Why Use Particle Baits for Carp Fishing?
Carp fishing bait can be expensive. I can go through 15-20 lbs of bait on a heavy day of fishing. And I go carp fishing about three times a week, so you can do the math. Considering that I am a massive tackle tart I would rather spend my money on shiny gadgets than spend it on something that I am going to throw into the water.
Between my aversion to spending money on bait and the fact that importing boilies to the United States is expensive, I am a big fan of making my own carp baits. Far-and-away my favorite carp baits to make and the cheapest baits to make are particle baits.
Carp fishing particle baits are mixtures of seeds, grains, pellets, ground up boilies or animal feed.You throw several handfuls of particle bait into the area where you are fishing and then put several larger particles on you hook as a hook-bait.
The idea behind particle baits is that the small little particles of bait take more time to eat. The carp have to take more time grazing in your fishing spot while they try to gather up all the food and fill their bellies. This means that the carp come into your fishing spot and stay there longer sucking up the freebie particle bait until you can catch them all.
The larger grains are often more attractant and desirable to carp but the smaller grains take more time to eat and don’t fill the carp up to fast. A combination of large and small grains is often best. The larger grains get eaten first and help produce quick bites, then the carp stay trying to suck up the small stuff.
A Super Cheap Carp Fishing Particle Bait
My favorite particle bait consists of pidgeon feed, white millet, hemp seed, barely or whole oats, and feed corn. A 40 lb bag of pigeon feed costs about $14. A 20 lb bag of white millet is about $15. Feed Corn is about $12 for a 50 lb bag. 50 lb bags of barely and whole oats can be bought for under $20. And all of these can be bought at local feed stores. Hemp seed in about $.50 a pound and can be bought from some US based online carp fishing supply shops.
All of these various particle feeds are purchased by their dry weight. So a 50lb bag of feed corn makes about 200 lbs of wet bait. So for about $100 I can buy enough bait to make hundreds of pounds of carp fishing bait. Enough to last me 1-2 years of heavy carp fishing.
How to Prepare Particle Bait for Carp Fishing
Dry grains and seed and feed are all prepared the same way. You soak them in water and then boil them until they are fully expanded and soft. Typically I soak my particle baits for 8-12 hours. Various grains take more or less time to cook. Corn takes several hours in my 3 gallon kettle. Smaller seeds like hemp seed and white millet take only 30 minutes. I tend to cook all my grains together except for the corn, which I cook separate and then combined afterwards.
Here is a great video on how to make a super cheap and very effective particle bait for carp.
Preserving Particle Baits.
Ok, once you have made you particle bait and it is all boilied it will mold and rot if you leave it out for more than about 5 days (depending on temperature). However, if you put it in the refrigerator is will last months. Bags of particle bait can be frozen and will last for a very long time.
How to Chum with Particle Baits.
My favorite method for chumming with particle baits is a spod or spomb. Mixing small grains with large grains will help your particle bait fall out of the spod easily. Spoding just corn or just any one grain can often result in about 1/4 of the spod being full when you reel it in. Sling shots (catapults), throwing sticks, bait boats, pack baits or margin poles are all awesome methods for chumming as well.
However, you decide to chum, the key is to chum the right amount into your spot and then keep the food coming. Carp fishing is like hosting a party, if your run out of food, everyone goes home. You don’t want to over feed the carp or drown your hook bait in freebies but you never ever want the carp to eat everything or they will leave.
I tend to put out 10 to 15 spod fulls of bait out and then replenish with about 3-5 spod fulls after each fish. Here is a video of the results of an effective particle bait spodding campaign