I’m definitely one of those folks who loves fishing in the summer. Lots of people are after catfish and bass. Some are after crappie and bluegill.

redear sunfishBluegill and other sunfish species are the most dependable fish to target during the summer months. They’re highly aggressive, love the warm water, and are very plentiful in most Missouri waters.

If you’re a fan of the clear, cool Ozark streams like Current River, Black River, or the Jacks Fork, you’re probably partial to the longear sunfish and shadow bass, aka goggle-eye. And if you haven’t fished for them, you’re really missing out! They’re beautiful, hard fighting, and absolutely delicious eating.

Longears are usually found in shallower backwaters, not of the main current. They nest in these shallows and are pretty easy to find, as they viciously guard their nesting areas. You’ll often find several nests close together, making for some fantastic fishing action.

Their numbers are excellent, and they’re prolific spawners, so taking a few to eat doesn’t hurt anything at all. Casting a worm or cricket on a #6 hook usually does the job, but fly fishing aficionados can also target them with wooly buggers, popping bugs, and rubber spiders.

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