Fishing the TYLURE Kicker Sunfish

Inside tips from the designer

In this article I will be explaining the most effective way to fish the Kicker Sunfish along with a few tricks that I have learned while using this bait. First off, let me give you a brief explanation of the bait. The Kicker Sunfish comes in three models, the waking/floater, the slow sinker, and the Bed Bait. Now there are certain applications where each of these models will be the most productive

Let’s start with the waking/floater. This is a great bait to use once the water temperatures are warm enough for small sunfish to move into the shallows. On most bodies of water this is from the post-spawn until fall. When you start seeing small sunfish pecking and feeding on the surface is when this bait is at its best. It is important to use monofilament when working this bait as it floats and helps keep the bait on the surface. If there is heavy cover I will use 17-20 lb. line and if there is no cover for a fish to break you off in and the water is clear I will go with 15 lb. line. I love to throw this bait over flats with submerged vegetation because sunfish roam these areas feeding on insects and small baitfish. I will often fan cast a flat as I work my way through it varying retrieves to let the fish tell me how they want it. Once I find the retrieve that is most effective I normally try to repeat that retrieve throughout the day.

Another good application for this bait is to work it into cover coming from open water into shallow water. Remember a bass would much rather corner a sunfish against the bank, weed line, point, rock pile, dock, or whatever cover or structure that you are fishing than chase it into open water. Apply this method and you will get much greater results. Another great thing to try is when you find a bass or suspect a bass is hiding in an isolated piece of cover or structure throw the bait past the area and work it towards the piece of cover and just dead-stick the bait. This is often very boring as it takes a lot of patience to do this but the longer that bait sits there the more frustrated and agitated the bass will become and eventually will smash the bait out of anger. Bass are very territorial and they hate sunfish being in their area. I have seen bass smash sunfish just to kill them and they don’t even eat them. The Kicker Sunfish works especially well when doing this because the joints are so loose that the bait will actually undulate and move with the slightest movement of wind or you the angler just twitching it.

Now let’s talk about the slow sinking model. I will throw this bait year round, but again I find it most productive from early spring all the way until late fall. Don’t be fooled though, I have caught a lot of fish in the dead of winter on this bait. Just fish a little slower during these months. I typically throw this bait on fluorocarbon in clear, heavily pressured bodies of water, but will switch over to monofilament in dirty or muddy water. I believe that using fluorocarbon in clear water reservoirs, like my home Lake Castaic, gets me many more bites. I normally use either 17 or 20 lb. line based on whether there is cover or not. I like to try and find vegetation when using this bait because that is where sunfish will congregate and bass follow them there. Weed lines are number one hotspots for this bait. Try to work the bait parallel to the weeds and bass will come out of the cover and crush it. Bluff walls are also great places to find bass in the heat of summer. Try to find the walls that offer some shade and work this bait parallel to the bank and use erratic retrieves with directional changes.

Too many people just chuck the swim bait out and reel it in. Don’t get me wrong, this will work but I want to be different from the rest of the crowd and I throw in jerks and pauses on my retrieves. I believe this helps me to get bit because most of my bites come right after I throw in that erratic movement. Bass seem to react more to this style as well and will make quick decision mistakes and take the bait. Swim baits are becoming very popular and bass are seeing a lot of them these days, and most people are using straight retrieves. Vary it up and you will be surprised. The Kicker Sunfish works great as a straight retrieve or erratic, directional change retrieve doing a complete 180 degree turn when you jerk the rod and allow slack line to turn the bait.

Lastly, is the Kicker Sunfish Bed Bait. My favorite bait to throw and I am not even a very good sight fisherman. That is because 90% of the time I don’t even use it as a bed bait. However, it works great on beds because it sits on it’s nose, won’t roll over and looks like a sunfish is pecking at the bass’s bed. For you bed fisherman this is a deadly bait. Now let me explain how I normally fish this bait. Because this bait swims so well and sinks down head first, I fish it very much like you would a lipless crankbait. I will throw it out let it sink, and it does swim on its own while it sinks so I get a lot of bites on the fall. If I don’t get bit on the fall than I will begin to rip the bait up off the bottom and let it fall back down. As I rip it upwards it swims and as it falls it swims. An absolutely killer technique that the fish have rarely ever seen because there is no other bait like it. Another great way to retrieve this bait is like you would a crankbait along rip rap swimming it and banging it into the rocks drawing reaction strikes. Because the lead weight is on the nose it takes all of the abuse and no paint will wear off. I also fish this bait like a jig and just hop it wherever I would fish a jig. So in short is one of the most versatile swim baits on the market. It is part swim bait, part jig, part crankbait, part lipless crankbait, and of course a great bed bait for spawning bass.

So please take a look at the line of TYLURE Kicker Sunfish. They come in an array of color choices based on the sunfish that live across the country. You can also request custom paint jobs at no extra charge. They are built with all stainless steel components, realistic 3D eyes, tough soft plastic fins, and high quality hooks. As always I stand by my product 100% and try to offer the best customer service available. Try them out, you will not be disappointed.

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