Top water baits have always been my favorite. In fact over 80 percent of my tackle box is strictly of top water lures. I’ve been fishing for many years and I have to say I’ve had the most luck with Jitterbugs. Jitterbugs are a very versatile lure because they not only work great for bass fishing (day or night) but many have had luck with late night musky fishing and pike fishing.
When first going to a new fishing spot I always start out with a Jitterbug. They’re easy to use and very effective. One of the best reasons to use a Jitterbug or similar bait is that if you’re in an unfamiliar area, you don’t have to worry about it getting stuck underwater. They work great in shallow or deep water and they also come in many different sizes and colors.
I’ve found that the red and white Jitterbugs, or the solid black Jitterbugs work the best when fishing at night. I’ve also noticed that the green and black striped Jitterbug works the best during the hot summer months. Jitterbugs can have a solid or jointed body. Though many people give great reviews on the jointed Jitterbugs, I’ve had the most luck with the original solid body.
There’s something about the sound they make that bass find irresistible. Even if a bass misses on its first strike, oftentimes if I cast back out in the same spot it will still hit again. When fishing from a kayak I usually paddle out towards the middle of the water and cast as close to the bank as I can. After casting, I let the jitterbug sit for a few seconds. Then, I start reeling at a steady pace and wait for the strike. Sometimes you will have to reel a little faster, it just depends on the weather and water conditions.
If a bass misses the Jitterbug while you reel in, continue to reel it in as if nothing happened. The same goes for if you see the bass starting to swirl to attack it. You want to make sure you continue to reel in at a steady pace. If you see the fish coming up to your lure, don’t stop reeling. If you stop while the fish is getting ready to strike it seems too suspicious.
I believe Jitterbugs are so effective because they stimulate the bass’s senses. As many of you know, bass don’t just bite when they are hungry. They often will strike if you trigger their senses. They could be curious, defensive, or even aggressive. There have been many times I’ve cast out the Jitterbug and a bass will attack it, but will miss in an aggressive manner. When this happens I cast out again and usually it will hit again and I will be able to set the hook. I’ve also had times when the bass have been so territorial they’ve foul hooked themselves as I was reeling in.
Overall, Jitterbugs are a great lure. Many of you have probably used them before, but if you haven’t they’re worth trying out. They tend to work the best for me in ponds and lakes, but I’ve also caught bass in rivers and creeks with them as well. I hope I’ve provided a couple tips to those who are beginners with top water baits. They really are so simple to use that the best way to find out if you like them is to go and test them out.