Tommy Biffle has been flipping a Biffle Bug since Day 1 of the iconic bait that bears his name. If fact, he was flipping and pitching a Biffle Bug into cover before the creation of the Biffle HardHead that he most commonly matches with a Bug. And while he still flips the original Biffle Bug and catches big bass that way, for some time now, he has wanted a creature bait built from the Biffle Bug template and designed specifically for flipping and pitching.
Folks at Gene Larew knew to listen to Biffle and worked with him to create the bait he was seeking. The result was the new Flipping Biffle Bug!
True to its name, the Flipping Biffle Bug was built from the Biffle Bug. It has the original Bug’s signature shape, kicking back legs, gliding tail, and ribbed and hollow body.
A key difference is the addition of solid head that gives the bait a creature-like appearance and adds size, along with solidly holding a flipping hook in thick cover. Also, a pair of swimming front legs replace the small bug legs, and the back swimming legs are enlarged. The leg changes create wild swimming action and add major vibration to help fish find the Flipping Biffle Bug and prompt strikes.
The Flipping Biffle Bug is 4.5 inches long, which is 1/4 inch longer than the original Biffle Bug. It is available in 15 outstanding colors, which collectively provide options for any water color and weather condition and to match everything from baitfish to crawfish to salamanders.
When to Use It
For Biffle, the Flipping Biffle Bug offers a perfect fit for any flipping or pitching situation other than punching matted vegetation. (Legs inhibit penetration of mats.) It is a great choice any time the bass are shallow and tight to cover, or, better yet, holding in the cover, whether between the branches of bushes or laydowns or among roots of trees.
Biffle also uses the new Flipping Biffle Bug on a HardHead when he wants that type of presentation and is seeking extra movement or size to help fish find the bait or to trigger bites from fish that are looking for extra action. However, for him it’s primarily a flipping bait, used to work in the heart of specific pieces of cover and to wrestle fish out of the thick stuff.
Where to Fish
The short answer to the where question is, “close to cover. That might mean between cypress knees, under a laydown, in a bush, against a dock support or a host of other things, depending on the lake and what the fish are relating to any given day. The common denominator is that he best place to put a Flipping Biffle Bug tends to be right in the middle over the cover, often in the toughest spot to place the lure and get the bass out!
When a lake or river has extensive trees or bushes and everything looks good for flipping, the “where to fish” question gets answered by patterning. The key, on those days, is to pay careful attention to where every bite comes from and figure out depths bass are using, whether they are back in creeks or on the main lake, what kinds of cover or combinations of cover they are using, whether they are in the shade or the sun… Paying attention to EVERYTHING and refining the approach accordingly provides the specifics of where to flip next.
If an area has both live and dead trees or bushes of the same kinds, Biffle always gives preference to the live ones. He doesn’t know the reason, but he knows through decades of experience that the fish are much more likely to be under a tree that has green leaves than one that doesn’t have the green, even if everything at water level looks the same.
Why a Flipping Biffle Bug
Biffle wanted more of a creature, with added size and motion, but did not want to sacrifice all the features that make the original Biffle Bug so effective. The Flipping Biffle Bug checks both boxes, creating a perfect bait for flipping into cover and pulling out big fish.
The solid head holds a flipping hook well, even as the bait slides through branches, but the hollow body allows the addition of rattles or scent, along with feeling natural to bass, so they hold on longer. The extra legs provide much more action, which is vital for getting the attention of bass that are buried in cover and fish that are in the stained or dirty water that tends to push them shallow and close to cover.
Because of the ribbed body and cupped tail, which match the original Biffle Bug, the Flipping version offers the same general appearance and gliding action that have proven effective over years.
How to Fish
Biffle flips or pitches his bait into the heart of the cover and lets it drop, watching for any unusual movements or for the bait stopping its fall before he expects it to be on the bottom. If he detects anything different, he sets the hook.
If the bait makes it to the bottom without being hit, Biffle leaves it there for a moment and then lifts it a couple of feet and lets it drop again. He might repeat that once or several times, depending on the responses of previous fish. Again, patterning is important, and learning whether fish are hitting immediately or whether they need to be coaxed into biting, is important for efficiency. Either way, most fish hit the bait on the fall.
When possible, Biffle flips his bait over a very small branch in the heart of the cover. That allow him to lift it vertically, instead of pulling it out of the cover, as he lifts and drops the bait, keeping the offering in the primary strike zone longer.