Fill Your Traps with These Best Crawfish Baits

Video best crawfish bait for traps

Crawfish are a delicious seafood delicacy enjoyed by many people across the country. Although they are more popular in southern states, their popularity is spreading rather quickly. They make a great fishing bait as well so being able to catch or trap them is great. Catching crawfish can be tricky, however. Knowing the right bait to use is essential for successful crawfish trapping.

We will look at various types of bait and explain why they work so well for catching crawfish. By the end of this article, you should have a better understanding of which bait works best for your next crawfish-catching adventure. Here are some popular baits to use to trap crawfish.


Different types of fish is a great bait for catching crawfish. Crawfish are scavengers and will be attracted to the smell of fish. You can use small pieces of fish or even whole fish as bait. A fish that has a lot of oil or scent seems to attract more crawfish it seems. And even if the fish is rancid, it can still be used as bait in the trap. Much like crabs, they are attracted to dead fish laying on the floor of the water. They type of fish you use is up to you and can vary depending on where you are. A few popular ones are salmon, shiners, gizzard shad, and more. Any oily fish works pretty well in crawfish traps. You can even use parts of the fish such as salmon heads or


Worms are another popular bait used to catch crawfish. They are easy to find and can be used in many different ways. You can use them as live bait, or you can use them as dead bait. Crawfish are attracted to the smell of worms and will be drawn to them. While worms may work in a pinch, and many times are readily available, they don’t make a great crawfish bait simply because a crawfish can sometimes pull them out of the trap from the side, or they simply fallout the sides. They will work in some traps who have a smaller mesh.

Other Meat

When it comes to trapping crawfish, it seems they aren’t too picky about what they eat. We’ve used everything from chicken legs to hot dog wieners, and they all seem to work about the same. Many people will use meat that is cheaper such as chicken necks which can make an excellent bait because it not only attracts the crawfish but also they last longer.

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Dog Food and Cat Food

Dog food and cat food are also great baits for catching crawfish. They are usually easy to find, affordable, and have a strong smell that crawfish can’t resist. Dog food is especially effective because it is often made with fish meal or other fish-based ingredients, which makes it even more attractive to crawfish. Cat food can also be used as bait, but it may not be as effective as dog food especially if it’s a fish-based cat food. Dry or wet pet food is good and can be an effective bait for crawfish.

Processed Foods

One of the best things you can use if you’re setting traps that will soak for a longer period is to use processed foods which come in metal cans. Food such as sardines, tuna, Vienna sausage, and more are great crawfish baits. Make sure you get food that only has the products, however. For instance, if you’re using sardines, don’t get the can with hot sauce included.

The best way to place the bait in the trap is to open the can slightly where the scent of the bait can get in the water, but the meat is difficult to float out or be pulled out. This can help ensure that the bait will remain in the trap for an extended period. If you dump a can of tuna in the trap chances, are it will be completely gone in 6 hours or less. This is especially true if the water has any current.

Manufactured Bait

There are several manufactured baits that can be used to catch crawfish. These baits are usually made of fish meal, and they come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They are easy to use and can be placed in the trap with ease. The scent of these baits is strong enough to attract crawfish from far away, making them an ideal choice for trapping crawfish. Here is one that can be used which is available on Amazon:

No matter which crawfish bait you decide to use , make sure you use it in the right way. Place the bait in the trap and make sure it is secure. You’ll also want to make sure to check the traps regularly to ensure that the bait is in the trap and nothing has gotten it.

Ways to Catch Crawfish

Crawfish can be caught in a variety of ways, from using traps to fishing with bait. Here are some of the most popular methods for catching crawfish:

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Traps: Traps are one of the most common and effective ways to catch crawfish. Traps come in many different sizes and shapes, but they all work on the same principle: bait is placed inside the trap and when a crawfish enters, the door closes behind it. Here are a few crawfish traps that are available on Amazon:

Fishing: Fishing for crawfish is also a popular method of catching them. You can use a variety of baits such as worms, chicken livers, or even manufactured bait. The key to successful fishing for crawfish is to use the right bait and to fish in the right areas. You’ll need to set up a hand line and pull the crawfish in once they start eating the bait.

Nets: Nets are another way to catch craw fish. Nets can be used in shallow water or even in deeper water if you have the right equipment. Nets are great for catching large numbers of crawfish at once. A cast net is used in most cases but keep in mind that crawfish need cover on the bottom and there is likely leaves and other debris on the bottom of the water. Here are a few cast nets available on Amazon:

Hand Grabbing: Hand grabbing is another way to catch crawfish. This method requires you to wade into the water and grab the crawfish with your hands. This method is not recommended for beginners, as it can be dangerous if done incorrectly.

Raking: By taking a garden rake you can scrape the bottom of a shallow area of water to rake up the crawfish on the side of the hill and then grab them. This method works best in small ditches where crawfish don’t have deeper water to retreat to.

No matter which method you choose to use, make sure you are aware of the local regulations and laws regarding crawfish harvesting. Some areas may have restrictions on the size or number of crawfish that can be taken. It is also important to practice catch and release when possible, as this helps ensure that there will be plenty of crawfish for future generations to enjoy.

Why You May Not Be Catching Any Crawfish

If you’re not catching any crawfish, there could be a few reasons why. First, make sure you are using the right bait and fishing in the right areas. Crawfish are attracted to certain types of bait and they tend to congregate in certain areas. If you’re not using the right bait or fishing in the right spots, then it’s unlikely that you’ll have much success.

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There are other environmental factors that can play a part as well. Water temperature, clarity, and oxygen levels can all affect the behavior of crawfish. If the water is too cold or too murky, then they may not be as active and therefore less likely to take your bait. Crawfish tend to be more active in warmer waters where the temps are above 50 or so degrees Fahrenheit. Having an enticing bait can help to get crawfish moving, however.

Finally, it’s important to remember that patience is key when fishing for crawfish. They can be tricky to catch, and it may take some time before you start seeing results. No matter what type of bait you have in your bait container sometimes it’s just not the right time to catch anything. It sucks, but that’s how it is sometimes.

Once you have the right bait and are fishing in the right areas, it’s important to be patient and wait for the crawfish to take your bait. Crawfish can be very skittish and may not take your bait right away. If you’re using a trap, make sure to check it regularly so that you don’t miss any catches. If you’re fishing with a hand line, be sure to keep an eye on the line and be ready to pull in the crawfish when they start eating the bait.

Catch More Crawfish with More Bait?

Using more bait can be a great way to catch more crawfish. Crawfish are attracted to certain types of bait, so it’s important to use the right type of bait for the area you’re fishing in. If you’re using worms or chicken livers, try adding a few extra pieces to your line or trap. This will give the crawfish more options and increase your chances of catching them.

It’s also important to remember that crawfish are most active at night, so it’s best to fish for them during the evening or early morning hours. This is when they are most likely to be out and about looking for food.

Overall, using the right bait and fishing in the right areas can make a big difference when it comes to catching crawfish. Be sure to check the local regulations and laws before you start fishing, and always practice catch and release when possible. With the right bait and a little patience, you should be able to catch plenty of crawfish in no time!


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Ethan Smith is a seasoned marine veteran, professional blogger, witty and edgy writer, and an avid hunter. He spent a great deal of his childhood years around the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in Arizona. Watching active hunters practise their craft initiated him into the world of hunting and rubrics of outdoor life. He also honed his writing skills by sharing his outdoor experiences with fellow schoolmates through their high school’s magazine. Further along the way, the US Marine Corps got wind of his excellent combination of skills and sought to put them into good use by employing him as a combat correspondent. He now shares his income from this prestigious job with his wife and one kid. Read more >>