There are many types of fishing bait--some better than others when it comes to catching certain species of freshwater fish such as bass, catfish, crappie and bait fish. Most edibles may be used as fish bait as long as they have the ability to stay on the hook when you cast out your line. Beef liver is denser than chicken liver, which tends to break up in the water, thus beef liver stays on your hook longer, giving you a better chance of catching pan fish for your supper with less bait.
Catfish love stink bait--the stinkier, the better. If the smell of the bait makes you wretch, the catfish will be tempted to bite. Catfish bite on rotten liver, fermented milo, chunks of smelly cheese, slices of hotdogs, rotting fish guts, squirrel guts or any type of entrails, chunks of bait fish such as blue gill or chub, and shad. Stink bait is usually kept in sealed buckets away from the house until it's time to fish.
Nightcrawlers, earthworms and redworms are used to catch bait fish like bluegill or sunfish. The tiniest piece of worm pierced on a small hook may net you a good-sized bait fish, allowing you to fish free for the remainder of the day. Minnows, frogs, crayfish (crawdads), grasshoppers, flies and crickets make excellent live bait.
Plastic worms may be used to catch all species of bass and crappie. Crank baits such as rattle-traps work best to hook crappie, as they make noise as you are reeling the trap through the water. Plastic jigs, lures, spoons, spinners and streamers may be used to catch bass and crappie.
Prepared bait includes bread balls, cheese balls, hotdogs, salmon eggs or power bait, whole-kernel corn, cereal balls and baked potato pieces. Dill-flavored bread balls have the added attraction of being smelly--a tasty treat to tempt the catfish population in your secret honey hole.
Article Written By Victoria Ries
Victoria Ries is a freelance writer whose work has been published in various print magazines, including "Guideposts," "BackHome," New Homesteading" and "Mother Earth News." Ries enjoys working on diverse topics such as travel, animal rescue, health and home business. Ries is currently working on her B.A. in psychology.