Are You Ready to Slay Dinosaurs? Fishing for Bowfin

It’s a hot Saturday morning in late July, it hasn’t rained for several weeks.

The water levels have finally fallen back into shorelines of the oxbow lakes off the Santee Cooper river system.

This morning as you slide your kayak into the water you fix your sights on one thing, catching a dinosaur..

AKA… one of the few living things remaining from the Jurassic period, a Bowfin!

Considered a nuisance fish by both Bass and Catfish anglers the bowfin is an often ignored fish which is a shame.

Pound for pound the bowfin is as strong as or stronger than any other fish found in the lake.

Bowfins are a very strong fish with a crushing bite and a mouth full of teeth that can tear up tackle at will.

I’ve seen Bowfin absolutely destroy $16 spinner baits like they were made of tin foil and paper clips so save your expensive tackle for Bass.

You don’t need to sacrifice it to catch Bowfin.

Bowfin will hit a number of baits so there is no need to use your most expensive tackle, let me make some suggestions.

For soft plastics I like to throw zoom trick worms in “Junebug” or “Bubblegum” color.

One of the few living things remaining from the Jurassic period, a Bowfin!

Berkley power worms in black with chartreuse tail or a Zman Crawz in “molting craw” color Texas rigged spinnerbaits and chatterbaits work great.

But again save your high dollar ones; instead go to Walmart and pick up 3-4 $1 spinnerbaits in white and blue and red and yellow.

Then buy a $3.50 bag of white curly tail grubs, for less than $10 you are good for the day+.

If throwing spinner baits are not a confidence bait for you, pick up a couple of $4 Zman chatterbaits from Wal-Mart.

So for about $20 you could get a couple of spinner baits, a bag of grubs, a chatter bait and a bag of trick worms.

With some hooks and bullet weights and that’s all that you need to slay a dinosaur.

A personal observation I have made with bowfin is that when they surface to sip air they return to the bottom nearly in the same spot that they surfaced.

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Knowing this you can throw a bait to that immediate area with a reasonably good chance of eliciting a strike.

But especially in shallower waters where your bait can get to the bottom fairly quickly.

This year Lowcountry Kayak Anglers will be putting on the 2nd Annual Jurassic Classic.

A kayak fishing tournament for Bowfin! The event will take place on August 1st and is open to all kayak anglers, check out our facebook page for more details.

Also the species for the Lowcountry Kayak Anglers (LKA) Angler of the Year (AOY) Competition for August is the Bowfin.

if you want to participate in our AOY competition go to our website for more details!

Good Luck and Tight Lines
Mike Kohler
LKA Tournament Director


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