Saltwater fishermen who love to fish coastal and inshore waters for speckled trout and redfish soon will have a new weapon: the DeepJerk Minnow from Mann’s Bait Company in Eufala, Ala.

The DeepJerk Minnow is the newest member of the artificial lure manufacturer’s saltwater lineup, according to Mann’s Scott Wall.

It is 5 1/4 inches long (the actual length of the body is 5 inches) and weighs 5/8-ounce. It is armed with Eagle Claw 4X hooks to give anglers another viable artificial lure in their arsenal.

“Well, we’ve got a pretty good following with our deeper trolling baits, our Stretch25+ and Stretch 30+,” Wall said. “We wanted to produce a high-quality jerkbait with a nice paint job for the inshore market; we wanted to give it a nice finish and do it in more popular colors.”

Its main victims will be redfish, speckled trout and even flounder, he said.

“It didn’t take us that long. It’s something we’ve been working on for the past year,” Wall said.

He believes it will be a big hit for several reasons, including the Mann’s Bait Company name attached to the DeepJerk Minnow. 

“We’ve got nearly every saltwater dealer familiar with the Stretch 25+ and Stretch 30+, from Texas to Rhode Island,” Wall said. “We’ve got some good saltwater baits. We’ve got some good saltwater dealers that can sell a good saltwater bait with Mann’s name on it.”

He said it comes in eight popular colors.

Its most-attractive feature is the fact that after you cast it it goes to a couple feet and sits there before rising very slowly, Wall said.

Most importantly in many eyes, Wall and Mann’s Bait Company director of operations Mike McPherson of Eufala said, is the fact it is made totally in the United States. 

McPherson, who lives three miles from the Mann’s factory, made this artificial lure happen. The 56-year-old outdoorsman has been in the artificial lure designing business most of his life.

McPherson, well, he’s like a plastic surgeon. All it took to transform an old model into what promises to be a fish-catching machine was a tummy tuck and a nose job, so to speak.

It is a reincarnation of an artificial lure that appeared in the 2004 Mann’s Bait Company catalog and was listed as “under development” and marketed in 2005.

For whatever reason — too many choices on the market, perhaps — it didn’t take off.

“The (DeepJerk Minnow) is a mutation, a hybrid, the result from modifying the old Loudmouth Jerk Rattlin’ Bait,” McPherson said. “I slimmed the belly down a little bit, and increased the length and width of the lip to get it to 6- to 8-feet on 12-pound line.”

These days, the veteran artificial lure designer said, the task at hand is made much easier with modern technology. Way back when, he said there was a Frankenstein approach when artificial lure designers took established baits on the market and made variations.

With today’s 3-D modeling capabilities, it often takes only four months from the drawing board to the manufacturing stage, he said. That’s what took place with this artificial lure.

Today’s JerkbBait Minnow has more internal cavity, McPherson said. The chambers were altered, which allowed for tweaking of the buoyancy by adding or subtracting weight.

“Obviously, the more internal cavity you have, the more flotation you have,” he said.

His creation is designated “slightly neutral to positive buoyant,” important terms in the industry and to the anglers who use them.

As a side note, did you know water temperature influences neutral or positive buoyancy? He said when the water is cold, an artificial lure’s body contracts and gets heavier.

“Any good manufacturer will look at any kind of bait as neutral buoyant. When we’re building a lure that is neutrally buoyant, we have to be careful,” he said.

The internal weight system makes long casts a breeze, he said.

And toughness is built into the artificial lure, a hard body model encased in butyrate — the material that makes up a Craftsman screwdriver handle.

It isn’t a petroleum product, McPherson said. In fact, it’s a by-product of fresh tree fiber. It is impact resistant, easily paintable and biodegradable, he said.

So it can take as many hard knocks as you can give it and keep on delivering your favorite fish.

For more information on the DeepJerk Minnow and the new MX Stik and other Mann’s Bait Company products, call 334-687-5716 or log on to www.mannsbait.com