What Is Fishing Bait?

What is Fishing Bait?

You are learning how to fish and about the fishing gear required for fishing. So, you know that you have to attract and trap the fishes to catch them. Now, you want to understand how to do that, and what role does a fishing bait plays in it?

What is fishing bait? Fishing baits are food for the fishes to lure and entice them. Once the fishes attract towards the bait, they bite it and get hooked. There are many types of fishing baits, including natural and artificial lures. You have to select the best bait depending on the kind of fish species you want to catch.

To know more about the fishing baits and their types, read this article. I have elaborated in detail about fishing baits and lures here.

Detailed Information About Fishing Baits

Fish baits are the materials that help in attracting and trapping fishes in a hook. Before, anglers used live insects, worms, or small fishes to lure the fishes. But with time, different types of artificial baits have become readily available to catch fishes.

For the fishing gear, anglers choose a fishing rod, reel, and fishing line. After setting this equipment, they attach a hook at one end of the fishing line – the end that goes into the water. They attach a fishing bait to lure fishes with the hook and get them trapped with the hook.

Fishers select the fishing baits that resemble the prey of the fish they want to catch. That bait makes movements and sounds to attract the targeted fish. So, the predator, targeted fish goes after the ideal prey fish and get hooked to the fishing line. That is how anglers trap and catch fishes with the help of fishing baits.

Why Are Baits Important For Fishing?

Anglers use baits to represent the prey that their target fish feed on and chase. These baits lure the targeted fishes and trap them to bite the bait. Once the fish bite on the bait, they attach to the hook. Due to this activity, the fishers feel the tug through the fishing line and start rewinding the line.

The baits selected by the anglers are of utmost importance because of their size and shape. They represent an ideal, real prey of the target fish. If you fail to choose the right fishing bait, there is a high possibility that you will go back home empty-handed.

What Are Different Types Of Fishing Baits?

Two main types of fishing baits further divide into different kinds. These two different types of fishing baits are natural baits and artificial baits or lures.

Let’s learn about these two types in detail!

Natural Baits

Natural baits are live insects, worms, or small fishes that other fishes prey on and feed. They help in catching fishes because they are real and smell natural. So, it becomes easy to attract the target fishes towards the natural bait.

The natural baits include minnows, worms, crayfish, grasshoppers, cricket, shrimp, and leeches. There are many other natural baits that you can use. Choosing a natural bait depends on the type of fish you want to catch.

Moreover, you have a choice to use fishing baits as a whole, stripes, chunks, or pieces. It depends on the fish you want to catch its preferences and its activities.

Artificial Baits Or Lures

As the name indicates, artificial lures imitate the movements, colour, shape, and size of the targeted fish’s natural food. Artificial baits are available in various designs to handle different types of fishing. Also, you can easily find them in tackle shops and use them more than one time.

There are several types of artificial lures available, such as:

  • Jigs
  • Soft Plastic Lures
  • Spoons
  • Spinners
  • Popper
  • Crankbaits
  • Flies

You can select any of these lures as per the targeted fish, weather conditions, and water body. So that your fishing becomes effective and you catch many fishes.

You must consider these three essential factors when you are buying an artificial bait:

The Shape of the Bait

As said, the artificial baits represent and mimic the live baits. So, the lure’s shape should resemble the insects, worms, and other prey that the fishes feed. Most of the artificial baits have the exact details like the real prey. That is why it is crucial to find the right shaped lures.

Size of the Bait

Lure’s size should correspond to the size of the fish you want to catch. The bait must fit entirely in the mouth of the targeted fish to capture it.

If you are fishing for large fishes like bass or striper, then choose larger and big baits. In comparison, if you want to catch smaller fishes, such as trout, pan fishes, or crappie, then select smaller baits.

Colour of the Bait

Colour holds an important place in terms of visibility and the colour of the prey fish. Moreover, it would help if you studied the waters in which you will be fishing for the colours. If you are fishing in muddy waters, then select a bright colour bait. But, for the fresh and clear water, you can choose natural colour baits.

A bright colour bait will be visible in dingy waters to the targeted fish. So, bright colours like yellow or orange would do the job. In contrast, you can use subtle coloured baits in clear water.

What Are Some Good Natural Fishing Baits?

Anglers use natural fishing baits for centuries to catch fishes. Different live baits attract different types of fishes. Further, fishes also bite harder on the natural baits, which works in favour of the fishes. It is not easy to acquire natural baits, and you can use them only one time.

Some of the popular fishing baits you can use are:

Worms: Many fish species go after worms and bite them. Also, you can find worms with ease.

Cricket: Crickets are not quite common, but bass fishes and some other fishes can bite it.

Minnows: Minnows are the most popular and effective natural bait. These fishes are available in different sizes and shapes. Also, you can catch minnows yourself or buy them.

Leeches: Leeches can stay hooked in the strong currents and fast-moving waters. So, you can try them in such water, but fishes do not strike them often.

From Where You Can Get Fishing Baits?

One single type of bait will not work for every species of fishes. So, you must select the fishing bait after researching the waters, fish types, and weather. You can get to any tackle shop near your fishing area. There, you will get the best baits for your selected water stream. Further, the local shopkeeper or fisherman can also guide you about the fishing lures that give results.

What Is The Best Bait For Bottom Fishing?

When it comes to bottom fishing, the idea is to let the bait sink to the bottom. For bottom fishing, you have to ensure that your bait bounces underwater. You need to drag your bait along the bottom to lure fishes. So, you can do this activity through two types of baits: natural and artificial.

The natural bait can also be of two types: dead or alive. Dead fish is an easy way to catch fishes, as you can buy it from any tackle shop. Also, you can use cut-ups of fish as a trap. The idea is to let the bait sink to the floor and attract bottom feeders.

Second, you can use natural, live bait. Live baits mean using an entire fish, worm, mullet, or minnows to trap fishes. It takes some effort to set up live bait, but it pays well too. The idea is to create a movement just like prey fishes so that the bottom feeders get attracted to the live prey.

Lastly, you can use several artificial baits or lures to catch fishes. Artificial baits come in many sizes, shapes, and designs. Also, it takes some effort and skills to use a trick and drag it at the bottom. Mostly, you can use bucktail jigs, vertical jigs, or spinners for bottom fishing.


Now, you know what fishing baits are and why they are essential for fishing. Fishing baits make fishing achievable and fun for you. So, search for the baits that befit your choice of fishing and get them from your nearest tackle shop.

Steve Hudson

I have been an outdoor activities enthusiast from teenage. I have been going out with my parents on different outdoor activities such as camping and hiking. After moving to a town surrounded by three well known fishing spots, I started fishing and started using all kinds of tricks and equipment to make the most out of each adventure I pursued. Over the years I have been camping outdoor, hiking and following my passion of enjoying life at full. Few years ago, I started writing about my thoughts, experiments and ideas about outdoor, fishing, hiking and more. This blog is a compilation of that plus tips, ideas and products that can make life more meaningful, enjoyable and a pleasant.

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