When Shinichi Fukae of Mineola, Texas,
claimed the $100,000 first-place check at the 2006 Wal-Mart FLW Tour
season-opener on Lake Okeechobee, he played a little game of cat and
mouse with the fishing press. He didn't quite lie to the assembled
writers, but a bit of sleight of hand and omission left the angling
public with only part of the story.
UNVEILING SHINICHI FUKAE'S SECRET BED-FISHING SETUP
legend and Chevy pro Larry Nixon interviewed Fukae for television
coverage of the event, and while Fukae showed him the key element of
his presentation, he wouldn't let Nixon or FLW Outdoors use its image
in their broadcast.
Here, for the first time in published
American fishing literature, is the true story of Fukae's secret
weapon, the previously undiscovered "Tubo Rig."
CAT AND MOUSE?
game of obfuscation with the press may be particularly apt, because the
key to the Tubo Rig is its "hide-and-seek" character, which makes it
different than anything ever seen at the end of a professional angler's
"Whether you call it hide and seek; cat and mouse;
here now, gone later; or anything else, it's a presentation based on
engaging the curiosity of a bass. While we often hear that bass strike
out of hunger, territoriality or pure reaction, very rarely is their
curiosity invoked, but it's clearly a critical element (along with
territoriality) whenever an angler engages in bed-fishing.
what is the Tubo Rig, you ask? Simply put, it's a shrimp and a cup. An
angler threads his line through a hole in the cup, ties it to the small
floating shrimp (with or without a hook) and pitches it out in front of
a bedding bass.
The cup rests in the bed, and when the fisherman
feeds it some slack, the small shrimp floats up and away, where it can
be twitched or pulled right in front of the bass' face. If the fish
shows any interest, it can be pulled forward into the cup, where it
rests tantalizingly, safe from the jaws of the now engaged fish, not
unlike a crawfish with its nose peeking out of a hole in a rock.
the fish begins to lose interest, the shrimp can be loosened once again
and allowed to float back up into the face of the now-agitated fish. At
that point, it's just a matter of repeating the process until the fish
is worked into a lather, ready to eat anything that gets into its path.
Some anglers use the hooked shrimp itself, but Fukae feels the fairly
heavy cup hinders the fight, so he instead prefers to reel in the Tubo
Rig and tempt the bass with a soft plastic, usually a Senko or a white
Yamamoto tube bait.
The Tubo Rig comes with a small double hook and a strip of animal fur to add buoyancy and action to the bait.
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SECRET RIG ARTICLE