TYLER, Texas — It's been a long, hot summer but it seems as if East Texas anglers are still catching fish. We recently took a little boat trip on Lake Tyler to find out where to fish, when to fish and what bait to use.
We asked DJ Myers and Zack Sheehy to give us some tips as we mixed in the challenge of summer bass fishing and conservation.
Built in 1949, Lake Tyler is a 2,400-acre lake that is home to boats, jet skis, swimmers and fishing. It’s also a major drinking water source, which means keeping the lake clean is a priority.
The fishing, boating and recreation communities must get along, especially on weekends. That’s why we came on a quieter weekday morning.
We came to fishing spots where the lake grass grows. Summer mornings, the bass typically search this type of shelter for bait fish and frogs. So, we tossed some top water lures.
But on our morning fishing adventure, the water rapidly warmed. It rose to the 90s by the afternoon and the fish were already offshore. So we had to find where the bait fish were hiding, chances are the bass were not far behind.
So we fired up the electronics, found the bait fish, switched to plastic worms and it was the right call. Sheehy caught four bass, DJ caught one, and I caught one on a shaky head as I went low and slow through a brush pile.
Of course, any time we are fishing for bass during a Hooked On East Texas segment we catch and release. Speaking of catch and release, Myers and Sheehy organize weekly fishing tournaments on Lake Tyler and Lake Jacksonville. All tournaments are catch and release. That means anglers must think about their live wells, keeping water temperatures low and oxygen levels high so fish can stay alive.
Myers said that's a key when it comes to fishing tournaments on smaller lakes.
"And that’s a big thing with tournaments," Myers said. "That we do not want to see, any dead fish and you know home owners (if they) see fish floating and stuff and they (can say), 'well that’s the reason we don’t like tournaments on smaller lakes.'”
And that's why anglers and even recreational boaters need to pay attention to conservation.