This is part two of a two part article.
- FISHING TIP NUMBER ONE IS TO LEARN THE FISHING REGULATIONS FOR YOUR STATE
Before you start fishing you will want to learn the fishing regulations in your area. Your areas wildlife and fishing regulations department likely has printed regulations in pamphlet or magazine form, or a phone apps or website, with local fishing regulations.
Go to your local fishing gear store and ask about obtaining such regulations. This information is likely up to date and free. If you violate your local fishing regulations, you can get in a bit of trouble. You will not get in trouble for catching the wrong fish, you will only get in trouble if an officer catches you trying to keep the wrong fish. Trouble could range from a warning and having a warden toss any illegal fish back, to a fine of a few hundred dollars for example. If you keep some highly protected and endangered species like a Snook without a Snook stamp on your license or out of Snook season. You run the risk of having your fishing gear and your vehicle confiscated.
DONT SCARE THE FISH WITH YOUR HUGE LINE
Size matters when fishing. A common mistake among new fishermen in my area is they often use a thick line or even a thick 80 pound test metal leader while fishing in an area where such massive lines are not needed. They want a strong line, so fish don’t break it. You will want the smallest line you can use for the type and size of fish you are most likely to catch. The smaller the line the more likely they will be to bite for you. Fish can easily see big lines and are scare away by them.
THE EARLY BIRD CATCHES THE WORM
It is not always true, but it is often true that fish love an early breakfast. If you can wake up before sunrise and start fishing in the early morning, then you will most likely catch more fish than if you start late in the day. In addition, some fish like to bite just before sunset. It is best to fish around sunrise and a few hours after sunrise, and around sunset and a few hours before sunset. Unfortunately, fish are not always predictable, and they may not cooperate, they may have another idea of when they want to eat. Examples of fish that don’t follows these rules would be catfish and snapper that like to bite at night, or any school of hungry migratory fish. These fish burn lots of calories and will bite anytime.
CHECK TIDE CHARTS TIDES
Check online tide charts. If you are fishing saltwater, then fish often bite better when the tide is moving strong. When the tide stops moving, we call this slack tide and the fish will often stop biting. I can verify that this has been very true for me in areas where the current is strong. If you are on a boat far from shore the tide does not seem to have as much effect on the water’s movement, or on fish feeding behaviors.
LOOK FOR STRUCTURE
Fish love to hang out around underwater structure, smaller fish feel safe from larger predatory fish when near structure. Larger fish like to lurk around structure so they can wait in hiding for smaller fish to ambush. If you can find underwater structure such as tree trunks, plants, and rocks in freshwater, or rocks, and reefs in saltwater, then you have likely found the fishes homes. Fish these areas, but you must be extremely careful to not cast too close and get hung up in such areas.
Don’t set the hook to soon. When a fish gently nibbles, they are trying to steal your bait. Many fishes full time job is that of professional bait thief, they live by stealing bait off hooks and are quite good at it. So that little nibble does not mean you hooked a fish. When the rod tip bends down pretty hard then the fish is likely properly hooked. Wait a few seconds for the fish to get the hook in it’s mouth after the rod tip bends hard, then set the hook and reel fast, reel it in before the fish finds a way to get off the hook.
USE A BOAT
With a fishing boat you can get further out and will catch more fish. Unfortunately, I would say more than 99.9% of the people in the world cannot afford a boat. Many people use inflatable boats, these types of watercraft are much cheaper than a standard fiberglass boat. Be safe when boating.
Kayak fishing in really catching on. Kayak fishing is not for a new fisherman, first you will need to become skilled at kayaking and keeping you balance in such a small narrow watercraft. Next you will also need to become skilled at fishing. After you have mastered fishing and kayaking, then you can try kayak fishing.
PRATICE MAKES PERFECT
The more you fish the better you will become. Do not give up, expect a learning curve. Even after you have learned there will be times when you go out several different days in a row and not have much luck. Then bam! one day you will be at the right place and at the right time and you will start reeling in some nice fish one after another. At times like these you will make up for the slow times. A good fishing trip can provide you with some good tasting and healthy food and an enjoyable hobby that can last a lifetime.