Outdoor Skills - Fishing Q&A

Q: My buddy spits on his bass lures for good luck before casting. Is this good or bad? -Chuck Wilson, Indianapolis, Ind.

Field & Stream Online Editors

A: It's only bad if you're standing downwind of him. Seriously, it depends on what he's been eating lately. Spit from a mouthful of chewing tobacco, for example, means he'll catch fewer fish. Bass have an extraordinarily acute sense of smell, and they don't like nicotine. Plain saliva, on the other hand, can actually help. According to researcher Paul Johnson, whose book The Scientific Angler is worth searching for, spit might actually mask other unpleasant (to bass) odors and could even work as an attractant.