Best Live Bait for Walleyes - East Tennessee Fishing

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Old 02-07-2011, 10:07 PM   #1 (permalink)
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These are some of my personal favorite live baits to catch walleyes. If you have a favorite live bait for walleyes please share it with us.

1) Night Crawler: Whether rigged on a harness (nightcrawler rig) or slow trolled with just a #4 hook & a split shot..one of my best!

2) Minnows: These can be either shad, alwive or a bait shop minnow. Rig it on a small jig & bounce it along the bottom.

3) Leeches: Not many people in this part of the country fish live leeches for walleyes. Leeches are GREAT but kinda hard to obtain.

I do not know of any local bait shops that sell them. Up North, every bait shop sales leeches for walleye fishing.

I have found the best way to get some big nice juicy leeches is to find a small burlap bag (cotten will work, but the leeches will not hold on as well to it). Fill the burlap bag with chicken or beef liver (the bloodier the better.) Tie a string to the bag and toss it into a stagnant cow or farm pond and leave it over night. When you pull it in the next day, pull off the leeches and put them in a minnow bucket filled with water.

Leechs are like minnows, keep the water fresh and the water cool.
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Old 02-08-2011, 08:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Good info Rick



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Old 02-08-2011, 08:37 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Great info Rick .....

Thank you for sharing.



Rich
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Old 02-10-2011, 03:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Great info rick. Im so glad you addressed the leeches. I have been reading that everybody up north uses them and they work great. I didn't know if they were effective here..thx. I've also been reading about redtail chubs. Have you used them and are they same as creek chubs you can trap? And while we are on the subject of bait, have you tried gulp alive nightcrawlers minnows or leeches, natural or chartruese color ??? I have a bunch more walleye questions for you...I'll try not to bombard you all at once so I'll just make another post. Thanks so much for all your informative posts. Always love your reads. Keep em coming, I never get tired of learning about walleye.
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Old 02-11-2011, 12:38 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Regarding redtail chubs...I personally have never used them.

I have a friend of mine that fishes for walleye on cherokee (river area) and he swears by the minnow chubs he seins from the creek near his home.

I'm not sure if they are redtails, but some of the minnows have a red or orange tint (color) to them and the walleyes prefer them expecially in dingy or stained water.

Perhaps the walleyes can see these better.......not sure.

I also know a couple of guys that fish for sauger on Douglas (river area) usally from Nina Creek up to 25E.

They use home seined minnows. They (tip them) onto a 3/8 oz feather jig and bounce them thru the shoals.

They seem to take their share of the walleye & sauger when they are bitting!

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Old 02-11-2011, 12:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seaweed sally View Post
Great info rick. Im so glad you addressed the leeches. I have been reading that everybody up north uses them and they work great. I didn't know if they were effective here..thx. I've also been reading about redtail chubs. Have you used them and are they same as creek chubs you can trap? And while we are on the subject of bait, have you tried gulp alive nightcrawlers minnows or leeches, natural or chartruese color ??? I have a bunch more walleye questions for you...I'll try not to bombard you all at once so I'll just make another post. Thanks so much for all your informative posts. Always love your reads. Keep em coming, I never get tired of learning about walleye.


Regarding Berkley Gulp / Power Worms:

When I use a nightcrawler rig (spinner rig) for walleyes I PREFER Berkley Gulp nightcrawlers or Berkley Power nightcrawler over real nightcrawlers because they stay on the hook better and catch more fish than real nightcrawlers. I DO shorten them to only 3 or 4" long to prevent walleyes from grabbing the tail & not taking the hook.





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Old 02-11-2011, 02:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks for your great reply Rick. Do you use crawler harnesses in the winter? I use those northland blade too in the summer...I think they're great. Do you ever use a float bead with yours? Thx again for all your help, I deeply appreciated it.
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Old 02-12-2011, 03:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by seaweed sally View Post
Thanks for your great reply Rick. Do you use crawler harnesses in the winter? I use those northland blade too in the summer...I think they're great. Do you ever use a float bead with yours? Thx again for all your help, I deeply appreciated it.
When the water is COLD like it is now 40 to 55 degrees, I use the crawler harness. I also slow my troliing speed to about 1/2 mph to 3/4 mph.

I prefer a crawler harness with a float bead because it keeps it off the bottom better at the slower trolling speed.

WATCH OUT !!! At the slower trolling speed I tend to latch onto really BIG CATS...I about had a rod jerked from my hand early last March by a 48 lb blue cat. They love them crawler rigs!
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Old 02-13-2011, 12:58 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Maybe we have been trolling too fast with the crawler harnesses . We've been using 40 hp main motor. Also, our electronics are about as good as throwing a rock tided to a rope over board and waiting for it to hit the bottom. We've had no idea how fast we troll, which might explain why we do best with them in summer when the food chain is really crankin. I'm trying to save some money to buy a new fishfinder but you know how that goes. And wow, that catfish. You probably had to ice your shoulder that night.
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Old 02-13-2011, 01:06 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by seaweed sally View Post
Maybe we have been trolling too fast with the crawler harnesses . We've been using 40 hp main motor. Also, our electronics are about as good as throwing a rock tided to a rope over board and waiting for it to hit the bottom. We've had no idea how fast we troll, which might explain why we do best with them in summer when the food chain is really crankin. I'm trying to save some money to buy a new fishfinder but you know how that goes. And wow, that catfish. You probably had to ice your shoulder that night.
We catch a few catfish almost every trip trolling the crawler harness. (I guess it it because the catfish are feeding on the same forage bait as the walleyes) but if the waters cooler and we slow down, you catch alot more catfish for some reason.
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