Game Fishing TeasersTeasers are almost a black art when it comes to game fishing. Some anglers are so convinced in their effectiveness that they would rather take bananas on board than leave their favourite "Teaser" at home.
Teasers are designed to act like bait schools, flashing and splashing on or near the surface. Whilst prop-wash from the boat will attract fish once they get near they often want something to target. A flashy or splashing teaser might be just the thing to get them closer to the lures. Then if they find a lure they like whammo - success.
I have seen many instances of poor fishing activity turn into bumper fishing once someone realised the "teaser" was in the boat rather than in the water. They are a serious piece of tackle in the game fishers arsenal.
It seems the history of teasers is somewhat vague, but below I have found some info on the very famous "Witchdoctor" diving, reflective teaser developed by game fishing legend Peter Pakula. The Pakula name is considered by many at the very top of the tree with all their products whether these are lure, teasers, rods or any other products.
The Witchdoctor Teaser was Peter Pakula's first invention, developed in his early teens before he became obsessed with lure development. These teasers were initially designed for use while trolling live and dead baits. After all these years the Pakula Witchdoctor is now accepted as one of the best fish exciters for all trolling applications. At all trolling speeds the Witchdoctor stays deep below the prop wash, in fact up to 15 feet down, vibrating in what seems a slow wobble sending out irresistible vibrations, flashing reflected shafts of fluorescent blue and purple light in all directions. It is designed to stay deep and not come to the surface to interfere and tangle with trolling lines.
The Pakula Witchdoctor is very easy to use, simply position it around 4-5 metres in front (closer to the transom) of your closest lure or bait, but run it on the other side i.e. if your closest lure is on the starboard side, run the Witchdoctor on the port side, and it will do the rest! It is important to remember that this teaser is very effective and will attract fish directly to it. It is therefore critical to ensure that a bait or lure should always be placed in close proximity to this teaser, at least within 4 metres. Over the past few years there have been few national tournament winning boats that don't troll at least one Pakula Witchdoctor, many use two!
The Witchdoctor can be run on any material, but Pakula suggest easy to handle material such as 5 mm or 1/4 inch nylon or silver rope with a sturdy stainless clip on the end. 60 feet should be ample.
At around $175 it isn't cheap, but neither is a day trolling for little or no results.
Henderson Diving Teasers
These are undoubtedly a copied version of the superb Pakula Witchdoctor. Smaller in size they dive to 2-3 metres and are normally run just 3-4 metres behind the prop wash. The Henderson teasers have an inbuilt rattle, which is probably an added attraction. Covered in mirrors and with flashy fluoro paints the swinging, reflective, vibrating action is a proven fish attractor. There are two or three different models available with different predominant colours.
Priced at around $80 they come with a protective cover for safe storage. Best attached with 3-400lb PVC coated line.
Both the above teasers are diving models, which work well under any conditions.
An interesting type of teasers is a great option for the budget conscious. The Boone model comes in two sizes 9 1/2" and 12" at $40 and $50. These teasers do a lot of jumping and flapping on the surface and like other teasers attract fish because they disturb the surface like a school of bait. Very bright orange and pink colour give good contrast.
Henderson Speedy birds have a very flashy mirror, which is an added attractant. Comes in two sizes 12" and 16" at $40 and $50 in very bright orange, pink and yellow.
These types of teasers are affected by wind and are best used on light wind days - especially on smaller boats where the width of the transom is less than bigger boats. Usually run on one quarter at 8-10 metres behind the boat rigged on 250-300lb mono or cord. If run short, the birds can be rigged with a teasers skirt behind, or a lure.
These are the most basic of all teasers, one of the cheapest and come in a huge variety. They can even be clipped on to another teaser, but mostly they are used alone. There are quite a few brands on the market and many anglers make their own from skirts. The Fish Eagle brand comes pre-rigged with around three metres of heavy mono and are available in a wide range of colours in two sizes 8" and 10" from $40. These are cheaper than if you made your own from new materials and they come on a handy board making storage easy. Like the Birds these teasers can be rigged with a lure behind them.
Anglers sometimes opt to make their own teasers, but if you stick to the name brands you will probably be better off. They are proven in the water and once you are out fishing you don't want to be tuning your teaser to make it work. It is time to fish.
Don't go game fishing without some sort of teaser - it will increase your catch and you fishing pleasure.