Freshwater Tackle Guide
Diverse fisheries and resources make Florida the fishing capital of the world. Now, imagine if you could take diverse fisheries and resources and pair it with great atmosphere and plenty of sightseeing for any tourist or any resident of Florida…Do you know what you’d get? No, maybe, yes? Well I know, you’d get South Florida. From its Everglades, sports teams and night life South Florida is more than just the mecca of fishing, it’s the perfect destination for vacationing. Now, I know this has nothing to do with freshwater tackle but just bear with me because the real article starts now.
Down in sunny South Florida urban angling is bountiful with no definitive guide on how to get started. When I say get started I mean picking up a rod and reel along with a tackle box filled with goodies (lures). Now, this blog is managed by the C4FishingTeam who have a variety of freshwater fishing videos on YouTube. You can find them easily by searching C4FishingTeam on YouTube. Ok. The good stuff now, the great thing about fishing the freshwater fishing in South Florida, Miami-Dade to be exact is that it is a small version of the Amazon River. Literally it is a small version of the Amazon River. The many canals (channels) running throughout Miami-Dade hold a plethora of fish and many of them are literally from the Amazon River. The most well-known exotic fish in Miami-Dade is the Peacock Bass. Other known exotic fish species are Oscars, Jaguar (Guapote), Mayan Cichlid and Pacu.
Let’s start off with the Peacock Bass. In the Amazon a Peacock Bass can easily grow to 20 LBs simply because of the size of the Amazon River and the amount of food it is surrounded by. In Miami-Dade a Peacock Bass can grow to 10 LBs but they are scarce. A 6LB Peacock Bass is more likely what can be caught on any day. This revelation should not discourage any seasoned angler or newbie angler. A 6LB Peacock Bass can pull twice as hard as a 6LB Largemouth Bass! Yes, Peacock Bass are that strong, what they lack in size they make up in raw strength. The recommend tackle to fish for Peacock Bass are the following: jerk bait, slash bait, crappie jigs, top water lures and live bait. Jerk bait are a great for beginner because they teach how to control the rod and make it work for you. Slash baits are just as easy to and require the same technique as jerk bait, a small simple jerking motion. Crappie jigs are also very effect and I find them most useful during spawning season (April-September). Jigging a crappie jig right in the middle of Peacock Bass fry will catch the attention of both male and female Peacock Bass parents. Top water lures I find are most effective during the morning. Simple top water can land you many Peacock Bass. And last but not least the most effective way to hook and land a Peacock Bass is with live bait. For live bait I like using Bluegills and Striped Tilapia a.k.a Peacock Bass candy! Bluegills and Striped Tilapia are easily caught on a tiny hook baited with bread, in a matter of minutes you can catch 5 – 7 Bluegills or Striped Tilapia.
Next up are the Oscars and Mayan Cichlid. The technique for catching these exotic fish are very similar a small hook baited with bread works every time or you could use a crappie jig which works fine but I recommend using a small hook baited with bread. And last the Jaguar (Guapote) and Pacu. The Jaguar can be can just like a Peacock Bass with the exception of the top water lure. Pacu are caught with corn (preferably canned corn) and berries. Pacu fishing takes time. Taking a can of berries of corn a chumming the water with is an ideal technique and don’t forget to bait a hook with corn or berry. Patience is the key to landing a Pacu, you might fish for a Pacu all and not get a nibble but don’t let that discourage you.
And the very last and most important is the rod, reel and line. A good would be a spinning rod from ugly stik, they are very reliable and inexpensive. The reel should be rated for medium action and 10LB-15LB line. A good reel would be a Daiwa BG15 and BG30 and from PENN a spinfisher 440ssg. And for line 10LB-12LB mono would be good enough.