How To Book June
Martin Bowler Bait

Martin Bowler's top 5 caster tips and tricks

5 of the best caster tricks you'll ever read...

1. The right time
“Casters work all year round but they are really at their potent best in autumn and winter. On many venues carp seem to switch off from boilies and pellets completely during this period but that doesn’t mean they’re not feeding. Experience has taught me that a blank is often not down to incorrect location but offering a food source that a fish is unwilling to eat at that stage of the year.”

2. Keep them cold!
“Take your Tupperware and damp newspaper boxes to the bank in a coolbox as well as a riddle. If the session is 48hrs then no further attention is required but once beyond this point repeat the process described to your left to keep them alive and in the best condition.”

3. The winning combo
“Hemp and caster are the strawberry and cream of the angling world. Some combinations just go together and these two certainly do. I would use the hemp on a 2:1 ratio but only add the seed and its liquid to the casters as I feed them! Remember: casters are alive although they might not look like it.”

4. Small fish-proof 
“Casters are small fish-proof, well to a point. Whether it’s the hard shell or lack of movement, casters will often avoid the unwanted attention that maggots get. For a hookbait it’s best to work on the cluster principle, i.e. multiple casters because if the mouthful is too big to be taken into the back of the throat and crushed then they’ll be left alone. It might amaze you to know, but I often superglue three or four casters onto a Hair and themselves and fish in this manner. The solvent in the glue that gives it a smell evaporates if left exposed to air for a short while and I’ve never found it to put fish off! Don’t forget to dry the casters before trying to glue them!”

5. Go fake
Artificial casters won’t be eaten by silver fish and perch! During the spring I use the Drennan versions extensively for tench and I can honestly say I’ve only ever caught a smaller species than this once in all the years of using them, often over beds of maggots! Quite why I can only guess but I believe everything is relative to size and a roach sees things very differently to a carp; to them they are clearly pieces of rubber when inspected. To the carp it’s just part of a big mouthful. So if you’re worried, go fake.”

Signup to Carpology

Get CARPology's Newsletter, your no-nonsense briefing on all the biggest stories in carp fishing, in your inbox every Monday morning.