Anglers have been contemplating the perfect moment and calculating how to fulfill it for a long, long time. You may have seen those calendars with the best and worst times for fishing marked on them. These handy solunar tables are all but worshipped by many fishermen. Is it science or superstition? A little of both, though possibly more of the latter.
It is true that the gravity dance of the Earth, Sun, and Moon play an important part in the feeding habits and behavior of fish. Most saltwater anglers understand this and pay attention to the tides. When the tide is active and the water is moving, then the bait is also in motion and the fish take advantage of the situation. A wise saltwater angler knows that he stands the best chance of catching something at this time. So he studies the tide tables (as well as the weather, trends, and reports) and is better prepared.
For the landlocked freshwater angler, tides are obviously not a factor. But the sun and moon still affect fishing. Bright sunny days usually result in pretty lousy action. One reason is that fish, having no eyelids, retreat from the glare and heat to seek cooler, darker shelter. Conversely, a moonlit summer night can provide astonishing fishing. But the general "rule of thumb" is that dawn and dusk are the best times to fish in fresh water. This is easy to accept since it coincides with the movement of the sun. The moon, however, follows a somewhat erratic pattern. It can rise and set at any time of the day.
So what about the solunar tables? Do they have any value? Read the following link. It makes a good case for the affirmative. Then do some experimenting yourself. Make a log of your fishing trips. (This is a good idea in any case and will make just about anyone a better fisherman.) Compare the good days and the times when the Skunk reared his ugly tail. Any relationship with success/failure and the position of the moon? Something to do when the wind is howling, the water is dirty, or the work won't let you go. This can be applicable for both freshwater and saltwater fishing.
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