Tarpon is a type of fish that come to mind when you think of fishing in Florida. It is a sports fish that has the ability to jump several feet out of the water. Tarpon is also referred to as Sabalo, Silver Sides, or Silver King. The fish is not eaten because its flesh has tiny bones that are hard to remove.
Some of the areas that get high populations of tarpon include Matlacha, Sanibel Island, Caloosahatchee River, and Estero Bay. The best time for fishing tarpon is between April and August. The hill tide rush offers the best opportunity during the day for anglers to hook the fish.
There are several techniques for fishing tarpon. Each has its advantages and quirks. The gear required for tarpon fishing in the state is limited to hook and line. You can only keep the fish if you have a license that costs $50 each year.
Natural bait works well during ebb tide. You should set yourself up so that the bait moves towards the fish. You should use sharp hooks when fishing for tarpon because of their bony and hard mouths. You will catch one in about five takes on average because it is hard to hook them.
There are two ways of using shrimp as live bait. You can free line it by threading or hook the head of the shrimp under the horn.
You ought to raise the rod so that the shrimp skim on the water surface when casting. This will attract the tarpon towards the shrimp since they will take notice. You can alternatively use crabs by removing the claws and hooking them. Tarpon feeds on crabs, and that is why they act as very good bait.
The best types of fish are mullet, pinfish, and mullet. You should ensure that the fish stays alive for as long as possible by hooking it in front of the dorsal fin.
The artificial lures work well when you are fishing on the flats. Some of the artificial lures that are effective include Rapa Magnum, Gator spoons, and Mirrolure 65M. Always make sure that the lure sinks in and pull the rod tip slowly when you make a catch. Plastic lures have also proven to be very effective when catching tarpon.
The color of the fly should correspond to the size of the tarpon that you want to get. Brighter colors are good for sandy bottoms. Dark colors such as blue are good when the bottom is covered with dark grass.
Hooking a Tarpon
Additional sharpening is needed to set up the hook because the mouths of the fish are very hard. Do not set the hook first when you get a bite. Just take in the slack. One of the biggest mistakes that inexperienced anglers make is setting the hook before making sure that the tarpon has bitten the bait. You should wait to feel the weight so that you can tell if it is securely inside the mouth of the tarpon.
Landing the Tarpon
The goal to land the fish is to wait until it is exhausted when the tarpon is securely hooked. It is advisable to lower the tip of the rod just as the fish is about to jump. You will need to support the rod by holding it tightly to counter the resistance of the fish. The fish will leap and jump for a long time until it rolls on its side. Tarpons can usually weigh around 200 pounds. The fish can take experienced fishermen close to half an hour to trap it.