“Baiting a prawn on a fish hook is easy once you get the knack for it.”
Try and keep the bait frozen for as long as possible, as it stays much fresher and attracts the fish more easily. Keep it in an esky or cooler bag instead of out in the sun. You can wet your bait in the waterway you are fishing from, when you are ready to attach the bait to the hook, if it is not quite defrosted to start with.
When baiting a prawn you need to insert the tip of the hook into the tail end of the prawn and gradually slide the prawn onto the contour of the hook, following the curling shape of the hook. You do, however, need to straighten the prawn along the shaft of the hook, so it appears real and natural to the fish you are chasing.
Bait the hook slowly and carefully and finish off with the tip of the hook protruding somewhere just before the head region. You don’t need to have the whole prawn body baited on the hook, it’s easier not to. It stays better intact and looks more appealing and life-like to the fish.
Prawns are great bait for river and creek fishing, generally in brackish waters (where the fresh water and salt water meet). Black Bream is a prime catch in the rivers and they absolutely love prawns, as do crabs. I actually caught 2 impressive blue swimmer crabs on a fishing line, in Walpole (Western Australia), in the Frankland River.
I got them on the line from the bottom and thought I had a fish each time, until I saw them coming up and chasing the bait. Once I saw the crab close to the surface, I stopped winding the line in as fast (slowed it right down to nearly nothing) and slowly enticed the crab up, which was chasing the bait (he had no interest in looking up at me or the boat).
All we had to do was grab the landing net and scoop him up whilst close to the surface and bring him into the boat. So stoked to catch some crabs off a line!