As mentioned previously in my blog on their day peanuts can be a fantastic bait if used responsibly. However, they can also cause serious health issues to carp when they are used excessively. The very first time I used peanuts, which was on College Reservoir in the early 80s, I wanted to be sure that I was preparing them correctly by reading up everything I could find out about them, mainly from Rod’s book, ‘The Carp Strikes Back’, which also includes a chapter by Dick Caldwell. In the book, Dick comments that nuts could fill carp up very quickly and should thus be used sparingly. Rod, on the other hand, likens peanuts to sweetcorn in effectiveness and also states that they need to be baited heavily, both cooked or uncooked, flavoured or unflavoured.
This conflicting advice was very confusing but I remembered what Tim Paisley and Fred Wilton had written in Carp Fisher 4 about the negative effects of too many peanuts and I found myself somewhat confused? Do I follow Rod or Dick? Two widely differing opinions in the same book…in the same chapter no less! Surprisingly, seeing as Rod was widely accepted as The Man when it came to particles bait fishing, I decided at first to follow Dick's advice. It turned out to be the right decision and I have followed the 'less is more' doctrine regarding peanuts ever since.
My missus with a College carp caught on peanuts.
As for hemp seed, well I had already discovered the magic catching properties of the Wonder Seed back in the 70s and had used it on and off, either on it's own or as part of a seed blend for ages. So it should come as no surprise to you that when I joined Haith's Baits, with their Aladdin's Cave or carp baits at my disposal, naturally I turned to peanut granules and crushed hemp as two baits that would definitely improve my catch rate.
This is a pic of a carp that fell to hemp seed back in the mists of time.
I was such a fan of these two particle baits that when Haith's asked me to put together a couple of recipes for general purpose groundbaits I included them in two of our best sellers. The first of these is SuperRed, a little gem has been around for a decade or more and year on year its popularity increases beyond my wildest dreams.
Of course, there is more to the recipe that just peanut granules and crushed hempseed, and I know many anglers who put the reason for its effectiveness down to the Robin Red content. OK, while you'd be crazy to ignore the red stuff and the part it plays in the success of SuperRed, I still maintain that the micro-sized 'bits' are equally worthy of mention.
Second is SuperNut, one of my favourite blends. It too contains both crushed hemp seed and peanut granules and in the short time it has been available it has proved to be a hugely successful general purpose feed. SuperNut is another of my own designs and is a nut- and Robin Red-based blend that naturally includes crushed nut and seed components. SuperNut was designed to bind well with lake or tap water and its components are such that the blend breaks down pretty swiftly, which is ideal when you want to draw fish into your swim as quickly as possible. Our field tests have shown it to be amazingly successful, beyond my wildest dreams in fact as you will note if you take a look here.
Fellow testers Adam Roots and Brian Mills have also waxed lyrical about the SuperNut so all-in-all I am pretty chuffed with it.
I use both the above as part of my standard bait strategy and my sessions last year on Le Queroy's Napoleonic Lake and Lake Elba shows just how effective they can be when applied correctly. I actually caught the same fish twice during my session on Elba from the same spot and on the same bait, a mix of crushed hempseed, groats, Frolic dog food and a dash of SuperNut. I also caught 40 other fish on that session, so encouraged by this I took SuperNut along for my record breaking session on Nappy's in September (see link above).