Want to learn how to fish a chatterbait? This type of fish bait is commonly referred to as a vibrating jig or a bladed swim jig. The fishing world first started noticing it when championship anglers Brett Hite and Bryan Thrift won a series of professional tournaments with it during the late 2000s.
Chatter bait used to be so popular that it would sell like hotcakes when it first came out. However, they’re not as popular as they once were because most anglers no longer even know about this type of bait so it doesn’t sell as well as it used to.
But, bladed jigs have come a long way since then and they’re seeing a resurgence, hence we’re seeing a growing number of people wanting to learn how to fish a chatter bait. They’ve gone through so many improvements that even chatter bait tips have seen a facelift, making them even more effective.
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Professional angler Brett Hite was the first person to put chatter bait on the map when he took the BassMaster Elite in Lake Seminole in 2014.
He followed that win with another W at Lake Okeechobee where he won the FLW Tour. What was most striking about his wins is the fact that he used chatter bait both times.
Since then, Z-man, the creator of chatter bait has upgraded his invention several times giving it a wide range of helpful additions.
As such, the chatterbait jackhammer, for example, offers loads of action and adds more buoyancy and bulk to your fishing adventures. Thanks to these attributes, the chatter bait lure is a sure win.
How to Fish a Chatterbait
If you’re going to use chatter bait on your next fishing trip, you’ll want to follow one of these techniques to improve your chances of success:
Burning requires you to go quicker compared to the chatter bait. The goal is to get the blade to come up just beneath the surface of the water, creating a wake that attracts fish.
Slow rolling is incredibly effective because it gives the fish a chance to react to the bait. The key to this technique is that you have to slowly turn the reels while feeling the thump of the blade as you go along.
Should the run start going to the top then you might need to substitute with a heavier rig or go even slower.
Next, we have the shaking technique. Here, all you have to do is move the rod on the retrieve using an up and down motion. This will cause the bait to jump and down.
The skirt is also likely to flare when you do this. For best results, you should shake the chatter bait in tall grass or even through submerged grass.
If you’re fishing for bass, you’ll do well to rip the bait in order to create a sudden movement or action that’ll get the fish interested.
When reeling the bait in, you’ll want to go slower than that though because the goal then becomes to catch the tops of the grass. Thereafter, you’ll want to quickly flip your wrist in order to rip the bait. It’s a sure-fire way to get bass to bite.
When is the Best Time to Fish a Chatterbait
The best time to fish a chatter bait is when bass are shallow and most active. You can also use your bladed swim jig at different times of the year to angle for bass.
It’s definitely a smart move when facing unpredictable weather patterns through spring, summer, and fall.
To help you figure out how to fish a chatter bait during the different seasons, here are some tips:
The pre-spawn season happens when the warm starts warming up. It’s characterized by a move to spawning flats and coves where the fish can be free to feed in preparation for their spawning rituals.
This is when chatter baits come in. They’re very effective at reeling in the big females during this time of year and getting them to bite. It’s definitely better than lipless crankbaits if you want to set yourself apart from other anglers.
A chatter bait isn’t great for bed fishing per se, but it’s still very effective when used as a search bait.
It’s not a good idea to fish by sigh in stained water or when there’s a lot of grass cover to deal with. A bladed swim jig will make it easier to catch fish in these conditions.
Once spawning season is over, big female bass have been known to move to their normal summer spots which is usually the closest cover available.
You can usually find them in greening grass and around shallow cover when using your chatter bait.
Load your boat and get ready to catch schools of bass, even in the summer. All you have to do is pull the inside back and on the external part of the weed edges.
Remember to roll the bladed jig slowly as though you’re using a spinnerbait. You can even use a heavier bladed jig if you’re angling on shell beds located on ledges.
Bass are known to follow shad up to the shallows during the fall, as submerged weed tops start to develop in reaction to fade leaving holes and dead grass.
What you want in this situation is colorful chatter bait which you can then use to trigger bites by ripping the jib above the top-most part of the weeds you see.
Where to Fish a Chatterbait
In addition to learning how to rig a chatterbait for bass you might as well go ahead and get all the best spots to use your swim jigs.
Here are some of our favorite places on which to take your chatter bait for a spin:
Chatter baits really shine in submerged grass. We’re talking 1 to 6 feet of submersion underwater.
You can even fish the bait on thick grass right at the top of the weeds. For best results, opt for scattered weed growth because bass love using ambush points like lanes and hoes.
You can also use bladed swim jigs to fish for stumps and laydowns.
What you want to do here is to get a feel for the lure but all while making sure that it doesn’t snag. It’s almost like angling a square bill crankbait.
If you need dock baits, then you can’t go wrong with chatter baits. What you want to do is tie your bladed jig in areas with lots of grass growing, especially during the late spring and early summer seasons.
Your goal here is to get the bait skip to take its rightful place atop the water which can be done with help from the flat sides of a Magic Shad or Zako.
Shell beds are prime bass locations during the summer. This is where bass go to hunt mussels, their favorite meal and snack.
To get your fair share of bass here, make sure to crawl your chatter bait by grinding it on the shell bed.
Now that you know what is a chatter bait and how to fish a chatterbait in all seasons, you’re well equipped to become the local champion wherever you take your angling adventures this year.
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