I've been using fresh caught shad either cut shad or whole as bait for blues. I have not been catching as many fish on the smaller (2-3 inch) shad with the black dot right behind the gill plate than I have with the bigger shad.. I have been getting excellent bites on the larger shad (5-6 inches, no spot behind gill plate). The best action has come on cut heads. An angled cut from behind the head, back through the lateral fin including the gut pocket. But I've also had some success on fillets made by running the knife along the back bone down to the tail (scales removed). I have a couple of questions for the B.O.C. members. #1 What are the names of these shad. I know that one is a gizzard and the other is ______?. Which one is which? #2 When fishing with the little shad, how are you fishing them? ie whole fish, or only heads, or only tails. I'm not very impressed with the whole body bait on a single shank 5-0 hook carolina rig method. I've tried the same method in the same water, at the same depth, and if I throw out one of those big shad heads I get actions in less than 10 minutes. Either them don't eat little shad or I'm presenting the bait in the wrong way, any thoughts? #3 I'm not landing all the bites I get when I use big shad heads. I think some of the fish are smaller fish and the big baits are gets pulled out of their mouths when I try to set the hook. But judging by the speed with which some of these fish take the bait, I'm probably missing a few nice Blues. I have an open face Penn reel, set on clicker, and the fish will just take the bait and run flat out !!!. I've been playing with the time interval between the fish taking the bait and me trying to set the hook, but i'm not satisfied with my of hook up percentage. My two biggest fish were caught on trebles. In fact this is kinda ticking me off!!!.( note to self:remain calm take a deep breath). I was reading about other B.O.C. members who were using the curved shank hooks, It seemed like they were saying they had a better hook up percentage if they let the fish run alittle then tried to set the hook. Any Comments?. Lastly the little shad are moe abundent in my waters than are the bigger shad, so it's easier for me to get the little one than it is for me to get the big ones. What I need is an IDEAS ABOUT HOW TO FISH WITH LITTLE SHAD AND CATCH BIG FISH. Granted this might seem like an unreasonable question, But ... I'm also ticked about the little flat heads eating my "prime" big shad head blue baits. But that's a different discussion, cause I'll eat a flat head anyday. Talk to me B.O.C. I'm goin fishin this weekend !!!