When considering live bait for fishing many people already use Nightcrawlers and Earthworms, however there is a growing trend of people using mealworms as a live bait instead. Fishermen often will use bait types as tools which are part of a toolbox to catch fish with different fish being more or less attracted to different bait types. This blog will look at the benefits of using mealworms as a bait, It’s customizability and its application as an attractant in ground bait.
Mealworms are not actually worms but the larval state of the darkling beetle and this difference gives them a very different consistency and look to actual worm types such as earthworms and nightcrawlers. Mealworms are more buoyant than actual worms and their golden exoskeleton makes them easily visible in murky water where darker worms can be harder for fish to see. This buoyancy makes it easier to keep the bait in feeding lanes where fish naturally predate insects from. Many fish types are especially keen on Mealworms, an example of which is the Trout. Trout are often fished on mealworms due to their love of worms and the Mealworm’s lower movement level than regular worms stops them from being scared as easily, a problem common with trout fishing.
The beauty of using mealworms as bait is the ability to customize your mealworms for size and gut loading them on foods that will attract the fish you’re looking to attract. Mealworms will live, grow and reproduce using the food of your choice. Smaller fish tend to prefer smaller younger mealworms and by growing your own you can easily choose which size of mealworm is the most effective for your fishing trip. Feeding your mealworms for the week preceding your trip on a food of choice can also make your mealworms more attractive to different fish types. Fish types preferring sweet baits can be offered mealworms gut loaded with fruits such as strawberries to increase palatability whereas those preferring protein based foods can be offered mealworms fed on trout pellets or fish food.
Mealworms also make an excellent attractant in ground bait. You can humanely kill your mealworms by placing them in the freezer for 10 minutes. Then by drying them in the oven at a low heat for 10 minutes they can be ground into powder and added to cocktail mixes, ground baits or homemade boilies.
Mealworms have a versatility and palatability beyond that of most bait types for fishing and when growing your own they have a customizability and a cost effectiveness that is hard to compare!
Tips on how to rig your mealworm can be found in this video.