What Fish Can you Target on Lures?
Top Saltwater Fishing Lures, Saltwater Flies, Saltwater Plugs, Saltwater Poppers, Bucktail Jigs, Saltwater Spoons Etc. – Getting you into the Action!
Let us all consider our environment, keep it clean of litter, etc. hooks, glass, plastic, and line are extremely dangerous to both, humans and animals as well as birds and fish in and around our waters.
Let us take our litter home and dispose of it in a proper manner.
If we have old bait left over, throw it into the water so that it can be consumed, rather than leaving it to rot on the shores.
Let us also take a serious look at preserving our source of pleasure!
This is a big one Folks, It is most evident that our Fish Resources are in Grave Danger, the success rate between the 1970s and the 2000s has dropped by at least 50%.
The fish are fewer and it has become more difficult to catch the big one.
It has become time to practice Catch and release.
Believe me; Mother Nature rewards those who preserve the environment and the life in it.
Since I started doing this, my catch rate has increased drastically. Try to encourage others as well. Report any form of environmental abuse to the authorities, it is your pleasure that others are abusing.
It is important for the hunter to take only what he needs to sustain himself and his family and return the rest unharmed for another day. A good knife can also come in handy!
Another big one is the collecting of bait. Our fish seem to spend more time in deeper water and on reefs; this is due to over-harvesting of bait, a natural resource for our fish.
As you can imagine, when the food source lies only in deep water where the bait hunter has no access, this is then where you will find the fish.
Let us take a serious look at our environment:
Everyone always asks, “Why do the Boat Fisherman always have good catches?” Well, they are where the Fish have Good Resources for survival.
Old School! / Tried & Tested! / New Lures!
- I aim to bring you some ideas for your tackle box.
- Some old school lures.
- Some tried & tested Lures.
- New Lures.
- All the artificial baits you need at your fingertips.
- Style ideas.
- Color ideas.
- Some retrieval methods.
- And much more.
- some of the well-known Lures are, Rapala, Halco, Storm, CID, Chase, Strike Pro, Pulsator, Berkley, Gulp, MirrOLure, GT.
- In order to get a good picture of your catch, you will need a quality camera!
A good general selection of Flies for fishing Harbors, Lakes & Estuaries would be:
Salty buggers, Grunter Charlies, Polar fiber glassy, Whistler, Poppers, Crab or Shrimp patterns.
As a fly fisher, you will target the following species, among others; in Harbors, Lakes & Estuaries:
Baitfish, Bonefish, Bull mullet, Sand shark, & Skate/Stingray, Bartail flathead, Springer, Garrick, Grunter, Bream, Cave bass, Baracuda, Shad, Kingfish, Kob, Snapper, Tarpon, Pompano, Stupmpnose, Pike, Sole, Shark & many more.
A good general selection of flies for fishing rock & surf would be:
Popper, Whistler, Crazy Charlie, Maxi’s dog’s breakfast, Clouser’s minnow, Tarpon, Crab or Shrimp patterns, Baitfish & Squid patterns.
As a fly fisher, you will target the following species in the Gulleys & Surf:
Reef fish, Shad, Kingfish, Garrick, Kob, Snapper, Pompano, Stupmpnose, Pike, Bonefish, Tarpon, Bull mullet, Sand shark & Skate/Stingray & a few others.
How to Fish the Flies:
Shrimp, Squid & Crab patterns, I would say must be fished close to or on the ground, so remember to give them time to sink & then work them with a slow, jerky retrieve. Watch this!
Salty buggers, Crazy Charlie & Polar fiber glassy, should be retrieved at medium to slow speed with some slight jerk action, but mostly slow swimming, normally a “Pull, Pause – Pull, Pause”, for best results.
Maxi’s dog’s breakfast, Clouser’s minnow, Tarpon & Baitfish patterns, Should be retrieved as fast as possible, or with an occasional short pause in the retrieve. So “Fast, Stop – Fast Stop”, for best results.
Patterns & Colors:
When you look at your flies, you will see that they represent or imitate certain bait species. So when choosing a fly, you must keep in mind what species you want to target & what their food source or diet is.
With color, we try to match the natural colors of the bait. Shrimp is pink, brown, yellow or white often with black stripes on their abdomens, feelers, legs & big protruding eyes.
Another aspect of color and this is a norm throughout. ” In clear water go for white or natural colors. In dirty water, you can go for brighter colors. At night or after dark, you can go for really dark colors even black, as they cast a better silhouette in the water.
Bucktail Jigs & Drop-Shot:
Bucktails are mostly the same, The main difference will be Weight & Color:
The most popular color is white. It is always good to have a black or dark color in your box.
The added tail gives the Lure a whole different movement in the water. Enough to drive the fish crazy.
Most common trailers are Curlytail & Twintail, any plastic with a great movement can be used. I have even seen fishermen using real Choka or Octopus tentacles to accomplish the same!
How to Fish a Bucktail:
Let it sink, then give it a couple of sharp jerks; (Jerk-Jerk-Reel) then (Sink-Jerk Jerk-Reel)
Also (Jerk-Pause-Reel) then (Jerk-Pause-Reel)
Switch up your retrieve speed too. Try fast, medium & slow retrieves, Fish don’t always like it the same.
Bucktails are generally fished on Light tackle & can be very effective for Scratching just about anywhere, Harbors, Lakes, Estuaries, Bays, Gully’s, Inshore holes, Troughs, Channels, Sandbanks, Rockpools Etc. when other Lures are not producing or conditions don’t allow the use of other methods of fishing.
Quite a broad range of fish can be caught with these Lures.
Drop-shot is basically a Lead-Head with a Built-in Hook & a Plastic Bait attached to the Hook:
The Lead-heads can have slightly different designs, hook size & weights, they can be plain lead or custom painted heads.
Your Softbait plastics will be attached to the Lead-head. There are a lot of different Softbaits that can be used for Drop-shot. We will name some popular ones under the heading Softbaits.
Drop-shot is generally fished on light tackle & can be very effective for Scratching just about anywhere, Harbors, Lakes, Estuaries, Bays, Gully’s, Inshore holes, Troughs, Channels, Sandbanks, Rockpools Etc.
You can catch just about any saltwater fish using Drop-shot. You will be lucky to get some good size fish, but mostly with this method, you will not be targeting the monsters.
Plugs & Poppers:
- There is quite a good selection of Plugs & Poppers available to anglers.
- There are quite a few different colors available in our stores.
- There are a few basic designs.
There are Five Main types of Plug, Namely
The needlenose plug is designed to move fairly fast through the water often diving slightly as the nose dips down into the water and at the same time causing a splashy darting action on the surface, such as a fleeing baitfish would do. Because of the long slender profile of the needlenose, it is excellent for long-distance casting.
There are two types of needlenose as illustrated in the picture above. The long nose which is also rounded on the nose will make less noise because of its slender shape & rounded nose. It can be retrieved slightly faster than the short nose. The short nose plug, in the illustration, has got a box-shaped nose with flat edges so it will slap & splash more on the water’s surface. It is fished a little slower.
Chisel Nosed Plug:
The Chisel Nosed plug has a narrow, flattish body with a chiseled nose.
This plug is better used when there is a lot of wind because it tends to push some water so it doesn’t get pushed around in the wind as much. Because of its flat face and box shape, it makes a slapping sound as it splashes across the surface.
The more pointed the chisel nose, the quieter the plug and the faster it can be retrieved. The more flat stubby chisel nose is fished a little slower, it pushes a lot more water and so it also makes more noise!
These are fantastic surface lures. The flat-face version (1.5 – 2 oz) works exceptionally well in windy conditions, maintaining good contact with the water surface thus leading to noisy surface action that attracts fish.
Ideal Lure for really big shad, Garrick and kingfish.
The cone plug has a round body just like an ice-cream cone & and a box-shaped chisel nosed face. Because of the rounded body, this plug rolls slightly from side to side, causing the nose to dig in a little on the left & right as the plug is retrieved. This rolling action causes water to be sprayed out at the sides, causing quite a commotion on the surface of the water.
The wedge plug is a broad, flattish box-shaped Plug with a chisel nosed face. Because this plug is box-shaped & very broad with a rather blunt nose, it makes a hell of a commotion on the surface of the water with some rather pig splashes. This plug cannot be fished too fast. It is an all-time favorite with Garrick!
There are Four Main types of Popper, Namely
The flat face popper is good for general use as it sort of rides between the slant face & the Cup face popper. This popper pushes water but doesn’t make too much of a plooping noise & doesn’t splash as much water either, it can be worked at a medium speed.
Shallow Cup Face:
The shallow cup face popper is designed to push water and cause quite a lot of noise & water splashing commotion, it can not be retrieved very fast. This popper is preferred by most anglers for use in the surf & on reefs.
Deep Cup Face:
The deep cup face popper is designed to push a hell of a lot of water with a big plooping noise & create a tremendous amount of splash on the water surface. This popper is designed to fish very deep water. With the amount of noise & splash it makes, it is able to attract a fish through their sensitive lateral line that picks up vibration from deep below the surface. The fish will rush up from the depths and attack the popper with one hell of a force, often clearing the water.
This popper cannot be retrieved quickly at all, It is fished with a very slow, “Pull stop-pull stop action. Under this type, we also have the Chugger plug. It has a very big head so it pushes even more water. The name Chugger is derived from the sound of a steam train.
The Slanted face popper is good for use in quiet waters such as bays, harbors, lakes, Lagoons & estuaries. The reason for this is that it pushes less water so it can be worked a lot faster with less noise. Fish in calm waters tend to be warry & spook a lot quicker, you sure wouldn’t have much luck with a noisy over splashy popper. The surface pencil or twitch baits are modeled after this popper. The more slanted they are, the faster and quieter.
The micro lure range of poppers has taken off of late & is responsible for a lot of good catches in bays, harbors, lakes, Lagoons & estuaries.
Live Target Swim-baits are quite effective in deep water. You want to give them a chance to sink before retrieving. You can experiment with the retrieval and find what works best, switch up the retrieve a bit, alter the speed and give an occasional pause. With the Crawfish, Crab, and Shrimp patterns, you want to fish them right on or near the bottom with a slow jerky action as if imitating the natural movement of the Craw, Crab or Prawn.
Soft plastic Swim-baits are used in conjunction with Lead-heads to form what is called a Drop-shot. There are a number of types and colors available. One wants to be sure to match the head with the bait as it will not swim effectively if the head is bigger or smaller than the bait or too light or too heavy for the bait. It is also recommended that you use weedless heads near rocks or when there is a lot of seaweed.
You want to work these lures in choppy or working white water near rocks and sandbanks for best results. Color selection will depend on the baitfish that you are trying to imitate as well as the watercolor and the natural light conditions at the time. Darker colors in poor light and brighter colors in Bright light.
There is a Huge variety of Soft Baits available to the Angler:
Live Target Swim-baits:
- Some Patterns available are Paddletail; Shrimp; Crawfish; Crab; Shad; Minnow.
- Some popular colors are Sand Eel; Sardine; Mackerel; Mullet; Bonito, Shad.
Soft plastic Swim-baits:
- Some Patterns available are Minnow; Sprat; Twin-tail fluke; Curly tail; Jerk shad; Paddletail; Skirts.
- Some popular colors are Sardine; Mackerel; Anchovette; Mullet; Smoky shad; Chartreuse glow; Pink glow, Pearl.
There are various types & shapes of Spoons:
Spoons can be fished in shallow or deep water. They can be retrieved fast so that they swim near the surface in the water or medium so that they swim in mid-water. For some species, they can be left to sink to the bottom & then pulled along in the sand fairly slowly with the occasional jerk. A great technique for Kob! Spoons are quite streamlined and rather heavy & so they can be cast a very long distance getting you into some deep water.
Will generally cover your, Bullet, Vee back, Round back, Twisty & S-Bend.
Lead seems to oxidize very quickly so it is necessary to rub the spoon with fine sandpaper or in the beach sand in order to get it to shine. The fish often prefer a more natural-looking spoon, especially in calm, clean water. This is where the lead spoon with its dull shine comes to life!
These are old school Spoons, however, they are still very much on the market.
Also, take note that a lot of the modern-old school Spoons are now up to date with technology and so they have been tweaked for better performance! These Spoons are tried & tested.
Excellent for hunting Shad, Kingfish, Garrick, Pike & Kob, but other species have been caught using this Spoon.
Will generally cover your, Bullet, Vee Back, Round back, Twisty & S-Bend.
Chromed spoons work much the same as the lead spoons. This is the spoon to go for when you are looking for that extra flair or shine in the water as the spoon darts around. A good go-to if the fish are not interested in the lead spoon.
These are old school Spoons, still on the market, also tweaked for better performance! These Spoons are tried & tested.
Excellent for hunting Shad, Kingfish, Queenfish, Garrick, Pike & Kob, but other species have been caught using this Spoon.
Will generally cover, Vee back, Round back, Twisty & S-bend.
The copper spoon fished slowly, bouncing up an down off the sand is sure to get you those fish feeding on the sandbanks.
These are old school Spoons, still on the market, also, tweaked for better performance! These Spoons are tried & tested & are mainly used to target Kob, but other species have been caught using this Spoon.
Will generally cover your, Toby, Couta casting, Iron candy magic missile, Chase bullet, Iron Candy bullet, or Cid casting Sprat, just to mention a few.
Toby spoons are lightweight spoons with a very thin blade-like thickness which causes them to flutter in the water and dart around when retrieved. They are great for fishing shallow water and almost always catch when other spoons fail. Great for light tackle fishing. They are colored on one side and plain on the other.
Some popular colors: Blue flash; White flash; Orange gold; Silver; S-Black.
Couta Casting Spoons:
These spoons are great for getting you more distance, they are fished very fast.
Some available colors: Pink glow; Pearl flash; Green glow; Blue glow; Chartreuse; Sardine; Glow; Hot orange.
Iron Candy Magic Missile Spoon:
Some available colors: Redhead; Green glow; Pink glow Pearl flash; Snoek chaser; Chartreuse glow.
Iron Candy Bullet Spoon:
The Iron candy Bullet spoons are great for distance casting, they are fished very fast. They are similar to the Iron candy Magic missile spoon except they are pointed at both ends, sort of arrow-shaped.
Some available colors: Glow; Pink glow; Orange glow; Blue glow; Green glow; Pearl flash; Chartreuse; Hot Orange; Pink flash.
Iron Candy & Chase Casting Sprat Spoons:
Some available colors: Pink flash; Chartreuse flash; Sardine; Clear Blue; Clear; Readhead; Mackeral.
These custom Spoons catch just about anything, but mostly the fishermen have been landing, Shad, Kingfish, Queenfish, Garrick, Kob, Bonito, Snoek, Yellowtail among others.
Hard Plastic Baits:
There is a Huge variety of Hard Baits. I will list a few of the Successfully, Tried & Tested ones.
Some available colors: Sardine; Readhead; Mackeral; Glow; UV-Orange; Chartreuse; Clear Blue; Clear.
There are a few different types of Stick bait. There is a floating and a sinking variety. The floating stick bait comes in an equally balanced or back weighted type. The balanced one slides through the water, diving slightly and popping back up again, when it slides it tends to slide left and right with quite a strong action.
The back weighted one sits vertically in the water and when it is given a jerk it darts around and dives, only to pop up quite quickly on the pause and back into the vertical position. This one should be fished slowly with a regular pause.
There are a few different types of Stick bait. The Slim bait has a very slender profile. The Slim bait & the Minnow Swimbait also falls under the stick bait category.
Slim baits are very sleek and slender in profile.
Some available colors: Sardine; Readhead; Mackeral; Glow; UV-Orange; Chartreuse; Clear Blue; Clear.
The minnow is mostly Lipped and so id dives and has an amazing swimming action in the water, imitating an injured fish.
Some available colors: Sardine; Readhead; Mackeral; Glow; UV-Orange; Chartreuse; Clear Blue; Clear.
Must have in your Tacklebox:
- Spoon: Chromed S-Bend & Vee; Toby, Sprat, Couta casting, Magic missile, Bullet.
- Bucktail Jig: “White” “Yellow” & Black, or any dark color.”
- Drop-shot: Various Lead-Heads; Shrimp, Crawfish, Crab, Fluke, Paddletail, Minnow.
- Plug: Needlenose, Chisel nosed & Wedge.
- Popper: Deep Cup, (white with Red-head.) Flat face, Micro popper.
- Hard Plastics: Shiverstick, Slim-bait, minnow Swim-bait.
- Clear or White.
- Black or dark color.
- Pink, Chartreuse & Green Glow.
Lure colorer / Visibility, Watercolor & Depth comparison:
- If you are fishing Shallow clean water – best stick to Lighter colors/Clear & White!
- If you are fishing off-color water – use Darker colors, Glow or 2-tone combinations!
- If the sun is shining, a clear, bright day – use Lighter colors!
- If you are fishing Medium depth water best use Medium colors – Yellow, Blue, Green & Medium 2-tone colors!
- If it is overcast or cloudy – use Medium to Dark & Darker 2-tone colors!
- If you are fishing very Deepwater best use darker colors – Black, Purple, Glow & Dark 2-tone!
- At night use very dark colors – Black, Purple, Luminous & dark 2-tone combinations.
- Black is excellent in most conditions!
Basic Colors from Early Morning hours till late Evening hours:
- Black, Purple, Blue, Green – from before Sun up to Noon!
- Yellow, Orange – Noon!
- Pink, Red, Purple, Black – from Noon to after Sundown!
Some Good Color Combinations:
- Good trigger colors are Bright red& Bright Orange!
- Harrison’s loop knot (Rapala knot) excellent knot for allowing free movement of the Lure when attached to your line.
- Other options used are:
- Connecting a swivel between your line and the Lure.
- Using a Quick clip to connect your line to the Lure. This also makes for easy changing of Lures, without snipping a piece of the line every time you change the Lure.
- A lead spoon can be rubbed in the wet beach sand in order to make it shine.
- You can use a Drone to take some awesome action shots from high up!
Cheap or Brand Names:
It’s true, we all work on a tight budget and tackle can be rather pricey. For me personally, It has become important to have quality products. They may cost more but, they last much longer.
Name brands, are usually fitted with Top of the range hooks and rings & are very professionally finished.
I don’t condemn cheap brands at all. I myself, have in the past, especially when starting out bought & used cheap brands, that include Rods & Reels. I still use some of them today.
They work exactly the same as the expensive ones, but the hooks, rust and blunt quickly, the color coating chips & peels after some continuous use.
For example, you can buy cheap Equipment and have to do some maintenance on it after a couple of outings. I must say there aren’t many Lures that have cheap knock-offs, but Rods & reels, Yes there are plenty to be had! Now the good quality recommended Lures & Tackle will last quite a long time. It is fine to start out on the cheap brands until you feel ready to upgrade.
So, in conclusion. You should now have a good understanding of the different types of artificial baits, their color representations & their behavior.
I hope that when you next go to purchase your tackle requirements,
It takes you less time to purchase your Lures, with Less stress & uncertainty,
because you are now shopping with knowledge and confidence.
Well my Fishing Friends, Hopefully now you are ready to go Spin Fishing!
“PLEASE remember to practice Catch & Release!” in order to preserve our fish stocks!
I am here for you and I will be more than happy to help you out where possible!
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