Most of anglers, particularly bottom technique ones, treat rudd as an unnecessary bycatch, trying to avoid catching them nearly at any cost. I, on the other hand, believe that there is nothing wrong with catching those fish, and sometimes I even to prefer to dedicate the entire expedition to them. What is more, I even worked out a strategy that allows me to catch more of them in shorter amount time.
Rudd are truly marvellous looking fish that does not reach excessive sizes. Despite that, ones that exceed 30 cm of length are capable of showing their unparalleled strength and provide the angler with lots of joy during hauling. One of the most important factors, when it comes to rudd tracking is a proper selection of a right spot. It has to be well exposed to the sun, not too deep and covered with submerged plants. Rudd loves to enjoy the sun, yet remembers about having a quick getaway in range at the same time.
Second, really important factor speaking of rudd angling is gear selection. Those fish are really tiny and fragile, hence a rod that is sophisticated, maybe even delicate, yet well-built at the same time, has to be used. I tend to bet on pickers with 270 to 300 cm of length. In such context, the Black Draft Picker 270 cm and Tsubame 300 cm, both with casting weight up to 40 g, work really well. Tips of those rods perfectly transmit even the slightest baits; blanks deliver an amazing action during a vigorous hauling and sudden escape attempts. I often arm those rods with the Aperio reel that fits them perfectly, with a Crystal fishing line. Size of the line depends on a number of potential underwater obstacles, yet it should stay within 0.16 to 0.18 range.
Choice of flavour and scent of the bait always depends on preferences of fish, that live in a particular reservoir. In case of rudd the texture of the bait plays much more important role. I prefer to pick one of two well tested baiting methods, that I am most familiar with. In first option I fill a feeder with a slightly oversoaked bait in order to reduce pace of its release from the feeder. In a second case I use merge of an oversoaked and half-dry bait. Then I fill the feeder in a following manner: first goes the oversoaked bait, then I add the half-dry mix and I top it all up with an over-soaked bait again. That way the mixture will not get released during casting yet it will immediately start getting released after hitting the water. Besides bait, for rudd angling I also use maggots, that I add to the feeder every few casts and to the hook as a lure.
As I mentioned before, one of the most favourite activities of rudd is enjoying the sun exposure, therefore baits most frequently occur right after the rig hits the water. It is therefore a good idea to get equipped with a rig of a right length, to make sure that the lure will take its time sinking. While making a rudd rig, I choose leaders 70-140cm long. It is an optimal spread for a perfect lure presentation. After the cast is done, I tension the line in such way, that allows me to see everything that is going on at the very end of my rig, so that I can react instantly in case of a bait.
Rudd do not like boredom. They much prefer lively environments. That is why casting and waiting for a bait to come is not the best approach that you can use in such case. In order to keep them in a proper spot, you have to spoil them with some delicacies every now and then. Here, the best idea is to move the rig frequently. I do it every 3-4 minutes. When fish are suspicious and bait in deeper water, where it is hard to keep the bait for longer, it might be a good idea to add some puffed rice (that most of us knows as a delicacy from childhood). That solution will elevate the entire rig and reduce its sinking pace, what will increase chances of attracting the fish.
Rudd are incredibly beautifully coloured fish that have lots of strength hidden in their tiny bodies. That strength can be discovered during strikes and hauling. After all they are not as easy target as it may seem. Frequent strikes of rudd are an outcome of a proper pre-work. Sunny weather that dominated Poland makes it easier to locate their feeding spots and increases chances to have some fun time with them. I do recommend rudd angling to detach yourself from daily activities to everyone. It is worth to try and learn their unusual behaviours and who knows – maybe you will fall for them as much, as I did.
Mikado Fishing Team