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Okay, while we have Johnny Wilkins doing the baits shootout, how about collecting live wiggler's underwater info effectiveness over dead ones. I noticed that people using live wigglers that can survival impalement normally out catch fishes over those who killed their wigglers during baiting. Common ratio is 5-to-1. If Johnny's result come back that livebaits outgun preserved livebaits, we have some data to enhance his finding.

 

My mistake was not able to collect data on live specimen after soaking them in the water during the fishing expedition, since they either get bitten within 15 minutes, or torn asunder before I can even pull the specimen out of the water. On top of that, it never occurred to me how long these wigglers will last in the water since I normally impaled them, causing massive shock, and they pretty much died within 2 minutes before hitting the water, or dead within 30 seconds after I tossed them into the water..of course, the nightcrawlers and red worms are a whole different story. I used superglue in the past, but the glue was so toxic that it killed them within 2 minutes.

 

So, my question is, do any know how long each specimen last in the water before they drown?

 

  1. Meal worms
  2. Wax/beemoth worms
  3. Maggots (possible 24+ hrs)
  4. Red worms (garden or compost)
  5. Nightcrawlers (your choice of Euro/African/Canadian)

 

Data I have so far having fun with my glue resin with #4 octopus circle hook, placing them in a 3 gallons jug, with filtered water that had been dechlorinated (sitting around for 3 days in the sun). Water temp was 68°F, elevation at 860ft, with water pressure in the container roughly about 1psi:

  • Crickets (any garden and woodland variety at any size): average at 43 seconds under water to precise.
  • Ants (any variety, ranging from small carpenter to fire ants..not fun when stung): average at 6 minutes.
  • Green beetle grubs: 35 minutes.
  • Termites: 2 minutes
  • Pill bugs: 45 minutes
  • 1 green caterpillar (not sure from what species of butterfly): 17 minutes
  • Red wigglers (compost variety): 36 minutes
  • Red wigglers (earth/garden variety: 45 minutes
  • Canadian nightcrawlers: 59 minutes

I noticed that people tossed the worms into the aquarium for fish and turtles with 2 inches to 2 feet of water. They're consumed before there was a chance to notice the amount of time before they curled up and spitted out the last bubble. Maggots I notice can swim around the fly trap under a nice 6 inches of water for days. So, I'm presuming they can last for 24+ hours under water. No problem for fishing with them using bait glue there, and wiggle to their hearts content.

 

Hey Tony, I know you use beemoth. Mind tossing a few in a clear up of water, and set a timer for them? Try to notice when they first wiggle under water, to the point they stop wiggling. If anyone can help to test out at their ends, based on monitored temperatures, and geographical location (elevation is a key factor plus the water depth pressurizing the small bodies of the wigglers).

 

* PLEASE, DON'T USE TAP WATER. Chlorine in the water will kill them quite fast. If you can, use your pond water if you have a pond. If not, use filtered water, which at least 85% of the chlorine had been removed.

 

I'll pick some up later to test as well over the weekends, and for breeding purposes.

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OK - I have a few specifics I can now add to the discussion. Working off of Leo's original "green caterpillar" data, I tested a set of beet armyworm larvae (Spodoptera) in deionized water at room temp. I utilized a set of 5 larvae, each approx 70 mg. and approaching 3/4-inch long. Larvae were submerged and then timed. I started pulling the first larvae out of the water at the 8 minute mark, then in 2 minute increments after that. As such, I got data points for the 8, 10, 12, 14 and 16 minute time periods.

First observation was that all larvae struggled like crazy when initially dropped into the water, but all such activity ceased within 30-40 seconds. After that, larvae appeared to go into a state of suspended animation, with only the occasional involuntary flex. I repeated this first step a second time on a different day, and again, excessive movement for only the first 40 seconds, then near paralysis. Wouldn't look too good on a hook, IMO - LOL. Hope you get bit in the first 30 seconds...

Back to the data. After pulling each larvae out and setting them onto a paper towel in a designated and labeled spot, I observed for recovery or mortality. Interestingly, none of the larvae actually perished in this experiment, even after 16 minutes of submersion. Also interesting, recovery time was very consistent at about 2.1 - 2.2X submerged time. In other words, the larvae submerged for 8 minutes required about 18 minutes to fully recover and crawl off, while the larvae submerged for 16 minutes recovered and crawled off at about the 39 minute mark. No movement whatsoever until about 2-3 minutes before respective recovery timepoint.

Next test involved a similar setup, but with cabbage looper (Trichoplusia). Based on the above beet armyworm results, time intervals were 12.5, 15, 17.5 and 20 minutes of submersion. Again, removal and recovery/observation on paper towel afterward,  and again, no mortality as all caterpillars recovered in about 2X the submersed time.

Another thing of note: cabbage looper have a high fat content, and so some of them originally floated on the waters surface until held down for a few seconds. When on the surface, activity was great as their must be some mechanism that keeps them struggling thinking they might escape their situation. All that sank immediately exhibited the near paralysis phenomena at about the 30-40 second time interval, something which I have now coined the "universal catepillar activity constant (UCAC)".   :-)

Lastly, caterpillars breathe through "spiracles" or tiny openings on the sides of their bodies. After a period of submersion, air bubbles frequently formed at the openings, and when doing so, actually made the caterpillar semi-buoyant, frequently rising partially off the bottom of the glass flask.  

Oh freaking awesome findings! Just stupendous!

OK - a quick follow-up. It bugged me that I didn't hit an endpoint (mortality) in my series of tests above, so it was back to the lab bench today. Same beet armyworm larvae, same water/setup - even the same 'universal caterpillar activity constant' - 30 seconds or so and that's all the activity you'll get out of these guys.

This time I extended submerged time starting at 15 minutes and going in 5 minute increments. Used 5 more larvae (the 6th wouldn't submerge), and so started with 15, 20, 25, 30 and 35 minute submerged larvae. Thought this might finally get me an endpoint - not so!

Like yesterday, 15 minute larvae recovered at the 29 min mark. 20 minute larvae recovered at the 35 m mark. 25 min larvae recovered in a little over 40 minutes. 30 minute larvae was up and moving at the 51 m mark, and the 35 minute larvae recovered at the 55 min. point. Apparently you can't kill a caterpillar :) So disappointed...

I know how you feel Waldman (what is your B stands for?). I can't simply walk away from something until the definite info can present itself. My experiment for the maggot is still going. They're still swimming! Although, I can see they're shrinking in size. Not as round and fat that they once were. If they don't drown in the next 2 days, I'll let them out and have them transform into flies after a nice feed on the compost.

 

Wow. They actually slow down their respiratory rate in case of emergency situation that well? Extremely efficient system they got there. We definitely know that these buggers will be the best bait to use all year round in your neck of the waters, when they're not touched by the fish. Simply allows them to revive after dunking them into the water, and you'll have resuscitated live baits all day long.

B = Brian :)

Don't think I'll carry this test out further due to practicality, that is, I'd never fish more than 35 minutes using the same caterpillar :) Time for a fresh one long before that - haha.

Do have another test in mind though once weather breaks. Had a colleague who swore to me that bluegill definitely had a preference for certain species of larvae. Would flat devour one and completely avoid another. I have several at my disposal and would like to have this "myth" proven or busted...

Also would like to know if caterpillars could survive the G-forces of a fly rod cast? Since it seems like they will provide constant movement on waters surface if not submerged (survival mode not triggered), would be cool to use the resin glue and attach them to a small dry fly or similar and use as a natural surface presentation - no retrieve necessary, just natural struggle.

If you like, I can send you the resin sample. I don't have any more smaller 1/8oz jam jars that I saved up over the years, but I'll look for a way to package the resin materials in smaller plastic containers at the 99 cents stores. Looks like I have to purchase a bucket load of resin later as members want to try out the resin.

Donation for raw materials from interested members will always be appreciated  :-) I'll be glad to make the resin for anyone who requests it, as little, or as much as he/she needs. Just need the raw resin, the containers (glass bottle that can be heated with is best), and of course, shipping cost. I know I made a BBG account for this site's cool usage, but man, I think I'll be way over budget *LOL*

I think I see a side business forming here :-) If you're looking for a name for the stuff, might I suggest Leo's Lunker Loogie?

If that's too disgusting (or insufficiently disgusting lol) I can think of more :-)

Oh man, that title got me balling and tear-filled eyes on the floor. I'll just stick with the BBG's Pot Sticker? BBG's Baits Bubblegum? I'll leave the site's members to decide on the catchy name.

 

No side business here..more like a experimentation hobby in full motion. Just more chance for me to do additional experiments for different temperatures, conditions, and resin's purity.

I'm calling it LLL no matter what :-)

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