For about a year, saltwater fishermen have been using Egret Baits’ Vudu Shad to put fish after fish after fish in the boat.
The 3-inch, ¼-ounce and 4-inch, 3/8-ounce models are tapping the triple crown of speckled trout, redfish and flounder consistently, primarily in shallow flats and bays in inshore waters, as well as over reefs and in the surf. The 5-inch, ¾-ounce and 6-inch, 1-ounce baits are sticking fish in near-offshore and offshore waters.
What’s more, bass fishermen are using the two larger sizes to catch striped bass, and the biggest Vudu Shads have been effective in the Northeast around New Jersey.
Ken Chaumont of Lake Charles, CEO of Egret Baits and a veteran in the artificial lure manufacturing industry, said he and others who contributed to the design were counting on the soft plastic to “really go after a much broader saltwater market.”
With its “Tough As Hell” TPE (thermoplastic elastomers) body, it’s following in the ultra-successful, fish-catching footsteps of the Original Vudu Shrimp.
Beach bite bait
In mid-July, Chaumont was well aware just how well the 4-inch Vudu Shad was triggering a speckled trout bite along the beach at Johnson Bayou in southwest Louisiana.
“We’re getting some good beach activity on the 4-inch because you can throw it a mile,” he said. “When the tide’s way up and they’re in the first gut, I think it’ll be a good surf bait, probably the best surf bait we’ve built. It has done very well in the surf.”
Plus, he said, the 4-inch bait is expected to get larger speckled trout to bite when the water’s a little bit cooler this fall.
What each of the four Vudu Shads have going for them — in addition to the TPE — is the serrated rear portion of the body with a nylon mesh weave and a boot tail that adds lift and thump to the soft plastic. Chaumont said that lift is a key to keeping the 3-inch model up in the target zone in the shallows, 2 feet of water or less.
Vudu Shad are well-armed. The 3-inch model has a 1/0 2X strong saltwater-grade hook. The 4-inch model has the same hook in 3/0 2X; the 5-inch a 5/0 and the 6-inch a 6/0.
The call to build a big, soft-plastic shad originated a few years ago in New Jersey, Chaumont said. His biggest distributor there and fishing guides worked with him on the design. “Up there, they throw bigger baits,” he said.
Several prototypes followed the first; pre-rigged soft plastics must be precise, and this was no exception. Once Egret had the desired look, natural action and appeal, Vudu Shads hit the market six months later, in 2019. The bait was an instant hit in the Sportsman’s Paradise.
“Ninety percent of the 3- and 4-inch sales are in the South — the Gulf Coast from Tampa to Corpus Christi,” Chaumont said. “What comes out of Louisiana sweeps across to Texas and Mississippi, all the way over to Florida, real quick,” he said. “We (Louisiana anglers) have so many miles of marsh and estuaries. We have so much developing ground to prove a bait.”
For more information on the Egret Baits Vudu Shad and other Egret Baits products go to www.egretbaits.com.
JOIN THE CLUB, get unlimited access for $2.99/month
Become the most informed Sportsman you know, with a membership to the Louisiana Sportsman Magazine and LouisianaSportsman.com.