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  1. #1
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    Default Prawns, cockles and mussels

    I have had success with prawns on some waters but not all the time and total failure on others. Mussels come of the hook or hair quite easily and I haven't caught consistently. I have never caught on cockles.

    This brings me to my question of the day. I can locate cockles and mussels quite easily but they are pickled. I usually pour of the vinegar and wash them in water but have occasionally tried them straight out of the jar. I can buy fresh mussels and cook them but there wouldn't be any left for the fish. What do others do?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    I'm still learning about prawns.

    I find Asda's ones work well and Sainsburys don't, of course the lack of confidence could be a self fulfilling prophecy when using both but it has happened so many times to make me think i'm not totally bonkers (In that respect anyway ). Also think they can spoil quite easily and need looking after on the bank

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    I'm a fan of cockles...both to eat and as bait but I only ever use the frozen ( non pickled ) ones. You can wash the pickled ones but to my mind you will never get rid of the vinegar completely and in doing so you are rinsing most of the scent down the plughole. Tesco used to do a big bag for a fiver but not any more...Sainsburys still stock them round here. They can be instant and also devastating for tench. Rarely use prawn as to my mind they are just not selective enough...perch love em as do carp and bream. I do use them but not often.

    Never done any good on mussels...other baits have been much more productive for me so even though they look terrific I never use them. Bearing in mind I am almost always trying to avoid carp and bream.
    Last edited by S-Kippy; 18-09-2019 at 12:53.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    Quote Originally Posted by S-Kippy View Post
    Rarely use prawn as to my mind they are just not selective enough...perch love em as do carp and bream. I do use them but not often.
    And Chub, I've never seen chub make a beeline for a bait as they do for prawns, it's quite a sight in clear water

  5. #5
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    Nov 2015
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    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    I'll have a look for frozen cockles in my local Sainsbury's. I prefer to use ordinary prawns rather than king prawns. I had a can of smoked mussels with me once but ate them myself; I was transported back to my local tapas bar.

  6. #6
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    Sep 2009
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    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    Fresh mussels from Morrison’s fishmonger pop in to Morrison after 6pm and buy them they mark them down to 50 or 60p a tray bag them up and freeze them in session pack size 10 or 12

    I rig them no a hair rig and use a clear sequin to help stop the hair pulling out

    Push the hair though a sequin then the mussel then thought another in the sequin so the mussel is sandwiched once this is done you only need to re thread the top sequin when re baiting

    Sequins work well with any hair rigged soft bait (you could use coloured in you wanted)

    Bags of sequins from eBay are 1.50 for 2000
    Trust me I’m an Engineer

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    Quote Originally Posted by theartist View Post
    And Chub, I've never seen chub make a beeline for a bait as they do for prawns, it's quite a sight in clear water
    I started to use peeled prawns back in early 1977 before they had become a standard bait for the coarse angler, and were never even mentioned in the Angling press other than very occasionally when someone had used an unpeeled prawn for catching the odd Salmon.

    Back in those early days very few Chub had even seen them let alone been caught on one; and I had just left the RN and had started to work in a freezer food storage company where I had access to lots of broken packets of peeled prawns, and I just thought that they might be a great bait for Chub so I tried them on the river Kennet for Chub and was very pleasantly surprised by the positive bites that I got when I used them.

    I remember when I had driven past Dobs Weir on the river Lea after a night out chasing Carp at a nearby lake and I had a packet of prawns in my freezer bag so decided to give them a try there.
    Dobbs Weir that sunny day was packed with every swim occupied by someone, but I waded out to a sunken barge in between two swims and started to fish from there.

    Within a minute or two I had my rod almost yanked from my hand and had a very nice Chub on, and I continued to catch Chub on prawn, then the guy on my right came over to ask what bait I was using, because very few fish had been coming out that day around the weir; and I ended up sharing my prawns with him and we both started Catching Chub.

    I also caught my very first 5lb Chub from Kings Weir using a peeled prawn too.

    But nowerdays everyone but the barman’s daughter is using prawns and they’re no longer a rare bait and no longer seem as good a bait as they were back in those early days.

    I used to hook them as in the diagram below which was almost guaranteed to hook my Chub in the corner of its mouth nearly every time; using a light link leger.



    The prawns I used were not the cheap and colourless ones with their flavours boiled out of them, like you get in the average supermarket, but were the better quality ones with some of their juices and flavour still in them (I didn’t have to buy and pay for them myself as they were from broken packets that I found in the storage freezers).

    Keith
    Last edited by Keith M; 18-09-2019 at 16:31.
    Happiness is fish shaped (It used to be woman shaped but the wife is getting on a bit now)

  8. #8
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    Aug 2014
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    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    Just a reminder that the (joint) record perch was caught on a prawn.

    I did go to the record venue with a bag of prawns and blanked unsurprisingly.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    If you have any reason to think mussel will work on your water, Mike, or you just want to give it a try, get yourself a pack of fresh mussels ( about £1.30 from Morrisons), get one of those bait bands with a little tab to put the hook through in a size suitable for a large pellet ( I bet you've got some). Hook up the band and open it with one of those things with 4 prongs that people hold pellet bands open with (again, I bet you have one or even two), and put your mussel in the band. You'll be pleasantly surprised to find it will stay on for several casts and you'll never try to hair rig one again. I'm not going to tell you what I use banded mussel for, but it's not bream.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Prawns, cockles and mussels

    I have tried Prawn for Carp and they work but the perch go mad for them and I had problems keeping them on the hook - I like that diagram thanks !
    I have tried the other baits mentioned to no real effect but also did try tinned roe in my ground bait and that seemed effective (except there are so many other variables in fishing [especially my casting]) that its difficult to define what has made the difference

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