One of the most reliable baits for brim is the earthworm or the larger night crawler. These two baits will work well when presented to the brim underneath a fishing float to keep the bait suspended.
Fishing on the bottom with a split shot to keep the worm down will allow the angler to have equal success with brim. Whatever method the fisherman chooses she should use a long-shank No. 10 hook. The brim has a smallish mouth and it can be hard to unhook when using a normal hook. Tip the hook with just a tiny segment of worm since the brim will easily pull an entire worm off a hook when it nibbles.
Once the brim begin to bite you can actually make the pieces of worm smaller since there will be fierce competition among the brim as soon as the bait hits the water. Worms will entice brim in the spring, summer and fall.
Other Live Baits
Other live baits that work well on brim are grasshoppers and crickets fished on the top of the water or held beneath the surface with a small split shot attached to the line. Mealworms, maggots, waxworms and redworms on a small jig head hook also will attract brim; these are best fished from a boat in a vertical up and down motion.
Brim that are large enough will try to take a small minnow hooked behind its dorsal fin underneath a float. Ice fishermen favor a jig head tipped with either a piece of a minnow or some sort of smaller worm like a waxworm. These are fished on jigging rods through holes drilled in the ice.
The types of artificial lures that brim will respond to are all much smaller than those used for most other species of fish. Soft plastic baits of various colors such as pink and white on a 1/16-oz. jig head will work when fished slowly around cover like stumps and brush piles. Tube jigs, in-line spinner baits, micro-jigs, and ice flies all are proven brim lures. Fly fishermen will utilize nearly any type of fly to catch brim. Small popper flies designed to resemble ants, crickets and spiders are also popular with those who fly fish for brim.