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i live next to lake erie and recently there has been a lot of dead shad(3-4 inch fish) washing up. i have collected some of them and cut them up into little pieces so that i can use them for trapping next year but i don't know if they will work. if some of you experienced trappers could give me some input i would gladly appreciate it. thank you!!!!!!!!!
 

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Yes they will work for bait, I would try to get the fresher of them instead of rotten though. I freeze fish for bait, just put it in plastic containers or zip lock bags as many as you'll need at a time. 3-4 inch fish wouldn't need much cutting up.

I wouldn't pick up more than 50 at a time, I think thats the limit on baitfish
 

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While it will attract them to a degree, I feel there is such a thing as too rotten. I remember years ago, when I used to trap, I had a brilliant idea to grind up some trout into paste and let them it sit out in a container for a few days in the sun. Caught one coon on that rancid mix vs about 8 on fresh, just thawed out of the freezer trout.
 

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When I was young I use to live near a private hatchery and I would get some of the trout that had died and cut them up for bait amd froze them. I used it for coon and mink and it worked for me. I always took the ones that had thier color instead of the pale ones. If it is rotten I think you would get more skunks and opposums.
 

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Fresher has always been better for me. Chop them up then lay the pieces out individually on a cookie sheet and freeze them. When frozen put them all into a container and when you go to use them they wont be stuck together in one big clump.
 

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I have never used fish, fresh or otherwise, for coon.

Some trappers report having good success when using canned fish like jack mackerel bought at discount stores.

When I chose to target a raccoon, I often used a deep dirt hole set with one ounce of fish oil poured directly down the bait hole.

Other times I used a charred ear of field corn tossed in the hole.

I do not know if a three or four inch fish would have enough substance to throw off much of an odor.

Good luck.
 

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grind them up and mix in some honey and peanut butter. makes a nice paste and works good on coon and grey's.
 

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I used to use sardines... but that was a long time ago and the price was right.
 

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I use salted bluefish for coon bait.Salting keeps it fresh smelling without using freezer space.Cut into bait sized chunks and layer salt between each layer of fish and cover.I use cleaned out spackle buckets since I have unlimited supply of them from work.I wouldn't use stuff that is too rotten though
 

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This year i am going to whip up my own bait , cheap fish flavored cat food , fish oil , mixed all together to get a paste , may add a little something else to the mix like a Castor or essence of some sort ......

But i will also be using fresh fish cubed up , Jack Mack , sardines in oil ...

I mix it up alot with bait and lure ...
 

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A few years back, a buddy and I chunked up 40 gallons of salted carp, shot the night before. I have yet to catch a coon on that stuff. Washed the salt off a bit in the stream and place in pocket and it smelled fishy like it should, but I caught more on commercial bait and sardines in oil. I might pull it out again, i've got 4 five gallon buckets of that salted carp just sittin around.
 

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never thought of freezing fish in chunks on wax paper then storing them once frozen in containers, that solves that problem of leaving them thaw the night before (which I always forget to do)
 

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NOTHING, and I mean nothing works better than fried chicken wing bones... after you have eaten the meat. No joke, they will get into them 1-2 hours after they are out. Not much cheaper than that.
 

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NOTHING, and I mean nothing works better than fried chicken wing bones... after you have eaten the meat. No joke, they will get into them 1-2 hours after they are out.
I have no doubt of this.

As a kid, I used slop foods from the local greasy spoon as skunk bait in my cubbies. Best bait for those critters I ever used.

I further have no doubt such bait would work on coon.
 

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critterslayer,I use a good lure to get them to my pockets first.The bait is to keep them around to get caught.I think the higher the population of coons the better they respond to any bait or lure.If you have a lower population,finding food is easy,and lures will work better out of curiousity.May be the reason why your carp didn't work well.In the Midwest, they hammer coons on carp,but theres also a ton of coon
 

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In my experience, rotten fish holds little attraction to coon in the summer and fall months. In the dead of winter though, rank, rotten baits do work to a degree since coon scavenge more when times are tough.
 
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