Monday, February 9, 2009

Bonefishing Florida

Let us talk about bonefishing Florida, why not, as they are the hardest fighting saltwater fish that there are to some degree. As example, a 10 pound bonefish will give you a better fight than any other saltwater fish that is out there weighing at 10 pounds. So basically, pound for pound bonefish are the hardest fighting fish there are, and they love to hang around Florida. When a bonefish hits, it will make a long run, they can easily pull a hundred yards off of the fishing reel in the matter of seconds, so you will need a drag system to catch them. We will get into a little more on bonefishing Florida and the kind of tackle and bait you will need to successfully catch them, but let’s learn a little bit more about them first shall we?

They are edible, but most anglers just release them back into the water and catch them just for the sport of fishing because they are so fun to hook up with. Most people avoid trying to eat bonefish because of the amount of bones that are in there body, hence there name. I mean they do not even serve bonefish on the menu at the Bonefish Grill!

Okay, so they are very picky about what kind of water temperature they like to be in, and this will range mostly from 72-80 degrees. So if you are bonefishing Florida you will want to look for them in the south part of Florida, although they can be found in some cases in the northern part of Florida most anglers will not try particularly to catch them on purpose. The all time record for the biggest bonefish that has been caught weighs in at 19 pounds. They are typically a flats fish, and if you are serious about bonefishing Florida then you would try places like the Biscayne Bay or the Florida Keys, there are many other places they can be found, basically all of south Florida but these have been known to be some hot spots.

So when you are bonefishing Florida we will go over some of the equipment you will need, first off you will need a good flats boat since that is where they are found most often. If you do not have a flats boat or access to one and really want to catch some bonefish then you should look into getting a charter captain that will take you out for bonefish, they can be found all around Florida.

Another essential item that you will need, which is just as important as a fishing rod and reel is some Polarized sunglasses. You will need to spot these fish swimming the flats and without Polarized sunglasses it will be more difficult to spot them. Once you spot them you just cast away at them, trying not to land directly on them and spook them away.

As for the kind of fishing tackle you will need when bonefishing Florida, is you definitely need a reel that holds at least 200 yards of line, monofilament would be my choice when fishing for bonefish. I would use a medium sized fishing rod, and a spinning reel. The pound test of line I would keep at about 10 pound test, give or take a couple of pounds with a 30 pound test leader at about a foot and a half. My bait of choice when bone fishing Florida would be live shrimp, hook them through the head and pinch the tail off to give off a little more scent to fish and let them know that there is some bait in the water. A size 1 or 2 hook will get the job done, and have a couple of split shots about 12 inches on the leader line to make sure that you can get a good cast off. You do not want to much weight on the line as it could spook the bone fish when you cast up right next to it.

You can also catch bonefish on a fly rod, and it is practiced by many anglers, but I will not be going over how to do that because it is like a science with the set up you will need and I have not had much experience fly fishing for bonefish. If you do like to keep them and eat them, there is a daily 1 bag limit per person, and with a minimum size of 18”, there is no closed season when bonefishing Florida.

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2 comments:

The Fishermens Life said...

bonefishing is the best especially with a 7wt flyrod. They will run your whole spool of line off.

Anonymous said...

Polaroid sunglasses? LMAO!!!