How to Fish with Bloodworms as Bait

We all remember our childhood days watching cartoons on television. When it came to a fishing scene, most shows would have the characters fishing with a rod that had a worm attached at the end of the line, for use as bait. Yes, it is true that not only in a cartoon, but also in real life that fishermen consider a bloodworm to be an effective bait. As a result, these shows created some curiosity behind the benefits of a bloodworm and how to use a bloodworm as bait. 

Why Fish with Bloodworms as Bait?

Bloodworms have the strength and capacity to survive even in the toughest situations. They manage to survive in deep marine saltwater conditions where they do not get enough oxygen supply. These worms can also survive in the polluted water body in low oxygen supply. 

Bloodworms are able to survive these conditions mainly because of the presence of iron content in the blood of the worm, which is Porphyrin protein. The hemoglobin factor in the bloodworm’s bloodstream makes its survival possible compared to most of the other types of fishing baits. It also gives the bloodworm its bright red color and smell, which might attract predatory fish. These are the few reasons why anglers choose bright red bloodworms as the ultimate fishing bait. To learn more about the biology of a bloodworm, check out National Geographic.

What Results to Expect when Fishing with Bloodworms as Bait?

Many fishermen questions the effectiveness of bloodworms as bait, especially because of how messy they can be when trying to cut into pieces. Simply put, people have found bloodworms to work really well for fishing. Bloodworms work well as bait in both freshwater and saltwater. It might be the smell, bright red color, or the wiggle of the bloodworm, which attracts fish like weakfish, kingfish, bluefish, perch, porgies, or striped bass. Bloodworms are easy to store and save for your next fishing trip.

You can use a bloodworm as bait over any other worm due to its availability near the coast or by mudflats in marine lands. Generally, bloodworms are centipedes and are not super easy to catch. They are quite expensive when you buy them from bait & tackle shops. If you can regularly find in the mudflats, you will be able to save a lot of money from not needing to purchase from the store. If you want to enjoy a tasty kingfish or weakfish as your next fresh catch, bloodworms as bait may be your best choice. 

The name ‘bloodworm’ itself sounds quite dangerous. Given their large and scary-looking mouths, the most common question regarding bloodworms is if they bite a human. Well, the truth is yes, bloodworms are centipedes, and they can bite! Their bite might cause rashes or some allergic reactions to your skin. If you happen to get bitten, it is best to seek a doctor. But, you should have nothing to worry about if you purchase bloodworms from a store; they can come in various forms. 

They are either dead, frozen, or alive. You can choose any one of the three types for fish bait. All three of these methods work. You can even get bloodworms of two main types, the midge fly larvae or the ones from Glycera. If you have a fish tank and want to feed your fish pet bloodworms, it is best to avoid the frozen ones as they cause a lot of damage to the fish’s stomach cells. But if you want to use it as fish bait, then you can use any bloodworm.

Why Live Bloodworms are the Best Choice for Bait?

The best type of bloodworms for fishing bait are the lives ones. Everything loses its value once dead. Live bloodworms consistently attract more fish for anglers due to their fresh color, smell, and, most importantly, movement. So if you are planning to go fishing with bloodworms as bait, try to keep them alive for as long as possible. If you succeed in maintaining the bloodworms alive, it saves you a lot of money, which you would have to spend on their initial purchase. Read the article further to know how to keep the bloodworm alive.

How to Keep Bloodworms Alive?

If you are a beginner to fishing with bloodworms, then this segment should help educate you on how to keep bloodworms alive. If you do not know how to keep the bloodworms alive for fishing, then follow these steps closely:

  • The first thing you should do is catch or buy a new box of live bloodworms Glycera or midge fly larvae for fishing
  • After making the purchase, you have to wash the live bloodworms in saltwater or freshwater properly
  • Next, you will try to locate a collar of muscle right below the head of the bloodworm
  • Try to use a knife or a pair of scissors to cut through the muscle of the bloodworm. Be prepared for a little ‘bloody’ mess
  • Right after cutting in the collar of the bloodworm, you have to hold its tail and leave its head.
  • Here, you can try to push out its gut slowly through the cut in the collar.
  • Now, you would notice two nerves popping out through the cut along with the gut on keen observation.
  • You have to push out the entire gut of the bloodworm through the cut without touching the two sensitive nerve endings.
  • It is best to wrap up the bloodworm in a newspaper dipped in saltwater.
  • Once wrapped, you can put the bloodworm in a refrigerator in such a condition.
  • The bloodworm will stay alive for a week or so (if you change the newspaper now and then), as it secrets out sand when it is still active.
  • Live bloodworms produce the best results when fishing!


After reading the entire article, you are now ready to fish with Bloodworms on your own! They can be kept alive for a long time and are easy to use the next time you decide to go fishing. Bloodworms are a messy bait but fish certainly do love them. I have had my best success with bloodworms while surf fishing for kingfish. While the kingfish that I caught were small, I could easily catch 15+ fish in one hour – that’s how much they loved the bloodworms!

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