Most folks that load their boats for a bream-fishing trip toss a tube of crickets in, hoping the top doesn’t come off.
Although he might fish crickets if he’s after bluegill, fishing guide Eddie Halbrook never uses them for chinquapin.
“Bluegill eat insects, and chinquapin eat mussels,” he explained. “That\’s why they\’re called shellcrackers. To me, a big old piece of worm is a lot like a piece of mussel, and a chinquapin will bite it a lot quicker than they will a cricket.”
Halbrook noted that he wasn’t saying chinquapin would not eat crickets, because he has caught them on crickets before; rather, he just feels he can attract more bites in a shorter time with a piece of cold worm.
“And Grand Bayou has a lot of mussel shells out there on the sides of those points,” he explained going. “One of the reasons I like the drop-shot is because I can feel when that weight is dragging over the top of a pile of mussels.”
In fact, Halbrook has marked several of these mussel beds on his GPS and returns to them frequently whenever he heads out to fish chinquapin.
“When you feel a pile of those mussels with your drop-shot,” he said, “you can expect a pile of fish to be close by, and they ain’t looking to eat a cricket.”