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What is Spybaiting? The new technique that is turning heads.

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Duo Realis Spin Bait 80

Spybaiting is a new finesse technique popularized in Japan for clear water bass fishing. This technique relies on finesse, and can be extremely effective at generating strikes, as opposed to jerkbaits, which relies on the motion of the angler’s lure.

Spybaiting is similar to many of the “do-nothing” lures on the market. Also known as silent capture has begun to catch on in American markets with the introduction of various spinbait models late last year by Realis and other Japanese lure manufacturers.

While the history of spybaiting is largely mysterious, many believe that it started in the mid to late 2000’s in smaller lakes in Tokyo and surrounding regions. Regardless of the origin, lures with propellers on them began to appear on shelves in Japanese sporting retailers. A large culture of innovative DIY’ers also began adding propellers to existing lures.

In the United States, the spybaiting revolution is picking up steam, with many online and traditional retailers having a hard time keeping the lures in stock. There is a growing range of manufacturers creating silent capture lures, with the most popular being the Spinbait 80 by Realis, though other manufacturers are getting in on the game.

The technique was designed for the pressured and clear waters of lakes in Japan, and translates quite well to lakes in the Midwest. There have been reports of anglers fishing Table Rock, St. Claire, and other Clearwater lakes around the country with some degree of success using spy bait lures. These Japanese tactics are being proven to work here in America.

Stealth is a key factor when fishing with a silent capture lure. As the bait drifts through the water, the propellers spin, causing a small amount of turbulence, and the lure will wobble and then shimmy as the bait falls. Your goal is to make a long cast, beyond your target and allow the bait to the depth you believe the bass to be. Once you’ve hit this sweet spot, simply reel slowly… just fast enough to spin the propellers. You don’t want to waste the bait returning it to the boat, or fish it so slowly that it sinks. You’ll want to play with the lure until you’ve become comfortable with it, and find a speed that works best.

If you have access to some open water (and I know that this winter has been brutal), it might prove worth your time to pick up a couple of spy baiting lures and give the technique a try. It will require patience and practice, but with that investment will come a surprising reward.