New Smartbaits provide attractive lure for anglers

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Many readers will recall seeing little green lizards commonly called chameleons on their decks and around plants where they feed on harmful insects.

One trait the creatures enjoy is being able to change color to fit their environment. They can change from green to brown and vice versa, but if they’re placed on camouflage, they won’t know which way to turn in the mixes of browns, greens, blacks and yellows. So they rush off, screaming, into the woods! (Not!)

What all this is leading to are Smartbaits – lures that actually change color chameleon-like from chartreuse to red or watermelon to june bug in warm to cold water. The baits’ bellies appear to be bleeding, according to Smartbaits owners Leslee and Michael Dingman. Both the soft and hard baits are able to do this, they said.

“Predator fish, like bass, hone in on those colors of vulnerable or injured smaller fish and attack. Our slogan is, ‘Color changes everything.’ We believe this is the biggest thing to hit the fishing industry in years,” Leslee said.

What will they think of next?

Fishing report

THURMOND LAKE

Capt. David Willard, U.S. Coast Guard-licensed, fulltime professional guide specializing in hybrids, striped bass and trophy largemouth bass. Boat phone: (706) 214-0236. (803) 637-6379 (www.crockettstriperfishing.com) – Water temperature is 52 degrees, the lake is slightly stained and rising. I’m catching more fish during the afternoon after the lake heats up than I am in the cooler mornings. March is a transition month, with great fishing right around the corner. I’m catching fish on blueback herring pulled behind planer boards in the Parksville area in 6 to 12 feet of water.

William Sasser’s Guide Service, (Capt. William Sasser, Capt. Bradd Sasser, Capt. Andrew Tubbs, U.S. Coast Guard-licensed, full time professional guides specializing in crappies, hybrids and striped bass). (706) 589-5468 (William), (Bradd) (706) 267-4313, (Andrew) (803) 507-5083 – We’ve had to do a lot of rescheduling this week because of inclement weather. Randy and Debbie Book, of Columbia, came out with us and caught a nice mess of crappies on small shiners fished over the tops of trees in 30 feet of water. We also fished a company trip from Garnto Industrial on a cold day and caught nine nice stripers on planer boards in 20 feet of water.

Check out our Facebook page for up-to-date pictures.

Clarks Hill Herring Hut, (Capt. Bradd Sasser) (864) 333-2000 – Yellow perch are spawning in the river with nice fish being caught on medium minnows fished on the bottom below the dam. Congratulations to Tom Lewis for catching a Georgia state record fish of 2 pounds, 9 ounces. In the lake, bank fishermen are catching hybrids on live herring fished on the bottom on the major points. Nighttime cable fishing at the dam is catching a few fish. Meanwhile crappies are moving to the backs of coves to spawn.

MERRY LAND

BRICKYARD PONDS

Check-in station, 1408 Doug Barnard Parkway, Gene Kirkland, (706) 722-8263 – Plans are being made to hold a bowfishing tournament on the ponds. Anyone who has the knowledge of how to operate such an event is asked to call Gene Kirkland. Last Saturday’s bass tournament winners were Robert Hughes and Josh Brasher with three bass weighing 4.22 pounds. No one caught a big fish so the $168 pot carries over until this week. The tournament continues this week and runs from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. Memberships are still available. See Gene for details.

Brickyard report: Jimmy Locks caught four bass, 17 crappies and one yellow perch in the Garden Pond on minnows and jigs. Ray Smith caught six bass on crank baits and plastic worms in the Expressway Pond. Annette Baker caught 16 crappies, four catfish and one bass on minnows and worms in the Ditch. Jamie Hornsby caught 28 crappies and two bass on minnows in the Stick Pond. Lock and dam report (Savannah River): Joe Johnson caught 12 shellcrackers, one bass and six yellow perch on worms and minnows. John Forte caught two stripers on live shad. Gene Sullens caught nine redhorse suckers on red worms. Sue Jones and Margaret Horn caught eight channel catfish, nine bream and four yellow perch on worms and minnows.

SAVANNAH, GA.

Miss Judy Charters, Capt. Judy Helmey, (912) 897-4921 (www.missjudycharters.com.) P.O. Box 30771, Savannah, Ga. 31410-0771 – Inshore fishermen are still battling cold water conditions, with water temperatures hovering in the mid 50s. If you want to catch fish, you’ve got to go first! Mud minnows are great year-around baits. With artificial reefs being dominated by black sea bass, sheepshead have already moved back inshore, with bridge and dock pilings the places to try. Vemilion snapper season opens April 1, grouper season comes in May 1 and black sea bass season starts June 1.


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