The Benefits of Using Bait Scents and Attractants

The Benefits of Using Bait Scents and Attractants

Should we be concerned about what fish smell? Absolutely, as fish have a very good sense of smell.

The small openings in their noses are called nares. These nares aren’t like our nostrils which are connected to our throats. Instead, they lead to an open chamber with sensory pads and these sensory pads relay information to the brain which signals to the fish as to what’s the appropriate response, either flight or bite. 

Salmon would be a great example of how important smell is to fish as this is how they return to the river they were born in. So yes, scent does matter!

Before we look at scents and attractants, we would like to highlight the fact that it’s important to check the regulations before using scents because if there’s a bait ban in place on a body of water, scents are not permitted.


Bait Scent and Attractant Brands

There’s a wide array of scents available. Popular brands are:

Bait Oils

Scents come in many different forms. There are oils, which are great for putting on natural baits, artificial eggs, plastic worms, wool and lures.

Bait Gels

There are also gels available which are a longer lasting option for putting on lures such as spoons, spinners or hootchies.  The Pro-Cure Gel has a brown colour, so putting it on coloured wool for river fishing isn’t the best way to go. That would be a job best suited for the oil.

Water-Soluble Bait Spray

There are also water-soluble sprays produced by Pro-Cure that are the only scents to use with jigs or other lures with feathers. These scents don’t make feathers or fur stick together and reduce movement like oils or gels would.

Powdered Scents

There are also powder scents available. These are most popular for use with natural baits such as Pautzke Fire Power or Pro-Cure Krill Powder on salmon eggs.

Mask Human Odour

A huge plus to the use of scents is the ability to mask our human odour.  We carry a predatory complex amino acid L-Serine which can be transferred to a lure when we touch it. Using scents to mask our human odour reduces the flight response from fish. 

This may explain what’s going on with a buddy who seems to be doing things right but doesn’t catch many fish. He doesn’t stink at fishing, he just stinks.

So Many Flavours

So, what flavours for what?  There is a seemingly endless choice of scent flavours available and while there can be some wild cards out there, the most obvious choices are the scents that are a preferred food of the species being targeted.


Bait Scents for Saltwater Fishing

Below are a few examples of natural scents you should be using when targeting saltwater salmon species such as Coho and Chinook or other fish such as Halibut (Pro-Cure Butt Juice) and Cod that feed on baitfish.

Bait Scents for Trout Fishing in Lakes

Garlic scent can be one of the wild cards as it works well for trout and for salmon in freshwater.

Bait Scents for Freshwater Salmon

Below are some of our favourite scents for freshwater salmon.

Steelhead Bait Scents

Check out our Float Fishing for BC Winter Steelhead article.

Kokanee Bait Scents

Kokanee are another species where using scent is super important. Here are the most productive Kokanee scents.


Sturgeon Bait Scents

Carp Bait Scents

So, in conclusion, scents make a difference. Give them a try the next time you hit the water. 

For more information please contact us by email, by phone at 604-931-5044 or stop by the shop at #110 1140 Austin Avenue in Coquitlam BC.

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