• July 2010 - Volume 12, Number 12


    Shortly after antler shedding is complete, whitetail bucks of all ages begin the process of developing new antlers. By the sultry days of July, velvet racks grow rapidly, creating distinct formations.

    As the days become longer, the process of “photoperiod” takes hold — stimulating more hormonal growth for bucks. More available sunlight allows changes to unfold with a buck’s pituitary gland, producing hormones that significantly contribute to bone and tissue growth. Other natural works play into antler development as well.

    This time of year, Ross Barnett crappie seem to fall in love with the trees.

    Every fisherman has his favorite pattern to be on the water fishing. Bass anglers love to pick big sows off their bedding grounds. Crappie fishermen keep their eyes peeled for the dogwoods to bloom when the tasty panfish invade the shallows. Catfish anglers yearn for summer nights when big cats go on the prowl.

    Fish this section of the Chunky River, and you’ll feel like you’ve hit the bass jackpot.

    As we neared the shoals area just below the Highway 80 Bridge east of Chunky, we eased the anchor out and began fishing. Although the water was unusually muddy and turbulent for this time of year, I cast a crawfish-colored Bomber Mini A onto the rocky shoals, and a nice spotted bass promptly nailed it.

    Tripletails flood the Mississippi coast this month, providing unmatched fun and unrivaled eating.

    I have to name the tripletail as my favorite fish to catch and eat from the Gulf of Mexico. You must employ stealth to get close enough to cast to them, but an accurate cast will almost always draw a strike. Once a tripletail is on the line, you must move quickly to get it away from ropes, chains and buoys.

    Some guys seem to harvest a big buck every season. That’s because they make good use of this time of the year.

    Bagging a trophy-class whitetail is truly the experience of a lifetime. For most deer hunters, one is all they get. Many seasoned sportsman are completely satisfied to have achieved the accomplishment. They got their 15 minutes of fame, got the bragging mount and can relive the whole episode at the drop of a camo hat.

    For many deer hunters, that is the question.

    The practice of deer management has grown by leaps and bounds in the Magnolia State over the past few decades. Most whitetail enthusiasts understand that there are three primary factors that have an impact both on body size and antler quality — age, nutrition and genetics.

    Believe it or not, there may not be a better time to fish topwaters for bass than in the blistering heat of July.

    Casting topwater plugs in the middle of a lake with the scorching rays of the July sun beating down isn’t what the average angler would consider an ideal day of bass fishing.

    Sure it's hot, but the bass are biting. Fish the edges of daylight, and you'll have a summertime blast.