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The Forgotten End of the Temperature Spectrum: Winter Fishing

We often think about what happens to fish as water temperatures heat up in the summer, but neglect to consider the other end of the temperature spectrum. This is true in fisheries science as well — perhaps you could chalk it up to scientists favoring fair weather field work — there are many more studies that examine the impacts of warm water on fish than cold.  The lack of studies, however, does not mean that the subject area is unimportant. Especially in temperate and more northern (or southern) latitudes, fish spend a considerable proportion of their lives contending with cold water temps.

Below is some biologically relevant information on how fish respond to cold water temperatures, as well as some insights from studies on ice fishing. Combined, these scientific facts provide some considerations and precautions that anglers should take when fishing during the winter months.

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