Christopher Smith

Small Or Large Baits For Smallmouth?

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There is an ongoing debate about whether bigger baits catch bigger fish. So do we use small or large baits for smallmouth bass fishing?

Small or Large Baits For Smallmouth Bass?

With so many crystal clear lakes in the Park Rapids area, anglers often insist on light tackle for most species. This includes smaller diameter fishing line, down-sized presentations and an attitude that you have to offer smaller portions to get the fish to bite.

The ultimate goal of fishing is to cause a reaction, either to feed or angrily attack. Yet, it’s actually not very common that fish attack something out of anger. It’s more likely that there is an instinct to feed.

While on a guide trip last week, my clients noticed something floating on the surface. From a distance it appeared to be a large fish, though my initial assumption was a white sucker, since that species traditionally experiences some mortality during late summer. The fish, which had died quite recently, was actually a trophy caliber smallmouth bass measuring 20 1/4-inches. The cause of death was simple to decipher, a crappie of approximately 10-inches was lodged in it’s throat.

So did that big smallmouth bass actually think it could swallow such a large meal? Ironically the fish already had quite a plump belly and I couldn’t imagine what the fish would’ve looked like had it actually swallowed the crappie. This brings up the idea that small sized baits for all species of fish, though valuable at times, don’t cause the commotion to get attention like large baits. Source

We have all seen or experienced catching a 4 inch smallmouth bass on a 3 inch Rattetrap or jerkbait. I shake my head and make the comment, “what was he thinking?”

When you hit the water, its worthwhile to try different sized baits and let the smallmouth bass or whatever species you’re fishing, tell you what they want. You can never know for sure whether small or large baits will be the ticket on any given day!

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Salty Bones Large Smallmouth Bass Action Decal – 13.5″ x 10.5″
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