Fishing & Boating

Fishing with Artificial Bait

Fishing with Artificial Bait
     Fishing with artificial bait is like making a movie. The bait is the actor, and the angler is the director who makes the actor work to captivate the audience. The process must be as natural as possible. Anglers should watch the bait in the water around them and then mimic their movement. Below are some tips for fishing with different types of artificial bait.
Artificial Shrimp

       The most common mistake anglers make when working an artificial shrimp is working it way too fast. The most natural way to work a shrimp is to cast it up tide and let it drift down tide while naturally twitching slightly every few seconds.

Jerk Bait
       Using this bait is a great way to cover ground and find fish. However, the huge downfall to using this bait is that most people do not know what size jig head to use so they typically tend to use too large of a lead. 1/16oz and 1/8oz are all you need when working flats. If you are skipping docks or working passes, then use 1/4oz to 3/8oz. This bait should be worked slowly across the bottom while twitching the rod with the tip down. Many people make the mistake of holding their rod tip in the air while working jerk baits. Doing this will make the bait arch on the retrieve resulting in an unnatural movement that won’t attract fish.

Crab Imitations
       Crab imitations can be worked three different ways. One way is to use a weighted weedless hook and slowly bounce it along the bottom. Another way is to use a weedless worm hook, cast up tide, and then twitch as it drifts down with the tide. A final great way to use the crab is to drop shot it like you were bass fishing. Suspend the crab just above grass and keep the weight on the bottom.

Mullet Swimbait
       This is a very underestimated bait. With today’s technology, these soft plastics look as real as bait gets. Rig these with a weighted weedless hook and swim them across the flats covering ground and finding fish. They are great to throw as the tide is dropping and the fish are falling off the shallow flats and in to potholes and channels.

       One final tip for using any artificial bait is to make sure you choose the right color. In the spring and summer months there is an abundance of white bait, but in the winter, they are absent. In the winter, there are loads of shrimp and other crustaceans. So, it is important to remember to use lighter colors in the summer months and darker colors in the winter.