A jigging spoon tipped with a minnow head is a popular presentation for putting late-winter perch on ice. It’s a deadly combination. But when jumbos get finicky, there is a better way—a dropper rig.

A dropper rig is simply a small single or treble hook hanging 2 to 5 inches below a spoon on a light chain, monofilament or superline tether. Dropper rigs present a smaller target below a larger attractor and are easy for tentative fish to inhale.

Buy a pre-tied rig or tie your own. Either way, remove the spoon’s treble and add the dropper to the split ring. Tip the dropper with waxworms or Eurolarvae, which often produce more tough-bite hookups than a minnow head.