Pellets. There are many types of pellet available - Trout pellets, Carp pellets, Salmon pellets, micro's, breakdown pellets, response pellets, ball pellets, soft hooker pellets, expander pellets and the latest additions of Halibut and Hi Betaine pellets. The sizes available are also quite considerable, starting at micro (around 2mm) right up to 22mm.
We are spoilt for choice in the flavour stakes too, no more trout or salmon flavour only. Now we can choose from old favourites such as Strawberry, Nutty and Tutti Frutti, and ranging through out and out naturals such as Monster Crab, Bigfish, Squid & Octopus, Corn Steep Liquor and finishing with the new generation of flavours such as Activ-8 and Assasin-8 to name just a few.
To prepare pellets for fishing, first add some pellets to a bait box then add water you can also add a flavour mix (make sure you follow recommended doses of flavour) and stir it round. Soaking them in water for a short while not only ensures that your offerings sink but it can also allow you to use them on the hook. The water breaks down the hard outer shell and absorbs the water, swelling and opening the pellet slightly. The longer you soak them the softer they get. The length of time for soaking depends on the size, too long and they will be too soft for hook-bait.
An alternative method is to use a bait-band for holding the pellet on the hook, this works best when using floating pellets for surface feeding fish.
If you intend to use the larger sizes on a hair-rig then the best way to flavour these is to add your neat flavouring to a plastic bag, rub the bag together well to coat the inside. Put in a few handfuls of pellets, blow up the bag and shake well. Then just let the air out and give the pellets a rub to coat evenly. If using a powdered flavouring, add a small quantity of water at the same time. You can also seal the bag and freeze them.
Pellet Paste can be used to devastating effect on ponds especially during the warmer months. To make the paste you need to soak your selected pellets in an equal amount of boiling water until all the water is absorbed. During this time flavours can be added if wished, try experimenting. Once the water has been absorbed, mash the pellets into a paste and bind them using either ground pellets or an egg white. Icing sugar is also equally effective. Once the right consistency is achieved the paste can be frozen for use later.