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02 Dec

“Why” Some Fishermen Are Better Than Others

Most people that so much as own a fishing rod and reel are constantly thinking of how they can become better anglers. We read magazines, search online for Youtube posts, and go to fishing seminars. We even resort to places like Facebook and other social media sites to check what the other guys are doing. We’re looking for the best lure and color of fishing line combined with the best tactics and strategies. Never mind spending hundreds of dollars on electronics and other gear. We chose between popping corks and Carolina rigs, between live bait and artificial. The list goes on and on. But the problem is, and it’s a big problem. Why? Why do we use live bait over artificial and so forth and so on?

The fact is that many anglers don’t know why we fish the way we do, when we do, and with what. Many fishermen mimic what the other guy does and hope he’s right. We buy a popular lure without knowing why it’s considered the best on the market at that time. The fish are at a certain location, but why? Is it because we have caught fish there befor, or is it because our friend Bill said he filled the cooler there last week, or we saw it on a Facebook post with some guy holding up a big fish with a familiar backdrop behind him? But the question remains……Why?

Over the years, I’ve talked to some of the best inshore and offshore anglers in America. A few are even contributing writers for this magazine, and you can bet every one of them knows the “why”. Why are the fish likely to be in a specific place and time? It is water temperature, change of tides, or any number of reasons. The important thing is they know the “why” and form their strategy and tactics based on that. It’s a habit that many successful fishermen practice every day. They understand how fish react and how they feed. They have learned why they migrate to specific areas at certain times of the year. They understand things like why salinity and the moon’s position change the way they fish. They know why noise impacts some fish more than others and how to respond to it. They understand about the color of lures in certain conditions.

The fact is, there’s a lot more to fishing than just casting a cool-looking lure and hoping a fish will bite. Skilled anglers call that a fish suicide. The same is true for seeing a couple of boats in a creek and thinking the fish have to be biting if those guys are there. It gets even worse when you see on Facebook the guy holding up a big Redfish and telling where he caught it yesterday. The only problem is, he’s wearing a t-shirt and shorts when the high was only 42 degrees yesterday, which questions his “True Story”.

It’s smart to know the “why” in many parts of saltwater fishing. It will make your fishing more successful and far more enjoyable. It takes a combination of research and learning from those that have the right answers. I’ve done the research and am fortunate to have many friends that have the knowledge and are willing to share it with me. Most of today’s fishing guides have that knowledge and are glad to share it as well. Be patient. You won’t learn in a single day or even a year. It’s lessons you will use for the rest of your life and great information to pass along to the next generation.

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