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Any Sturgeon fishing tips for a newbie?

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Hello,

I'm looking into going on a fishing trip with my brother to target some Lake Sturgeon and was wondering if anybody could help me out with rigs/setup/baits?

Appreciate any help in advance,

Andy

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ive never fished for them but ive heard that nightcrawlers at the bottom work pretty good

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You fishing the Algonac/SCR area, Andy?

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I saw Jerry McKinnis fishing for sturgeon in the Northwest and used cut bait fished on the bottom. Good luck! Like to see some pix.

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Round this way they use ghost shrimp a lot for them, hooklinks are very long, but this is in current and i think regulatory.

My friend caught one as a noob while out with a boat load of sturgeon guys on a hair rigged fishy flavoured pop up stacked with anchovys.

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macfish here. Andy, it's been a long time since I've been around. Never caught or fished for lake sturgeon but I did catch a shovelnose sturgeon on the Mississippi on a spinner many years ago. They are one of the strangest looking fish I've ever seen - kind of like a Klingon version of fish. They are quite a bit smaller and legal to keep while pallid and lake sturgeon are protected in Missouri and must be released immediately. Sturgeon are definitely on my bucket list with alligator gar and a few others. Good luck! Jonathan

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Andy, don't mess with a gob of crawlers....you'll be bothered by nuisance catfish and rock bass all night long. Get some shiners and fish them dead on 1/0 hooks. You fishing from shore or by boat? The SCR has strong current, so heavy weight is needed....when I tried there, I used 8 oz SCR sinkers and they still rolled a bit before settling. I fished them on a dropper style rig, as thats how the locals were doing it. If you are in a boat, I'd try to rig it fishfinder style however.

Find the deep holes and fish those. That's where the fish sit.

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I have never fished lake sturgeon but we have and fish White Sturgeon all the time. My sturgeon rigs are Xtra heavy 10' Ugly Sticks with Penn 330GT2 reels with 50lb Berkley big game high impact line. Most areas we fish require at least 8oz leads 1/0 hooks sometimes circle hooks when the bite is finnicky. My biggest sturgeon a 12'er barely made the rod tip twitch real soft bite and other times they bend the pole in half. The best baits are usualy cut bait from something they are used to eating. Trout, crappie, and the fish here LOVE the Green TRASH fish aka BASS lol..... We also use a lot of pickled squid. Oh forgot the sinker slides we use are plastic tubes with swivels on them set up a lot like we would use a lead clip.

When we fish from the boat you can sometimes see fish laying in a deep hole on the fish finder looks like a shelf across the bottom on the screen.

Good luck to you hope to see some pics soon. I have heard of guys back there using huge globs of nightcrawlers but everything else is going to be all over them too.

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based on catching them in the UK and France id say this.

strong gear, big reels fully loaded with line, they are eating machines (caught same one three times in a day once), very cagey feeding so if its a shallow water floats work well with slim jims as bait, otherswise runnning rigs over bolt rigs. boilies, pellets, sausage all work well, and cat or dog food in gravy is great as chum

have fun, my third favorite species after carp n wells catfish.

picture of a beast i had in france, 85lbs, size 8 hook and 10mm pop up and 90 minute fight on 15lb mono, quite an experience

post-5361-0-91412400-1371964124.jpg

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oh and also dont just release them like a carp, they go belly up, hold them in the water (this may take a while), that one i had above took 60 minutes to recover with me holding it upright in the lake

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Part about finicky bite is right. They hit like perch

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heli set up with long 16 to 20 inches hooklink (thick mono 0.60 mm) 1/0 gamakatsu hook and cut/sliced fresh fish bought from fresh market (the cheapest one), heavy gripper lead to hold bottom in heavy current 6 to 8 oz. carp rods, carp reels, barkley big game 20 lbs line that is what i use while fishing for lake sturgeon in Wisconsin.

dont bother with night crawlers

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I have a question too

Seems like everybody likes 1/0 hooks I’m always hooping for miracle sturgeon while fishing for blue cats in deep holes but I use 8/0 hooks and big bait

Looks like I need to downsize and watch for small takes, right?

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heli set up with long 16 to 20 inches hooklink (thick mono 0.60 mm) 1/0 gamakatsu hook and cut/sliced fresh fish bought from fresh market (the cheapest one), heavy gripper lead to hold bottom in heavy current 6 to 8 oz. carp rods, carp reels, barkley big game 20 lbs line that is what i use while fishing for lake sturgeon in Wisconsin.

dont bother with night crawlers

Great advice Paul. How does the sliced fish get put on the hook? Or does it go on a hair rig?

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Many thanks for the responses, feedback and personal messages with rigs and what not. Much appreciated!

I'll be fishing from a boat during the evening and throughout the night, then early morning trolling for walleye. Big Cats are on the list to catch so tangling with a few of them would be inviting.

Will actually be a multi species outing with Sturgeon, big cats, carp, walleye, musky, and pike as the target list....big emphasis on the Sturgeon though :)

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Alex a 1/0 hook is much larger that a 8/0 big hook and a big chunk of fishy flesh tends to do the trick. Slimy I just run the hook through and push it up the line a little and run the hook through again. That way the bait stays on the hook but there is enough hook showing to get a good hook set. I also sometimes need to use some elastic string to keep some softer baits on.

Here is a little one my uncle caught think it was 10 or 12 foot I dont remember

post-5524-0-47305500-1372122150.jpg

Edited by Idaho Carpin

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Thanks for explaining that Idaho Carpin.

Dang! That is a huge fish, looks like a shark!

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Slimy I just run the hook through and push it up the line a little and run the hook through again. That way the bait stays on the hook but there is enough hook showing to get a good hook set. I also sometimes need to use some elastic string to keep some softer baits on.

That is exactly how i put bait on hook.

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