Securing Baits At Sea

A frustrating situation to any part of offshore fishermen is to run out of bait. And it's even worse when the fish are on a feed. Adding insult to injury is watching nearby fishermen catching fish with baits they have just secured from a nearby fish haven while your fishing party scores a big zero.

To be a complete offshore fisherman, you must have a full understanding of how game fish relate to a wide variety of baitfish. There are many times, while offshore angling, that nearby striking fish will only feed on baitfish which are generic to their present feeding grounds.

A good technique in combating this age old fishing problem is to store a couple of light tackle spinning rods, already rigged with bait catcher hooks. Baitcatchers are made up with a series of small gold hooks and feathers, ranging in sizes from #8 to #16. The bait catchers come pre-rigged on a cardboard package. All you will need to do is tie it on the end of your terminal line and attach a one ounce bank sinker to the tag end of the bait catcher rig.

During your next offshore fishing trip, simply turn on your fish finder and look for baitfish schools down below. Once located, the baitfish will show up as clouds or dark spots on your fish finder screen. Simply drop the bait catcher rigs down to the exact depth of the school and begin to jig slowly. The baitfish will strike the fold feathered hooks. Continue to jig the bait catcher setup until all of the hooks are filled with baitfish.

A good tip here is to make sure that you don't bring the baitcatcher rig out of the water with just one live bait on a single hook. Leaving the one live bait on the rig will prompt nearby baitfish to fill up the remaining hooks.

Baitfish can also be caught by dropping a small hook to the bottom that is baited up with a small piece of cut bait, squid or shrimp.

Cast netting at sea can be very difficult as the baitfish will often run out from under the sinking net in deep clear water.

Reprinted from Humminbird tips