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Gulp bait: Does it work better than live bait?

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Berkely Gulp bait. That stuff really work? If you were to fish this versus crappie minnow, who would catch more fish? I have a $20 bet that live bait will win. We will see. Fishing 3:30 - dusk on Thursday in the shallow warmer bays.

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id put my money on gulp (or any plastics), live bait is a waste of money this time of year

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I had a bet with my buddy this weekend when he was buying minnows and I said why you wasting your time and he said We will see who catches more.....Well after I started catching fish one after another and not having to rebait and just release the fish and catch another he abandodned the minnows and was going through my plastics and tying one on.......I think I was catching at a 7-1 on fish caught before he switched.....I never use live bait fishing crappies and Gulp Alive is very good

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Looks like I may lose $20. We used live bait and I outfished him last year both times. First time out I caught six, Fudd zero. Second time out I caught five, Fudd three.

Hope the crappies are in the shallows and stay there now. I hear the deeper bays they are still sitting on the deep weed lines but the shallow bays they should be in.

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Everytime out when I see live bait fisherman I've out fished them. On one recent outing I outfished the other people I saw like 5 or 6 fish to one. They were all using live minnows.

I don't even have live bait in the boat anymore when going for crappies, or any panfish for that matter. The gulp and powerbait work just as good if not better than live bait. And best of all, no maintenance needed!

I think in the end it all comes down to confidence. If you think you are not going to get a bite while using plastics, you probably won't.

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I have always done ok with live bait, but am heading towards using all plastics lately and doing better.

Do you folks have any preference to jigs or lures? Or bobbers with small hooks?

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I like live bait better myself. Until someone jumps in my boat and outfishes me with plastics, I'm going to use my crappie minnows, panfish leeches, worms, and waxies. BUT that's just me, a drop in the bucket probably.

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A lot of it probably has to do with the nature of the beasts. Since minnows are alive, they tend to be fished stationary under a bobber, in one place, without any movement. Because they aren't always active, this can create a sense of "non-appeal" to a fish. Have you ever dipped your hooked minnow into the water only to see it turn belly up or simply just not attempt to get away? Coupled with the lack of movement through the water, which normally isn't the case with an artificial presentation since it needs to be worked to create its desired effect, and you can get an advantage with plastics over live bait.

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I recently did the same thing except we were not betting. I had plastics and she had live. 11 to 2 in my favor. Before I left for the night she had about half of my jar of them. Luckily I had a new jar along so I left her with her own. A couple days later I stopped and talked to her and you know what, she was catching more fish using plastic than before.

I use the red waxies/asticots.

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I have dabbled with the Gulp line of products and have had limited success. The gulp Alive worked better for me than the standard gulp, but my tacklebox has a little funk to it now due to the terrible seal that the lids have on them. I am a true believer in plastics and will take a puddle jumper over a live minnow this time of year any day of the week.

CA

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gulp has its place sometimes, but last year i bought gulp leeches and a dozen real leeches and real were 3to1 should of got the pound as i usally do this was for walleye last opener.

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I've gone to just buying less live bait. When fishing is tough live bait always seems to outfish. When fish are cooperating, you run out of minnows quickly but doesn't matter since plastics seem to actually do better under those circumstances anyway.

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i would bet the 20 on plastic in the spring and fall and put the money on live bait during the summer and winter. i used 1 nonscented dont even know the name small tail last weekend and caught at least 100 fish off it. yes i saw minnows also working, but why bother. but this is spring and the fish are aggressive.

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So the shallow bay we will fish this afternoon is about eight feet max in some spots. We mainly get hits by the bridge pilons. I'll be throwing out a crappie minnow with a small split and a bobber, likely set for four feet or less. Crack a beer, chill out and wait.

My question is could you fish the Gulp alive minnow the same way, only twitch it often, and perhaps a slow pause - retrieve? I may give it a shot and hopefully we will have luck both ways!

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If fishing anything other than live bait, I ALWAYS keep my bait moving. Plastics and even the Gulp line of products in my opinion are almost useless without some sort of movement. Unless I am slip bobber fishing for walleyes, I rarely...If ever let the bobber just sit. Using a slow retrieve would be my fist way to target those fish. Good luck this afternoon.

CA

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Gulp waxies on tiny jigs works just fine even under bobbers for sunnies. For crappies it is hard to beat tubes and twisters by anything, minnows or gulp, but there the proper gulp will out fish minnows unless you insist on a bobber. Then you will get outfished by casters and jiggers virtually all the time regardless of the bait, unless you are casting and retrieving the bobber rig, then it is gulp over minnows except in rare occasions.

However, once in a while small shiners will outfish everything for bigger crappies, sometimes with a bonus walleye or largemouth. It depends on the minnows offered and the situation.

Day in day out for crappies go with the gulp or the plastics and put away the bobber and the minnow bucket. For sunfish keep a couple of "tightly closed" jars of Gulp waxies in a couple of colors, and then you won't have to stop for live bait to catch fish. I wouldn't put them in a tackle box though.

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So I take it you are just casting and retrieving the tubes and twisters??

I normally just use a minnow and bobber for crappies, but have started getting into the gulp and plastics, but haven't had much luck so far.

Maybe my jigs/lures aren't right or my presentation is off.

??

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Not at all. I use plastics, particularly power minnows and power tubes, under bobbers all the time. They are just as effective as live minnows. That's how I've got the majority of my fish this spring. It depends on the mood of the fish, but I will ususally keep the bait moving. I will twitch/jig it, let it sit for 5-10 seconds, and repeat until I get close to the boat.

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Well the evening was not ideal. Buddy Fudd told me he had put on a new starter the night before and we were good to go. However before we left the boat would not start. We messed around with the spark plugs for a good hour before it fired. Then we launched the boat and again the motor would not start. Fudd forgot the anchor anyway. We shore fished a bit but no bites. I wanted to shore fish the bay of interest but Fudd wanted to go home.

I had $8 worth of crappie minnows and took off to my favorite bay from shore. I fished from 6:30 - 9:00. I had so many hits. Each time I would let the crappie run with it, pull up slack, and then set the hook but the minnow kept popping out. Any tips? Do I need to do multiple twitches set the hook when the crappie is running with? Or is a "one sweep" hook set generally good enough? I did catch a few crappies and a few bigger sunnies plus a nice bass. The few that I briefly had on I could tell were huge. I think a big part of my problem was the fish were biting in deeper water (6') closer to the pilons which was a long cast. From that distance, it is even harder to set the hook.

So gulp versus minnows I do not have an answer for you yet. My buddy Fudd needs to screw his head on tighter. I made a checklist for him on Excel that I hope will help. We will try again next Thursday -- assuming he can get his boat started. Dude kept telling me "This is too much, I cannot handle the pressure." I only require a rowboat and an anchor to be honest. This bay is shallow for the most part. Only one boat in the bay and these guys had a great time hauling in crappies.

I would say they are still coming in. I do not think the crappies were in full swing. This weekend and next week should be perfect.

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Couldn't believe it but the gulp/jig out fished minnow/jig 3-1 last night, I think it was the 2" minnow, what types of gulp have you been using?

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"Just" casting is what I normally do. I will also jig vertically with a jig and tube and that can take a lot of crappies if you can position yourself over them without spooking the school.

But also see Drewski's comments.

The "bobber and fly" presentation allows for longer casting distance and more precise depth control, especially on the slowest and subtlest of retrieves to suspended fish or over the tops of weedbeds and snags, but I don't always feel the need for the extra rigging. A lot of my crappies come off the bottom, too; so it doesn't always fit my presentations as well as it does for those who concentrate more on suspended fish.

There is more to it than "just" casting and retrieving, one may have to work through a dozen or more patterns and variations to find what clicks for any particular day. Usually not all the way through, though, and then the fishing can get hot real quick.

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I have had extremely good luck with both gulp alive and live bait for crappies and for walleyes. Last week i caught 20 crappies and 25 bass with live bait and the next day i used gulp and caught 35 crappies and 20 bass all in a short period of time But when i used the gulp i got bigger crappies. So i guess its a personnel preference, and it depends on weather conditions and what that fish wants on that certain day. i always carry gulp with just in case they dont want live bait.

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I have found that I get better hook up with a little movement. Also, for years I used my walleye rod for crappies and had trouble while watching my buddy hook almost every one. I finally went with a very flexible ultralight and now I don't yank it out of their very soft mouths...hookups are very high.

...or, they were just little sunnies who are very good at stealing minnows...

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