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Swimbaits are a loosely defined class of fishing lure
Fishing lure
A fishing lure is an object attached to the end of a fishing line which is designed to resemble and move like the prey of a fish. The purpose of the lure is to use movement, vibration, and colour to catch the fish's attention so it bites the hook...

s that imitate fish and tend to be distinct in design from a typical crankbait.

Swimbaits are usually different from crankbaits by the way they generate lure action. Some are rubber "paddle tail" lures that appear to swim when the tail flutters during retrieve. Some are jointed baits that wave like a flag in the water when retrieved, without any obvious mechanism to generate motion. Some are large jointed crankbaits or crankbait/plastic lure hybrids.

Swimbaits originated as lures designed to imitate the planted
rainbow trout
Rainbow trout
The rainbow trout is a species of salmonid native to tributaries of the Pacific Ocean in Asia and North America. The steelhead is a sea run rainbow trout usually returning to freshwater to spawn after 2 to 3 years at sea. In other words, rainbow trout and steelhead trout are the same species....

 in Southern California
Southern California
Southern California is a megaregion, or megapolitan area, in the southern area of the U.S. state of California. Large urban areas include Greater Los Angeles and Greater San Diego. The urban area stretches along the coast from Ventura through the Southland and Inland Empire to San Diego...

A reservoir , artificial lake or dam is used to store water.Reservoirs may be created in river valleys by the construction of a dam or may be built by excavation in the ground or by conventional construction techniques such as brickwork or cast concrete.The term reservoir may also be used to...

s that
Largemouth Bass
Largemouth bass
The largemouth bass is a species of black bass in the sunfish family native to North America . It is also known as widemouth bass, bigmouth, black bass, bucketmouth, Potter's fish, Florida bass, Florida largemouth, green bass, green trout, linesides, Oswego bass, southern largemouth...

 and Striped Bass
Striped bass
The striped bass is the state fish of Maryland, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and the state saltwater fish of New York, Virginia, and New Hampshire...

fed on. They were larger and more lifelike imitations than most
available mass produced lures.

The term swimbait is often used to indicate plastic "paddle tail" lures, regardless of size or appearance.

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