Good action with a variety of species is still my goal as of late although during our warmer spells black tips sharks are being caught off the beaches.
Pompano, trout, snapper, sheepshead, snapper and some odd species are being caught such as puffer fish, batfish and the occasional whiting and squirrel fish. Live shrimp has been working best either on a jig or on a jig beneath a float.
Jigging had also been productive including pink tube jigs and 3/8 oz. chartreuse or yellow jigs tipped with shrimp.
Both incoming and outgoing tides have been good especially at mid tide.
The black tip sharks have been on some of the near shore wrecks. The sharks are in the 50-60 lb. range and are one of my favorite sharks to catch. They’re feisty and just don’t want to give up. Cut bait is the norm using catfish or lady fish cut in half.
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Black tip Shark Fishing Techniques
Blacktip sharks are a common species in the waters of Southwest Florida, especially during their migration season from late winter to early spring. Anglers targeting blacktip sharks in this region typically use a variety of techniques to increase their chances of success. Here are some popular techniques for catching blacktip sharks in Southwest Florida:
- Chumming: Chumming is a common technique used to attract sharks closer to the fishing area. This involves throwing small pieces of bait, such as fish or fish parts, into the water to create a scent trail. Blacktip sharks have a keen sense of smell and will be drawn to the area by the scent of the chum.
- Bottom Fishing: Blacktip sharks often feed near the bottom, so bottom fishing with heavy tackle is an effective method for targeting them. Anglers use large baitfish, such as mullet, ladyfish, or bonito, rigged on heavy-duty circle hooks and dropped to the bottom.
- Trolling: Trolling with large, flashy lures or rigged baits can be effective for catching blacktip sharks. Anglers typically use heavy trolling rods and reels with wire leaders to prevent the shark from biting through the line.
- Live Bait Fishing: Using live baitfish, such as mullet or pinfish, can be highly effective for catching blacktip sharks. Anglers can either free-line live bait or use a balloon or float rig to keep the baitfish suspended in the water column.
- Drift Fishing: Drift fishing involves allowing the boat to drift naturally with the current while presenting baits to actively feeding sharks. This technique can be effective for covering a large area and locating feeding blacktip sharks.
- Shark Rigs: Specialized shark rigs, consisting of heavy monofilament or wire leaders, large circle hooks, and strong swivels, are commonly used when targeting blacktip sharks. These rigs are designed to withstand the powerful jaws and teeth of the sharks.
- Fight Techniques: Once hooked, blacktip sharks are known for their acrobatic jumps and powerful runs. Anglers should be prepared for a strong fight and use proper techniques to tire out the shark before attempting to bring it aboard.
- Release Techniques: Catch-and-release is encouraged for blacktip sharks to help conserve the population. Anglers should handle the shark carefully, avoiding damage to its skin and fins, and release it as quickly as possible using a dehooking tool or a pair of long-handled pliers.
It’s important for anglers targeting blacktip sharks to familiarize themselves with local regulations regarding shark fishing and to handle these animals with care to ensure their survival upon release. Additionally, always prioritize safety when fishing for sharks by using appropriate gear and techniques.