Recently, I learned that October 20th is National Bridge Day. Fortunately, this is recognition of the potential fish structure and not the dull couple’s card game. A bridge is not just a means to get to a fishing location; if it spans water, a bridge may actually BE the destination.
Keith Sutton, author of The Crappie Handbook, notes that bridges make great crappie structures, especially the concrete piers when the water is cool. “The piers warm up on sunny days, and crappies are attracted to this warmth.”
Captain Clay Eavenson of www.b3fishing.com frequents bridges near Tampa, Florida. “Our bridges act very much like giant artificial reefs. They attract huge amounts of baitfish which in turn attract the game fish.”
When pressed for what kinds of saltwater fish, Capt. Clay shared that species such as tarpon and Spanish mackerel may migrate near during warmer months but, “gag grouper, mangrove snapper, and several species of shark hang around pretty much year round.”
Any bridge that has part of the structure in the water not only serves as substrate for microorganisms and cover for small fish, but often provides water access for the angler both for fishing a deep channel and/or landing fish. Be sure to check for any bridge rules and regulations. And please be courteous and share the bridges as anglers, pedestrians, and boaters may be in close quarters.
When it comes to fishing a bridge, deal me in.
Andy Whitcomb is a columnist, outdoor humorist, and stressed-out Dad living in Oklahoma. Visit him at www.justkeepreeling.com.