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Does Lure Color ACTUALLY Matter?

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I always found for rocks you need to get the right size/shape in the right place/speed/direction to piss them off.

For drum and specks I found color makes a big difference. A change from mud to electric can make a huge difference. Just two days ago had nothing on electric, I switched to old school white and had more pups than I could count (same tide, drift, size)

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When tons of fish are feeding on anything it doesnt....when they are picky it totally does...many nights i have been out and had the same plug as a buddy but we had different colorways....one of us caught the other one not a sniff

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I feel like you really see the importance of color when targeting fish that are highly concentrated, and when you fish in those same concentrations day after day.  That is something hard to reproduce when targeting top predators like striper or musky.  Crappie, on the other hand, you can find in concentration day after day.  There is no doubt in my mind the difference a color change can make.  That being said, a lot of crappie fisherman have two or three go-to colors that work in most situations.  I do too.  But, after thousands of fish, I have a few bits of anecdotal evidence that are hard to refute.  At least for me. 

 

I found crappie this spring that were killing the bobby garland ice out color.  I sat on a root and caught hundreds over the course of three weeks.  If I got tired of catching crappie I would put on the bobby garland hologram ghost and start killing the white bass.  I wouldn't change jig heads.  I wouldn't change float depth.  i wouldn't change anything except color.  For days on end this played out in exactly the same way.  change colors= change fish species altogether.  It is the strangest "lure color matters" example that I have.  Both colors have worked for both species on many occasions in the past.  

 

If I fish a hide on a lake for crappie and catch most all there is to catch, I can almost always make a drastic color change and pull the last few fish off the hide and the first bite will often be immediate.  

 

I live on an incredible hybrid (wiper) lake and have several instances where a color change produces fish but I do have a lot more anecdotes where a presentation change produced fish. 

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I'd have to say "Yes."

Some days (or hours) a white head and yellow feather jig, for example, may catch more fish than a lime or zombie green head and white or yellow feather jig, or the other way around, with the same presentation.

Sometimes a "natural" color or pattern lure won't catch as many fish as a red and white or other color combination not found in nature, or the reverse, again, with the same presentation.

 

If color didn't matter, all artificials would be the same color ... unless you're factoring in catching the fisherman (or woman) and their money, of course.

Though to be honest, Sometimes I think the wilder colors and color combinations are more to catch the eye of the fisher, than the fish.

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6 mins ago, C.Robin said:

It's mostly to catch fisherman, but I can see it making a difference in really clear and calm conditions. 

Heck, at least for me white, yellow or chartreuse normally outperforms black or natural patterns in dirty stained water too.

 

I think it's fair to say that color/shade absolutely matters at least some of the time.

Edited by Sandbar1

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On 8/1/2020 at 8:01 PM, Southcoastphil said:

Hi George,

 

I'm playing around with some scraped & sanded clear Mambo Minnows so I'm keen to learn more about your results with clear plugs (and any tips/ideas you care to share).

 

I love the idea of the foil (although it seems like a PITA to do).  What size hole do you use?

 

TIA for your help.

True story: the foil Bomber was a mustard color originally. I had gotten a half dozen mustard Bombers to check out bassmaster’s theory of hues, but couldn’t catch a fish on any of them. I gave the rest away and sanded that one back. 
 

The foil was a pita and I don’t think it is worth the time. If I was going to do it again, I would just drop a bottle of glitter into the oil. I had sanded that plug intending to put a coat of nail polish on it to add a shine, but didn’t get around to it. I hit it with some nail polish this evening and the polish does take some of the haze of the sanding out. 
 

The clear one was a chrome painted color and I just flicked the paint off with the tip of a knife. Bombers are painted, then clear coated, and the paint sticks better to the clear coat. It just takes some patience. I don’t like the scale pattern on the insert Bombers and will scrape that off once it starts to chip. 
 

The top one was painted twice before I sanded it back. It caught with each paint job. When the lip broke off, I used it as a topwater. 

While this stuff is fun and all, I don’t think the effort brings a commensurate return. I see the point in loading and I peg the weights into the rear of SP’s, but the rest of my playing has been for my own vanity. 

 

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I think color does matter but how much compared to other variables I'm not sure. I've seen the same lure being used and green was catching but any other color wasn't.

Who knows what the fish actually see or what is triggering a strike. I carry a variety lures and some basic colors and switch it up.

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