Fishing Bait Alternatives
There are people around hooked on fishing. It’s a pastime that brings pleasure to millions, from pond dipping for minnows with the kids to reeling in ocean giants like barracuda. There are always plenty of good reasons to down tools, shut up shop and go fishing – a few hours’ solitude on the riverbank perhaps or deep-water excitement with equally fish minded friends. Everyone has their favorite spots, favorite fish, favorite rods and everyone has theories about bait. Some recipes could be no more than a lucky fisherman’s tale but even so, here are some easy to prepare bait alternatives it could be worth giving a go.
Are There Fishing Bait Alternatives To Try?
Most non-fishing people think all you need to catch a fish is a hook and a worm. Worms are okay since there are fish who will go for anything that will fit in their mouth even soap. But if you are looking for a way to increase your catch rate it might be worth checking bait alternatives out.
Just as some fish species are stimulated and react to certain lures or flies, some types of bait work better than others. Changing bait can be beneficial if you are finding most of your catch is a single species. It’s a sign they are crowding the area. Switching to an alternative may encourage them to move on. The curious and hungry that were kept at a distance are then free to move onto the bait.
Try Bits Of Smelly Foods
Like the guys using soap, you can get good results using what you have around the house. Bits of corn, chicken scraps and fat, bread, raw bacon or even hot dog which is especially great for catching catfish. The idea is to get the scent traveling downstream to draw the fish in so the smellier and more rancid the better.
Try Cereal Flakes
Crush some cereal flakes and add enough water to mix and form bait pellets. Some fishermen say that for even better results you should use red soda.
Go For Grasshoppers
One easily available fishing bait alternative is grasshoppers. You could try catching some yourself or get them at your bait shop. Freshwater fish bream are particularly partial. Attach it to the hook through its back and suspend it down a foot or so. Give a twitch now and then to get interest.
Make Use Of Pet Food
Dry cat or dog food pellets seem an odd choice but both are made uses rancid fats. When fishing in freshwater they produce a slick trail without disintegrating. Cat kibbles are especially tempting, perhaps because of the strong scents given off by the fish oils. Because the kibbles are small, they are easily taken by smaller fish although salmon and trout also like them.
Easily available in any supermarket, digestive biscuits work quite well. Just mix cheap crumbled digestives with bits of chicken liver or chopped bacon rind and old animal fat or anything similarly oil based and smelly by adding a little hot water. Aim for adding enough to make bait balls that hold their consistency when the fat sets so they can be molded like putty around the hook.
Use Bird Seed Balls
Both salt and freshwater fish love birdseed balls. Thes bait balls are fun to make from two slices of bread covered in peanut butter. Sprinkle over generously with birdseed and squish about to mix nicely. Then roll into balls to use in place of your traditional bait.
Go With Turkey Livers
Chicken liver is a popular bait choice for new catfish anglers, but chicken based bait may not always work and there the hassle of preparing it. Many anglers believe they catch more with turkey livers. Okay, you still have the hassle but unlike with chicken, using turkey livers could make worth it.
Stick With Crawfish
If you’re looking for one of the best bait alternatives, there’s crawfish. Bait with it for species such as catfish, walleye, bass or even large trout. If you’re using dead crawfish, they work better with the heads pinched off. This releases the crawfish juices to add to the scent trail. Hook in right under its tail and impale as much as you can. If you’re using live crawfish, hook through the base of the tail.
Opt For Artificial Bait
Other than trying the bait alternatives, you can up your focus and your catch using lures. There’s a huge variety of jigs, spoons and tiny spinners and many small, lifelike lures made of plastic. Try them on sight hunters like bass or bream who react to movement. Many come cheap enough for you to begin to experiment.
Accessories And Gear To Make Fishing Easier
Of course, any fisherman worth his salt knows you need quality bait to catch fish but what you have in your tackle box matters too. In case you are a fishing novice or tempted to try new waters, here is some fishing gear to help your fishing trip be more successful.
Never leave to fish without fishing pliers. From cutting lines and removing hooks to flattening barbs and tightening knots, pliers are an essential piece of kit. There have been many occasions where having pliers handy has saved a life. Considering how much you are going to rely on them, take your time choosing and be prepared to invest. Especially check they are corrosion-resistant and rust proof and for durability opt for stainless steel, aluminum or even titanium. A good pair will last you many years.
An underwater LED light is a must-have for night fishing. The light attracts all sorts of marine life especially small fry, who in turn, attract bigger fish in. Even if you’re not planning to spend a night out, it is a good idea to have a fishing lights in your fishing backpack as part of your emergency kit.
As tempting as it is to get everything you might possibly need, most people manage perfectly well without expensive thigh waders. What you will need though, are sturdy fishing shoes or boots that offer good grip and ankle support so you can dig in to keep yourself on the uneven bank if you need to reel a big fish in.
Saltwater Fishing Rods
Even if you are just starting out fishing, you’ll know there’s no such thing as a one size fits all although there are all purpose rods and poles that can be adapted. There are many kinds of fishing poles from spinning, casting and fly fishing rods to those built for heavy duty and the extremes of saltwater fishing. Each type of rod comes in many models, brands, lengths and weights. The best for you depends on what you are intending to catch, its size and sometimes, even its location. Regardless of whether you are looking for a high spec surf rod or simple cane pole, it needs to be comfortable and easy to handle.
If you are an old salt and know your kippers from your herring, you probably have your own secret ways with bait and know what makes a good rod. To the uninitiated though, getting kitted out can feel like swimming upstream. There’s so much equipment choice and so much advice. But then, fishing is a pastime that offers a near endless variety of ways to outwit fish. It may come down to giving these simple alternatives a go to find out what excites the fish in your favorite fishing hole.