Homemade Fish Scents for Plastics

Written by mike schoonveld
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Homemade Fish Scents for Plastics
Fishermen use a variety of flavours to enhance their fishing lures. (Thomas Northcut/Lifesize/Getty Images)

Soft plastic baits that mimic nightcrawlers, crayfish, minnows or lizards are the favourite lure of many fishermen. All these baits are available --- for a premium price --- impregnated with a variety of scents and flavours to make them even more appealing to fish. Fishermen can save money by purchasing unflavored or unscented plastic lures, then treating them with scents and flavours they make themselves. Catching fish using "secret" flavour combinations can add satisfaction to your next fishing trip.


Pack your plastic baits in a container filled with table salt to which you have added enough water to turn the salt to a damp, almost sticky texture. Leave the baits in the salt at least overnight to absorb the salt into the plastic. You can store them in the salt indefinitely.


Infusing your plastic baits with garlic is easy. Put 1/2 cup of vegetable oil in a small skillet. Crush a fresh, whole garlic bulb, add it to the oil and heat it just until the first sizzle starts showing the garlic is cooking. Remove the garlic from the heat, and let it cool to room temperature.

Put the garlic oil in a plastic container, and add your plastic baits. Again, let them steep in the flavoured oil overnight or longer before using them.

Herbs and Spices

Experiment with other herbs and spices to see whether the fish in your waters show any preference for specific flavours. Various mints, anise, vanilla and other oils and spices have had positive results. As strange as it may seem, rhubarb, tobacco, various hard liquors and even spray lubricant pay off for some fishermen.

Secret Recipes

A part of the fun of concocting homemade flavours to enhance fishing baits lies in experimentation. Try adding garlic oil to the salt or brewing some rhubarb tea with a kick of brandy to soak your plastic baits. You might experience instant success or abject failure; if you are having fun, however, you are a winner either way.

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