What are fishing lures made of?
Updated: Sep 29, 2020
In early time, fishing lures were made from bone or bronze to iron, copper, and in one case an iron hook soldered to a copper spoon. Many lures had varying shapes and sizes fitting different scenarios like ice fishing and summer fishing.
In the middle of the 18th century, English tackle shops are recorded as selling tin minnows that were largely designed to spin as their attracting action, and realistic imitations of bugs and grubs made from painted rubber. Spoons appear to have originated in Scandinavia in the late 1700s.
The number and variety of artificial baits increased dramatically in the mid to late 19th century. The first production lures made in the United States, mostly metal spoons and spinners, came on the market in the last half of the 19th century.
Today's lures are made of wood, plastic, rubber, metal, cork, and materials like feathers, animal hair, string, tinsel and others. They could have any number of moving parts or no moving parts. They can be retrieved fast or slow. Some of the lures can be used alone, or with another lure.
In most cases they are manufactured to resemble prey for the fish, but they are sometimes engineered to appeal to a fishes' sense of territory, curiosity or aggression. Most lures are made to look like dying, injured, or fast moving fish.
Lures are usually used with a fishing rod and reel and can be bought commercially or made by hand.
One advantage of use of lure in general is the reduction in the use of live bait, to avoid overharvesting bait species which tend to occur lower in the food chain. Lures usage also improved survival of fish during catch and release fishing. This is because lures reduce the incidence of deep hooking which has been correlated to fish mortality in many studies.