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O P P O R T U N I T I E S

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EDITOR IN CHIEF : Ben Martin • camads@coastalanglermagazine.com VICE PRESIDENT : Tracy Patterson • tracy@coastalanglermagazine.com ART DIRECTOR : Rebecca Snowden • graphics@coastalanglermagazine.com EDITORIAL COORDINATOR : Nick Carter • editorial@coastalanglermagazine.com WEBMASTER : Dmitriy Pislyagin • webmaster@coastalanglermagazine.com

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Come Join our Team! The edition of the magazine that you are reading is put together by our local franchisee co-publisher. Your co-publisher’s contact information is shown in the directory adjacent to this article. We currently publish editions of this magazine each month throughout the Continental United States. Our plan is to continue growing and to continue adding locations. If you love the outdoors and have ever considered owning your own business, you owe it to yourself to take a look at our franchise opportunities. Our franchise publishing model will enable you to make money doing what you love, being involved in the outdoor/marine industry. You don’t need to have prior publishing experience. We train you on how to do that. What you do need is a love of the outdoors and a somewhat adventurous spirit. Opening a new business is exciting and, yes, it requires hard work and commitment. But, once you bring this magazine to your community you will find it to be very rewarding and you will have created one of the best jobs and career opportunities that any angler could ever imagine. If you’re like us, owning your own fishing magazine may be an opportunity for you to be involved in an industry that you’re passionate about. Imagine never dreading to go to work but rather being excited about sharing the message of your magazine. Our ideal strategic growth would have franchise opportunities in the following locations, however, we have found that nearly any area that has an avid fishing community can be a good location for it’s own fishing magazine.

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Hauling Mutton And Grouper

Off The Marathon Bottom By CAM Staff

Darcie Arahill’s biggest mutton snapper to date came from 200 feet of water off Marathon in the Florida Keys.

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ottom fishing is about hard-pulling fish and filling the cooler with some delicious table fare. With grouper season in full swing, there may be no better way to get your daily workout than floating over a reef or wreck. And you’d be hard pressed to find a better place to do it than off of Marathon in the Florida Keys. Darcie Arahill, host of the YouTube channel Darcizzle Offshore, spent a day with Capt. Dave Schugar and the crew with Sweet E’Nuf Charters out of Marathon and absolutely loaded the coolers with mutton snapper, amberjack, blackfin tuna and yellowtail snapper. It was the kind of trip that bottom fishing is supposed to be. Capt. Dave spent the early part of the day hopping from wreck to wreck and patch reef to patch reef, briefly prospecting each one with baits before moving on in search of hungry fish. He eventually found them over structure in about 200 feet of water. “You gotta keep moving to find those bites,” said Darcie, understanding the searching it takes to find productive bottom. But after setting up a drift on this spot, the whole boat knew they were on the fish. The action started quickly and it was fast, with multiple double and triple hookups. They caught some fish vertical jigging, but Darcie’s largest mutton snapper ever—a beautiful 13.6-pounder—was battled off the bottom after it ate a live pinfish. The live-bait rig consisted of a pinfish hooked through the lips with a circle hook, which was tied into 25 feet of leader and a three-way swivel. A 10-oz. teardrop sinker was deployed off the other arm of the swivel to get the bait down to the bottom. The group hauled several muttons up from the depths, and they also caught amberjack, jack crevalle, bonita and blackfin tuna off the same spot. Capt. Dave took the opportunity to give a quick demonstration on how to properly bleed a blackfin to deliver better tasting fillets to the table. Instead of cutting the fish’s throat, use your hands to tear the gills beneath the gill plate.

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“You don’t want to cut the heart,” he said. “You want to cut the gills so all the blood can drip out… The heart’s still pumping, but it breaks the circuit so all the blood will pump right out.” With the fish boxes filling up, Capt. Dave decided it was a good time to head for shallower water to pursue grouper and yellowtail snapper. They ended the run in about 100 feet of water over the sunken center swing span of the original Seven Mile Bridge. In the 1980s, 4,500 tons of concrete and steel from the bridge were sunk as a part of Florida’s artificial reef program. Constructed in 1912, the Over-Sea Railroad bridge connected the Florida Keys to the mainland and to each other for the first time. Now pieces of the railroad make great fish habitat. With a couple heavy-duty grouper rigs deployed with big live grunts, Darcie went to work on the yellowtail. Yellowtail fishing with light tackle offers fast action and delicious fish. It’s a lot of fun and a perfect style of fishing for families, Darcie said. With chum out, it’s as easy as flipping out a piece of cut bait on a lightweight spinning rod and allowing it to drift with the chum until a fish picks up the bait. As the boxes continued to fill, this time with yellowtail, there was a vicious takedown on one of the grouper rods. A grueling struggle to haul the fish up was rewarded with a big 25-pound black grouper. It was the exclamation point on the end of a fine day on the water. Check out Darcie’s YouTube channel Darcizzle Offshore at www.youtube.com/user/DarcizzleOffshore.

To see more Mutton fishing with Darcizzle, go to

CRYSTALSALTWATERS.COM

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The History Of Rapala

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t all began with a hungry Finnish guy and a carving knife. It was the 1930s when a simple fisherman made an observation of simple genius: Big fish eat little fish, especially little fish that are wounded. So began one of the greatest fishing stories ever told. As Lauri Rapala fished the waters of Finland’s Lake Paijanne, he quietly rowed and watched. And what he saw was how hungry predator fish would dart into a school of minnows and attack the one that swam with a slightly off-center wobble. Lauri realized that if he could craft a lure that mimicked the movements of a wounded minnow, he could catch more fish, earn more money, and not spend time constantly baiting lines. So Lauri set to work. He whittled, carved and shaved. Eventually a lure took shape. Using a shoemaker’s knife and some sandpaper, he created his first successful lure from cork in 1936. Tinfoil from chocolate bars formed the lure’s outer surface. Melted photographic negatives were the protective coating. It perfectly imitated the action of a wounded minnow. Legend has it that Lauri sometimes caught 600 pounds of fish a day with that new lure. And as word of his abundant catches spread, the lure’s reputation grew. The rest, as they say, is history. That first lure was the forefather to the lure that has helped more fishermen experience the thrill of more big fish than any other: the legendary Original Floating Rapala. As fishermen around the world began to catch more and bigger fish with Rapala’s lure, it became clear that what triggered them was the lure’s tantalizing

wiggle and wobble. Even though fish throughout the world are different, predators and baitfish always acted true to form. Big fish hammer wounded little fish. That’s why Lauri tested each lure to make sure it swam true to the unique “wounded-minnow action.” It wasn’t the fastest way to make a fishing lure. But it was the only way to make a Rapala. To this day, Rapala lures are hand-tuned and tank-tested to swim perfectly right out of the box. It’s an action as distinct to a Rapala as a fingerprint is to a person. With every unforgettable trip of a lifetime, every successful Saturday afternoon with a kid at the local fishing hole, the Rapala legend grew. A deep-seated trust formed between anglers and Rapala. Weekenders became hardcore. Dads became heroes. More and more fishermen began reaching for Rapala. For millions, success could be measured by the growing number of trophy fish caught on Rapala lures. To this day, no other lure holds more world records. And because we the designers at Rapala are fishermen first, they know not only what fishermen need, but what they can’t live without. When the Shad Rap exploded onto the scene, its ability to catch fish spread like wildfire. Tackle shops sold out across the country. Resort owners and mom-and-pop bait shops rented out Shad Raps by the day, and even by the hour. Yes, it was that good. Twenty years later, it’s still one of fishing’s most successful lures. Likewise, the moment Rapala introduced Fish ’n Fillet knives, they enhanced the fishing experience for millions. The tapered design and unique flexibility of the Fish ’n Fillet made filleting easier, which is why they’re still the number one fillet knives in the world. And so a foundation was laid. The successes of the Original Floater, Shad Rap, and Fish ’n Fillet were followed by other Rapala products that found their way into tackle boxes and history books. They are lures like the Magnum, the Rattlin’ Rapala, the Fat Rap, the CountDown, the Husky Jerk and the Tail Dancer. There’s a reason so many fishermen around the world put their faith in Rapala. It’s a confidence that stretches through 140 countries and is validated each year by the 20 million Rapala lures sold. Simply put, Rapala products make better fishermen. Nothing is rushed to market; everything is carefully crafted from years of experience. It is a legacy of unwavering quality that can be seen in every lure, every fillet knife, every tool, and every cast of our premium monofilament line. It is a legacy that continues with new Rapala offerings, new actions, new sizes, new colors, new finishes, new tools, new accessories and new ways of catching more fish. The sweet smell of success lingers long after the scent of fish slime fades. Tens of millions of walleye, trout, bass, wahoo, snook and tarpon later, Rapala continues to stand the test of time. Because through it all, one simple truth has endured. That which is irresistible to fish will always be irresistible to the fisherman.

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ne of the most prolific inshore species available to anglers on any coast, spotted seatrout come in two varieties: eaters and gators. Eater trout—those measuring in the 15-inch range—are extremely popular, due to their affinity to gather in big schools and chase down lures. Gator trout, however, are a whole different ballgame. Targeting big trout requires a different approach. Most resources suggest moderate-sized artificial lures, like imitation shrimp, for seatrout of any size. Yet, on numerous occasions, I’ve had big gators run down and attempt to swallow smaller trout while I’ve reeled them in. As seatrout grow larger, their diets shift from small crustaceans to almost exclusively fish—the bigger the better. Live baits are my preference for targeting big fish. Mullet are a favorite, as are pinfish and croakers. With big baits in the livewell, it’s time to find gator water. While it’s common to find schools of smaller trout in deeper channels adjacent to shallow flats, trophy trout spend more time around subtle depressions and breaks. If you’re catching large numbers of eaters, a change of areas is usually required to find gators. Most of my fishing is done in super-skinny water in heavily pressured areas with tough fish. Fishing these small, shallow areas requires stealth and patience. For big trout, I move into an area as quietly as possible, put the Talon down, and wait.

As things settle down, it’s important to assess the area. Flooded oyster bars or current-swept mangroves are always worth a shot, but don’t overlook inconspicuous spots. If an area is relatively shallow, with one washout or depression that’s just a foot deeper than everything else, that spot can be key, especially at low tide. Before the first cast is made, it’s important to select proper tackle. Line and hook size should be greater than what’s considered routine. With a mainline of 20-pound braid, I attach a long leader of 25-pound test fluorocarbon. It’s my only hope against razor-sharp oyster bars. I tie on a 5/0 to 7/0 VMC circle hook that’s super strong. A small float helps keep track of a hard-swimming mullet. It’s important to lob baits delicately toward the target. However, once a fish is hooked, any delicacy is tossed aside, as big inshore fish don’t play nice. Here, the proper rod becomes key to the equation. I like St. Croix’s Mojo Inshore rods for gator trout hunting. These rods are workhorses, covered in a double layer of finishing cure and backed by a five-year warranty. But durability doesn’t come at the sacrifice of quality. Mojo Inshore models are built from SCII graphite and contain hardcore components. Longer models aid in casting, hooksets and moving big fish away from cover; the 7’6” medium-heavy is perfect. Once your trophy trout is boat-side, be sure to handle it carefully. Summertime water temperatures leave these fish compromised after a fight. Giant spotted trout are rare and always females; to release them in a healthy state ensures a future for us all.

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Beautiful Log Home Erected in One Day!

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ounds incredible, doesn’t it? When we first heard that statement from Chip Smith, Owner of Blue Ridge Log Cabins, I smiled and said, “We would like to see that.” Chip’s confident smile back and his reply, “Great. Let’s get you scheduled to observe a cabin construction first hand.” The following article documents the amazing process developed by Blue Ridge Log Cabins and verifies construction of a 5,000 square foot log cabin in one day! This awesome engineering feat can be viewed in a time-lapse video by visiting www.blueridgelogcabins.com. Take a look; it’s quite impressive. Celebrating 25 years as an innovator in their industry, Blue Ridge Log Cabins have been featured on “Extreme Makeover,” HGTV’s “Amazing Log Homes” and were recognized as America’s Favorite Log Homes 2017 in a survey conducted by Log Cabin Hub. Editor’s Note: the logs used by Blue Ridge Log Cabins are engineered in their state of the art, 110,000 square foot, temperature-controlled production facility in South Carolina and are kiln-

dried and precisley constructed in their facility. Every log fits perfectly before it arrives to your job site. In their system, your log home has already been constructed at their facility before it arrives to be assembled. Nothing is left to chance, no guesswork, no hassles. It truly is an amazing process to watch. Their process is a truly personalized experience. They have a wide variety of floor plans to choose from in their Estate, Classic and Cabin Collections. Or bring your own ideas to them and let Blue Ridge Log Cabins customize a home for you. Then choose your style and decor so that your home truly is unique to you. All plans are reviewed and approved by a licensed third-party engineer to make certain all local building codes are met. The Blue Ridge Log Cabins team will visit your land to ensure there are no unexpected surprises as construction commences. Should you need help in finding the perfect property, they can assist with that, as well. Once you finalize your plan and design your home, Blue Ridge Log Cabins’ team of experts begin building your home inside their facility. While your foundation is going in on your property, they’re building your dream home including electrical, plumbing, windows and doors as well as installing appliances, fixtures, cabinetry and more. Once your home is delivered to your property and onsite construction begins, your dream cabin will be up before the day is over. If you enjoy the beauty and ambiance of wood and the mystique of log home living you owe it to yourself to see how easily and economically a Blue Ridge Log Cabin can come together. We were impressed and have no doubt that you will be too. For more information, please visit www.blueridgelogcabins.net or call toll free 888-340-9782.

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By Capt. Michael Okruhlik • Photo courtesy of Controlled Descent Lures

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he Texas summer surf can spoil a newcomer in a heartbeat and is what the seasoned surf angler awaits each year. Vacation days are set aside well in advance and excuses to come in late to work are ready and often recycled. Spoil a newcomer, addiction, you might ask, what is so special about the surf? My fastest limit, 10 trout from the upper Texas coast, came on 12 consecutive casts. One was a dud, a lost fish, and 10 were solid trout, 19.5 to 24 inches. After I caught my limit, I continued to catch and release solid trout up to 5 ½ pounds. If that doesn’t spoil you, nothing will. Days like this are not uncommon when the conditions are right. The key to a successful morning in the surf is to remember you don’t plan a trip when you want, you go when the surf calls you. Green incoming tides rising with the sun paired with a calm surf are my favored conditions. May and June routinely provide the best odds of landing the larger trout with Independence Day marking the arrival of masses of school-size fish. I like to start my day before the sun’s rays illuminate the horizon. Standing on the sand, tossing topwaters or suspending baits parallel and as close to the sand as I can effectively work the lure. I have caught many trout pushing 7 pounds along with large flounder and snook using this approach. It is amazing the size of fish that will feed in mere inches of breaking water. As the blanket of darkness no longer conceals my presence, I will begin to gradually angle my casts towards the open Gulf. I will broaden my search area and structure type until I find where the fish are feeding, never overlooking the shallow water where I began my day. As the sun climbs, the trout will typically find comfort in the guts, chasing mullet, shrimp, shad and other baitfish. When this occurs, I still vary my cast from parallel to offshore, covering the deep guts and not overlooking the structure, which is the bar. As you would do while fishing the bay, don’t overlook the drop off. Casting along it can produce great catches. White water and waves crashing is an often-overlooked hot spot. I seldom see surf fishermen casting into the whitewash, which can be a huge mistake. The turbulence disorients the baitfish which are easy meals for the thick-bodied, strong-swimming surf trout. I can remember one day in particular when most, if not all, of my trout were caught in the white water on top of the bar. A solid trout inhaled my slow-sinking lure as it tossed and turned in the froth. After that, I made repeated casts into the turbid water to end a successful day that up until that point had been quite slow. Let me check the forecast, is it calm yet? Capt. Michael Okruhlik is the inventor of Controlled Descent Lures and the owner of www.MyCoastOutdoors.com.

For basics on Surf Fishing, go to

www.coveralls.biz

FISHINGWATERS.CO

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DAVID MANEY, FOWLER’S SUNGLASSES

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aving been actively involved in the sunglasses industry for over 20 years and having sold over 25,000 pairs of sunglasses last year, I’m often asked, “What is the most important thing to consider when choosing a pair of sunglasses?” My answer is always, “the way they fit your face; comfort is the most important consideration.” I’m surprised at the number of people who choose their sunglasses based on brand. For anglers, and I am one, the next consideration can be offshore or inshore. The blue mirror lens models hold the best lens clarity for offshore while the green mirror/amber lenses produce the clearest lens visibility for the inshore angler. I’ve been a big fan of Revo’s Blue Crawlers for my offshore sunglasses, and I switch to my ambers as my go-to inshore glasses. Another big consideration for some is OSHA-approved eyewear. The correct approval body is ANSI approved. This ANSI validation of the sunglasses is the only accepted approval by OSHA’s requirements, however, few brands actually possess the ANSI approval. If OSHA requirements are important for your choice of sunglasses, make sure you’re seeing the ANSI approval in writing and not simply relying on your representative’s assurance. Finally, if you’re a prescription eyewear user, ensuring that the lens you receive when you request your prescription sunglasses from your favorite brand is not always apples to apples. Make sure that the exact same lens technology

is available for your prescription sunglasses as their nonprescription lenses. Otherwise, you could own an expensive pair of non-angler-friendly sunglasses. Believe me, it happens all the time. There are many new entries in the sunglasses field these days. Lens technology advancements continue to improve the quality of the angler’s viewpoint. If you’re in the market for a new pair of sunglasses, I recommend you do a little research before you make your purchase. Don’t just go buy XYZ sunglasses. Find the pair, regardless of brand, that’s best for you. If Fowler’s can be of any assistance in helping you make that decision, please feel free to call or email us. We’re happy to help ensure that you’re completely satisfied with your next sunglasses purchase. David Maney is considered to be one of the most published experts in the general field of sunglasses. He has appeared in Southern Living Magazine, USA Today and U.S. World Report and even appeared on Oprah. Fowler’s has been in business for 118 years and has sold over 250,000 pairs of sunglasses. For more information on Fowler’s and David Maney, visit www.fowlerssunglasses.com or call 888-340-9021.

6 Reasons Why Fowler’s Sells More Sunglasses than Anyone Else in the U.S. Over 250,000 Pairs Sold #1. Price #2. Selection #3. Price #4. Selection #5. Price #6. Selection

Since 1955

Toll Free

888-340-9021

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SUNGLASSES NATIVE EYEWEAR SIGHTCASTER Native Eyewear’s Sightcaster is all about giving you the right tool for the pursuit of a good catch. Color enhanced, high-definition optics cut through glare on the water allowing you to see deeper and farther. Native’s premium polarized lens technology also blocks up to four times more infrared and protects against harmful UV rays, helping your eyes stay fresh even after a long day on the water. The full-wrap, X-Large frame comes with nonslip grip material along the temples and nose pads to ensure all-day comfort with a lightweight and secure fit.

WWW.NATIVEEYEWEAR.COM COSTA REMORA

Costa Del Mar was born on the water and is committed to protecting it. This summer, Costa will celebrate its tradition of conservation by launching its OCEARCH Limited Edition collection. Costa is a primary supporter of OCEARCH, a research organization that generates critical scientific data on keystone marine species like great white and tiger sharks. Its vessel, the M/V OCEARCH, is an at-sea laboratory that puts science on the side of sharks to help protect our oceans worldwide. One of the models in this OCEARCH Limited Edition collection is the Remora, a brand new frame that features all of Costa’s signature performance technologies. This particular pair features a brand new lens as well! The Gray Silver Mirror lens is great for all-day wear. It is a polycarbonate lens with silver mirror on a gray base. The frame color is called Tiger Shark, and reflects the patterns of its namesake. Think of it as the popular tortoise shell in a more shark and ocean-inspired colorway! MSRP: $169. These glasses also come with a limited edition cleaning cloth and C-MASK. For more on OCEARCH, go to www.ocearch.org.

WWW.COSTADELMAR.COM RIO RAY SEASIDE Rio Ray Optics is the best new brand and most comfortable polarized sunglasses on the market. Designed for the outdoor lifestyle, all Rio Ray sunglasses come with 100 percent optically correct polarized CR39 lenses, indestructible TR90 frames, optical spring hinges for maximum comfort and a hassle-free lifetime warranty. All Rio Ray hard-coated polarized lenses are made of the highest quality CR39 and contain nine layers of protection with 100 percent UV protection. A hydrophobic coating on the front repels water, sunscreen and dirt, which makes cleaning and maintenance easy. A vibrant flash mirror provides additional glare reduction and a superior scratch resistant coating prevents lens damage. The backside anti-reflective coating eliminates bounce-back glare. Rio Ray MaxFlex frame technology makes these the most comfortable sunglasses on the market utilizing lightweight TR90 nylon, which maintains the frame shape and offers incredible durability. Our frames were designed to be 100 percent prescription ready, and each pair comes with a full array of accessories including a hard and soft case, cleaning cloth and retainer. There are over 40 styles to choose from, an average MSRP of only $149.99, and new styles are on the way for each season. Replacement lenses are available for only $24.99. Rio Ray is always looking for high-quality retailers to partner with, and they have the best retailer friendly program in the sunglass industry. For dealer inquires, call 800-498-2104 or email jarrod@ riorayoptics.com.

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S RE VIEW2017 REVO GUIDE S AND GUIDE II Back in 1985, Revo became a global performance eyewear brand known as the leader in polarized lens technology. Their glasses were first created utilizing lens technology developed by NASA as solar protection for satellites. Today, Revo continues to build on its rich tradition of technology and innovation by offering the clearest and most advanced high-contrast polarized sunglass available. With two new frames, the Guide II and the Guide S, Revo seeks to fill the needs of those seeking the best in performance sunglasses. Both frames feature HighContrast Polarized Serilium lenses that are lightweight, shatterproof and formulated of polycarbonate. Revo’s 8-base lens technology offers a more curved fit relative to your face, and elastometric nosepads provide a more secure fit for active wearers. Sleek and modern, the Guide II adds an element of comfort to the all-activity, allcondition mentality. What carries on in the Guide lineage, however, is the confidence to exceed expectations and reach the objective. The Guide S blends all-terrain functionality with a sleek fit. They are equipped with fast-flow vents and Motion-Fit technology for optimal comfort in any condition or environment.

WWW.REVO.COM

SKELETON OPTICS RENEGADE

FLYING FISHERMAN MORAY

New for 2018, take hold and be bold with Flying Fisherman’s Moray sunglasses, a sporty frame equipped to take your fishing game to the next level. Built with durability and comfort in mind for anglers who work hard and play even harder, the medium fit, semi-rimless wrap-around frame provides generous lens coverage, helping shield the sun from all angles. Non-slip, co-injected temples and adjustable, rubberized nosepiece give this frame solid performance and comfort for all-day wear. The Flying Fisherman Polarized, AcuTint lens coloring system eliminates glare and enhances color contrast, without distorting natural colors. The enhanced visual sharpness and comfort adds to fishing productivity, and maximizes the outdoors experience for anglers and watersports enthusiasts who need to see below the water’s surface to spot fish and structure. Morays are available in matte black frames with copper-red mirror, smoke, or smoke blue-mirror lenses, matte grey frames with smoke blue-mirror lenses, and matte white frames with smoke-blue mirror AcuTint lenses. MSRP is $24.95 - $29.95, and the Moray will be in stores this September. Call 305-852-8989 or visit the website for more information or to receive a free catalog.

WWW.FLYINGFISHERMAN.COM

POPTICALS POPSTAR

Skeleton Optics high-performance eyewear delivers superb craftsmanship, trend-forward innovation and advanced technology for outdoor enthusiasts everywhere. From the Rocky Mountains to the Atlantic Ocean, Skeleton Optics sunglasses are designed to empower ordinary people to do extraordinary things, inspiring them to live the “No Boundaries” lifestyle. The new Skeleton Optics Renegade frames not only embrace that belief but take it to the next level. Adding to their already popular Original Collection, Skeleton Optics took the wraparound feature of the best-selling Scout model, and extended the frame width while working closely with the Zeiss Optical team to increase the lens height and create the all new Renegade sunglasses. Rugged and durable, yet sleek and stylish, Renegade sunglasses are perfect for a day on the water, on the trail, in the car, at the beach or in town. Renegades feature polarized polycarbonate lenses by Zeiss with 100 percent UV protection and advanced TRI-PEL/RI-PEL coating to enhance colors and promote clear vision in any outdoor environment. Lenses also include a premium hard coating for scratch and impact resistance. Grilamid TR-90 frames were designed and manufactured in Italy for lasting durability, comfort and protection. The in-line nosepiece is anti-slip and moisture wicking. Specifications: • Base Curve of 8 • DBL: 18mm • Temple Length: 115mm • Lens Size A/B: A65xB40 For information, call 888-564-9025.

WWW.SKELETON-SUNGLASSES.COM

Sunglasses are a necessity, but they’re also a burden. There is an ever-present possibility to lose or damage this expensive piece equipment. And you can forget about storing a conventional pair in a case in your pocket. They’re just too bulky. That’s where Popticals steps in. This revolutionary new line of portable, pop-out sunglasses has a patented design that makes storage safe and convenient. Popticals’ FL2 Micro-Rail System allows the sunglasses to easily fold down to be stored in a small hardshell case. You won’t even notice this compact design in your pocket, and the unit can be clipped to anything with an included carabiner. These glasses are high-performance, as well. The NYDEF Nylon Lenses manufactured by Carl Zeiss Vision are clearer and 16 percent lighter in weight than polycarbonate lenses. They offer complete UV protection, filtering out 100 percent of harmful UVA and UVB rays, while hydrophobic and oleophobic technology repels water, oil, sweat and dust. The Swiss Grilamid TR 90 frames provide long-lasting durability and resistance to extreme temperatures while remaining lightweight and comfortable for extended use. Popticals are engineered in the U.S.A and handcrafted in Italy. See the Popticals website for a wide range of styles designed for any outdoor pursuit.

WWW.POPTICALS.COM

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FLY FISHING

TARPON TIME: THE TWO HANDED STRIP

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t’s tarpon time! Many of you will be headed to tarpon waters this summer looking to hook one of ocean’s greatest gamefish on the fly. When you go, consider altering your fly retrieval technique from the standard one-hand strip to the two-handed stip. If you do, you might be surprised at how effective a two-hand strip can be at catching this great gamefish. There are some saltwater fish that react to a fly that is stripped as fast as possible. Tuna, barracuda, roosterfish, amberjack and yellowtail are all good examples. These guys prefer a fly that moves like an Indianapolis racecar. If the fly isn’t imitating a fleeing baitfish, and suddenly stops, this group of gamers will turn and swim away. The two-handed strip is also a wonderful technique for feeding a well-presented fly to a tarpon. But there is a difference. The twohanded strip is slightly different for tarpon than it is for offshore and nearshore species. Where offshore fish like tuna want the fly to burn through the water without pause, a tarpon often wants to see the fly move through the water at a slower pace while still keeping the fly’s continual motion. An advantage of the two hand strip technique is the angler has total control of the fly’s pace through the water, making it possible for the angler to speed up or slow down the fly depending on the reaction of the tarpon to the fly. For example, if a tarpon reacts aggressively toward the fly, the angler might speed up the retrieve to initiate a strike. If the tarpon’s reaction is less aggressive, almost passive, the angler can manipulate the fly’s speed and try to turn on the tarpon’s “light switch” to instigate a strike. Another advantage to using the two-hand retrieve is that the rod is placed under the arm rather than in the hands, making it almost impossible to lift the rod tip on a strike. This combats the urge of freshwater converts to set the hook by lifting the rod, a big no-no

in tarpon fishing. With the rod under and arm, the only way to hook the fish is with a solid stripstrike. For a successful twohanded strip do the following: • After the fly has been cast, place the rod under the arm (right or left). • Point the rod tip down, keeping the tip on the water at all times. • Begin the strip by pulling the fly line with your hand at the first stripping guide. Repeat this with the other hand. • There should be a continual motion, changing hands with each strip. • Vary the speed of the fly as you strip it through the water. • Strip the fly all the way to the boat and repeat. If you feel a strike, give your line a solid strip-strike. Use the two-handed strip, and I guarantee you will never go back to the one-hand strip again. Good luck on the tarpon grounds this season!

For Tackle Box Essentials from Bowman, go to

CAMFLYFISHING.COM

High Performance Eyewear

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FLORIDA

Big Turnout for Sebastian Exchange Club Blue Water Open

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he 24th Annual Sebastian Exchange Club Blue Water Open was held on June 3 with tournament headquarters at Capt. Hiram’s Resort in Sebastian. Despite the weather, it was a great success, with a fleet of 110 boats registered to fish. Fifty boats weighed fish and reported mixed results on the catch.

The dolphin bite was sketchy, with the first and second place fish weighing in at 26.35 and 21.85 pounds. They were caught aboard C Monster with Capt. Matt Lennon. The 21.85-pound dolphin landed Matt’s son, Matthew, the Junior Angler award and a new kayak. Only one wahoo was weighed in, a 35.05-pounder caught by George Kessel, of Grant, on the Shake Down. George reported the fish was caught around midday in about 150 feet of water. Several nice kingfish made it to the scales. Celtic Knots took first and second place in that category with a 40.5-pound and a 33.6-pound fish, caught by Steve Fritzson. The real money was made by the fishing team aboard Restricted Species. These guys took first place grouper with a 45.05-pounder and second place with a 34.15-pounder. That big grouper, caught by Rob Reilly, won them the Big Fish Bonanza for a whopping $4,720, in addition to $1,000 for a new award this year, The Capt. William Charles Catchin’ and Cookin’ Memorial Award for the largest grouper caught in the tournament in memory of Capt. Bill. Interestingly, the 34.15-pound grouper was caught by Matson Scott, who fished with Capt. Bill many times. Matson said he sent up a prayer to Bill on the way out that morning to be with them that day. Looks like prayer may work! First-place fish were worth $1,250 and second place $600. In addition to the four places on the main scoreboard, the Blue Water Open offers an additional 10 places on the Bonus Board worth $200 each, for fishermen who don’t make the main board. Other categories for the biggest fish caught were amberjack, cobia and new this year, tripletail. Cobia and Tripletail went unfilled, but Steve McElveen aboard Wreckreation landed a 39.25 amberjack worth $1,000. Top Boat went to Fred Smith of the Lickety Split with an aggregate weight of 54.45 pounds for three fish in at least two main-board categories. The Top Boat payout was $2,000. For complete tournament results, visit www.bluewateropen.com or like Sebastian Blue Water Open on Facebook. The Exchange Club of Sebastian has raised almost $500,000 over the years through the efforts put forth in the Blue Water Open. All proceeds go to worthy charities in the local community, with a special emphasis on preventing child abuse.

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Mike holds a redfish landed on Ande Backcountry 8-pound test near Useppa Island Club.

By Nadeen Welch

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ike and I decided it was time to get out of Dodge and take a road trip with our flats boat. The hustle and bustle of south Florida makes this kind of trip a stark contrast and welcome break. We ended up on Useppa, a small island between Pine Island and Cabbage Key on the southwest coast of Florida. These places are almost due west of Fort Myers near the mouth of Charlotte Harbor. The path that led us there was anything but ordinary. It was as if we were being beckoned. My first contact with Useppa was from the Palm Beach Boat Show in March. I attended a media event at the Lake Pavilion on the Waterfront and discovered an oasis in the midst of all the craziness of the boat show. It was a gorgeous photo of Useppa Island: paradise without a passport, with an inviting area to relax during the media event. There were some goodies there and information, which I grabbed. That photo just seemed to call me…. We had planned to visit the west coast in the coming weeks, a trip to Bokeelia, on the north end of Pine Island, to fish. Once we finalized

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the dates, I reached out to Brian and Mary—the Useppa People, who are realtors. They invited us to visit the Private Island Club, have lunch at the historic Collier Inn, and then took us on a golf cart tour of the island. There are no roads here, only golf cart paths and walkways. My kind of island! It just seemed magical. We were invited to come back for an overnight visit to experience the island. Brian and Mary made the arrangements for us to return and visit as their guests. So, we loaded the car, hooked up the boat and were off. Pine Island Sound here we come! We stopped in Matlacha and made a phone call to the Pineland Marina to check on bait. Good call. They were out of shrimp. We visited Carrie at the Barnhill Seafood Market in Matlacha who loaded us up with 200 monster shrimp. There was a stream behind the shop where we could get a few buckets of water to transport the shrimp safely to the marina. When you are on an island, you need to be proactive about supplies. Consider travel distances on the water to get what you need, and that options can be limited. We launched the boat; I drove to park for the weekend and was greeted with a golf cart escort to the ramp. Headed out the cut from the marina, it feels as if you are soaring—having been set free from civilization and traffic. The waterways are expansive, and there are multiple mangrove cuts around every turn. There is so much water, so many cuts and areas to explore. The seagrass beds have expanded in the area 10 percent since the storms of 2008. The abundance of shoalgrass and turtlegrass has increased while the abundance of manatee grass has remained stable. In fact, the number of quadrants monitored in the area that are devoid of seagrass has decreased by 50 percent since 2005. This all makes for some clean water and great fishing. Our first visit to Bokeelia, we limited on seatrout every day. On our trip to Useppa a month later, we encountered mostly snook and a monster red, caught by Mike on the next to last shrimp! And there are always tarpon. Nadeen Welch is co-publisher of the Fort Myers edition of Coastal Angler Magazine.

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Health

How a Chicago Doctor Shook Up the Hearing Aid Industry with his Newest Invention New nearly invisible digital hearing aid breaks price barrier - 90% LESS

Reported by J. Page

Chicago: Board-certified physician Dr. S. Cherukuri has done it once again with his newest invention of a medical-grade, ALLDIGITAL, affordable hearing aid. This new digital hearing aid is packed with all the features of $4,000 competitors at a mere fraction of the cost. Now, most people with hearing loss are able to enjoy crystal clear, natural sound—in a crowd, on the phone, in the wind—without suffering through “whistling” and annoying background noise.

Digital Hearing Aid Outperforms Expensive Competitors This sleek, fully programmed, light-weight, hearing aid is the outgrowth of the digital revolution that is changing our world. While demand for “all things digital” caused most prices to plunge (consider DVD players and computers, which originally sold for thousands of dollars and today can be purchased for less), the cost of a digital medical-grade hearing aid remains out of reach. Dr. Cherukuri knew that many of his patients would benefit but couldn’t afford the expense of these new digital hearing aids. Generally they are not covered by Medicare and most private health insurance plans.

Nearly Invisible!

SAME FEATURES AS EXPENSIVE HEARING AID COMPETITORS Mini Behind-the-Ear hearing aid with thin tubing for a nearly

invisible profile Advanced Noise Reduction to make speech clearer Feedback Cancellation eliminates whistling Wide Dynamic Range Compression makes soft sounds audible and loud sounds comfortable Telecoil setting for use with compatible phones, and looped environments like churches 3 Programs and Volume Dial accommodate most common types of hearing loss even in challenging listening environments

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to your listening environment — prioritizing speech and de-emphasizing background noise. Experience all of the sounds you’ve been missing at a price you can afford. This doctor designed and approved hearing aid comes with a full year’s supply of long-life batteries. It delivers crisp, clear sound all day long and the soft flexible ear domes are so comfortable you won’t realize you’re wearing them.

Try it Yourself at Home With Our 45-Day RISK-FREE Trial

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Can a hearing aid delay or prevent dementia? A study by Johns Hopkins and the National Institute on Aging suggests older individuals with hearing loss are significantly more likely to develop dementia over time than those who retain their hearing. They suggest that an intervention—such as a hearing aid—could delay or prevent dementia by improving hearing!

“Satisfied Buyers Agree AIR is the Best Digital Value!” “I am hearing things I didn’t know I was missing. Really amazing. I’m wearing them all the time.” —Larry I., Indiana “Almost work too well. I am a teacher and hearing much better now.” —Lillian B., California “I have used many expensive hearing aids, some over $5,000. The AIRs have greatly improved my enjoyment of life.” —Sam Y., Michigan

The doctor evaluated the high priced digital hearing aids on the market, broke them down to their base components, and then created his own affordable version - called the MDHearingAid AIR® for its virtually invisible, lightweight appearance.

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By Diane Claridge, PhD and Charlotte Dunn, PhD

When you upgrade your outboards at a Mastry Suzuki Repower Center, you have chosen the best 4-stroke technology available. Plus, you receive the exclusive Owner’s Edge advantage, the benefits of which include: Suzuki Repower Network Support Exclusive Discounts on Parts and Service Unique Trade Allowance Program Access to Parts Online Special Events Informative Seminars

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urns out that’s a difficult question to answer. Beaked whales feed at more than ½ mile down and are fairly skittish critters while near the surface, and weighing in at over a ton means catching, measuring and releasing is certainly not an option! Besides, perhaps a more important question is, who cares how big these whales are? Well, the U.S. Navy, that’s who. Unfortunately for beaked whales, their deep-diving behavior means they share waters with Navy submarines, and when the Navy uses powerful sonar during training exercises, beaked whales are affected. Recent studies at the U.S. Navy’s Atlantic Test and Evaluation Center (AUTEC), off Andros Island in The Bahamas indicate that Blainville’s beaked whales move away from sonar when they hear it. We believe this movement is displacing whales from their preferred feeding areas and are concerned this will compromise the animals’ body condition, which will impact their survival and reproduction success. And that’s why size matters. With funding from the U.S. Office of Naval Research, the Bahamas Marine Mammal Research Organisation (BMMRO) and NOAA Fisheries, we conducted a feasibility study to test whether a drone could be used to measure length and girth of beaked whales. Using length, we can monitor growth as animals mature, while girth measurements tell us if an animal is pregnant, and if so, we can monitor if the calf survives. Based in Sandy Point, off the southwest coast of Abaco Island, BMMRO has been studying beaked whales for 25 years and knows these whales individually: how old they are, what sex they are, how many offspring they have had, etc. So, Abaco was the ideal place to try to get measurements of whales of known age and current reproductive state. From our Novurania 680DL rigid-hulled inflatable, our science team deployed a small APH-22 marine hexacopter named “Goose” with a camera attached to obtain vertical images from 100 feet above beaked whales. During 30 flights over the 2-week study, “Goose” successfully photographed 10 different beaked whales. So, we now had images in hand of males and females, both young and old, as well as females with and without calves. So… how big is a beaked whale? Blainville’s beaked whales ranged in length from the smallest calf measuring 9 feet to the largest adult at 14 feet. The girth of one female seen without a calf was notably larger than the other females, and we predicted she was pregnant. Three months after the study ended, we saw her again with a newborn calf! With the success of our feasibility study, plans are to apply this approach to measure the length of beaked whales at AUTEC and monitor pregnancies to determine if displacement from sonar is causing nutritional stress and affecting reproductive success. It is the responsibility of the U.S. Navy and the science community to effectively monitor populations that are being impacted to affect change when needed. This study serves an example of that process in action. The authors are research biologists with the Bahamas Marine Mammal Research Organisation. Follow the organization’s work at http://www.bahamaswhales.org and also on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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THE ALTERNATIVE TO BUYING A NEW BOAT

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LOWER UNIT LOCKING SYSTEM REMOVE

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FISH & FISHING

LURE LOGIC

S

MARK SOSIN

ome lessons gnaw at your memory for years. A group of highly skilled fly fishermen stood on the bank of a well-known river visiting and talking about nothing important. Suddenly, within casting range, a trout kept rising and picking insects off the surface. One of the long time anglers began casting a dry fly upstream of the fish, letting it float past the target. Nothing happened. He made cast after cast, watching the trout ignore his offering and keep feeding on the real thing. I saw it happen. For no particular reason, the angler made a cast that was slightly (and I mean slightly) different from all the others. The trout rose and took the fly. Witnessing that made me totally aware that success or failure when fishing an artificial lure could hinge on a factor almost too minor to notice. I’ve seen times when vibrating your wrist when retrieving a plug spelled a strike while simply cranking the reel proved futile. There have been times when a momentary pause in reeling a plug allowed it to rise slightly and that made the difference. A tackle box full of different artificials is not the answer. You can get by with a half-dozen different baits once you learn how to fish them effectively. The basic rule states that if you are not getting strikes, vary the retrieve. Fish are cold-blooded and react slower and for shorter distances as the water temperature drops. When a fish is holding in one spot waiting for food to come to it, your cast and retrieve should follow that pattern. And keep in mind that your favorite lures on your home waters work just as well on the road. I’ve caught the same species on the same lure a continent apart. In your selection of lures, you want to be able to cover the water column from the bottom to the surface. That doesn’t mean each bait has to travel that distance, but rather that you should have some that work the bottom, others for the surface, and the rest in between at mid-depth. Fish see differently than we do. What looks good to you may not tempt a fish into striking. And, if there are standards and

rigid laws, I haven’t learned them. I’ve caught sailfish on a plastic worm rigged for largemouth bass and another one on a cigar. My wife caught a sailfish deep jigging with a white bucktail. The key to success with artificial lures is not the baits you choose, but presentation. It has to look edible to a fish and trigger the desire to strike. Part of that presentation has to appear that the lure is trying to escape. All predators expect their next meal to try to get away from their jaws. No predator expects to be attacked by its prey. I can’t help but think about that trout on that memorable day. The untrained eye could not see that the fly floated just a hair differently when the fish sucked in the dry fly. Look for subtle differences in your retrieves and your catch ratio will become impressive. That should make you smile.

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6/19/17 3:35 PM


It’s Mahi Time Off Key Largo By CAM Staff

D

rop everything you’re doing right now. Go book a mahi trip out of the Upper Keys. Capt. Ross Early with Early Bird Fishing Charters said they are hammering dolphinfish right now, with piles of schoolie-sized mahi packed in around the weed lines and big gaffers and slammers showing up under the birds. Summertime is all about mahi off the Atlantic side of Key Largo. Really, the bite stretches all the way south through the Keys, but it’s hard to beat Largo down through Islamorada for ease of access. The Upper Keys are close enough for a day trip from the south Florida mainland. Capt. Ross said the bite usually ramps up in May and lasts into September or October most years as the mahi migrate down through the Keys. A typical day begins early, with a quick stop inside the reef line to

catch bait with a net or sabiki before heading offshore with a tank full of cigar minnows and ballyhoo. The destination is the weed line that drifts in the current offshore. Capt. Ross said the run to the fishing grounds can be as short as 8 miles, and he fishes in anywhere from 300 to 1,000 feet of water. But the depth doesn’t really matter, because the fish are near the surface feeding on forage that congregates around the weeds. He’ll start by searching, trolling with lures and dead ballyhoo to find the fish. When that first rod goes down is when the real action starts. It’s a scramble to clear all the trolling lines, because that first fish typically brings other fish with it. Everyone on deck grabs a 20-pound spinning outfit to pitch chunk bonita, squid, live baits, or whatever to dolphin that are schooled up and feeding. “It can become organized chaos,” Ross said. “There are fish all around the boat, and you want to catch as many as you can, while you can, because it can turn off as fast as it turned on.” Generally, this blast of action consists of 6- to 10-pound schoolie-sized mahi with fillets perfect for the dinner plate. The 40- and 50-pound slammers are a little more solitary. “I’m always on the binoculars looking for birds,” Ross said. “I’m looking for frigates and yellow-billed terns. They’re our eye in the sky.” Three or four birds in one spot hovering or picking at the weeds indicate there are fish below pushing bait to the surface. Capt. Ross will climb into the tower of his 45-foot Custom Carolina, Early Bird, to look for fish and steer the boat on collision course with them. Packs of three or four big mahi will be moving southwesterly this time of year, and the trick is to get out in front of them. With Ross spotting fish and shouting direction to the anglers below, casting live baits accurately will usually lead to an incredible rush when a big slammer ties into a 20-pound spinning rig. It’s the kind of thing one must experience to understand. And who knows, you might encounter blackfin and skipjack tuna, sailfish, wahoo and the occasional marlin, as well. Book your trip with Capt. Ross Early and Early Bird Fishing Charters by calling 305-942-3618 or emailing ross@fishearlybird.com. Check out their website at www.fishearlybird.com.

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Our stars come out at night.

From bridges teeming with tarpon and snook to swordfish prowling down deep, the night fishing in Key Largo is out of this world. In fact, it’s right up there with the daytime fishing, which is nothing short of stellar. fla-keys.com/keylargo 1.800.822.1088 COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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SOUTHWEST FLORIDA

By Will Robinson

F

or decades anglers have used an array of teasing techniques to attract fish. Bluewater anglers pull a variety of dredges, daisy chains and other fish attracting, commotion-creating devices to find fish. Others have been dragging hookless baits in order to coax a hot fish within casting distance for fly fishermen, and now nearshore anglers are discovering how effective these tactics can be. In the past, inshore anglers might have thrown handfuls of stunned bait overboard in hopes of starting a feeding frenzy, a proven

technique but not for all situations. Consider needing to cover a vast amount of water to find roaming fish or fishing an area that is already full of bait. This method could be less successful than a simple bait and switch. Arguably, if you are a live bait fisherman or just looking to catch fish yourself, you would not go hookless. But perhaps you are trying to get someone their first fish on their own or trying to locate fish for fly fishermen. In these cases, the art of the tease is key. There are two basic techniques, one uses live bait, the other artificial. Both are effective and fun for both the teaser and angler. When you need to cover mass amounts of water, slow trolling a live bait can be a great way to find fish. The rig is simple, a short loop of Dacron run though a bait’s nostrils and attached to a snap. Above the snap a 4-foot piece of heavy mono is attached to a 3- to 4-inch float and then attached to a rod’s main line. The snap makes changing the teaser bait quick and easy, and the float helps keep track of the bait as well as giving the angler an easy-to-see target. The person working the teaser needs to be alert and ready for fast closing fish. The idea is to keep the bait just ahead of the predator and not allow an easy meal. Spinning and high-speed trolling reels work very well for this. Using topwater plugs is also a great teaser. Striper guides employ this technique with great success to pull unseen fish to the surface and hot fish out of massive schools of bait. The technique is simple; use the topwater to create a commotion and bring feeding fish closer to the boat. Many guides remove the hooks. Others feel that bending them closed gives the lure better action with the additional weight. Work the teaser fast and loud to cover a lot of water in a short time. When a hungry fish appears, it’s a blast to try to keep the bait away while the angler makes a presentation. Obviously, catching fish is the ultimate reason we hit the water, but teasing fish into a frenzy is a huge rush and tons of fun for both the teaser and the angler. Will Robinson is a seasoned tournament angler and has been writing about fishing for nearly two decades.

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By Paul Lebowitz

W

hen it comes to fishing accessories, nothing is as indispensable as a tackle-management system that fits in the storage well behind the seat on most any kayak. Back in the day, these were usually crafted out of venerable milk crates, with sections of PVC tubing zip-tied into each corner for use as rod holders. Some kayak anglers continue to use them, but increasingly, they have been supplanted by purpose-designed accessories that come fully featured. Here are a few things to look for if you’re in the market for a kayak tackle-management system. First, ask yourself how many rod holders it has. Most have three at a minimum, with the ability to add extras. The best crates come predrilled to accept them for nearly tool-free installation. Rod retention shock cords are a nice bonus. The ability to accept additional accessories such as tackle bins, camera booms and cup holders is another plus. Many crates are designed to be tied-down using the shock cords that come outfitted on most kayaks. Non-stretch webbing tie-downs are a more secure option. A cover, whether integrated or an accessory, is another good feature. While not every kayak angler will need the option, the ability to easily disassemble and pack the crate flat is a nice touch. It can come in handy for kayak anglers who travel by jet to distant fishing spots. There are great crates out there–go get one.

Coastal Angler Magazine to Offer the Destin/Pensacola Franchise Territory for Sale By CAM Staff

W

ith franchise locations currently throughout Florida, Coastal Angler Magazine seeks to ensure its total Florida market coverage by locating a new franchisee for the recently closed “Panhandle” territory. Ideal candidates for this wonderful franchise location will have a passion for the outdoors, a strong work ethic and a minimum of two years sales or business ownership experience. Local residence in the Destin/Pensacola area, while not required, will enter into the franchise approval process. Current franchisees enjoy the ability to control their own time and, to a great extent, their own incomes while being actively involved in the fishing industry as the publisher of the local edition of the magazine. With 40 locations throughout the U.S., and 17 other established Florida franchise territories, you can be assured that the training and support available through Coastal Angler Magazine’s franchise operations can enable individuals with no prior publishing experience to successfully maintain their local editions of the magazine. According to Editor In Chief Ben Martin, “With over 9 years experience in developing this unique franchising publishing model, our training and systems have created a nearly turn-key business opportunity for the outdoor enthusiast.” If you or someone you know is interested in owning your own business and being involved in the outdoor industry, contact Coastal Angler Magazine’s Corporate Office for more details on the Destin/Panhandle franchise opportunity. This exceptional Florida franchise territory will not be on the market for very long. If you have ever considered owning a Florida-based Coastal Angler Magazine franchise I encourage you to make your inquiry soon. For an application, visit www.coastalanglermagazine.com.

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Be Your Own Boss. If you love the outdoors and the Fishing Industry, you owe it to yourself to check out this new Franchise Opportunity with Coastal Angler Magazine. Now you can be in business for yourself...but not by yourself.

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For more information on this and other locations contact Editor in Chief Ben Martin at 888-800-9794

or email info@coastalanglermagazine.com

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6/19/17 3:36 PM


31 Days of

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6/19/17 1:35 4:02PM PM 6/15/17


TIPS FROM A PRO

MID-SUMMER BASS FISHING

I

BRANDON LESTER

grew up fishing lakes well-known for large schools of bass spending the summer months offshore. When we get to mid-summer and the water temperature starts hitting 80 degrees, it is safe bet that fish are going to be on offshore structure like ledges, humps and drop offs. I start looking on main-lake areas, on the lower half of the lake from the dam, where most good summer ledges are on the lakes I fish. Using the mapping on my Raymarine electronics, I search for places that top out from 12 to 20 feet and drop down to anywhere from 50 to 60 feet. Bass will start heading out there when the water gets to 70 degrees and at 80 they will definitely be out there. They spawn with a water temperature of 62 to 64, so as the water warms they will be headed that way. When the water is 80 degrees, the fish in the lake that move (some stay shallow all year) will be out there. The biggest deal is finding the depth range of the fish. When they first get out to offshore structure, they like 12 to 17 feet. As they stay longer— it could be weeks or a month—they will then move deeper, from 18 to 25 feet, maybe even as deep as 30 feet. To find the depth range of the fish, I will graph and look for the bait and then the fish. Usually I can see the fish on my Raymarine units, but I will often fish around a big school of bait in case the bass are hiding right under the thick bait. If I don’t see bait or bass, I won’t make a cast. Electronics are too good these days to fish places just because there were fish there at one point in the past. Gear To Use Offshore I always start with a moving bait, such as a deep-diving crankbait, to see if I can get the fish fired up. The biggest ones in the school will bite a crankbait. I like a Strike King 6XD and 8XD fished on a MHX CB907 cranking rod that I built myself with supplies

from Mud Hole. I always put new Mustad hooks on the baits. #2 KVD Triple Grip trebles are my preference. For line I use 10- to 12-lb. Vicious Fluorocarbon for the 6XD and 15- to 17-lb. on the 8XD. I like a slower 5:4:1 gear ratio reel to help them dive to their deepest depths. When those fish start grouping up out on the ledges, you can really have a lot of fun. Hundred-fish days are possible on the Tennessee River lakes, and I get excited just thinking about it. When that water temp gets close to 80, it is time to get out deep and get healthy in a hurry come tournament day.

Get more tips from Lester at

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WWW.COASTALANGLERMAG.COM/FORT-MYERS • FORT MYERS BEACH THROUGH CHARLOTTE HARBOR • JULY 2017

JULY SNOOK AND REDFISH By Capt. Terry Fisher

I

t is that time of year, or the beginning, when huge numbers of big snook and bigger redfish (‘Reds’) move into the back waters of Pine Island Sound and other secluded estuaries north and south to feed and spawn. They are aggressively eating shrimps, crabs and baitfish. Big snook will also be found just off of the beaches of the outer islands of Sanibel, Captiva, North Captiva, Cayo Costa. This scenario plays out all the way north to Tampa Bay and south of Naples. Areas include, but are not limited to, Bull and Turtle Bays (northwestern area of Charlotte Harbor), the eastern areas of Charlotte Harbor (along the sand bar of Punta Gorda), Matlacha Pass, south to Estero Bay and the Everglades. Every day in July (weather permitting) should offer good opportunity for a ‘fish of a lifetime’ to anglers that target the abovementioned game fish. I believe a few of the most effective strategies and tactics are as follows. 1) Work the top half of the incoming and outgoing tides. I prefer to fish for Snook on an outgoing tide and ‘Reds’ on the incoming tides. 2) When possible, fish the higher tides of the month and during both new and full moon phases. 3) Do not sit in one spot too long. Move around (quietly) to different locations until you find the game fish. Work points of islands, fish in and around ‘dead’ wood. Fish a presentation very close to or under mangroves. If pinfish and mangrove snappers are biting, move on, as it is unlikely that big snook or ‘reds’ are at that location. 4) Fish the windward side of islands, keys and structure when possible. 5) ‘Free’ line live pilchards and threadfins for best snook results. I like to use circle hooks, but ‘J’ hooks are just as good. Use sizes 1/0 to 3/0 depending on the size of the bait (not the fish you hope to catch). The bait needs to have a natural presentation and oversized hooks will defeat this purpose. Large shrimp, crabs, cut

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pinfish or cut ladyfish should produce ‘reds’. If large (jumbo) size shrimps are available in the waters you fish, that is likely to be the ‘bait of choice’. Otherwise, try the other baits mentioned above. However, regardless of the bait, Redfish presentations should be placed on the seabed or suspended under a cork. Not ‘sexy’, but very effective. 6) Artificial baits such as ‘weed-less soft plastics, twitch, top water, spoons and crank baits can all be effective, but usually not as effective as live bait. 7) Re-visit previous stops at different stages of the incoming and outgoing tides (the fish simply may not have arrived at that time). Over periods of time fish will relocate (if not more than a few yards) given a number of variables and changes in the areas habitat, including, the amount of fishing pressure, changes in structure (dead wood and oyster clusters, etc.) sea-grasses (amounts of and types) and cover (mangroves). Other factors include wind speed, wind direction, water level and water clarity. I am constantly looking for new ‘haunts’ that hold snook and ‘reds’. Recently, my 1st Mate Vicki, accompanied me on a trip to seek out new, productive locations. She has not fished much this year and was somewhat apprehensive as to her ability to make good presentations (casting) close to the mangroves. We worked the top half of the incoming tide. She fished on the bottom with a 1/4 oz. Strike King Jig Head with shrimp a jumbo shrimp. She used a weighted jig so that the strong, incoming current would not move her presentation from under or near the mangrove roots (where most fish swim or lie in ambush). I fished a ‘cork’ with a suspended, weighted jig, allowing it to drift with the current, along the mangrove roots. Shortly after arriving at the first ‘spot’, I landed a decent size redfish and a couple of small snook. I was on the bow of the boat, looking back and noticed that Vicki was struggling with her casting. Too many miscues into and short of mangroves prompted me to move several yards to another location so as to let things settle down a bit before trying the ‘spot’ again. Thirty minutes or so later, we returned to the original location where I had seen and heard fish feeding deep in mangrove roots. I suggested to Vicki to place her bait deep into a specific opening. Within a minute or so, her Shimano 3000 series, spinning reel was screaming out 10lb. test braid deeper into the mangroves. She was doing everything she could to turn the head of her 38” ‘monster’

female snook. Fortunately, we were using 40lb. test Seaguar, Fluorocarbon. I stood on the bow in amazement as to how fast and far back into the trees, this huge fish swam. I thought that Vicki had no chance of getting it out. The water was shallow and with every head turn, the noise and splashing water was characteristic of a ‘dolphin’ feed. It took all of the strength Vicki had to hold the light tackle rod and continue to ‘reel’, at every opportunity bringing the fish toward the fringe of the mangrove line. I figured at any moment the line would snag and break or the fish would wrap around a root. (Over the years, I have had many experienced anglers on board, but few good enough to maintain the required composure and intensity to overcome the many obstacles required to land a ‘fish of a lifetime’). However, Vicki did not over analyze the situation, but took the ‘hand’ she was dealt and kept the heat on! Finally, I came to my senses and realized that she might actually pull this feat off. I raised the Power Poles, put the trolling motor in fast-forward and told her to ‘hold on’, while the boat helped bring the fish into a clearing. Two or three minutes later we boated, measured and released unharmed, her ‘monster’ snook. Great Job Honey!

This is Captain Terry Fisher of Fish Face Charters wishing everyone tighter lines. I am available for charters by calling me direct at 239-357-6829 or by emailing me at fishfacecharters@yahoo.com. I am also available as ‘Captain for Hire’ (by the hour) on your vessel for safety and navigational training, fishing techniques and fishing locations that will improve your catch! Check out my website at www.fishfacecharters.com for more information and at www.goboatingflorida for local fishing reports.

6/18/2017 2:50:18 PM


2 FORT MYERS | JULY 2017 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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GULF & INTRACOASTAL FISHING

FISHIN’ FRANK

M

y mom and dad asked me to help find my nephews a big fish to fight and I right away started thinking about the mouth of the Myakka River. One of my favorite places for big fish. Now funny thing is, there I average about 4 to 5-foot fish, not quite as large as farther down in the Harbor, but just right for younger people with little or no experience fighting big fish. But the weather gods had other plans and there just was not time to go that far. So, looking at the building weather, we stopped at marker #2, out in front of Alligator Bay. The tide was coming in, so we anchored up on the west side, about 200 yards away from the marker and as always, I cast out a bobber line and my luck was good. The bobber was pointing right at the marker. I mean I tested the wind and used my ancient sea lore to perfectly position the boat so the chum would flow right at the marker. Now there are two or three reasons not to be closer to the marker. #1- boat traffic- just when the fish, shark or cobia, would be interested in the bait, a boat would chase them off. The second reason is that people cast net there for bait all day, on and off, so with the nets crashing down on the water, again spooking my larger fish. And #3, it is not fair to others to take up room that close to where they want to get bait so they can go fishing. And to be truthful, that is what the chum is for. It takes about

30 minutes or so for the chum to start working on the bait fish by the marker and my regular frozen chum, which come already in the bag or a box, whatever you like, will pull the bait, at least some of it, from the marker over towards my boat. Combine the chum smell in the water and a school of bait fish feeding on the chum line, that is the recipe for Big Fish on. So, not knowing if it would be sharks or cobia or what, I went back to my steel leader, the bleeding ones from AFW, and put out a set bobber line, a free line and a sinker rig. Now I had a larger spinning rod with 50-pound braid on it, so I took a chance and free lined a sardine on that line and the other rods I put on the bobber with a half of a pilchard, on the free line I placed a whole pilchard, but cut a slice from the back of the bait under the tail up into the belly cavity, to release a bit more smell.

To see how many fish Frank, Ethan, and Jesse catch and how they caught them, go to: https:// coastalanglermag.com/fort-myers/ fishing-reports/ Well, have fun out there and good luck! Fishin Frank

Reel-Ality Sportfishing Charters Capt. Larry Conley 4/6/8 hr trips, Inshore & Offshore, Kid friendly

239.980.3880 www.reel-alitysportfishing.com

FORT MYERS

fishfacecharters@yahoo.com 239-357-6829

Fishin’ Franks Bait & Tackle 4425-D Tamiami Trail Charlotte Harbor FL 33980 941-625-3888 - Fishin’ Franks Tackle Shop 14531 N. Cleveland Ave. Ft. Myers, 33903 239-634-1043 COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JULY 2017 | FORT MYERS 3

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6/18/2017 2:50:20 PM


Ladies SW Florida Fishing By: Vicki Fisher

I

t’s for

hard me to believe that we are already in the month of July and half way through the summer months, here in SW Florida! The children are out of school for the summer and many of my neighborhood ‘fishing friends’ come daily on their bikes to fish by our bridge. They have rigged up their bikes with PVC pipe to hold their rods! We have a set of brothers that visit daily and they are learning to fly fish and my husband loves watching and teaching them the technique and art of catching on a fly! Summer fishing is fantastic as many species are in our canals, enjoying the glass minnows and taking refuge under the docks during the heat of the day. I’ve noticed more and

more shoreline fishermen and ladies with the children, enjoying the sport together and making fun family memories. It really doesn’t take much to spend time together and make lasting memories when it comes to fishing. With our fishing charter business, there are so many times that we meet people that have gone out and purchased at least one, if not two, tackle boxes full of ‘stuff ’ that they thought necessary to catch a nice fish. We make our living on one small box. I think it is all relevant to where you plan to do your fishing, whether it be from the shoreline, the back country on a vessel, or offshore. The basics needed are a rod and reel or an old-fashioned cane pole, depending on the presentation and location of where you’re fishing. It’s been many years since I’ve fished with a cane pole, but I have seen many people using them when fishing for mullet

along the shoreline. We have put together a basic list of equipment needed for our clients and I would be happy to share that with you if you contact me. I can be reached at fishfacecharters@yahoo.com or (239) 471-7332. Summertime is also a great time to get out with the family and enjoy the many waterside restaurants we have here in our area. At dinnertime, you may get to watch dolphin or manatee having their evening meal and most places are not crazy busy like they are during the winter months, when we have so many visitors. Many accessible by boat and most offer outside dining along the water’s edge, so you can watch the abundant salt life firsthand. A few of my local favorites are Woody’s Waterside Grill in St. James City, Miceli’s in Matlacha, The Boat House at the Cape Coral Yacht Club, Fathom’s at Cape Harbor and Coconut Jack’s in

Bonita Springs. All have extensive menus and are children friendly. This is First Mate Vicki Fisher, wishing you all a happy and safe Fourth of July Holiday. Fire up the grill and enjoy your fresh catch as you celebrate our country’s independence! God Bless America! This is First Mate Vicki Fisher, of Fish Face Charters, LLC., sending you warm sunshine and colorful gardens in the coming month! If I can be of assistance please do not hesitate to call me at (727) 534-9071 or email fishfacecharters@yahoo.com.

Let me know how I can assist you!

WATERFRONT REAL ESTATE SPECIALIST Tiffany Packard, Realtor® 239.989.3198 Anglers & Cruisers: Live The Florida Dream Build or Buy, and go Boating!

1942 SW 2nd Place $239,900 Centrally Located Waterfront Home on Triple Lot!

White sandy beaches and world class fishing from your back yard!

1208 SE 5th Terrace – REDUCED to $315,000 Waterfront Pool Home w/Access to Miles of Freshwater

Tiffany@MiloffAubuchonRealty.com | 239.989.3198 4 FORT MYERS | JULY 2017 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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Barracudas

Voted BEST Bait & Tackle shop on the Island

By: Capt. James Marko

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omma says they’re mad because they got all them teeth and no toothbrush!” A great man named Bobby Boucher aka Water Boy once spoke these words about an alligator; well my friends I’m here to tell you about the Barracuda. Just a couple miles off of our beautiful Gulf Coast you can find these toothy critters and they are quite the catch. People have many different methods when it comes to targeting Barracuda from trolling noodles to live bait, I prefer trolling plugs. The reason I prefer them is because of the variety of other species you can also catch by trolling plugs. Just look for structure offshore or any of our local reefs. Once you think you’ve found them put you’re plugs or tubes out about 40-60 yards and drive around them about 5-7 miles per hour. You will know when you get hooked up with one of these guys because you’re in for an acrobatic show. They launch out of the water ambushing the lure with all their might; Barracuda rely on surprise tactics in order to catch their prey. Once you’ve got them hooked you’re in for some of the quickest runs and line screams you’ve never heard. Barracudas are able to swim 24 miles per hour plus! They’re so territorial and fast that they’ve been known to be act aggressively towards people diving or snorkeling in tropical waters. Fortunately for us, they do not have much endurance, so don’t expect a very long fight. Although,

D&D MATLACHA

if fought on light tackle this fish would take 10 minutes to reel in. Now for the fun part, once you get them next to the boat you’ll admire their many teeth and big eyeballs. They need impeccable eye sight to hone in on their prey at such high speeds. So, what do you get with big teeth, incredible speed, and superb vision? An amazing performance predator and a great fighting fish. Please remember to respect the fish when caught. Wear protective gloves and have a de-hooker ready. I definitely don’t want anyone blaming me for accidental bites! If I had to choose a complete set-up to use for the Barracuda I would go with the Okuma RTX-80 with an 8ft rod trolling the Savage Gear Alien Ell lure. Remember to respect our waters and the creatures that live in it. Want to see our daily catches check out our Facebook/ Instagram

This is Captain James Marko wishing you a “day at the office” as great as mine! I am available for charters by calling 239-443-9687, on Facebook at Facebook.com/ GoliathMarko, and through my through website Goliathfishing.com.

BAIT & TACKLE

The BIGGEST SHRIMP On Pine Island!

Great selection of live bait | frozen bait | artificial lures hooks | bait storage | cast nets fishing line | weights | refreshments

Come in and get the newest, affordable Ryobi Reels on the market Turbo 20000 Turbo 20000 Super Smooth Hi-Strength Two-Speed Spinning Reel - Weighs only 2-lbs!

Arctica Artica Spinning Reels - Sizes 4000/6000 High Power, High Grade Anti-Corrosive Stainless Steel with 6 Ball Bearings Oasys Oasis Spinning Reels - Sizes 2000-8000 Light Weight, Strong, & Smooth 3922 Pine Island Road Matlacha, FL 33993 www.PineIslandBait.com

Store Hours: 6am-9pm Open Everyday 239-282-9122

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JULY 2017 | FORT MYERS 5

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Summer Fishing By: Capt. Sam O’Briant

Please visit our website for details: ArcherAirboatTours.com ONLY local airboat rides, tours and fishing trips available

Nate Maynard 239.699.1129 maynardexcursions@gmail.com www.maynardcharterstours.com

DISCOUNT FOR MILITARY AND FIRST RESPONDERS

Avoid Lawn Fertilization During Early Seasonal Rainfall By: John Cassani, Waterkeeper

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he early seasonal rains often bring the most nutrients and pollutants to local waters as stormwater runoff. This is especially relevant following a long drought, as we have had this dry season. The 90/10 rule stemmed from research that 90 percent of the pollutants typically enter receiving waters from the first half inch or 10 percent of the runoff. If the

first flush of rain is inadequately treated then excess nutrients and other pollutants will end up in local rivers and bays. These pollutants are a primary cause of toxic algae blooms that often manifest as fish kills or extending red tide events. Residents should avoid fertilizing their lawns at this time and comply with local fertilizer “black-out” ordinances.

To report pollution, algae blooms, fish kills or other pollution issues, call the Calusa Waterkeeper Hotline at 239-444-8584.

passes, especially the sea wall at South Seas Plantation. Drift along with the tide and fit in with the other boats.  If unfamiliar with fishing this area, hold back and watch for a few minutes.  It does not take a rocket scientist to figure it out.  Redfish seem to be holding in the norther end of Pine Island Sound if you can find them.  I would look along the east bank just north of Pineland and along Burnt Store Bar.  Or maybe even Two Pines.  Even though shrimp and spoons can be used, cut bait is probably your best bet followed maybe by minnows.  You may have a hard time finding one in the slot size, most seem to be running a bit on the larger size.  Here as always, if you find a school, do not cast Chase and a friend with a nice catch! in the middle of them.  Throw beyond and bring your bait back.  If ell the hot days of summer the school spooks, watch where it are upon us.  All our goes.  It generally does not move northern friends think it is so hot far. down here that they have to stay  Kids have been out of school up north.  That is good for us.  maybe for a month and probably We will not tell them we have an getting tired, maybe, of their average temperature of 93 while electronic devises.  Why not try they swelter in the 90’s and 100’s.  another diversion – fishing – with So, what are the fish doing this them.  If you start early and make month?   it fun, you will have a pal for life.  If This month you can look for it is not fun, you will lose them on large snook to be cruising the surf your next trip.  If they do not want line of the outer islands.  If you to fish the whole time let them do watch what we call our Gulf waves, whatever they want, they are with you will probably see one or two you and you can enjoy them. as you walk the beach.  Then you   We are in the heat of may even run into a large school thunderstorm season.  Be sure of yearling snook.  I have seen you know where on the water schools of up to 50 hanging out you are and where the nearest in the slews formed between the safe harbor is.  Getting caught in sand bars and shore. If you have a thunderstorm is not fun.  Enjoy live minnows with you or a cast the kids they will be gone soon net to catch some, they will work and keep your lines tight. best.  Of course, you can always try a spoon or plug or even shrimp Capt. Sam is a local licensed as a backup.  All of these will work guide for hire who may be but minnows work best on snook. reached at 239-994-1495 or Another place to look for snook captainobriant@gmail.com is in and around the edges of the

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Paddlin’ & Fishin’ Bait and Tackle Shops By: Dan Carns

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f you’re new to fishing or new to an area it’s imperative that you find a bait and tackle shop. Often these are two different places, one for bait and the other for tackle. If you walk into a tackle shop and no one asks if they can help or how the fishing has been, then walk out and find a shop that understands that you didn’t walk in there by mistake! This place should be your go-to spot for gear, information, and help with your questions. Like me, you may end up with two or three shops. While it’s tempting to go to a big-box shop, you won’t get what I call a generational perspective of local conditions and trends. My favorite tackle shop is in North Fort Myers, this place is packed to the rafters with everything I need and has several generations of anglers behind the counter that once engaged, will gladly share their advice and pro tips. It may take a few trips to develop a rapport with the staff of any shop, so return several times, ask questions and don’t be shy. Prices are going to vary from shop to shop, so find a price point you can live with, but remember these are local stores supporting families, the local economy, and that extra dollar on the price of a lure could be the difference between staying open or closing up shop. Pine Island Rd. in Cape Coral is home to another no frills, all business kind of store that carries great chum, large selection

of lures and like my favorite shop does rod and reel repair. My two favorite bait shops specialize in live bait, one opens very early and the other is open 24/7 and will even let me reserve bait for those mornings that I have clients and must have live bait. Here in beautiful Matlacha is a simple one room bait shop that carries great shrimp at a reasonable price and when you order 50 or 100 shrimp the count is always over and sometimes by dozens! They also carry pinfish and pass crabs from time to time. I often launch out of Pine Island and when I need to reserve bait, I call the day before and when I arrive before dawn, their bait truck is delivering fresh bait, even before the other shops are open. Please remember to tip your bait guys and gals as they are up just as early as you, possibly earlier, and are the start of a successful day on the water. If you tip, you WILL notice that your bait counts will start to go up! So, ask around, find and support those shops that understand that without you they may not survive. Of course, if you are launching with us at Gulf Coast Kayak we have a selection of locally useful gear and knowledge!

• Kayaks & Paddleboards • Fishing Charters • Rentals & Lessons • Guided Eco Tours

• Kayak Fishing Trips • Waterfront Retail location • Dolphin & Manatee Tours • Families Welcome

239-283-1125 www.GulfCoastKayak.com 4120 Pine Island Rd NW Matlacha, FL 33993

MATLACHA

3771 Palm Beach Blvd. Ft. Myers, FL (239) 694-2185

Fishman Dan Gulf Coast Kayak, 4120 Pine Island Rd NW, Matlacha, FL 33993 Phone: 239-283-1125

8 FORT MYERS | JULY 2017 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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FINALLY, FINALLY, FINALLY...

BAY BOAT WITH FAMILY AND SAFETY IN MIND A 24 FOOT PREMIUM

239-574-7800 www.ActionCraft.com

Custom produced, high quality boats, unlike cookie-cutter boats at the dealers in Fort Myers.

COMPARE! COMPARE! COMPARE! to the Yellowfin 24 to the Pathfinder 24 to the Ranger 25

FACTORY DIRECT PRICING Don't let an unexpected accident or illness leave your family fishing for answers. If you're not happy with the returns on your IRA, 401k, Savings, or CD's, call us today and we'll show you a better way!

Fort Myers 239-985-4277

Port Charlotte 941-206-2505

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JULY 2017 | FORT MYERS 9

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GOLD

Rules of the Road for Boaters

MINER

PAWN

By Dave Sully,

Lee County Sheriff ’s VOICE Volunteer

CALL: 656-4653

New n! o o L cati

Next Amoreto Pizza

Photo courtesy of LCSO.

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very popular spot for boats to congregate is the shallow water south of the Ft. Myers pier. Craft of all sizes and shapes, from large cruisers to fast boats, to party barges, to center consoles, and other configurations, anchor along the shoreline where the occupants relax, visit, swim, and people watch, while enjoying themselves on the water. In addition, there is plenty of activity generated by the para sail boats and the omnipresent PWCs, which folks can rent from several companies on the beach. All things being equal, everyone has a good time. The Lee County Sheriff ’s Marine Unit usually has a presence in the area to monitor activity to make sure that things go smoothly in a very busy place. However, whenever there is a concentration of people, there is the potential for problems. There are things to remember when operating in close quarters. Long anchor lines make navigating through the area a challenge, especially for larger craft. Avoiding people wading around anchored boats, who may not be aware of the potential hazard, is another concern. PWCs weaving through the anchored fleet can also pose a threat to safety. Of particular concern

during busy periods is the overloading of boats at anchor by funseekers. There have been instances where boats have actually flipped over when crammed with people, creating an obvious threat to life and limb. All of the above can become even more dangerous when the activity is compounded by the use of alcoholic beverages, often to excess and, unfortunately, by minors, which is, of course, illegal. Underage drinking is particularly dangerous, with a number of cases involving unconscious teens occurring every year. These instances are potentially more dangerous because accessing the victims on the water can be difficult and time-consuming. The Marine Unit is especially mindful of the danger of underage drinking and adroitly enforces the statutes for the benefit of all. The area off of Ft. Myers Beach has always been a great place for boaters to have fun. Avoiding excesses and being careful will also make it safe. Go to www.coastalanglermag.com/ fort-myers to read the complete version of the article.

10 FORT MYERS | JULY 2017 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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6/18/2017 2:50:26 PM


Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail By: Mike Hammond

Ben fishing and paddling

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hen I asked my family which Calusa Blueway destination I should write about his month, my son shouted, “Lovers Key!” For many reasons, it is one of his favorite spots and with beach traffic currently as low as we can hope for, it’s a great time to rediscover Lovers Key. There are several good places to launch. At the southeast base of the San Carlos Pass Bridge is a parking lot with access to a narrow strip of beach. A little further east (just past the Lovers Key Resort entrance) is another small lot on the left with access to the bay. Another popular launch spot is located at a small beach, across the road from Dog Beach at the southern tip, but beware of very strong currents in the passes. While these launches are free or inexpensive, I prefer the “official” paddlecraft launch inside the park. Enter through the Gulf side entrance ($8 per vehicle fee) and follow the road to the concessions building. Lovers Key Adventures has several types of paddlecraft available to rent and guided tours. If you have your own equipment, just follow the road right to the launch. Even during Spring Break, we were able to pull up to the launch and unload easily without having to dodge other paddlers. The nearby bathroom is a nice amenity, and manatees often make an appearance just a few feet from the launch. I’ve witnessed one bump my son’s kayak around with its nose while I was taking out

my board. It may be tempting, but please do not pet, feed, or offer water to the manatees. In addition to being potentially harmful to them, it is illegal. From the launch, you can paddle a 2.5-mile marked trail winding into the center of Black Island. Just short of the one-mile mark, you’ll find breaks in the mangroves which lead to a small bay running parallel to Estero Blvd. Upon entering this little bay, you are leaving the No Motor Zone. It is more exposed to the wind, but this shallow bay is still a nice place to relax, fish, and find interesting marine life. You can easily spend a couple hours relaxing there. No agenda needed. Just let Southwest Florida happen. I’m pretty sure that’s why it is one of my wife’s favorite paddles. When returning to the parking area, I generally forgo the actual ramp and use one of the small beaches by the pavilions to take out. The ramp gets busier as the day goes on and there is plenty of grass and shade by the alternative landing. Kids can enjoy their postpaddle snack under the pavilion, as adults schlep equipment to the vehicles. While you will surely encounter many other paddlers, Lovers Key is a fun and easy paddle the whole family can enjoy.

BOAT SALES & REPAIRS OUTBOARD ENGINES NUCANOE STORE COME SEE OUR LARGE SELECTION OF

MARINE PARTS & PRODUCTS

Licensed Captain & Naturalist: • Inshore • Nearshore • Wreck/Reef Fishing • Nature Tours w/ detail Narration

For a complete schedule and registration information, please go to: https://paddleguru.com/races/ BattleontheBlueway2017 Mike Hammond is based in Fort Myers, Florida, and is a staff member at Lee County Parks & Recreation. He is the Calusa Blueway coordinator for Lee County.

My son Ben and a manatee COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM | JULY 2017 | FORT MYERS 11

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A Reel Future By: Misty Wells

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Celebrating 45 Years in Business!

hat do Bill Dance, Jimmy Houston, Roland Martin & Mike Alstott all have in common? You guessed it – fishing! When we think of Bill, Jimmy or Roland, we think fishing show and television, and with Mike we may think of football. This is much better, they fish for “A Reel Future”, a local nonprofit organization that directs all their attention to kids in group foster care. “A Reel Future” was started 4 years ago, in Clearwater, Florida by two locals Misty Wells & Capt. Tommy LaRonge. They joined forces to take kids in group foster care fishing. “A Reel Future” has taken over 1000 kids in group foster care fishing and spent valuable time with them. “We are teaching them a positive outlet and alternative to some of the things they may be doing.” Capt. Tommy LaRonge grew up in foster care, so he knows firsthand that “teaching these kids and instilling some of the knowledge shared with me is life changing.” So where do Bill, Jimmy, Roland & Mike fit into all this? They support and fish with “A Reel Future”. These fishing legends flew to Tampa and took a trip with 20 lucky kids on the Double Eagle, out of Clearwater Marina, for a half day trip to catch grouper and grunts. Each year, the Alstott Family Foundation & Mike host our Christmas event. Mike takes over 50 kids fishing each December, lays out a big spread of food & gives all the kids gift cards for Christmas! When these kids find out who they are fishing with, they go crazy! So, does taking a kid fishing really matter - the answer is a resounding “Yes”. “I see a big change in just 4 hours with

these kids getting to experience something new and learning they can do something by themselves. Last month, Bass Pro in Tampa donated over 150 rods & reels to “A Reel Future” and the Clearwater High Fishing Club. We are hosting our 1st Annual “A Reel Future” Inshore Tournament the weekend of September 8th at the Marriott Waterside. Team sign-up includes: boat, captain, rods & reels, captain’s party, dinner, drinks, and with sponsors like Costa and Bass Pro, you know the prizes will be great! Did I mention you get to fish with a celebrity? A $25 donation takes 1 kid fishing and a donation of $250 sponsors a whole trip, so dust off your checkbook and let’s change some lives while having a little fun.

To learn more and sign up for the tournament, go to our website www.areelfuture.com Until next time, “Let’s Take It Outside”, Misty Wells. Misty Wells, Host of the National Radio & TV show “Let’s Take It Outside”, Outdoor Pro –Writer & Adventure Guide for Fishing & Hunting trips, co-founder of “A Reel Future” & Sponsor to Clearwater High Fishing Club. For show info or to be a guest go to www.mistywells.com

14 FORT MYERS | JULY 2017 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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Recommended

Local Bait & Tackle Shops D&D MATLACHA BAIT & TACKLE

3922 Pine Island Road • Matlacha, FL 33993 239-282-9122 • www.PineIslandBait.com

4839 Vincennes St Cape Coral, FL 33904 239-257-2446

405 NE Pine Island Rd Cape Coral, FL 33909 239-574-6950 • capetoolandtackle.com

4425-D Tamiami Trail • Charlotte Harbor, FL 33980 14531 N Cleveland Ave • North Fort Myers, FL 33903 941-625-3888 • fishinfranks.com

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Selling Your Boat By: Ron Gorka

Boat, RV & Trailer

Service, Sales & Storage

5149 Pine Island Road, 1/4 mile East of the 4 Way Stop at Pine Island Center

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adly, there comes a time in the life cycle of many cherished boats when circumstances dictate that it’s time to sell. While selling is not as simple as putting an ad in the paper and waiting until an eager buyer comes along with the cash, neither does it need to be a trauma-filled experience. Please note that these tips apply to smaller boats, say up to 24 or 25 feet, and not to vessels that should be handled by a yacht broker and require a marine survey. Step one of course, is making sure your boat is ready to sell. A motor that won’t start or runs rough are likely things that can be repaired inexpensively by a qualified marine mechanic. You really should have the boat in top running condition if you hope to maximize your selling price. Your boat needs to be as clean and polished as you can get it and, if you don’t have the time or energy, have it professionally detailed… money well spent as it will increase the value of your boat well beyond the small investment. If the boat has been bottom painted and the paint has deteriorated to the point where it has become unsightly, by all means have it recoated, first impressions mean a lot. What is it worth? Check the average selling price of your boat, motor and accessories by referencing the NADA book value on line: Google it! Also get a feel for

what similar boats are selling for in your area by checking Craiglist, E-Bay and local Facebook pages. Craigslist is almost a must for advertising locally and it’s free for the “Boats for Sale by Owner” category. Typically, there are local Facebook pages that welcome personal “For Sale” ads and some may be dedicated to boats and marine products. We here at Sunset Dreams offer an assist to sell program and can handle all aspects of marketing your boat. We have a full service marine facility offering experienced mechanical service, boat detailing, and professional bottom painting. We are well located on Pine Island Road where your boat will be on display to everyone entering or leaving Pine Island by land! We are used to dealing with all sorts of prospects from the “snow-birds”, that are new to boating, to the “tire kickers”, the “low-ballers”, the “con-artists” and most of all, the sincere buyers who are looking for a boat just like yours. Check our current inventory at our web site: www.sunsetdreams.com, send me an email at ron@sunsetdreams. com or call for details at 239 2834843. Better yet, stop in and get to know us, we’re at 5149 Pine Island Road ¼ mile East of the 4-way stop at Pine Island Center!

• Competitive rates • Secure facility under surveillance • Regulated 24 hour access for customers • Conveniently located near multiple boat ramps • Engine flush/wash down area

Services:

• Outboard Engine Service. • Re-Powers by Suzuki. • Power Pole Sales, Service, Installation. • Mechanical Repair & Maintenance. • Boat trailer repairs. • Boat Bottom Cleaning & Painting • Boat Detailing. • Boat & RV Storage • Consignment Sales • Stop by for a quote on the services you need. • We take pride in delivering high quality work. Hours: Mon-Fri 9am - 5pm

Phone: (239) 283-4843 Fax: (239) 282-8451 Sales: Ron@sunsetdreams.com Service: Mark@sunsetdreams.com

www.sunsetdreams.com Like us on Facebook: “Sunset Dreams”

16 FORT MYERS | JULY 2017 | COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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The Best Angler Photos From Southwest Florida!

L to R -Bro dy & Dou glas Roo t, Log an Haw kins w/ a rele ase d sno ok at D & D Mat lach a

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Merr ilee VanK amp en w/ her first red ever

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Courtesy of Fish Southwest Florida

Cour tesy of Fish Sout hwes t Flori da

Photos submitted courtesy of: Capt. Bart Marx Capt. James Marko Capt. Josh Roberts 17 FORT MYERS | JULY 2017 Capt. Larry Conley 0717_LOC_FtMyers.indd 17

Lan e W, 10y o with an upp er-s lot rele ase d

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Capt. Larry McGuire Capt. Mike Manis Capt. Neil Eisner COASTALANGLERMAG.COM Capt. Terry Fisher • THEANGLERMAG.COM

M ike H or ne r

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sn ap pe r

Send us a photo of your catch to: camftmyers@gmail.com - please include your name, location of where caught, type & size of fish and we’ll do our best to include you in our next edition

6/18/2017 2:50:38 PM


Charlotte Harbor

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nderstandably, this month begins a period where I prefer fishing early. The cooler morning water temperatures present the best opportunity to look for redfish and snook outside the cover of mangroves where they’ll spend most of the day as soon as the water temperatures rise with the sun. Overall, rainfall amounts factored in with tide help determine where I’ll look on any given day. For instance, if we’re getting consistent afternoon soakers, I like looking around tidal creek areas on an

By: Capt. Mike Manis

early morning outgoing tide. The east side of the harbor anywhere south of Ponce Park in Punta Gorda and all the way down to Matlacha can be good under this scenario. Moreover, that covers lots of real estate, so there’s enough room for everyone to explore. The west wall and Turtle Bay also have quite a few tidal creek areas that can fish well under these circumstances. If I’m out and we haven’t had a whole lot of rain, I like to look around flats adjacent to mangrove shorelines that are in close proximity to the Intracoastal Waterway. Here, I’ll generally load at the Placida ramp and cover ground anywhere from outside Catfish Creek to all the way down to the Cabbage Key area in northern Pine Island Sound. This too, is a lot of ground and only a fraction can be covered in the limited time we have on any given morning before it gets too hot. This time of year, it’s not unusual to find yourself with calm, slick conditions and a flat that can be very visual. By this, I mean the mullet are very apparent, as well as pushes from both redfish and snook. You may not see the fish at first, but you may begin noticing single V

July in S.W. Florida

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e like to go in the boat to see the fireworks to celebrate our freedom. And to those that have served in our armed forces, Thank You! for your service. It is awesome to see all the people that have their personal celebrations around the area and from the water you can see 360 around you. It is also a great time of year to go fishing. In Charlotte Harbor, you could get your inshore slam- snook, red, and trout. To target

these species, fish the edges of the islands, sand holes, and grassflats in your area. This can be accomplished with artificials or live baits, depending on your style. The water is warm enough now to wade if you like, just have some protection from the stingrays. I use dive booties with the rubber soles that stay on if you get in the muck and don’t get shells and things in them. Lots of anglers have trolling motors and don’t deal with the muck these days. If you fish closer to the Gulf, there should be plenty of mangrove snapper to harvest for a fish fry. You can target them around docks and artificial reefs close to ICW. There are some natural ledges in the passes that you could drift too. Looking to the Gulf, there should be some tarpon still lurking along the beach in search of food. And a possible shark doing the same. To sharks, tarpon are just a big threadfin hearing. Easing out to the 50-foot mark you can find lane, mangrove snapper, porgies and white grunts. These are great table fare and when you find the larger ones, they really put up a good fight too.

wakes pushing off. Slow it down and some sight fishing opportunities may present themselves. It’s also the time you want to be on the poling platform and not running the trolling motor. Furthermore, don’t be surprised if you run into a few small blacktip sharks, as they’ll be cruising flats throughout the harbor. Off the flats, this is one of the best times of year to do some mangrove snapper fishing. Inside Boca Grande Pass in about 20 or 30 feet, up on the hill is a great place. Live bait or shrimp dropped to the bottom can provide some great fun. Inside the harbor, the Alligator Creek Reef is another good spot. Tarpon should also start grouping up in the upper harbor at the mouths of both the Peace and Myakka Rivers. The bridges are always good places to keep an eye on. In addition, the canal systems of both Port Charlotte and Punta Gorda hold small tarpon, as well as lots of mangrove snapper and some good-sized black drum. The perimeter canals are the best place to look. Until next month, good tides. Captain Michael Manis is a U.S.G.C. Licensed captain and has been teaching the sport of fly and light tackle angling since 2002. He lives in Punta Gorda, Florida and can be reached at www.puntagordaflycharters.com

By: Capt. Bart Marx

You may also find a keeper red grouper in these same areas too. With the electronics these days, it is getting easy to find new spots to fish, other than the artificial reefs. These tend to hold better fish and don’t get the pressure that artificial reefs get. I have also noticed there aren’t as many goliath at the smaller structure to bag your catch and shut things down for a while. There are barracudas to catch and eat in these waters too. Growing up here I was always told longer than your arm, they will do you harm, because as they get bigger they may have ciguatera. But in our area, we don’t have much coral. The fish that eat the coral get eaten by the bigger fish and I guess that builds up in the larger fish. We would wade fish to catch them, to have fresh fish for dinner, when we were camping in Big Pine Key. They do have teeth, so be aware of that mouth! They can be a little crazy when you get them out of the water. There may be some king mackerel still feeding on the schools of bait offshore. If you would like to go and target some of these fish call Capt. Bart Marx 941-979-6517 or e-mail me at captbart@alphaomegacharters. com And always remember singing drags and tight lines make me smile.

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Peace River – Charlotte Harbor

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Jordan Moya

y far the hardest decision to make during the summer months here in Southwest Florida has got to be what to fish for. With so many species available in the harbor, proper trip planning can ensure that you and your party have a great day on the water. Species such as tarpon, shark and Spanish mackerel are all found in the deeper holes in the harbor. When I plan my light tackle flats charters, I target snook and redfish

during the peak tide flows. I fish for species such as trout and snapper when the action tends to slow. The shallow flats have been very productive early in the morning, before the sun gets too high and really starts to heat things up. There have been plenty of juvenile tarpon on the flats. I have found the best way to target these guys is to locate fish by sight. Boat position is very important, try to position yourself with your trolling motor or push pole. A live sardine with a 1/0-3/0 circle hook depending on the size of bait. A small non-weighted float can be used to keep your bait from hiding in the grass. Also, a 30-40# fluorocarbon leader is necessary to keep their abrasive jaws from chewing your hook off. Snook fishing is very high on my list of fish to target during the summer months. Fishing has been excellent from the flats to some of the deeper creeks and canals. I have had some very productive charters lately with very good numbers

By: Capt. Dave Stephens

of snook. Some of which were in the 12-15# pound class and many more in the 5-10# range. Live freelined scaled sardines are my bait of choice this time of year. A 30-40# leader is recommended. When landing and handling fish, please be very gentle as summertime is when snook are spawning. Redfish have been very good on the higher tides around the mangroves. During the summer months, reds will be tucked way back in shadows around the mangrove roots. I found cut bait such as ladyfish or cutting the tails off scaled sardines to be very effective ways to get reds to bite. Speckled sea trout fishing has been very good on the deeper grass flats. Also, the mangrove snapper fishing has been very good in the deeper cuts along the mangroves and on the deeper shorelines. Structure such as docks is also a great place to locate fish. A small hook and light leader will help you to get more bites. Mangrove

snapper have very good eye sight. Please remember that it is summer time in Southwest Florida, so when you are out on your next boating adventure, keep an eye out for evening thunderstorms. These storms move in fast and normally have plenty of deadly lightning. If you are looking for a great day fishing on Charlotte Harbor give me a call or send me an email and we will customize a private charter that best fits your party’s needs. Capt. Dave Stephens, 941-916-5769, www.backbayxtremes.com

Tyler Moya

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Red Eye Safaris

SANSIBEL/CAPTIVA

By: Wayne Nichols

I

PUNTA GORDA/

CHARLOTTE HARBOR

20400 Veterans Blvd, Port Charlotte FL 33954 www.underwaterfishlight.com

t’s July, and it’s hot, humid, and wet all over! This time of year can be rough on a hunter down here in Florida. We have mosquitoes big enough to carry off a small child, clouds of nosee-ums that laugh at all kinds of bug repellents, and snakes moving all over the place. With the high humidity, unbearable heat, unpredictable weather, and rain storms out of nowhere, planning a hunting trip is a 50/50 chance at best, during daytime hours. That leads us to doing a lot of hunts after dark with thermal vision scopes and AR’s off swamp buggies and side by sides, and also out of the trucks. We cover a lot of ground on these types of hunts. Most of these hunts are not done in heavily wooded areas, like the normal hunts are, but more in wide open areas like private ranches or farmer’s fields. It’s simply amazing how much game you can spot after dark in a thermal scope. With the amount of destruction a group of hogs and varmit can do in a single night, the farmers welcome you to come help out! Normally, evening and night hunts are a bit more stable on weather patterns. Also after dark the temperature drops considerably compared to daytime and most animals are up and moving well throughout the night. We

mainly target hogs and coyotes on these hunts, but do varmit hunts as well (rabbits, raccoons, etc...) for a fun change of pace. Hunters take turns using the thermal geared rifles and we are also capable of filming the hunts directly through the scope thanks to some new technology and the guys over at Live It Upp Inc! These hunts are new this year and so far, all of them have been very successful. It only takes about a 5 minute tutorial on how to use the equipment and any level of hunter can use it with ease. As always we’re still doing alligator hunts year round, as well. Due to nesting season, we mainly target large alligators through the end of summer to ensure a good hatch rate and primarily harvest males. The goal here is maximum protection by the mother to her nest, if you kill the nesting female you have sealed the fate of every egg in the nest. We also take a break from gator hunting towards the end of the month and well into August, as baby gators begin hatching out, but that’s next month’s article topic! If you have alligators on your property and would like them captured alive, numbers managed, and/or relocated give me a call 863990-7650 or shoot me an email at waynenichols75@gmail.com, in some cases we actually PAY YOU to utilize our services!! Until next month y’all take care in this Florida heat.

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Chef Corey at The Dock at Crayton Cove Executive Chef Corey Heath

Naples, Florida

“SUMMERTIME” TUNA BURGER • 4 leaves green leaf lettuce • 4 slices red onion • 4 each, favorite hamburger beef buns (I use Brioche) 1 teaspoon sesame oil • ½ cup mayonnaise ½ cup extra virgin olive oil • 2 tablespoons wasabi 1 tablespoon soy sauce powder Salt and pepper to taste • 1 tablespoon water 4 slices Florida tomato

• 2 Pounds Fresh Tuna, Bright Red and chopped • • • • •

Mix tuna with sesame oil, olive oil and soy sauce. Mix vigorously until the mix becomes sticky. For the wasabi mayonnaise, mayonnaise and mix till smooth. Form tuna into burgers, season with salt and pepper and either cook on the grill or a nonstick pan, like you would a normal burger, but being more gentle as they are delicate. Serve very rare on buns with the wasabi mayo, lettuce, tomato and onion. I made sweet potato fries, but any good grilling sides will work. Happy 4th of July Corey

Cove and the Riverwalk Restraurant at Tin City where he has worked for over 10 years. Chef Corey can be contacted at chefcoreyatcraytoncove@ gmail.com or @coreyoheath.

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Southwest Florida Christian Academy’s 7th Annual Fall Slam

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outhwest Florida Christian Academy’s Athletic Booster Club is currently organizing their 7th Annual Fall Slam fishing tournament scheduled for September 22-23, 2017. SFCA is a K-12 private Christian school located at 3750 Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers. This

exciting, family friendly event is held each fall to raise funds to enhance and keep up with SFCA’s growing athletic programs and needs of their student athletes. Proceeds from the tournament this year are earmarked for acquiring permanent bleachers for the existing football/soccer field on SFCA’s campus. The two-day event starts on Friday night, September 22nd with a Captain’s meeting and dinner. The catch and release fishing tournament of trout and redfish begins on Saturday, September 23rd at 7am with an

honor start. The event concludes with a full dinner, awards/prize disbursement and a silent auction held on the school’s campus Saturday night. The Athletic Boosters are currently registering boats, signing up business sponsors and acquiring donations for the event. To learn more or to

participate in SFCA’s Fall Slam Fishing Tournament please go to www.sfcafallslam.com or call 239936-8865. To learn more about Southwest Florida Christian Academy and its college prep academics, arts and athletics programs please go to www.swfca. com.

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First Confirmed Snakehead Caught in Mississippi Lake

USFWS Photo

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he scourge is spreading. In early June, a bowfisherman arrowed Mississippi’s first confirmed northern snakehead from an oxbow lake of the Mississippi River. The fish was caught from Lake Whittington in west-central Mississippi’s Bolivar County near the Arkansas border. Bow fishermen Brad Baugh and Bubba Steadman, of Cleveland, Miss., shot the fish on June 5. They kept the fish, photographed it, and immediately contacted the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks (MDWFP). “Snakeheads have been present in the White River Basin in Arkansas since 2008 and have been steadily expanding their range towards the Mississippi River,” said MDWFP Delta fisheries biologist Nathan Aycock. “The Mississippi River provides these fish with access to connected oxbows like Lake Whittington as well as the Yazoo and Big Black Rivers.” Northern snakeheads are native to China, Russia and Korea. Established populations have been found in Arkansas, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia, where their impacts to native fish populations remain unknown. Northern snakeheads are typically found in shallow, backwater areas and can breathe air, which allows them to survive for extended periods of time out of the water. Northern snakeheads appear similar to the Southeast’s native Bowfin, also known as grinnel or mud bass. MDWFP and other state wildlife agencies encourage anyone who thinks they have caught a snakehead to keep the fish, photograph it, and contact wildlife officials.

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n appropriate Florida fish for July, when we celebrate our independence on the fourth, is the flagfish, also called the American flagfish, a small fish that is usually found only in Florida. It takes its name from the male fish’s resemblance to the American flag: a large black or blue dot and red-and-white stripes on its body that resemble a flag. The Latin name (“Jordanella floridae”) honors an important zoologist, C. Basil Jordan, who ran a fish research program for the U.S. Fish Commission and for the Smithsonian Institution in the late 1880s. He was also the U.S. Commissioner for Fish and Fisheries, as well as the author of many publications and scientific reports. The fish, which fish stores sell for aquaria, takes its other common name, “pupfish,” from the seemingly playful mating habits of the male fish, habits that look like puppies at play. The fish were originally found in Florida drainage ponds, as well as the Ochlocknee and St. Johns Rivers. They seem to prefer slow-moving water with a lot of vegetation and are usually found in swamps and marshes. A sharp-eyed observer may see them even in brackish waters, for example in estuaries where river water mixes with

seawater. The small fish, which may grow to only 2 1/2 inches in length, are actually in the Guinness Book of World Records as the fish with the fewest eggs. The fish usually produce only about twenty eggs over a span of several days, although the female fish have been known to lay many more eggs in aquaria, where the fish are very productive at eating algae in the aquaria. In the wild, flagfish feed on crustaceans, insects, plants and worms. The males do their part in taking care of the eggs, which the female has laid over algal-covered rocks. The eggs will adhere to the rocks because of a sticky thread that connects the eggs to the rocks. The male adults will guard the newly laid eggs and fan them with their fins in order to keep them clean and aerated. The life span of the fish is two to three

USA Fields First-Ever Ladies’ Team For Match Fishing World Championships

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atch fishing… chances are it’s a style of competitive fishing you’ve never heard of. While match fishing is hugely popular throughout Europe, its seemingly bizarre tactics leave even experienced American anglers scratching their heads. But don’t confuse something unfamiliar with a sport that’s simple or unsophisticated. To the contrary, a quick search of the Internet will reveal a world of highly evolved angling complexity. Match fishing competitions find participants confined to small areas, or pegs, along a bank, with the goal of catching the heaviest combined weight of fish during a prescribed time period. Equipment and tactics vary depending on the venue and available species. Top competitors catch six fish or more per minute over a three-hour period—all the while managing

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years, but – with care – they can live for five years. This column usually deals with much larger fish, the kinds that can be found in our oceans and rivers, but it seemed appropriate on this Independence Day to honor the American flagfish. Kevin McCarthy, the award-winning author of “South Florida Waterways” (2013 - available at amazon.com for $7), can be reached at ceyhankevin@gmail.com.

For more on Kevin McCarthy, go to

GOBOATBOUND.COM

delicate tackle, adjusting presentations and continually metering precise quantities of ground bait into the water to attract fish and keep them feeding. Competitors often employ tiny size 16-20 hooks to target fish less than four-inches long, but must be ready to battle larger fish like carp on the same gear. Six accomplished female anglers will represent the United States at the 24th Annual Ladies’ Match Fishing World Championships in Szolnok, Hungary on Aug. 26 and 27. The first-ever ladies team was assembled by the United States Angling Confederation. The team consists of Barb Carey, Hannah Stonehouse Hudson and Kristen Monroe, all of Wisconsin, Elise De Villiers and Penelope Smit, of Florida, and Shelly Holland, of Minnesota. De Villiers and Smit are veteran match anglers, while Carey, Holland, Hudson and Monroe will be competing for the first time in Hungary. “We don’t expect miracles,” said Team Coach, Attila Agh, a lifelong match angler from Hungary who moved to the United States 17 years ago and has since become a U.S. citizen. “Our competition has been fishing in this way for their entire lives. But I am very encouraged by the spirit our ladies are showing, their angling ability and their competitive nature. They are learning the necessary skills that are new to them and progressing quickly.” Agh warned the competition not to count the Americans out, and the team agrees. De Villiers, who started her match-fishing career in the U.S. nearly 20 years ago, coached and fished on South Africa’s ladies team in the FIPSed World Championships in 2012 and 2013. “I’m very excited that the U.S.A. will have a team competing in Hungary this summer,” she said. “I’m enjoying getting to know these other wonderful ladies and helping to prepare them however I can. I’m extremely proud to be representing Team USA.” In addition to maintaining a rigorous training schedule, the USA Ladies’ Match Fishing Team is raising money to offset significant costs leading up to the competition. Individuals and businesses interested in helping financially are invited to make tax-deductible donations of any amount at www.gofundme.com/team-usa-ladies-match-fishing. Visit www.teamusafishing.org for more information, or join the conversation on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/TeamUSALadiesMatchFishing/.

6/19/17 4:02 PM


Keep An Eye

On The Hook By Patrick Sebile

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ccidents happen while fishing. A treble hook impaling your hand while you’re trying to remove the lure from a thrashing ladyfish is one common example. If you fish long enough, you are bound to be hooked at one time or another. With limbs or digits, getting hooked is a relatively minor incident. A hook in the eyeball is a life-changing event. I have had several close encounters when lures came way too close to my face. It has convinced me to be cautious. It has taught me to hold the rod at an angle so the lure won’t fly back at me if it suddenly pops free from a fish’s mouth or a snag. But while I can control my own actions, I can’t predict the actions of others in the boat. Several potentially dangerous moments remain fresh in my memory, and they keep me aware of what is going on around me. It also reminds me to wear glasses for more than just the reduction of glare. One of these chilling experiences happened a few months ago when my good friend Alessandro came from Italy to visit me in Florida. We went out early to a spot where snook and small tarpon had been biting topwater baits before the sun rose. I coached him to retrieve his Sebile Splasher with the rod tip close to the surface, and to set the hook sideways to keep the lure from flying at us on a missed hook set. It’s easy to coach, but when a tarpon rolls on your bait, the blood boils and coaching flies out the window. Alessandro reared back with a tremendous hook set, and that Splasher with its two big treble hooks flew straight at me, just a few inches from my eyes. On another occasion, I was trolling inlets on the west coast of Africa. Because of the area we were fishing, the lures were close to the boat. We were pulling a big shad crankbait just 20 feet behind the boat. I spotted a drifting branch and knew the big crankbait was about to snag it. I told my client not to set the hook when the tip bent, but he grabbed that rod and gave it a powerful jerk. That 5-inch-long lure flew at my head with so much force that four of the six treble hooks embedded deeply into my hand. I was lucky I had time to get my hand in front of my face. It was bad, but at least they didn’t get my eyes. We were 10 hours from the nearest hospital. These anecdotes are examples of why I always wear glasses on the water. Good reinforced, impact-resistant polarized glasses—such as the Rhinolens line from Flying Fisherman—shield your eyes from hooks as well as the sun. Even in super low-light conditions, I wear bright yellow polycarbonate shades made for shooters. We only have two eyes, and I will not trust the protection of mine to cheap glasses. Safety first, my friends… in fishing and loving! Patrick Sebile is the owner and lure designer of Sebile Innovative Fishing (www.sebile.com). COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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By Chris Beardsley

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know I’m not alone when I say that I really like fishing for sharks. They can be caught on virtually any cut or live bait and fight as well or better than other “more desirable” game fish. Sharks are opportunistic feeders and can be caught offshore as well as inshore, and fishing for them in the surf can be a lot of fun. In most Gulf waters, sharks are plentiful. Unbeknownst to beachgoers, they often occupy the same warm water where swimmers frolick. On a recent trip to the Gulf, I was summoned from the surf by frantic family members when a respectable shark was seen swimming in the same trough I happened to be in. No harm done. The good news is that the majority of sharks pose little threat to humans. While moderate casting distances make shore fishing appealing, it might be considered bad form to land a shark where others are swimming. Be aware of your surroundings and, if necessary, find a more remote location to avoid spookin’ the kids. Generally speaking, the sharks you will target range from 3 to 4 feet and often feed on small fish and crustaceans. Your favorite 7-foot medium to medium-heavy rod and 5000 series reel combo will work perfectly. Of course, there are as many opinions regarding bait as there are fishermen, but when it comes to sharks, cut bait is a favorite. I prefer a 3-inch, skin-on ladyfish fillet while others prefer blue runners or frozen squid. A common rule of thumb is “the larger the bait, the larger the fish.” So gear selection is critical. A 2/0 circle hook is the smallest I will use, and a steel leader provides good insurance. On the other hand, larger sharks are caught in relatively shallow water too, and their close proximity to shore can make for some exciting fishing. If you plan to target the big boys in the surf, just remember that these are large, powerful animals that require the use of proper gear and utmost respect before, during and after the catch. For sharks starting at 5 feet, an 8000 series reel with 65-lb. braid coupled with a stout surf rod, 7/0 hooks and single-strand steel leaders are a minimum starting point. It is important to understand that landing and releasing the fish as quickly as possible greatly increases its survivability post-release. You will do yourself and the fish a great service by researching which sharks are in your area and what equipment to use. I once read that fishing for sharks was reserved for vacationing Midwesterners and included a tidbit questioning the region’s collective manhood for doing so. Before I could get too offended, it dawned on me that 1) I am from the Midwest, and 2) I do like catching sharks! I am still trying to figure out how this affects my manhood, but in the meantime, make way because I’ve got a bucket of cut bait, a steel leader and some hungry sharks to feed! Chris is a freelance writer from Wisconsin with an obsession for all things saltwater. He does most of his fishing on Florida’s Forgotten Coast.

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HERE COMES SCALLOP SEASON!

By Lynn Crutchfield ach year we plan our calendar around July 1st. That’s opening day for scallop season, and everyday between July and September is a good day for scalloping.

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inlet, and less than a mile from the shoreline. 3. Jump in the water. 4. Look down, you’ll see them. The white seashells stick out against the green sea grass.

If you have never been scalloping before, don’t worry about 5. Grab them with your hand “Learning How To Scallop.” Did they don’t bite. you have to learn how to Easter Egg Hunt? 6. Put them in a mesh bag. HERE'S HOW YOU SCALLOP: 1 . Get a snorkel and a good fitting mask. We like the dry snorkels. 2 . Get a boat ride to the Homosassa or Crystal River Scallop Grounds (usually within a couple of miles from either

7. Repeat steps four thru six until your bag is full (usually a couple of fun hours). 8. Open them and take out the scallop. 9. Eat and enjoy! If you have missed this wonderful Florida harvest

event in the past, you owe it to yourself and your family to get over to Citrus County this year and experience this fun, fun, fun harvest. If you need information about places to stay, boat rentals, boat ramps or even restaurants that will cook your catch just call or email The Citrus County Visitors Bureau at 352-628-9305. www.visitcitrus.com

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By Andrea Whitaker

Pura Vida Instructor Craig Buss peeks through rebar structures on Palm Beach’s newest artificial reef.

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nder the waters off Palm Beach, history is coming alive. Sunken between depths of 70 and 85 feet off Singer Island lie the remains of the Flagler Bridge. This bridge was once the connection between Palm Beach Island and downtown West Palm Beach. Now, it will lie in the depths as an artificial reef, bridging the gap between previously sunken artificial reefs to one another. But why? Why take old bridge rubble and sink it offshore? To start, the town of Palm Beach didn’t just get rid of the Flagler Bridge access to and from Palm Beach Island. They are replacing the bridge, and construction is slated to be complete by the end of June 2017. Second, Florida has one of the most active artificial reef programs in the nation. Creating artificial reefs facilitates new scuba diving destinations and improves fishing opportunities. Palm Beach County’s Environmental Resource Management had 40 Airline_Ad_CoastalAngler_8-1-14_Layout 1 8/1/14 1:14 Page 1 Flagler Bridge. to 50 loaded barges of rubble available from thePM previous

They contacted Pura Vida Divers, a member of the Palm Beach County Dive Association, asking for recommendations as to where to place most of the bridge rubble. Pura Vida’s suggestion was to fill in the gap between a few of the area’s most popular artificial reefs, the Mizpah Corridor (a series of four artificial reef shipwrecks offshore Singer Island) and the recently placed Danny McCauley Memorial Reef and Mermaid Statue (another artificial reef shipwreck offshore Singer Island north of the Mizpah Corridor). This was the ideal location because placing the bridge rubble between these two wreck sites would create an approximately 1-mile-long dive site, with multiple routes for divers to enjoy and a series of new habitats for our marine life to congregate. Now, with the rubble in place, we were ready to explore this exciting new dive. Upon hearing the captain’s famous words that signal the start of every underwater adventure, “Dive! Dive! Dive!,” divers descend down upon the massive remnants of the Flagler Bridge. Following the current, they will come across concrete lateral bracing, fenders and bearings that give off an eerie type of feeling 80 feet below the surface. As time progresses and nutrients flow, the bridge rubble will provide refuge to colorful marine life influencing and seducing reef fish and larger pelagic fish to come rest and feed among the others. Come dive this new artificial reef of Palm Beach County with Pura Vida Divers! Pura Vida Divers runs daily SCUBA charters, and divers are welcome to request their favorite sites, including this fantastic new series of artificial reefs. For more information about diving this location or to schedule a charter, call Pura Vida Divers at 561-840-8750 or email info. pvd@puravidadivers.com.

For more Palm Beach Reefs, go to

PEACEFULWATERS.CO

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By CAM Staff

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his is a mighty big horseeye jack Sharon Kartrude Pryel caught while fishing with Mystic Rose Charters and Capt. Mark Stoe out of Jupiter in June. Sharon said the fish weighed 26 pounds, which would be good enough for a Florida state record if the paperwork submitted to the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) passes muster. As far as we can tell, the largest Florida horse-eye jack on record weighed 25-pounds, 12-ounces. It was caught back in October of 1997 by David Leavitt, who was fishing out of Palm Beach. The IGFA all-tackle world record weighed 32 pounds. It was caught in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Texas by Terry Lee Ramsey in September, 2012. Sharon said she caught the fish drifting a sardine on a 1-oz. weight over 130 feet of water. Horse-eyes aren’t really known as a great food fish, but they are edible, and like all jacks they put up a heck of a fight when hooked. Sharon said Capt. Mark was impressed with her strength as she hauled the big fish up. She is a 6-foot-tall wallpaper hanger, which makes for a strong back. That jack didn’t stand a chance. “It was awesome. I was so proud of myself,” Sharon said. “I seriously thought I had a shark. The rod was just bowed.” Sharon is a native of West Palm Beach and a member of the online community www.meetup.com/NPBCFishingoutdoors. The group organizes charter trips each month, and she is excited about all she is learning about fishing. COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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CA Florida, the state’s leading organization dedicated to marine fisheries conservation, education and advocacy, today shared details on the first winner in the nonprofit’s signature event: CCA Florida STAR, presented by Yamaha. While two of the event’s tagged redfish were caught, only one angler was registered to win, and will walk away with a prize package worth more than $55,000 from Maverick Boat Group and Yamaha Outboards. Monticello resident Benjamin Gavins caught a 19-inch STAR tagged redfish (tag FL637) on June 1 near Lanark Village in Franklin County. A CCA Florida member since 2013, Gavins was shocked to see the tag on his catch and immediately notified the organization, per event regulations. “Frankly, I was stunned when I saw the green tag on that beautiful little red,” said Gavins. “This is my third year fishing the STAR event and it continues to be the most enjoyable fishing competition I have ever entered, and it’s all to support the conservation of our precious marine resources. I call that a win-win.” Of the event’s major prizes, Gavins chose the 2017 Pathfinder 2200 TRS bay boat. A second STAR tagged redfish, tag FL704, was also caught on June 1, but in Sisters Creek near Jacksonville. At the time of his catch, the angler was neither a CCA Florida member or registered for the STAR event and is ineligible for any prize package. CCA Florida STAR, presented by Yamaha, is the largest family-friendly saltwater fishing competition in Florida and kickedoff on Saturday, May 27. STAR focuses on conservation and offers up to $500,000 in prizes and scholarships. CCA Florida is using the social media-based, 101-day event to educate the public on the importance of protecting Florida’s marine resources. Recognized as a “catch, photo and release” competition, STAR’s smart phone app eliminates the requirement for anglers to harvest or capture and transport fish. Prizes in the event’s STAR Signature Division include a new GMC Sierra Pickup or one of several Yamaha- powered boat packages including a Contender 22 Sport, Pathfinder 2200 TRS, Maverick HPX-S, Sea Hunt 225 Ultra or the Carolina Skiff 21 Sport & Fish. Youth anglers will be eligible to participate in the tagged redfish division with the first two winners taking home a Carolina Skiff 16 JVX CC powered by a 40hp Yamaha. The STAR Youth Scholarship Division presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors offers the opportunity to win one of twelve scholarships totaling $100,000. Other divisions include Conservation and Costa Kick Plastic, which encourage trash and debris collection, and Open, Ladies, Fly, Kayak, Lionfish Professional Guides. Eligible species are spotted seatrout, snook, sheepshead, non-tagged redfish, cobia, dolphin and kingfish. Division winners are determined by a random drawing, a format that encourages participants of all ages to protect and conserve Florida’s fisheries.

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For more information on STAR or to register, visit the CCA Florida Facebook page or ccaflstar.com. COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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By Julie Richardson

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he first time I heard the term ‘shallow-water blackout’ my family had already been freediving and spearfishing for 24 years. My 19-year-old son Robert had taken a course and began describing this phenomenon of how a freediver could blackout while breath-hold diving. I waved my hand dismissively. “That happens to people who don’t know what they are doing,” I said. “We’re experienced.” Three months later, I got schooled in just how wrong I was. April 19, 2008 dawned with beautiful calm seas and clear skies—a spearfisherman’s dream. It was Robert’s 20th birthday, and he wanted to celebrate it by diving with his 16-year-old brother, David, and three other friends: Carson, 20; Nicky, 16; and Richard, 15, who were not experienced freedivers. The boys left early in the morning to freedive together, and we planned to join them in the afternoon with friends and family who were coming out with us on our larger boat. After a successful dive of 50 feet, the boys decided to do a deeper dive. They put the anchor out in 92 feet of water, and Robert headed down first with David behind him. At the bottom, they both grabbed some sand before heading back up. Robert was 15 feet from the surface when he looked down at his brother and saw David motionless 30 feet below him. Robert swam down and grabbed his unconscious brother around the chest before heading for the surface. That’s the last thing Robert remembers. Their friends on the boat suddenly noticed my sons’ bodies drifting face down in the current some 30 yards away. Carson dived off the boat and swam out to them with Nicky right behind him. They turned the boys over. My sons’ faces were blue with swollen purple lips and open staring eyes. The color of their eyes had faded. They were not breathing and were bleeding from the mouth. Their three traumatized friends— engulfed in a nightmare—worked together to bring them onboard and start CPR. And then I got the call. “Hello?” “There’s been an accident.” “Which one?” I asked as fear enveloped me. “Both.” I clung to the table. My heart felt like it was going to explode. I took deep breaths trying to ease the pain in my chest, but it didn’t work. I started praying, with Carson’s girlfriend, that my sons would be spared. My husband Walter and I met the helicopter at the hospital. The boys’ arterial blood gases (oxygen levels) were so low—32 and 54 per-

cent—the ER doctor did not believe the report and had it verbally repeated five times. The pulmonologist told us our sons’ lungs presented as drowning victims. Yet, after three days in ICU, Robert and David were sent home to finish healing. It was a miracle. Soon after the accident, concerned freedive experts contacted me and encouraged me to use my story to make a difference. I felt a strong desire to respond, and so two months after the accident, I founded DiveWise to further freedive safety education. Tracking fatality reports is vital in understanding how accidents happen and how we can prevent them. Divers Alert Network (DAN) maintains an online Breath-hold Incident Database, so divers can report fatal and non-fatal blackout events easily and anonymously. This can be accessed at DiveWise.org. Through much effort and single-minded dedication, Terry Maas has given a gift to freedivers everywhere with his ingenious device, the Freediver Recovery Vest (FRV). This unit is designed, through the diver’s preset depth and time setting, to deliver a blackout victim to the surface face up. You can read more about it at oceanicss.com. My sons now wear the FRV when they freedive and spearfish. There are other ways freedivers can mitigate the risk in this sport: 1. Dive with an evenly matched partner and conform to the level of the least capable diver. 2. Weight yourself correctly by being positively buoyant at the surface after a full exhalation. 3. Do not hyperventilate to excess. 4. Dive one up/one down maintaining constant visual contact. 5. When conditions allow, each diver should have a dive flag; if a boat is involved a dive flag should be conspicuously displayed. 6. Maintain close, direct supervision of a freediver for no less than 30 seconds after they surface, even if they have signaled “OK.” 7. Make your minimum surface interval twice the duration of your dive time. 8. Do not take every dive to its limit; maintain a reserve. 9. Review, practice, and discuss how to recognize and handle blackouts and near blackouts. Never before has more effort from more groups created a greater combined potential for saving lives in the sport of freediving and spearfishing. We are hopeful this will correspond to a lower fatality rate. DiveWise isn’t my organization. It’s yours. We are here to serve the freedive community. Please help by donating online at our website DiveWise.org, a 501 c(3) nonprofit organization, or by offering your suggestions on how we can better help the freedive community. We offer a big “thank you” to the organizations and individuals who have given generously these past nine years in support of our work. We couldn’t have done it without you. Julie Richardson lives in Miami, Fla. with her husband and their three sons. She and her family are avid boaters and spearfishers. In 2010, Julie won the National Award from the Coast Guard funded National Water Safety Congress for her work in promoting water safety. To learn more visit DiveWise.org.

To learn more on Freediving blackouts, go to

CAMOFFSHORE.COM

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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FRESHWATER $1200 IN-HOUSE REBATE OR FREE BOAT COVER By Frank Geremski t The St. Lawrence produced a tie for the state record smallmouth last August when Patrick Hildenbrand caught this 8-lb., 4-oz. fish that was just 21.5 inches long.

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he St. Lawrence is a majestic river that combines a world-famous historic seaway with breathtaking scenery. Countless islands speckle the St. Lawrence, coining the area’s moniker as the 1000 Islands Region. The area’s beauty must be witnessed first-hand to be truly appreciated. Most important for anglers, this deep-water channel that connects the Great Lakes with the Atlantic Ocean creates countless fishing opportunities. The 1000 Islands Region of Upstate New York offers world-class fishing for huge and plentiful northern pike and tasty walleye, and for as long as anyone can remember it’s been the musky capital of North America. But it’s the St. Lawrence’s bass fishing that will take center stage this summer, with the Bassmaster Elite Series coming to the 1000 Islands Region for the third time in five years. This fishery has always offered tremendous bass fishing, with countless shoals and sunken ships that create textbook structure for smallmouth bass, and myriad bays and weedy backwaters that offer phenomenal largemouth opportunities. A full day of bent rods on 2- and 3-pound smallmouth has always been the norm. In the last decade, an invasive baitfish species, the goby, has populated this and other Great Lakes. Their spread has been like steroids for the smallmouth population. The goby’s desired habitat aligns perfectly with the smallie’s dinner table. Evidence of this is the pot-bellied New York record 8-lb., 4-oz. smallmouth landed last August. This trophy smallmouth fishing has lured the highest level of tournament bass fishing to small, yet quaint Waddington, N.Y. from July 20-23. Bassmaster recently polled its professionals and found that the St. Lawrence ranks among their favorite destinations. Five fish bags over 20 pounds are expected. The Angler Magazine field expert and Bassmaster Justin Walts predicts about 75 percent of the professionals will target smallmouths. In smallmouth waters, pros often ensure a five-fish bag of 2- to 3-pound smallies before seeking out bigger largemouth. On the St. Lawrence, the dynamic changes because of the possibility of scoring huge smallmouth. Walts, who fishes the St. Lawrence often, favors drop-shotting deeper shoals in 25 to 50 feet of water with watermelon, shad or perch colored V-tailed shad or casting crankbaits and swimbaits on shoals 25 feet or shallower. Flipping weeds or tossing frogs in back bays is the ticket to score largemouth. Spectator participation is also a factor for the Elite Series return to Waddington. In 2015, the town hosted over 30,000 fishing fans, breaking an Elite Series record. Waddington hosts a four-day event to entertain and feed visitors, with music and fireworks provided by local sponsors. Waddington is easily reached via a picturesque drive from Syracuse, or via airports in Massena, Ogdensburg, or Watertown, N.Y. Visit www.waddingtonpartyinthepark.com for more details. For more on fishing St. Lawrence County, visit www.fishcap.com to receive a free St. Lawrence County Anglers Guide and information on other tremendous fisheries, specifically Black Lake which is loaded with bass, crappie and pike. 20

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FRESHWATER A Pro’s Guide To Okeechobee Bream By Steve Daniel, The Voice of Okeechobee

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ake Okeechobee is known as one of the best bass lakes in the world, but it is also a fantastic bream fishery. Every spring Okeechobee is invaded by thousands of anglers loaded down with cases of live crickets. I prefer to use artificials. For this reason, I look for them in open water instead of around heavy grass. Okeechobee bream spawn in big groups. When you find them, you can catch your limit quickly, and they’re easy to spot on the edges of the grass when the sun gets up. The only lure I use is a modified black Beetle Spin. I take a 1/32-ounce Beetle Spin and replace the arm and blade with an Arkie Jig Spinner, which is a slightly larger blade that makes the lure easier to cast and feel. I also replace the head with one that weighs 1/16 of an ounce. It is important to use a heavier jig that has the same size hook that comes with the original lure. That way you can use the black plastic grub that comes with the Beetle Spin. Cast this lure around the beds, and you won’t have any trouble filling your livewell. The limit on Okeechobee is 50 per day.

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UNDER THE SEA 24

SPEARFISHING – WHERE TO BEGIN?

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club members are there because they are sociable and willing to help others. They remember starting out and are often willing to take you out and give advice. Just remember to return the favor by being a good buddy; help pay for the gas, bring snacks and water to share, and help clean the boat. That will hopefully get you invited back. Learning from others who already do it is probably the most valuable step you can take. If you are lucky, you will share many great experiences, have a new AJ Hally and Sheri Daye with dinner. set of lifelong friends, and maybe even find a mentor or two.

ummer is here! What better time to learn to spearfish? Many people have gotten into it because they were already “divers” and wanted to try another activity while underwater—as happened to me. A few fishermen, who weren’t yet divers, have asked me where to begin if they wanted to learn. My first piece of advice to anyone is to be sure you are comfortable underwater, whether scuba diving or freediving. One must be so comfortable underwater that it becomes second nature. If scuba diving, achieving proper buoyancy should happen without even thinking about it. If freediving, it’s best to have many dives under your belt before picking up a speargun. Fortunately, there are many dive agencies and dive shops that offer scuba certification and freediving instruction. Beyond that, I recommend at least one year’s worth of experience diving under different conditions before attempting to spearfish. It is a very good sign if you are so calm and collected in the water that fish which are normally “spooky” will let you swim near them instead of running from your presence (such as mutton snappers and black groupers). This is the sign of an experienced diver and will help you to properly hunt fish. When ready to begin, it’s important to have the right equipment— and I’m not just talking about a speargun. Get advice from a reputable dive shop that specializes in spearfishing. They will guide you toward the right wetsuit, mask, knife, gloves and speargun. Dive shops are familiar with local conditions and will give good advice. If you have a spearfishing club in the area, by all means, join! Many

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Here are a few more tips: 1. Always remember that safety comes first. Don’t do anything that is risky or beyond your comfort zone. 2. Learn what size and species to target in order to maintain quality and selectivity. Keep it honorable and ethical. Consider setting even higher standards than the law allows. 3. Spend more time observing in the beginning. Watch the more experienced hunters; you can learn a lot just by watching them. 4. Consider starting with a polespear instead of a speargun in order to refine your stalking skills, as this requires that you get closer. This is especially good for young divers. 5. Enjoy the experience, keep it fun and consider being a mentor to someone else as you improve. Sheri is a world-record holder, host of Speargun Hunter and producer of “The Blue Wild Ocean Adventure Expo” in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Follow “Sheri Daye” and “The Blue Wild” on Facebook and Instagram.

For more Sheri Daye, go to

CAMSPEARFISHING.COM

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

6/19/17 5:01 PM


CAM Special Correspondent Tobin Strickland

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t’s summertime, and shallow-water fishing for reds is kicking off this month. It will last through mid October on the Atlantic Coast, and to mid February along the Gulf Coast. Before you “see” your first tailing redfish, you really feel like everyone is just making this up. You see nothing during an eight hour shallow-water expedition, and others come back speaking of tails “… like a used car lot, flags everywhere,” as Capt. Chuck Uzzle of Orange, Texas would say.

But why aren’t you seeing this? There are several factors involved in seeing tailing redfish, redfish swimming in shallow water; they are not easy to see. If you are fishing shallow seagrass, marsh or even flooded spartina marsh in areas where redfish roam and you’re doing it during a season when shrimp are abundant in those areas, then there are tailing redfish there. Let’s take a look at what you should be looking for with your eyes. Both Capt. Steve Soule of Galveston, Texas and Chuck McKinney of Portland, Texas say you should be looking for the horizontal line of the redfish’s back. Everything in the marsh and on seagrass flats tends to be either vertical or irregular shaped. Grass is vertical, potholes are irregular, even oyster reef edges are irregular. See a redfish cruising the flats, and the first thing you will notice is the horizontal line of it’s back. A good pair of Costa 580g lenses is what you want for this. The only difference between a cruiser and a tailer is that the tailer is probably nose down into the mud and a little bit of his tail is sticking out of the water. You’ll probably only see a little dark triangle at the end of the horizontal line of the redfish’s back. You typically won’t see the big blue tail and black dot rising out of the water waving at you like a little red flag back and forth. So begin to look for the horizontal line, the small triangle, and the glow of coppery orange. This should help you to see what’s been in front of you all along. Let’s talk about something else here that’s also a problem for most people. These environments are very grassy, and throwing an open-throated jig head during summer low tides is asking for trouble. Might as well go ahead and throw the lunch salad on a hook, because that’s all that fish is going to see. You have to throw something weedless that you can cast accurately, no matter the wind, something that can get the fish’s attention with action or accuracy, and sinks naturally so they can’t pass up such an easy meal. The troutsupport.com lure solves many of the frustrations sight casters have to put up with. Both reds and speckled trout love it. It casts far and accurately, walks the dog, wobbles like a big slow spoon, but is buoyant enough to sink slowly right in the fish’s face. Tobin created TroutSupport.com to help anglers develop their abilities by learning what to look for on the water.

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Choosing Colors

For Your Trolling Lures By Darrell Primrose, Ballyhood Lures

“M

atch the hatch” is an old adage fishermen have used for ages. It comes from freshwater fly fishing, in which anglers seek to match, with an artificial fly, the insect life hatching off the water to fool feeding trout. The same concept applies across the fishing world. Offshore, this can mean taking the time to examine the stomach contents of the first fish you catch to see what it was feeding on. Cut that fish open and check the length and size of the current forage as well as its color. Then use that information to choose your lures accordingly. I get to talk to anglers worldwide on a daily basis. I ask them all, “What colors are most prevalent?” What I’ve learned from them goes into our Ballyhood trolling lures, and the best color combinations change from location to location. On the West Coast, where anchovies, sardines, mackerel and squid

are the most prolific forage species, the most popular trolling lure colors are used in our Mexican flag, which is green/yellow/red/white. Black/ purple is another color scheme proven to produce in a trolling spread. Squid turn purple, and that could be a reason it is such a successful color. Zuchini is also a very popular color used on the West Coast. It’s a green/ orange/yellow lure. Now, taking a look at the northeast—in the Atlantic off New York, Massachusetts and New Jersey—they catch more tuna than most places in the world. Their top must-use colors are solid green, green/yellow and black/purple. In Florida, the Bahamas and the Virgin Islands, the No. 1 color is light blue. Colors known as Bally Blue and Flying Fish Blue are quite productive. I’ll assume you caught the baitfish reference in those color names. Pink/white and black/red also see a lot of time in the water, but anglers in these southern waters very rarely use anything green. Their water is very clear, which I think has something to do with it. In the Northeast, as on the West Coast of the U.S., the water is fairly dark. When you start to get farther south in the Pacific around Cabo San Lucas and down to Cancun, the colors used tend to lean toward the same choices as those used in Florida, the Bahamas and the Caribbean. The southern Pacific has the same type of clear water as they enjoy off south Florida. I can tell you the most overlooked color on the southern West Coast is pink or pink/white, at the same time pink/white is the No. 1 color for albacore off Oregon and Washington. Another guideline to color choices is to use dark colors on dark days and bright colors on bright days. Now some of this information has to do with matching the hatch, some of it is based on water clarity, but all off it is gathered from onthe-water experience and reflects what produces fish the best. Color is an absolutely critical factor in choosing which lures to include in a spread. For information on Ballyhood Top Gun Lures see www.ballyhood. com or call 714-545-0196.

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PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT DEXTER SOFGRIP FILLET KNIVES Dexter SOFGRIP flexible fillet knives are the outdoors standard and make filleting tasks easy. A soft-to-the-touch, textured handle provides both comfort and a slipresistant grip. An ergonomic handle shape fills and matches the contours of the hand, making it more comfortable to use and easier to hold. The protective finger guard prevents slippage and unintended cuts. Dexter’s “wiggleworm” trademarked handle design and surface ornamentation tells you it’s a genuine Dexter. Dexter SOFGRIP fillet knives are crafted with DEXSTEEL, a proprietary high-carbon, high-alloy, stainless cutlery steel that enhances sharpness, edge-holding, corrosion resistance, and ease of re-sharpening. Each fillet blade features Dexter’s legendary just-right flexibility to help get the job done quickly and efficiently. Dexter SOFGRIP fillet knives are proudly made in the U.S.A. and are available in 6”, 7”, 8” and 9” lengths. The 8” fillet knife is also available in a wide, stiff blade. They are all available at your local and online retailer. When shopping for a sharp, durable fillet knife, make sure it’s an original… make sure it’s a Dexter. For more information and to view all Dexter fishing knives, visit dexteroutdoors.com. Already use a Dexter? Visit us on our FB page at facebook. com/DexterOutdoors and tell us about it.

MUDHOLE.COM/SALT-KIT Build Your Own Custom Saltwater Rod With This Turnkey Kit

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The Skimmer Kayak Motor Kit

P

addle fatigue getting to you? Want to motorize your kayak or canoe? There’s no need to pay $2,000 for a motorized kayak. Watercraft Technologies’ The Skimmer is a simple system for motorizing your kayak or canoe, and it costs less than $400. It ble motor that mounts snap it on when you

is a lightweight, portaeasily to your stern. Just need it. Fishing has never been easier, safer and more convenient. Go farther and save your energy for fishing! Increase your range! Catch more fish! The Skimmer weighs only 6 pounds. It’s 12v battery operated. There are easy controls for steering and motor lift. It’s environmentally safe, with no pollution, oil or gas spills. The Skimmer is made for saltwater, but does great in brackish or fresh water. It is able to propel a craft 2-4 knots and lasts two to five hours per charge. Imagine running your kayak at that speed and that long with zero effort! This propulsion system is great for people who want to get on the water and not worry about paddling hard into a swift current or strong wind. It is also great for those with shoulder, back or elbow issues. This kayak trolling motor kit carries a one-year, full parts replacement policy. See The Skimmer in action and order online at www.kayaktrollingmotor.com or order by phone at 631-848-3119.

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PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT

Feds Extend Gulf Red Snapper Season

TSUNAMI SHIELD SPINNING REELS Saltwater can be a double-edged sword! It’s in our blood and it’s what fuels our passion to keep searching for that next trophy. But, it is also the great enemy of fishing tackle. The unique Tsunami SHIELD series of saltwaterproof spinning reels feature up to 13 internal seals in key, strategic locations to shield critical components from harmful saltwater intrusion. The internal seals, super smooth and strong CF3 carbon fiber drag system and five sealed stainless steel bearings are wrapped in a hybrid machined aluminum body combining protection, precision and toughness. The heavy-duty rotor brake controlled bail system and precision machined aluminum, braid-ready spool assure the best control of super braids cast after long cast. The 3000 and 4000 SHIELD models contain 11 strategically located internal seals for years of reliable use with minimal maintenance. The 5000 and 6000 Shield reels contain 13 various internal seals at all of the locations where salt water could reasonably be expected to penetrate the reel for even greater protection in these larger reels. Hybrid all metal construction includes precision machined aircraft aluminum and tempered aluminum precision stampings and heavy duty protective anodizing to keep these reels operating up to factory specifications year after year. The combination of these top-notch designs and precisely mated components are what make the Tsunami SHIELD spinning reels an all-new contender for your favorite reel for years to come! MAP: 3000/4000: $99.99; 5000/6000: $109.99

I

n mid June, the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) announced that private recreational anglers would be allowed an additional 39 days to harvest red snapper in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico. This allowance, the result of negotiations between the five Gulf states and the DOC, comes on the heels of the shortest recreational red snapper season in history. Private recreational anglers were originally allowed just three days of snapper fishing in federal waters June 1-3. This newly re-opened season consists of three-day weekends, Fridays through Sundays, June 16 through Sept. 4 (Labor Day). The extension, however, comes with a tradeoff. State controlled waters extend out to 9 miles, and federally controlled waters are from 9 miles out to 200 miles. In exchange for the additional opportunities in federal waters, state waters will be closed to red snapper harvest for private recreational anglers Mondays through Thursdays this summer. Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas have indicated there might be additional fishing days in state waters this fall depending on the harvest estimates from the summer season. This extension does not make any changes to the quota or season length for the federally permitted for-hire component of the recreational fishery or the commercial individual fishing quota program and the 2017 commercial quota.

The all-electric Power-Pole Micro anchor is compact, virtually silent and drives the 3/4” Micro Spike at the push of a button. Add the rechargable Micro Battery Pak and you’re ready to go wherever adventure takes you. Get all the details and find a dealer near you at power-pole.com.

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PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT INTERLUX INTERPROTECT HS InterProtect HS is a versatile, costeffective, two-part epoxy that meets the most restrictive V.O.C. regulations and helps reduce solvent emissions into the environment. It can be used above and below the waterline as a primer for all substrates. The high solids formula requires fewer coats to reach the desired dry film thickness. An underwater barrier system applied either by roller/brush or airless spray can be achieved in just 7 mils Dry Film Thickness (DFT). InterProtect HS uses Micro-Plate® Technology, which substantially reduces water migration through the epoxy to the hull surface and provides protection from corrosion for all metals. It can also be used as part of a gelcoat blister repair or prevention system and as an alternative no-sand primer on new, or never-been-painted fiberglass boats. For more information, go to www.yachtpaint.com.

WWW.YACHTPAINT.COM

QUICK DROP Line Guide

Outrigger line management system

Features and Benefits: • Attaches to existing outrigger eyelets. • Easily install and remove with a few turns. • Smooth roller action eliminates halyard line wear. • Swivel design, pulley guides can swivel for proper orientation. • Fits all non and telescoping outriggers with eyelets. • Prevents wear on tackle by removing gear when not in use.

2 Free Halyard line Winders

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The Gator Den is a brand new, 12 room motel located at Angler’s Resort, on the Withlacoochee River, Dunnellon, FL. We have a Bait & Tackle Shop, Pontoon and Jon Boat Rentals, Airboat Tours and the Blue Gator Tiki Bar Restaurant, all on premise making this a fisherman’s getaway. 12189 S Williams St Dunnellon, FL 34432 | www.AnglersResort.us Motel: 352-489-2397 Restaurant: 352-465-1635 Boat Rentals: 352-489-2397

PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT TECNIQ BOAT SPREADER LIGHTS Some of the best fishing happens after the sun goes down. For illumination assistance and safety on board at night, TecNiq offers its new P10 and P11 LED Boat Spreader Lights. Available with all white or white/red LEDs, they deliver up to 1,450 lumens with remarkably lower power draws. Offered in recessed and surface-mounted versions, they’re perfect for a tuna tower or T-top. Boat Spreader Lights feature anodized and white powder coated aluminum bodies and impact-resistant polycarbonate flood projection lenses for exceptional durability. Both TecNiq models are available with four highperformance white LEDs, or two white and two night-vision friendly red. They’re completely waterproof and sealed to IP68 standards. TecNiq’s recess mounted P10 Boat Spreader Light installs flush for an integrated appearance. The four white LED model produces 1,300 lumens, or 700 lumens white and 160 red in the combo version. Both draw a maximum 1.2 amps at 12V DC or 0.6 amps with 24V DC. It measures 4.8” L x 1.73” W x 1.26” D. It retails for $145. The P11 surface mounted Boat Spreader Light installs anywhere with its included stainless steel hardware. It produces 1,450 lumens white, or 825 white and 160 red in the combo version. Its maximum draw is 1.6 amps at 12V DC or 0.8 amps with 24V DC. It measures 4.8” L x 1.6” W x 2” D. It retails for $154. Contact TecNiq, 8850 M, Richland, MI 49083. 269-629-4440. sales@ tecniqinc.com; www.tecniqinc.com.

EXPERIENCE THE

FIGHT! Full Variable Speed Control Powerful Brushless Motor Retains Handle Function Digital Line Counter Auto Stop, 12/24VDC Compact & Sleek Design

855-HOOK-ONE

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What Makes A Great Pair of

Fishing Sunglasses?

F

ishing is about being in the right place, at the right time, with the right gear. One bit of gear nearly every angler uses yet may take for granted are sunglasses. But when it comes to fishing sunglasses, what separates a good pair from a great pair? First, fishing sunglasses should always be polarized. Polarization eliminates glare reflecting off of the water, to better show what’s happening under the surface. Not all polarization is equal. Some polarized sunglasses block only 20 to 30 percent of glare. Maui Jim Sunglasses feature patented PolarizedPlus2 technology, eliminating 99.9 percent of glare using high-efficiency, proprietary polarizing film. Maui Jim’s lens materials also stand out. Their SuperThin Glass is 20 percent lighter than standard glass and is saltwater resistant so they won’t peel after too much time at sea. Add it all up, and Maui Jim Sunglasses offer anglers unmatched color, clarity and detail. It’s also important to have the correct lens color to match conditions. Days with varying conditions, from overcast to sunny, are best suited for more versatile lens colors, such as Maui Jim’s HCL Bronze, Maui HT or MauiRose. For days when the sun is on blast, a darker lens color like Maui Jim’s Neutral Grey is your best bet. Another obvious reason any angler should wear quality sunglasses is eye protection. Maui Jim’s block 100 percent of harmful UV rays from the eyes and surrounding areas, and are the only premium sunglasses to have the Skin Cancer Foundation’s Seal of Recommendation. Finally, because accidents happen, a stout warranty never hurts. Maui Jim’s two-year warranty and unparalleled customer service can ease fears of the occasional mishap. So, before your next fishing adventure, be sure to pack a quality pair of sunglasses like Maui Jims. The difference will be crystal clear!

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BIG ICE

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Lon

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SUZUKI DEALS TAKE ADVANTAGE OF ALL THREE SUZUKI DEALS FOR MORE SUMMER FUN

Six Years of Protection at no extra charge on all new outboards 25 to 300 HP.

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Rates as low as 5.99% on new Suzuki outboards (OAC).*

For details and the name of your nearest participating Suzuki Marine dealer, visit www.suzukimarine.com Gimme Six Extended Protection promo is applicable to new Suzuki Outboard Motors from 25 to 300 HP in inventory which are sold and delivered to buyer between 7/01/17 and 9/30/17 in accordance with the promotion by a Participating Authorized Suzuki Marine dealer in the continental US and Alaska to a purchasing customer who resides in the continental US or Alaska. Customer should expect to receive an acknowledgement letter and full copy of contract including terms, conditions and wallet card from Suzuki Extended Protection within 90 days of purchase. If an acknowledgement letter is not received in time period stated, contact Suzuki Motor of America, Inc. – Marine Marketing via email: marinepromo@suz.com. The Gimme Six Promotion is available for pleasure use only, and is not redeemable for cash. Cash Rebates apply to qualifying purchases of select Suzuki Outboard Motors made between 7/01/17 and 9/30/17. For list of designated models, see participating Dealer or visit www.suzukimarine.com. Customer and participating Dealer must fill out the appropriate rebate form at time of sale. Customer will have the choice to either apply the cash rebate against the original dealer invoice (Suzuki will credit Dealer parts account) or have a check sent directly to the customer. There are no model substitutions, benefit substitutions, rain checks, or extensions. Suzuki reserves the right to change or cancel these promotions at any time without notice or obligation. * Financing offers available through Synchrony Retail Finance. As low as 5.99% APR financing for 60 months on new and unregistered Suzuki Outboard Motors. Subject to credit approval. Not all buyers will qualify. Approval, and any rates and terms provided, are based on credit worthiness. $19.99/month per $1,000 financed for 60 months is based on 5.99% APR. Hypothetical figures used in calculation; your actual monthly payment may differ based on financing terms, credit tier qualification, accessories or other factors such as down payment and fees. Offer effective on new, unregistered Suzuki Outboard Motors purchased from a participating authorized Suzuki dealer between 7/01/17 and 9/30/17. “Gimme Six”, the Suzuki “S” and model names are Suzuki trademarks or ®. Don’t drink and drive. Always wear a USCG-approved life jacket and read your owner’s manual. © 2017 Suzuki Motor of America, Inc.

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Coastal Angler Magazine - July / Fort Myers-Cape Coral-Charlotte Harbor  
Coastal Angler Magazine - July / Fort Myers-Cape Coral-Charlotte Harbor  

Coastal Angler Magazine and our interior (freshwater) publication, The Angler Magazine, are monthly editions dedicated to fishing, boating,...