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Discussion Starter #1
What is a good rig to catch croakers, kayak style? I have seen guys using cut bait, what kind of rig is most successful. I have a medium,medium/heavy and a heavy spinning rods. Ohh and a flyrod .... can croakers be caught on a fly?[grin]
All these new salty fish to catch, so many techniques to learn.[wink]
 

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Most people who target croakers use the two hook bottom rig baited with squid, shrimp or any number of other smelly baits. They will also bite grubs and other artificials. My favorite way to fish for them is with a 4" grub with a piece of squid, shrimp or Fish Bites. The weighted bottom rig kind of takes away the fight of the fish. Yes, they will bite a fly. A clouser would work. You just have to fish for them on the bottom.

Alot of people are embarassed to fish for croaker. They call them 'bait fish' or 'trash fish'. I disagree. They fight pretty hard for their size and taste good if fried and fresh.

Tom
 

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Have to agree, croakers put up a good fight. I usually catch them on an ultra light. I use a single bottom rig(buy them anywhere, I get mine from wally world) with a very light weight. I will try the grub w/squid. Some people laughed when I broke out the ulta light, and asked what was I gonna do with that. They said they are gonna bring an ultra next time they come out after the the 20in. croaker they saw me bring in with it.
 

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Love fishing for Croakers. Have caught quite a few on light tackle. thats the best way. Either the high/low rig or a single hook with a egg sinker. Squid is the bait of choice right now, but blood worms( though expensive) are good too. Night crawlers work as well. I have even caught Croakers that have rivialed small drum, after all they are part of the drum family. I have had them take drag and tow me for a small stretch. Go get them. I will be after my final test next week.
 

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Cory, you online? I'm heading to Owl's Creek. Want to join?


Mike aka UTURN (With Yellow Emotion Fisherman)
 

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Try this...start with a small cigar or egg sinker, tie on about 3 ft. of mono leader, thread 2 curly tail grubs onto leader (green is my all time favorite) super glue one about 18 in. up from hook and the other about 10in. I like shrimp or squid on the a small red circle hook. Drag this along the bottom as you drift. The tails will get their attention but they will key in on the bait when they get close,...its deadly. You will pick up plenty of drum and flounder as well! This rig works best on areas with sandy bottoms, dont try it in weedy or rocky areas. Good luck!

SURF
 

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I caught them until I got tired of catching them at the HRBT last year. I also caught qutie a few in Owls Creek. The best luck I had was using a double dropper technique with the fly rod. Tie a polymer knot to the first fly(heavy clouser) and the tie a streamer or deceiver type fly about 8 to 10 inches behind it. The first fly will contact bottom and the second fly will suspend just off the bottom. However, I caught most of mine on the fall and caught many on both flies. Sometimes I would even catch them on both flies at the same time. Two good size croakers at the same time on a fly rod put up a good fight. I used an intermediate line, long leader and a heavy fly, but I am sure you could use a heavy sinking line and a light fly and do the same. Olive, tan and brown worked well. I didn't catch anything on yellow or chartruese.
CPR,
Chad
 

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I use lc-13 with a black bendback, absolutly deadly on croakers.
 

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While I like to fish for them with my fly rod I almost always start with a spinner. It's easier to find them that way.

In my mind the deadlest rig for Croakers is the lightest spinner rigged with a Jig you can throw and still keep in touch with the bottom tipped with 1/2 Fish Bite split down the middle .

Last year at the L/C jetty my Wife caught one right after the other on that rig next to a big boat loaded up with guys fishing two hook bait rigs on the bottom. They caught almost nothing. We were releasing and they did not like it at all. A few rude words were exchanged.

They had light rods loaded down with heavy sinkers so no doubt could not feel the bites. They were also afraid to get close to the rocks. The big boat guys were dropping the rigs straight down while she was working the jig along the bottom parallel to the jetty.

When we switched to my fly rod we caught just as many, But I had to tip the fly with the same fish-bites to keep the hook up rate. The untipped Clouser caught some but not as many. If it had not been for that big boat we would have been happy to catch a few with pure flys. I was just fun to really Pxx them Off.

Boats
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I did some research on those fish bites.....they look like a good alternative to live/frozen/cut bait. Just for the sake of leaving in my tackle box i think they would be worth a try... it is nice to hear that they work....i will go out and get some before i go out again. Any flavors/colors that i should start with?
 

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I still am not 100% sure about fish bites. Calvin swears they work. He caught some nice trout with their aid last year. I have caught quite a few fish on them also but not always sure if the lure wouldn't have caught without them.

Croaker are like most other fish: when they are biting strong they will bite anything but when they get a little picky sometimes you have to play around with different stuff until you find what they want. One day the only thing that would get them was a 1/4oz Kastmaster with a squid tentacle on it. Nothing else would work.

You guys have me dreaming of fresh fried croakers now. My wife LOVES frying fish (not).
 

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If I wanted quanity in deep water I would not pass a nice fresh real bait for Fishbites.

One good thing about the bites you can keep them for long periods and pull one out when you need it.

For tipping jigs they are particulary good. Stay on the hook well and since the jig gives you the attracting action anyway they just make it a little more enticing to the fish.

The big thing about a Fish bite when Yak fishing is you don't have all the assocated problems with carrying fresh bait. I like White in Shrimp flavor, but I don't think it makes any real difference

Boats
 

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Fish bites are the sheet when used in combination with a jig. I noticed that fish that are especially particular when it comes to bait (such as croaker, perch and flounder) the fish bites definitely seemed to help. When it came to fish such as the rockfish I don't think it mattered. Trout....they like soft crabs and I was using crab fish bites. Seeing how I was out catching with the fish bites, I have to say they helped.

One problem with fish bites. They will go bad if left in the tackle box in the heat. Do yourself a favor and through them in the ice box when you get home. Don't leave them in your truck.

And yeah, nothing is better then the real thing.
 

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I dont know where I've been but I never heard of Fish Bites before, but I will definately try them out! I like working my jigs tipped with some kind of bait as well, you just catch more fish that way.
SURF
 

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I keep them in the Fridge between trips. One thing you don't do is leave them in a soft tackle bag in your Basement between trips.

Mouse ate a hole in my bag and chewed up the fish bites like they were a piece of Cheese. Must be something to them

Boats
 

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I've definitely cleaned house on the croaks using a curly tailed grub (white & pink or chartreuse & orange) on a 3/8 oz. jighead tipped w/ squid strip. Most effective in shallower water (i.e. less than 20 ft.) Outstanding for croakies and also catches trout or flounder. I've heard some of the Fish Bites discussion/controversy/ arguing and after reading some of the previous posts..... I'M GETTIN' ME SOME!! Sounds like they would be perfect for the jig rig out of the kayak sort of thing.
 

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According to Dr. Carr, the guy who invented the stuff, they will still work after they've dried out, it just takes longer for them to activate. I caught a croaker last week on a chunk that was as hard as a rock. He does suggest people keep them in the refrigerator between trips. As for boat's mouse, I'll have to tell him about that, maybe he'll develop a new mousebites.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
mousebites....i will have to try those too...
nothing like catching a nice 2 incher, filet it up and deep fry it with cajun batter....[wink]
 
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