Monday, June 20, 2011

There's a Buzz in the Air

Buzz Baits, the loudest, easiest and yet most annoying way to fish top water.   

Maybe it is just me, but the clacking and squeaking blades combined with the constant need to burn a bait back tot the boat gets to me, I don’t fish a buzz bait often enough and I’m missing out on some good fish and some exciting blow-ups.   

Buzz Baits have been around for years and have changes little (depending on who you ask). They are a simple bait, kinda the top water version of a spinner bait.  

Buzz Baits can be broken into a few categories as I see it..   

 -       Single Blade
 -       Single Blade (with clatter)
 -       Double Blade
 -       Long Shank

All four options have many things in common and a few things that set them apart. The Single blade is just that a bait with a single prop, blade or head. The Prop usually consists of 2 wings made of aluminum to give them that god-awful squeak. Buzz Bait are know to gurgle their way across the water and disturb more water then the average top water bait. 

If you want a little more noise a single blade with a clatter will up the ante by adding a clatter that works similar to the old baseball cards in your spokes trick. As the prop spins the clatter makes contact with the prop/blade and emits a clacking noise.

  For those who want to step it up even further, the double blade buzz baits give the bait more lift (less arm strain) and emit twice the squeaking and twice the water disturbance as a single blade.  

The long shank buzzbait is not as common in my area, and I personally don’t throw one. The long shank gives a fish more time to decide if he wants to pound your bait. The shank can be anywhere from 3inches long to 12inches long. When retrieving a long shank bait the body of the bait passed the through the strike zone after the blade has already passed, and works as it’s own follow-up bait.


Buzz baits are an easy bait to work, you toss it out there and reel it back in,  there is not much technique required and most people can work one with ease. It is almost 100% weedless as the prop works similar to your boat prop and will cut or toss aside any light weed in the area.  As with any top water bait the best thing about it is the strike,  the blow-ups are fierce and after witnessing one, you will quickly be hooked on this style of fishing.  


A steady and fairly constant retrieve is needed to keep  buzz baits afloat.  This can be tiring if done for long periods of time and can cause arm strain. By sliding up to the double buzz, it will have more lift and allow you to slow your retrieve speed.  This will add weight to the bait and you should match your gear accordingly.  

There are a huge number of companies that product quality Buzz Baits, and there are many options available. Look for one in your price range and give it a try.  I personal like to use Booyah Buzz Baits as well as Terminator Buzz Baits, both a re a quality product and hold up well to abuse by hungry largemouth’s

When choosing a bait Look for ones that weigh  in around 3/8 or 1/2oz  and have a flat head similar to a swim jig.  I use three colors when it comes to Buzz Baits.. White, Black and Chartreuse, funny enough those are the exact three colors I choose when spinner bait fishing, so if you are having a hard time choosing a bait, look at your favorite spinner bait color and look for something similar in a Buzz bait. As mentioned above both these baits are similar and can be throw on similar rod and reel combinations. A longer rod at the 7ft mark with a good backbone will allow you to set the hook at a good distance, a fast tip will ensure the bait is not ripped out of the fishes mouth

Buzz Baits are reaction baits, you should know fairly quickly if the buzzbait bite is on. If you don’t get any strikes or blow-ups early, it is time to move on to a new bait. I’m notorious for starting early with a buzz bait but cutting it off quick in exchange for another top water lure or a spinner bait. Similar to Spinner baits, short strikes are common I  use trailer hooks on most my buzz baits to help my hook-up ratios.

When it comes to weather conditions I throw a buzz bait in the morning or evening on calm days (pretty standard top water advice). You can throw Buzz Baits when there is chop on the water, but in my experience the chop negates the motion and sound that draws a fish to the buzz bait. The key to success with these baits is that annoying squeaking sound and the water disturbance.  

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