Pinfish Traps

DKDDKD Posts: 371 Officer
Anyone have any luck with pinfish traps?

I fish a local grass flat for trout fairly regularly. You cannot cast a shrimp or piece of gulp without it immediately getting attacked by pinfish. I often reel in my bait and see 4-5 pinfish following it. Anyway, I got a pinfish trap, bait it with cut ladyfish or jacks, and let it soak for a day or 2. Every time I go to retrieve it, there are only a few pinfish in it. It doesn't make sense. I know the flat is loaded with them.

Anyone having success with pinfish traps?


  • Art VandelayArt Vandelay Posts: 418 Officer
    I think the technique is to place the traps on the edge of the grass, just off the flat.
  • Split ShotSplit Shot Posts: 6,095 Admiral
    Check the entrance door to make sure it is nice and narrow, and isolate your bait to the center of the trap. :shrug
  • sparse greysparse grey Posts: 1,743 Captain
    We tie a hook to the top of the trap, hang ballys or cut lady from the hooks (2 or 3). Works well. Possibly letting bait loose in trap floats or moves to edges & pinfish feed from the outside. Possible explanation. Also someone could be helping themselves.
    Ron Conner Release the fish, keep the memories. Once a Knight is enough.
  • DKDDKD Posts: 371 Officer
    my trap has a bait cage in the center on the bottom, so the pinfish have to swim in to get to it. I will try to move it to an edge.
  • fish_stixfish_stix Posts: 1,237 Officer
    Set them in a sandy "hole" in the grass flats. Bait with crushed crab and you'll get pinfish and pigfish galore.
  • SCFD rtrd.SCFD rtrd. Posts: 1,369 Officer
    Right now, the water temperature might have something to do with your limited catch of pin-fish. I usually catch them with a hook and when the water temps are at 70 or 75 they move to deeper water. Try dropping your trap in 5 to 6 feet of water. Just saying.
  • Capt M BrennanCapt M Brennan Posts: 488 Officer
    Don't soak a standard trap too long ... dem little btards are smart and know the way out. When they are full, the smart ones will leave the idiots behind in the trap as they make their escape.

    They do make more complicated ones that are designed to be left out for a week or so without losing bait.
    Captain Mike Brennan
  • RStyleRStyle Posts: 1,222 Officer
    Any suggestions for a good trap or where to buy??
  • PONCEPONCE Posts: 5,943 Officer
    They work very good, the only prob is people cant keep their hands off them :nono
  • NauticalWheelerNauticalWheeler Posts: 441 Deckhand
    RStyle wrote: »
    Any suggestions for a good trap or where to buy??

    These are probably more expensive than some, but they're high quality IMO.

    I put a small non-descript float on them and make sure the float stays under the surface so it takes a GPS to find them unless someone gets within 20 ft of them at idle speed. I got 2 and place them far enough apart so that if someone finds one and steals it, they are not likely to find both.
  • TipboneTipbone Posts: 190 Officer
    I agree with Naticalwheeler, the traps from are quality. I have a cheap Frabil trap I got from Gander and it does not keep the pins so well. a buddy with the other trap, at the same dock, would fill up the trap.

    the best bait is fish scraps or left over buffalo chicken wing bones. for some reason, those pins love hot wings!
  • Panhandler80Panhandler80 Posts: 7,810 Moderator
    You're soaking too long. If you have a diurnal tide, which you likely do, I'd try to check it after 6-8 hours. Here's some other input that I gave a guy a while back on what I"ve experienced wth traps....

    I have used them all of all different sizes, shapes, colors and coatings. None of the differences there seem to matter one iota.

    There is no science to it, but I will say that WHEN they are deployed for a given area is of the utmost importance. Somtimes I'll drop them off the dock and they'll be loaded in half an hour. Sometimes 6 hours later I'll have none. Clearly it's a tide things. I don't know if they just want moving water, or if it needs to be going a differen direction, or what. The lowly chofer (as we call them up here) can actually be a little trickier than people give him credit for. I try to make sure that my traps are out for a full tidal cycle (12 hours here since we're semidiurnal up here) and have always had better luck in daylight hours than over night. Also, if you have multiple traps and a way to deploy one in a little bit different depth, then I woudl recommed that. I usually put one about halfway down the dock, and the other off the end. Almost invariably one will significantly out perform the other.

    Haing good bait helps too. mackeral carcass (or steaks) is always good. As is any other oily fish. Mullet work pretty well. I freeze a lot of our smaller carcasses for bait.

    Oh, another option for trap bait (and something I started doing last year). Dealing with the frozen carcass can be a pain sometimes, especially on the traps with the small doors if the cacass is frozen and is too large. On Thursday or Friday I just carry a cooler to work with me. On the way home just stop at a fish market and see what they have laying around. I started doign this and it"s really a lot easier than anything else. The first time I asked for some help and the guy gave me some. Next time he saw me he jsut said, "You know where they are... help yourself." Now I just pull up around back and walk right into their cooler where all the guts and heads are kept before they go to the dumpster.
    "Whatcha doin' in my waters?"
  • PCFisherPCFisher Posts: 269 Officer
    I always baited mine with the tips of chicken wings. The chicken last longer and I always had a trap full of fish.

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