In this section you will find information on the various types of bass. This includes Largemouth, rock, smallmouth and white bass. Included is information on the bait types and the areas that they are found in a body of water.
Largemouth Bass are abundant through the waters of Toronto. Largemouth Bass is one of the best game fish in North America. When the season opens in late June action picks up in the shallows of the water. Largemouth keep to the shallow weedy areas. They eat insects, small fish, crawfish, bait fish and frogs. When targeting Largemouth use baits that are similar to these to provide the best results. When the sun is out bass stay to the sheltered areas such as under docks, tree cover and lily pads. When there is cloud cover or rain, bass are more difficult to locate as they can be anywhere shallow. Still cast to shallow areas as it is a preference area for them.
The best time of day is the first few hours after sunrise and a few hours before sunset. If it is a cloudy day bass will also feed in the afternoon as well. Ensure that there is some vegetation as they prefer to be in these spots. Bass will eat almost any small sized fish such as blue gill, perch and round goby. Largemouth are able to consume fish that are up to fifty percent of their size due to their large mouths. Lures that are most effective are spinner baits, crank baits jerk baits, jigs and poppers. Having these imitate fish in the ecosystem are optimal. Largemouth are only open in late June and vary from zone to zone. Some open the third Saturday in June and other zones open the fourth Saturday in June and some later in the season.
Rock bass are the underrated fish of the bass species. Known for their bright red eyes and larger mouths. Average rock bass size is between half a pound to a pound in size with the current world record being over three pounds. Rock bass are in many of Toronto’s bodies of water. Their habitat consists of a rocky bottom accompanied with minor seaweed in the area. The water depth is normally quite shallow and they can be found along most shoreline waters. For their size they are decent fighting fish and can provide great angling action.
Fishing line does not matter as much and you can use a leader to reel one in. Best bait to use is worms. Some small minnow baits may be effective thanks to their larger mouths but worms are best. Rock Bass are normally in the same spots as sunfish and perch. Have a weight on the line to ensure it can get passed the all the other fish to the bottom. Rock Bass like to stay along the bottom of the water. Some small artificial baits may be effective such as ones that imitate salamanders and bugs. Slight jerking motion along the bottom lifting the bait about three inches up and down.
Smallmouth bass are similar to largemouth bass, but do not reach the same size. Smallmouth put up a great fight and are in a majority of the bodies of water in Toronto. Smallmouth love weedy shallow areas just like Largemouth but are attracted to slightly cooler waters. So in a bay the Largemouth will normally be farthest away from the entrance of a larger lake due to the warmer temperature and small mouth will be closer to the entrance. This is the story at Frenchman’s Bay, where small mouth reside on the southern side of the bay. Smallmouth are also not open all year, so be sure to check when bass are open in the zone you are fishing in prior to casting.
Smallmouth can be caught with a variety of different lures. Anglers have best luck using spinners, minnow baits, crank baits along with soft plastic baits that imitate small bugs, frogs and crawfish. For live baits stick to minnows and worms if your lake or stream allows live bait. Best times to fish are the first few hours after the sun rises along with the last few hours before the sun sets. Bass can be found along the shorelines of most lakes in the weedy shallows. During the day when the sun is out they take cover under shade provided by trees, logs, docks or lily pads.
White bass swim upstream in search of spawning locations in the early spring. The males are the first to go up stream usually led by the smaller sized and then the larger ones follow. Then the female white bass begin to make their way up stream in search of a mate. Prior to this run white bass can be found in the creeks and rivers around Toronto and have similar habitat locations to both largemouth and smallmouth. During these runs anglers can enjoy fast paced action. Also some bays and rivers in Toronto have White bass year round. Be sure to check the fishing hotspots to find out which fish are in which body of water.
White bass are great fighting fish and don’t generally go to deeper waters. Fishing for white bass during the summer months may be difficult unless the fish are on the way back down the stream. For lures crank baits, minnow baits and spinners are perfect for catching white bass. For live bait use worms and minnows if live bait is permitted. Look for pockets in rivers that are about five feet deep as this is an idea spot to see a White bass. White bass diet consists of, small fish, frogs, crawfish along with some large insects.