Homemade Carp Fishing Bait Recipes Improving Sweetcorn For Big Fish!
Every carp angler knows sweetcorn is a great carp bait; but how do you really get the best from it and why does it works so well or not and how can you improve it anyway? These are vital questions to discover answers to in order to maximise the effects of this wonder bait on your big fish catches, so read on and be stimulated!
One of the most striking and unique characteristics of sweetcorn is its light reflective bright yellow colour. Carp have far better eye sight than most carp anglers realise and those baits that reflect a great deal of light in relatively shallow water certainly get carp's attention visually. But touch location and identification added to chemical substances dissolved in the water obviously enable carp to find sweetcorn. It is a fact that carp can locate totally un-flavoured rubber fake sweetcorn cast out randomly into a lake and at night too.
Because carp can locate fake baits with no significant smell or taste this can mean many things. It could be that the carp sensory cells in the nose, mouth, flanks, fins, on the face and so on, are able to detect fake baits by the faint but possibly detectable natural compounds that a natural substance like rubber can give off. After all, even us humans today with relatively severely dulled senses of smell and taste, can both smell and taste rubber and plastic baits (and that's in air not water,) even though these are supposedly inert flavourless items.
However, it also possible that because fish are so curious by nature and know their aquatic environment so intimately, that they can locate fake baits even at night, from the sounds emitted by casting, and even the slight disturbance of bottom silt perhaps. As in the case of humans, it may be that carp senses are programmed to notice far more small details in their own environment that are new, than those that are missing. In part, this may be to maximise the benefits of being able to immediately home in to a potential new food source opportunity, or even to detect and flee from a new predatory threat perhaps!
In light and in water penetrates enough through relatively turbid water, the visual impact of sweetcorn is an obvious one on carp. Observing the response of carp to a light wide scattering of sweetcorn over a wide area of a shallow clear water swim is often exciting stuff! At night, we know carp can locate baits with extremely low levels of any substances from an object in the water, but then some substances can be detected by carp as low as 3 parts in a billion.
The success of fake baits may be as much to do with the great advantage of having virtually no attractive stimulating signals eminating into the water at all. This is such an unusual situation in the aquatic environment of carp, especially in lakes for instance. Even rock and stones will become contaminated by smells and tastes of decaying detritus, algae and perhaps even in very very minor ways, be penetrated and effected a little by the minerals in the water itself.. (Who truly knows?)
Personally, I was not in favour of fake rubber or plastic baits at all. My feeling has always been to reward fish in return for putting them under the stress of being fished for, hooked and caught. After all, these fish do not know we are not big otter, or eagles removing them from the water in order to eat them and not return them back to their home to live on into the future! Using fake baits as hook baits seems like cheating the fish and also has the added risk that such baits can come off rigs and be eaten by fish, which could possibly have fatal consequences.
However, I'm not absolutely certain about this or if any scientific studies have been done. It does so happen that carp very often ingest inedible items which do not get broken down very much by the pharyngeal teeth. Even though relatively large items such as tiger nuts may not be broken down much upon first being swallowed by carp with no apparent ill effects, this does not necessarily apply to rubber or plastics with little ability or no natural way to break down naturally once inside fish's guts.
But to my mind you do miss many of the sensory advantages of using real natural baits to some extent if you use fake hook baits, and of course, your hook bait will not be identical to your free baits either, which misses another edge to over-come carps suspicions. I use fake sweetcorn as the main subject of discussion because it really highlights how effective small baits are even with out the huge advantages that natural ingredients based baits offer to carp senses beyond sight.
I'm no expect on electronics or sound, but I'm sure carp also locate baits by the small electric fields around metallic objects used in carp rigs and lead weights are an obvious source here. The electric field generated by a 4 ounce lead will obviously be stronger and more noticeable than that of an half ounce lead for example. Not that I'm saying this puts fish off, as it might trigger curiosity! There is the suggestion that an electric current formed via the hook, and swivel using the water as a conductor being an mineral packed electrolyte is also of significance in various ways.
I'm getting off the point a bit here, but it does seem that carp locate our baits and rigs incidentally by more subtle means than it might first appear. It is very likely that carp have other senses and abilities which modern science has yet to discover too and it is obviously the height of ignorance and arrogance to assume all is known! There is no doubt there are proven advantages of using fake hook baits in some circumstances and not just in carp fishing.
Tench are notoriously finicky feeders too, and I always find it a good sign that I seem to be particularly lucky at catching big tench as they certainly test the effectiveness of your rigs. A bonus is that here you are successful with big tench, you can be sure that the big wary carp are sure to follow them, but providing your have your choice of bait, or bait recipe suitable for the water and the fish you are targeting!
Sweetcorn is excellent as it has natural flavours, the benefits of the yellow antioxidant pigment lutein, (as in eggs,) and is a rich energy source of carbohydrates, including water soluble sugars. Sweetcorn is easily digestible and the It is a good source of insoluble fibre too which helps keep blood glucose levels under control among other benefits. The outer husk helps food movement in the gut for bettering digestion in physical ways too.
There is much to sweetcorn that is not so obvious to human senses that make it highly attractive to carp. It is ironical that even the hybridised so-called super sweet sweetcorn phenotypes are flavoured to make them more desirable to human tastes and smells as they are so dulled. In fact the additional sugar and salt make tinned sweetcorn products even more attractive to carp too, but obviously to a higher degree than with humans, carp being more sensitive. By trialling different brands you will be surprised at the differences and you do not necessarily have to pay for the most expensive products either, and the Green Giant brand is not the be all and end all for instance!
The use of the giant sweetcorn becoming more popular now in the UK is something else to be exploited and even the age old animal and pet food basic cracked corn and even corn flakes, are very proven for many uses for carp...
Many carp anglers have benefited from dying sweetcorn differently from the usual yellow, and flavouring and sweetening it for example. You might immediately think of the popular red colour which as been used for years, but then why not think again. Carp certainly respond to shade of colours in water, so what about black, blue, brown or simply a day glow yellow to boost colour even more overall?
There are many flavours other than the conventional and sometimes exceptionally costly proprietary carp fishing flavours sold in shops. You can even make your own homemade flavours and oils but that's stuff is not free here!) But how many times have you enjoyed something that had a little added honey or maple syrup? Have you heard of chocolate sweetcorn, or orange oil flavoured sweetcorn, or hemp or peanut flavoured sweetcorn? (We are really talking about adding attractor or incitant type substances here as opposed to some really incredible true carp feeding triggers here.)
But then these my friend are pretty much merely superficial ways to improve the feeding stimulation impacts of sweetcorn on pressured carp used to ordinary sweetcorn, and there are other substances that are far more potent than the average un-thinking angler will ever know!
Not all carp anglers are interested in bait and how to leverage it to multiply their catches very seriously. But I genuinely hope you are not in this group; as the ability to fully leverage the most potent aspects of bait is a gigantic leveller of angling skills, abilities and experience and resources, such as time and money!
Now, far be it for me to make any suggestions but I know a thing or 2 after more than a few years of dedicated bait research. But I certainly do not wish to point you in any particular direction to produce a differentiated and improved bait, and in doing so limit or bias your views and outlooks on bait. The true potential and possibilities of carp bait are endless! Now as a writer and author having personally received feedback from carp anglers on the differences in their bait preferences and knowledge, and their uses and applications of carp baits, from around 50 countries to date, this has obviously been extremely informative and valuable!
These are just a few introductory stimulatory suggestions to get your old grey cells working (like those of your carp...) You might wish to try soaking sweetcorn in tiger nut extract or sweetcorn oil, or in marine halibut pellet type oil for instance, or in an acidic flavour heated with added eugenol for the winter and cold water temperatures is another. Or just add some clove or cinnamon essential oils in moderation (they contain eugenol) directly to a tin of sweetcorn usually already in water, sugar and salt.
Buying trade size tins of sweetcorn is far better value than small tins of course and beware that sometimes, buying 1 kilogram bags of frozen sweetcorn can be more expensive than buying smaller tins! Beware that frozen sweetcorn generally has no added sugar or salt to boost it, although it still works of course and I'd recommend you adapt it or boost it in any of many alternative ways, including fermented sources, condiments or even with soluble powdered bait additives and ingredients for example.
If you wish to add sweetcorn to your rig in a water soluble PVA bag, simply add an attractive oil to your well drained sweet corn and quickly coat the inside of your PVA bag with oil before adding your sweetcorn before casting. (You might certain other extras to help cloud the water in the oil too for instance...) You can use so many oils and essential oils too. You can even bulk-up relatively expensive proprietary ones like chilli oil or hemp oil with very cheap sunflower seed oil or mixed nut oils.
Sweetcorn does have more secrets in itself than I am prepared to offer here some being very significant indeed, but you have something to get you thinking about it a little bit more here. Even using sweetcorn alongside other smaller bait items adds many bait differentiating and extra carp feed triggering benefits and advantages over many popular conventional approaches. Most carp anglers seem to think of using sweetcorn it on its own on a rig, and it seems to me missing the big point to simply tip a boilie or pellet with a fake piece of corn or use such a bait to balance other baits....
How many anglers have you met who have exploited a homemade sweetcorn and maize based homemade boilie? Who do you know who has exploited a better proprietary sweetcorn flavour to boost those that are intrinsically within sweetcorn or even maize?
To seriously improve your big carp catches your ability to keep ahead of the crowd is of vital importance (especially in regards to bait,) so read on and find out as much as you can...
By Tim Richardson.
About the Author
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