• Posted by Nick Honachefsky
  • On June 30, 2017
  • Comments
  •  1

Early summer back baywaters are hot spots for fluke, and light bucktails work wonders to trick them up. General makes and models include Andrus, S&S or MagicTail bucktails in 3/8 to 1/2 ounces, with most productive colors being white, chartreuse, white and yellow.

Standard roundhead style bucktails work best when tides are at slack or within 2 hours each side of the high tides, but if tide start ripping, switch up to an arrowhead or lima bean style to cut through the water drag better.

Tying a bucktail dropper rig is simple. Start with a 50-pound Spro barrel swivel and a 30-inch section of 25 to 30-pound Seaguar or Yo-Zuri TopKnot fluorocarbon. About 16 inches down from the barrel swivel, tie in a simple dropper loop and affix a 2/0 Gamakatsu Octopus hook or bucktail hair teaser, as the free-fluttering action of the teaser elicit aggressive strikes. On the tag end goes the bucktail, tied via loop knot to allow for a free-swinging flutter. Procure and tip bucktails with strip baits such as fresh, early season mackerel or bluefish, hickory shad, or other natural offerings like squid and spearing. For artificial attractants, lance on a Berkeley Gulp! 3-inch Swimming Mullet or Shrimp to the bucktail hook or dropper teaser.

Target flats as shallow as 4 feet but also on the channel edges generally in the 5 to 20 foot depths. Find areas with slow flow, about an hour around the high or low slacks, and avoid the ripping mid tide hours. Successful light bucktailing in shallow backwaters is heavily dependent upon minimal tidal flow. To work effectively, bucktails should be presented with an up and down vertical approach, and minimize your angle as much as possible. Though you can get away with a 30 to 45 degree angle if the current starts ripping, anything past that angle will virtually alter the action of the bucktail, and you will simply be dragging it horizontally, and that isn’t an optimal presentation.

Light tackle set ups to properly work bucktails include a 6-1/2 to 7 foot medium to fast action spinning rod such as a St. Croix TIS70MLF or Shimano Terramar TMSE66M matched with a 3000 to 4000 class Shimano Sustain reel, and spool up with 12 to 20-pound Power Pro braided line.

Suggested Gear

MagicTail Bucktails

Tear Drop

The MagicTail Bucktail Tear Drop Lures feature super strong black nickel Mustad hooks. They are small bucktail lures. Made for inshore and shallow water fishing. The shape of the head is perfect for snap jigging which is the deadliest type of jigging for bass and weakfish


S&S Bucktails


S & S Bucktails Rattletail Lures use a strong duration finished hook, 3-D eyes, and real deer tail! S & S Bucktails Rattletail Lures only use American Made components and are constructed exclusively in the United States. These bucktails will catch anything that swims.



50lb Power Swivel

These amazing swivels are made of high-grade stainless steel with a gunmetal black finish. They offer super smooth rotation and unbelievable strength and durability. SPRO Power Swivels are 1.5 times stronger than standard barrel swivels despite their tiny appearance.



25ln Top Knot Fluorocarbon

Yo-Zuri TK LD 25LB DP 30YD TopKnot Leader stays clear even after extended use, resulting in more bites!



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