Pilchards for bait, on gang hooks, singles and halved
||Lets kick off this section with one of the most versatile fishing baits
available, the humble old pilchard. I don't know of a carnivorous fish that swims in the sea that
wouldn't pounce an oil filled fillet given the chance. They are also known as the sardine overseas and here when offered up for human consumption to make them sound somewhat more palatable. Most of the Australian stocks are sourced are South Australia and Western Australia, although cheaper and from what I have seen inferior quality pilchards are being brought in
from overseas. There seems to a cyclical crash in stocks caused by a virus here roughly every 5 to 10 years which decimates up to 90% stocks. So if you are into reincarnation don't even think about coming back as a pilly.
While there is a lot of information floating around about salting down
pilchards and using bait elastics to hold them on these things really are
unnecessary. If you have buy good quality pilchards, keep them near
frozen till use and hook them on well then there should be no need for
the above. Salting for me is only something I do when I know I am going
to be short on or have no ice available. However like everything try it
for yourself, if it works for you then go with it.
Apologies for the quality of the pilchards used in this, they were dug
from the deepest darkest depths of the bait freezer where they were intended
to finish their smelly lives as minced burley.
Fish bite targets - snipping the
tail, hitting the belly or head is the most common attacks
Where the fish hits the pilchard often identifies the probable species
and likely size of the fish
Whole pilchard on gang hooks side rigged
This is the standard way to put a pilchard on gang hooks and just
plain works. Tailor, mackerel, flathead, bream, sharks and a variety of
reef fish will all happily accept them presented this way.
Whole pilchard on ganged top rigged
A slight variation on the above which is slightly better suited to
cast and slow retrieve fishing styles. The fish sits somewhat more
naturally even if upside down and with the end part of the backbone
removed will even seem to swim a little.
Fishing baits and how to rig them
How to bait up a pilchard on gang hooks
Hooking pilchards on
single and snooded rigs