Captain’s Corner: Use a cast net with smallest mesh size for usable bait fish

Published August 21 2018
Updated August 21 2018

Using a cast net with the smallest mesh size is imperative in acquiring usable bait fish that donít gill themselves. The smaller baits are fragile and need to be dumped out of the net and into the well as quickly as possible to keep them lively. Any that hit the deck or get hung up should be considered chum. While tiny baits can provide decent action, theyíre not ideal for hunting trophy-sized fish. With summerís ongoing heat, just catching fish seems to be the main goal. Fortunately, the majority of my charters are focused on families with young children who are more about numbers of fish reeled to the boat rather than banner catches. Anchoring while deploying a frozen chum block supplemented with any designated chum baits has brought in a variety of species. In some cases, casting has barely been necessary when the fish are worked up into a feeding frenzy. Spanish mackerel, mangrove snapper, spotted sea trout, silver trout, white grunts, black sea bass, blue fish, small sharks and more have all been cooperative depending on location. Moving water has been the common denominator in every scenario. When the tide slows, so does the fishing.

Brent Gaskill runs Summer Vacation Charters and can be reached at [email protected] and (727) 510-1009.