Bucca’s magnum-sized Bull Shad jointed swimbaits have been a favorite shad imitator the bass pros have relied on to win tournaments throughout the years. Now Bucca has designed a scale-downed version of the popular swimbait to imitate another favorite bass prey—the bluegill.
During my on-the-water testing of the Baby Bull Gill, I was impressed by the lifelike swimming action of the slow-sinking swimbait. The first time I tried the Bull Gill I put it through the ultimate test of fishing it following a major cold front with a bluebird sky and no wind. Targeting the bluegill’s favorite hangouts, I ran the lure alongside boat docks with a jerk-and pause retrieve to imitate the sunfish. When I noticed some surface explosions in the middle of the cove I threw the Bull Gill into the commotion and immediately caught a white bass.
Dock Patterns With Bucca Bull Gill
The surface activity was short-lived though so I returned to the docks and saw bass chasing the Bull Gill but the fish would turn away when the lure got close to the boat. I saw some more surface commotion in the middle of the cove and noticed on my Garmin LiveScope that predator fish were busting through the balls of shad. When I threw to the shad balls and let the Bull Gill sink a bass weighing about 4 pounds nabbed the lure, rocketed to the surface, and shook off the Bull Gill.
In subsequent tests, the Bull Gill produced largemouth and smallmouth bass, white bass and slab-sized crappie using various retrieves. I discovered the lure is a great wake bait for catching aggressive bass. Retrieving the lure at a fast pace makes it wake across the surface and the jointed sides clack into each other creating a unique clicking sound.
Bluegill usually swim in a darting motion, so when I want the lure to imitate a sunfish I reel the Bull Gill a short distance, jerk it once and pause it before reeling it again. I have also caught bass on the lure with a slow, steady retrieve to allow the lure to sink down about 3 to 4 feet.
Fishing With The Right Gear
The gear I have discovered works best for the Bull Gill is a 7-foot medium-power moderate-fast action casting rod combined with an 8.3:1 gear ratio baitcasting reel. I had tried a fast action rod but kept losing fish on the hookset so I switched to the rod with a moderate fast tip which had more give and prevented ripping out the hooks when a bass bit the Bull Gill. The high-speed reel is ideal for waking the bait and also allows me to present the Bull Gill at a moderate pace by winding slower.
The Bull Gill will work well on 10 to 15-pound line, but I prefer 17-pound fluorocarbon to prevent line breakage when waking the bait. Bass viciously strike the Bull Gill when it is waked so it’s best to use a strong, heavy line to prevent a fish from breaking off when it engulfs the lure.
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