For centuries, anglers have been making fish chum to lure in the biggest beasts in the ocean. Using chum isn’t just recommended, it’s essential to increase the odds of a perfect catch. It can go by many names, but the effects are always the same. Chum, burley, ground bait & bunker all help attract fish by adding extra ingredients to the water. It magnifies the amount of food in the water, which brings in more predators to feed. By using chum, it will enhance your fishing experience by increasing the odds of a good catch.
While the principle behind using fish chum is simple, the ingredients can be as complex as you want. The more appealing the chum, the more likely you are going to catch something. Unfortunately, what’s disgusting to us appears delicious to fish. For this reason, chum is usually made from ground-up fish entrails, worms & crustaceans. From there grains or bread can be added to stimulate fermentation. In the end you get a big stinky mess, but the fish go wild for it. We have compiled a list of the basics of making chum. Prepare to get down & dirty!
The Basics of Making Chum
Making your own chum may be gut wrenching, but it brings a slew of advantages. The main appeal is the cost, since prepackaged chum is extremely expensive. The low cost of making your own saves money for more fishing trips. Another great factor is the ability to tailor make your recipe to target a specific species of fish. Each species has different tastes, so doing your research is essential. Once you have your chum, there’s no excuse not to embark on the next fishing trip.
Even though making your own chum is advisable, it’s far from glamourous. Whichever recipe you choose, it will involve grinding, hacking & fermenting dead marine life. This means that it is extremely messy, & the smell isn’t for people with weak stomachs. But with the proper preparation, making your own chum can’t be beaten. It isn’t for the faint of heart, but neither is saltwater fishing.
No matter what recipe of chum you are making, the same tools are needed. First you need to pick the right recipe for the species of fish you are targeting. Not all fish will do backflips for ground up cod, so figure out what you want to catch. Once you know your recipe, you will need this list of tools:
- Industrial Cutting Board
- Separate Freezer
- Sealable Container
- Hose to Wash Up the Mess
Once you have the necessary tools, making chum is a fairly easy task. Depending on the recipe, you will have to gut, grind & hack the fish into pieces. After the proper consistency is achieved, everything will be stored in air tight containers & left out in the sun. Once it has reached its prime, you can store it in a separate freezer in the garage. Don’t attempt to use a recreational freezer, your wife will never forgive you! There are plenty of small box freezers that are worth purchasing & putting in the garage.
When the chum is in the freezer, you are ready to take on the high sea. Just remember to let the mixture thaw out for a few days before your trip. Don’t open the tub until you are on the boat, since these smells are extremely hard to get rid of. Once anglers start making chum, it empowers them with being able to go after any species of fish. It’s an intimate experience, & it can’t be replaced if you take saltwater fishing seriously.