Very often, when fishing for chub on the Don or Oka tributaries, there are situations when fish is caught almost exclusively with a wobbler of a certain type, color and size. At the same time, fish completely ignore other baits, even very expensive Japanese manufacturers’ woolers. For example, I witnessed how expensive “Smiths” and “Megabass” did not work at all, and the chub was caught, and almost from every wire, on “quiet”, without balls, balsa Ugly Dackling or Salmo. What’s the matter here? In the learning ability of the chub, in getting used to the “pressure” of wobblers of the same style? Or maybe in the coincidence of the game and the external signs of a catchy wobbler with this or that food object of the chub? It is difficult to answer, but one thing is clear: the choice of a wobbler is a creative business and success here largely depends on the angler’s correct assessment of the momentary situation in the reservoir.
One day in May, my friend and fanatic of catching chub Andrei K. went on another fishing trip far enough south of Moscow, where there was no spring ban on spinning fishing. It should be noted that Andrei spent almost the entire spring and half of the summer on the southern chub rivers, only occasionally leaving for the city. I am reporting this in order to make it clear what a gigantic amount of statistics my friend has collected on this fish.
He was amazed at the results of this trip. At one of the best spots, only a large chub pecked – the average weight of fish exceeded 1.5 kg, and the largest one was weighing well over two. But that was not the most surprising thing. Cases of hitting large fish are not uncommon, something else surprised: chubs completely ignored lures of small and medium-sized groups and attacked only very large wobblers. Andrey had only two such wobblers (Square A Bomber, about 65 mm long). He very quickly left one on the snags and caught the second one very carefully. But the second angler, his partner, did not have such large wobblers with him and no matter how much he spent his baits in the same zone and at the same depth as Andrey, there were no bites at all. Not on the first day of fishing, nor on the second.
Returning from this trip, both friends were in the store the next day, seriously buying large wobblers. But the most remarkable thing is that when they came to the same river again, they found that the chub was no longer interested in such baits. Andrey’s partner, continuing to sacredly believe in the super-cunning of just such a size group of wobblers – after all, he saw this “miracle” with his own eyes! – I caught a few more fishing trips only with large wobblers – and completely unsuccessfully. From this example, it can be concluded that it is often very important to get into the correct size group of lures to achieve a good result.
But it happens, and very often, that the chub reacts only to small lures, completely ignoring the lures of even an average size group. This is typical for the middle of summer, when insects that have fallen into the water begin to form a large proportion in the fish diet. The use of baby wobblers is especially effective in those parts of rivers where tree branches hang over the water. In windy weather, insects are blown off the leaves, and chubs are well aware of this. A similar picture is observed on those rivers where fishing pressure is very strong and there are many resting citizens. Most often in such places the fish are very cautious and react more readily to small baits.
The main difficulty of fishing with small lures is the almost obligatory use of a line with a low breaking load, which can be broken even on medium-sized fish. The second problem is small and weak tees. A chub weighing a little over a kilogram easily unbends such hooks.
Very often, color is the most important thing, overshadowing the model of the wobbler and the nature of the lure’s play. It’s no secret that chubs are usually more willing to attack wobblers of dark colors – black or brown. Especially for clear water. If for some reason there are no lures from this spectrum with you, a black waterproof marker will help, which is always worth having in your vest pocket. They can, if necessary, darken the wobbler. This technique often helped me out on many rivers in the middle lane. Why the chub prefers dark baits cannot be said for sure. Apparently, they remind him of the usual food objects of a similar color – ground and water beetles, large dragonfly larvae, possibly crayfish.
But it is even more difficult to understand the situation when fish are caught only with white wobblers. I encountered this on one of the fishing trips on the Don. It was in the middle of summer, in hot, clear weather. Neither I nor my friends were able to solve this riddle. Whom can a milk-colored wobbler resemble a chub? At the end of the topic about the color predilections of chubs, I must say that aggressive, poisonous yellow and orange colors very often work. Bites on lures of these colors are often particularly strong and sharp. Moreover, this does not depend on transparency, water level and its temperature. It’s just that chubs have just such a mood at the moment.
What color to start fishing with? Since all the “hits” in the color were more likely an accident than a regularity, I do not presume to answer this question unambiguously. I think nothing but trial and error will help here. As for me, I always start with lighter colors like silver. I caught my largest chub, weighing more than two kilograms, with a Cultiva Bug Eye wobbler of almost white color. And I caught it almost in complete darkness.