Fishing rat lures for bass isn’t as popular as I think it should be. Many people don’t even know these lures exist. The best rat bass lures are weedless, and they offer a topwater presentation that works best in heavy cover during the warmest months of the year.
Based on my decades of experience, paired with research and education from anglers who use these lures regularly, I put together this pro guide to help unfamiliar anglers use these great “niche” lures.
Our Picks For The Best Rat Lures For Bass
Spro Bbz-1 Rat 40 Swimbait
Most people say if you’re turning to rodent fishing lures, you might as well hang up your rod and forget about it. I don’t know if I agree! This lure is awesome, and it’s a great topwater that you can use to fish around dense vegetation and heavy cover.
As for the lure itself, it’s durable, has a great lifelike appearance, and the presentation is spot-on. Be sure to play around with your speed because if you go too fast, you’ll pull the rat underwater.
Savage Gear US-SG 3D Rat Lure
If you’re in the market for a lifelike rat bass lure, you’ll want to give this one a look. Most anglers say the bass bite this on a nice slow retrieval, but the cast is where you get attention. It’s got a broad belly, so the lure makes a loud clunking sound when it hits the water.
In addition to fishing for bass, you can use these for pike, walleye, musky, and crappie as well. The only downsides are the fragile tail and the fact that it only comes with one treble hook in the middle as opposed to double hooks.
Lunkerhunt Yappa Rat
If you typically fish smaller ponds for bass, these mouse lures might be a solid choice. The flared lip on the front catches water and spits it back out, creating a loud and desirable noise that the bass can’t resist.
The best thing about this lure is the weedless presentation. You can cast these directly into heavily covered areas without having to worry about dragging all the weeds back with you.
OKDeals 6pcs Mouse Topwater Lures
This multi-pack of six lures are made with high-quality materials and double barbed weedless hooks. It’s a great choice for heavily vegetated waters or fishing along the shore. Mice lures work well along the shoreline, but these have a significant defect.
They’re made as topwaters, but they sink, which is a downside, but you can work with it if you know what you’re doing. Let it dive, and the largemouth bass will work on it as it sinks.
When To Use Rat Lures
While rodent lures are an uncommon fishing tackle, you’ll want to make sure you understand the ideal fishing conditions for using them. Summer is when these lures are sure to make an impact. Rat lures for bass fishing are best when vegetation and cover are high.
To take it even further, you’ll do even better if you fish immediately following a heavy rainstorm. Rains tend to cause runoff, which can lead to rodents and small mammals ending up in the water or very close to it.
Bass expect this, and they prioritize their feeding habits around that. So, next time you’re trying to figure out the ideal lure following a rainstorm, give some of these rodents a try.
Where To Use Rat Lures
You find yourself in a post-rainstorm situation, you’ve got your rat lure in hand, where do you cast it? Most of these are weedless, which means the hooks are turned in towards the lure in some way to prevent vegetation from building up.
Because of this, you’ll want to cast these out towards the shoreline directly into the vegetation where you couldn’t use soft plastics, jigs, or spinners.
When the rain hits and starts washing things into the water, rodents can go with it. They’ll mull around in the vegetation, and you need to recreate that presentation with your lure.
If you’re fishing from the shore, you want to cast parallel to the shore and try to find open space between weed beds where you can get some room to present the lure. Even if you’re casting directly into cover, if you have a little bit of room to work, that should be enough because most bass will strike the lure within seconds of it hitting the water.
Gear To Use With Your Rat Bass Lures
The best rod and reel combo for when fishing weedless topwater lures for bass is a medium power and action rod with a moderate gear ratio spinning reel. The presentation here is pretty slow, so you don’t need anything too far on either side of the fence.
Ideally, we’re looking for a 6:1 gear ratio, and I recommend a rod with preventative abrasion guides so you can get an accurate cast. Your casting accuracy will play a major role in your success because you’ll want to drop these right in between two areas of dense cover.
As for fishing line, you need something strong enough to work through the vegetation, but you also need low visibility with topwater fishing. I would suggest braided backing of around 30 lb test with a fluorocarbon leader.
Rat Lures For Bass: Expert Tips
Here are some of the best tips I could come up with based on my personal experience with these lures and some networking with local bass anglers.
Rodents don’t stop and go, which is the main thing that separates these from topwater frog lures. Frogs move in erratic but patient movements while rats and mice keep a steady pace. You need to keep that in mind and retrieve consistently with longer pauses.
Our first instinct is to jerk that rod as hard as we can with each nibble, but these are weedless lures, so we need a solid strike if we’re gonna set the hook. The bass basically needs to inhale the lure if we plan to get a nice hookset.
Wait for the real strike. Bass like to feel out a situation, so they might nibble on it and play around with your lure for a while. If you’re creating the right presentation, eventually, they’ll take a big strike, and that’s when you want to set the hook.
Fishing rat lures for bass is an “out of the box” way of thinking, but the best anglers are problem solvers. When you’re faced with a heavy cover situation and worried about ruining a whole day of fishing, you can always turn to rat fishing as a secret weapon.
When summer heats up, and the rain starts falling, that’s when you’ll want to bring these bass fishing lures out of the tackle box. I recommend taking a further look into some of the best sellers above and choosing the right rat lure for your fishing style.
Good luck out there!