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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
:-D Hi Guys and Gals,20poundr and I usually troll or cast the shore with a jig and minnow.Thing is when the fishing is slow we would like to give the chicken livers a shot.Could some of you please share your techniques with us and please be specific,we would really appreciate any and all assistance.Thanks.(Heideke and LaSalle)
 

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Well, for livers, or any type of tightline live bait rigs, I like to bait to be suspended off the bottom. For this rig, I tie my bell sinker directly on to the main line. Then I use pre-snelled hooks and attach them to my main line about 18 inches or so above my sinker. They also sell these little plastic clips that I have picked up from Dick's and a few other places to help attach the snelled hooks to your main line.

Another trick I like to use while using livers, since I have problems keeping the liver on the hook, is to cut up small squares of sponge, and soak them in mashed up livers. They soak up all the juice and smell, and needless to say, a sponge stays on the hook a little better than livers!

(if you go with the sponge method tho, I prefer to use an egg sinker and a swivel, with the sponge tied to a leader line past the swivel. Like a Carolina rig for bass)

Good Luck :)2
 

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I use the swivel method with a slip sinker also. I use just enough weight to hold it down OR enough to cast as far as I want to.

As for the livers, I use a treble hook and find the part of the liver that has a skin or membrane and wrap that around to hook shank and then push it down over the hook, then I put any part that I can onto a point of the hook.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
:-D So as I understand this you are saying that this is a vertical presentation,the weight touching the bottom and the bait(liver) on a leader attached above approximately 18 inches.Now depending on water temperature,would you suggest we hit the deep holes or north side near the orange buoys(Heidecke)?Also possibly wind-drift or should we anchor?What about a cast and slow retrieve presentation?Thanks.
 

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Okay, I haven't ever used chicken livers in a vertical presentation from a boat. I have only used them shore fishing. But I suppose that what you are saying would work.
 

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The red thread trick !

I learned a great trick for keeping liver on. After you hook the liver, tie it on with a piece of red tread ! Works great ! I also sprinkle a bit of garlic powder on them. Not kidding.
 

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I used to us a treble hook and weight about 18 inches from the hook, but now I use a single circle with no weight. I usually fish for cats at Shabbona at night from the camp ground and this setup works well. If it is extra windy, i'll throw a weight on, but the chicken liver is pretty heavy already and I can wing it out there pretty well. When fishing from shore I use a medium or medium heavy spinning pole, sturdy rod holder that a 10-20 pound cat won't rip out of the ground, and a bell. I have been thinking about moving my cat fishing rig to a baitcaster with a bait-click and leaving the bell behind, but haven't made the move yet. If fishing at night, look for the more shallow water where the cats move into after dark. Shabbona is a great place to catch cats, just make sure your drag is set so they don't take off with your pole.
Mike
 

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This is a good thread :)2 . I've often wondered about how to rig chicken livers correctly for the cooling lakes. I hope a few more gents chime in with their expertise.
 

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Cheese cloth.
Small squares of it.
Put a # 2 long shank thin wire aberdeen hook with about a 2 foot leader of line into the square.
Fill the square w liver and tie it up with cotton thread.
NOW
Wrap some line around the sack and tie that up with cotton thread so that now the line, thread and cloth is holding the bait together.
Make up a bunch of these baits in advance.

In still water they will hold togher for some time.
They do begin to sag after awhile.

CIRCLE HOOK METHOD
food process your livers and whatever.
Add enough cornmeal to hold it together as a semi dry ball,, not quite boilie dry but close.
Make up your cheese cloth sack but this time don't put a hook onto it.

Using a circle hook, threat the bag onto the circle hook and tie the hook on. DO NOT BURY the hook into the bait. Let the hook dangle. Fish this on the bottom. When you get a bite let the fish take it. DO NOT set the hook. After the cat has moved a bit of feet just stop feeding it line and it will catch itself.

A buddy and I go out in the middle of the day in the dead of summer and fish roving schools of channel cats. You actually see them and sight fish like tarpon. We have one spot where the shore has a big gazebo, wooden dock and 2 boat slips out. The cats seem to cruise that area all day. BUT,, you need the muscle to move them away from the wood and stones and stuff. Even with Bass gear we only get less then 50% of the hits.
 

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I USE A LIVER HOOK[WHAT I CALL EM ] ITS A HOOK WITH TREBIL DESIGN ONLY 2 HOOKS THO AND IN THE MIDDLE IS A NEEDLE, SLIDE CHUNKS OF LIVER ON AND PIN IT SHUT THEN I GIVE EXTRA LINE TO THE HOOK SO THAT I CAN WRAP THE LINE AROUND A FEW TIMES SO IF YOUR GONNA BE CASTING HARD OR FAR YOU DONT HAVE TO WOORY ABOUT LOSING THAT NASTY LIVER . HOPE THIS ONE HELPS YOU .
 

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I've never done it but heard about cutting the liver cross ways and find a vien that runs through it. Run it on to the hook using the vein as the keeper.
 

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The wife will not like it, but cut up her pantihose into small squares put the liver in the squares and tie the top of them. Put your hook through the whold thing and cast away. Will never loose the liver this way.
 

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I never used chicken livers but has anybody tried soaking them in salt for a few hours before using? I know this works when fishing with salmon eggs. It stiffens them up and they become pretty "rubbery"...
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
:-D I really appreciate all the responses,I have found the specialty "liverhooks" before,the pantyhose technique sounds intriguing.Since 20poundr and I make it a point to never crowd or interfere with the shore fishermen,(God bless them)let me pose this question to them.If you were not confined to the shore at Heidecke and LaSalle,where would you want to target on these lakes?(although you seem to be doing pretty well without a boat.
 

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FishArt said:
I never used chicken livers but has anybody tried soaking them in salt for a few hours before using? I know this works when fishing with salmon eggs. It stiffens them up and they become pretty "rubbery"...
FishArt......shuuuuu ;)

About four weeks ago I actually tried to cure the liver with borax, salt and garlic powder. I only tried a few pieces to test it. I cured it for three days and the liver will dry up a little but not a lot and it did not become "rubbery". The liver did stay on the hook better when I cast it out and the fish will take it as good as the uncured liver. I did land a big striper (about 4- 5 lbs) on the cured liver and the cats love it too. The cured liver did not stay on the hook better then the uncured liver when a fish took a bite. It was about the same or just a little bit better. Last night I cured about a pound of liver and will go to lasalle on Sunday to test it again. I will let you guys know what happen.
 

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Another thought. Why not try soaking them in (non-poisonous) alcohol such as a cheap grain alcohol? I know rubbing alcohol or denatured alcohol will stiffen up those chicken livers, but they're also poisonous sop you wouldn't want to try them on fish. But a bottle of the cheapest, most potent stuff you could find might do the trick. You could re-use it over and over again too. As an added bonus - IF a fish keeps stealing your chicken liver, by the third one the darn thing would be too drunk and should be easy to hook - lol!

Granted, some of these ideas might be altering the scent of the liver and might turn the fish off, but I think alcohol would be worth a try. They'd stay stiff for a good 20 or 30 minutes before losing that rigidity...
 

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I tried to use vodka too, but the fish doesn't like to get drunk :lol: They don't even want to tast it. They might take it after sunset, who knows :lol:

I also tried pork liver, beef liver and they don't like them either.
The pork and beef liver stays on the hook really good. over two hours and still very "rubbery". But again only a few cats take a bit and they did not swallow the liver.

I also tried all the other methods people mentioned in here. cheese cloth, pantihose and tie it up with cotton thread. they worked but it is too much trouble to tie you bait. when fishing in the cooling lakes, your bait will almost got hit within a few seconds. these small cat looked like they can find a way to suck out you liver. It is just too much work to do on a piece of liver.
 

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Yeah I agree Chong (except for Heidecke that is) Lasalle and Braidwood have far too many "fiddlers" that'll be just as happy chomping down on a crawler so why waste the time and effort with chicken livers??? Personally, if I'm going to fish for big cats i think a cut-bait (if legal) is a much better choice in most applications. JMO...
 

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snakebit said:
...we would like to give the chicken livers a shot.Could some of you please share your techniques with us and please be specific,we would really appreciate any and all assistance.Thanks.(Heideke and LaSalle)
Snakebit, there is a fast easy way to keep the chicken liver on the hook. Check the Subscriber Reports forum
 

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One more thing to consider. Cut up the liver into nice-sized strips (try to leave some connective tissue on each one), and do this BEFORE going out on the water. Rigging liver can be pretty messy and it's easier to do at home where the light is good and the cleanup is a snap. FREEZE the strips the night before you go out. Seems like a lot of trouble for bait, but it will improve the quality of your fishing experience, trust me.
 
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