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Lug Worm

Lug Worm

Lug Worm article by John Staten

lugworm (graphic)                                                                                                                                         

Lugworm comes in different guises:
Blow / Common Lug - Black Lug - Yellow Tails / Runnydowns

Whichever type of lugworm you use, they are probably the most favourite cod bait to use in the winter months.  Along a large part of the British coast line, cod will look at very little else apart from the beginning and end of the 'cod season' when they will feed on Peeler Crab.  That doesn't mean you have to fish them entirely on their own. They do make an excellent cocktail bait, teamed up with most other baits, especially with the likes of squid and mussel.  Lugworm tipped with a bit of Mackerel or Herring is a great bait for Whiting.

Black lug can be frozen down but blow lug isn't worth the bother in my opinion.  A lot of debate does go on about the merits of both frozen and fresh blacks, but to be honest I'm happy using both and have no preference.  Too many times I have seen each out fish the other.

Blow lug is probably the most common of the worms found around our shores.  Blow lug tend to be very watery and they are pierced very easily when threading on to a hook.  This is the main reason I always use a baiting needle.  They are worth their weight in gold in my opinion.  I use them for all types of worm and highly recommend you do the same, they make the job far easier and help you present the bait a lot better without it being full of holes before you cast out.  As I stated, blowlug are very watery and if you keep pushing a hook through the side of them while baiting up then they are going to wash out very quickly when in the water.

Blow lug can normally be found down near the low water mark and the lower the tide, (spring tides) the more worm casts you should find.

lugworm cast (image)

As you can see in the drawing above the cast consists of a blow hole and sand cast.  The blow hole is the head end of the worm and the cast is the tail end of the lugworm where it expels the sand after it has travelled through its body.

The distance between the two can be a good indicator to the size of the worm underneath.  It can be very hard to decide which way the lug worm is lying when you have numerous casts in a worm bed.  If that is the case, a lot of diggers 'trench dig', which is exactly that, digging a trench across the worm bed and back filling as you go.

It can lead to more cut worms but you will probably uncover more worms using this method, rather than trying to dig each individual cast.  

Blow lug can be plentiful, the same as most worms in the summer, but harder to find in the winter as they will go well out below the low water mark due to the more severe weather and rough seas we get. They will also probably be deeper in the winter, I usually only dig down one spade depth for my worms but in the winter you will more than likely need to dig down at least two spade depths.

When lugworm is deeper it is obviously more protected from being scoured out by a heavy sea.

I did talk there about a 'spade depth' and that is the instrument that I prefer to use but a lot of guys use a fork for blow lug, as always, it's a personal choice.

Black Lug / Welsh Lug / Dungie Lug

Black lug is a most sort after bait especially in the winter, accounting for many a cod caught around our shores, plus other species as well. Most anglers class big black lugworm as one of their main baits for winter cod fishing.

Black lug are nearly always 'pumped' and not dug from the beach. For most black lug you need a good 'low' tide to be able to access the worm beds.  A 'pump' can be bought in most tackle shops and also off Ebay.

Black Lug is identified by a cast, but will have no visible blow hole like the Blow Lug. You may see what appears to be a blow hole in the centre of the cast.
If you do buy a pump, watch a few of the video's on ''You Tube'' about how to pump worm.  There are some good vid's on You Tube to watch and get you up and running without having to go sessions without being able to 'pump' properly.  Pumping worm looks easy, and is ONCE you know what you are doing.

There are some good video's on You Tube and this one about pumping lugworm is a good one with some very good safety tips at the start.

Happy fishing.

Author's Resource: Article by John Staten on Lugworm.
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