codfish

Why does the "Ugly Color" work so well

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A friend sent me a picture of his go to color swim bait as you can see he used the one on the right to prove how well it works the one on the left is the same lure but unused, my ? to the Canal sharpies why does this color work so well??  when it is called "the Ugly color":) the back of the lure is olive/brown

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Edited by codfish

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Confirmation bias. 

 

When we have confidence in a plug/jig we fish it more and then we are successful and it confirms the bias we have for that plug. 
 

I have rarely ever had a “jig bite” that showed a distinct color preference. Maybe in 2012-2013 I remember a tide cycle where white jigs were taking 30# class fish in daytime. But again, everyone was just fishing white. I bet chartreuse would have worked or pink. 
 

How much time does a fish have to decide on when/if you strike when jigging the canal? I think it is a small window for large fish. The don’t expend more energy than they take in. 

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There's also a theory that a dull, ugly color that doesn't specificially imitate anything ends up sort-of imitating a lot oif thigs--the various critters that we don't immediately think oif as "bait" but that predators eat on an opportunistic basis.

 

Back in the '70s, the late Leo Cooper, who made the "Goo-Goo Eye" plugs, developed a strange, swirling finish for his "Big Daddy" trolling plug.  The base color was a sort of yellowish-brownish-tan, and that was overlaid with swirls of colors ranging from off-white to brown and even black.  We trolled the things on wire line, and bass and bluefish loved them.

 

The theory was that the plug might look like a bergall (cunner), maybe a bunker, maybe a sea robin or tautog or anyting else that a fish could want to eat. and that in deep, cloudy water, the color pattern was impressionistic enough to suggest just about anything.  I don't know whether the theory was valid or not, but the fish regularly ate the ugly plugs.  I think that I might still have one or two hanging from a wire down in the basement.

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Fish like bunker have a gold sheen to them. Most fish either have a gold or silver sheen. That is what that color represents to fish IMO. 

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Tough to tell how they see color or why they prefer one over another sometimes but there isn’t a color too ugly for striped bass. I made a stubby needle, sprayed it rattlecan brown and named it Turd Furgeson……it catches fish. 051DC496-72B2-4FB7-8099-2F4E7D501429.jpeg.ce1e0b726383497c9cab041096e2b634.jpeg

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On 7/1/2022 at 5:12 AM, codfish said:

A friend sent me a picture of his go to color swim bait as you can see he used the one on the right to prove how well it works the one on the left is the same lure but unused, my ? to the Canal sharpies why does this color work so well??  when it is called "the Ugly color":) the back of the lure is olive/brown

d16e304a-6fb6-4efe-a01b-9dce5cebda30.png

Yikes I might have found the answer "Bunker"

images.jpg

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When I used to pour my own plastics, I'd occasionally throw a handful of various colored scrap pieces into the Pyrex measuring cup I used for melting. I was curious to see if I could come up with one color that bass would absolutely not eat.

I never found that color. They often weren't as productive as my go-to colors, but eventually some bass would scarf one.

And some nights I cleaned house. I figure those were those "they'll eat anything" nights.

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For the longest time, black was the most productive night time color on the canal. Esp if the mold was modified to pour a bait with a fatter profile.

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I’ve convinced myself a few times that bass were keyed in on one color like white only to have someone catch on an off color. I’m not surprised anymore as I now know I don’t have a clue.  
 

I mostly fly fish and whenever I see a lure color that’s new to me I tie something similar. It’s worked out well a few times.

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2 hours ago, bob_G said:

For the longest time, black was the most productive night time color on the canal. Esp if the mold was modified to pour a bait with a fatter profile.

When I first started a black ronz held the record for my PB

I should go back to them one time down.

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12 hours ago, R.R. Bridge Fisher said:

When I first started a black ronz held the record for my PB

I should go back to them one time down.

:th:

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