I just started shark fishing this past season. Anyone have any tips? This year we only had 1 small mako @ Yankee wreck. Any tips or secrets out there? What wrecks seem more productive?(Fish out of FI Inlet). How many chum buckets in the water? etc...
We fish out of Mystic, CT. Had a couple of very active days (5+ blue dogs) fishing the SW corner of The Dump. We even had a marlin follow our slick to the boat (tracked a diving plug thrown on spinning gear 4 or 5 times). Unfortunately, we didn't hit any makos.
Not sure if this will help you , but it seemed to help us this past year. Three trips produced
sharks on all three. The first we had two blues at ten feet and one smaller when two other boats in sight caught zero. the second two trips each produced a mako 125-150 #'s and at least one more mako in the slick along with a couple of blues each time. Instead of store bought chum we used ground bluefish carcasses. This seemed to make a remarkable slick , far better than ground bunker , which I have used in the past. We used both fresh bluefish and frozen macks for bait. Anyone else have this experiance??? outlaw
we used a ground mixture of mackeral, herring, and blue fish blended with bunker oil. The mixture was minced to fairly small particles (don't want to over-feed the slick with lots of big chunks). We carried two solidly frozen five gallon buckets of the stuff on board with a 50 quart cooler filled with thawed version of the above. The slick was jump started for a half a mile by inserting the raw water wash down in the cooler and allowing it to overflow as we idled ahead (the boat we use has a swim platform which allows to avoid a messy/oily ****pit). Once in position, engines were shut off and one of the frozen buckets would be placed over the side inside a plastic milk crate with a buoy attached and cleated off. The raw water washdown would be slowed to a fast trickle. We'd feed the slick as needed. We'd deploy four rods, each baited with a split-tailed mackeral in the following approx. positions: 200'@ 75', 100'@50', 75'@ 30', 50'@15'
WE HAVE FOUND THE BEST WAY TO CATCH PELAGIC SHARKS,IS TO BE TUNAFISNG
AND HAVE THEM DESTROY YOUR FLOROCARBON AND 4.00 HOOK! HA HA
I USE A 5 GALLON BUCKET OF SHARK CHUM CLEATED OFF THE STERN OF MY BOAT AND RIP SLITS IN IT AND LET THE TIDE WASH THE CHUNKS IN TO THE SLICK
I USUSALLY DONT RUN TO GET OUT IF IM JUST FISHIN FOR SHARKS,THEY SEEM TO COME UP IN THE HEAT OF THE DAY.I FISH DEAD FROZEN MACKS OR HERRING
OR WAHTEVER I CAN JIG.I DONT FISH THEM LIVE CAUSE MOST OF TIME THEY CANT CATCH A SWIMMER.I FISH SHALLOW WITH WIRE AND CHEAP HOOKS AND USE A BALLOON FOR A FLOAT.THIS METHOD BRINGS A FAIR NUMBER OF BLUEDOGS AND PORBEAGLES.IF IM AIMING FOR THRESHERS OR MAKOS IF FISH DEEPER WITH SAME TECHNIQUES. IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO CHAT SOMETIME GIVE ME A CALL
Thanks for the replies, does anyone go with 2 chum buckets at a time? Or is that a waste? How bout grinding your own chum (for the guys who said they did). I dont have a grinder myself, should I invest in a cheap blender, will that do the trick, or are there other ways? I've learned a lot already, thanks again fellas.
Because we're also feeding the slick with the thawed chum from the cooler, we only put out one bucket at a time. On those really warm days, the frozen stuff will thaw quickly. The second bucket we keep on board is for back up purposes only.
Luckily, one of our crew has an industrial electric food grinder that makes short order of fish. (the fish are ground before they are frozen and the liquid that is produced gets added to the mix). A blender? I'm not certain that would work. An old sausage grinder will work if you want a work out. Just cut the bait fish into small chunks and mill away (a real messy, smelly and tiring way to do it). There are chum grinders that you can order through some of the offshore tackle catalogs. Check out Offshore Angler, Finest Kind, Murray Bros. They might have them
Grinding your own chum is not an east proposition. I am lucky to have on old commercial grinder that weighs approx 300 pounds with a 4" throat on it. Smaller units including blenders will only grind the meat portion. Mine grinds skin scales bone and everything. Makes it up nice. Good luck if you make a go of it......outlaw
find a bait store that has decent looking frozen chum all the time.I stick a frozen tin in the water,when its down to a softball size ball I take that ball put it in another pail on the boat.Make sure you have another frozen tin in the water.In that bucket in the boat I add a little saltwater,small chunks of mackeral,bluefish,bunker,whatever I have and add some bunker oil.Mix it up and dish it out slowly,you don't want to over feed them,just bring them closer.Sometimes if you over feed them they won't come closer to the boat,they'll just hang back and eat what coming there way.After 1/2 hour of dishing it out,stop for about 15 minutes,this might force them to get closer to look for the sourse.It works for us and is much easier than grinding your own.
Remember the Saladmaster??Has a crank handle. All stainless steel? It came out long before the food processor. I send my leftover frozen mackeral through this thing...frozen...works great! It shreads this frozen junk to a "Shredded form". Add fish oils from your local fish co-op...Re-freeze in zip lock...PRESTO!! This springs's CHUM!!!
My 2 cents,
After over 20 years of shaking I can tell you the following; I always sail with 3 five galon buckets of bunker chum, fresh bluefish, flat of mac's and a flat of bunker. Bunker is a great shark bait few people still use. If the water temp is 65 a 5 galon bucket of chum may last 2 - 2 1/2 hours maybe 3. One bucket at a time. BOTTOM, BOTTOM and BOTTOM. You have to have good bottom. If your in 120ft of water a 3 ft drop isn't much but, 10ft is substantial. The only time I will drift without exellent bottom is when schools of blues are in an area with other prevailing conditions like tempature breakes and a good report in the last 2 or 3 days. In 2000 almost 90% of the sharks we hooked were over good bottom like the Glory Hole or the Lilian. We did score well in and around the rock piles on a few occasions, but where we had drops of 20 - 30 ft coupled with schools of blues we pounded them. Mako are a highly migratory shark and follow bait and are usually not far away when you find bait. In 99 we boated 2 Mako in the 200# range on one trip. We threw fresh fillets at one of the sharks for an hour befor we decieded to change baits. Squid did the trick. Fish for the Makos in late June and July when the females are migrating. Sometimes earlier, depends and temps and bait. Try to release the females if you can resist. We need them. Good luck and safe sailin. Pete Barret wrote a book that hits all the basics and actually has some real good tackle tips. You should be abel to find this book in the "other" magazine out there
I trick I've been using lately is to hang carcasses (bluefish OK, fresh false albies, skippies, bonito even better) over the side. Simply tie to a piece of mono and let hang off the boat and keep your camera ready ! Besides adding another smell (other than the ground bunker) it provides a strong visual effect, as the boat rocks the carcass dances around, throwing lots of light. Had a 150 mako come right to the boat and grab a false albacore carcass, it really turned him on. We had to pull the carcass away from him. Fortunately, he ate the middle line (baited with false albacore fillet)as he departed.
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