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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So now that I feel like there's a good amount of carp anglers on here willing to exchange information, I had some bait questions.
I've never caught a carp on anything but flavored sweet corn. Though, I have tried other routes. I've made now, two batches of boilies. I've gotten hits and a channel cat on them, but no carp. And though I don't think it's too bad of a mix, I just have lost my confidence in them. On the flip side, I am a novice bait maker so maybe I just need to revamp my recipe. I've also tried Wheatie balls twice now and no take. (I don't really like the idea of the little cereal balls anyway.) The next chance I get, I'm going to buy some professionally made boilies and pop ups online to give those a try.
So my question is, what baits (chum, hook baits, attractants) do you have most luck with?
I'm very interested in the different aspects of this type of fishing so I figured I'd start with the stuff that actually gets the hook in their mouths!


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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Perch:
It's called a hair rig. It allows you to have more corn on your rig at once and any bait for the matter, while leaving the hook completely exposed for the fish to slurp up with the mouthful.
Though that second picture was the exact rig that I caught my first carp using the hair knot, I do not recommend making it that long. About 1 inch hair or less is ideal so that they get both the bait and the hook in their mouth instead of only the hair.


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I usually chum with boiled feed/deer corn. Put some in a pot and fill it with twice as much water as there is corn. Bring it to a boil and set the timer for 60 minutes. Let it cool in its own water and it is ready to go. You can also use this as your hookbait. Some of the corn will be split open but there will also be some whole kernels left. I typically only use 2-3 kernels of corn on my hair.

Here is a good recipe for packbait.


As far as pop-ups... I use a couple different flavors. Tutti Frutti and Pineapple Banana made by Dynamite Baits.

http://www.bigcarptackle.com/store/product.php?productid=19080&cat=347&page=1

Picture of my rig with the Tutti Frutti pop-up. (Model 26 size 4 hook from Cabelas.)

 

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The Corn Chucker
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If you look into some baker's supplies store, you will find there are plenty of choices as well... I like pineapple...
Since it isn't cheap to use sweet corn all the time, I would use feed corn... That would double as my chum and hookbait... I don't like to flavor mine... Preferably sitting outside bubbling and getting fermented... The sour the better...
String of feed corn on a hair, and a bed of steamed roll corn, would be ideal for me...

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Vince: I was actually looking into getting some deer corn but can't find a place that carries it.

And yeah I've been watching that guys pack bait recipes here recently and was trying to decide which one to try. I really like the rice pack bait he uses but I don't like the idea of the ketchup part in it. Have you used this oats pack bait?


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Oats is probably the best packbait to start with, as it requires few ingredients and is less sensitive to changes in moisture levels. It also works pretty well year round.

That said, rice pack it probably the "in season" bait if you were to visit a North Carolina paylake. It's pretty cool because it is spongy and falls apart into what looks like a pile of maggots.

General example of packbait seasons (I am no expert but I have spent a lot of time on the bank with one particular North Carolina paylaker, and I am sure he would say there are several inaccuracies in the list below):
  • Winter
    • Liquidified bread - white bread through a blender
    • Chow - 2lb sinking fish feed (Aquamax) with creamed corn as a binder
  • Early Spring
    • Grits - 18oz instant grits, 9oz quick grits, palmful of Kosher/sea salt with creamed corn as a binder and optional flavor. I prefer 15oz instant/12oz quick as it breaks a bit quicker and is easier to work with. I premix the instant and quick grits with Kosher/sea salt into one gallon Ziploc bags. Mix the creamed with flavoring in the bucket and add the grits mix to the liquid. Mix until evenly coated and seal bucket for 15 minutes.
  • Late Spring/Early Summer
    • Oats - One canister old fashioned oats, palmful of Kosher/sea salt with creamed corn as a binder and optional flavor. I always mix the liquid ingredients (creamed corn, flavoring) and salt in a bucket first and then add the oats to that. This usually requires the addition of about a half can of lake water to be added to get the right cosistency. Mix until evenly coated and seal bucket for 15 minutes.
  • Late Summer
    • Rice - 28oz box Minute Rice, 48oz ketchup (Hunt's) and about two cups of water. Use water to rinse out ketchup bottles. Heat the ketchup/water (plus optional flavoring) to near boil and pour over rice in bucket. Mix until rice is evenly coated and seal bucket for at least 30 minutes.
    • Millet - I'll have to see if I can dig up the recipe, but it uses dehulled millet, which can be hard to find, wheat bran, flour, and corn syrup.
  • Early Fall
    • Oats (see above)
  • Late Fall
    • Grits (see above)


Your experience with catching catfish on boilies, or most other baits, is going to happen while carp fishing. The biggest influence here is the population of catfish in a given body of water. If there is a high concentration of catfish, there may be little you can do to prevent catching them.

One thing that will have an impact on catfish, at least for extended sessions (3+ days), is to remove catfish from the swim. A few of my friends have, on a couple occasions, filleted the catfish they caught and this ended up making a huge differences in the carp catch rate, since the catfish are competing and possibly pushing carp from the baited area.

There are a lot of theories as to what may increase the carp to catfish ratio, but I have heard contradicting stories over the years. The only ones I sometimes observe ;) are to limit the fishiness of baits (fishmeal, canned tuna, shrimp paste, etc), avoid strawberry as a flavor, and don't over flavor baits for waters where catfish are more likely. Other theories I have heard, which have been contradicted by different anglers, are that you can repel catfish by using spicy flavors (cinnamon) or high concentrations of salt (sea salt or Kosher salt).
 

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I've been doing really well on chick peas this year. Normally I only use field corn or sweet corn on the hook, and every once in a while commercial boilies. This year, though, canned chick peas with various flavors added have been doing really well. I normally fish a method feeder with fresh bread crumb or ground, boiled field corn around the feeder.
 

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I had horrible luck with my own homemade boilies for the first batch. Got a few good hits but they jumped off the hook. Did get one catfish.

Made the same flavors but used fluorescent food coloring, and then microwaved them instead of boiling them. Now they are far more attractive and float. Fishing in rocky or mossy ponds makes using boilies hard, since the fish could spend a while just trying to find your bait.

Pack baits upped my catch rate also. I tried dough ball soaked in strawberry carp juice around my sinker. Didn't help too much. Then I tried corn, rice, or nut packs. Buckeye blend cost me about a dollar a pound when I bought a 20 lb bag of it. Mix a pound or two with a can of sweet corn and pack it around your sinker (not the whole pound, its intended for multiple uses). When using pineapple ice cream popups I used a can of crushed pineapple instead. Best day I've had.
 
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