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Are you interested in fishing for a permit? Do you want to learn how to catch permit? A permit is an elusive and difficult fish to catch with its good eyesight, good sense of hearing, and sense of smell with two sets of nostrils.

A permit is a very suspicious and spooky fish that will swim away at the slightest noise, movement, or vibration. Moreover, permit tends to ignore lures and flies even if they are right in front of them. They also put up a long, stubborn fight when it is hooked and will run deep whenever they can.

How To Catch Permit
How To Catch Permit

How To Catch Permit

1. Baitcasting

Baitcasting is used to catch permit. Locate areas with underwater structures or flats and cast your line and wait for a bite. Look for permit around reefs, flats, inlets, and passes. Live bait, lures, and jigs are used to fish for permit.

2. Fly Fishing

Fly fishing is a popular fishing method used by anglers to catch permit. Fly fishing is more of a fishing method for the experienced angler and is more challenging for a beginner or angler with moderate experience. It requires a good amount of skills to be successful when fly fishing.

Tricks For Permit Fishing
Tricks For Permit Fishing

3. Surf Fishing

You can surf fish for permit during the summer when they are found in schools in the surf. When you spot their tails sticking out of the water, most of the time, they are feeding down below. This presents a good chance to get your bait in front of them to get a bite.

4. Wading

Wading is another fishing method used by anglers to catch permit. When wading, you will move slowly in the water to locate fish. To be successful with wading, you will need to make long casts since you will not be able to get close to the fish without them seeing you.

Another challenge of wading is that you will stir up dust, make noise, and introduce scent into the water which will get their attention on you. Moreover, there is always the danger of stepping on other fish, like sea urchins, stingrays, and stonefish, which may cause serious injury.

Tips For Permit Fishing
Tips For Permit Fishing

Permit Fishing Tackle

You don’t need any high-tech or expensive fishing gear to catch permit. A 7-foot medium light fishing rod and a medium spinning reel with a 20 lb braided line will get the job done. Use a fluorocarbon or monofilament leader and a 2/0 – 4/0 circle hook.

Permit Fishing
Permit Fishing

How To Catch Permit In The Keys

When fishing for permit in the Keys, look for areas of the water with current. Rips, ruffles, seams, and bumps will be areas where you can find permit. Additionally, these areas provide cover for permit and keep it safe from predators. Shrimps, crabs, and crustaceans are some of the baitfish that they eat. Baitcasting and fly fishing are fishing methods used when fishing for permit.

Best Bait For Permit

  1. Crabs (Live or dead)

Permit diet consists of crustaceans and crabs make excellent bait.

2. Shrimp

Shrimps also work well as bait when fishing for permits.

3. Shellfish

Shellfish is another good bait when fishing for permit.

4. Sea Urchin

Sea urchin works well as bait for permit.

Permit Fishing Tips
Permit Fishing Tips

Permit Fishing Tips

1. Permit has good eyesight, sense of smell, and hearing.

2. Permit is a very suspicious fish that can ignore lures and flies even if they are right in front of them.

Permit Fishing Tricks
Permit Fishing Tricks

3. Permit can put up a long and stubborn fight when hooked. It will run back to structures when they feel resistance.

4. They are usually found around wrecks, rock piles, and grass beds.

Permit Fishing Ideas
Permit Fishing Ideas

5. Live bait, lures, and jigs can be used to catch permits.

6. If you see the tail of a fish sticking out of the water, that might be a permit feeding down. Get a fly in front of them to get a bite.

Permit Fishing Hacks
Permit Fishing Hacks

7. Fly fishing and baitcasting are two fishing methods used by anglers to catch permits.

8. Permits can also be found around reefs, inlets, and passes, along the flats, and surfing in the surf.

Permit Fishing For Beginners
Permit Fishing For Beginners

9. A permit is very skittish on the flats because it is not its natural habitat and it feels exposed. It can’t resist the flats because it is a good hunting ground for crabs.

10. You can also fish for a permit by wading.

Ideas For Permit Fishing
Ideas For Permit Fishing

11. Small shallow boats can be used for flats fishing. Always approach the permit from the down sun to avoid casting a shadow on the bottom in front of you.

Hacks For Permit Fishing
Hacks For Permit Fishing
What is the best bait for permit?
Live crabs, shrimp, shellfish, and sea urchin are some of the best bait for permit.
Do permit fish fight hard?
When hooked, permit will put up a long and hard fight and will run deep if the opportunity presents itself.
Do permit fish taste good?
Permit has a delicate taste when it is well prepared.
Are permit fish rare?
Permit is a common fish found around wrecks, reefs, along the flats, around inlets and passes, rock piles, and grass beds.
Does it hurt a fish when its caught?
Scientific evidence gives credence to the notion that fish feel pain. How they behave when injured and their complex nervous prove that they feel pain.
Are fish traumatized by being caught?
Many fish die after being caught and released. There are many reasons for this, ranging from poor handling to physiological stresses from the struggle during the capture and injuries sustained from the hook or the angler.
Why is it called a permit fish?
Its name comes from a Latin adjective that means “armed with scythes”.
Beginners Tips For Permit Fishing
Beginners Tips For Permit Fishing

The Bottom Line

A permit can be found along the Atlantic from Massachusetts to Brazil. It is an elusive fish with great eyesight, a good sense of hearing, and smell. A permit can be frustrating to catch at times as it has the habit of ignoring bait, especially dead crabs, even if it is right in front of it. When hooked, it will put up a long and hard fight, even running deep if it can do that.

In this article, we share information about catching permits like fishing methods, their behavior, fishing tips, and the equipment needed to catch it.

If you are also interested in other fish like hogfish, garfish, and bonefish, you can read these articles on how to catch hogfish, how to catch garfish, and how to catch bonefish.