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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Default Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    I bought a second hand book yesterday "Angling from the fishes' point of view" by Barry Atkinson written in 1961. Interesting book with chapters on watermanship, the element, the environment, physiology, taste and smell etc.
    In it is one tip for spraying pilchard oil on lures. The idea is fish chase lures and somethings not
    quite right and the fish gets frightened and does not take the lure. I have seen this many times, watched a fish chase my lure and not actually take it or ducking away at the last moment. His theory is if it smells natural this will overcome the fishes fear. He also includes spraying it on flies as well; does this make sense ?
    Another tip was liver as an excellent bait for mullet, must try that sometime.

    There was a book "Bream Fishing" by John Wilson in another shop for £30! I opted for this one for £4 and it was in excellent nick but minus the cover.

  2. #2
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    Oct 2006
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    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    The trouble with stuff like pilchard oil etc is that the bloody stuff gets everywhere. I tried it on my deadbaits one time but I found it impossible to keep the stuff off my gear and me. I absolutely stank at the end of the day...moreso than usual and so did the car. I might have noticed a difference over time but it was just too messy to keep and apply. Binned it.

    I know less than nowt about lure fishing so eho knows ? I wouldnt sully my flies with the stuff though. If they dont want them as they are they can buqqer off. Im not having my fly boxes reeking of rancid pilchards.
    Last edited by S-Kippy; 10-01-2019 at 15:24.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    Quote Originally Posted by S-Kippy View Post
    The trouble with stuff like pilchard oil etc is that the bloody stuff gets everywhere. I tried it on my deadbaits one time but I found it impossible to keep the stuff off my gear and me. I absolutely stank at the end of the day...moreso than usual and so did the car. I might have noticed a difference over time but it was just too messy to keep and apply. Binned it.

    I know less than nowt about lure fishing so eho knows ? I wouldnt sully my flies with the stuff though. If they dont want them as they are they can buqqer off. Im not having my fly boxes reeking of rancid pilchards.
    7
    your right, didn't think of that, it does stink, maybe give it a miss.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    Quote Originally Posted by markg View Post
    7
    your right, didn't think of that, it does stink, maybe give it a miss.
    Trust me...no matter how careful you are with the stuff you and your gear end up covered in it and whereas YOU can have a nice shower your rod and reel handles, bags etc stink to high heaven for evermore. I cannot be doing with a full NBC decontamination process every time out. Its not like boilie dip or flavourings which are terribly well behaved by comparison

  5. #5

    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    Quote Originally Posted by S-Kippy View Post
    Trust me...no matter how careful you are with the stuff you and your gear end up covered in it and whereas YOU can have a nice shower your rod and reel handles, bags etc stink to high heaven for evermore. I cannot be doing with a full NBC decontamination process every time out. Its not like boilie dip or flavourings which are terribly well behaved by comparison
    Your dead right!

    My mate keeps his 'bonio' carp flies in a pot of the stuff because he reckons they work better....from what I've seen the only difference it makes is a rank smell..

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Leeds
    Posts
    639

    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    Quote Originally Posted by markg View Post
    I bought a second hand book yesterday "Angling from the fishes' point of view" by Barry Atkinson written in 1961. Interesting book with chapters on watermanship, the element, the environment, physiology, taste and smell etc.
    In it is one tip for spraying pilchard oil on lures. The idea is fish chase lures and somethings not
    quite right and the fish gets frightened and does not take the lure. I have seen this many times, watched a fish chase my lure and not actually take it or ducking away at the last moment. His theory is if it smells natural this will overcome the fishes fear. He also includes spraying it on flies as well; does this make sense ?
    Another tip was liver as an excellent bait for mullet, must try that sometime.

    There was a book "Bream Fishing" by John Wilson in another shop for £30! I opted for this one for £4 and it was in excellent nick but minus the cover.
    I remember the book by Barry Atkinson. In it, didn't he say that floats should be painted a pale grey blue to blend in with the sky when a fish is directly under the float? Scientifically he's right. I even may have painted a float with a pale body, I never bothered again

    I do a lot of fly fishing, I think trout go for the appearance and movement of a fly. I doubt if dipping a Partridge and Orange in pilchard oil will make it more attractive to a trout.

    As for pike they identify prey by sight and vibrations, and can find deadbaits by smell in a flooded river. Is it worth coating a pike lure in pilchard oil? After a couple of casts and quick retrieve probably most of the oil will be washed away.

    There is a another problem which has been mentioned - it's a messy smelly job coating lures/baits with fish oil. Spill it and you'll come home reeking like a Grimsby trawler.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    Quote Originally Posted by keora View Post
    I remember the book by Barry Atkinson. In it, didn't he say that floats should be painted a pale grey blue to blend in with the sky when a fish is directly under the float? Scientifically he's right. I even may have painted a float with a pale body, I never bothered again

    I do a lot of fly fishing, I think trout go for the appearance and movement of a fly. I doubt if dipping a Partridge and Orange in pilchard oil will make it more attractive to a trout.

    As for pike they identify prey by sight and vibrations, and can find deadbaits by smell in a flooded river. Is it worth coating a pike lure in pilchard oil? After a couple of casts and quick retrieve probably most of the oil will be washed away.

    There is a another problem which has been mentioned - it's a messy smelly job coating lures/baits with fish oil. Spill it and you'll come home reeking like a Grimsby trawler.
    I haven't read all the book yet but I just looked that up, he does recommend light grey or pale blue for the underside of the float. He precedes it with all about how a fish sees and reckons dark green or brown as they often are is stupid. I think I will get a pot of light blue/grey paint-(good memory you have)

    Lots of interesting stuff in the book but I can see the problems with the pilchard oil but I still think he is probably right that if a lure or fly smelt natural it might just overcome their fear on a few occasions. However, I will give it a miss.

    I like the idea of liver for mullet though, in my mind I can think they would like it and maybe other sea fish as well. I will try that out sometime because sea bait is always a problem and this is cheap and easy enough to obtain; worth an experiment.
    Last edited by markg; 11-01-2019 at 06:30.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    I feed tinned pilchards to the cat from time to time. But that's as close as they get to my fishing gear. If I ever got anything that smells so bad on any tackle I'd bin it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Mid Wales
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    351

    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    I'm going to get all old fashioned and ethical about this, my opinions only. If you are lure or fly fishing the idea is to fool the fish with an imitation, naturally it doesn't always work, whether a dry fly for trout or a foot long lure for big pike. But the if you fool the fish you have won and if the fish turns away then you have lost - learn more and present the lure better. The whole point is not purely to land a big bag of fish.

    For instance, I don't consider chucking a booby (the fly!) out on a fast sink line, from bank or boat, and fishing it static just off the bottom to be fly fishing. Dunking it in pilchard oil could be the next step and imo have little connection to the art of fly fishing. I am sure it would be very, very effective but what is the point?
    So possibly it could work on both, in certain circumstances, but I ask why do it, just ledger a pilchard instead.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
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    There
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    Default Re: Pilchard oil on flys and lures?

    Not lures or flies but this is worth a try. Instead of a bomb put a small maggot feeder on. Put a piece of sponge in the feeder.
    The sponge has been dipped in pilchard oil by using forceps not fingers. Cod live oil is good and not so unpleasant.
    The sponge can be reinvigorated from time to time.
    Great for coloured water conditions on a river. Also works when eel fishing(horror).

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