Everyone knows how to fish with live shrimp, right?
Well, I’ve always taken that for granted, so when a neighbor told me about a recent trip to Grand Isle during which he killed every one of the 25-cent shrimp he had purchased I couldn’t help but laugh.
This guy, who has fished his entire life but never fished live shrimp, said he would dip out a bait and run his hook through the head and all the way through the tail — just like he was fishing dead shrimp.
“I couldn’t figure out what the big deal with live shrimp was,” the man, who absolutely prohibited me from using his name, told me.
That’s when it occurred to me that not everyone knows how to fish live shrimp. Everyone has a first time.
So what’s the secret to keeping a live shrimp alive?
Well, there are two thoughts on the process.
The first is to run the hook right under the horn of the shrimp’s head (being careful not to push through the brain cavity that can be seen through the shell). This will allow the shrimp unfettered movement while keeping it firmly attached to your hook.
Unless, of course, a trout short strikes and bites off the tail.
That brings in the second approach: Hooking the shrimp through the last section of the tail.
So, again, the shrimp can swim freely. And with this tactic you don’t have to worry about pushing the hook through too far back on the shrimp’s head.
Either way, it’s better than hooking it like you would fishing crickets with worms.
As my neighbor said, running a hook through the length of a shrimp can get awful expensive — if fishing live shrimp is the key to the bite.