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Discussion Starter #1
All,

My son and I will be going on a head boat this week. I have fished on the boat several times over the last few years and it’s seems as though a couple of folks always catch more and bigger fish.

My question is this. What can I do to do the same. I am an experienced angler and have no issue with tying my own leaders, etc. I’m thinking fluorocarbon leaders and maybe fresh dead bait.

Any other suggestions??

Thanks,

Micropterous
 

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Bring your own gear and baits...the party boats are rigged for customers to catch mingos and other reef fish mainly with small hooks. Bring your own rod and tie on a slip lead with a bigger hook, 7/0 works good for snapper. Drop big whole butterflied baits or large strips of fresh bonito. If somebody around you catches a ruby lip, butterfly that sucker and send it back down. Dodging tangles on a party boat is the hardest part about snapper fishing on them
 

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Head Boats

I have spent a lot of time on the boats out of Perdido Key. I can tell you that bait makes a difference. Larger or live baits and frozen cigs are the preferred baits. Also, fluorocarbon leaders and LIGHT tackle are the best tools you can have. I use heavy stuff on my boat but on the head boat trips I like 30-50 fluorocarbon (leaders) and lighter weights. My favorite setup is a small conventional or spinning rod with 30-40lb and a knocker rig with a 3/4-1oz weight. Just let it sink slowly and the bigger fish will be high in the water.
 

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I have spent a lot of time on the boats out of Perdido Key. I can tell you that bait makes a difference. Larger or live baits and frozen cigs are the preferred baits. Also, fluorocarbon leaders and LIGHT tackle are the best tools you can have. I use heavy stuff on my boat but on the head boat trips I like 30-50 fluorocarbon (leaders) and lighter weights. My favorite setup is a small conventional or spinning rod with 30-40lb and a knocker rig with a 3/4-1oz weight. Just let it sink slowly and the bigger fish will be high in the water.
You drop that light of lead down on a packed party boat and some current ripping and you will tangle everybody on the boat. Now, no current and some elbow room and you might be fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies. I also stopped by Half Hitch for suggestions and to pick up supplies. Their take was skip the fluorocarbon leader and smaller weight. Use bigger hooks, whole squid, and when someone catches a small fish legal to use for bait butterfly it and drop down.
 

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You drop that light of lead down on a packed party boat and some current ripping and you will tangle everybody on the boat. Now, no current and some elbow room and you might be fine.
I always try to get on the stern if possible so that I can let my lighter stuff work. If you are toward the bow or mid-ship you are correct, it will cause issues.
 

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Literally just fished a party boat 2 days ago and a guy was on the back dropping a slip lead with 8 oz, had some current...tangled about 5-6 people every time he dropped
 
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