* Exploiting fish meal pastes and using two different pastes recipes together:
A great 'edge' where the fish have become used to eating fish meal type boilies and are now hard to hook using them, is to bait up with fish or shellfish meal boilies and pastes. Then use two different types of paste, like fish meal paste and bird food based paste, or liver based paste on the hook, made separately, but squeezed together by hand, just before use.
For example, your free baits could be fish meals, (dark red), but you could use a paste of yellow bird food, pinched together with an amount of fish meal paste (dark red).
For example: 50 % fish meal (dark red) plus 50 % bird food (yellow.)
Or: 50 % milk protein (white) and 50 % liver (black.)
This has been great at selecting bigger fish for me that are easier to hook on two baits used together, than one! The same principle can be used for boilies, where you can use half a boilie of different types together.
* 'Curing' baits to release alcohols and to 'part predigest' your baits:
With pure milk protein ingredient baits, bicarbonate of soda is used to physically open up the dense texture of this bait to release its flavours and smells, and 'free up' amino acids.
Milk protein baits become especially effective when baits are 'aged' or 'cured' in moderate heat in a sealed container. Occasionally, over the period of about 5 days, the baits are allowed to air to remove moisture, and then sealed again. Each type of boilie bait, or new bait recipe may take different time periods to reach 'peak' attraction.
This allows bacterial enzymes to start digesting (breaking down,) the compounds inside the bait ingredients, producing a 'sticky' surface, (or a powdery one) depending on moisture levels in the bait.
In many baits, the alcohol levels in the bait are raised by curing method, and carp are known to respond strongly to these.
'Curing' is a recognized method of enhancing the effectiveness of many types of boilies. Please note that very oily baits are not suited to this method.
This method takes some experimentation with your 'cured' baits on the waterside, actually fishing to test results in the landing net. You will certainly know when you get things right by the numbers of fish caught!
* Other techniques can be used to increase the effectiveness of baits; Enzymes and body building protein powders:
Enzymes such as amylase and trypsin can be added in crystal form to your base mix, for the same digestive 'hydrolyzing' effect as in curing. They affect the carbohydrate and protein components of your bait mix, predigesting these ingredients and enhancing these ingredients powerfully.
The alkaloid attractor 'betaine hydrochloride' is used as a 'digestive metabolic aid' in the health industry. It can used be in liquid or white granular, hygroscopic, water-absorbing form. It is a 'delivery form' of Hydrochloric Acid, and, used for carp, helps energy-efficient digestion. It is best used in combination with amino acids, as an attractor.
Betaine is 'lipotropic'. Betaine, along with choline and L-methionine, in the carp's body, prevents deposition of fats (cholesterols) in the liver, and accelerates their removal. This activity helps to release energy to the carp.
What this means for the carp bait designer, is it allows more energy to be released from bait to the carp, so quickly giving the carp a 'wellness, feel good factor' that it associates with your bait! This in turn allows it to eat more bait, increasing the likelihood of a confident take and a possible preference for your bait over competing anglers' baits!
Other betaine ingredients with similar attractional and beneficial effects for use in baits are: green and blue lip mussel extract, lobster extract and molasses.
Bromelain is a similar-acting enzyme found throughout the pineapple fruit that can be used in baits as a general food type enzyme. These are often on offer in crystal form. It is this enzyme that gives the 'tingling sensation' in your mouth when you eat pineapple.
When these enzymes are incorporated in your bait, they effect ingredients by predigesting them, releasing more nutrients and attraction from the bait. This really boosts catches!
Bromelain is commonly used to help digestion of high protein body-building formula powders.
I had many memorable big fish catches, using quick dissolving, high sugar, and whey powders based body building powders. These are really nutritional while being very attractive to carp, being high in quality proteins like casein, sodium and calcium caseinates, which carp just seem to love.
Just add eggs to these powders, with a small amount of maize meal or semolina as a binder. These powders are very rich in sugars and these will make your bait dissolve in water, very quickly, without extra binding ingredients for making hook baits more resilient.
I have often used these types of nutritional powders to make very successful pastes for 'free bait' offerings, and as quick and easy to make hook baits too.
I usually add extra body building liquid protein supplement to these baits to boost the very attractive amino acid content of the bait. These baits are simply 'carp baits in a tin' and work very well; and often tempt the bigger fish that more commonly used boilies cannot. There are many other secrets to exploit, and it really pays to learn as many as possible! (Warning: this article is protected by copyright.)