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Discussion Starter #1
Well I don't exactly know what im doing wrong.. Hell I went out to the pass the the bait fish looked so thick like you could walk on them...

Im throwing an 8foot net, I dont know how much weight/foot it is, but it dosent feel very heavy...

I would throw the net over the top of a school and they would scramble and leave me coming up empty..

the mullet are so boat shy we coulden't get close to them in the boat and they are staying just far enough off the beach to where I can't net them wading..

my pinfish trap produced zero results in the grass beds and then it was stolen so who knows, maybe it did produce..

I find im wasting entirly to much time searching for live bait the morning of a trip, if anyone can give me suggestions I would greatly appreciate it.:banghead:banghead:banghead
 

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We have a salt water tank in the garage that I keep bait in for trips. Helps plan a head. You still have to catch the bait in the morning, but it only out of the tank.
 

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To catch those baits around the pass, you are going to need to use a sabiki rig. It's too deep for a cast net there. As for the mullet, well, you just have to be patient and really stealthy.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So thoes fish I see in the giant school near the waters surface will eat a sabiki??? And what are thoes exactly hardtails?
 

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Realtor (6/23/2008)bait boat, much faster and you usually end up with better baits. i like to spend my time fishin rather than wasting time (trying) catching bait. IMO
Yea we passed a blueish/green boat that said "LIVE BAIT" on the side, we pulled up next to him and he said he had no bait haha ;<
 

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Immyz (6/23/2008)So thoes fish I see in the giant school near the waters surface will eat a sabiki??? And what are thoes exactly hardtails?


The ones inside the pass are usually threadfins and crazy fish with hardtails mixed in. Yes, they will all eat the sabiki. The threadfins are hard to keep alive, the crazy fish are no good as bait. The hardtails are good. Outside the pass is usually where you will find the cigar minnows and more hardtails.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It sounds like im going to have to dedicate a single day to learning where to catch bait =)
 

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NO, take a light tackle spinning combo, use the smaller size sabikis. Go out side the pass and to the bouy by the mass. Cut really small pieces of squid and attach to each hook. Put a 2oz weight on the bottom and toss over schools of bait. They will hit it while reeling but let it fall kind of like an easy jigging motion. Once you feel one on start reeling SLOW so that the others in the group will get excited and bite. That will make sure you have at least 4 on. Repeat until full. It usually takes us 20-30 mins if we catch bait. I prefer the bait boat!
 

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when inshore (mostly like)we anjoy chasing bait and trying to net a few is part of the fun in my opinion. I personally don't see trying to catch your own bait as a waste of time at all.. my boy is learning how to cast his 4 footer and hes getting good at it. But I could understand if you are going 40 miles out and have your time limits. Bait boat is a good alternative, but likesome one say you can use sabiki rigs for hard tails or just about any kind of small hook with a flashy tail with a little flavor at the end. If you are around the pass go to the north side of the island on shallow water and lookaround there, in fact you can catch lots of bait at the boat ramp. here is a pic of a hard tail:

 

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The boat canals and bayous are LOADED with bait size pinfish, finger mullet, mehaden, etc. I only get down there once every year or so but I have no trouble catching as many live baits as I can use in two days in one or two casts. I do use a bigger net [ten footer] but as in real estate it's location, location, location. The boat canals way in the back of Destin harbor are so full of bait that I could go into the bait business while down there!!!!!!! Look for dark water about 3-5' deep and flashes way down deep. In one spot back there it's the norm to catch 45 2-3" pinfish in each cast, no matter WHERE you cast! The schools of finger mullet will be cruising through too but not always on top. Check it out.
 

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Great Info...Keep it coming!!
 

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if I sibiki bait and I'm getting a mix of threadfin and crazy fish I put threads in the livewell and crazy in the chumchurn...lol

also, keep a 5gal bucket to put the threadfin in when you catch them, fill it with salt water and then put the baits in there, when you get the number you want carefully pour them into the livewell, being careful not to dump in all of the lost scales, and through the day make sure you are keeping an eye on the outflow of the livewell, those scales can get it all clogged up.
 

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Man, it's helpful replies like these on catching bait that make reading this forum worthwhile for this old fisherman!! I don't abide by most of the smartass answers that pop up on many of the threads but more helpful threads like this are always welcome!! :clap
 

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A question for fishermon, I notice that you hooked that hardtail through the tail with the leading hook and put the stinger hook into its nose. What is the reason for rigging your bait backwards like that??

Ya gotta remember that I am a lifelong freshwater fisherman and am almost totally ignorant about fishing the salt so go easy on me, eh??
 
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