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813basstard

Wider/fatter vs longer

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I know confidence/experience is the best lure but something I’ve noticed and have data on is this:

Caught more fish on a jig with paddle tail trailer than anything. But when I throw a jig with a craw trailer that’s shorter than the paddle tail, the quality of fish goes up. 

For a spinnerbait, when I throw double Colorado vs anything else (both the same weight) I catch bigger fish. 

So my question is, have any of you noticed that fatter more denser baits catch bigger fish then baits of the same weight but longer?

interested to see if anyone has experienced the same outcome

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Yes. It has mostly to do with the wake such baits create -how much water they move. 

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Bigger profile and vibration imitates a bigger prey item, attracting bigger fish.

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Yes - there's science to support it, though I would debate the wake/vibration theories 😉

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   Nope. I've found, I think, just the opposite. My 10" Rage Tail Anaconda catches me bigger fish than any shorter plastic lure.  There's one exception, though. In or at the edge of weeds, the big fatties and creatures are better. I only fish weeds in 2 lakes, though. As for the spinnerbaits, I've definitely noticed that a single Colorado blade, a real THUMPER of a blade, catches the biggest fish. And that's in lakes and rivers, both.   jj

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Wider/fatter vs longer

 

That's what she said! 🤣

 

I really never gave that much thought. After much trial and error, I know what works and what doesn't in the places that I fisg. My best guess is that it would have to do with a combination of factors including forage, water clarity, weeds and structure (fish sight lines) in that location, and more.

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48 minutes ago, 813basstard said:

I know confidence/experience is the best lure but something I’ve noticed and have data on is this:

Caught more fish on a jig with paddle tail trailer than anything. But when I throw a jig with a craw trailer that’s shorter than the paddle tail, the quality of fish goes up. 

For a spinnerbait, when I throw double Colorado vs anything else (both the same weight) I catch bigger fish. 

So my question is, have any of you noticed that fatter more denser baits catch bigger fish then baits of the same weight but longer?

interested to see if anyone has experienced the same outcome

Yes and no. I don't think larger baits catch bigger fish as much as they deter smaller ones, so it will appear that they do, or you will actually catch the bigger fish by not being interrupted or distracted by the smaller ones, but that is the exception, cause except for some specific times and conditions, most don't trget a hodge podge of fish swimming together like in a fishing video game. Of course there are times when fish both big and small will key in on bigger baits, and that is relative, so that's the yes part. AND there are times when fish key on smaller baits, so there is that. 

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It depends on the prey type the bass are targeting and the seasonal period.

9" to 13" straight tail soft plastic worms are the longest skinny lures I use, they don't move much water in fact they are stealthy crawling along the bottom. Big worms catch big bass, unless you are bed fishing then it's nearly impossible to get a hook set.

Hair jigs with pork rind trailers are another example of smaller size more stealthy lure. Pork rind trailers have life like movements but don't vibrate or move much water, similar to a Senko, and they catch big bass. Jigs with double vibrating tails tend to catch more bass of all sizes, but only a few giant bass.

Glide baits like S-Wavers are another example of longer smaller profile lures that don't' vibrate or displace a lot of water and catch big bass.

Shorter fatter Matt lures Hard gill or Black Dog wooden shell Cracker are multi joint Swimbaits that more water then single jointed glide baits and they catch big bass, especially during the spawn cycles.

Rats are longer thinner wake baits that tend to move a lot water, no vibration and they catch big bass.

Big deep diving lures are in the short fat vibrating lures that move a lot of water and they bass of all sizes.

The theme is use lures that represent what the big bass are hunting and your odds go way up.

As soon as someone figures out bass fishing scientifically I am all in, until then it's trail and error for me.

Tom

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3 hours ago, Team9nine said:

Yes - there's science to support it, though I would debate the wake/vibration theories 😉

Please do! Inquiring minds...

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I remember Doug Hannon making an opposite claim . He said double digit bass prefer long  thin lures and used floating minnow baits a lot .  

 

Im   in neither camp .

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2 hours ago, Paul Roberts said:

Please do! Inquiring minds...

In theory, if larger lures were better in murky water, then you would think diet studies would bear this out by bass, and other species in general, showing preferential targeting of larger prey sizes because of being easier to detect and possibly increased reactive distance. Instead, most studies I've seen generally suggest that predators become less discerning and mostly non-discriminatory in prey size (possible exception for the smallest sizes of prey), likely because they lose the vision advantage that offered size selectivity and increased reaction distance in the first place. In some cases, certain types of prey are even largely ignored (or at least minimally preferred) regardless of size in turbid environments.

 

There's probably a component of baseline turbidity involved, also. Bass from more turbid environments might react more positively to larger prey, whereas bass accustomed to usually clear water might not. Anecdotally, Rick Clunn has suggested that on lakes that normally are clear but then mud up, a great deal of sound or water displacement by the lure can actually scare more bass than it will attract. In those cases, he prefers something like a fat worm or bulky jig as opposed to large rattling crankbaits or spinnerbaits with oversized blades.

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I find in very clear water,where I have bass fished most of my life,  size and color matters, even in total darkness. Lakes that have poor water clarity tend to be poor night fishing lakes. 

A jig isn't a big bulky lure, it's less than 3" long less the trailer. The trailer increases it's size. Jigs are excellent bass lures when combined with a trailer so the trailer becomes the component bass target, the jig and skirt adds life like suttle movements. Jigs fall somewhere inbetween short and fat or long and skinny depending on the trailer.

I use a jig for reference of a lure that works under all conditions, good or poor water clarity, day or night, with or without rattles or vibrating appendages.

If bass couldn't find stealthy prey like minnows or crawdads trying to hide from them they would starve. Bass definately can find jigs!

Tom

 

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Ok, got some good takes here. Old man I used to fish with said animals (not just fish) measure size by density instead of length (height for humans). Didn’t think to much of it until we went to the zoo and it dawned on me how wide REAL animals are. Tigers, buffalos, gorillas etc..May be on to something..

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1 hour ago, WRB said:

I find in very clear water,where I have bass fished most of my life,  size and color matters, even in total darkness. Lakes that have poor water clarity tend to be poor night fishing lakes. 

A jig isn't a big bulky lure, it's less than 3" long less the trailer. The trailer increases it's size. Jigs are excellent bass lures when combined with a trailer so the trailer becomes the component bass target, the jig and skirt adds life like suttle movements. Jigs fall somewhere inbetween short and fat or long and skinny depending on the trailer.

I use a jig for reference of a lure that works under all conditions, good or poor water clarity, day or night, with or without rattles or vibrating appendages.

 

If bass couldn't find stealthy prey like minnows or crawdads trying to hide from them they would starve. Bass definately can find jigs!

 

Tom

 

I don't think anyone is questioning whether bass can find any kind of prey (or bait) in the lakes they inhabit. Nothing moves in the water without a bass knowing about it, at least at close range. Instead, the question is one of, do they (bigger bass) prefer or are they more likely to be caught by someone using larger and/or oversized presentations ("fatter" because they move more water or create a bigger disturbance) than a longer but thinner lure of approx same weight. I would argue, they do attract bigger bass, but not because of displacement.

 

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That was exactly my point, big noisy lures catch some bass, smaller or longer stealthy lures catch the majority of bass, especially larger adult size bass. I make the argument the opposite is true, smaller or longer lures are more effective then shorter fatter noisy lures overall. It's easy to argue that jigs are the most effective big bass lure and soft plastic worms being the most effective overall bass lure.

My reasoning is very active bass chase down and strike shorter fatter noisy lures like buzz baits, crankbaits, spinnerbaits, etc., while less active bass strike lures moving slower in a more natural manner. Bass are only very active a low percentage of the time, your odds are far better trying to catch active or less active bass and the smaller longer lures appeal more to those bass, IMO.

This is a matter of opinion based on my experience, no scientific proof.

Tom

 

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6 hours ago, WRB said:

That was exactly my point, big noisy lures catch some bass, smaller or longer stealthy lures catch the majority of bass, especially larger adult size bass. I make the argument the opposite is true, smaller or longer lures are more effective then shorter fatter noisy lures overall. It's easy to argue that jigs are the most effective big bass lure and soft plastic worms being the most effective overall bass lure.

My reasoning is very active bass chase down and strike shorter fatter noisy lures like buzz baits, crankbaits, spinnerbaits, etc., while less active bass strike lures moving slower in a more natural manner. Bass are only very active a low percentage of the time, your odds are far better trying to catch active or less active bass and the smaller longer lures appeal more to those bass, IMO.

This is a matter of opinion based on my experience, no scientific proof.

Tom

 

 

Both stealth and noise catch a lot of big bass and lots of them. Bass have to know how much energy to expend in order to catch the bait or meal they're after. Jigs and worms are effective for both large and small bc they can't escape big or small bass!! Bass recognize craws as easy targets and nutrient dense. Worms the same way as well. Now I think you'd agree that big bass are more fat than muscle making it more difficult for them to chase buzz spinnerbaits etc. Probably them failing to catch these faster moving baits have turned them off to them imo doesn't mean big bass won't hit them. Occurring a food deficit turns them off from this presentation. My home state is MO state record was off a black spinnerbait. You'll notice most big bass on spinnerbaits are Colorado blade bc they love slow, yes the thump, but fat fish and ppl aren't running to get their food!!

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^^

very good points. Made sense to me at least 

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I have to fish muddy water or stay home . The lures dont have to be bigger ,  flashier , noisier ...  A little beetle spin will get clobbered  . I have these little swim baits with Bill Dances name on it , they have rattling eyes . The lure doesnt have much action and the rattles dont make much noise but the bass come charging at it , even though they cant see it until they are right on it .  A 1/8th ounce Rattle Trap is a great lure in muddy to murky water .

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I always start off bigger and if nothing takes it, I down size. I also consider shape when the crank bite should be on, but I'm not getting strikes. I've learned that when I step up to a wider/fatter profile, or vice versa, the change triggers bites.

 

"Just when I think I know everything about Micropterus salmoides, they throw me a curve ball." - Me

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I think bait placement is more key than anything. Drag a  small worm or buzzbait right in front of a big one and if its hungry, it will hit it. 

 

That's my train of thought. It may not chase a bait big or small, but if it comes in striking range that just makes an easy meal in a bass mind I think. 

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It seems like there is a variety of things going on here. 

21 hours ago, Bluebasser86 said:

Bigger profile and vibration imitates a bigger prey item, attracting bigger fish.

A lure can be “bigger” both visually and in vibration/displacement. A glidebait is quiet, but visually larger than most lures, a buzzbait is average size visually, but creates lots of displacement and vibration. 

21 hours ago, jimmyjoe said:

   Nope. I've found, I think, just the opposite. My 10" Rage Tail Anaconda catches me bigger fish than any shorter plastic lure.  There's one exception, though. In or at the edge of weeds, the big fatties and creatures are better. I only fish weeds in 2 lakes, though. As for the spinnerbaits, I've definitely noticed that a single Colorado blade, a real THUMPER of a blade, catches the biggest fish. And that's in lakes and rivers, both.   jj

Even though an anaconda is long and skinny, and creates less vibration and displacement, it still is a big lure. It’s may be smaller “vibrationally” but it is big visually.

21 hours ago, reason said:

Yes and no. I don't think larger baits catch bigger fish as much as they deter smaller ones, so it will appear that they do, or you will actually catch the bigger fish by not being interrupted or distracted by the smaller ones, but that is the exception, cause except for some specific times and conditions, most don't trget a hodge podge of fish swimming together like in a fishing video game. Of course there are times when fish both big and small will key in on bigger baits, and that is relative, so that's the yes part. AND there are times when fish key on smaller baits, so there is that. 

The big swimbait scene seems to have made it pretty clear that big lures catch bigger bass and more bigger bass. The big baits do deter small fish so they catch a lot less fish, but they do catch giants more often then the average person throwing a senko. Some of these guys have built there reputation on how many double digit bass they have caught and bring back livewells full of huge bass in just one day.

15 hours ago, Team9nine said:

In theory, if larger lures were better in murky water, then you would think diet studies would bear this out by bass, and other species in general, showing preferential targeting of larger prey sizes because of being easier to detect and possibly increased reactive distance. Instead, most studies I've seen generally suggest that predators become less discerning and mostly non-discriminatory in prey size (possible exception for the smallest sizes of prey), likely because they lose the vision advantage that offered size selectivity and increased reaction distance in the first place. In some cases, certain types of prey are even largely ignored (or at least minimally preferred) regardless of size in turbid environments.

I might be misunderstanding you, but it seems like bass having a large variety of food sizes in their stomach does not necessarily means they don’t prefer bigger prey. It might just mean in the muddy water they catch anything they can. They might still prefer larger pray and be drawn to larger lures with more “thump”

22 hours ago, 813basstard said:

I know confidence/experience is the best lure but something I’ve noticed and have data on is this:

Caught more fish on a jig with paddle tail trailer than anything. But when I throw a jig with a craw trailer that’s shorter than the paddle tail, the quality of fish goes up. 

For a spinnerbait, when I throw double Colorado vs anything else (both the same weight) I catch bigger fish. 

So my question is, have any of you noticed that fatter more denser baits catch bigger fish then baits of the same weight but longer?

interested to see if anyone has experienced the same outcome

Do you fish jigs with craws and jigs with paddle tails the same way? In my experience people generally fish jigs with paddle tails more like a swimjig and cover more water. On the other hand jigs with craws are often used more to pitch to specific pieces of cover. Could the difference in size bass you catch be more to do with using them differently. Big bass certainly prefer the best pieces of cover in the pond. 

13 hours ago, WRB said:

It's easy to argue that jigs are the most effective big bass lure

I agree jigs certainly are a good big bass lure. Although how much of that is due to the presentation itself and how much is due to the way they are fished? Jigs are textbook lures for pitching into thick cover and big bass usually get the best, nastiest cover in the lake. Is it the jig itself or is it the way jigs are fished? (I’m asking because I’m really not sure). 

6 hours ago, Tvm said:

 

Both stealth and noise catch a lot of big bass and lots of them. Bass have to know how much energy to expend in order to catch the bait or meal they're after. Jigs and worms are effective for both large and small bc they can't escape big or small bass!! Bass recognize craws as easy targets and nutrient dense. Worms the same way as well. Now I think you'd agree that big bass are more fat than muscle making it more difficult for them to chase buzz spinnerbaits etc. Probably them failing to catch these faster moving baits have turned them off to them imo doesn't mean big bass won't hit them. Occurring a food deficit turns them off from this presentation. My home state is MO state record was off a black spinnerbait. You'll notice most big bass on spinnerbaits are Colorado blade bc they love slow, yes the thump, but fat fish and ppl aren't running to get their food!!

I think the “unwilling to chase in order to conserve energy” is a bit overhyped. They still are predators. Buzzbaits are known to catch big bass. The lure that produced my PB and has produced the most big fish for me is a Whopper plopper with a steady retrieve. With noisy, fast moving lures, big bass don’t necessarily have to chase them down, they can hear them coming from a long way away and intercept them as the approach. Also, even the fastest moving lures are nowhere near as fast as both bass and baitfish can swim. Chasing a buzzbait is probably like a slow jog for a bass. 

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1 hour ago, FCPhil said:

I think the “unwilling to chase in order to conserve energy” is a bit overhyped. They still are predators. Buzzbaits are known to catch big bass. The lure that produced my PB and has produced the most big fish for me is a Whopper plopper with a steady retrieve. With noisy, fast moving lures, big bass don’t necessarily have to chase them down, they can hear them coming from a long way away and intercept them as the approach. Also, even the fastest moving lures are nowhere near as fast as both bass and baitfish can swim. Chasing a buzzbait is probably like a slow jog for a bass. 

if this was true you could use a top water and fast retrieves at low water temperatures 

 

theres no telling how far the bass traveled as well the assumption of it chasing the lure might be correct but id say it was a quick move like a lineman in football they make sprints not long runs

 

a fat bass cant move as quickly as a skinny bass of the same length  

 

i even said that the mo state record was caught with a spinnerbait... 

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Back on topic . A Bomber Long A Minnow caught my biggest limit ever and I think has averaged larger fish than any other lure I have used . Its a long skinny lure .

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A fat bass can't move as fast as a skinny....false. A fat bass is in prime physical condition where as a skinny bass is a starving bass in poor health. 

Don't make the mistake that fish and people have any similarities. A fast lean athletic person verses a slow out of condions fat person isn't the same as a fish.

Another factor to consider is fish can't deterime there own size verses the prey they target and often make a mistake trying to swallow something that is  too big.

Matching the hatch is actually matching the prey movement and coloration the bass are focused on at that moment, not necessarily the lure size as we are often told.

Adult size bass can fit nearly any size soft plastic lure we use for bass fishing into thier mouth, unless it's too wide. Width is what prevents a bass from swallowing prey, not necessarily length. A 1 lb bass can eat a 12 inch worm with ease but not a 5" bluegill.

Tom

 

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2 hours ago, FCPhil said:

I might be misunderstanding you, but it seems like bass having a large variety of food sizes in their stomach does not necessarily means they don’t prefer bigger prey. It might just mean in the muddy water they catch anything they can. They might still prefer larger pray and be drawn to larger lures with more “thump”

Your argument is totally plausible. The difficulty in proving it's vibration and larger water movement that makes big baits attractive is you need to eliminate vision to do it IMO. That isn't easy to do. A scenario of turbid water or night time/deep water where light is largely eliminated seems like the only viable option. To your point, maybe they do prefer larger items, but if they instead choose to eat whatever they can get in low visibility situations, I'd argue that supports my side of the discussion, that they only prefer big when they can SEE big - not when they can feel big.

 

This can be supported with existing studies. More specifically to the OPs original question/premise, I'd add this statement from the (Hambright, 1991) study: "The relationship between prey body depth and piscivore mouth width clearly sets constraints on maximum prey sizes that can be ingested by gapelimited piscivores. These two factors also may play an important role in the selection of prey by piscivores within the range of ingestible prey sizes. Because many factors that influence prey selection by piscivores may also be associated with prey body depth, it is impossible to assign a singular role to body depth. Nonetheless, my results suggest that body depth is more useful than the traditional measure of prey length as a common measure for prey size selection by gape-limited piscivores feeding on an array of deep-bodied and shallow-bodied species."

 

2 hours ago, FCPhil said:

I think the “unwilling to chase in order to conserve energy” is a bit overhyped. They still are predators.

I'd agree...B)

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