Mudminnow Report

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UpperMi roughangler
UpperMi roughangler's picture
Mudminnow Report

While waiting to be able to fish for larger species, I decided to fish for the species I could see. I always wanted to catch a Central Mudminnow and a Brook Stickleback ever since I first discovered they were extremely common in my local creek. I've tried a few times before and had alot of Sticklebacks bite but didn't have small enough hooks.


This year, I was anxiously looking for suckers in the creek and didn't see any, so I then tried to see if I could spy some Stickleback or Mudminnow. I spotted some Stickleback and I tried catching them with my new ultralight combo and tiny fly hook (not sure what size but I didn't want to buy special micro hooks and wait days/weeks? for them to arrive) with little piece of garden worm. It was impossible for me to sneak up on them without them spooking, so I just put my line on top of them (most had already been scared downstream) and could tell that my hook was still much to large to catch one. I thought to myself that the only fish I could possibly catch with this hook anytime soon out of this creek was one of the large Central Mudminnow that are so common yet so evasive around here.


I had put a minnow trap in the creek, as I do every year, a  few days ago and I always catch Mudminnow and Stickleback this way. I found the trap to have 6 Stickleback and 2 Mudminnow. Then, I spooked a few Mudminnow as I waded downstream in my boots. I was mad because these were sizable fish and I knew I could have caughten one  with that hook.


Today, I checked my trap to find alot of Mudminnow, 2 Stickleback, and a White Sucker (I was glad to see one because I had not seen a wild one since last fall) around 5 inches long. Then, I searched for Stickles and Mudminnow with little success. I was just going to go home like I was planning, but something told me I had to go downstream, on the other side of two culverts/roads (not as far as it sounds, you could run there in under a minute if there were no trees and other creek obstructions) to where all the big fish usually spawn.


I jumped down off the bank and waded to the spot where I had actually gotten nibbles from small fish earlier. This is a hole about 5 feet long 4 feet wide and 3-4 feet deep with dark water off the main flow so the water is still like a pond. Half of this still had snow over it  so it created a cave for fish to hide.


So I didn't scare the fish, I knelt down back far enough that I could still have the rod tip above the bait. Almost as soon as the line was in the water,  Stickleback started hammering it. But they were too small to hook. I needed something just a little bigger. I checked the worm piece to see if it was still secure on the hokk, then dropped the ling back in. I jiggled it up and down with little taps on the rod in an area were I could see it good. Then, I moved it into the blacker water and had Stickleback around it  when I saw a large Mudminnow, which must have been hiding in the mud under the bank, dart out to where I was jigging the worm piece. I moved the rod tip slowly back over that spot and the fish lunged at it. I didn't want to set the hook to hard so I just sharply lifted the rod and a nice mudminnow was flipping around on my hook! I then swung it towards me and it wriggled free of the hook and almost got back in the water had I not quickly grabbed it. I was so exited to have finally caughten this well-known finned friend of mine on a hook and line!    


Sorry for that being extremely long.

Hopefully the suckers will be in soon so I can catch some larger fish. 

I will have pictures soon.


Carp Chaser
Carp Chaser's picture
Nice catch! It's a good feeli

Nice catch! It's a good feeling when you put some time in on a fish, patiently observing them in the water... then suddenly have one on your hook flipping around. The really small hooks work wonders on fish like sticklebacks, worth getting.

Life, liberty and the pursuit of life listers

UpperMi roughangler
UpperMi roughangler's picture

I made a gallery with pics of the Mudminnow if anyone would like to look.

drawer.bli's picture
Those are cool fish! If you w

Those are cool fish! If you want small enough hooks for the stickleback, I recommend tanago hooks from tenkarabum. The service is nice, I got mine in two days with a free sample of fly tying yarn.