raising your own bait

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by rolland, Mar 28, 2008.

  1. rolland

    rolland Fishing Noob

    Has anyone ever tried raise minnow's or nightcrawlers? I have a very small yard in the city and digging up worms never worked to good for me. I have a 125 gal and 45 gal aquarium I could use for minnows/shinners. I have also seen worm bedding sold @ fishing stores. I was just looking for opinions if it is worth it or not. Went and bought live bait today and that depresses me spending my bucks on somthing I should be able to make myself. Any advice appreciated.
  2. I don know about breeding minnies or crawlers, but I know owning 500 or more minnows is illegal without a license to sell bait.

    I know you can get good deals on bulk crawlers online, and most people just use the bedding to store a bulk ammount.

    I was gonna set up a tank a few years ago for my left over minnies, seeing I always have some left over, but never did.

  3. rolland

    rolland Fishing Noob

    buying in bulk might not be a bad idea @ all. Tks man im goin to look into that.
  4. corndawg

    corndawg Go Bulldogs!!!

    I have two round plastic tanks that I store bait in, one is aprox a foot and a half high and maybe three feet wide at the top and the others is about half that size. Each summer I fill them with water and gravel and let them sit with an aerator going in both for about a week or so to let the tap water chemicals dissolve or I’ll use aquarium treatment for a quick fix up. Then the kids and I go to the river (5 minute drive) and seine for a couple dozen minnows, I’m not sure but I believe they are really fat head minnow or chubs (shiners die to fast). I let those fish live in the tanks for awhile to cure the tank. I try to maintain several dozen minnows in the big tank and a few dozen crawfish in the other, storing them on the floor of my garage for the whole season. I feed the minnows stale bread or goldfish food and feed the craws any minnows that die.
    I have a 4’ x 4’ minnow seine that I bought at Dick’s that is actually a casting net. I threw away the metal arms that came with the net and fitted it with old golf club shafts with the heads cut off. I then tied the golf shafts to each side of the net. Once you see a school of minnows in the shallows all you have to do it quickly scoop them up in a forward motion. On a good scoop I can get 2 to 3 dozen. The crawfish are a little bit trickier. I have a spot in the river that is a mud and rock mixture. I take my net and walk backward dragging the net and kicking the rock and mud as I go. I can get 6-10 craws in about 3 feet area using this method. Like Kennedy stated make sure you have less than 100 crayfish or less than 500 crayfish and minnows combined o stay legal.
  5. Don't dig for worms. Wait for them to come to you. You can go out at night after a decent rain and catch hundreds of nightcrawlers. Take a flashlight and look at the ground. Unless you put a lot of chemicals on your lawn, you will probably see at least 4 per square foot. I bet a lot more. You have to have some quick reflexes, but they are pretty simple to catch. Always aim towardes the hole, and pull them out slowly. I meam s l o w l y. Or they will break. After all that you might need some beding to keep them, but it isn't hard to keep them even if you don't.
  6. I have a large tub in my basement where I put all the crawlers and worms I either find after a rain or leftovers from a fishing trip. They do pretty well in there since it stays cool on the basement floor year round. I have 4 to 6 inches of regular topsoil in the tub and all I do is add a little water now and then if it feels dry, and I put used coffee grounds ( and the filter ) in there, clean untreated sawdust, and wet newspaper into the soil to feed them now and then. This keeps them eating well and Ive even noticed plenty of really small ones in there so they must be reproducing or something. You have to change their soil once or twice a year or they will die but its worth the minimal effort just to have a ready supply of bait onhand.
  7. PapawSmith

    PapawSmith Bud n Burgers

    An easy way to attract and keep big healthy crawlers. Start with a big pile of leaves and grass clippings, about the size of an office desk(can you tell I'm in my office). Do this in the spring when you can pile wet leaves from last fall and fresh grass. Throw all of your organic waste on top of this pile, left over food, vegetables, coffee grounds, even dog crap collected out of your yard. The occasional rain soaked newspaper and greasy paperplates are great too, they will quickly decompose. Turn this pile every 4 or 5 days with a steel rake. Add grass clippings weekly, and all food/vegetable scraps, to keep this pile about 3 or 4 feet square and a couple feet high. It will not stink except for when you turn it and only for a short while. I suggest you place it near the fence that borders the neighbors yard that occasionally pisses you off. When you turn this pile you will not believe the crawler population that thrives here. You can do this anywhere and produce many more crawlers than you will ever need. Big fat healthy ones too.
  8. That's a compost pile. Spread it into your garden or anyplace you need to add soil. We've had one for 20 years, rototill most of it into our veg. yard every year. It'll turn sandy, rocky or Ohio clay dirt into great soil real quick. Mid summer when it's warm the pile starts cranking. It'll turn a watermelon rind into compost in 1-2 days. Can't find any trace of it. Crawlers love 'em.