Scratching Traces For Edible And Reef Fish

If you are unfamiliar with the term "scratching" it refers to scaling down your tackle when the bigger fish are off the bite and targeting small edibles and reef fish such as Blacktail and Wave Garrick.

1 hook scratching traceThese are the two traces/rigs I like to use when throwing for smaller edibles and reef fish. This first trace is just basically the general one hook trace I would use. I use small hooks generally and I like using the size 6 Diachii's. With a glow bead and a bit of foam for movement and floatation does the trick most of the time. I normally like to use a shorter piece of line (20lb Fluorocarbon) for this trace, normally 10-15cm. I have noticed the hook gets caught up less and 9 times out of 10 I will only lose the sinker if I get stuck. I use 10lb sinker line, twice the length with a weaker knot attached to the sinker. If I am fishing close I will rather use a sliding sinker on the mainline. Please see the picture on the left. Please click to enlarge.

2 hook scratching trace with bead and floatationThe trace on the left has caught some very nice fish. I think this trace will work very well for all edible fish species. Its a double hook trace separated by a 3 way swivel. 2x Size 2 Diachii's are the hooks of choice here. Basically, I have one hook fishing right on the bottom and one hook fishing as close to mid-water as possible. The bottom hook snoot is twice the length of the top one and has a few small split shots added close to the eye for extra weight. The line used here is 20lb fluorocarbon; I really enjoy using fluorocarbon line as it is invisible in the water. The top trace is something I am experimenting with: What I have done here is add floatation and a large floating orange bead with large holes: this rubs against the eye of the hook or the knot and creates vibrations as well as a small rattling noise. I use this trace as the attractor and will have a bait such as a chokka blob bait on it and on the bottom hook a bait such as sand prawn or pink prawn. My intention here is, either to get the peckers to eat the attractor bait until a nice fish finds the prawn on the bottom hook or for a large fish to take the top bait out of irritation. Please click the image to enlarge.