Do Bass Eat Snails? How to Catch Bass with Snails

Bass are among the most popular freshwater fish to catch in the United States. Even though they’re not picky about their diet, you still need to know more about their feeding patterns in order to use the right bait to catch them.

One of the common baits that anglers use to catch Bass is snails.

So, do Bass eat snails? Bass do eat snails if they exist in their natural environment, which makes them a good choice to use as live bait. Snails are also easy to obtain and store. When rigging a snail on the hook, it’s usually recommended to remove its shell to make them easier for the fish to bite on.

Continue reading to find out more about what Bass eat at different stages of their lives and how to use snails to catch bass.

What Does Bass Eat?

Mature largemouths are the top predators in their environment and consume a wide variety of foods. 

They mainly feed on tiny crustaceans and other plankton in their native environment when they are freshly hatched. As they grow older and bigger, their appetite will change, and they will feed more on insects, invertebrates, and smaller fish than they do now.

The mature Bass eats a wide variety of foods, as discussed previously, and will eat almost everything it can get its hands on. They could chase down and consume animals roughly half their own size because of their enormous mouth and stretchy gut.

Mature Bass will consume a variety of species, including the following:

Smaller Fish

Bass consume various types of small baitfish, including Bluegill, banded killifish, shad, yellow perch, ciscoes, shiners, and sunfish are also good choices. 

They will also eat the young of larger species of fish such as catfish, trout, walleye, white Bass, and striped Bass, as well as smaller black Bass. 

These baitfish can be bought at a local fishing supply store, or you can fish them yourself.  Capturing your own bait fish might be a cost-effective strategy to save money when fishing.


Crawfish are another favorite food of Bass, especially largemouth bass.

Many anglers believe that live crawfish is one of the most effective baits for catching Bass. If you use them as bait, it’s recommended to attach a crawfish to the hook by its tail the tail and use it as fishing bait. 


Some types of Bass like to chase down energetic species that swim around a lot, such as frogs since they’re fierce hunters. 

Frogs are ideal for use as live bait since the Bass won’t be able to ignore the energetic action frogs produce.

Since live frogs are harder to obtain, some anglers also use artificial lures designed to mimic the appearance and movement of live frogs to catch Bass. If you’re searching for a new artificial lure, this could be worth a shot.


Bass will sometimes eat smaller species of snakes. However, it’s highly advised to avoid using them as bait.

Rather, use the far safer and more effective artificial lures that are designed to mimic snakes. They will still produce the same action without subjecting you to the dangers of using a live snake. They will be available at any local fishing shop. 


Bass are obsessed with salamanders of all sorts, small and big. They are attracted to salamanders because of the strong, unique action they create and also their vibrant colors.

It might not be a good idea to use salamanders as bait, but you can use artificial lures designed to mimic their appearance and movement.

Bass can also eat things that you would never think of. For example, you can catch bass with hot dogs!

Do Bass Eat Snails?

Bass consume invertebrates like snails in their native environment, making them an excellent lure option. 

Snails make a good live bait option as they are easy to obtain and store. 

Some anglers like to remove the snail’s shell before rigging them on the hook as bait, but it’s not always necessary.

How to Use Snails to Catch Bass?

Snails are excellent for use as bait when all other options are ineffective.

Even though snails don’t produce a lot of action, their rubbery structure makes them incredibly resilient, and you may occasionally capture more than one Bass on the same hook. 

Some anglers experimented with several techniques when it comes to rigging live snails on the hook. It’s not easy as they’re fragile, and if you hook them too aggressively, they might die.

It’s recommended to hook them through the mouth and to leave a bit of the hook visible for the Bass to bite on. You can also remove the shell and pass the hook through their body, but this method will kill them faster and might not be as effective in getting the Bass to bite.

Another challenge in using snails as bait is storing them properly. You need to make sure you’re storing them in a clean container with fresh water as they cannot tolerate any chemicals or impurities.

If you are going for striped bass, make sure to check out our guide to choosing the right rod for striped bass here.

Related Questions 

Where to Get Snail Bait?

You can get snail bait from any bait or tackle shop in your area. You can also order containers of snail bait from online stores. Some anglers also try to catch the snails, but it can be difficult to locate them. It’s very important to store the snail bait properly to keep it healthy.

What Does Bass Eat?

Bass are opportunistic eaters, meaning they will eat anything that comes their way except plants. They most eat baitfish, including shads, bluegills, shiners, and minnows. They will also eat other species such as snakes, frogs, snails, crabs, crawfish, lizards, and small turtles.

What does Do Florida Bass eat? 

Florida Bass enjoy a specific high-protein diet. They will eat a wide variety of species, including small fish, insects, mosquitoes, black fly larvae, mayfly nymphs, worms, adult insects, mussels, crayfish, snails, tadpoles, frogs, salamanders, mice, and small turtles.

Can You Fish for Bass with Dead Bait?

You can fish for Bass with dead bait if the fish are very hungry and there’s no other option available. However, you need to make sure that the dead bait appears healthy and that it’s rigged to create some action; otherwise, the Bass will not be attracted to it or bite.

Helpful Resources

What Do Bass Eat?

Become A Bass Wizard

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