Bass Fishing in the United States

While bass also have a keen sense of smell, it doesn’t affect the fish’s eating habits or other behaviors. Olfaction, or sense of smell, is much more important to deep water fish without the give of great eyesight like the bass in order to target food sources or sniff out danger. Bass use their sense of smell at time to find protection or to forage, but the sense is mainly the source of migrational accuracy, allowing the bass to find its way back to a particular spawning ground it prefers, as well as to communicate with each other when the eggs have been laid. Sometimes, it comes in handy for smelling preyfish from up to 25 feet away, since the preyfish are made of amino acids (the base that builds protein), and these emit a certain smell when frightened. Also, the sense of taste in bass doesn’t really cause them to prefer one bait over another. Note that using a bass fishing bait that is highly pungent may mask the smell of humans and make the bait seem more real to the fish, meaning it will hold on longer.

As you can see, while the senses of the bass are somewhat primitive, they are also quite sharp, and understanding how they affect the behavior and mentality of them can make your bass fishing trips more productive because your intuition will help to guide you in the correct technique to lure them in.

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Dan Eggertsen is a fellow bass fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on bass fishing since 2004.

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