22 April, 2021 |9 Comments
Paul Garner’s Method Feeder Bait Tips
Angling Times’ Bait Clinic specialist, Dr Paul Garner shares his expert advice on what baits to use when Method feeder fishing, depending on the time of year…
I love the simplicity of Method feeder fishing and can honestly say that it has revolutionised my fishing, not just for carp, but for bream, tench and crucian carp too. The little pile of feed with the hookbait in the centre is just right for quick bites at this time of the year.
A question that I get asked regularly is which bait is best for the Method, and the fact is that I often use a combination of both micro pellets and groundbait right through the year, as the two complement each other perfectly. By adjusting the ratio of the pellets and groundbait you can control the amount of feed and attraction introduced, tailoring your feed to the conditions on the day.
Groundbait to Pellets
The colder the water the more likely I am to use groundbait on the Method. My aim being to limit the amount of bait that I am putting in that will fill the fish up. With the carp being less active in the colder water there is enough attraction in the fine groundbait to keep them interested without filling them up. As the water warms though they want food, and that means pellets. These don’t have to be larger 6mm baits, but a feeder loaded with micros will keep them coming back for more.
I let the conditions on the day influence my bait mix. Bright frosty conditions are likely to see the fishing being tougher, so I increase the percentage of groundbait. Cloudy, warm weather will encourage the fish to feed, and so I step up the pellets. By keeping the two baits separate and only mixing them together as I go along I can adjust the feed and hopefully keep the bites coming.
Light to Dark
My Method hookbaits also change depending upon the conditions and the time of the year. Right now bright wafters (Wowsers) are my first choice as they stand out really well and attract the attention of any browsing carp. Colour makes more of a difference in the cold, because the water is clearer and the fish are feeding more slowly and deliberately.
As the water warms I switch to hard pellets and mini boilies, which tend to be darker in colour. I like a heavier bait when the fish are feeding more confidently as they tend to create a lot of wash as they move around. I don’t think the carp are picking out individual baits when feeding like this, they are just inhaling whatever is in front of them.
One of the great benefits of the Method feeder is that it is such a simple, yet effective way of fishing, so don’t get too picky over what bait to use. Use my advice simply as a guide and you won’t go far wrong, and don’t be afraid to experiment to find what works best for you.
QUICK TIP – Get the feed down to the lake bed
Push your bait onto the feeder quite firmly, especially when fishing in deeper water.
TEN MINUTE MAKE – Two-Part Method Mix
I normally use a combination of micro pellets and groundbait on my Method feeder. Here is how to prepare the two parts separately before mixing them together in the right ratio.
- Add a teaspoonful of Dynamite’s Fish Gutz to a pint of water. I like to do this the evening before fishing and use water from the garden water butt, rather than chlorinated water from the tap.
- Pour half a bag of 2mm coarse pellets into a bait tub that has a sealed lid.
- Completely cover the 2mm pellets with water and soak them for two minutes.
- Drain off as much of the water as you can. Put the lid on the container and give it a good shake. Keep shaking it every few minutes to evenly distribute the water.
- Add half a teaspoonful of red dye if you want a darker pellet feed.
- After about ten minutes most of the liquid should have been absorbed. By the morning the pellets will be soft right the way through, perfect for the Method feeder.
- Slowly add water to the dry groundbait, mixing constantly to help avoid lumps forming. Stop when the groundbait starts to bind together when squeezed.
- After ten minutes add a little extra liquid and keep mixing to bring the groundbait to the right consistency.