Know your stuff | Chub edition

Question 1. When would worms work over maggots for chub?

In clear water, small baits such as maggots, casters, worms or bread are relatively inconspicuous and natural-looking to the fish and allow you to use small hooks and light lines. A piece of soft bread flake wrapped around a size 16 or 14 hook is a killer bait.

When the river is well coloured, the fish will often feed by scent and smell. Then, cheesepaste, whole lobworms or halibut pellets and smelly boilies rule the roost. All give off an aroma that chub will home in on. Bait size is unimportant – chub will find it!

Take a well-stocked bait bag and be prepared to change baits if your first choice fails. Switching from a boilie to a worm can trigger a reaction on coloured rivers, as can changing from bread to maggots in clear water.

Question 2. How long should I fish each swim for when roving for chub on the river?

a bite shouldn’t be too long in coming from likely-looking spots so, as a rule, two or three casts should be enough. Don’t be too hasty to reel in, though. A chub can take five minutes checking out the hookbait before finally deciding to take it.

If you are using a small feeder to introduce a little bait alongside what’s on the hook, the wait can be longer, as you’ll be trying to build the swim up and encourage more than one fish into the area. Still cast every five minutes but be prepared to devote up to half-an-hour to the swim in this situation.

Question 3. Do lures work for chub?

Lures work well for chub, but pike may turn up so don’t fish too light a line. Work the lure through the swim several times. A plug or small spoon will dive and rise like a small prey fish and predatory chub will chase and engulf it. Twitch the lure to provoke the action.

Cast and work the lure close to overhanging cover or on the edge of creases where chub take up residence, and use a lure that’s bright and easy to see. Lure fishing only works in clear conditions when the chub can see its prey.