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Best Bait for Striped Bass Fishing

Striped bass caught with bait

Talk to any angler who knows a thing or two about striped bass, and they’ll probably have something to say about what they think is the best bait for striped bass fishing. Many people will debate the topic, but there are a few types of bait that are universally accepted. 

If you’re new to the striped bass game and looking to get an edge over your angling competition, we also have a thing or two to say. Here, we’ll go overwhich baits to use for striper fishing, including a couple of lures while we’re at it. 


Best Live Bait for Striped Bass Fishing

Not everyone agrees on the best live bait for striped bass fishing, but here are some of the most commonly used. 

Bunker and Herring

We’ve grouped bunker and herring because of how similar they are. Simply put, striped bass love eating these tiny fish year-round. You can find these fresh or frozen in most bait shops, but finding live ones may be unreasonably expensive. However, you can catch them yourself to use as bait if you’re keen for some extra work. 

Bloodworms and Sandworms

Striped bass go absolutely nuts for worms of all kinds, but bloodworms and sandworms especially. They might be the most suitable bait you can use if the cost isn’t an issue for you. They tend to be very expensive in bait shops. You can trawl for them yourself, but this is time-consuming and often requires costly equipment. 


Clams are a classic striper bait especially when fishing from the beach or chunking off shore in a boat.  Buy the clams at your local bait shop or shuck them yourself using large surf clams


Eels are like striper candy.  They love eating these slimy critters, but you will have one hell of a time getting them on to your hook.  They also twist and move a lot in the water which sometimes tangles your line.  Sand eels are the best, but hard to come by.  Common American eels are more typical and available in your local bait shops.

With any of the baits mentioned above, you can get them fresh, frozen or even artificial life like baits and lures to match what ever the local stripers are eating.



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