You’re approaching the sweet spot of the drift, the part where on the last pass, your buddy boxed a 6-pound fluke. Just as your bait approaches the danger zone, a few machine-gun taps transmit through the line. You swing the rod to scare off the small tail-nipping scup or sea robin, but you’re not certain if you’re fishing with a full trailer when you bounce your bucktail into the sweet spot.
This is exactly the feeling that made me excited to hear about Z-Man’s fluke-specific offering, the DoormatadorZ, last year.
The DoormatadorZ is a 6-inch, grub-style soft bait designed to spruce up a bucktail or jighead. It’s made from ElaZtech, Z-Man’s proprietary soft-bait material that is resistant to tearing or being ripped apart by toothy fish. What this means for a fluke trailer is that there’s no more worrying that a scup or snapper blue snipped off your lure’s tail before you got it in front of a fluke.
The DoormatadorZ comes in eight colors, from the staples of chartreuse, white, and pink/white to colors like a yellow-over-blue “Fusilier” that was designed for Australian fisheries but has been a hot color for Northeast fluke. Of the offerings, the salmon-over-white combination in “Coconut Ice” is my favorite.
ElaZtech’s other properties also make it well suited for a fluke trailer. Despite being tough enough to withstand bluefish bites, it’s soft and supple, giving it a fluid action even on a slow retrieve; it’s also buoyant so, at rest, the tail floats off the bottom.
Of course, another major quality of a good fluke trailer is its ability to hold and disperse scent. In talking with Glenn Young, National Sales Manager for Z-Man Products, I learned that another property of the ElaZtech material is its ability to absorb oil-based scents. Before being packaged, Glenn explained, the DoormatadorZ is tumbled in Pro-Cure Flounder Pounder Super Gel Scent.
According to Pro-Cure, a major manufacturer of fishing scents and attractants, the Flounder Pounder gel is made from real, fresh bait, and “supercharged with amino acids and bite stimulants.”
Glenn noted that the bait can be added back to the Pro Cure after fishing (or after a few drifts) to reabsorb gel and ensure it is sending out a trail of fluke-attracting scent as it bounces along the bottom.
Glenn said the DoormatadorZ is becoming popular with anglers outside the fluke fishery as well, including the surf, where fishermen have found that they make an enticing and nearly indestructible bucktail trailer.
Rigging the DoormatadorZ, as with all ElaZtech products, is best with barbed or wire bait-keepers or collars. Most bucktails and teasers made for fluke today feature wire bait-keepers capable of retaining a DoormatadorZ Grub.