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Old 01-10-2012, 07:18   #1
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Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

I always count on sound and to the point advice from CF. So heere goes - I am not a fisherman. Generally threw out any fishing gear on a boat I've owned. We are moving back aboard this month. With two boys 12 and 10, one of the things I want to focus on is exploring and fishing (primarily from our rigid inflatible dinghy).

We will be somewhere along the East coast of Florida (from St Augustine to Stuart) and will be fishing in the estuaries.

I don't even know where to start - what we might fish for or the gear we would need. Don't have the funds for anything extra or expensive. What is the typical bait/lure for fishing in this type of setting?

Some friendly beginner's advice? I'll start:

1. sunscreen
2....
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Old 01-10-2012, 07:29   #2
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

1. get a Florida fishing license.
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Old 01-10-2012, 07:31   #3
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

yup - will do!
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Old 01-10-2012, 08:55   #4
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

sand fleas for bait ...dig um up at the point where the waves start going back out..Shrimp work great also...you can get a fly tie vise for a few dollars and collect feathers,bits of plastic,pipe cleaners,etc and tie your own lures ,jigs and flys for very little money...They can also be sold to make a little extra income...good luck,DVC
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Old 01-10-2012, 09:10   #5
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

For the ICW a 6 to 7 foot light to med action pole with spinning reel, plenty of cheap combo kits for 40 to 80 bucks. Shrimp is widely used as bait either bottom fished or under a bobber, but you will catch all the "garbage" fish too. "Cote Jig" which is a weighted head with a hook and a plastic grub body works well for snook, spotted sea trout and red-fish (mostly one to two pounds). red head-red body and yellow head-green body are my preferences. Wading works best, fish near shore ie: grass beds, just outside mangroves, shallow flats. the occasional Manatee may come by to check you out and surface a few feet in front of you, will scare the crap outta you but are harmless. If you want those 4 or 5 foot Snook, that's a whole different approach. Lots of bass in fresh (black) water too. Use same pole with worms or buzzbaits for good results (don't get in fresh water, gators and water moccasins) ... most of all Have Fun..
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Old 01-10-2012, 14:20   #6
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

Just watched a youtube video on how to catch sand fleas - looks like fun! I'll bet they'd add some flavor to gumbo too!
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Old 06-10-2012, 07:28   #7
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

A cast net is allot of fun and a good way to catch bait free!!! start with the smaller diameter nets - easier to through - at night in shallow water with some bright lights have produced best results for me
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Old 06-10-2012, 08:51   #8
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

I am gathering the same type of info for a trip down the ICW and Bahamas next week. I have got great info from searching on you tube. Just about anything you need is there
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Old 06-10-2012, 13:28   #9
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vasco View Post
1. get a Florida fishing license.
1. I'm not sure about age limits but look into this. Perhaps your boys don't need one. Let them do the fishing. I believe no license is required for cane pole fishing.

2. Local advice is invaluable. Approach an old guy, the older the better, and have him mentor the boys. He may not be willing to share his hotspots with you but kids are different.
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Old 06-10-2012, 14:18   #10
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

And try not to keep more than you can clean and eat. As far as living aboard is concerned.
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Old 06-10-2012, 19:21   #11
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Re: Florida Fishing Tips - for newbies

Lots of fishing regulations, and enforcement resources, in Florida so be sure and get up-to-date info. Some of the fines can be ugly.

When I lived in Florida this was one reason that the lowly "Blue Stripped Grunt" became one of my favorite fish. No season. No limit. No worries. Easy and fun to catch on light tackle and not bad eating either.

Look up Vic Dunaway's "Sport Fish of Florida". Lots of practical advise by a Florida fishing legend.

As others have said, there is no substitute for local knowledge. Sure is easier to catch fish when you know where they are and what they like to eat. I used to anchor off a new area in Florida and then book a local fishing guide to pick us up at the boat. We would book a day or half-day trip, get in some good fishing, and learn a few local fishing spots in the process for next time.

If you get more serious about cruising and fishing then the ultimate reference book is: The Cruiser's Handbook of Fishing: Scott Bannerot,Wendy Bannerot: 9780071427883: Amazon.com: Books.

While lots of fancy fishing gear is fun, you don't really need it if you want to catch fish. A good cast net for live bait and a basic hand-line (Cuban Rig in FL) in the right hands will consistent put more fish on the table.
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