Now on to minnows. Minnows can be a challenge to keep in the summer, but it doesn't need to be that way. With a little effort and the proper storage, it's possible to keep minnows effectively even on the hottest days. The key is don't try to keep too many minnows in one container, and keep them aerated. Aerated is really important.
Some anglers, especially when it comes to walleye fishing, don't bother with minnows in the summer months. They feel that leeches and crawlers are better for walleyes, and sometimes they're right. But there are days when you can add to your walleye catch with a redtail chub or shiner. It's worth the effort to have some minnows in the boat, and the effort really isn't that much. When you get your minnows at the baitshop, put them in the aerated bucket right away, and make sure the aerator is on. Turn the aerator on and leave it on. Some anglers turn the aerator on for awhile, then turn it off to conserve batteries. Then they forget to turn it back on and only remember to do so when it's too late. In the summer, you can't beat the six gallon Frabill Aqua Life container. It keeps good numbers of minnows alive better than anything I've used.
In the summer months, if you keep your live bait lively, you're going to catch more fish. In fact, that idea holds true any time of the year.
-- By Bob Jensen, courtesy The Fishing wire, www.thefishingwire.com. Jensen hosts the "Fishing the Midwest" television show, found online at www.fishingthemidwest.com or www.MyOutdoorTV.com.