Fishing is a $50 billion industry in America, and artificial lures have dominated the market for decades. Livingston Lures, based in San Antonio, has spent nearly a decade developing and marketing a high-tech lure with a built-in circuit board and speaker.
Erick Arnoldson, with Livingston Lures, tells KSAT, “It’s the only lure in the world that mimics the baitfish. Companies have been using fishing lures for over 50 years with a rattle inside. We’re the only company that has the actual biological sound of a baitfish. That’s what sets us apart.”
Because of the electronic components, Arnoldson claims his lures cost around a dollar more than other lures. So, how do you describe the sound of a baitfish? It’s a low chirp of some type. According to Arnoldson, the creator of the lure was inspired by a melodic greeting card.
Arnoldson also said that “if I could get a Christmas card to make sound, I can put it in a lure. So, we took it over in 2012. We started going to all the major trade shows and the rest is history,”.
A soda-can-sized speaker designed to substitute bait in Bering Sea crab pots is also available from Livingston Lures. The company was even featured on the television show “Deadliest Catch.” They traveled to Alaska, according to Arnoldson, and introduced their “Crab Caller” to Alaskan fishermen. He claims the product exceeded his and his team’s wildest hopes, and that it might help reduce the reliance on natural bait for crab harvesting in the world’s oceans.
Livingston doesn’t have a storefront and is based in a run-down warehouse off Loop 410, but they have a sizable online and social media presence. Bass Pro Shops is the company’s largest customer, according to the company. If you go to any Bass Pro shop around the country, you’ll find a small piece of San Antonio for sale, complete with sharp treble hooks and chirp.