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Florida Surf Fishing


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Brdhntr47

Saturday was a very good day. Walked on the beach at 6:45 AM and got a Bluefish on the first cast. I never moved from that spot till 9:00 AM. I landed 51 Blues without moving. No need to walk and look for fish. Average Florida Blues 3 - 5 lbs. No pics today, too busy. 
I tried to post a video that a passerby took but couldn’t make it work. Oh well, I’m old.

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I fish the beaches here in Florida every morning. I walk the beach looking for signs of feeding fish and cast artificial lures on light tackle. If I don’t see any signs of fish I blind cast. Some days

Flat water today. 1’ waves at 11 seconds. While you can see everything going on in those conditions the fish don’t usually like it. I was ready to write the day off. Wrong. Found a Bluefish blitz goin

Been a very slow week. Low tide at sunrise and a south wind.That’s about as poor as fishing conditions can get. Finally managed to get on a small school of Jacks this morning but it didn’t last long.

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Brdhntr47

Since I can’t seem to get the video to load. Someone took this one of me today right about sunrise.

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Keep this going, it is most enjoyable. Tell us too about your gear and habits of the different fish. 

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Popular surf fishing species here too, named differently around the world.In our Cape waters known as Elf, but mostly called Shad across the rest of our shoreline.Aussies call them Tailor.

The  annual sardine migration(sardine run) that occurs in our Natal waters every year brings them in huge numbers! SA angling record 10.3kg 

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Brdhntr47

No fishing today. Roxie and I left Florida 4:30 AM this morning. Presently sitting in a cheap motel in North Carolina waiting on a pizza delivery. We will be chasing Bobwhites around for the next few days. Back at the surf fishing on the weekend.

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Brdhntr47
21 hours ago, Remo said:

Keep this going, it is most enjoyable. Tell us too about your gear and habits of the different fish. 


Remember fishing is big business in Florida. Most folks fishing the surf are bait fishing. They are usually after Pompano or Whiting, occasionally Croaker.  About everything they catch is killed. I have never seen any  enforcement of catch or size limits on the beach. Everyone fishes with at least two rods. Mostly three. If the guy holds a commercial license he will be using four rods. Put ten or so bait fisherman on one beach and that’s a lot of rods out. The good point is those folks do not like to walk so they all line up right in front of the parking areas. News of someone catching fish on a certain beach spreads like wildfire. If someone is fishing alone and catches some Pompano on a certain beach the next morning there are 20+ cars parked there.

Not sure how I got off on this except that it makes my type of fishing more difficult with all those lines out.

Anyway. The spinning tackle I use. I have tried a whole bunch of 7 1/2’ and 8’ rods. My current favorite at least for the last couple years is the Star Stellar 8’ Surf Rod. This is a one piece rod and only retails for $100. I am partial to one piece rods as I believe they cast better and are less prone to breakage. Rods usually break at the ferrules. A lot of people don’t like one piece rods due to difficulty in transport. Not a problem for me as I live there.

Spinning reels are the piece of equipment most likely to fail. I use to buy the $100 variety of Spinning Reels. The manufacturer didn’t seem to matter. Get in to a bunch of 10 lb. Jacks and the reel is toast. A good Bluefish Blitz will also wreck them. I have burned the drags out on some of them in one day. My reel of choice is the Penn Slammer III 4500 for everyday fishing. Have only had one problem and that was my fault. I was trying to release a 20# Jack without a shark getting it (or me) and submerged the reel in the surf. There was more sand in the reel than I could get out. Sent it to Penn they cleaned, serviced and changed a worn line roller. NO CHARGE. Can’t get better service than that. Reel sells for about $260 at most shops.

Most everything I catch has teeth but I do not use wire leaders. I believe I get more strikes with heavy mono. Usually 50#

Enough for know.

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Brdhntr47
14 hours ago, redwing said:

Popular surf fishing species here too, named differently around the world.In our Cape waters known as Elf, but mostly called Shad across the rest of our shoreline.Aussies call them Tailor.

The  annual sardine migration(sardine run) that occurs in our Natal waters every year brings them in huge numbers! SA angling record 10.3kg 


The Bluefish is a winter run here in Florida. They are usually gone north by April but last year I was catching them at the end of May. I think they are a great sport fish but many folks do not think that way, as they are not prime eating. Down here many Blues are smoked then used to make fish dip which is very good.

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On 1/13/2021 at 12:02 PM, Brdhntr47 said:

I fish the beaches here in Florida every morning. I walk the beach looking for signs of feeding fish and cast artificial lures on light tackle. If I don’t see any signs of fish I blind cast. Some days I catch fish and others are just casting practice. Florida is the “Bait Fishing Capital of the World” so I am a bit of a novelty. This time of year I mostly catch Bluefish, Jack Crevalle and Spanish Mackeral.  As the season progresses and the water warms other species will be on the beaches. Blacktips should be around in the next couple weeks but they require a upgrade in tackle or I will just be feeding them $20 top water plugs.

 

 

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Ever try the bubble rig? Fairly inexpensive and works well on top water. 

 

Barna

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Brdhntr47
5 hours ago, barna said:

Ever try the bubble rig? Fairly inexpensive and works well on top water. 

 

Barna

 
I have tried similar popping cork and slider rigs in the “rivers” but never in the surf.. Those rigs are deadly on sea trout. However, I don’t wade in the river any longer..The Bull Sharks, Alligators and Rays finally got too much for me. Nothing like wading in the dark and having something bump into you. My aging heart won’t take that any longer.

 I fish the east coast surf and we have a lot more wave action than the west. I think that type of lure is designed for flatter water,

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19 hours ago, Brdhntr47 said:

 
I have tried similar popping cork and slider rigs in the “rivers” but never in the surf.. Those rigs are deadly on sea trout. However, I don’t wade in the river any longer..The Bull Sharks, Alligators and Rays finally got too much for me. Nothing like wading in the dark and having something bump into you. My aging heart won’t take that any longer.

 I fish the east coast surf and we have a lot more wave action than the west. I think that type of lure is designed for flatter water,

Yes I used it on the gulf side for Spanish and blues, lady fish, anything that chases 

 

Barna 

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Bloodhound

I would love to hear more about the gear, rods reels and lines and if possible maybe a pic or tow of the gear and lures...

 

I am really enjoying this!

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Brdhntr47

Back on the beach again after a few days of bird hunting. Conditions today were about as bad as they could be. Low tide, flat water and bright sun. Those conditions don’t lend themselves to catching fish but you go anyway. Spent an hour walking and blind casting. Had a couple strikes and landed one Bluefish. Didn’t see anyone else fishing. Parking areas were empty a sure sign of no fish being around.

 

 

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Brdhntr47
23 hours ago, Bloodhound said:

I would love to hear more about the gear, rods reels and lines and if possible maybe a pic or tow of the gear and lures...

 

I am really enjoying this!


Everyday rod is a Star Stellar 8’ one piece rod. When the Blacktips or later Tarpon are here I go to a heavier rod. In the spring I go to a lighter rod when the Snook, Spanish Mackeral and Ladyfish are around. When Ladyfish push bait on the beach they will take a lure worked on the surface and they jump like miniature Tarpon.

Reels. I am partial to Penn Slammer III 4500. I haven’t wrecked one of these yet. The run of the mill $100 spinning reels don’t last. If I find some 20# Jacks those reels can fail on the first fish. Ever tried to hand line a 20# Jack in when your brand new spinning reel handle won’t turn. Get a decent reel. Any brand you like that has a good drag system and NO PLASTIC GEARS.

Lures. A silver spoon will catch anything in the Florida surf. But you must vary retrieves to match what the fish want that day.

Since fishing the same lure very day can get old I threw in a pic of my tackle closet. The boxes are all full of lures.

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Brdhntr47

My favorite silver spoon is locally manufactured. I buy them by the dozen in several sizes but change all the hardware. I only keep the blank which I modify.

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Brdhntr47

You will need something like this to carry lures, leaders and hardware.

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