After last year’s experiences with the Table Rock Lake Monster (http://mybasslife.com/?p=459), I figured this season would be pretty safe on the water. After all, Table Rock isn’t on the schedule, so how dangerous could the other lakes be? Little did I know that Toho would have a smaller, yet infinitely more hazardous creature lurking there.
The hazards at Toho weren’t as large or even as aggressive as the geese as Table Rock, but they made up for it in sheer numbers and with a seemingly never ending supply of ammunition. Hiding among the Kissimmee grass and lily pads, these feathered Kamikaze wait for an unsuspecting fisherman to come running by at 70+ mph and then leap into you path. It has to be on purpose. The ones on the left seem to always go right and the ones on the right always take off to the left.
They always seem to wait too late to take off, causing the drivers with slow reactions to get way too close and sometimes even ending up bouncing off the trolling motor or bow of the boat. Those that take to the air often appear to either be extremely frightened or attempting to lighten the load in a vane attempt to gain altitude. The lucky ones who get high enough will try to line you up for a bombing run. With amazing accuracy, they manage to cover a great deal of the boat with their nasty little bombs. Defying the laws of physics as I understand them, one even managed to somehow poop on the back of one of my legs during one particularly good strafing run.
Technically know as Fulica Americana, these feathered balls of poop are more commonly know as Coots. After a week of dodging them along the grass lines and canals of Toho, I’m convinced that they either have a death wish or an extraordinarily bad sense of hearing and sight. How else they could avoid seeing or hearing a 21 foot, brightly color bass boat running a full throttle is a mystery to me. I even had one fly into the side of the boat and I heard of one that ended up lodged between someone’s depth finder and the front deck of the boat. Both of these survived their boat encounters so I’m sure they’re still out there waiting to attack some other unsuspecting bass fisherman.
All I can say for certain is that thanks to me (and I’m sure others), the population on Toho is slightly smaller than it was before the BASS Open last week. I’m also certain that they get plenty of fiber in their diet. I’ll be spending some extra clean up time on the Phoenix carpet this week.
Thanks to the sponsors who make this all possible: Lowrance Electronics, Phoenix Bass Boats, Denali Rods, Bryan’s Marine, BoatUS Angler, Power Pole, Costa del Mar Sunglasses and Mississippi Van Lines. Without all of you, none of this would be possible.