Change Your Thinking About Soft Plastics For Fall Bass

Frogs aren’t shimmery and silver. That is true. However, if you were to use that observation to discount the Disco Ball color of the BOOYAH Pad Crasher, you’d be missing an important aspect of the story.  A soft-plastic frog isn’t only used to imitate a frog, and a day’s most productive frog color often excels because it suggests the bass’ forage in an area.

During autumn, shad are the forage that drive the bass’ behavior in many areas. Dense shad schools draw bass into areas during fall, and bass in those areas have shad on their minds – constantly. Many anglers throw spinnerbaits, crankbaits and hard topwater lures during autumn, relying mostly on shad colors. Those are outstanding options, but they don’t always fit the mood of the bass and won’t necessarily work in all the places where bass will be holding. That’s where shimmery metallic soft-plastic lures, even in shapes that aren’t decidedly shad-like and with presentations that aren’t traditionally associated with imitating shad, can be difference makers.

Fall Shad Influence

Jason Christie with Disco Ball Pad Crasher bass

Shad provide vital forage for bass throughout the year in countless rivers, lakes and reservoirs, but their role in dictating bass behavior and consequently bass fishing patterns gets magnified during fall. Schools of shad move up creek and river arms of reservoirs and stray shallower this time of year.

The bass, which are wanting to “feed up” before winter slows their metabolism and draws their food back to deeper water, follow the shad up the creeks and into shallower water. Up the creeks, the bass find comfortable temperatures throughout the water column and an abundance of cover, often including laydowns, stumps, dock, riprap and various vegetation.

The hyper-abundance of shad can be both good and bad for anglers. It draws the bass shallower, where it’s generally easy to make good presentations, and makes likely fish-holding area more obvious. That said, it also can make the fish fussier. With SO MUCH available forage the bass instinctively become more selective, and sometimes that selectivity is color related. When flashy, silvery forage is so abundant, the fish will sometimes reject anything that doesn’t flash.

It’s worth noting that the bass won’t always be right in the baitfish school. If shad are abundant on a big flat in a creek, you can bet bass are nearby. However, they might be buried in brush, up in the grass or using shoreline cover, even if the cover is away from the edge of the shad school.

Disco Ball

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