Fishing Baits - Mud
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The cheapest known groundbait is mud.
Strirring up the bottom or even throwing in a few handfuls of silt will wake up lots of fish and put the idea of feeding into their heads.
Unlike any other groundbait mud does not feed the fish. It doesn't fill them up and so they will continue to search for food and your bait is somewhere in the mudcloud they're investigating.
A traditional start to the season used to be to clear a swim of weeds with a rake on the evening of the 15th June, throw in a few sample baits and then return at first light to fish for tench. The disturbed bottom silt attracted fish to search for insects uncovered in the process.
Groundbaiting with mud triggers some of the same reaction.
In shallow, fast water the same effect can be achieved by wading at the head of the swim and shuffling your feet every now and then. The silt disturbed by drinking cattle is just as attractive to fish. Add a few free baits and fish down the mudcloud.
Next cheapest is remaindered supermarket bread. You can mix it with the mud if you like.
If the above prove too sticky you can temper them with maize meal, bran or even sand.
Add a little of the hookbait to help things along and you should be OK.
Never buy anything else until these have failed. You will be surprised how often plain mud beats everything else.
Unless stated otherwise: Everything in this site refers to fishing in the British Isles and similar northern European waters.