Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Magic Worm Blower. There is an old fisherman’s trick with night crawlers. You put a split shot about 12-18 inches back from a hook, you then put on a night crawler of part of one and cast it out. Your line sinks but the bait floats and suspends off the bottom by what ever distance you set the weight back from your hook.
This trick is used a lot in lake fishing for trout but it works well on many species, like bullhead catfish, bluegills and really anything that you generally catch on a worm.
When I was a kid this really was an old timers trick and the method involved using a hypodermic needle, as no products like the Magic Worm Blower existed. As the technique became more well known (old timers teach grand kids and kids blab) specific products like this came to market.
Let me say you absolutely can use a needle, I did for years, but you have to buy them by the box and one or two of these will last several seasons of use.
Other than the standard use I want to relay a few innovative ways I have used this simple technology to catch fish when others failed. Here are three examples.
One night my uncle and I were fishing on a lake called Tuscora in central PA. Nothing was biting so we defaulted to gigging frogs. All of the sudden in a cove we heard ton of surface action. We tossed lures, top water baits all at the sounds and nothing, to this day I don’t know what was being fed on. I put a #6 eagle claw though the neck of a big night crawler, puffed him up, no weight at all, lobed him at the sounds in the dark. About a minute later our first hook up, a really big crappie. We boated about 25 that night, all really big ones, I have never done well on crappie with worms but in this instance it worked.
Some years later as a teen I was fishing some small ponds in summer. These were ponds stocked every year for “trout rodeos” where kids come fish for prizes. They put in some really big ones, of course all the dumb fish were fished out within weeks. All that remained were huge rainbows. I watched over an over these fish rise, take some fly or emerging fly and descend. Even the floating worm was ignored.
On a hunch I ran to local bait shop and got some meal worms. I put a very small #12 hook in ones tail, again no weight, a puff of air and tossed him just past the weed line. Over the next hour I caught 6 rainbow trout the smallest of which was 17 inches long.
Last one, I was fishing a creek that had also been stocked with trout. This was another mid summer thing. The creeks get low and very clear. The hold over trout are extremely wary of people and will literally dart away as you approach them.
The woods are also thick and over grown an even with wading casting can be a chore. In general the fish look up stream so you usually approach from down stream and cast ahead and drift back. There was this one hole, full of brown trout and just no way to get to it from down stream. I would watch fish rising but could never get close without spooking them.
So on goes a puffed up night crawler with a very small float so I can see where it is going. I got as close as I could and drifted floating worms down to the pool, BAM! Again I went home with a stringer long after most people give up on trout for the year.
And I could keep going, I have done the meal worm thing for big bluegills along weed line edges, took tons of small mouths with the conventional rig in slow moving holes in the Susquehanna river and more. The key with tools like this is to be creative, think beyond the one secrete trick, that ironically everyone knows.
So consider adding the Magic Worm Blower or a similar product to your fishing gear today. I have eaten well many nights because of this simple tactic of inflating bait.
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P.S. – You can use a needle, if you have them already for other reasons (like insulin) or know someone who does. BUT this actually is a better solution. The needle is not quite as sharp or long, I am more comfortable with kids using this on and adults are less likely to go though the worm with it too.