How to Attract Sheepshead

Fishing for Sheepshead
How to Catch Sheepshead

Attracting Sheepshead
The ever popular Sheepshead can be a difficult fish to catch because of its massive amounts of strong teeth and bony mouth, but there is a way to help ensure you catch more sheepshead.  Using attractants!  There are two main types of attractants used and both can be very successful, some anglers even choose to use both.

Chumming for Sheepshead

There are many ways that work very well when chumming for sheepshead, but by far, the most popular is to scrape barnacles off of pylons and walls.  Barnacles are one of the favorite foods of sheepshead and scraping them off with a shovel or something similar releases a good amount of scent into the water.

Because the process of scrapping the barnacles off is quite noise and causes quite a bit of vibrations, patients is required.  The noises will chase the fish off for a bit, but the smell released by the recently scraped barnacles will call them back in quickly!

Using an Attractant for Sheepshead

Another effect method of attracting Sheepshead is to use an attractant.  There are many on the market but some of the best performing ones are simple fish and crustacean based oils.  You can buy an attractor from a store or make your own.  Here is how to build one and use it:

  • Drill a small hole (1/4″ – 3/8″) in the top of a plastic peanut butter jar (or similar)
  • Remove labels
  • Place a large sinker in the bottom of the jar
  • Add a sponge that takes up about 25% of the internal volume
  • Poor enough attractant into jar to saturate the sponge
    • Menhaden, Krill and Crayfish oils work GREAT
  • Using a stick (or similar) ensure that the sponge soaks up all the oil
  • Tie fishing line around the neck of the jar
  • Lower the jar to the bottom

Using this type of attractor can last up to 3 days with out the need for a refill.  As an added benifit, it will also attract other fish, such as Mangrove Snapper, Bluefish and many other predatory fish.