The Quick And Simple Guide On How To Catch Shad

The Quick And Simple Guide On How To Catch Shad

Many may think that fishing is an easy task from the looks of it. However, the knowledge and skills it takes to achieve a successful fishing trip may vary depending on which type of fish you’re aiming to catch. Also, there are different ways of fishing that you can learn and master. Catching shads, for example, is tricky. You must combine your core skills and learned techniques if you’re aiming for a great fishing expedition. If you want to acquire these tips and tricks on how to catch shad, stick around as we will give you more details about them.


What You’ll Need

1. Fishing Rod

Eagle Claw Featherlight 3/4 Line Weight Fly Rod, 2 Piece (Yellow, 6-Feet 6-Inch), 4/5 weight

Eagle Claw Featherlight 3/4 Line Weight Fly Rod, 2 Piece (Yellow, 6-Feet 6-Inch), 4/5 weight. Via:

A 7 footer lightweight spinning or fiberglass rod will do best to fish for shads.

Last update on 2017-09-08 PST - Details

2. Fishing Line

When it comes to the fishing line, a four to six pound mono will work perfectly with your lightweight or fiberglass rod.

Last update on 2017-09-08 PST - Details

KastKing DuraBlend Monofilament Leader Line - Premium Saltwater Mono Leader Materials - Big Game Spool Size 120Yds/110M - Great Substitute for Fluorocarbon Leader Line - ICAST Award Winning Brand. Via:

KastKing DuraBlend Monofilament Leader Line - Premium Saltwater Mono Leader Materials - Big Game Spool Size 120Yds/110M - Great Substitute for Fluorocarbon Leader Line - ICAST Award Winning Brand

3. Baits and Lures

  • Flys - the most commonly used bait.
  • Beads - for fishing in colder waters and casting line upstream.
  • Darts - for fishing in deeper water since the sink deeper and faster.

What’s A Shad?

With a massive size and a weight around three to eight pounds, the shad is one of the most flavorful fishes that are found in North America. It belongs to the anadromous clupeid species of fish and is also known to be one of the better baits. It often filleted, fried in butter, or baked. The eggs of a female shad are also considered a delicacy.

They are also regarded as having significant nutritional value since they are very in omega 3. Most fishes and seafood may do so, but the shads, in particular, contain twice as much compared to that of salmons. Moreover, shads also provide very low toxin levels.

Shads feed on planktons, but they also survive by eating small fishes, shrimps, and fish eggs. They swim up fresh rivers during the time of spawning. Spawning fishes choose shallow places that are sandy or filled with pebbles for depositing their eggs.

An estimated 156,000 eggs are deposited by a large shad and females release eggs in batches of 30,000. They are also considered as a schooling fish and are often seen during spring and summer.

During winter and autumn seasons, shads are hardest to find since they tend to get into deep waters.

Catching shads can really be a challenge especially if you’re not yet experienced in finding the right location and determining the suitable method. To make things easier, we’re sharing tips too on how you can catch shad.

How To Catch Shads

1. Knowing Where And When To Catch Shad

River bank

River bank

With every fishing experience, it is suggested that you have some knowledge on where and when it is best to catch shads. Shads, like other fishes, go similarly.

First, you must know where the perfect location is along with the best season to fish for shads. Always remember that shads spend their time between the sea and coastal rivers depending on their spawning season.

In non-spawning seasons, shads spend their time in the sea. However, they swim up to coastal rivers when it's time for them to spawn. Dubbed as the “poor man’s salmon,” they share this similar behavior during spawning seasons.

Since shads swim upstream during these times, it is best to fish for them where the current is high. They usually linger below rocks around river bends.

Also, the best time to fish for shad is during spring and summer. It is the time when they are swimming up coastal rivers to spawn. During autumn and winter, shads go back to the ocean and usually get into deep waters.

2. Choose The Right Gear

Fishing Gear

Fishing Gear

Next is choosing the right gear. For this, you have an option to use a fishing rod or a casting net. When using a fishing rod, choose something that is lightweight spinning or a fiberglass fly rod. A 7 footers with a smooth drag reel system can easily take on an adult shad.

Along with this, you need to consider on using the right bait and lures. Flys are the most commonly used bait, but there are varieties that you can also consider to increase your chances of a catch.

When fishing in colder waters, you can opt to use beads and make sure to cast them upstream. On the other hand, darts can be used when fishing in deeper water since they sink deeper and faster.

If in case you choose to fish using a net, always look into the most appropriate kind of mesh for it. Eventually, smaller-sized shads will fall through nets with larger mesh holes. Normally, shad casting nets have ½ inch mesh and are around 7 feet in circumference.

3. Knowing Effective Techniques

Now that you have the necessary knowledge on where and when to catch shads along with the appropriate gears or tools to use, you can proceed to look into the techniques you can use during your fishing expedition.

During your fishing trip, you will notice that shads usually have their behavioral pattern. Shads are usually found around sources of light during mornings. While they opt to stay in warmer waters during nighttime, try finding an obvious line of shads as well.

Rather than traveling in big groups like other schools of fish, shads are known to go in single file lines. Finally, always try to be more patient and cast your line on the same spot more than once.

Final Thoughts

Caught Shad

Caught Shad

Mastering the skills and the know-hows when it comes to shad fishing will require a lot of experience. Every fishing trip you will go to will also give you different scenarios that you can learn from.

With those skills and the core knowledge about how to catch shads, you are now on your way to becoming better.

Are you able to learn new things about shad fishing through this article? Will you be using the tips we have shared on your next shad fishing adventure? Do you have other ideas and suggestion regarding this topic?

If you have inquiries, questions or feedbacks, you can let us know about them by leaving a comment below. Until then, we hope that you enjoy your next shad fishing expedition and happy catching!

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Louella Trump

Hi there, I’m Louella Trump, an adventurous young lady who loves exploring our beautiful nature by traveling and fishing. I write so as to share my passion and experiences with fellow readers who enjoy fishing and traveling as one of their recreational activities. My primary objective in sharing my experiences while traveling and fishing is to basically inspire any like-minded person out there to stop at nothing and leave no stone unturned in ensuring that they explore their passion as much as they can.

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