… continuing on from Part 2 of our Top 5 Snapper Lures, this part is from flathead king, Dayne ‘Little Boat, Big Dream’ Taylor.
1. Palms Slow Blatt
Where – Ideally I prefer to use them in 30 metres plus. But I have also had success in shallower waters casting them horizontally as shallow as 10 metres.
When – These lures are effective at all times of the day, for sure you will get an increase in action during peak bite periods like sunrise and sunset, as well as tide changes. But there really isn’t any right or wrong time to tie on a Slow Blatt. If you are marking bait balls on your sounder and there are fish around, you’ll get bit real soon!
How – Typically jigs are fished vertically (Up and Down), the Slow Blatt works just as the name suggests “Slow”, meaning they have a larger surface area, designed to fall and wobble with a wide action at a much slower pace than a more streamline skinny/long high speed jig. With the aid of a purpose deigned slow action jig rod and a low geared heavy duty reel (Available in Spin or Overhead) you drop the jig to bait or fish marked on your electronics. If it doesn’t get bit on the drop, begin slow erratic winds of the reel allowing time at the end of each crank for the rod to load up and flick your jig, then pause and wait for the jig to flutter back down and take up the slack line. repeat this process until your lure is clear of the bait or depth of the fish you are marking. And repeat this process, mixing up the speed of retrievals and length of pauses.
Why – The erratic dart off and slow fall replicates that of a fleeing/injured or dying bait. Triggering that perfect opportunity for Snapper to grab an easy feed.
Colours – Every colour in the range has produced for me. That being said, I definitely have my favourites the H-528 (Pink and Silver) is a personal favourite!
2. Berkley Gulp 5″ Jerk Shad
Where – Shallow Kelp Flats and Reef under 20 metres deep.
When – I usually target shallow areas during low light periods like early in the mornings and late in the evenings.
How – Using an electric motor or the wind for a stealth drift into the shallows. Using lightly weighted jig heads suited to the wind, tidal flow and depth conditions, I make long casts towards shallow bombies or weed patches searching for a big red lurking around feeding on bait like pilchards, crays and squid. Allow it to sink slowly, giving the lure a couple of nice big whips to bring it back up through the water column and begin to sink again.
Why – The smaller 5″ profile seems to be an easy target for Snapper of all size brackets to lock onto and eat. I’m not real sure if the smaller subtle presentation is not as intimidating in the shallow clear water or if it purely replicates the bait size typically found in closer shallow water… what ever it is, it works!
Colours – The infamous Nuclear Chicken is hard to go past for me, followed close by the Pearl White and Pink Shine in 2nd and 3rd.
3. Chasebait Ultimate Squid
Where – Anywhere from 5 metres right out to 80 metres deep.
When – Local to my home waters I prefer to use them late Winter into spring, this seems to be when the squid are more prolific and the Snapper move in to feed on them. That being said I a well presented bait at any time of the year is likely to be eaten.
How – In the deeper water I use very heavy weighted jig heads to get down in that water column to the fish, the extra weight also helps deal with the current and keeping contact with your lure. Then in the shallow water (20 metres or less) I do the complete opposite, I go for a lighter jig head weight to keep the lure floating around in the minimal current, presenting as a very close replica to a real life squid swimming mid water column.
Why – As mentioned earlier I like to replicate the bait in the area, and these are seriously life like and require minimal action by the angler to be effective. Often the best results come from casting it out behind you and leaving the rod engaged in the rod holder allowing the lure to drift and move as it pleases in the current.
Colours – My favourites are the realistic colours such as the Glow Ink, Crystal and Market Squid.
4. Berkley Gulp Nemesis
Where – 20 metres + deep.
When – I use this lure if the fish are hugging the bottom or sitting really deep and not lifting to feed.
How – Using a heavy jig head, I drop this lure directly below the boat to fish I am marking on the sounder, mixing up the retrieves with slow steady draws of the rod and then a free spool to make contact with the bottom again works a treat. I have also been known to slow roll them through a school of fish with great success also.
Why – The slimline profile along with the tail action at slow speed seems to be irresistible to these fish.
Colours – The Camo colour seems to be the #1 I always reach for in this soft bait. And on days its dark and miserable the White is great as well.
5. Samaki Vibelicious
Where – 5 to 30 metres.
When – I tend to target shallow areas during low light periods like early in the mornings and late in the evenings. And move deeper as the sun is higher in the sky.
How – Making big long casts towards likely Snapper haunts such as steep drop offs or bombies, kelp beds and bait schools. Allow the lure to free fall through the water column, then begin a retrieve of big long draws of the rod tip, and retrieving the slack line slowly whilst watching for the bite on the fall.
Why – There is nothing tastier to a snapper than a bait fish that has just been wounded. That vibe gets there attention on the lift and the sudden fall allows them to think they have to eat this bait before there mate does. Plus they come pre-rigged with premium hooks and split rings meaning they are good to go strait out of the packet!
Colours – Slimy is my favourite, followed close by the Yakka. No reason other than they look unreal.