<p style=”text-align: left;” align=”center”>So how many of us automatically reach for the 15mm freezer or shelf life’s every time we go to the local tackle shop, and how many of our favourite hook baits in the massively excessive bucket or bag we all carry are between 12mm and 15mm?
Trust me, it is something we are all entirely guilty of, and of course, there is nothing wrong with it, because it will catch you carp, but, there’s always a but, isn’t there? I promise you, if you have a read of the following few words and take on board some of the advice, then you will catch yourself more carp.
You only need to ask the wife, girlfriend, or whoever it may be, but size does matter, well, so I’ve been told anyway. It’s an age old saying I know but I reckon the opening paragraph to this piece is pretty reflective of maybe 80% of carp anglers, and I’m guilty of it as much as the next angler several times over during the course of the year.
So, what am I banging on about? Well, when it comes to bait, I’m starting to realise more and more how important bait size is, and I’m not talking about out of the ordinary, not massive sizes, more subtle changes, and it works both ways, I.E. 24mm or 10mm, but for me, my favourite bait size edge is 10mm baits all day long, and thankfully the guys at CC Moore roll 10mm baits 12 months of the year.
Now, 10mm baits are an absolute edge when it comes to carp fishing and giving the carp something they want to eat that is different to the norm. They are less of a mouthful for the fish, easier to eat, and there is a far greater chance of our quarry getting preoccupied on a bed of 10mm baits than there is on a bed of 18mm’s say. Also, on the plus side, a kilo of 10mm baits goes an awful lot further than a kilo of 18mm baits.
We all know how successful particles such as hemp, tares and maples can be when trying to trip up carp, well 10mm baits just take this to the next level, the smaller baits are easier for the carp to get preoccupied on, they keep them grazing an area for longer than a handful of 15mm or 18mm baits would ever do, which is ultimately what were looking to achieve – fish feeding for longer in the area of our hook baits giving us a greater chance of hooking them.
If you’ve ever watched carp feed over hemp or pellets at close quarters you’ll remember how they feed, mouths close to the bottom shuffling around over the baited area, well it’s the same effect with smaller boilies like 10mm’s, it just keeps them working the area for longer, making sure every last one has gone before they move off.
Now, unless your margin fishing, baiting up with 10mm’s is more time consuming than your usual bait sizes, but is still relatively easy and straight forward, now you can go down the usual route of a spod or catapult, which is brilliantly easy and efficient.
However, with small boiled baits I like to use mesh PVA bags, there are a couple of reasons for this, firstly I can attached a small mesh bag of say 10-15 10mm baits to my rig on the cast which means I have a tight patch of bait around my hook bait which is more accurate than using the catapult or the spod. But, especially so when I’m using 10mm’s is to bait up with PVA mesh bags of 10mm baits. When the mesh bags are tied tightly and the PVA is immersed in water it contracts when it starts to dissolve, almost catapulting the baits out of the PVA leaving a lovely little parcel of small baits everywhere a mesh bag lands.
Just imagine the situation now, four or five little spreads of 10mm baits, a perfect mouthful or two for any grazing carp and one of the mouthfuls has our beautifully presented hook bait sat bang in the middle of it…just perfection really!
I’m a fan of little and often baiting for a lot of my fishing nowadays, I used to fall into the trap of bait and wait, but it leaves you lacking behind those that work the swim hard or move onto any and every sign of fish. So, if I’m spodding, it will be 8-10 spods to start, then top up as and when I think it’s needed.
Now, we are coming into the time of year where smaller baits become my first choice, for the very reasons outlined above, yet I know more and more anglers who are using them all year round with some awesome results, maybe one day I’ll catch on that one myself…
Be lucky, Jim Wilson.
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