How Often Should I Bait Up on Busy Venues?
On a busy day ticket venue, how often should I bait up and if bites are forthcoming, how much bait would you look to introduce after a bite?
For as long as I can remember, I have fished day ticket venues up and down the country and in general, they are well stocked with a larger head of fish than a typical syndicate venue. With such a large head of fish, I have always placed my faith in baiting up heavily to start with at the beginning of each session; these venues are often busy and you need to give the fish a good reason to drop down and feed. My mix hasn’t really changed over the years, always consisting of a mixture of hemp, sweet corn and 10mm boilies. This year I have been using the Live System to good effect, combining this with a good helping of Hempseed and Frozen Bloodworm.
Depending on the time of year and the weather conditions, I will begin my session with a good quantity of bait, this will vary from 2/3kg if the conditions are not quite spot on (high pressure) or during the cooler parts of the year. When the weather is spot on, big low pressures during productive times of the year, I may introduce up to 5kg of mix to a spot initially and work it from there.
To some, this may sound like a lot of bait, but in relative terms to the stock of fish, it actually isn’t. I will then judge how much bait I need to top up with throughout the session depending on the action I receive, many anglers I see will put fresh bait over old bait even if no bites have materialised. In the past, I did top up with bait after every fish, but this year, I have topped up with slightly larger quantities when I have had a few bites off a spot. I often think that crashing large spombs over fish will scare them off, especially when they are still feeding in shallow water on bars or pronounced features.
In terms of how much bait I re- introduce after a few fish depends on the action I receive, but in general, I go for around 10 large spombs only when the action has died down. Over time you will get a feel for the best time to bait up following quick action. I always fish three rods tight over a bed of bait, which drastically increases the chances of getting a pickup when the fish move in and have a feed.
It also pays to use any line- indications or showing fish over the spot as a tell- tale sign that fish have been feeding in the area. You need to carefully watch your swim throughout the trip and guage if you should have had bites. On some venues, large groups of fish will easily clear out your baited area and you may not got a pick- up resulting in a bite. If this is the case, I would then also bait up to draw those fish back in to the area.
If you clearly have fish feeding over your spots but you are not getting bites, it may also pay to wind in and re-cast, as you just do not know if your rigs are not presented as they should be. On some occasions, i may do this without the need to reintroduce any bait, especially if i feel there may still be a quantity of bait still in the swim.
Most of these decisions will come with experience and learning to watch and understand how your swim is working...