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catching minnows

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I just bought my first minnow trap. I know that you throw a piece of bread in it and put it in the water but I am wondering what water? Do I put it in the lake that I am fishing or do I have to go off site and throw it in a stream or creek?

Thanks in advance for the help!

Jim

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I have always just used it in the lake I'm going to fish (ie the lake our cottage is on). At least you get the forage the fish are used to! One time I got a tiny little pike in there, very cool. I've never looked into the legalities of trapping your own minnows and then using them elsewhere. I'd imagine there would be restrictions to consider.

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well i say i'd be putting it in the lake you are going to fish but if its more then 20min from your house then i say its a complete waste of time. i say just toss the trap in any old creek or pond that you know theres bait fish in and leave it over night with some bread or dog food. i'm pretty sure there are no real regulations for trapping your own bait as long as your gonna use it and not sell it. i'm pretty sure all you need is your name and number on the trap. i find it just easier to go buy minnows or use crankbaits

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BAIT LIMIT NOTES

Baitfish 120

Includes those

caught and or

purchased. See

list of permitted

baitfish species.

Only resident anglers may capture

baitfish, using the methods outlined

below.

One baitfish trap no more than 51 cm

(20 in.) long and 31 cm (12.2 in.) wide

can be used day or night. Bait-fish

traps must be clearly marked with the

name of the user.

One dip-net no more than 183 cm (6 ft.)

on each side if square, or 183 cm (6 ft.)

across if circular, during daylight hours

only (after sunrise and before sunset).

Dip-nets and baitfish traps may not be

used in Algonquin

 

 

rules

Edited by ptmpete

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Creek and beaver ponds are where I've had the most luck. Forget about the bread and use a handful of dog food. Letting them soak overnight is best, but there's a pond near my camp where a couple hours is all you need. There were a couple of times when I left camp and forgot to pull my traps. Five or six days later and I found no minnows but around a dozen crayfish.

 

A buddy told me to put bits of aluminum foil in the trap along with (or even instead of) the dog food. I tried it. Don't bother.

 

Another poster suggested just buying your bait, but I have to respectfully argue trapping your own might be better for you...I know it is for me. When the bass are hitting good in July/August my Father-in-law can go through more minnows than I'd care to pay for. I like using minnows between 4 and 5 inches long for big SMB...between the two of us, we could easily go through 6 or 8 dozen that size in a three day period. How much would 8 dozen five inch chub or shinner cost at your local bait shop? I'd rather spend that money on more beer. Also, bringing live bait from town is kind of a hassle when you can just get it once you're at camp.

 

One final reason I like to trap my own bait is that it's kind of fun. It's fishing, really. I get a little sense of aniticipation when I'm pulling in a minnow trap, wondering whether or not I'll get a good haul. When it's full of perfect sized bait you get a little rush almost like you do when you land a decent fish.

 

BTW, there are two commonly available models of minnow trap. They are nearly identical in design, except that one is made from small gauge uncoated wire, and the other from a slightly heavier gauge wire, which is then coated in some kind of rubber or plastic. The uncoated model is, in my experience, far superior. if you want a really good trap, ask a commercial trapper to sell you one of his homemade ones. They're twice as large and catch 4 times the minnows.

 

Have fun and good luck.

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I use bread soaked in a scent like vanilla extract in mine, that way it leaves a strong scent trail. Also put the bread in a stocking type material tied in a bag shape, then tie that with two strings so it's centered in the trap. Helps prevent them from just eating the bread from outside of the trap:)

 

 

Just my 2 cents

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A bait bag made from roe mesh, stuffed with bread is the ticket. It doesn't fall through the bottom of the cage as it dissolves.

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I have always just used it in the lake I'm going to fish (ie the lake our cottage is on). At least you get the forage the fish are used to! One time I got a tiny little pike in there, very cool. I've never looked into the legalities of trapping your own minnows and then using them elsewhere. I'd imagine there would be restrictions to consider.

 

The regs say you can't dump live minnows OR the water they are from in another body of water..

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Tuna flacoured tender vittles are my bait for minnows. It sinks, and doesn't dissolve like bread does, and stinks bigtime. I find the afternoons to be the best time for them too. I used to leave them over night, but if I put it out in the morning, then come back after lunch, its usually got enough minnows for a few trips. I keep them in a big cooler with a bubbler in my basement, they last forever in there too. I prefer dace, they live longest.

 

Sinker

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In my experience, stale bread works fine in a minnow trap and larger pieces won't wash out even in a creek current.

 

If you're going to use a steel mesh trap, which is usually a bright metal colour, spray paint it flat black. In my experience, you'll catch more minnows, and faster.

 

In some places a square dip net on a pole works really well (and gives you almost instant success), the kind on curved metal rods, one to each corner. Tie some wet bread in place in the center with a piece of blasting wire or something similar. Chum a little with some dissolved bread.

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I use bread (stale pieces or crusts) .. make sure to set it parallel to the shoreline or bank .. I like to set it in creeks against some big boulders or beside fallen trees

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I do better with the galvanized trap. My black one sucks in comparison.

 

Interesting! Different minnows or different conditions I guess.

 

A friend and I set minnow traps in the same pool of the same creek a few times. When we checked, his would be full and mine almost empty. The only difference was that his was black. So I painted mine black and I started getting good catches too. This was for mostly daces and chubs, if I recall correctly.

 

If you have both colours, you could run an experiment, by placing them side-by-side! :D

Edited by Jocko Point Jonny

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Regarding minnow traps, I believe you require a dip net license of some sort and traps can not be set just anywhere. Commercial fisheremen who have minnow harvesting lincenses and trap lines for a group of small lakes and swamps do exist. I think anyone who is thinking about setting a dip net should inquire about this at their local MNR.

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Regarding minnow traps, I believe you require a dip net license of some sort and traps can not be set just anywhere. Commercial fisheremen who have minnow harvesting lincenses and trap lines for a group of small lakes and swamps do exist. I think anyone who is thinking about setting a dip net should inquire about this at their local MNR.

 

 

All that is required is a regular fishing licence.

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General fishing regulations page 7. It is illegal to catch fish using nets or traps. It is illegal to sell the catch unless you have a fish bait license.

 

Note that I may be reading this wrong. But do check it out.

 

WHere I use to live in Red Lake the local bait suppliers had groups of lakes and swamps assigned to them where they could set traps and would get very irate when they came across other traps and would stalk you in the bush and confront you with the traps. Serious business up there.

Edited by guppy

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Commercial bait licenses are sold in blocks of territory and at times the trappers may have a problem with other commercial guys poaching their area if it's a good one. Fishing for personal bait can be done anywhere and maybe these guys don't like it but they can't stop you. Don't fish for bait with one of the big commercial traps unless you have a dealer's license, size restrictions for personal traps are in the regs and they have to be labelled with your name etc. If you're in an area that's being worked by a commercial bait fisherman, I'd suggest you don't leave a trap unattended as it may go missing. When I had a bait license, I never messed with personal traps, but it happens sometimes. Regulations also explain about sizes for dip nets and seine nets.

Edited by Bob

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