How To

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DIY Kayak

Build a wooden boat for fishing. Catching a fish on a homemade lure or rod is a real thrill. How about catching a fish from a boat you’ve built for yourself?

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Fiddler Crabs for Bait

Remember chasing fiddler crabs when you were a kid? Fiddlers are probably my all-around best bait, especially if kids are along. Catching the crabs can involve action, yelps of joy, lots of bending over, and a great lesson in biology. They’re also an irresistible bait for hungry fish.

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Renting a Private Boat

Buy a boat. Join a boat club. Pay a charter company. Or, why not rent a boat from a private owner?

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Tips for Towing Big Boats

Tips for hauling a maxed-out fishing machine safely on the highway. A center console boat over 32 feet used to be an oddity, but now you see them at the boat ramp more and more. The biggest concerns about trailering an oversized boat are dealing with state requirements and having the right size tow vehicle.

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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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After the Cast

Basic tips on how to move the food. What’s the ideal stripping cadence? Mostly, it depends on the species you’re seeking and the fly pattern you’re using. First, the basics: Learn to use both your stripping hand and rod hand correctly.

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Keeping Your Dock Lines Shipshape

Most anglers are fairly casual about their seamanship, and that’s understandable. But that shouldn’t stop you from keeping your dock lines shipshape.

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Blind Casting with a Fly Rod

If conditions aren’t suitable for sight-fishing, you can improve your odds of catching fish by limiting the search area and, like a good chess player, thinking a few moves ahead.

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Swamp Bass

The next morning in Jeff’s truck, he explained what lay ahead of us. Years ago, he discovered a trail into a hidden lake, a long way back through a swamp. He’d even hauled an aluminum boat out there. I asked him how many buddies used his boat. He told me he’d never seen another soul out there. I knew right then that this was going to be very special.

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Hinge and Hide It

Keeping your rig at home in the garage has multiple advantages. First, it is out of thieves’ sights. Second, indoor protection against UV light, heat and outdoors elements keeps your boat new-looking. And lastly, your boat will always be prepared because you can leave tackle and electronics in place.

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FS Seminar – Dive Safety

Florida Sportsman Editor David Conway meets up with diver/spearfisherman Rob Murphy and talks about safety techniques that should always be exercised while diving.

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.

Keeping low, author delivers a fly to a bullseye snakehead.

Aim for a Bullseye

As a Florida invasive, bullseye snakeheads began in Tamarac, and have spread throughout most of the neighborhoods above Ft. Lauderdale and below Palm Beach. Any body of water in these areas on any given day can hold snakeheads.

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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.

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Take Your Shiner For a Stroll

It’s not the most glamorous bass tactic, and you’re not likely to see it on the cable TV fishing shows. But there’s a reason why slow-trolling live shiners is the bread and butter technique for bass guides from Lake Okeechobee to Talquin–it works.

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Catching Mullet on Fly

Solving the jumping enigma with flies. When you think about it, the “game” in gamefish says a lot about a fish. It helps explain why one man’s grunting and sweating aboard a drifting sportfisherman seems so far removed from another’s grilled swordfish in a restaurant.

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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.

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Using the Rest of the Clock

A good fly fisherman understands that time, effort and practice cultivate technique and successful execution. Among those techniques is the dreaded “wrong side” cast. Adding this to your arsenal will greatly improve the outcome of each day on the water.

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Bridge Fishing Basics

Coastal bridges are excellent places to fish for redfish, sheepshead, grouper and many other species, but there are some secrets to getting the most out of the opportunities.

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Skipcasting from Kayaks

Fishing mangroves and docks requires being able to cast your presentation underneath overhanging structure using a method called the skipcast.