Monday, August 26, 2013

SoCal Jetty Fishing Basics

I just finished up writing a guest post for my bud Joe Sarmiento aka Socal Salty. He runs a great site called  Socal Salty that's filled with great info such as deep sea fishing, recipes, products reviews and fishing reports. If you want some information on offshore angling or you just want to know what they've been catching stop by his site. You won't be disappointed. 

Here is the link to my guest post on Southern California Jetty Fishing Basics

You can also follow Joe Sarmiento (SocalSalty) on social media

Twitter: @Socalsalty
Instagram: @Socalsalty

Friday, June 7, 2013

How To Pump For Ghost Shrimp

If you didn't know, ghost shrimp is one of the most effective live baits for a wide variety of species in Southern California. Buying live ghost shrimp at local tackle stores isn't an option to me because they are expensive in my opinion. Therefore, pumping for your own ghost shrimp is the way to go. In this blog post I will cover everything you need to know about pumping for ghost shrimp.

First off, you'll need to get a ghost shrimp pump. You can either build your own pump, or buy one at your local tackle shop. Tackle shops usually charge around thirty dollars and is well worth it if you like fishing.

Finding The Ghost Shrimp

My go to pumping location (channel)
A small group of burrows
There are areas all over Southern California that hold ghost shrimp. Most of the time, ghost shrimp can be found in muddy areas located in bays and channels that lead into harbors. At negative or low tide, you want to walk the shoreline and look for those muddy areas. Once you've located possible ghost shrimp locations, you'll want to take a closer look and try to identify ghost shrimp burrows. Ghost shrimp burrows are small holes in the mud that look very similar to ant holes. If you see thousands of burrows along the shore line you will know you're in the right spot. 

Four Easy Steps

  1. Place the bottom of the pump directly over the burrow
  2. Push down on the pump. Approximately 1" down
  3. Quickly pull up on the handle while pushing down on the pump
  4. Lift the pump out of the sand and push down on the handle, releasing sand and hopefully ghost shrimp
Helpful Hints

  • I like to pump near areas with vegetation (small patches of eel grass) I find these areas to be most productive.
  • Pump burrows that are moist or slightly covered with water. You don't want to pump out a dry clump of sand
  • Pumping at negative tide is ideal, but low tide is fine too
  • If you hear a slurp from the pump, it's a good pump 
  • You must have a fishing license to pump for ghost shrimp
  • The limit is 50 ghost shrimp per fishing license 

A quick clip of pumping ghost shrimp

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Plastic Bait Storage: Plano Liqua-Bait Locker Bottle

If you're anything like me, you've probably had one of those times when you fail to close your Berkley Gulp packages all the way, or you leave it out in the sun too long resulting in rock hard, shriveled up baits. These "failure to close" instances can also create a mess and leave unwanted odors in tackle storage devices. Thankfully, Plano has developed the Liqua-Bait Locker Bottle that solves these problems, and will have you more organized and mess free.
Plano Liqua-Bait Locker with a bottle of Gulp! Recharge
Design - The Plano Liqua-Bait Locker has a small, slim and sleek design.  It's big enough to hold a good amount of soft plastics, but small enough to put in small compartments. You can throw it in your tackle bags or boat compartments and forget about it. The bait locker is made of a hard durable plastic that can stand up to a beating. I've dropped it on concrete and even stepped on it without any issues. The main feature of this product is the o-ring inside the lid that makes the Liqua-Bait locker air tight and leak proof, ensuring your plastic baits remain fresh. The lid has ridges on it which make it easier for you to open and close with wet or slippery hands.

Applying Gulp Recharge
Add scent - The great think about the Liqua-Bait locker is that you can add scents to your plastics without having to worry about them drying up. It allows the baits to absorb and hold scents for a longer period of time. I strongly recommend buying a small bottle, or two, of Berkley Gulp recharge. Simply throw in your plastics and apply the Gulp recharge. If your'e going to fully stock the bait locker I would recommend filling it half way with scent to ensure there's enough juice to go around. The Gulp recharge does great with Gulp products. However, from my experiences, some soft plastics do not absorb the Gulp scent very well. Depending on the plastic, they will either shrink or become disfigured so keep an eye out. You can also use any scent of your choice. It doesn't necessarily have to be in liquid form. If you like to use a paste like scent, apply it to the plastics before putting it in the bait locker. Think of it as marinating meat before a bbq. The longer it marinates, the better.

Finished product

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Study Your Target Species

Whether your targeting saltwater or freshwater species, it's always helpful to have some knowledge of what your catching. Studying your target species is a simple, but effective solution to becoming better angler. In order to be a complete angler, it is important to not only know how to catch fish, but to know what they're about. In my opinion, fish knowledge goes much further than knowing what baits work the best. Other areas to consider when studying your target species are: diet, habitat, migration, spawning season, and of course regulations regarding that particular species.

There are many resources that are available for this type of information, but the two websites that have been most helpful to me are the California Department of Fish and Wildlife site and FishBase.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (formerly Department of Fish and Game) website has a lot of information for California native species, both fresh and saltwater. The site also gives you all the information you need regarding rules and regulations for specific species. You can either browse through the site or search directly on the top right corner.

Fish Base has some good, to the point, information for a wide variety of species. However, from my experiences Fish Base loads very slow so you'll have to be patient.

New 2013 Saltwater Bass Regulations 

Effective March 1, 2013, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife has changed saltwater bass regulations for conservation reasons. The following species are under these new regulations: Spotted Bay Bass, Calico Bass, and Barred Sand Bass. The new regulations are the following:

  •  14 inch minimum length with a legal filet length of 7 1/2 inches on all saltwater bass species (previously 12 inch minimum length)
  • 5 fish limit in any combination (previously 10 fish limit)

These new regulations are good for conservation so future generations will be able to enjoy these amazing species. However, they will have an effect on sport-fishing charters and tournament series. For example, these regulations are going to make it harder for sport-fishing charters to reach their bag limit. For tournament anglers the regulations make it harder to pull in legal sized bass to weigh in. From my standpoint, I'm okay with these new regulations because it will be conserving our fishery and making saltwater bass fishing that much more challenging.

For a full article on this topic CLICK HERE