Random Sonar Shots - Please post your own

Discussion in 'Chesapeake Bay' started by Shawn Kimbro, Jan 3, 2014.

  1. Shawn Kimbro

    Shawn Kimbro TechFish Pro Supporting Hooked Up!

    I thought it might be interesting to see a thread with some sonar shots with explanations and/or questions. I'll start with a few and hope others will join in with interesting shots or some they have questions about.


    The above is a shot of fish holding very tight to the bottom along a ledge. I think this was near Swan Point in the late summer. When stripers aren't actively feeding, they sometimes just hunker down side by side along the bottom. If you get a jig to them just right, you can still get reaction strikes.


    This is stripers actively feeding on a bait school. I count six. In this case the bait was small, less than an inch long. Stripers were mid-20s. A shot like this tells me I should probably size down my lure.


    Above is a school of stripers attacking a pod of glass minnows. I could've dialed down the sensitivity on this one a little for better detail. Note the difference in the color of the soft bottom in this shot compared to the ones of the hard bottoms above it.


    A few striped bass near the bottom. The solid line is a lure making bottom contact.


    The proverbial "False Bottom." When fish are this thick sometimes the sonar will misinterpret the depth and report the top of the school as the bottom.


    I've posted this one before and it's one of my favorites. Fish are relating to bottom structure, in this case, the Kent Island Sewer Pipe. From this shot you can tell the direction of the current. It's flowing from left to right. The fish are moving in over and in front of the structure to eat the bait that is trapped against the rocks.

    I'll look for more and post other shots when I get them. Hope to see some of yours.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2014
  2. boondoggle

    boondoggle Contributing Angler Supporting TechFish!


    Suspended fish I was running a silicon fly through

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  3. DirtyFrank

    DirtyFrank Angler

    100_0772 (2).jpg

    Overs, big overs. They were chasing big bunker, very aggressive fish.




    so now with the HDS I got a few years back. structure scan shows bait, primarily off to my right. when I see this and I can actually make out fish in the bait school, I tend to think it's bigger, like adult bunker, not anchovies or minnows. The green box I initially though was better fish below but I've since learned that good fish will show on the down scan, the green box is therefore probably perch or something smaller.


    mostly dinks, a few over 20 in this group.

    I'm interested to know for those that have structure scan, do you do the down scan overlay on top of the traditional sonar?
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  4. Frank Bonanno

    Frank Bonanno Contributing Angler Supporting TechFish!

    Great photos. I plan on taking a lot of these this summer. Wish I had captured some from the past. This is very helpful to see what people see when you are catching.
  5. Shawn Kimbro

    Shawn Kimbro TechFish Pro Supporting Hooked Up!

    Cool stuff!

    I don't overlay, Frank. I'm more inclined to run a split screen. Here's another shot of the KI Sewer Pipe including downscan and structurescan. Much fewer fish in this one.

  6. Bustem Baits

    Bustem Baits Angler

    Here is a shot of the Bay Bridge this time last year.

    Bay Bridge.jpg
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  7. TechnicalFisher

    TechnicalFisher TechFish Staff Staff Member

    Another great thread- I can look at sonar shots all day long. I'll have to dig around for some more but here are a few from mine. HDS-12 Gen1 running at 200khz through an Airmar B60 thru-hull. I've gradually dropped my gain more and more over the years and run it now typically on auto minus 9 or so. I also went from using the blue background to using the white. Here are a few shots with descriptions:

    This first one is from last year of the same sort of mid-winter bite that folks are getting into now at LTU. Its tough to read, but depth is about 55ft and as you can see the fish are all pretty tight to the bottom. These rockfish ranged from 20" to 26" or so.

    Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 1.36.55 PM.png

    #2 is from a wide-open mid-summer bite in 2012 north of Kent Island. We had a really nice class of fish to the low 30" class that was actively feeding on what I believe were bay anchovies over a hard bottom in 25' of water. You can see the bait mixed in with the fish, as well as the fish movement very nicely here.

    photo copy 3.JPG

    #3 is early May, 2012 down in Eastern Bay. I'm right at the beginning of a steep drop from 12' to 35' and the fish were sitting in the deeper water just off the edge. These were good fish in the 28"-32" range and were feeding actively.

    photo copy 2.JPG

    This last one is from late May, 2013 north of Kent Island. These fish were in the 20"-24" range and stacked up like cord wood over hard bottom in 25' of water.

  8. TechnicalFisher

    TechnicalFisher TechFish Staff Staff Member

    Great shots, @DirtyFrank. I don't overlay but typically run sounder on one unit, often with chart and structure scan on the other unit split between downscan and sidescan.
  9. TechnicalFisher

    TechnicalFisher TechFish Staff Staff Member

    I remember that day well @Shawn Kimbro. We were up fishing next to you and had to split quickly because we'd conned our wives into thinking we were going for a pleasure cruise. I didn't feel too bad about leaving because I didn't see anything of much interest on the sounder.

    Boy was I wrong- those fish you pulled that day were big fish. After seeing your posts about those returns on CLT you changed the way I looked at bottom returns for good.
  10. J.A. Veil

    J.A. Veil Angler

    Here are screen shots from 4 locations at different times of the year. The first two examples are from a Lowrance LMS-527 unit. The last two are from a Lowrance HDS-5 Gen 2 unit.

    1. Dropoff to eastern side channel edge a few miles south of the Bay Bridge -- June 2012. These proved to be small rockfish. This was an ultra-false bottom situation.



    2. Severn River debris pile - December 2012. The sonar shows the jigging action of the BKD. After a few minutes I caught a fat 26" rockfish from my kayak.




    3. Open water location off the mouth of the Severn. June 2013. This produced dozens of stripers including a few 18 to 21" fish each trip over a period of several months.


    4. Drifting near the Bay Bridge - October 2013. Lots of bluefish to 15" and rockfish to 23" were stacked up -- some near structure, some in open water. This location was productive for several weeks in a row.




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  11. 5th Tuition

    5th Tuition Angler

    I'm enjoying this thread and love the screen shots. However, these two photos show the most important HDS photos of 2013 on my boat. The first shows where the unit WAS, before being stolen (six boats at my marina had their electronics lifted); the second shows the unit back home where it belongs after NRP caught the thief and regained my unit:)


    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 3, 2014
  12. Salmo

    Salmo Angler

    Very nice. I've always used absolute junk electronics until recently. The pictures we need more of are the ones that are not that obvious like Shawn's shot of fish hugging the bottom. I could have missed those. What about the shot below it with the 6 fish feeding on the school? Are there fish hugging the bottom there too? As for the sensitivity, did you turn it to a negative number or did the machine do that on "auto"?
  13. ES Fisherman

    ES Fisherman Angler

    First picture is from eastern bay last June, possibly the same spot seaside was fishing. These 25-35+" fish were very aggressive and were feeding on white perch. The spike at the bottom left of the screen was from a "false bottom" reading.


    This picture is a mixed school of rock ranging from dink to 25" feeding on anchovies. I've never seen the screen as full as it was that day in July.


    The last one is sea trout (caught 2 dink trout and lost a 16-18" by the boat) and small rock on the bottom in eastern bay later in the summer. These fish were not aggressive, just laying there, and took a lot of convincing to eat a jig. I think the marks above the bottom are scattered baitfish and there were birds sitting on the water, we had probably just missed the bite.

    Jesse Rossmann likes this.
  14. done workin

    done workin Angler

    This really is a good thread.

    I applaud Shawn for the shot of the bottom hugging fish. I think I had always thought this was just a different bottom composition and had always looked for something more like the traditional arch laying on the bottom.

    Who knows how many fish I may have passed over.

    Very valuable info!!!!!!

    Jesse Rossmann likes this.
  15. skip

    skip Angler

    Here's some White Perch off Tilghman Island in 20 feet - we don't need no fancy electronics.

  16. jumbo1

    jumbo1 Angler

    Parker 23.jpg Fishfinder pic..
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  17. 5th Tuition

    5th Tuition Angler

    Damn Jamie, I thought you would have posted a photo of a BIRD:)

    I don't suppose you have room in that garage for my Judge, do you?
    5th (Marty)
  18. rrpat06

    rrpat06 Angler


    Riding around all day with stuff like this under the boat, my wife kept asking me - "what is that?". "Bait" is my standard reply. She had the nerve to accuse me of not being able to read my fish finder! So what are those blobs hanging out around 50 feet anyway? Bait? If so, I sure find a lot of bait.
  19. jumbo1

    jumbo1 Angler

    20131226_153019.jpg Ok marty here's another "fishfinder" pic
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  20. Chris C

    Chris C Angler

    Near the "Rock Pile", late summer.

    Attached Files:

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