Carp Rig Camouflage Tackle
There’s currently a huge trend in carp fishing to camouflage all the rig’s end tackle components, but is it really necessary, is a carp’s vision that good?
I remember when I first started fishing for carp down our local lake, we would use anything available in the tackle box to create our basic carp fishing rigs. There was none of them dung-coloured leads or silt-coloured rig components at all, yet we used to catch carp on a regular basis, so why the need to change now?
Maybe there are other things to consider in the whole outlook here and not only to do with carp’s vision. At a time before the huge explosion in carp fishing popularity, carp may have been able to easily see the odd bits of end-tackle, but because there was less pressure from anglers it didn’t spook them at the time. As time has passed, carp have become wise at the dangers and started to learn that these bits are all part of a dangerous situation, therefore they started to move away as soon as they seen any sight of these regular, suspicious components. As a result, carp fishermen today have had to adapt by learning to cover our end bits in order to continue catching carp.
It’s well known that carp have brilliant eyesight, even better than ours according to some research. Their sight has needed to adapt to the murky, dark waters of the bottom of lakes and ponds, and as a result, they can easily see small items even in low light conditions.
Because carp have such good eyesight, we do need to think about how to cover the main parts of our end tackle before casting in the basic fishing rigs. This is especially true in gin-clear waters, where carp will rely heavily on sight over their other senses. Some will easily spot a loose hook sitting on the bottom of the bed along with the boilies, and may be the reason why we always seem to get more takes when using smaller, lighter hooks, and a higher number of runs using thinner main lines.
I think that in some waters which are dark in colour, we may be able to relax and worry less about camouflaging our end-tackle components, but generally it’s a good practice to keep up, it also adds additional skills to our carp fishing methods.
Another time when I believe rig camouflage will be needed less, is when we are able to get the carp feeding confidently, or after creating a carp feeding frenzy. This is a time when all the fish will become pre-occupied with walloping down the food items before their neighbour gets to the food first. Therefore, in fishing situations like this, elaborate camouflaged tackle will not be necessary as much. This does go to explain why some beginners using really terrible looking fishing rigs can catch some good carp – just like I did when I first started!
There are some angling tactics that can help cover up your rigs. One is to use a ground bait that causes dark clouds as the fish swim around and feed on it. If you manage to get some fish into the area and feeding confidently, even if it’s nuisance or smaller fish, you’ll stand a better chance that when the carp arrive they won’t see any end tackle parts of the rig and spook away from the area. The huge numbers of fish bodies surrounding them whilst feeding, or the clouds of silt and particle bait causes heavy clouds which hinder a carp’s vision.
Creating fishing situations where carp cannot rely so heavy on sight is another good sign of effective carp angling. Fishing in silt for example, is a good tactic because most carp will just dive into the black stuff and sift around for food items. Having a rig placed inside silt can produce results and make it hard for carp to adapt to this type of fishing tactic. For this reason, I believe targeting the bigger carp in silt is one of the best tactics to use when fishing on very clear lakes!
I always do try my best to cover up any end tackle and try to blend them into the colour of the lake bed. I like to test every rig in the margins and see what shows up easily and then looking for ways to disguise the problem. Once I’m happy with the colours I’ll cast it into the swim hoping to trick a carp into capture. Getting into the practice of covering up your end tackle rig components can result in big rewards for a little extra effort!