by Henry de Beer
Crabs are a major problem on most of our waters. Not only do they pinch/cut mainline and traces off, they also love most carp baits.
There are several ways to tackle this problem or at least scale it down considerably...
If there's no other food Crabs will eat anything. Perhaps one of the biggest reasons why they claw/pinch mainline and traces.
In the past I've lost a lot of line in front of the rod tips. These days I make Crab feeding
spots (with chum) on both sides of my rods. End of problem.
A similar method can also be used on both sides of your bait, especially if you make the
crab feeding spots some time before you put your bait in.
You'll attract all the crabs in the vicinity to those 2 spots and as long as you feed them there will be no reason for them to return to your bait.
Chum can be anything from fish and meat waste (offal) to kitchen leftovers, you name it.
As long as it sinks to the bottom Crabs will find it and start feeding on it. While they are feeding on this spot, they will leave the boilie baited area more or less alone.
The trick is to keep putting chum in whilst you’re fishing.
The same method can also be used for Baber (Catfish).
For Baber chum use minced fish or meat waste (offal), fat, blood etc.
The second alternative is to use boilies that were designed to be Crab, Crayfish and Poisson Chat resistant, such as Mistral's Rosehip and Quest Baits Pineapple Crush.
Although they aren’t 100% Crab proof (the Crabs will still claw/eat the odd one), Crabs in general leave them alone unless there is nothing else to eat.
Also fish them close rather than on top of the baited area – It does work!
The third alternative is to use a product such as Gardner’s Hard Ball Bait Saver OR Rap-It from Carp-R-Us.
It is a tough high diameter shrink tube for wrapping hook baits to protect them from bait stealing Crabs, Crayfish and Poisson Chat, and even though the bait has been wrapped leakage of flavour and amino acids can still occur.
About the Author:Henry de Beer is at present a full time writer for the Henkor Website.
You can find him on Google+ and Twitter.