Groundbait help

The Landlord

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I hardly ever use groundbait, whilst float fishing. No rhyme & reason for it but I've had this fear built into me that it'll ruin your swim, especially in winter. I think it goes back to our team skipper telling me this during winter league matches, many years ago.
At the moment, I'm fishing club waters (well stocked ponds with mixed species) and mainly using maggots to guarantee some bites. Is it worth starting off with some groundbait (and if so, how much?) or waiting to see if there are fish about before using some? I'm always frightened of overfeeding in winter.
 

OldTaff

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I’ve used groundbait throughout the year for my float fishing on stillwaters (where allowed) - many mixes contain very little feed value but can be an excellent carrier for liquid attractants.

On my old club lake for targeting silvers I would use Sensas black lake & Gros Gardons (75:25 ratio) then bang in Gardons liquid - the smell was wonderful.

Small amounts of groundbait were the key for me - start with 2 tangerine sized balls each containing half a dozen hook offerings then fish for half an hour to see how the fish are responding, if it’s positive then maybe top up with a ping pong ball sized offering with the same amount of loosefed.

There is no hard and fast rule I found - one day it would result in constant activity and on another you’d scrape a handful of bites but that’s the challenge of winter fishing.


Karl
 

Zerkalo

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I have heard that groundbait is not as effective in winter but that goes against what I do. I fish a groundbait feeder with 50/50 Sonubaits Fishmeal and Black Lake, mixed with micro pellets. What I found effected my catch rate more was when I used 4mm pellets, was a lot slower than using micros. But then again I fish heavily stocked commercials in winter and feel I can still throw a bit of bait at them, it might be different on a club lake. I also feed a similar mix of groundbait when float fishing in winter.
 

The Landlord

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What are you fishing for as in target species?
Anything that swims, mate. The ponds contain everything going. It's mainly roach coming out at the moment and sometimes the odd carp will make an appearance. Had a surprise tench yesterday!
 

gingert76

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can definitely use groundbait in the winter and i have had some great results but definitely err on the side of caution, consider the darker colours and consider the food content in the groundbait and particle size. Usually feed a bit of groundbait mixed with soil or leam as well to ensure its not too much. Definitely depends on venue and/or a bit of trial and error to see what works but groundbait is not a complete no no
 
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JLK

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Depends on what you are fishing for tbh but if you are wanting to catch everything you could employ the dump and hope method on one line only as a proper positive line. Winter or not. It works on well stocked carpy venue's.

Usually entails mixing up about 2/3kg of ground bait to a really over wet consistency.
Basically you find the deepest part of the peg and put 3 overwet balls in using the largest of the grey Preston cupping pots.
In the middle of these balls put chopped worm/dead reds
You leave this feed alone for 60 mins or until you start to see fizzing in the peg. Then start fishing over it with two full worms and a couple of dead reds or 1 full worm 3 dead reds etc.
Then you feed another ball over the top every 20 mins.
Lay the rig over depth by anywhere up to 12 inches to minimise foul hooking.
After hooking the worms, slap your rig on the surface in front of you a couple of times to stun the worms before you ship out. Stops them moving and masking the hook point.
 

The Landlord

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Cheers for the tips so far, chaps. Very helpful.
I need to stop being so negative.
 

gingert76

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nothing wrong with being negative as you cant take it out once its in lol, look at jamie and how he starts his matches, always softly softly, good luck
 

JLK

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Another method is to cad pot dead pinkies in slop (using the same groundbait of your choice) everytime you ship out and fish either double pinkie or a few dead reds on the hook.

I can feed just as heavy in winter as I do summer on certain venue's as I find that as a species turn off (carp) others switch on. (Skimmers/Roach) and if you don't feed enough they will move to the next person who is.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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Just make sure groundbait is allowed. Too much in the wrong type of stillwater and the water quality can be affected hence it is banned in some places.
 

rudd

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Use low feed groundbait and give it a good sieve and riddling.
If they are having it just feed same sized nuggets with same amount of feed but more often.
Be aware that some species on some venues can spook off groundbait falling on top of them.
 

Northantslad

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A nugget over the line as a starter and take from there won't hurt. If the fish start to get keen and come up, then play to it by compressing the nuggets a little less and run through the riddle again.

May be a sign of how little i understand about groundbait types, and i don't use alot, but how you prep it and then deliver it may be is more important than what's in it perhaps. To the point of keeping it simple, the only commercial groundbait i use for everything (method, pole as a ball/nugget or lose) is any green method mix i can find and a bag of swimstim mixed dry in a bucket and just grab what i need. Mixed night before if i want a dense heavy mix, on the bank if not.
 
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endpeg

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I will always feed groundbait on one or more line in Winter when fishing for silvers.
Usually fishmeal for Skimmers and cereal /leam for Roach.
I always have a loose fed Hemp and Caster line too!
 

OldTaff

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another big bag of decent sized snotties reported from the football ground stretch

I saw - can’t find time to get on it though, already planned to fish Neville Park tomorrow and meeting up with another maggot drowner (socially distanced) and work scheduled the next 2 Saturdays
 

PureGenius

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Hi Landlord,
I don't post often (I need to change that), but thought I might with this thread...
I've always fished groundbait! and have total confidence in doing so.
Give it a go and don't be worried... I started fishing down the cut when I was younger and always used a mix to carry my casters, and balled it in too, this was when I fished a 6m tele pole to hand so i could swing the rig under the far bank trees... I always pulled some good bream out. I think that mix went half bag supercup red, same of brown crumb and a qt of Magic.

More recent, when I can get out, it's been Barbel fishing so bait dropper of pellet or if I'm down the Trent then fishy groundbait to plug the feeder.

However, last Sunday I needed to get out, so went out to find the silvers on my local River Calder (Yorkshire). Ordered some Click n Collect bait from Bobco (what a service that was (y)(y)), and part of that order was a 2kg bag of what I thought would be a dark groundbait... website said VDE Supercrack Roach. I thought it was a spelling mistake and it was meant to be Superblack, however...
DSC_0540[1].JPG

Brown it was... oh well... mixed the lot, neat and on the heavy side as the swim is about 12ft deep, added, i'd say 4 hand fulls of caster, same with hemp and 2 of squatt.
Balled 6 and potted 2 slightly lighter squeezed on the pole line and let that settle while I cast a groundbait feeder out to mid river, using the same mix.
Bites from the off... fished the feeder for half hour then went on the pole.
When the pole started to go quiet I balled another 3 on that line and went back on feeder for half hour, then switched back to the pole.
Caught all day, all roach, no perch or pike trouble either. It's been that long since I fished like this, I really enjoyed it and have ordered some different hooks (Colmic B957, thanks Nige the matchman for the recommendation) so I don't bump as many. Hope they work.
Used all 2kg of groundbait through the day and didn't loose feed due to the depth, wanted to make sure it was all on the deck in my area.

Catch for the day about 6lb, sorry I ain't no matchman so didn't know how many fish I had caught, need a clicker for that, heard 1 guy walk past from upstream saying to his mate he had 74 dace.

DSC_0550[1].JPG

Can't wait to get back out. Tight lines all, Stay Safe and give the Groundbait a go!

Martin
 
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