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Old 15-12-2008, 07:01   #1
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Fishing under Sail

My 1st mate and I are planning a trip to the Caribbean from Nova Scotia on our 27 footer. Although most of our trip will be coastal cruising and the ICW, I would like to fish for our meals when I have the chance.

Nova Scotia to Cape Cod

Is trolling for fish under sail a good idea? My concerns are catching something to big to pull up on our boat (tuna, Shark) and to big to eat all of it. I dont want to kill anything I wont eat ( Shark, Swordfish, etc).

Of course getting fish blood on my boat and maybe sails is not a pleasent thought.

Any thoughts on this subject?

Virgina to Florida

Is the water in the ICW clean enough to eat fish from it?

Looking forward to your feedback,

Todd
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Old 15-12-2008, 07:14   #2
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Fishing in the ICW might be a problem. Each state has different laws and I think all require a license. We fish in the ocean. Blood washes off easily enough. Have never caught a shark from my boat, usually the worry is that a shark will take your catch before you have it reeled in. I'm holding up a carcass in the picture, didn't realize what a good size it was until I had finished filleting it. Usually we make a chowder out of the carcass as there's lots of meat still on it but we had to give this one to the sharks as the freezer was full.

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Old 15-12-2008, 07:47   #3
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We alawys fish while underway, be it sail or motoring. As Rick said the sharks are more of a problem getting your fish rsther thsn you getting them!! THe blood is a pain but it is well worth the work to wash it down.
The water is fine in the ICW, but it is best to fish with a small rig after anchoring
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Old 15-12-2008, 07:54   #4
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In North Carolina you will need a salt water fishing license...$30 for non-residents. (Fine is 35 bucks, plus 110 for court fees if they catch you without one...)

North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission
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Old 15-12-2008, 08:05   #5
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Vasco is right about the ICW, all of the states require fishing licenses. There are a few places with health warnings about eating too much fish. The one I am most familiar with is Albemarle sound. But as you'll just be passing through, you probably won't exceed the limits. Your results will depend on what time of year you go. I fish from my boat all the time, and the best advice I can give you is to use small baits. The old fishing adage "to catch big fish, use big baits" is actually pretty good. When I'm cruising I like to catch meal size fish rather than freezer filling monsters. In the summer I troll small clark spoons on medium duty rods or handlines with a small down plane. I catch a lot of spanish mackeral and small bluefish which make great meals. If you go in the winter you'll probably not catch any until Florida in the ICW.

Off shore you can go to slightly bigger lures, but as a general rule if you keep your lures small you'll catch smaller fish. When I troll off shore I limit myself to 6 inch trolling baits. In doing so I have caught mahi and other fish up to about 25 lbs. I have trolled small clark spoons and large clark spoons at the (2 inch and 4 inch) and while I've occasionally had small fish hit the big baits, big fish don't go for the small baits.

The US has some interesting rules about keeping highly migratory species such as mackerals and tunas whole (head and tail on) until landed ashore. These rules seem to change all the time so I suggest you check the National Marine Fisheries Service wed site before you go.
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Old 15-12-2008, 08:36   #6
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I remember well the first fish my dad caught and brought on board...still alive,
Was caught on a hand line that he had been draging for about a week around the Straights of Luzon.
It was a mahimahi about 30 lbs....dad hit it with a hammer...big mistake!
Over the next 5 min. that flopping fish spewed and flopped blood and **** over the the cock pit....My mom made it clear that was the last time doing it that way.
If I remember right...a wet towel layed over the next few worked well until they suffocated.
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Old 15-12-2008, 09:54   #7
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Thanks all

Great advice and thank you all. My boat wont have refridgeration so what I ketch will be cooked that night. Small lur is the way to go I guess. I do have a question about flying fish.

I read a couple of books about people that eat them as they landed on the deck of the boat. I have never tryed flying fish and not really sure where there habitat starts. We dont have Flying Fish in Nova Scotia to my knowledge. Is the eating good and what is the best way to catch them if it is?

Or fish here in Nova Scotia is quite simple: Cod, Hadick, Halibut, Macrel, and polluck. At least these are the more popular that we fish.

Todd
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Old 15-12-2008, 10:10   #8
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Flying fish are hard to de-bone but they do taste good if cooked properly. The Bajans do a great job, if ever in Barbados go to Oistens for the Friday nigh fish fry.
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Old 15-12-2008, 10:11   #9
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Best way to catch flying fish (what worked for us) keep the gunal close to the water!
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Old 15-12-2008, 10:42   #10
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Sounds like it could be fun to catch them without a line and hook, thinking maybe I need to invest in a hand net.
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Old 15-12-2008, 10:45   #11
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Biggest shock I had sailing offshore was getting hit by a large flying fish one night. Boy did I jump! They are very tasty to eat, but I've always let someone else (restaurant) do the prep.

I always trolled with 90 lb. mono and was able to bring everything I caught onboard with a 4' gaff. The bigger fish just broke the line.
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Old 15-12-2008, 11:05   #12
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Rick that is a hell of a fish, great picture!
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Old 15-12-2008, 16:46   #13
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I have had flying squid land on deck. They are good eating.
Check out problems of ciguatera in the area you are traveling through. Small fish are less likely to have problems with toxins as there is less bioaccumulation.
For bony fish there is the coke bottle deboning technique. Get a glass coke bottle- if they still exist! and roll the bottle over the fish which stresses the flesh from the bones and -with luck and some judicious use of a sharp knife, depending on the fish, you can simply pull the whole skeleton out
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Old 15-12-2008, 17:00   #14
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Here's more info for ya: Half.com / Books / The Cruiser's Handbook of Fishing This is a really great book, and I think it warrants a place on every boats shelves!
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Old 16-12-2008, 05:21   #15
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The Cruisers guide to fishing

Looks like a good book, I will for sure pick it up and leave it on my boat.
I will get a Coke bottle as well, I wonder if a rolling pin would work?

Thanks
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