Nature’s schedule ensures postspawn bass have plenty of readily available food source for their important transitional phase prior to their summer migrations. High on that list is the late-spring shad spawn of May and June when thousands of baitfish converge on docks, sea walls, riprap and even grass edges.

Opportunistic bass, especially recuperating females, will take advantage of this massing to fill their bellies with distracted prey. Typically an early morning deal, shad spawns rarely last beyond about 9 a.m., unless overcast skies mute the intensifying sunlight.

Given the frantic nature of a shad spawn, anglers fare best with fast-moving presentations like spinnerbaits, swim jigs and buzzbaits. One of the favorites is a shallow running crankbait like the Norman Mad N. Burn the bait past likely areas and don’t hesitate to bump hard surfaces to trigger reaction bites.

While shad spawns are most commonly found around those shoreline structures, keep watch for occasional offshore opportunities, as well. Some of the shad may gather over humps, ridges and various hard spots as much as a half mile off the bank. The fish will congregate around fairly focused areas, but that’s subject to change, based on how hard the bass are working them on a given morning.

Watch for baitfish flipping, bass busting the surface and birds hovering and diving. Good thing is, the same baits that work on the shoreline will also tempt bass chasing offshore shad spawns.