The Tango Shad, since its release almost four years ago, has carved a reputation as one of the best flathead lures available. Its small profile, its ability to swim well with or against the current, its ability to clear weed and the ease of use have made this lure a regular on the end of many trollers’ rods.

It’s not just the casual angler who is making ends meet with this lure though, keen tournament anglers are using this lure as a key part of their fishing strategy and it’s working. This was never more evident than the 2016 Flathead Classic when Team Wilson took out the event by cunningly trolling Tango Shads where others feared to troll.

Further to this both Team Wilson and Team Zerek finished in the Top 5 at the 2015 Flathead Classic and both teams attributed the Tango Shad as being very important for their success.

In 2014 Team Wilson won the two-person team event and almost pulled off a massive upset by winning overall against the 3-person teams – the majority of their fish coming while trolling with the Tango Shad!

It’s a hell of a good lure if flathead are on your fishing radar.

So what are some of the tips the gun trollers can pass on to help you get more fish on the Tango Shad?

Let’s have a look.

The Tango Shad is a great lure for trolling in water depths from 1.7m to 1m. If you can stay in this range, you’ll certainly catch fish. You can troll the Tango Shad in tight, and by tight we mean less than 10m behind the boat, and fish it shallower than a metre, but ideally you’d look for 1.4m of depth. Alternatively you can troll the Tango Shad further back and get it down to 1.7m.

The most important ingredient for success when trolling is keeping your lure in the water. The Tango Shad clears weed very easily with a sharp flick of the rod tip. This is a skill you need to master to get better results. The trick with this is to understand the action of the lure on your rod tip and the moment that changes, give the rod a couple of quick flicks to clear the weed and check it for the right action. This saves a lot of time reeling the lure in and picking the weed off and then resetting the lure.


Trolling with the current will lead to less fouling of the lure on weed in weedy areas. This is because the weed lays down in the direction the lure is travelling and the lure glides over the weed as opposed to punching into the weed if you’re trolling against the current. This again is about time in the water. It can also be argued that fish prefer to feed into the current and a baitfish coming down current looks more natural.

A light drag setting is an important ingredient. With the small hooks of the Tango Shad, occasionally the fish is hooked on the outside of the mouth in the skin of the fish’s face. A light drag setting will allow the hooks to stay in the fish rather than tearing out under a heavy drag. It’s also a good move if the fish swallows the lure and is shaking its head. The sharp teeth wear through leaders very quickly and a lighter drag setting reduces the wear on the leader because the tension is not so high. Try it yourself. Rub sandpaper over a loose leader and see how long it takes to break. Now do the same over a tight leader. The results will stagger you. And lastly, a heavy drag setting can straighten hooks. Keep in mind this lure is only 50mm long and the hooks are necessarily light and small. Fish light drags for better results.

Choosing a colour is always controversial but the team is having some real success on colours that contain just a hint of UV. Yes it’s flavour of the month, but all the boys definitely think there is something in the UV highlights on a lure – another point worth considering when choosing the lure for the day.


Hopefully these tips will help you get more from your time trolling with the Zerek Tango Shad.

Wilson Fishing

About Wilson Fishing

wilson fishing Wilson Fishing is an Aussie family owned wholesale fishing tackle supplier and manufacturer. We specialise in developing quality products in Australia for Australian fishing conditions, employing over 50 staff members Australia wide. Wilson Fishing is famous for our Live Fibre range of Aussie built, Aussie designed fishing rods. Founded in 1946, Wilson Fishing is a 100% Australian owned and operated business. Our history has seen us develop relationships with some of the worlds premier fishing and marine companies, including Kilwell, Mustad and Surecatch and now Zerek Innovations.


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