Reflections on the behavior of the perch
At one time, I “shoveled” a lot of materials on the biology of perch – the most ubiquitous predator among us, including candidate dissertations, which remained accessible only to a narrow circle of ichthyologists. Fishermen, deprived of scientific information, lose a lot in the sense of acquiring skill, and especially when fishing with spinning.
Somehow on the shore, I got into a conversation with a young spinning player. It turned out that he has been fishing for perch for five years. Well-equipped, using a fairly impressive set of modern lures from branded spinners to plastic fish and wobblers, my interlocutor, however, had a very vague idea of the nuances and behavior characteristics of the perch, without knowledge of which it is impossible to achieve good results.
When is the color of the bait important?
Although the perch can see, hear, distinguish smells and possibly taste, the first two feelings, in my opinion, are most important to him.
In the fishing literature, one can often find recommendations about what colors of bait this or that fish prefers. Regarding perch, I have more than once been convinced that he is far from indifferent to color. Try experimenting with the same type of bait in different colors. The predator will choose some color. And this choice will depend both on the coloration of the feed object, to which it currently prefers, and on the degree of illumination of the water and on the depth at the place of fishing.
The auditory organ and the lateral line help out the perch in those cases when it cannot use sight, for example, in troubled waters or at dusk.
The sound signals of the fish are perceived by the auditory labyrinth. The high sensitivity of the hearing aid allows them to hear even faint sounds propagating in the water. This circumstance, of course, also needs to be considered by the spinning specialist. In the water column, sound is not only amplified, but its speed is 4.5 times greater than in air.
In turn, the fish themselves are able to make sounds in the frequency range from 20-50 Hz to 10-12 kHz. These sounds can occur during movement, nutrition, and also as a result of the operation of special sound organs (for example, the swimming bladder). By nature, it can be blows, rattle, crunching, crackling, rustling, rustling, etc. With the help of an auditory organ, a perch receives “information” that food has been found.
The sideline runs in fish along the body. This organ – a kind of locator – includes a series of holes penetrating the scales and leading to a deeper longitudinal channel, which is connected through the nerve cells to the brain. Nerve endings are sensitive to the smallest signals in the aquatic environment, sending impulses to the brain. In predatory fish, including perch, the lateral line, along with vision and hearing, plays an important role in the hunt for fish trifles.
Now let’s move on to the main thing: how does a perch in a given situation react to the bait offered by a spinning player? If the visibility in the upper water layers, where striped predators hunt and where the most intense sunlight penetrates, is about a meter vertically, then they have no problems with color vision. At a depth of more than three meters, the perch can no longer distinguish color at a considerable distance. In this case, he recognizes it only by approaching 20-40 centimeters. With a strong “bloom” or turbidity of the water, generally zero visibility is possible.
All this suggests that, with the exception of crystal clear water or the uppermost layers, the perch in most cases uses the hearing organ and the side line, perceiving noises and vibrations from the bait moving in the water column, say from spinners. Vision is connected only after the bait is in close proximity to it. But even if the predator does not see the object (for example, at twilight), the lateral line, sensitive to short waves, allows it not only to determine at what speed the potential “victim” is moving, but also to accurately select the angle for the attack.
With that said, with muddy water, I try to catch on baits with a sharp vibrating move or with a noise effect. However, as with any rule, there are exceptions. And above all, they relate to fishing on plastic fish and twisters that have a smooth surface. They work in any light conditions of the water and are often the most effective of all others. But after all, the same vibro-tail “does not make noise” during wiring. The point here, apparently, is that by the oscillations of his tail, he sends short waves to the side line of the perch. When a plastic fish freezes in place, the predator does not respond to it.
From the foregoing, I would draw the following conclusion: baits that mimic the natural appearance of a food object are effective in clean, clear water, since perch uses their eyesight to detect it. In water with poor visibility, it is more appropriate to use baits that vibrate sharply during posting, and painting them absolutely does not mean anything. As for the smooth plastic fish, the perch finds it in such conditions the faster.