with Zona, was a B.A.S.S. senior writer and a bunch more in bassin’. The Blaster is the #2 daily read on any given day in the wide world o’ bass so thanks for readin’!

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