Trout Worms

May 1, 2009

Trout season opened throughout much of Southern Ontario recently (last Saturday in April, I believe – unless things have changed since my trout fishing days), so at long last the fishermen are able to get out and keep themselves occupied until Pike, Walleye and Bass season open (the first two, very soon I might add). Well OK – there WAS of course ice fishing season, if you a brave enough!

Red Worms (Eisenia fetida) – also known as Red Wigglers, Trout Worms, Tiger Worms, and Brandling Worms, among other common names – are well-known for their amazing composting ability, but they aren’t very often referred to as one of the great fishing worms – likely due to their relatively small size. Believe it or not, they are actually an excellent worm for fishing – especially for trout and panfish. You don’t need to keep them as cool as nightcrawlers, they live up to their ‘wiggler’ nickname, and they apparently last quite a while on the hook. After working with these little guys for so long myself, I must admit to being a little soft when it comes to using them for fishing (I definitely stick to the artificial lures these days), but I certainly don’t hold it against anyone who does.

I still vividly remember an episode of Bob Izumi’s ‘Real Fishing Show’ (my favourite to watch back when I was a kid in the 80’s). He was fishing for Steelhead (basically giant Rainbow Trout) using Red Wigglers and small hooks. I couldn’t believe the size of the fish he was hauling in – essentially one after the other too! This was well before my vermicomposting days, but I was certainly impressed by what I saw and determined to learn more about these mysterious Red Wiggler worms.

Here in Waterloo Region we have a world class trout fishery on our very doorstep – the Grand River has become a Brown Trout destination for many a seasoned trout fishermen. It is important to mention that there are some pretty tight regulations in place throughout much of the trout zone, so do make sure to check out this years regulation guide before heading out. During my Grand River trout fishing days (it’s been a number of years now), the stretch of river south of the bridge at Wilson Flats was fair game for lures and bait – not sure if this has changed.

The Conestogo River is another great trout fishing river – and one that’s a bit more of a hidden treasure (not nearly as many people are aware of it). The stretch between the reservoir dam and Wallenstein has lots of brown trout, and some pretty good pike fishing as well!

Just so you know, the smallest quantity of Red Worms we sell is 1/4 lb – this is the equivalent of 250-400 (or more) worms. I highly recommend setting up your own mini bait farm at home if you are thinking of using these guys for fishing. Unlike the giant Canadian Nightcrawlers (aka ‘Dew Worms’), Red Worms doing extremely well (and will readily breed in) small indoor bins – and they’ll even eat your fruit/veggie garbage for you!