Gizzard and threadfin shad are Florida's most common pelagic, open-water species. 

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Sick Bass Remedy

Red Sores on Bass and How to Help

When fishing during the hot summer months many times anglers will catch bass that show signs of bacterial infections. If you simply let the fish go after a hard battle,the tired bass will be too stressed to overcome the Infection. ​External infections of illness often take the form of red spots or rashes on the sides of the fish. The slime layer on a fish protects it from the natural bacteria soup that fish are exposed to during ninety-degree water temperatures in late summer. Any slight removal of this slime layer by anglers practicing catch and release will allow these bacteria to rapidly invade the exposed areas. Anglers can help fish overcome these infections by holding them in a live well treated with salt-based additives. It is very important that anglers who practice this doctoring technique turn the live wells to constant on. At ninety degrees, the loss of oxygen in a live well from fish respiration is measured in minutes and the harm of a low-oxygen live well will overcome any good attempted by this salt treatment. Salt added at a 1-3% rate (2 ounces of salt per 10 gallons of water) will do the job. Try this remedy next time you catch a fish like the one in this photograph showing signs of infection, you will be rewarded with maintaining a healthy population of bass in your lake.

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Forage Fish

predators readily eat

the other fish that swim and are eaten by bass

Alabama and Hickory shad are found with Gizzard shad in lakes outside of Florida.

TIP:  if you find the stripers, the shad are nearby. Striped bass are also pelagic and closely follow shad schools.