Why tiger nuts are one of the best baits for carp

A secret weapon for some of our best carpers, here’s everything you need to know about tiger nuts

Why tiger nuts are one of the best baits for carp

by Angling Times |

ON VENUES where their use is permitted, tiger nuts are without doubt one of the most devastatingly effective baits.

There’s something about these small, sweet food items that carp find irresistible. Despite this, though, they are still relatively under-used by carp anglers overall. This is likely due to the very real risk, as with any particle, of them not being prepared correctly or the fear of overfeeding the fish with these difficult to digest food items.

So, what is it about tigers that carp find so appealing?

First, it’s the crunch factor. We know carp enjoy this when eating natural food like snails and mussels. Once they’ve chomped down on them a sensationally sweet taste is released, something bait manufacturers have been keen to try and replicate in boilie hookbaits. Their final alluring characteristic is their subtle, yet still visual, coloration and appearance, making them an attractive food item for the most pressured of fish.

USE IN MODERATION

There has been a growing trend for anglers to introduce more and more nuts, something the best, including Terry Hearn, have said simply isn’t needed.

This overbaiting with tiger nuts offers little benefit to the angler and, more importantly, the fish. A couple of handfuls as part of a spod mix is more than enough for a session. An even bigger edge is to just fish six to a dozen nuts on a spot around a matching balanced hookbait.

Overbaiting with tiger nuts offers little benefit to the angler
Overbaiting with tiger nuts offers little benefit to the angler

PREPARATION

There’s no need to worry about preparing tiger nuts, because if you aren’t confident that you can do it correctly, there are a host of companies selling pre-prepared versions off the shelf.

Dry tigers
Dry tigers

If you do want to prepare them yourself, however, the process is relatively simple. Start by adding the dry tigers to a bucket and covering them in water.

After a 24 hour-soak, bring the water to the boil and simmer gently for 30-40 minutes. One of the usual benefits of cooking your own particles is that at this stage extra attractors can be added to the bait. Tigers, however, due to their hard outer shell, are difficult to boost with additional attractors in the cooking process.

Once cooked, divide your tigers up into bags, putting any you won’t need on your next session in the freezer – they freeze incredibly well.

Alternatively, you can use a blender to create some chopped tigers, which make a super-effective feed.

Crushed tigers are a real edge
Crushed tigers are a real edge

AVOID THE BREAM

Tigers are a great hookbait when trying to avoid nuisance species such as bream and tench. For whatever reason, they seem to be less enthusiastic at picking up these crunchy parcels, but stick a bright pop-up out there and they will be straight on it.

Tigers are a great hookbait when trying to avoid nuisance species
Tigers are a great hookbait when trying to avoid nuisance species

BALANCED BAITS

Plugging your tiger nut hookbaits with cork is a perfect way to counter the weight of the hook and ensure the presentation acts naturally in the water. Simply bore a hole with a 6mm nut drill and add the correct amount of cork.

Plugging your tiger nut hookbaits with cork is a perfect way to counter the weight of the hook
Plugging your tiger nut hookbaits with cork is a perfect way to counter the weight of the hook
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