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Effective carp angling with maggots

Kick-start the season: Carp fishing with maggots

The last couple of years, the fishing after a severe winter was pretty tough for me. I always started up with some normal pre-baiting and fishing with standard carp bait; like 20 millimetre boilies and by occasion some additional sweet corn. Year after year it took me some while before I caught my first fish of the sea-son. This year I gave my approach some second thoughts and decided to do it completely different. In the early spring carp are not into big feeding frenzies. They prefer picking up only small particles of bait and that’s exactly what I was going to serve them this coming session. This is how I kick-started my 2017 season.

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First of all I decided to put living maggots in my particle mix. Living maggots can make carp go crazy in the colder months of the year and I was pretty confident that this could make the difference for me this time again. I ordered 6 litres of living maggots at my local pet shop. They asked me in a kind of astonished way if I was organizing a fishing competition this early in the year. When I told them I’m a carp angler and I’ll use the maggots for carp fishing they looked very surprised.

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I prepared my standard particle mix with hemp, sweet corn, some tigers and a small amount of Mainline Banoffee 15 millimetre boilies. In the end I also added some frozen red maggots to the mix.
The living maggots, including some cooling elements, went in a separate bucket and travelled with me on the almost 6 hour trip to the north of France.

I always prefer using fluorocarbon rigs on clear water gravel pits. I totally trust my self tied IQ-D-rig with hook size 4. My hook bait is a cut-off Mainline Banoffee 15 millimetre boilie topped with 3 artificial maggot clusters in a brown and red colour. The 3 maggot clusters will give the hook bait just a nicely balanced pop-up effect. Normally in this time of the year I would present my hook bait with a handful of crushed boilies, but I decided to fill up my bait boat with 3 big spoons full of particle mix and living maggots. At first you would think this is too much bait with water temperatures only between 8 and 10 degrees, but I it would proof the opposite.

The other 2 rods are being fished the standard way; one with a choddy and the other one with a snow-man presentation over some complete and crushed boilies. All the rods went in just before dark and with day temperatures of almost 20 degrees, the thermometer dropped pretty quickly after the sun was gone. By the time it got 11 o’clock it was just only 5 degrees. We kept ourselves warm with a small campfire and decided to crawl in our bed chairs early.

In the middle of the night one of my alarms screamed off and it only took me a couple of seconds to get out of my warm bed chair. I looked up to my rods… YES… it was the “maggot-rod”. Did my plan work out this quick? After a short but intense fight, a twenty-one kilogram mirror carp slides into my landing net. YEAH!
At this time it still could have been a lucky shot, but my confidence about my maggot approach was on, big time. We took care of the fish and made some quick photos in the night before putting it back in the freez-ing cold water. Unlike myself; I felt far from being cold.

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After this first heavyweight stunner we caught some more fish on different spots. All of them on the “mag-got-rod” baited up with the particle-maggot-mix and all within an hour after re-baiting. The other rods stayed quiet the whole session, nevertheless we kept on refreshing the hook baits every six hours but it didn’t make any difference. This was the time that I knew it for sure; this maggot approach did the job. It brought us these beautiful big carp.

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And just as I thought the fish had left our zone due to the change of wind-direction the “maggot-rod” went off again and it resulted in my personal best common carp. Unbelievable but true, the icing on the cake.
What a perfect an indescribable start of the season. I never experienced something like this before. Still buzzing! Carp fishing with maggots! Try it out for yourself!

Erik Hurxkens

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