How To

Bait struggling against a float rings the dinner bell for dolphin. The float itself may be an appetizer of sorts.

Fishing a Float Offshore

I’m convinced that pegging a foam cork about four feet above a live bait is one of the best tactics for mixed-bag drift-fishing on the summer ocean.

popper

How to Cast a Popper Fly Better

Heart-stopping topwater strikes don’t have to be followed by casting fatigue or an aching elbow or wrist. Fly casting, if your mechanics are poor, can cause physical pain. Throw a big ol’ popper into the mix and it can get worse. But that is avoidable—all it takes is some adjustments in both the construction of a popper and in the way you cast it.

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Flip a Worm for Bass

Flipping the reeds is classic Florida bass fishing. It works basically year-round on our shallow, bowl lakes where bulrush, cattail and Kissimmee grass comprise the dominant bass habitat.

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How to Find Lobster Lairs

Over the years we accumulate hundreds of fishing and diving spots and one of the interesting things I’ve found is there are three types of spots: Fishing, lobstering, and those where you can do both.

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Fly Fishing for Bonito

False albie. Bonito. Football. Hardhead. Bomber. These are only a few of the nicknames for the little tunny. All around the Florida coastline, from the northern Gulf of Mexico to the Florida-Georgia line, this small member of the tuna family can be caught in good numbers on fly tackle.

YoZuriWahoo

Trolling Hard Plastics for Pelagics

During this FS Seminar, Rick Ryals ventures 60 miles offshore of Jacksonville Beach in search of fast-moving pelagics. Bruiser blackfin tuna, wahoo, and dolphin gobbled hard-plastic lipped diving plugs, in favor of natural presentations.

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Finding the Secret Creeks

I remember vividly the day I discovered the pleasure of fishing water with current. One day, on a whim, I took my boys—they were very young then—to the Santa Fe River north of Gainesville. We found gin-clear springs spaced perfectly for swim breaks. Eel grass waved in the current. Silver mullet darted, while golden shiners and snails slowly foraged on the algae growing on the blades of grass.

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Check Your Permits

Impending collapse of ocean fisheries? Not happening here in the United States, and definitely not here in Florida. If anything, recreational anglers are likely feeling over-regulated at this point.

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Backwards Texas Rig

Hidden in the name is the essence of the concept—a backward Texas rig. Tekisasu—Texas, in Japanese—is phonetically reversed to form sasuteki, just as the weight is placed below the lure to turn the Texas rig itself upside down.

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Fly Line Management

Line management is the single biggest issue for fly fishermen. A wet beach towel placed over offending projections might solve your problems. Sometimes duct tape will do it. When that isn’t enough, you may need a line management tool.

flounder

Rigs for Catching Flounder

Flounder—the southern and Gulf varieties— are the ultimate bottom-dwellers, shuffling into sand or mud to lie in ambush. Flatties, or “doormats” when they get big, like their meals low and tight, so you’ll do best to keep a tempting bait in their zone.

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Tandem Fly Rigs

I have long used tandem rigs, both in fresh and salt water. If you’ve ever fished topwater poppers and bugs and dealt with half-hearted strikes, it may have been during cold weather or when the surface was flat-calm under a high sun. That’s when a dropper fly can seal the deal for you.

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Getting the Most from Power Anchors

It was easy to see the advantage of the device immediately, but I’d guess even Oliverio at that time had no idea just how successful the product would become. Not only are power anchors now standard equipment on all well-equipped flats boats, but most tournament bass boats sport a pair of them on the transom.

shrimp

Fishing Shrimp Offshore

Live shrimp is one of the most familiar baits for inshore fishing. But shrimp have a lot of utility in the offshore waters, too.

frog

Frog Modifications

A big, protein-rich mouthful — that’s what frogs mean to bass. Anglers mimick this top-tier forage with topwater frogs that tempt fish hiding under mats or lurking in open water. Here’s a rundown of tips for maximizing your frog success.

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Beach Shark Break-Away Weight

A modification to a popular block-weight system has helped us catch more fish without leaving unnatural gear in the water.

Snook like this one are worth missing some sleep.

Docklight Fly Fishing

For snook, trout and other inshore predators, docklights provide easy pickings at an all-night buffet of crustaceans and minnows flowing through with the tide.

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FS Seminar: Dive into Spearfishing

You stopped being a snorkeler the second you left the surface and entered a new realm and a sport that will challenge and reward you and combine three of your favorite things: hunting, fishing and diving. As with any other sport on the water, there is a lot to learn and safety is the number one priority with anyone wanting to go past the snorkeling phase.

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The Grass Anchor

Spoil the reed and spare the fish. Let’s face it. Dropping even the smallest anchor in a tidal creek or wilderness canal can turn off the fish. Whether it’s the splash, or simply because fish sense your presence, they can be frightened by anchors, particularly in tight quarters.

single hooks

Replacing Trebles with Single Hooks

New inline-eye single hooks are great for retrofitting plugs and other multi-hook lures.