In my lifelong pursuit of the wily trout I have discovered nothing beats the thrill of hunting down, selecting the appropriate artificial bait; determining the proper presentation to finally hook and land one of the most exciting fishes to catch. The wily trout in its natural habitat, of course. Having said that I have also discovered there is another thrill to be had in my quest for the perfect fishing day: stocked trout.
Most of my early fishing experiences have been on small reservoirs or rivers that are regularly stocked. The main difference between stocked trout and “wild” trout is found in the type of food they eat during their early growth stages. Wild fish, of course, subsist on “live” bait among which are bugs, flies, smaller aquatic animals or fishes and anything they can get in their habitat. On the other hand stocked trout are fed regularly and with very specific types of nourishment. They get used to the artificial foods they see. This causes them to seek out the same types of food when they are introduced into a natural environment. So, the fisherman who recognises this and tailors his approach to this fact will often do as well if not better than the fisherman who uses only those baits found in nature.
Tip #1. Some of the best baits for stocked fish are: scented baits such as Powerbait or cheeses that have been impregnated with scent. gear for the fishing
Tip #2. Worms and marshmallows present a live target to be sure but one that is elevated into the zone where the fish are actively seeking food. (Sounds a little gruesome but always break the worm in half or use smaller worms not night crawlers). Always put the marshmallow on the hook first. This only works with a single, barbed hook not a treble hook.
Tip #3. Salmon Eggs are an under used bait that is very effective. I usually fish them underneath a bobber or float to get them down into the strike zone of the hungry fish.
Bonus tip. Lures can be very effective as they will trigger the strike mode that is genetically engineered into every trout whether they are wild or stocked.
There you have it. I cannot guarantee success in catching fish but I can guarantee a great time on the water or at its edge whether it be a stream, river, reservoir or lake. Remember to always keep an open mind and let the fish tell you what they want to eat by offering them different types of bait