When using artificial bait, to make it look and sound real, anglers need to "be the bait".
For instance, when working an imitation shrimp, anglers need to "see" in their mind the way a shrimp moves naturally. Shrimp don't swim fast unless they are attacked. They leisurely swim along until something spooks them, then they dart backward to escape. So, with a fake shrimp, the best technique would be to reel or swim the shrimp along naturally until hit, and then give it a couple sharp rod twitches imitating an escape mode.
Imitation minnow bait should be mimicked the same as live minnows. Again, natural activity should be realized and remembering that wounded bait are more apt to being hit than normal swimming minnows. Anglers should try to develop a twitch-pause-twitch-twitch-pause technique. One important reminder: When imitation bait are hit, it's always better to work the bait faster like it's trying to escape rather than letting it sit. After being attacked, live minnows try to swim away as fast as possible. They don't wait around to be eaten.
- Rick Frazier runs Lucky Dawg Charters out of St. Petersburg and can be reached at 727 510-4376 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org