<font color='#810541'>Prof, you are going to like this topic - it definitely involves science
Bear with me, I never was any good at short and concise answers, but it will be well worth the effort...
If you put a lugworm straight from the sand into the freezer you end up with a lugworm that turns to mush when you come to defrost/use it. Gutting the black lug is a way around this, but (whatever the 'experts' may tell us) it is not the best method as it does involve the loss of all the juicy guts of the worm.
Here comes the science...
The reason an ungutted lug becomes mush is that the water in the worm turns into ice crystals during the freezing process, and these ice crystals effectively break down the internal structure of the worm to the point that only the tougher skin remains and any worm structure is lost. When you defrost it you are left with a skin supported by nothing and end up with a pile of goo (not a very scientific term I agree but you get the idea)
Gutting the lug works by effectively removing the water from the worm and so no ice crystals form, and thus the worm does not get damaged - unfortunately, gutting also removes much of the scent from the worm (not good)
The key then to successfully freezing lug is to remove the water but retain the guts/scent of the worm. Once again we have to get scientific at this point...
Osmosis (go look it up on google) is the key, but I am not even going to attempt to explain/describe it - understanding it isn't important, and you don't need a science degree to apply it to freezing worms.
In laymans terms we need to draw water out of the worm before freezing This is easily achieved with the aid of cooking salt as follows:
1) place lots and lots of newspaper on the floor (I suggest you don't use the lounge floor or H.I.D. isnt gonna be happy)
2) spread the worms out on the newspaper
3) completely cover the worms in salt - you shouldnt be able to see them afterwards.
4) spread more newspaper on top
5) leave the worms for at least 8 hours - during this time the water will be drawn out of the worm into the salt.
6) After 8 hours (I leave mine overnight) you will find the salt and newspaper are wet through. Remove the worms from the salt and brush any excess salt of them - you will notice that they have shrunk and shrivelled up and are bendy twig like things - this i because there is no water left inside them. Put them in a plastic bag and pop into the freezer.
When you come to use them you will find that they are still flexible straight from the freezer and so are easy to thread onto the hook. Once you cast out the worm will swell up as water is drawn back into it (our friend osmosis again)
Try it and see. I am sure you will be pleasantly surprised at the quality of the 'frozen' worm. I was gob smacked when I first learned how to do this, and now rate the 'frozen' worm as better than fresh in some circumstances !!!
Goes without saying, that the better the quality of worm you put in, the better you will get out - no point trying this with punny small worms.</font>
<font color='#000000'>THANKS FOR THE ADVICE I WAS TOLD THE SCENT WAS IN THE SKIN THATS WHY YOU GUT THEM BUT THERES THAT MANY IDEAS OUT THERE.. SO IVE DONE BOTH FROZEN HALF WITH GUTS IN AND HALF WITHOUT SEE WHAT HAPPENS..</font>
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