Knowing Bass: A Scientific Approach to Catching More Fish

Knowing Bass: A Scientific Approach to Catching More Fish


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Bass, especially largemouth bass, are easily the single most popular freshwater gamefish in the United States. Knowing Bass is a book about the science of bass fishing, with particular emphasis on the bass itself: What bass can sense, how they use their senses to feed, how they relate to fishing lures, and ultimately how they interact with anglers. Understanding why bass behave as they do will greatly improve your chances of being a better and more successful angler, no matter your present skill level. And that's the purpose behind this book, to improve everyone's chances of success at catching bass, no matter where or how they fish.A renowned aquatic biologist and expert in the field of bass behavior, Dr. Jones has made the finest and most up-to-date scientific research accessible to everyone who loves these great gamefish. Whether you fish with bait-casting, spinning, or fly tackle, the more you know about bass, the more and bigger fish you will catch. Topics covered include bass biology; life history; the bass's organs of vision, hearing, smell, and taste, including the smells and flavors bass like-and don't like; how smell and taste control feeding behavior; the best kinds of lures to trigger the attack response in various situations; what factors will make bass strike your lures and baits - and what might make them shy away. (6 1/4 x 9 1/4, 320 pages, color photos, b&w photos, charts)Keith A. Jones, Ph.D. brings a unique professional perspective to the task of illuminating bass senses and behavior. For sixteen years he has studied bass intensively as Director of Fish Research at the Berkley Fish Research Center in Spirit Lake, Iowa. The Center is dedicated to the study of bassand other gamefish, most notably their attack behaviors, for the purpose of designing improved lures and baits.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781585745234
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 06/01/2002
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.26(h) x 1.01(d)

Table of Contents

Chapter 1Bass Basics1
Taxonomy and General Biology1
Early Life History: The Making of a Carnivore8
Piscivore Tuning14
Chapter 2Brain, Learning, and Instincts17
Nervous System of the Bass18
Nerve Cells: The Basic Units18
Peripheral and Central Nervous Systems19
Spinal and Cranial Nerves25
Sensory Processing and Motor Commands28
Chapter 3Chemoreception39
The Chemical Environment of Water40
Organs of Smell and Taste42
Converting Chemicals to Brain Signals48
Chemical Sensitivity55
Smells and Flavors Bass Like55
How Smell and Taste Control Feeding58
Stage 1Arousing the Sleeping Giant59
Stage 2Launching the Search60
Stage 3Assessing the Odor64
Stage 4Running the Taste Test65
Chemical Lures67
Scent Roles: To Ooze or Not to Ooze69
Actives and Non-actives78
Chemical Repellents80
Chapter 4Hearing and Vibration Detection87
The Acoustical Environment of Water88
Bass Acoustic Detectors92
The Lateral Line System93
The Ear94
Converting Sound to Brain Signals98
How the Lateral Line Works101
How the Inner Ear Works102
Acoustic Tuning105
Lateral Line Tuning105
Inner Ear Tuning106
Acoustic Control of Feeding109
Stage 1Arousal and Far-field Sensations110
Stage 2Finding the Target118
Stage 3The Final (Near-field) Analysis120
Acoustic Lures122
Sounds Bass Like128
Sound Repellents131
Chapter 5Vision135
The Photic Environment137
Light Absorption138
Light Scattering141
The Eye143
Converting Light to Brain Signals146
The Visual Field150
Day Versus Night Vision154
Photopic Vision and Color Perception156
Scotopic Vision163
Motion Detection166
Visual Lures171
Color and Contrast179
The Strike Zone190
Chapter 6Senses of the Skin195
The Thermal and Acid/Base Environment197
The Somatic Senses201
Environmental Sensors205
Sensing Temperature205
Sensing pH207
Central Monitors208
Behavioral Regulation209
pH Regulation217
Acclimation: The Physiological Response217
Thermal Acclimation: The Winter Plunge219
Springtime: Relief from the Cold222
pH Acclimation: A Different Case223
Angling Through the Seasons224
Finding Active Bass227
Chapter 7Pain and Stress235
Pain in Humans237
Pain in Bass(?)239
Escape Reactions243
The Bass Stress Response245
Stress and Angling249
Minimizing Stress253
Minimizing Angling Stress254
Minimizing Stress in Livewells255
Minimizing Stress During Tournament Weigh-Ins260
Chapter 8Super Lures263
Sensory-Matched Lures265
Multisensory Lures273
Future Research279

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