Statistics show that the number of anglers in the country is growing at a slow, steady rate. But these new fishermen need help and guidance from experienced anglers to help them make the jump from enthusiast to full-fledged fishermen. With its new MicroCritter series of high-quality artificials, due to hit tackle shelves in the fall, Rebel will take a huge step toward that end. The series includes the MicroHopper, MicroMinnow, MicroCrawfish and MicroPop-R, but rather than simply scaling down the larger versions, Rebel's designers developed lures that not only catch fish, but are much safer for inexperienced anglers to handle as they make the transition from worm-and-bobber fishing to casting artificial baits. Instead of tiny trebles, which can be difficult to remove from a fish's jaw and pose three times the hazard potential, the lure maker equipped each lure with a single barbless hook. "Young anglers need lures that are safe for them to use by themselves," says general manager Bruce Stanton. "That's what we made with the MicroCritter series—a high-quality line of lures that are fun for kids to use and safer than what's on the market." "We talk about these lures being safer for kids to use, but they're also better for the fish, too," he adds. "With easier hook removal, a youngster can get the fish back into the water faster, ensuring it's there to help create another angler in the future." Designed for bass, crappies, trout, bluegills and other species young anglers like to catch, MicroCritters will retail for $3.99 each.