Fishing Guide - Tips on Fish Bait for Lake Norman, NC


Tips on Bait for successful fishing

Knowing what and how fish eat can greatly enhance your chances of being successful in catching fish.

Over time fish learn a long list of acceptable foods and develop a preference for particular items. Many of their favorite foods, such as insects, are only available for only brief periods. When their favorites are not plentiful fish can't afford to be as choosy and they'll resort to eating whatever nature provides them.

Natural and Live Bait:

Natural and live bait are successful for the obvious reason that they are what a fish prefers to eat. There are two main facets of successfully using natural and/or live bait. First, and most obviously, the bait you choose needs to be a food source that the fish is familiar with and desires. Second, the bait should be presented so that it is, or appears to be, alive and/or natural. There are many different ways to rig live and natural bait to accomplish this and with experimentation and practice you'll find what works best for the particular bait you are using. Predator fish will generally eat whatever food is most available at the moment. Most predators prefer slim-bodied, soft-finned fish because they are easy to swallow. But when other foods are scarce, predators will consume deep-bodied, spiny-finned prey such as sunfish.


There is an overwhelmingly wide variety of artificial lures available on the market and new designs are being introduced all the time.  Successful lures attract fish by imitating a known food. There are generally two major types of artificial lures. The first type appeal to fish by carefully imitating the physical appearance of a known food. Examples of this type of lure include soft plastic worms, imitations of baitfish and frogs that look and feel like the real thing. The second type of lure attracts fish by imitating the motion of a known food using flash, vibration and color. Examples of this type of lure are spinners, red-and-white spoons, fluorescent plugs and yellow poppers. While they physically look nothing like natural foods, they are among the most effective lures because they command attention and excite fish to action by imitating the motion of a fleeing meal.

Scented Oils and Gels:

Scented oils and gels can be successful enhancements to bait and lures because they appeal to the fish's sense of smell. The oil or gel is usually applied to plastic worms, plugs and live bait. Catfish anglers often use stinkbaits, cheese and dried blood.