How to Buy Minnows for Baitfishing

How to Buy Minnows for Baitfishing
The difference between a good fisherman and a good one lies, at least in part, in the bait he uses. If you want an excellent catch, fish with healthy minnows from a reputable bait shop. Take care of those minnows by transporting them carefully and not storing them longer than necessary. That way, by the time you actually bait the minnows they will have enough wriggle to attract the championship fish you're pursuing.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Bait cooler
  • Water
  • Ice
Step 1
Locate a bait shop near where you want to fish. The shop should have clean tanks with water at around 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 2
Inspect the minnows at the shop. They should be active and swimming around their tank. If the fish are lethargic, find a different fish shop with healthier bait.
Step 3
Put fish from the bait shop's tank into a cooler with an aerator, a thermometer and water at the same temperature as the tank in the shop. According to Fishing Minnesota, bubbler aerators are preferable to other types because they provide a good stream of fresh air without heating up the water or creating turbulence that can stress the fish.
Step 4
Add ice to keep the bait bucket at a constant temperature. This will keep your minnows healthy until you use them as bait.

Tips & Warnings

Cultivate a relationship with the bait store owner if you get good results with your minnows. Find out when new shipments of minnows come in and make purchases on that day. You may wish to find multiple tackle shops and purchase minnows at the one whose shipments have most recently come in on the day when you fish.
Most bait and tackle shops keep their fish at about 40 degrees, but minnows can handle a wide range of temperatures. The key to keeping your minnows lively is not subjecting them to a sudden change in temperature by using water more than a few degrees off from the temperature in the shop.

Article Written By Isaiah David

Isaiah David is a freelance writer and musician living in Portland, Ore. He has over five years experience as a professional writer and has been published on various online outlets. He holds a degree in creative writing from the University of Michigan.

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