Written by: Eugene Chong
Length: 3” (reviewed), but also offered as a 2”, 4”, and 5”
Colours: 30+ Different Colours Offered – which include: Moebi, Watermelon Pepper, Cinnamon Blue Flake, Scuppernong, Green Pumpkin Pepper, June Bug, Black Blue Flake, Lime Chart, Green Pumpkin Blue Flake, Tenaga, Metapenaeus burkenroadi, Amezari, Ghost Shrimp, Green Pumpkin Natural Red Orange, Impact Blue, Natural Pro Blue2, Orange Pepper, Pearl Glow
Characteristics: Soft-plastic; Scented (Squid/Shrimp)
Price (approx.): $10-$20/7-pack
There is a certain mystique around Japanese lure companies especially for the North American consumer. Sitting at the forefront of the Japanese Domestic Market (JDM) tackle industry is Osprey Spiritual Performer, more commonly referred to as OSP, which has become synonymous with quality and innovation. Although OSP is one of Japan’s largest lure manufacturers, they are still fairly unknown in North America except by tackle enthusiasts and select tournament anglers.
The OSP DoLive Craw has climbed the ranks to be one of the more popular craw-style soft baits in Japan, and rightfully so, this bait is downright lethal. When the bite gets tough this bait will get the job done to help you fill that livewell.
At first glance, it is easy to see why this bait is so effective. OSP has done a remarkable job at making this bait look and perform like a real specimen. From the lifelike pincers that are designed to oscillate freely to the antennae looking appendage that quivers with the slightest movement, the realistic action of this bait will entice even the wariest of fish into biting. It is also important to note the durable, high quality plastic used for the bait is also scented with a unique compound (shrimp/squid) that further helps to differentiate the DoLive Craw from the other similar baits.
Taking a closer look at each component of the bait in its function and design, one will notice a lot of thought went into the design of the DoLive Craw. Each feature of the bait contributes to a specific action and water displacement which play to a number of the bass’ predatory instincts. The first detail, which is also in my opinion the most significant feature of the bait, is the Swing Hands (aptly named by OSP). The natural fluttering action of the claws is truly outstanding and I can see why this bait is so effective on the drop or retrieve.
Another element of the bait that makes the OSP DoLive Craw so effective is the Hula Hige. The word “hige” (pronounced hee-geh) means beard or whiskers in Japanese, which is what one will think when looking at this part of the bait. This feature allows the bait to have a subtle yet constant action even when the bait is at rest, which mimics the action of the antenna/antennule of a craw very accurately.
The versatility of this diminutive bait is quite impressive as it can be rigged in many effective ways. However, I find the 3” DoLive Craw is the perfect size for the drop shot. When using the DoLive Craw on a drop shot, I will drop the rod tip from time-to-time and allow the bait to flutter down to the bottom which has proven to be quite effective. Another deadly way to rig this bait is on a football style shaky jighead where I will drag and hop it around structure.
Now you might be tempted to head out and check the OSP DoLive Craw at your local tackle shop, but like many JDM products this bait is mainly available through on-line retailers and information about the bait in English is quite limited. If you are lucky enough to locate a retailer it will be hard to ignore the price tag since a bag of seven baits range anywhere between $10 and $20 per bag. Now one may question whether the bait is worth it, but in my experience the DoLive Craw is a quality bait and a proven producer for me so I am rarely without a bag or two with me when I’m out on the water.
Hopefully OSP will make a concerted effort to push into the North American market, because like the DoLive Craw the ingenuity and quality of their other baits is truly something special. So, if you ever come across a bag of these baits be sure to give them a try because they are definitely a game changer.