When it comes to understanding the preferred diet of giant panfish, Michigander Barry Williams (aka “Ice Man Barry”) ought to have a Ph.D.
Case in point, he’s learned from decades of open-water and ice fishing experience that panfish gobble up a lot more bottom-digging nymphs, water fleas and grass shrimp than the bigger stuff we stick in front of their faces.Hence, Williams’ line of hand-tied panfish baits with names like Spooky Road Kill Hair Flies, Tungsten Larva, the Bushwacker and Spooky Spider (all tied with hair and fur taken from roadkill!
I’ve fished nearly all of Williams’ baits and panfish eat ‘em up. The Tungsten Larva with glowing bead-head is particularly deadly on crappies.
Although Williams could probably increase his prices, all baits are only a buck a piece. Heck, you can’t get a can of Coke for that.