Larger Sharks offshore

As promised in that previous report we will touch on the sharks available on fishing charters in Fort Lauderdale as it is high season for many species right now and they are little more than a mile off the beach here and almost all are targeted and caught within two miles of shore. Many are large fish and are not on every anglers radar but to many they are exciting, and as we mentioned, many are big.

This is strictly a catch and then a release after the photograph for almost all species of sharks we catch. Please note the photo of the large circle style hook we use that is designed to hook these sharks in the corner of the mouth, not in the gut or elsewhere, which is obviously good news for a shark’s well being after the fight.

As in all types of fishing wherever you choose to enjoy a day and wet a line whether it be a shark or trout there is always a chance of an empty day. But now is the time for them offshore (sharks, no trout) here and chances are good for success. Now is the time when they regularly barge into a live bait kite spread set for Sailfish and other species set on light leaders and try to take a bait on a leader that quite possibly will fail before the fight is over. Jack up the leader size and watch many of those other species we encounter here spit the bait due to that heavier leader, so we try to bait and switch the sharks off the live bait on that light leader and on to something heavier. Sometimes that situation ends with us getting an appropriate heavy leader in front of the shark and it’s fish on. Sometimes in results in the shark getting hold of one of those lighter leader live baits. And sometimes, but not all that frequently, it results in the shark simply loosing steam and interest and swimming off befuddled by the escape of that light leader live bait. They get focused at times so completely on the initial bait they zone in on. We often have a fresh “stink bait” out there but if a shark comes in hot with only the one live bait inside his blinders and stays up current of that stink bait and up current of anything we try to slide to him it can be aggravating watching him fade away up current. If he fades down current chances are he’ll pick up the scent of that stink bait(s).

We do often “pitch” a bait to a surface swimming shark that we encounter while targeting other species, and most of those are Hammerheads, and it is fairly east to get him to commit. Most often they are swimming into the current and we get a bit in front of him and set a stink bait back there where he can smell it and here he comes.

When sharks are the focus a typical bait spread is a bait at the surface accompanied by chum, a mid depth bait, and then another bait fished only high enough off the bottom to (hopefully) prevent it from getting snagged by a rock and not a shark. Heavy leaders, large fresh baits and buckle up. Chances are good that one will take a bait and bend that rod double, it’s high season. We’ll publish another report soon regarding the arrival of more Mahi-Mahi and Wahoo into our area.

Tight lines and good fishing