What is the best colour for flasher rigs.

 Knowing what your target species see is important for choosing the best colour for your flasher rigs, snapper rigs and lures.
We take the guesswork out for your next fishing trip in this deep dive into what colors do fish see and what is the best colour for fishing.

So what really is the best color for flasher rigs?

This is one of the discussions that come up very often when choosing your colour variants for flasher material and lures.

When you look at the multitude of information around sometimes this can seem contradictory and confusing. Some of it is because of bro-science (or wives tales) and some of it is because fish at times can be very fickle.

This video below shows different colours with longer and shorter light waves and how they change in the water the deeper you dive.
 from Kendall Robergs channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2O-1u_SliVgt7gagnspG8A

 

Lighter colors lose their visibility first and then darker colours including ultraviolet colours like fluorescents slowly lose their vibrancy while shorter spectrum colours like blue, black and purple becoming the most distinguishable the deeper you go.

This is caused by the scatter effect meaning that water absorbing the light affects the sharpness of colours and dulls them so they can no longer be seen or distinguished from other colours or the become less vibrant the deeper they go.


As seen in this diagram below light penetration between coastal waters and open ocean can also have an effect on the colour spectrum.

NOAA Deep Light diagram
 

Do fish see as we do?


If you take into account that the human eye and fish eyes are similar but also very unlike on how we see colours and shapes in our natural environments. It is realized by many, what we see and what they see is different.

Colours will lose their intensity and become invisible to the naked human eye the deeper they go, fish, on the other hand, have an added evolutionary advantage in deeper waters than we humans do.

Eyeshine or scoptic vision gives fish and other predatory species of animals a distinct advantage over their prey in low light conditions. The reflector that is just behind their retinas, reflect visible light and increases the brightness of what they can see in low light conditions. This though effects their perception of objects and makes them blurry.
Photo courtesy of Dave Condon Fishing
 Dave Condon Photography
Scientific research proves that fish do not see colours the way we do and that different species perceive different colours or are repelled or attracted to different spectrums.

Many species of fish are Trichromats means they can see in all three primary colours but this only accounts for half of the fish species.

Predators, on the other hand, are colour blind and have a keener sense of distance then than other non-predatory species.
shark

Then there are deep-sea fish and blind cave-dwelling fish but in general, the species we are targeting can see a hell of a lot better in low light conditions then we can.

Fsh can see better in these environments then us humans can, we still have to be aware of the depth we are targeting for the species we are hunting.


It is not just enough to have a singular colour for your flasher.

Even though some species of fish can still see these light colours in deeper depths than us fishos we still want to maximize our efficiency in luring them to our bait and onto our boat as much as possible.


This is why when you are making your own flasher hooks or lures or buying them you will want to pick colours and two tones contrasting colouring that will give you an added edge over their evolution.

By using this very advantage fish have in seeing better than we can in low light environments that also blurs their vision, you can see why flasher rigs like our flasher hooks, that use distinct contrasting colours as well as beads that mimic eyeshine work so well in increasing your hookups. 

 (Colorblind comparison to show the importance of two-tone coloring)

Flasher Rig full ColorFlasher Rig Color Blind

Everyone is familiar of how well pink lures and flashers work well on many species. Even at depths that we humans would never be able to distinguish.

Some fishos claim that lighter colours attract just as well in the deep, suggesting that is the flasher itself that increases the hookups or the contrasting colours used.

Trout caught on Flasher Rigs
This is why paired colours are so important when selecting the flasher hooks that you buy or make yourself. Your flasher hooks and lures will not be as effective or enticing to the target species you are angling for without paired colours.

 

Then what colour should you choose when you are out fishing?


Well, there are a few variances you have to consider:

 

 How deep is the structure you are targeting?

How sunny is the day?

How far are you to coastal waters?

Water turbidity (how cloudy or hazy the water is)

       

      Some colour basics when choosing your flasher or lure.


      Sunny days- Colours like bronze or gold or metallic colours like chrome work best on sunny days.
       
      Close to the surface- Reds and pinks work best on shallow reefs
       
      Dark Background- Hyper colours like Chartreuse and white.
       
      Depth- Black, Blue, and Dark green work well and are very vibrant in deeper water.
       
      Rough Days- on rough and choppy days’ lighter coloring are not going to be as effective so select darker colors on rough days as this will increase the effectiveness of your flasher hooks.
      Matching the hatch a term that is thrown around a lot and that is because it is a tried and true effective approach to selecting your flasher hooks and lures.
       

      So in answer to the question of what colors do fish see?

      Well, for fish that are not colour blind, all of them including UV colouring that we cannot even see ourselves.
      What humans think is black or too dark to see in the darker depths of the ocean becomes more metallic and vibrant the lower they drop.
      These darker colours attract your target species just as well as the lighter, shinier colours as they are distinguishable when other spectrum variants have already lost their pigment.

      We have all caught fish at night so we know that there is enough light from the moon and stars for fish that are in shallower and murkier waters to find their prey. Vibrations, smell and shape having a large part to do with this as well as lumo beads.
       
      So do not be scared to mix it up with the colour chart that is written above.
      What works for you, in all honesty, is what works for you.
      This is probably because of where you are used to fishing you can rely on experience and first-hand knowledge. But do not be afraid to follow this guide as you will be pleasantly surprised with the results.
      trigger fish caught on flasher rigs

      Having a range of different colour flashers or lures is always your best option when heading out fishing.

      If your tried and tested colouring is not working mix it up.

      With Better Tackles Rapid Release Rigs this process will take you less than 2 minutes. We don’t just help increase your hookups but also give you a better experience each and every time when you are out on the water pursuing your next PB.





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