The great boilie revolution in carp fishing meant that in Europe, carp became very used to being caught over large beds of boilies as their use became almost universally accepted. However, those who have been individual enough to do their own thing have always had the edge over fishing boilies conventionally.This may be down to a realisation that carp love to feed intensively upon small food items which is what they do naturally so efficiently. The advantage of providing a bed of smaller food items for carp is that you get different type of feeding compared to using normal 14 to 18 millimeter boilies.
In fact most anglers who have fished over mini boilies, or particle baits like baits have rally benefited in achieving better catches than just using boilies alone on many waters. For example when fishing boilie hook baits over peanuts, hemp or chopped meats, or over beds of ground bait or even crumbled boilies (or combinations of these for example.)
The idea of fishing over masses of paste baits never seems to occur to most anglers these days either. The idea of utilising dissolving attractor baits that usually carry the same additives or flavour combination as the boilie fished over the top or them has produced many great catches. This is especially on hard fished waters and in winter where the advantage is plain to see.
After a period of time only the hook baits are left, the attractor baits having dissolved and leaving a great trail of carp pulling particles and stimulants in the swim. The chances of hooking a fish where just your hook baits are available are the best of all. When you’re fishing over 30 or 300 boilie baits your chances get much lower especially with the risk that the fish will only eat a few baits and possibly stop feeding.
The idea of fishing over bread based ground bait is having a renaissance in the UK but its simply that anglers’ preferences and fashions that change not necessarily the effectiveness of the chumming method. It is obvious that any method of pulling fish into your swim in a feeding mood without arising undue caution is beneficial to results. Many times anglers have seen carp rolling over beds of boilies not to get a ‘take.’ But fish can and do avoid swims with big beds of boilies on many hard fished waters where masses of boilies are applied, even fleeing the area.
Using particles instead of boilies to produce preoccupied confident feeding has always been popular over the years. There have been many massive hauls of big carp over maize or sweetcorn all over the world for generations. Where results begin to reduce new colours, flavours and stimulants are used to bring them back to life very effectively.
You may wonder what easy way of making boilies like particle baits. Best to make up your base mix dough as usual, roll it flat and simply chop it up into tiny pieces on a chopping board with a sharp knife. These can be air dried and used as paste which is excellent, or boilied if you want longer lasting baits. These can have extra attractor dips or soaks added and anything from betaine to liquid liver, to beetroot juice works.
Carp can definitely relate danger with anything in their surrounding. So any way to break up this relationship between baits and danger produces better results. I you have seen carp ignore sweetcorn due to angling pressure then you can see what you’re up against on some waters. But this is not a problem. The nature of a bait can be changed radically. For example introducing liquidized sweetcorn in a slurry or slop type ground bait is extremely effective.
These days many carp anglers just don’t bother with trying different approaches and slavishly go to the fishing shop and buy conventional boilies or halibut pellets off the shelf never realising the improved results they’re missing out on. Even though using a mixture of various pellets and boilies of different base mixes is an edge to confuse the fish.
Using different baits in a swim in terms of protein content, digestibility, permeability and porosity, oil, enzyme, vitamin and mineral contents have the edge over just using the one type. Usually there are different baits of various descriptions in a lake at one time, and using a variety can tap into fish’s preferences at any period of time. Most carp anglers realise carp and indeed individual carp can display bait preferences which when exploited make them easier to catch, so why not improve your chances?
Next time you go buy bait try doing the opposite of what most anglers did last week on your water and see the difference, maybe using a mass chum bait with a different buoyancy and behaviour like stimulant soaked hemp flakes and corn flakes perhaps…
The author has many more fishing and bait ‘edges’ up his sleeve. Every single one can have a huge impact on catches. (Warning: This article is protected by copyright.)
By Tim Richardson.