by Bob Mehsikomer The Yanna, your home base Simply Fishing in Brazil Extreme Brazil Peacock The Peacock Bass, which by the way isn’t a bass at all, is without question one of the hardest fighting freshwater fish alive. From the word go, fishing peacocks will be an experience. It will more than likely take you first to your local retailer, long before you make your first cast. Fishing these fish successfully simply requires heavier equipment than any bass fisherman would normally carry. The lures of choice for these giants would alone be too much for even the heaviest of bass gear, and it doesn’t stop there. Picture yourself pulling a twenty pound smallmouth out from beneath your favorite fishing pier. Well, you can expect ten times that when you hook one of these awesome monsters within the complex root system of any one of a billion trees lining the banks of the remote Amazon drainage. In short, if done properly, it will be an experience of a lifetime.
The Amazon basin is the only destination for monster peacocks. Based on my previous experiences, you will want to set your sites on the Rio Negro region. The Rio Negro is the largest of the more than 1,000 tributaries feeding the Amazon within a basin encompassing more than 292,000 square miles. Tributaries feeding the Rio Negro include the Rio Apuau, Rio Jauperi, Rio Branco, Rio Jufari, Rio Demi, Rio Araca, Rio Paduari and Rio Cuiuni, just to name a few. And they all hold monster peacocks. The Rio Negro and the Amazon alike undergo a very dramatic change from their summer season into their winter. It is common for the average depth of the system to rise and fall more than forty-five feet between these two periods. The trick is to be there when the fishing is best, and trust me when I say there are better times. Picture if you will the forest outside your back door or along any of our nation’s highways. Notice the towering trunk systems of our common oaks, for instance, then add a typical amount of undergrowth and you can quickly visualize what to expect when the water levels are low. Now, add forty feet of water to the previous example and you get an entirely different picture. The key is to be there before the waters rise too high, allowing the monster peacocks to make their way beneath the flooded canopy and generally out of reach. The question is, when is the low water period? How does one predict this opportune period? Those are the issues I will address as we move forward, keeping in mind the fact that nature does what she wants, when she wants. Therefore, my observations, however rooted in fact, are just that, observations. I have fished peacocks during the months of January and December. January was fairly productive, but not nearly as productive as December. December is the middle of the Amazon summer and therefore exhibits the lowest water levels, with January being only slightly higher. I’m telling you this because there are two distinct reasons to choose one period over the other. During December, low water tends to prevent the fish from moving into the jungle, and almost forces them to run the hard banks to feed. However, that is only a part of the picture. The peacocks also take advantage of the pools within the rivers and lagoons themselves. Little is really known about the daily habits and movements of the peacock at this point. However, it is common to find them around current areas or back eddies in the rivers, around rock piles just as you would any largemouth or smallmouth bass, or suspended in the center of a quiet lagoon or oxbow. World Class Peacocks seen here