Most bass fisherman know that bass like to eat natural looking baits. That’s why you’ll see a variety of greens, browns, and blacks in the worm aisle at your local Bass Pro Shops. They match the colors of worms, crayfish, and all the different things that bass normally eat.
But then you also will find a small section of bright colored worms. Things like chartreuse and even bright pink. Usually called “bubblegum”. What’s the deal with these? They don’t match anything natural a bass would ever see in the wild. Do they actually catch bass?
Yes, pink worms will catch bass. Let’s dig into why they work and under what conditions you should use them.
Pink worms are easy to see
Something many beginning fisherman overlook is that a fish needs to be able to clearly see your bait in order to bite it. Under normal situations, this isn’t that difficult. In murky to clear water, a bass will easily be able to spot most any color of lure.
But if you are fishing a muddy river that looks like chocolate milk – a bass will simply not be able to spot out a green or brown worm. But if you put a bright pink worm down in the water, you’ll probably notice that you can see it much better.
So when you are fishing in any condition where the goal is simply to make sure a bass can see the worm – pink is a good option. That includes things other than just muddy water as well. A local pond near me often puts a sort of algae killer in the water that turns the water dark. I’ve caught several bass on pink worms until the water clears back out again.
Pink worms work great on bass beds
Another time you will want a lure that is easily noticeable is when you fish for bass sitting on beds. When a bass sits on a bed, it is in protection mode. They aren’t going to eat for days, they are just chasing off anything that might get near their unborn babies.
So you don’t really need a lure that looks natural. You need something that looks intimidating, is very easy to notice, and something you can pester a bass into biting to get it out of its bed. Pink is ideal for this.
A wacky rigged pink senko is the ideal bait for bed fishing. Bass will have a great target to hone in on while protecting the bed, and you also will have a greater ability to see your lure. Every bass bed has a “sweet spot”. The one place a bass just can’t stand to have something sitting. So seeing exactly where your lure is hitting is important to make sure you can find it. Having a bright pink worm just helps you in seeing that.
Deep water is great for pink worms
Another situation where the bright pink color works well is in deep water – at least 25 feet deep. Sunlight refracts under the water and slowly diminishes the deeper you go. By the time you get to 20 or so feet, there is little sunlight left in most conditions. Which means seeing becomes much more difficult.
A bright pink colored worm might not look pink anymore to a bass at this depth. But it is still noticeable enough to see, whereas a dark brown, green, or black won’t be. So you lose the unnatural quality of the pink worm but still retain it’s visibility. It’s why it’s a great option for extremely deep fishing.
Water clarity will play a huge part of this scenario. Sunlight will travel much better in clear water than it will in muddy water. So the muddier the water, the more quickly visibility declines. If you’re in gin clear water, pink will be bright pink up to 50 feet. In muddy water, it might lose it’s bright hue after 5 or 10 feet.
Use pink to get reaction strikes
One of the great secrets to catching more bass is to create reaction strikes. SImply put, a reaction strike is making a bass bite a lure solely because it moves quickly near them. THey don’t eat it because they’re hungry, but more because it spooks them or surprises them.
Bass are aggressive predators – and they don’t have arms or other appendages like most animals. So the only way they can show their aggression is with their mouths – and biting or eating is basically how they assert dominance.
Using this to your advantage is how you catch fish that others can’t. You quickly move your lure near areas where you think bass should be and they’ll bite solely out of instinct. And the beauty of a pink worm is the bright color just adds into this reaction. A green worm jumping besides them is not noticeable. But a pink worm? It can spook them right into biting.
Smallmouth especially like pink worms
There isn’t much evidence behind why, but if you ask any northern smallmouth fisherman they’ll tell you that smallmouth just love pink worms.
It seems to stand against reason, as the majority of northern smallmouth fisheries have super clear water where you can see for miles. Why would a bright worm that looks completely unnatural just coax smallmouth into biting? If you have an idea – leave a comment below!
But for whatever reason, pink worms work extremely well. My personal favorite method for this is to use a dropshot with this worm in morning dawn. This mix of purple and pink just seems to drive smallmouth wild. If you find the right school, you can pull in fish after fish.
Other soft plastics work well in pink too
Don’t just try worms in pink – expand to a variety of other soft plastics too.
A bright pink fluke fished right below the surface of the water can be a great fish catcher. Bass will see it from very far away and come rushing to have a bite. Again, murky water is key but it can be fished in any condition.
Even a craw imitation in pink can work – especially if you’re fishing beds. The only bad part of a worm when fishing beds is a bass can bite a lot of the worm without getting a hook in its mouth. With a small craw imitation, a bass has a much easier time getting the whole thing in its mouth, increasing the likelihood of hooking up.
Experiment with anything else and you might be surprised at your results. Experimentation with your local waters is always a key to becoming a great fisherman, and catching those fish that other people just can’t!
There is a reason that worms come in many varieties of browns, greens, and other natural colors. They are usually the best option you can go to and catch fish in almost any condition at any time. But that doesn’t mean you need to limit yourself to only those colors.
Pink has it’s time and place. You’ll be missing out on a lot of bass if you never try it. A great place to start is during the spawn. Try and find some bass sitting on beds and tie on a small pink senko. Toss it right into the bed and pester that bass into biting. Then start expanding out.
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