Glace cherries, curried peas, Peperami – we love anglers who think outside the tackle box to come up with perfectly strange bait ideas.
We’ve got the lowdown on some of the weird and wonderful concoctions anglers use to tempt their prey. Why not give them a try?
Meat you by the riverbank
The strong spicy flavour of Peperami makes it an excellent bait for winter and spring, when plainer flavoured pellets don’t pack enough punch to attract attention.
The crew at Gofishing fish their Peperami in “small chunks hair-rigged and fished alongside a PVA bag of pellets”. They say it’s the combination of flavoursome spices, garlic and fat that attracts fish like chub, barbel and even carp.
Meat loving sea anglers also rate bacon for bait. South West Sea Fishing say that although bacon isn’t the obvious choice, smoked or unsmoked rashers make great bait for catching Bass, Mullet, Pollock and Smoothhound. Here’s how they present it:
“Concertina it up the hook until it is tightly packed”
Bacon’s strong flavour draws the fish to it, then the softness of the meat works in your favour too. When the fish bites and you strike, the hook pulls straight through the bacon giving you a great chance of hooking your catch securely.
Go Fishing reckon tinned macaroni cheese is a “devastatingly effective” bait for luring carp and tench. Bites are near unmissable because the hook pulls straight through the soft pasta.
According to the Go fishing guys, the best way to bait your hook with macaroni is to:
“ Pass a large, round bend pattern straight through the inner, following the curve of the bait”.
As macaroni is so soft it can’t be cast, only lending itself to close range work using a pole rig.
The humble potato was once a popular carp bait, but fell out of fashion as more commercial products became available. Now is the time to rediscover spuds.
The King’s Lynn Angling Association‘s, Martin Chandler adapts a technique used by angling champion Bob Nudd: raw potatoes punched into 6 mm discs and dyed with coffee or gravy.
For the summer months, Martin soaks raw potato discs in molasses and warm water. He says: “The molasses dyes the bait and gives it a sickly sweet flavour fish just love.”
Fishing in UK recommend that you make the potatoes softer by parboiling before cutting to pellet size and soaking in gravy or coffee.
Carp are suckers for strong flavours and veg baits make perfect carriers for added spices. Ian Gemson from Smartcarping recommends fishing with “curried baked beans using Fox armour mesh to keep the bait on the hair”. He says curried peas will do the job too.
Love it or hate it
You either love it or hate it, but fish love yeast extracts like Marmite. The naturally high vitamin content of the paste has a very strong smell, which is instantly attractive. Tim Richardson from Fish South West says it sends a message to the fish that there’s “soluble nutrition” leaking from your bait.
For a dynamite bait combination that’ll really get the fish biting, Tim mixes Marmite into a paste with flour, Parmesan cheese, garlic granules, curry spices, sea salt, eggs and liquid amino acids.
Angler’s Mail writer Colin Davidson smears Marmite on small chunks of white bread or dips dog biscuits or pellets in it to make them sticky and yeasty.
With Marmite, less is more. Colin reckons if you use too much of it on your pellets, you’ll turn a floater into a sinker, so use it sparingly.
Turn to jelly
Ever wondered whether fish have a sweet tooth or not? Fred Davis at Talk Angling reckons they do. On the lookout for a hookable soft pellet recipe that was inexpensive to prepare, he hit on powdered gelatine mixed with molasses.
Simply mix half a sachet of the gelatine into a 1/4 pint of water and add molasses or Activ-8. Allow the mixture to stand, then pour it over pellets, leaving them soak up the solution.
Angler’s Mail offer a similar idea to Fred’s, swapping the powdered gelatine for good old Rowntree’s Fruit Jelly.
Hook, line and sweetener!
From aniseed balls to pink shrimps, the sweet shop is your oyster. Mike Samways from catch-app recommends jelly babies, marshmallows or bubblegum balls for luring carp. But any sugary ingredient you have in your kitchen cupboard is worth a go – glace cherries are always a good bet.
Smartcarping’s Ian Gemson is also a fan of the sweet approach saying that that tic-tacs and even strawberry laces make great bait for chub and carp.
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