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The 5 Best Rules to Shoot Bigger Fish

Rule 1: Use strong enough gear.

Don’t bring a knife to a gun fight. If your goal is to shoot a 100 pound grouper or a 50 pound yellowtail, then make sure you have gear that can withstand the fury of a fish that fish. Your speargun should be powerful enough to ensure that the shaft fully penetrates. I’ve literally seen shaft bounce off big fish. Also, have correct setup for your targeted fish. A 11L will not be enough to stop a big fish from sounding and if you are hunting around rocks I wouldn’t recommend monofilament shooting or a slip tip.

Rule 2: Don’t shoot anything else.

If the goal is a 200 pound Bluefin tuna then why would you shoot a 50 pound Bluefin? Be selective and refrain from shooting smaller grade fish. Wait for that trophy fish to swim in front of you before you shoot something else. Recently, I was diving in Baja with a friend and I was sitting on a ledge at around 45’. Noticed that there were several Cabrilla swimming in just on the edge of my visibility. Two of them were really good size, over 20#, but I waited until I said to myself if they give me a shot I am taking one of them. About 2 seconds after saying this to myself, a solid 40 pound Gulf grouper appeared looking right at me. I ended up shooting the grouper right in the face and landed it with minimum effort for a fish that size. The point is that if I would have shot one of those Cabrillas, I would have never seen that grouper. Be patient.

Rules 3: Go chase some tail.

To find bigger fish, you may have to travel to when they are regularly getting fish that size. Sure you could get lucky by hunting your usual spots but it might be much quicker to travel where the big ones are being harvested. Don’t be afraid to do your research and go the extra distance to earn that dream fish.

Rule 4: Build a network.

You may not get an opportunity to dive that week but if one of your friends in your network did, they could share valuable information with you. You can build a network by joining a club or simply reach out to others in you area. Be social and help others when appropriate, karma is real and you will be rewarded with good friends and good information.

Rule 5: Dive often.

Nothing increases your chances of landing that dream more than being in the water. Fish can’t be shot on land so get in the water. Regardless if you shoot a fish or not, you will be gaining valuable experience that will eventually payoff. There is no substitute for time in the water.

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