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Best Artificial Shrimp Lures? Gulp, Vudu, or D.O.A Shrimp

Any fisherman worth his salt will have a few artificial shrimp in his tackle box. However, with so many plastic shrimp on the market, how do you know which is the best when it comes to catching fish? 

No problem!

We’ve got you covered!

After countless hours of testing dozens of different brands, colors, and styles, we selected what we think are the 3 best artificial shrimp lures on the market today.

Most fishermen are partial to a specific brand of artificial shrimp. Some (myself included) swear by Gulp shrimp, while others only fish with D.O.A shrimp. You also have a few “new kids on the block”, such as the new Vudu shrimp by Egret. In this article, we’re going to break down each of these three lures and once and for all determine which is the best artificial shrimp lure.

The lures were judged based on price, durability, scent quality, and their ability to actually catch fish.


Best Artificial Shrimp Lures

Berkley Gulp Shrimp

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Gulp shrimp were the first artificial shrimp that I ever used, which is why I’m probably a little partial to them. That and the fact that I caught a 27 inch redfish on the third cast on the first day that I tried them out. I still catch tons of fish with these lures each and every trip out on the water.

Price

Gulp shrimp cost around $6 for a pack of 6 or you can buy larger quantities. A 11.5 oz bucket contains between 15-20 shrimp will cost you about $25 bucks. Now this may not seem too expensive on the surface, but when you stumble upon a pack of thieving pinfish who keep biting the tails off and rendering your bait useless, it can get a little pricey.

Durability

The biggest and pretty much only complaint that I have with the Gulp shrimp are that they are not very durable. They’re great at attracting fish, but don’t stand a chance when trash fish keep biting them in half.

Another issue I have with their durability is that they have to stay moist, whether that be soaking in their juice or in the water. If not, they will shrivel and dry up, making them virtually useless. This means that as soon as you’re done fishing with this bait, you’ll need to immediately return it to the special juice or to the water.

Scent Quality

When it comes to scent, nothing comes close to the Berkley Gulp shrimp, or for that matter any Berkley Gulp bait. The key to these shrimp is the secret juice that Berkley soaks them in. I’m not sure what’s in that stuff, but it works. The really cool part is that when you’re done fishing with the bait, you can place it back in the juice and recharge it to it’s original potency.

Fishability

Berkley Gulp shrimp are unlike the two other artificial shrimp on this list in that they don’t come pre-rigged with a hook and weight inserted in them. This gives you tons of flexibility on how you choose to fish it. You can opt for your favorite jig head or rig it weedless if you like.

Berkley shrimp move okay through the water, but in my opinion severely lack in their appearance when compared to some other brands on the market including the Vudu shrimp, which made our final cut.

Pros

  1. They come in a highly scented juice that attracts fish like nothing else I’ve ever seen.

  2. Very versatile in that they can catch anything from flounder and snook to redfish and even tarpon.

  3. They come in several different colors, including my favorite, the “penny with chartreuse tail.”

  4. They don’t come pre-rigged, so you’re free to rig as needed with a jig or weedless.

Cons

  1. They attract tons of fish, even the ones you don’t want to catch such as pinfish and saltwater catfish.

  2. They are not very durable. If you leave them out of the water or their juice, they will dry up and be unusable.

  3. Not very lifelike, especially while in the water.

While some of the cons may be a turnoff for some, let me just say that the number one requirement for a fishing lure should be to catch fish and the Berkley Gulp Shrimp will not let you down. You may need to get a second job just to pay for them, but at least you’ll have something to show for it.


D.O.A Artificial Shrimp

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Next on the list is the D.O.A. shrimp. These shrimp seem to be the go-to shrimp when it comes to fishing with a popping cork. I usually don’t fish with popping corks, but after seeing a few videos on YouTube of fishermen who swear by this combination, I couldn’t resist trying them out.

The D.O.A. shrimp did not let me down! After only a few casts, I caught a nice 22” spotted sea trout. Was it the lure or just plain luck? That question was quickly answered when on my next cast I hooked into another decent size trout.

Price

For about $10 dollars you can get a pack of 3 D.O.A shrimp lures, which again seems a little pricey, especially for a soft bodied lure. You can also buy one that’s already pre-rigged with a popping cork for about the same cost.

Durability

D.O.A. shrimp are much more durable than the other two artificial shrimp on this list. I’m not sure if it’s because their scent quality is not as potent as the Gulp shrimp, but I didn’t have any issues with bait fish biting the tails off. Also, you don’t have to worry about them drying up like the Gulp shrimp or melting to other plastic lures like the Vudu shrimp. These are definitely the most durable of our three picks.

Scent Quality

D.O.A makes their shrimp by combining real shrimp brine into their baits. You really can’t smell any scent from them, but I’m pretty sure it’s there considering how effective they were at catching fish.

Fishability

The biggest drawback to the D.O.A. shrimp in my opinion is that they come pre-rigged with hook and sinker already embedded into their body. This will limit you as to how you can fish the bait. If you want a smaller hook, you’re out of luck. If you want to add more weight so that you can cast a little longer on windy days, you’ll need to add a split shot above the lure.

With that being said, some fishermen welcome this as it saves them a little money.

Pros

  1. Works great in all conditions, especially when fished behind a popping cork.

  2. Comes ready to fish right out of the package.

  3. Flavored with brine shrimp for maximum scent.

  4. Come in 50 different colors.

  5. Extremely durable.

Cons

  1. At around $10 for just 3 lures, they can be really expensive.

  2. Like the Gulp shrimp, they are not very realistic.

  3. Comes pre-rigged with a weighted hook, so you can’t use a jig head if you wanted to.

I really liked the D.O.A. shrimp! I caught some fish with it which is always a plus, but I’m not too keen about spending $10 for 3 lures. With that being said, they are much more durable than the Gulp shrimp so you should get more life out of each lure, which should compensate for their cost.


Vudu Shrimp

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One of the new kids on the block when it comes to artificial shrimp lures is the Vudu shrimp by Egret baits. This realistic looking shrimp is quickly gaining a following among saltwater fishermen, which is why I had no choice but to check it out for myself.

After several trips on the water, I must admit that I quickly gained much respect for the Vudu shrimp. Of the the lures, it resembles an actual live shrimp the most. It even has a serrated tail that wiggles freely in the water. It’s life-likeness fooled trout, redfish, and a couple of snook during the time that I tested it..

Price

Out of the three artificial shrimp that we tested, the Vudu shrimp are the most expensive. You can expect to pay roughly $13 for 2 shrimp, depending on what length, style, and where you buy them. Are they really worth their cost? Ultimately I’ll leave that up to you to decide, but I will say that I will definitely keep a few in my tackle box at all times.

Durability

Super strong! Unlike most soft plastic lures, the Vudu Shrimp is made out of TPE and not PVC plastic. This is the same material that flip-flops and tennis shoes are made from. It also has a Kevlar weave throughout the body making it super strong and durable.

There have been some claims by others on YouTube to have caught over two hundred fish before needing to replace it.

The only weakness as far as durability that I can see is in the tail. It’s serrated, which gives it a super attractive motion as it moves through the water, and although strong, I could see it easily getting ripped apart by a hungry gator trout or other toothy gamefish.

Scent Quality

This is where the Vudu shrimp falls short in comparison to the other two shrimp on this list. To my knowledge from what I’ve read through extensive research, it is not scented. However, with a tail that has so much action in the water, maybe you don’t need scent.

Fishability

Like the D.O.A shrimp, the Vudu shrimp comes pre-rigged with a weight and hook, which I’m not too crazy about. Other than that, Egret baits who make the Vudu shrimp have got themselves a real winner. It moves through the water with a life-likeness like no other shrimp on the market.

It also works well when fished behind a popping cork.

Pros

  1. Very lifelike! Totally resembles a real live shrimp.

  2. Made from TPE which a super tough and durable plastic. Also has Kevlar woven into it.

  3. Comes in a variety of colors.

  4. According to some, it you can catch up to 200 fish on a single lure before it needs replaced.

Cons

  1. Comes pre-rigged, so you can’t adjust for certain condition such as wind and current.

  2. It’s serrated tail while attractive to fish, can potentially be ripped apart by toothy gamefish.

  3. At $13 for just 2 lures, they be pretty expensive.

Overall, the Vudu shrimp is a remarkable lure and one that I plan on using more of. Especially if I’m targeting trout and redfish behind a popping cork.


Final Thoughts

Well there you have it...my picks for what I believe are the best artificial shrimp lures being sold on the market today. If you haven’t tried one or if you’ve only tried one, my advice is to go out and buy all three and see which one you like best.

Personally, I’m still a Gulp shrimp guy! I love the fact that they don’t come pre-rigged and provide the flexibility to fish in many different conditions...even behind a popping cork. Their scent is also unmatched by anything on the market when it comes to soft plastics.

I would love to hear your thoughts and what you think is the best artificial shrimp lure. You can leave a comment below or send me a message through my contact form.

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