How to Grow Fish Bait at Home with No Effort
Mealworms are easy to grow at home. These come in two sizes - small and giant. I like the small's, but I have a buddy who grows the giant's. Get a new 5 gallon bucket (no lid). Buy these from your fast-food places for around $1.00. Then go to the bait shop and buy a couple of boxes of the size mealworms that you want to grow. Do not mix them!
I started mine with a big box of Kroger Cost Cutter Oats, but Quaker Oaks will do. I now use hog brand meal. We buy one hundred pounds (several of us split it) for $6.00 from a farm supply place.
Now fill the bucket about 1/4 full of meal. Dump in the worms (the more you start with the better). I got about 1,000 from a friend. Now slice up a potato and throw it in (you can use apples, fresh corn cobs). What we're looking for here is something to hold moisture. I use only potatoes.
Buy some nylon screening from the hardware store to cover the top. You do not have to tie it in place. The bugs do not fly. Now the worms will turn into grubs, then black bugs, then die. It will look like nothing's in there (wait). Feed potatoes and meal when you think it's necessary. I add 1 potato per week now, plus a cup or two of meal. Leave old stuff in bucket. The stuff that looks like powdered residue are eggs -that's your next crop.
This process takes a couple of months, but you will have worms of all sizes, black bug and grubs eventually. I fish with the worms and grubs. I ice fish mostly with the grubs and smaller worms.
How to Catch More and Bigger Fish
I didn't hit anything or pull my bait through rocks, so how did it get that way? Your guess is as good as mine. During the winter's long nights, go through and resharpen everything.
WD40!! Yes, WD40!! I used to put new lines on my reels every week, cleaned them after each trip. I bought bulk spools of 3,000 yards of line, because I was fishing a tourney each week.