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Fishing at a mussel farm - should you use mussels for bait?

We wanted to find out if mussels are the best bait to use at a mussel farm.

 

At low tide, mussels can often be found on the rocky shorelines near mussel farms.

 

It’s easier to process the mussels before you fish with them.

 

First, we deshelled all mussels and then put them in a jar with salt. 

Salt toughens them up and also preserves them. We kept them in the fridge overnight for extra freshness.

 

The next morning we went to the mussel farm. This particular mussel farm is very close to shore and easily reached by kayak and paddleboard.

 

Once we reached the mussel farm we started fishing with a two hook dropper rig and size 5 circle hooks. 

 

We were getting bites right away and started catching a whole lot of undersized snapper.

After a while, it got very tiring to catch and release the small fish and constantly rebaiting the hooks.

Using mussels for bait obviously worked well to catch a lot of fish, but we didn’t quite get the fish we wanted.

 

That’s when we decided to change our strategy and use lures.

Fishing with lures is generally easier, more economic and less hassle than bait fishing.

On top of that lures usually attract bigger fish. We decided to drift along the outside of the mussel farm.

 

Not long after we changed to our favourite lures we got our first decent snapper on a micro jig.

A few moments later Hyeshin got a really nice 45cm snapper on a soft bait. One more drift and another snapper was landed on the micro jig.

 

The lures we used were a z-man 5 inch paddle tail and a zest gan jig in green and gold.

 

In a very short time, we had 3 good sized snapper and decided to call it a day.

 

We thought mussels would be the best bait to use at a mussel farm.

 

But yet again lures outperformed bait by catching bigger fish with less hassle.

 

The mussels worked great at getting bites and catching fish but the fish were all small and it was more hassle than it’s worth.

 

The advantage of using mussels is that they are free and that fish love them. The disadvantage is that they take some effort to collect, process and fish with. They are great bait if you don’t have any lures at hand or as a backup bait if fishing is slow and lures don’t fish well on a particular day.


Check out our video of this little experiment here:



















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