The amount of people fishing has risen drastically over the years, with millions of taking on the sport annually. However, skill alone isn’t going to be enough to catch your next trophy. In order to be a successful fisherman, one should also dress for the part. Below are 9 crazy things all fishermen should have in their tackle boxes. (Besides fishing lures, hooks, and poles of course.)
1) While some fish are toothless and eat their prey by inhaling, most are armed with sharp teeth or a tough beak. Any sane person wouldn’t risk putting their hands inside a toothy maw, so the best option would to get a good pair of needle-nose pliers. Also, by removing hooks out of their mouths, you are also saving the fish from pain and potential starvation if the hook is lodged deep enough.
2) The only way to store prized catches besides using a stringer is to keep fish fresh inside an ice cooler. The great thing about these boxes is that the customizing options are endless. There are a wide variety of different shapes, sizes, and accessories, such as cup holders on the side, to choose form.
3) For many fishermen, finding fish is often a difficult task since the water often reflects the sun’s light rays. To cut through this distracting, try getting a pair of fresh, UV protection sunglasses. Like ice coolers, there is a variety to choose from to match your tastes, while also providing a snazzy look.
4) Fish spines hurt A LOT. To prevent getting gouged, get a pair of fishing gloves. “Besides protection from spines, fishing gloves also provide a safe way to have a firm grip on your catch,” said Delta Net & Twine. Most fish secret a layer of protective slime to guard against infections. However, due to the salts on human skin, when a bare hand touches the fish, its slime layer is effectively removed, leaving the creature vulnerable to disease. However, with fishing gloves, the slime removal is kept to a minimum since rubber isn’t an ideal absorbent.
5) Every year, an alarming amount of people are caught bringing home fish that are undersized. Not surprisingly, the most common item that recreational fisherman forget to bring is a scale. Nowadays, many electronic scales available are very user friendly. Simply put the fish’s gills on the scale and weight for a few seconds, and out pops a number telling you to keep the fish or toss it back in.
6) Although many fishing hooks can be bought in bulk for peanuts, they are dangerous utensils to animals, such as waterfowl and aquatic mammals. Instead of throwing out an old hook, try opting for a hook file, which is used to sharpen old hooks. Furthermore, this exterminates the grueling process of cutting the line, finding a safe place to store the worn out hook, find a new one, and carefully tying on a new one.
7) Invasive fish species, such as the Asian carp, are swimming rampant. Growing up to three feet in length, they annihilate native fish by engorging on their eggs. Furthermore, the vibrations from motorboats cause them to leap frantically out of the water, putting many boaters at risk of being bludgeoned by a 30 pound carp. To prevent the rise of invasive species such as the Asian carp, every fisherman should carry a fish-identification guide, which often includes instructions on what to do if you catch one. To print off a free one online, click here.
8) Ever wonder how the pros are able to launch their lures so precisely? The secret: lead sinkers. By adding extra weight, you will have more control over casting, as well as increasing launching distance. Adding them on is easy, and they don’t seem to discourage fish from biting, either.
9) Anyone who has lived by a pond or lake knows that biting insects are a nuisance. However, being in the middle of a lake won’t protect you either-as long as there is a piece of solid ground, such as cattails or lilies, mosquitoes and gnats won’t be far behind. The best solution is to get an eco-friendly insect repellent, free of toxins and DEET.
Well, there you have it; the ultimate fishing checklist. For further fishing questions, check out a reputable site, such as your state’s department of natural resources.