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Big Fish, Big Fun on the Rio Uneuxi

In mid November 2004, we had booked a week of Peacock Bass fishing on the Unini River ----- however just prior to our planned arrival our host booking agent, Garrett Veneklasen made an advance trip to the river only to discover that the river was "too high" for optimum fishing. He, along with outfitter Luis Brown, quickly made other options as to alternate river locations. Among the offers was to divert to a river named the Uneuxi, so, Stanley Schofield, of Portland, Maine, my fishing partner for the week and I chose, upon Garrett's recommendation, to give the Uneuxi a try.
  Garrett had cautioned us that it was past "prime time" on this river since the spawn was most likely over and the fish would not be as active. The river has a good reputation for large fish, but not for big numbers. With that understanding we gave it a try.

We fished with Brazilian guide Sebastian, whom I've know for several years, a guide as it turns out whose intuitions, along with keen eye site, guided us to an unbelievable week of fishing.


As a rule we have found that fishing the river banks, along sunken trees, rocks and other structure from which Peacocks can "ambush" their pray pay off the best, as well as certain deep holes adjacent to structure. For the shallow water along the banks, sandbars and lagoons top water lures i.e. big wood choppers, high rollers and top dogs, have always seemed to work best, while jigs and deeper running lures do well in the "holes". Well, this year on the Uneuxi River these conventional "tried and proven" plans of attack just wasn't working. Strikes along the banks were few and far apart, sandbars and other structure were equally quiet --- even "holes" where jigs normally pay off big time seemed to be almost fishless.

It was at this point that Stanley, Sebastian and I decided we must do something different. We decided to cruise the river looking for working fish. Finally Sebastian saw tiny bubbles appearing out in the middle of the river --- not a normal place to look for Peacocks!

Sebastian explained that those bubbles might be Peacock Fry (new hatch Peacock babies) which Sebastian called "Bambinos". He said that both the male and female (mom & dad) would typically put the school of the tiny, bubble making babies close to the surface and they would swim under them protecting the school of babies from would be predator fish. So the trick would be to throw a "predator looking" lure to the front of the school making the lure look like it was on an attack mission. The "mom and dad" would then attack the predator lure to protect their offspring. We gave it a try and boy did it work!!! It not only got the dad on the first cast but the mom on the second cast. It was incredible!! Cast to the bubbles, and be ready. The response is immediate and vicious!!
So, for the rest of our trip we slowly cruised the center of the rivers (that's where the mom and dad Peacocks take their off-spring to protect them) and looked for tiny bubbles.

The results were amazing. In the next few days we caught 27 fish over 20 pounds and many of these fish were 24, 25 and 26 pounds. Bear in mind that these fish had spawned and were at their lightest. I'm not sure what these fish might have weighed only a couple of weeks before spawning. At any rate I have enclosed a few pictures for your edification of what happens when you cast to "Bambinos" which are being convoyed by protective Peacock parents.

Archie Adams .

Stanley Displays one of his trophies from Brazil

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