A boilie takes its name in general from its main base mix ingredient. Fishmeal boilies contain a good percentage of fishmeal, birdfood boilies a good percentage of birdfood etc. Some boilies contain a mixture of several ingredients, e.g. both fishmeal and birdfood.
There seems to be some confusion when I talk to anglers about birdfood or seed baits. In general I like to refer to baits that contain crushed seeds as seed baits, and baits made out of egg-biscuit based birdfoods, such as Nectarblend and Red as birdfood baits. Again a lot of these baits are mixtures of the two.
If you are new to bait making start with the 50/50 base mixes. All the ingredients can be bought from the local supermarket and healthfood shop. About £1.50 will buy you enough soya flour and semolina for about 4 boilie mixes, which will make several hundred boilies. You will also need your eggs, flavour and sweetener.
Nothing to Sticky.
What is important when selecting ingredients for a base mix is that nothing sticky is used as a major ingredient. As an example try getting some ordinary flour, make it into a paste with water or eggs and try rolling the paste into balls. It will stick to your fingers like glue, which is the last thing you want. Now try doing the same with soya flour, the resulting paste is not sticky and can be rolled into balls.
Semolina is an ideal bulk ingredient as it isn't sticky, rolls well into a paste, hardens during boiling (when mixed with eggs) and has a neutral taste / smell - so it doesn't mask your chosen flavour or other base mix ingredients.
A Starting Point.
I have caught a lot of carp on the base mixes listed in this section. They are still as good today as they were a few years ago. I can honestly say that I think have only ever bought about 3 bags of ready made base mix in my life.
Many people see them as a starting point, I know that from the number of emails I receive. One of the great things about making your own bait is being able change things and experiment. That's the real way to learn about bait, so I hope these recipes give you a good framework to work from. If you don't want to change anything, add a good flavour and they will catch plenty as they are.