The Coach Match ace Jamie Hughes helps you choose ground­bait colours

THIS WEEK: Choose the right ground­bait colour and land more fish!

Angling Times (UK) - - WELCOME -

WITH the shelves of your lo­cal tackle shop packed to the rafters with bags of ground­bait, pick­ing the right one for your next ses­sion can cause a real headache.

Two-times Fish O’Ma­nia cham­pion Jamie Hughes has found that six colours will cover ev­ery sce­nario he is likely to face.

This week, Angling Times gets a ground­bait mas­ter­class from the com­mer­cial fish­ery su­per­star.


“This is with­out doubt the most ver­sa­tile colour, and gets plenty of use. Pel­lets com­ple­ment it per­fectly, and damp­ened mi­cros or 4mm pel­lets are usu­ally mixed in with it.

“It can be fed in large hard balls in open water when carp or bream are the tar­get or in small nuggets in shal­low water tight to the far bank of a snake lake.”


“When the water gets re­ally clear this colour gives fish the con­fi­dence to feed. If you are tar­get­ing F1s or skim­mers and use a light-coloured ground­bait they seem to spook over it, prob­a­bly be­cause they no­tice other fish and mis­take them for preda­tors.

“Feed dark ground­bait and you in­stantly elim­i­nate that prob­lem. The fish will re­main in your peg for long pe­ri­ods of time.”


“A lot of venues I fish have been stocked with small F1s in re­cent months and they re­spond well to sloppy ground­bait.

“This in­volves over­wet­ting the ground­bait so that it be­comes re­ally runny.

“Yel­low is the per­fect colour as it’s re­ally vi­brant and will be in­stantly spot­ted by hun­gry F1s.

“Feed a small nugget af­ter ev­ery fish and use a banded hard pel­let as hook­bait – you’ll get a fish ev­ery chuck.

“This tac­tic will work for the next few weeks but be­comes less ef­fec­tive once the tem­per­a­tures re­ally start to dip.”


“When paste fish­ing comes to the fore you can’t go wrong with green ground­bait. A small nugget of paste sat over a bed of pel­lets will bring bites all day long.

“Ex­per­i­ment with the con­sis­tency of your paste through­out the day, us­ing a re­ally soft paste when bites are com­ing thick and fast, but thick­en­ing it up a lit­tle when you are hav­ing to wait for ac­tion so that it doesn’t in­stantly melt off the hook.”


“Red is rarely used on com­mer­cials these days but I find it is deadly on fish­eries where the bot­tom is ei­ther clay or sand.

“Lar­ford Lakes is a prime ex­am­ple of where red ground­bait works. The fish here have seen ev­ery trick in the book and can be ex­tremely wary feed­ing over a brown ground­bait. Switch to red and you’ll be amazed at how quickly they drop their guard!

“Feed it loose in any­where be­tween 1ft and 2ft of water and ex­pect to land some very big fish.”


“For Method feeder fish­ing this is my num­ber one choice. A lot of peo­ple ask why this is so – it’s all about giv­ing the fish some­thing they rarely see.

“Com­mer­cial fish have been caught dozens of times on the Method and wise up to mi­cros or brown ground­baits. Orange ground­baits of­fer an al­ter­na­tive that they won’t have seen be­fore, with dead red mag­gots, corn or a banded hard pel­let top hook­baits.

“Make the right choices when it comes to ground­bait colour and your re­sults will in­stantly im­prove.”

Jamie Hughes is very par­tic­u­lar about the colour of his ground­bait. Se­lect your ground­bait colour with care.

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