ANGLER'S MAIL is number one for tips and tricks! Here's another fantastic bait tip by John Bailey.

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Roughly 60 per cent of my carp fishing these days is done off the top and I am very aware that the bait is a vital element in any success.

Most importantly, the carp has to find the bait in the first place and this is a real issue if it is cool and the fish are not on the top.

It is also a consideration even if the carp are up as there is likely to be a lot of flotsam and jetsam on the surface, both hiding the floating bait visually and throwing off all manner of confusing smells. And this is the key!

You see, after watching 1,000s of carp take off the top I am convinced they locate a bait initially in the vast majority of cases by scent, not by sight.

They will pick up the smell of a bait and follow it through the water until they locate the bait visually and can home in. It makes a huge difference, therefore, to use a bait that has a good smell to it.

A lot of my floater work is still done with crust and the Edwardian advice to dowse it with honey still stands today. I often really lard the sweet stuff on and it has supreme pulling power. It also works well with biscuits too.

If you want modern, a lot of fish oil flavourings work on crust and biscuits too but only to a degree and I still do best with the bee juice!

If you do go the fish oil route do not overuse.Too much is worse than none at all.

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