There are many companies producing scents that claim they attract bass. Some claim their scents tantalize the taste buds of bass; others claim to excite bass into feeding because of hormones. I have used many different brands of scents and many different soft plastics that have the scents baked into the plastic. I just can’t bring myself to believe that they do more than enhance the anglers confidence level when it comes to attracting bass.
When I read an advertisement for a new scent or attractant, the first thing that comes to my mind, is it oil or water based. As we all know, oil and water will not mix. For a bass, to smell a product, it will have to pass through the nostrils and be detected. Think of it this way, we can smell different things because that smell mixes with the air and is passed through our nose. Can you smell if your nose is in the water? Same for a bass, the nostrils work with water born biological items such as grass, dirt, other fish, or blood to name a few.
In my many years of bass fishing, I have to admit there were times that I didn’t believe I could catch a bass if I didn’t use brand X fish attractant. If I were to cast a jig or soft plastic, without brand X, I just knew I wasn’t going to get a bite. In my experience since, I have developed the theory that these fish attractants only mask unnatural smells. With the product clinging to the bait, any biological debris on the bait cannot be released to the water.
However, all that said, it is my belief that scents or attractants do help anglers catch more bass. It’s not because it’s a magic potion that makes bass instantly get hungry, or puts them in a trance that forces them to eat; it’s the angler. If scents and attractants cause you to have more confidence in a bait or presentation then you’re more likely to work the bait at a proper speed, depth, and action that will produce a strike. If you are casting something that you don’t have confidence in, you will work it quickly all the while thinking that I need to switch baits. If having a scent or attractant on your bait catches you more fish, by all means, most definitely use them.
For me, scents and attractants do still have a purpose. That purpose is to create a slippery bait. One that will not stick to limbs, vegetation or debris. I have found that the jelly type scents will help me with a quieter presentation when working pads or think vegetation; allowing the bait to slip through to the water without having to do much shaking.
Just a smell to ponder on!
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