Home Fishing Tips & Advice Are Feeder Creeks Good for Fishing?

Are Feeder Creeks Good for Fishing?

No matter the equipment, no matter the technique, and no matter the bait – if an angler visits a body of water hoping to reel in the catch of the day without inspecting and understanding the area, all they have is luck (and luck can strikeout).

Feeder creeks are tributaries for lakes and freshwater bodies. They’re smaller bodies of water, although larger ones might be considered as separate arms of the lake itself.

Feeder Creeks are great for fishing, known for having catfish, flatheads, and several other types of freshwater fish. However, anglers visit feeder creeks for their main attraction – the bass.

Feeder creeks provide for a steady stream of oxygenated water, nutrients, and ideal vegetation. All of which favors an ideal habitat for bass. Anglers looking especially for bass shouldn’t look further than feeder creeks. Likewise, anglers looking to reel in more catch should also visit feeder creeks. 

Identifying Feeder Creeks

Where there’s a lake, there’s a feeder creek. Anglers on online platforms are most active in threads surrounding feeder creek catch given how the bass is probably one of the sea’s treasures. It doesn’t matter whether the feeder creek is large enough to be considered as a separate arm for the lake or barely trickles towards it, what matters is the ecosystem that it provides. 

A feeder creek has everything an angler would want if they’re out looking for bass; the perfect nutrients, ideal oxygen levels, and also hiding spots for the fish!

Finding the Perfect Feeder Creek:

As aforementioned, if an angler wants to go off of luck along – they’ll hardly get a good day out of their fishing trip. This is why experienced anglers recommend doing your due diligence before embarking on the trip. With feeder creeks, the conditions are ideal for bass to thrive and you’re likely to find a good catch. However, this isn’t the sole cause.

The creek’s features help in determining whether or not there’s bass all year-round. Ideal creeks will be shallow (between four to six feet), drain into channels with rock-based bottoms, and flow at least 100 yards from the mouth of the creek into the lake during rainfall.

Speaking of rainfall, peak times to go bass fishing are when rainfalls runoff and enter the lake. This increases the waters’ oxygen concentration and temperature.

The Right Season

Feeder creeks are highly oxygenated and provide aquatic vegetation with adequate (if not ideal) conditions to thrive. This coupled with the sea’s natural nutrients is why you’re likely to find bass in this body of water. However, whether the feeder-creek provides bass all year round is something to identify based on the season: pre-spawn and after the spawn.

Fishing During Prespawn

Pre spawn is the ideal time of the year for catching bass – they’re at their heaviest and tend to show up easier. You’ll usually find bass concentrated at the mid-average level over the superficial or deeper levels. The idea that a bass migrates is purely a myth. However, this doesn’t mean that the same bass won’t be easier to catch during pre-spawn.

During pre-spawn, bass tends to move towards the rear end of the feeder-creek in deeper waters. This is also the time of the year when the bass is at its most aggressive. Which means anglers will have to put in everything they’ve got while reeling it in.

The lake level can either be high or low during pre-spawn:

  • If the level of the lake is low, anglers tend to throw in suspended stick bait. During the day time while the water level tends to rise, the stick bait is replaced with a medium diving crankbait. You could alternatively use spinnerbait if the bass is found nearer to the ‘camouflage’ area at the base. That is the bottom-most layer with bushes and twigs.
  • If the level of water is high, key on flats that have a bottom contour change. This change is from mud to sand and is mixed in with a few rocks. Ideally, you should be using a Carolina rigged six or eight inched plastic lizard.

What is the camouflage area?

Towards the bottom of the feeder creek, the conditions mimic those of a relative reservoir. The area is filled with plants, bushes, boulders, and twigs for the bass to hide in. Most adult bass is found in these deeper layers and is also anglers preferred catch.

The contents of this area vary based on the stream. For example; a stream flowing into a clear reservoir (found in highlands) will contain cool and clear water with a gravel bottom. On the other hand, a stream flowing into farmland (lowland) reservoir will contain muddy water and have a mud base. 

After the spawn

After the spawn, bass will move towards the breaks at the ending of the flats. These breaks run about ten to twelve feet and then drain into creek channels about fifty feet deep. 

At this point, the bass will be found over stumps or rocks in the breaks. To catch them, anglers will use soft jerk bait or topwater walking bait. Why? Because the bait will attract strikes from the bass are settled. Alternatively, you could use a Carolina rigged deep cranking if conditions in the channel are warmer. 

The Carolina bait will generate bass along the feeder creek to areas where they’re more visible. With the help of shallow-diving crankbaits, plastic worms, spinnerbaits, or jigs you can sail your boat as far up the creek as is possible and catch bass circling any current breaks.

Final Thoughts

Where there’s a lake, there’s a feeder creek. Feeder creeks are freshwater tributaries that provide ideal conditions for several prized fish to thrive – predominantly bass. Which is why anglers tend to frequent feeder creeks to catch one of water’s most prized treasures. 

However, while the conditions may be ideal, experienced anglers suggest that beginners familiarize themselves with the conditions of the feeder-creek before embarking on their fishing trip. Pack the right bait, inspect the area, and get fishing!