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match the Hatch for swimming plugs. Depends on where you are and the bait that is in the water that you are trying to imitate. Spring/ Summer bombers,rebels, yozuri's, shad bodys, small metal lips, Darters, small pencil popers, poppers all have there place. Bucktail is huge but not a plug. Late Summer and Fall big swimmers poppers darters metal lips pencil poppers ect. Bunker in the spring changes some things. Hope this helps.
 

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Given that most fish swim under the surface and not on the surface, diving plugs do therefore tend to swim through a fish's preferred space.

Diving plugs can dig into the rough currents and surging waves of the littoral zone. The plug nuts choose their weapons to swim in nasty NE winds and still look tasty to a bass, whereas your typical pencil popper couldn't dance in those conditions.

Swimmers and darters offer different opportunities in different situations and I'm more comfortable with the former in calmer scenarios in the surf and sod-bank realm than tossing darters into rough seas.

I do like the suspending mullet-esque plugs as they do a number on specks, grey trout, puppy drum, and rockfish.

I'd hire a guide or tag along with a veteran lure fisherman to pick his brain as you pick through his plug bag.

That's how I learned ... or you can patronize your local tackle shop who can show you the right lures for local conditions, forage, and species.
 
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