On the shelves of shops there are many varieties of bait, including – and for fishing in the winter. Three such mixtures are described in the review, but first it makes sense to determine what properties bait must have in order to be considered “winter”?
Differences "winter" bait
It is believed that in cold water the color of the bait should match the color of the bottom at the place of fishing. This is explained, first of all, by an increase in the transparency of water and increased caution of fish during this period. In addition, at the end of autumn and winter, the fish tries to spend its energy more economically, and if in the summer, frightened by the “wrong” bait, it can return after a short time, attracted by smell, food or just curiosity, then in cold water a bright spot of food will scare it away for a long time . Therefore, manufacturers are trying to make bait for difficult conditions, in particular for cold water,) brown or black.
Secondly, the aroma of winter bait should be much more moderate than for fishing in warm water. What’s the matter here – it’s better to ask ichthyologists, but the fact remains: the fish hardly react to “summer”, strongly smelling mixtures in the cold season, moreover, they often scare it away from the place of fishing. Therefore, in winter, it is especially necessary to carefully monitor the degree of flavoring of the bait, and even more so when adding additional flavorings. Also, winter baits most often have increased nutritional value. This can be explained by the very reluctance of fish to spend their energy in vain and spend them on "empty" bait. Because of this, many manufacturers increase the nutritional value of their “winter” mixtures by adding various protein supplements, dried bloodworms, betaine and other components to them.
Well, an important issue is the use of winter mixtures in combination with other components. If in summer, in principle, you can use the principle of “just add water” and use purchased bait in its pure form, in the cold season it will be almost mandatory to add feed components and, in most cases, soil. The need for a feeding bloodworm, maggot or worm in the bait is understandable – this is the same increase in the nutritional value of the mixture and its attractiveness to fish, but the soil plays a variety of roles: this is the “dilution” of the bait smell, and the increase in its action time, and the creation of an attractive fish muti, and much more. A lot of articles have been written on this topic, but it is worth noting that the presence of soil in the bait will never hurt.
Bait is available for a long time, both in summer and in winter, and you can find it in many stores. In fact, this is an ordinary “Unicorm”, turned into a winter bait by adding “plant-based proteins”. The bait is packed in standard yellow-green bags, the winter version is distinguished by the presence of the sticker “Winter. High Protein Content. ” Package weight – 1 kg. On the package you can find the production date of the bait, recommendations for preparing the finished mixture and increasing its effectiveness. But what is not on the package is the shelf life of the mixture. In general, Sabaneev companies are advised to use all Unicorms within a year after production. I think this case is no exception. The bait itself is finely divided, brown. The composition of the mixture is difficult to determine due to the finely ground components, but still you can distinguish between breadcrumbs and finely ground cereals.
There are also a small amount of red particles of unknown nature, as well as balls of those same “plant-based proteins” that quickly disintegrate in water and increase the nutritional value of the mixture. The bait has a “fishy” odor of medium intensity, corresponding in level to other “unicorms” of the base class. However, the flavoring itself can periodically change due to the search by the “Sabaneyans” for the optimal composition of the mixture, so it may be different for baits produced at different times. Like other types of "Unicorm", "Winter" is extremely easy to prepare. It is enough to pour the mixture into a spacious container and, stirring vigorously, add 500-600 ml of water. The consistency of the finished bait is easily regulated by the addition of water or a dry mixture.
"Unicorm-Winter" is best suited for fishing in the conditions of Central Russia, especially in the Moscow region and neighboring regions. When wet, it becomes noticeably darker; in most bodies of water with a sandy or clay bottom, it can be used without fear to scare away the fish with too bright a bait spot. With the degree of flavoring of the bait, there are usually no questions either. For the cold season, it fits well. Estimated cost – 70–80 rubles.
Minenko cool water
The bait was created with the participation of the famous Krasnodar athlete Pyotr MINENKO. Basically Minenko baits are known for their summer and sports variations, the option for cold water appeared in the company's assortment relatively recently. But, nevertheless, she has already managed to establish herself well with fishermen, especially in the southern regions. The bait is packaged in kilogram bags with a well-recognized corporate design. On the purpose of a specific mixture – "Universal", "Bream", "Roach" – says the sticker on the package. In addition, on the package you can find a brief history of Minenko bait, a description of the bait itself, a detailed recipe for preparation, the manufacturer’s address, storage conditions and shelf life. The only trouble is that, at the most thorough inspection, I could not find the manufacturing date on the bag, in view of which the indication of the expiration date of the mixture looks somehow strange.
The mixture is very finely ground. If at Unikorm at least some inclusions of ground grains were visible, here everything was brought to about the same size, and individual components were difficult to determine. The color of the mixture is brown-green, similar to the color of ground meal, which, apparently, is present in the bait in a significant amount. Yes, and the "cake" smell suggests the same thoughts. Although it is weaker than the smell of Minenko’s “summer” bait, it is noticeably superior to other mixtures considered in the review. The instruction recommends adding water to the bait in several stages and constantly mixing the mixture during cooking. This advice is better not to neglect, although some “liberties” bait still forgives. Better to slightly moisten the mixture than pour water into it. It will not be so easy to get rid of waterlogging – the mixture absorbs water well and reluctantly “gives it away”.
Soaked bait is better to "break" the soil, rather than a dry mixture. Minenko Cool Water is best suited for fishing in southern regions with relatively mild winters. In addition, the smell of oilcake, which “loves” southern fish, can work much worse in more northern areas. In Central Russia, this bait is more suitable for fishing in September-October, when the water begins to cool, but still its temperature is quite high. If you have to use it in colder water, it is better to "dilute" this mixture with soil or odorless "bases" in about a 1: 1 ratio. Estimated cost – 120 rubles.
Another bait from the south of Russia, and also “family”, made according to the prescription of sportsman-floater Oleg MIRONOV in the city of Novocherkassk. The considered bait refers to a series of "sports-amateur", designed not only for ordinary fishing, but also for "pulling" fish from other anglers. Like Minenko, it is better known to fishers in southern Russia. The complementary foods are packed in standard packages of 1 kg, the purpose of the mixture can be determined by the labels on the package, which is not as convenient as the “personalized” packages for each type of bait. As in the case of Minenko, the date of manufacture of the mixture on the bag is not found, although the expiration date (6 months) is indicated. Unlike other mixtures, this bait has a pronounced reddish tint, which intensifies when wetted. Such a choice for winter bait, and even universal, in my opinion is very doubtful. Painted baits work well in the summer on roach, bleak or carp, but in cold water – not everywhere.
In any case, when tested in Klyazma, Moscow Region, the mixture gave a pronounced negative effect. Finely ground bait, mainly consists of colored breadcrumbs with the inclusion of ground grains. The flavoring of the bait is weak, apparently, additional flavorings are included in the bait. The instructions recommend wetting the bait until it starts to mold, but in practice achieving optimal moisture is not easy. The fact is that the bait moistened to the desired state, even after standing for 10-15 minutes, has an unpleasant property – the balls from it often do not sink after casting and begin to sink only after a few seconds. When fishing during their course during this time, it can be attributed to a few meters from the fishing point. Therefore, it is better to either control the buoyancy of the balls near the shore, or use this mixture in combination with soil or other, more sticky baits. The same can be recommended to obtain a more acceptable color of the mixture, if it turns out that the bait repels fish.
Recommendations for using this bait are mixed. It makes sense to take 1–2 kilograms of fishing and check on a specific pond whether it will work in the cold season. Most likely, bait may turn out to be successful for a feeder, where a noticeable quick-wash mixture is often needed. True, additional aromatization may be required with the help of not too strong flavors such as Sabaneevsky “Unicorm-Super Bream”. When fishing with a fishing rod, it is better to use this bait on ponds without current to avoid the negative effect of its excessive buoyancy. In the vast majority of cases, the addition of soil is necessary. Estimated cost – 130 rubles.
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