Blueys article by John Staten
Blueys are known as such for obvious reasons but the correct name for this fish is the Pacific Saury. They have dark blue backs and silvery flanks, dotted with random blue blotches.
Blueys have a reputation for being far oilier than fish baits such as mackerel and herring and they do look like a cross between a mackerel and a garfish. They are found all over the Pacific from Japan to the Gulf of Alaska.
They don't really smell of anything in particular other than vaguely fishy, but they do give off a lot of oil when you cast them out however. The one thing about blueys is that your hands get covered in the oil believe me when baiting up. They are one of those baits you are either going to love or hate! I have mates who have used it and swore never again, while others wouldn't use any other fish bait now.
As has been mentioned the real key to the success of this bait is its oil content. Mackerel strips or chunks can wash out within 15 minutes or so in a good tide run. The advantage of using these fish as bait, is that it carries a much higher amount of oil. The oil from a bluey has a far greater viscosity than mackerel or herring and as such remains in the flesh and washes out slower making it far more effective as a bait when using baits of an equal size. Once you cut into a bluey you will instantly see what all the fuss is about. They certainly have more oil in them than any other fish I have ever used for bait.
Blueys have been mentioned a lot in the angling press and of course this brought it to the attention of the Pike fishing guys. They have had great results using it and it has become a main stay along with other dead baits.
Another advantage blueys have, is it's body shape. It's very similar in shape to the garfish, you can cut straight through the body to create a streamlined bait which is easy to present on the hook and is streamlined enough for long range casting. It's an easy shape for other predators to take whole and even the full length body with the head and tail cut off to create a really big bait will cast a long way.
Rays, Dogfish and Whiting particularly seem to be attracted to blueys as bait. I have had good results with them, especially for Rays, fishing the south east / south coast. It's a cracking bait to use for conger!
I usually cut a section of body off about 3-inches long and you will probably find the same as me, they are better as a single large bait on the hook as they are a bit on the soft side to use as a small tip bait. Cast as far as you can when fishing for Rays from the shore and be prepared to play the waiting game.
All Rights Reserved Copyright 2010 www.seafishingbaituk.co.uk for Blueys