In my opinion, the bait is the basis of angling. Over time, it has evolved from the bait procured from nature (frames, worms), from the simple loaf of bread or the grain of corn picked directly from the cobs to the most complex boilies that can reach fabulous prices.
The variety of bait that is now in the fisherman’s arsenal helps him fool the fish, which is becoming more cautious, more versatile, and smarter. It is said that a bait once inspected by a fish and refused will never be of interest to that fish. Other opinions that belong to foreign elite fishermen say that fish have the opportunity to communicate with each other and to train in feeding or to avoid together a potentially dangerous food. It is practically a feature of any living thing to learn and adapt in order to survive.
I will review the main categories of baits, both hook and bait, and the most used in each category. Natural food: live natural food: frames, worms, dragonfly larvae, insects, used especially in the cold season. Natural food that is not alive, possibly processed: seeds (hemp, flax, rapeseed, beans, corn, wheat, hazelnuts, and many others) processed, boiled, soaked, fermented, flavored, etc. Probably the best-known bait and the most used for both hook and bait is corn.
The advantages of the seeds would be the following:
They cannot be used in very large quantities. If used raw, it saturates the fish very quickly. It takes up a lot of space, they have a bad smell when fermenting, most of which are more trapping after being left to ferment (except for hemp, which is forbidden to use if it changes its smell). I can only make a selection of fish species or large carp specimens to a lesser extent. They have a lower yield at long games and competitions. They do not bring too much nutritional intake to the fish.
Somewhere on the border between natural and artificial food would be polenta and ground baits. If the first one doesn’t need any presentation, being a well-established bait that has kept its efficiency in time, I will insist more on the ground baits. The name varies, being found under various variants, all being practically the same thing: a mixture of flours, over which you can add water or attractive liquids to form in the form of lumps, free or on bait, without requiring boiling. Their composition can be extremely complex: more or less fine cereal flours, broken cereals or whole grains, fish meal, meat or shell, milk powder or components thereof, dyes, flavors, attractants. They can contain practically anything. They can be used for bait as such in the form of lumps or on a swimmer or they can be used as a means to train with the other baits (pellets, boilies, seeds.
The variety of ground bags on the market is overwhelming, they are also used in other styles and each one can bring new advantages. There is a vast literature related only to these. Some say that it must be the color of the substrate, others that on the contrary, it must be in contrast with the substrate. It is a complex bait despite its simplicity, which can be talked about for a lifetime.
In the end, my most complex and artificial “artificial” bait are mainly represented by pellets and boilies, but also others (plastics, etc.).
The term artificial bait is inappropriate for pellets and boilies as they mostly contain natural components, which have only been processed by man. It is probably the most discussed topic, each forum having an entire section dedicated only to boilies. For this reason, I will try to make only a presentation dedicated to the beginner fisherman.
What is bait and bait in carp fishing?
Terms bait, Nadir, and carp fishing are often inseparable. Fishing for carp and other cyprinid species is based in most cases on placing the bait in the water through the bait operation.
The bait was designed to attract as many fish as possible to the area where we fish. Since ancient times, tribes and other ancient peoples have resorted to bait to catch fish by various methods.
Therefore, it was impossible for the bait not to be caught in fishing with a fishing rod and rod. Decades ago, fishermen borrowed this habit, turning it into a complex process over time.
After all, what is swimming?
Baiting is, in short, the introduction into the water of a quantity of bait aimed at gathering as many fish as possible near the place where we place the hook with the bait.
The bait specific to carp fishing can be of animal origin (worms, earthworms, larvae), cereals (ground bait, cereals, boilies, pellets, bakery products, etc.), or mixed with ingredients from both categories (ground bait, boilies, pellets).
At first, the bait was thrown into the water by the simplest method – by hand. Over the years, fishing itself has evolved, with bait fishing methods multiplying considerably.
From simple hand swimming, impressive performance has been achieved, with fishermen now having the opportunity to place the bait tens, or hundreds of meters away.
In the following, I will describe in detail the types of bait and modern methods of bait used in carp fishing, the necessary bait equipment, various techniques, and strategies, how we can use the bait to our advantage, but also many other interesting tips content.
1. Types of baits
Bait in carp fishing can be done using a wide range of baits, determined by the type of fishing we want to fish and the fish we want to catch.
The 4 most common categories of bait used in carp fishing are:
- ground bait
- boilies sites
These types of bait can be combined or fished separately, depending on the situation.
How we should use these baits, what are the basic principles, how the baits work, but also the answer to other essential questions will be outlined in the content of this chapter.
1.1. ground baits
Called baits, or mixes, are pastures made from various ingredients that have the role of being fished mainly on the water substrate.
Ground bait, like the other 3 major categories of baits, is available in a multitude of flavors, colors, and grains. The choice of ground baits differs depending on the preferences of each fisherman, which is based on certain criteria and personal experiences.
Ground bait swimming can be done singly, or together with other types of bait and liquids.
The most famous form of ground bait is swimming in the lump. Bulgarians can be released into the water by various methods, described above. The diameter of the lumps can vary between 30-70 mm, depending on the method used.
In the composition of the lumps of bait, we can add other kinds of bait or we can use the ground bait as such. Regardless of the situation, we must always aim to achieve the correct consistency of the lumps. How do we get this consistency? Carefully, following a few simple rules!
Bait lumps can be of several types depending on the consistency. Thus, there are lumps that immediately fall apart on impact with the water, lumps that loosen on the substrate after a short time, and lumps that have a slightly longer release time.
Bubble lumps that break on contact with water are attractive. The bait is dispersed in the water column in order to arouse the interest of as many fish as possible, regardless of the species. The agitation generated will sooner or later attract the carp and guide them to the bait bed made on the substrate. This type of lumps is obtained by a weak wetting of the ground bait, being recommended only by the use of water, without other sticky liquids.
Bait lumps that fall off immediately after reaching the substrate are meant to form the bait bed and provide a constant feed for the fish. In order for the lumps to resist contact with water, consistent wetting is necessary and the use of fine-grained liquids or powders that will bind the lumps (sweet corn syrup, additives, etc.). such as whole or broken seeds, pellets, or boilies.
Hard bait lumps, which will last longer on the bottom of the water, are dedicated to the moments when we want to drive small fish off the bait bed. Strong Bulgarians will only cause problems for small fish, not for carp that will be happy to stir them until they break. The well-bound consistency of these lumps results from the excessive use of sticky liquids and powders.
Ground baits can also be used for snowshoeing or bucket swimming. Placing ground baits next to seeds, boilies or pellets offers an extra attraction due to the cloud created in the water. If we follow only this aspect, we can use an over-moistened ground bait, the consistency of a porridge. Such a ground bait will create a huge cloud in the water and will definitely arouse the interest of the fish in the area. For efficient use of very soft ground bait, watertight snowshoes are ideal.
Also in the category of ground baits, we can include the traditional polenta. Polenta, although at first glance it seems to be a bait of the past, is very suitable for use in the present. Whether it is enhanced with seeds, pellets, ground bait, or liquids, polenta is ideal on waters where carp prefer grains of cereal origin. For efficient use it is necessary to follow the steps indicated in the cooking process and the correct choice of ingredients, always aiming to obtain the desired consistency.
Seeds: corn, hemp, hazelnuts, wheat, barley, peas, rapeseed, millet, sorghum, and so on. can be used as bait materials in different combinations, flavors, and colors.
The most important aspect related to the use of seeds is how to prepare them. Seeds to be properly digested by carps must be boiled or soaked beforehand. Raw cereals are not beneficial for carps in any form, the digestion process being a long one.
The seeds may be baited as such or combined with other types of bait, as appropriate. Like the ground bait, they can be transported in water by various methods described in detail in the next chapter. The most used types of cereals above are corn, hemp, hazelnuts, and wheat.
Corn has by far the highest utilization rate. It is often the basic ingredient in making a cereal mix due to its nutritional values and the fact that it is universally accepted by carp.
Hemp seeds are an irresistible food for both small and large carp. Being oily, the use of hemp seeds is not indicated in cold periods.
Hazelnuts are the seeds that can help us a lot in selection fishing. Due to their size and hard consistency, brindle nuts cannot be absorbed by small fish, lasting a little longer on the bait bed, until the carp find them.
Wheat is a recommended seed category for recreational fishing. Having a soft texture after boiling, the wheat will arouse the interest not only of carp but also of other species of cyprinids such as crucians, bream, or tomatoes.
In essence, the composition of an effective seed mixture must relate primarily to the fish we want to catch. The basic principle is easy to understand. Small carp and other species will be attracted to small seeds while large grains will help us considerably in selective fishing.
The big category would be boilies with high lactic protein content. These are among the most expensive, they are the most suitable for long parties. They have a very good protein and nutritional intake. Boilies have become over the years a bait category increasingly loved by fishermen due to their efficiency. I will call without hesitation boilies – the ultimate bait. It is a bait that has accumulated and incorporated knowledge about nutrition, fish farming, and the experience of carp fishermen. It contains two important parts that are never missing: the mix and the liquid part.
Like other types of bait, boilies can be placed in water with a wide range of tools dedicated to the bait operation.
The mix depending on the content best characterizes boilies, although many inexperienced or uninformed fishermen relate especially to the aroma when purchasing, using, praising boilies. Dissolution the boilies can be divided into hard and soluble.
Hard boilies are made by boiling or exposing to steam. They are meant to last a long time on the bait bed, the dissolution times differ according to the composition.
The solubles, as the name implies, are boilies that contain corn milk, being dried without being boiled. Soluble balls dissolve in water differently, given the water temperature, substrate type, and consistency.
When do we swim with the soluble and when do we swim with the strong?
Solubles are highly attractive boilies. Most carp anglers use them at the beginning of the game to lure carp into the area, after which hard boilies come into play. Solubles can also be used during periods without traits, to arouse the interest of carp again.
Hard boilies are balls indicated for the maintenance of the bait bed, they guarantee a superior selection of fish compared to soluble ones. “Boils” can lie to us capable carp, if we choose the right diameters.
Boilies can also be divided into 3 categories depending on the composition:
The bird food boilies are composed only of ingredients of cereal origin. The carbohydrates inside them are recommended to be used in early spring when the carps come out of the winter and summer or early autumn when the water is very hot, and the carps prefer to feed on easily digestible baits. Thus there are boilies whose base is the food of the birds also called ” Birdfoods “. They are characterized by a high power of absorption of flavor and attractants and an ability to release them into the water faster, they are also relatively inexpensive. They are better in short games and in the opinion of some in the cold season when the carp digests and assimilates the food more difficult. I don’t give a very good performance like a long race bait (games longer than 24 hours).
Fishmeal boilies are made from various fishmeal, most of the ingredients being of animal origin. Fish meals are based on protein and can be used all year round. Carps will hardly refuse fish meals due to the nutritional qualities they possess.
Unlike the previous boilies, they are a bit more expensive, they are harder to attract the fish on the ford, releasing the aroma and the attractors more slowly. It is better suited for the warm season, for longer parties, and for the lakes intensely visited by boilies fishermen. In the US they are probably among the most used and give a good yield. Once “tasted” of fish, they keep it better on the ford and create a certain addiction with a very good nutritional intake.
Bird fish boilies have characteristics from both of the above categories. The keyword of these balls is balanced, giving carps a calculated intake of protein and carbohydrates. Like fishmeal, they can be a year-round solution.
Boilies can also be divided according to size, the bait ones being between 14-24 mm, exceptionally 26-30 mm. The choice of the diameters of the boilies will be made according to the appetite of the fish but also of the carp we are targeting.
Were initially used for fodder, and then introduced in carp fishing, at which time they were significantly improved and varied. They are used alone or in addition to boilies, at a lower price. It is better to use as many types of pellets at the same time and of various sizes as possible to complement each other. There is a wide variety of pellets on the market: depending on the season, depending on the dissolution time and the way in which they are produced, the content; there are pellets for bait and hook. Every manufacturer prides itself on offering the greatest pellets in the world. Pellets are a category of bait that can be used successfully as such, or in conjunction with other types of bait. Like boilies, pellets can be made from ingredients of cereal, animal, or mixed origin.
The pellets will have different dissolution times depending on their size and components, which we will have to take into account in the composition of the bait mix. The diameters of the pellets intended for baiting vary between 2-24 mm.
The role of attraction and nutrition recommends pellets to be used at any time, with any bait. The qualities of the pellets will therefore create a visible addition on the bait bed, on the bait plate, or in the soluble bag or bags.
Other types of boilies would be those based on cereal flours that were designed to be as cheap as possible and as close as possible to the traditional bait with which fish, especially those fed with cereals are accustomed.
There are also the so-called ” supermixes ” which are made by combining 2 well-known mixes and have proven to be effective. The most popular is the combination of a “birdfood” and a “fishmeal”. They have the great advantage of combining the properties of the 2 mixes and thus catch fish faster than the fishmeals used alone and do not saturate the fish but keep it longer on the bait bed. It is best suited in carp fishing competitions when you need to catch from the first second to the last. We can boast that in the country we probably catch the best, they are widely used and are effective outside on lakes that are usually fished with either bird food or classic fishmeal.
1.5. Attraction and selection tips
Swimming must be done according to the fishery we are considering. If we intend to catch a large number of carp, we will swim as such, which is also true for the games in which we target large fish.
A. Attraction tips
In order to attract carp faster in the area where we place the mounts, we can use different fireworks related to swimming. Increasing the attraction of the bait we use is easy to achieve, based on the introduction of new elements in the bait.
Liquid attractants, such as corn syrup, additives, CSL, dip, and flavorings, have the role of increasing the attraction of bait.
Please note that regardless of the liquid chosen, compliance with the dosage recommended by the manufacturer is indicated.
How does each liquid work?
The role of corn milk is to sweeten and glue the bait material.
Liquid additives are a taste enhancer, being flavorful, while also contributing to the bait sweetening process.
CSL (corn alcohol) is a nutritious liquid that contains vitamins, amino acids, and a high level of sugars, its qualities recommending it for use especially during cold periods.
The dip can be used both in the bait and over the hook baits. The dips being extremely fragrant will increase the attraction of the bait. At the same time, they will provide a visual stimulus, if they are made in fluorescent colors, meant to leave traces in the water column.
Flavors can be added to enhance the appeal of the swimming mix, being an excellent taste enhancer. If the bait already has a specific flavor, it is recommended to use a similar flavor for optimal results.
The soluble paste is composed of the same mix used in the manufacture of boilies. The introduction of soluble paste in the bait, simple or diluted with some preferred liquids, will be a bomb of nutritional attraction. The paste brought to the porridge stage leaves a thick cloud in the water, meant to attract the carps.
Live bait can be added to bait, especially in cold periods, when carp are looking for animal protein. Therefore, it does not hurt to improve the attraction of the bait by introducing worms, worms, or larvae of Chironomus (dragonfly).
B. Selection tips
Large seeds, such as brindle nuts, have the role of driving small fish off the bait bed, being impossible to aspirate. For these situations, we can also consider the use of soaked seeds, with a stronger consistency than boiled cereals.
Dry boilies are a suitable alternative for fishing for large carp. Also called “stones”, these boilies are so hard that they cannot be drilled with a normal hook, but only with a drill. flavors much faster in water.
Washed-out boilies are the so-called balls soaked in the water from the pond/lake we fish. The softening process has the role of making boilies more easily accepted by fish. At the same time, the balls will lose their flavor, being a bit drier. This process is meant to mimic the bait already in the water for several hours on the bed, thus being ideal for large carps with suspicious behavior.
2. Swimming in launched fishing
Launched carp fishing is the most popular branch of this style, having by far the most numerous followers. Unlike planted fishing, launched fishing requires a little less equipment, thus being available to any fisherman.
Swimming in discarded fisheries can be done using a variety of swimming tools depending on the conditions imposed by the style of fishing practiced and the type of bait used.
The catapult, together with the rocket and the swimming stick, form the trio that should not be missing from the kit of any carp fisherman who prefers the fishing launched. Catapults are intended for lump swimming, being available on the market in a variety of shapes and sizes.
Catapults can be used in 2 ways. The first, and most common, is the attachment of the catapult to a rod, preferably spod type.
The spod rod is a rod intended for swimming, as the name implies. Due to the throwing power (≥ 4.5 lbs), it will guarantee the safe launch of the lumps. The use of classic fishing rods is not recommended for swimming using a catapult. However, if we choose this option we will have to correlate the throwing power of the rod with the weight of the lumps to avoid possible accidents.
In addition to a spod rod, it is necessary to use a reel equipped with a wire strong enough to withstand the shock created at launch. Ideals are textile yarns or thick monofilaments (≥ 0.40 mm) that do not present a risk of breakage. In the event of the use of a thin monofilament or textile, it is necessary to add a slightly thicker textile primer (≥0.35 mm), which copes brilliantly with even the heaviest lumps.
One tip for quick catapult recovery after launch is to place the wire in the reel clip to prevent the catapult from reaching further than we would like. The technique of throwing lumps is the same as that used in ordinary throws.
To achieve maximum swimming distances, it is ideal to use Bulgarian presses. Thus the lumps will get a perfectly round, aerodynamic shape, a little harder to obtain when they are modeled by hand. We will also be able to make more lumps in a much shorter time.
If we forgot the catapult, or we want to make our own catapult, all we need is a plastic pot, a sturdy wire, and of course a little imagination and skill. The performance of such a catapult will not be the same as those obtained with a professional catapult, but it will be enough to get us out of the impasse.
The second way to use the catapult is to fix it to the effect. The catapult on the effect was invented by fishermen who frequently participate in competitions in order to perform fast swims, throwing large amounts of bait into the water. How to use the catapult on the effect is as simple as possible. The lumps are placed inside the catapult, after which the elastic is stretched, more or less depending on the distance we intend to reach.
In order to obtain regular distances, following a fixed point swimming, the use of lumps of uniform diameter and consistency is indicated. When using the rod, in order to achieve the closest possible throws, a similar force must be applied during all throws. If we use the catapult on the effect, the exact bait is a bit easier, because we can put a sign (for example a picket), reaching each launch with the catapult up to that point.
2.2. Swimming missile
The bait rocket is without a doubt the main choice of carp fishermen when we talk about swimming on the shore. This is due to its versatility, the racquet allowing the introduction of any type of bait inside.
Swimming rackets come in a multitude of shapes, sizes, and colors. The first type to appear on the market was the classic swimming missile, with an open end and a shape that does not allow launching at very long distances.
Another disadvantage of classic missiles is the need to use a bait “lid” to prevent the dispersion of the bait material during launch. When using a mix of seeds or boilies it is necessary to press them into the missile by placing a small amount of ground put in. The role of the bait is to keep the mix in the rocket until it hits the water.
One of the concrete advantages it has over the new versions is the fact that the scattering of the bait placed in an old-fashioned rocket is made on a much shorter radius. This will allow us to create concentrated bait beds.
The second advantage is the indestructibility of the rocket. Classic missiles have been designed to last, being made of durable materials. New missiles, on the other hand, do not offer the same safety, with slightly more fragile components.
From my point of view, the first missile model is a thing of the past, despite its advantages. Today’s carp fishing is often geared towards long distances and speed, criteria that the new versions meet brilliantly.
New lure rocket models fall into 2 categories depending on how the closure is made: spring-based and magnet-based.
For a flawless seal, the variants containing magnets are ideal because they will not allow the bait to drain regardless of its consistency. Another advantage of the closure with magnets is the fact that it allows you to reach the top of the shore rocket at launch, unlike the other models that open if we do.
Modern swimming missiles have been designed to be easy to recover from water. Some open in 2 equal parts, others in 4, the purpose being the same: to keep the rocket on the surface of the water so as not to encounter resistance during milling.
Regardless of the type of missile chosen, I recommend only the use of original models. Visibly low-priced missiles are “clones” of the premium versions and do not offer nearly the same qualities. The risk of such a missile yielding only after the first launch is high.
2.3. Swimming stick (cobra)
The fishing rod popularly called “cobra” is an important element in the arsenal of carp fishermen, acquiring this nickname due to its snake-like shape. their design has been designed to send boilies at appreciable distances, sometimes reaching 100-150 m.
How does a swimming stick work? Cobra is basically a pipe, made of different materials inside which the boilies are placed. Throwing the boilies is done by a short but fast forward movement of the stick, using some momentum.
The first models of swimming sticks were made of plastic or aluminum. Currently, carbon versions are the most popular for fishermen. Carbon cobras, unlike plastic or aluminum ones, have a much lighter weight. A light swimming stick has a number of special advantages: reaching greater distances, less effort to launch boilies, and last but not least the possible avoidance of muscle fever in case of swimming a significant amount of boilies. The carbon swimming sticks were therefore designed to facilitate the swimming operation, being the optimal choice among most carp fishermen.
Why does it charge and not a swimming missile? Although the cobra is limited in terms of bait material (we can only use boilies) it has the great benefit of providing a quiet bait, ideal for games in which we are dealing with fish that have a prudent behavior.
The noise created by a few boilies at the entrance to the water is considerably reduced compared to the strong impact of the swimming missile. This aspect must be taken into account especially during the night, a period in which silence is established. Therefore, during all carp fishing competitions, snowshoeing or any other type of heavy (noisy) swimming during the night is not allowed.
Another advantage of the swimming stick in front of the rocket is the possibility of swimming in a much larger area. With the help of the cobra, we can always use bait on large areas, avoiding the agglomeration of the bait in one place. Such baits are beneficial when the fish avoid feeding on thick bait beds and prefer to constantly look for food in a certain area.
In terms of consistent bait, which requires significant amounts, the rocket and catapult are far superior to the baton. In this case, the basic bait will be made of rocket and/or catapult, the cobra being used only as a tool for maintaining the bait bed.
It should be noted that the baiting of boilies using cobra requires their prior preparation. Fresh boilies have a soft texture, which can cause disintegration during throwing. To avoid the inconvenience of breaking the balls before reaching the water, it is necessary to dry the boilies beforehand. The drying process involves placing the boilies in a special storage bag, placed in a dry place, protected from moisture. Another method by which we can prevent the boilies from being crushed is to water the baton or balls with water before they are thrown away.
For the correct use of the swimming stick, it is always necessary to correlate the diameters with the boilies. We cannot drill 24 mm balls with a 20 mm cobra, nor is it the other way around, because a diameter smaller than that of the swimming stick will reduce the distance at which the boilies will be propelled.
2.4. The bait slingshot
Bait slingshot is an element initially taken from stationary fishing. For short swimming distances, slingshots are an alternative to lumps with lumps, seeds, live bait, or boilies. The choice of the swimming sling will be made depending on: the bait material and the distance at which we intend to swim.
Slingshots have cups in which we place the bait of different shapes and sizes. Spherical cups are ideal for lumps while triangular cups are suitable for seeds, live bait, pellets, and boilies. Before purchasing a slingshot, it is recommended to check the manufacturer’s specifications regarding the optimal bait.
At first, slingshots were not designed for significant distances. Over time, the need for long-distance swimming has led to the design of new models of slingshots, generically called long-range.
How do we distinguish normal slingshots from distance slingshots? The difference is the elastic used. Soft elastics are specific to ordinary slingshots, while rigid ones are characteristic of long slingshots. The rigidity of the elastics will provide increased strength during stretching. When the swimming cup is released, the elastics will generate a much more prompt return, the speed of the swimming material thus gaining proportions. Some slingshots can provide impressive performance, with swimming distances of up to 80 m.
An important element of slinging is the accuracy of throws. In order to obtain accuracy, we must consider the following aspects. At each launch, it is necessary to fill the swimming bucket with the same amount of bait. The positioning of the sling and the stretching of the elastics will be done according to the same marks and positions.
Regardless of the slingshot model chosen, it is preferable to focus on those that have spare components available. Intensive use of the slingshot, sunlight, time and many other factors can wear the slingshot elastics, causing them to break at some point. In order not to have to buy a new slingshot, we can take a set of spare elastics from the first purchase. The set comes to our aid especially if the accident occurs on the waterfront. The immediate change of the broken elastic will facilitate the use of the slingshot in the continuation of the game. It is also possible to consider the purchase of spare swimming cups, the percentage of their breaking being, however, slightly lower than in the case of elastics.
2.5. Swimming cup
The swimming bucket is a swimming tool specific to both carp and planted fishing. In order to be used in the launched fishery, the swimming cup will be mounted on the universal thread of a liar’s tail. Depending on the distance we want the bait to reach, we will use one or 2 segments of the tail.
The main advantage of the swimming bucket is the introduction of a large amount of bait in a very short time. The major disadvantage of this method is the limited distance we can swim, it exceptionally exceeding 30-40 m.
Swimming using a bucket can be an ideal option if we place the mounts near the shore, to which we have access. Thus, we will go as close as possible to the place where the mount is, and with the help of the swimming bucket, we will insert the bait in the water as quietly as possible, right in the area where the hook is.
2.6. Hand swimming
Hand swimming is the most rudimentary possibility of swimming. It can be implemented only if is near accessible shores. If we do not have a swimming bucket or a slingshot, we can swim easily and by hand, even if the process will take a little longer. It is important that the bait reaches the area where the mount is placed, nothing more. Like bucket or slingshot baiting, manual baiting is one that does not cause much noise, a decisive factor when fishing with suspicious fish.
3. Swimming strategies
Baiting can be classified locally and extended depending on the area in which it is made. What these 2 types of baiting entail, how and when they are done correctly and many other important details will be found in this chapter.
3.1. Local swimming
Local bait is a concentrated bait made around the mount, by various means. The basic principle of this bait is to attract carp to the shear area, thus increasing the chances of a trait.
3.1.1. Soluble bags, pouches, tape, and thread (PVA)
For both launched and planted fishing, the attachment of bait placed insoluble material to or near the hook is an excellent attraction.
Soluble bags and pouches allow the use of any type of bait, while soluble tape and thread can only be used with boilies. The soluble materials have the role of transporting the bait safely to the bottom of the water, next to the hook. The bags, bags, tapes, and soluble threads in most cases are attached to the hook but can also be placed next to the lead if we use a special clip for this artifice.
Why should we use soluble materials? The small pile of bait placed around the mount will guide the fish to the hook bait, which is often like the “icing on the cake”. Also, the regular use of PVAs has the role of maintaining the bait bed by the constant introduction of the bait into the water.
The attraction of PVA materials can be improved by adding liquids (dips, CSL, additives, etc.) that cannot melt them (they should not be diluted with water).
When choosing PVA bags and bags we will have to take into account the time of dissolution in water. Some soluble materials are fast melt while others have normal dissolution times or slow melt. We can observe this aspect with a simple look at the fabric from which the bags or bags are made. The thick materials will melt slowly while the thin ones will have a short dissolution.
How to make PVA bags, pouches and wires is simple and easy for anyone, as long as we have the necessary tools.
3.1.2. The bait plate
The bait plate is a term that signifies a local swim, around the mount, somewhat more consistent than that offered by PVAs. The bait plate can be made using any of the swimming pools shown above. The idea of the bait plate is to form a pile of bait around the area where we place the hook, having the role of attraction like PVA materials, on a slightly larger scale.
Both the bait plate and the bait placed in the soluble materials are meant to provide a sufficient amount of food to the fish to attract them to the hook area, avoiding their saturation.
Therefore, we cannot say that we fish on bait plates when we throw significant amounts of bait over amount, being a regular bait bed.
3.2 Extended swimming
Extended baiting can be done in the form of a bait bed in various sizes, shapes, and quantities using a variety of bait types depending on the fish targeted and the style of fishing practiced.
3.2.1. The bait bed
The bait bed is often the cornerstone of a carp game. Although we can fish efficiently and without making a bait bed or outside it, it is often recommended to form a bait bed.
The bait bed can be built by various methods. In some situations, silent variants (swimming rod, ship model, planting boat, etc.) are preferred in order not to arouse suspicion of cautious carp. We can place any type of bait on the bait bed if we choose the right swimming tool.
The main role of the bait bed is to keep the fish in the areas where we place the mounts for as long as possible. The litter beds are made in such a way as to stop the passing fish to feed and implicitly to discover the hook baits in the process of searching for food.
Carps often swim from one side of the pond to another on well-established trails in search of food. If by the time the whiskers reach the parts where our mounts are found we do not have a consistent bed of bait, the chances of stopping them in that area are minimal. Eventually, we will have 1-2 features, after which the carps will continue to see their way and will visit us for who knows how long.
However, in some cases, carp, especially large ones, will not feed on the bait bed, but on its edge or at a distance, for various reasons. For such scenarios, combining the bait bed with the use of PVA materials or bait plates is the right solution for efficient fishing. An interesting method of attracting fish to the mount is to establish a bait line between the bait bed and the bait plate.
The shape of the bait bed is most often rectangular, the mounts being positioned above / under the bed, at its edge, or even in its center depending on how the fish feed. In addition to the classic shape of the bait bed, beds made in a straight line or in the shape of the letter T. are popular.
The linear bait bed involves the interception of fish on a large area, being an optimal method of bait on waters where the distance from the opposite shore is short. In the case of this bait, the mounts will be placed to the left or right of the bed, at different distances (usually in scale) to stop as many carp passing by our fishing spot.
The bait bed made in T combines the elements of the classic bed with the one in line, having the same goal: intercepting as many carp as possible on a slightly larger area.
3.2.2. Bedding maintenance
Depending on how the fish are fed, we must constantly consider the maintenance of the bait bed. As mentioned above, the disappearance of the bait from the bed can mean the cessation of traits and the departure of carp from the area.
The maintenance of the bait bed can be done by various means. If during the day we can use any method, of course depending on the specifics and regulations of the water we fish, during the night are indicated those that do not cause much noise.
3.3. Bait quantities
Calculated and efficient fishing involves noting the quantities of bait thrown into the water. Few carp fishermen consider this aspect, often waking up in unfavorable situations. For example, we have 10 kg of bait available for a game of 48 hours. The game starts well, the features are numerous, the bait is done constantly and after 24 hours we run out of bait, making our game difficult. In order not to suffer such inconveniences, but also to carry out smart fishing, I recommend noting the baited quantities.
In carp fishing, there are no standard indicators of the quantities of bait we need to use. Here comes the inspiration of the fisherman to anticipate how the fish will feed, how much they will eat, and how much we should swim to avoid saturation or departure of the fish from the bait bed.
The principle I follow is the following:
You can put bait in the water almost any time, but you can’t take it out!
Therefore, the keyword is moderation.
It is very helpful to determine the quantities, in addition to personal knowledge and experiences, it is indicated good knowledge of the water we fish, while also being recommended to obtain information from local fishermen.
4. Swimming on rivers
Swimming on the Danube and flowing waters is based on the same principles as that used on ponds or lakes. The only difference is the existence of the submerged current of water.
The water current will determine the need for swimming adapted to the intensity of the water flow. In such fishing, we must keep in mind to carry out constant swimming at regular intervals because the currents of water wash the bait constantly. It is preferable to systematically introduce medium quantities of bait into the water, rather than the massive bait that will be removed faster from the area where we place the mounts.
If the currents are a little stronger, some adaptations related to the bait and lure process become mandatory. It is recommended to carry out a swim upstream of the place where we fish because the current will transport the bait gradually until it reaches the fished area. In order to ensure the immediate descent and the bait to remain on the substrate for a longer period of time, ground lumps of bait are the right solution. The earth, in addition to the role of binder, will carry the bait on the substrate, not being taken by the currents between the waters.
Boilies with a round shape have a disadvantage because they can roll easily on the bottom of the water. An optimal option is to cut the boilies in 2, halves thus sliding harder on the substrate.
The ideal places for swimming on running water are those that can hold the bait for a considerable period of time. Thresholds, anaphora, sunken trees, the presence of stones, shells, or other obstacles on the substrate facilitate the bait to remain in the area, preventing it from being carried quickly in the current.
In essence, we can swim with anything on running water, as long as we consider the intensity of the current and the conditions of the place where we are.
Swimming, the key to a successful game!
One of the general rules of carp fishing is: do not bait, do not catch, adapted later and under another well-known variant.
Over the years, carp have become dependent on fishermen’s bait in certain areas of water. There are many situations in which carp associate the noise produced by the fall of a swimming rocket into the water, or boilies, with the arrival of food on the substrate. Thus, the features appear immediately after the bait reaches the water, an aspect that is not exactly accidental, the fish thus developing a Pavlovian reflex.
At the opposite pole, there are carp with a cautious behavior, which does not come close to baits, or other foreign elements.
Bait adapted to the way fish live and feed is a basic principle that requires application in every carp fishing game. Only by taking into account the habits of the fish and their way of life will we be able to catch them. Baiting is an operation that should help us during this process, not move us away from the set targets.
Therefore, you fish smartly, swimming as such, and don’t forget, the bait is meant to attract fish first, not fishermen! Stretched threads!!!