Today i’ll show how to rig & cast LIVE reef fish to hopefully catch hungry predators. Days earlier in the same spot an entourage of freshly pupped Hammerhead Sharks were dominating the area. The normal residents like Trevally & Bonefish were probably chased out by these predators. I was hoping the freshly birthed pups would be gone & they were, but it seems today’s targeted normal inhabitants failed to return.
My fishing buddy Wayne Choy will demonstrate how to catch live reef fish to be used as live bait for hopefully larger predatory species since using cut bait wasn’t producing any hits today. Unfortunately it did produce 2 unwanted bait stealers but the process used for today is sound.
The variations on this theme of dead sticking live bait is using a heavy weighted cord instead of all light monofilament line. Why?
1) Easier for the angler to see the line’s placement considering the glaring sun & the resulting glare reflecting off the water.
2) An all light line has a tendency to be blown in different directions from the slightest wind gust. A nylon cord eliminates that nuisance & steadies the bait presentation to the fish.
3) The light mono leader (2-4lb test) at the end of the cord will do the job nicely. The appearance of the visible cord won’t distract the fish. a 2ft leader is sufficient though today a 1ft leader sufficed. You’ll need to “bite” or use a pliers to pinch on a lead shot on that line. A simple small J-shaped hook works well, i like the Limerick hook. Small baits work well. If you have no bait use what’s around you from bits of starfish to sea urchin roe. My favorite is picking up Nerite seashells that are commonly found on the high tide mark & crush the shells using rocks. The meat is a delicacy for reef fish. Use what’s available. Sand Turtles (Sand Fleas, Mole Crabs, etc) works as well.
The 2 Burrfish i caught today are part of the Porcupine Fish family. Not edible or desirable so i threw them back. Some anglers will leave them on the shore to die because they’re regarded as “rubbish fish” but please release them or any sea life back into the water.