Trout are a top caliber sport fish, no matter the sub-species they more often than not give the fisherman a great fight, as long as the gear the fisherman is using is not overrated. Fishing for 5-pound brown trout with a 20-pound weight class rod and reel set up with 40 pound test line is not exactly sport fishing. It is more akin to reeling in dead weight. For the safety of the trout, or other sport fish species, and the sincerity of the sport, or art, of fishing are why the use of corn is illegal for fishing in some States and Provinces.
Many sport fish, like bass, catfish, pickerel and trout, will eat kernels of corn, making it a very attractive bait for people who just care about catching something, not the sport, just the meal. But corn is very bad for sport fish, and can cause major stomach problems and even death when ingested. Corn swells up when inside a fish’s stomach, causing blockages within their digestive system. And, corn has no nutritional value for sport fish like trout or pickerel, so if the trout nibbles the corn kernel(s), and gets away, it could have a painful death awaiting it, due to the bait that you offered it.
The worst possible thing that you could do would be to chum the area that you are fishing with a can of corn, or even ears of corn. It is much like throwing a handful of worms into a creek’s long, deep pool, and returning to fish with worms the next day. The fish eat the worms, then are tricked into believing it is a safe meal, and when you fish the pool with worms, it turns into a feeding frenzy. But worms are a good meal for sport fish, whereas if you use corn for chumming, many fish could die.
Fishing is supposed to be fun, with the fight being the best part of the trip. We don’t use flashlights at night, because that’s cheating (and against many State’s and Province’s regulations), nor do we throw dynamite into a lake and scoop up the fish that end up floating on the surface. And, we don’t use corn as bait, because if the fish eats the offered kernel, it could be fatal for the fish, or, as they say in New Jersey, the fish could end up swimming with the fishes.
There are many ways to cheat the fishing rules and regulations as set out by the Department of Game, Fish and Parks. When a fisherman, usually people who illegally fish and sell their catches to restaurants, gets caught breaking these rules, major fines and the loss of fishing privileges for many years, and up to a life-time fishing ban can be levied.
Using corn to fish falls into the categories of using whatever works the easiest to catch fish, and just downright lazy fishing. Neither of them would endear the fisherman to other, more responsible fisherman. Using corn to fish is very much like feeding bread to geese. It works, they come close or take the bait, but it is very bad for the fish or bird, and the bird’s young could be at risk as well if they are still dependent upon their mothers for sustenance.
Please fish smart, and fish responsibly.