Topwater poppers, also known as "chuggers," are designed to ripple the surface of the water and cause popping or splashing sounds as you retrieve (or reel in) your lure [source: ExtremeLures.com]. Poppers come in styles and colors patterned to resemble many of the favorite snack choices of a hungry bass, including frogs, shad, bluegill and minnows. While the shape, color and size should be selected to match the baitfish that live in the waters you are fishing, all poppers have a cupped lip that creates the distinctive popping and splashing sounds you want the bass to hear when the lure is jerked sharply (or "chugged") out of the water [source: Moore].
The first topwater poppers were made from solid wood, and a few still are, but most are now molded from hard plastics. Topwater poppers can be used around grasses, stumps and shorelines, as well as in open water. In clear water, a popper on the surface can attract a bass from depths of more than 30 feet [source: Ratley]. Popular brand names include the Pop-R, Chug-N-Spit (so named because it "spits" water out as the lure is jerked back), Chug-Bug and Hula Popper.
Fish not biting at the top? Despite its unappealing name, the next lure on our list can help you pull in even the most lethargic bottom-feeding bass.