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Have you always wanted to fish for sturgeon on the West Coast? Would you like to learn how to catch sturgeon? Sturgeon grow to be very large, and strong and are known to leap out of the water. Sturgeon has a good sense of smell and taste but poor eyesight. In this article, we discuss the fishing technique, fishing tips, equipment, and behavior of sturgeon to help you catch sturgeon.
Table of Contents
How To Catch Sturgeon
When fishing for sturgeon, rig up the bait and cast it to the bottom, put the rod in a holder, and set the reel to free spool. Keep the bait at the bottom and wait. With the bait at the bottom, the scent will be permeated into the water and it will attract fish. Patience is a critical virtue to have when fishing for sturgeon.
Sturgeon Tackle Setup
When fishing for sturgeon, the fishing rod should be 6 to 9 feet and be made of a single piece instead of a rod that is assembled. With the strength and size of the sturgeon, it can easily break the assembled rod when it is hooked. The reel should be rated for at least 80 pounds and have 250 yards of line. The tip of the fishing rod should be sensitive to detect the light bite of the sturgeon. Use a single barbless hook and not a barbed one.
How To Catch Sturgeon In Florida
Sturgeon is a bottom feeder and preys on squid, shrimp, shad, nightcrawlers, clams, crayfish, leeches, snails, insect larvae, and small invertebrates. When fishing for sturgeon, use a fish finder to locate them at the bottom.
Use bottom fishing, vertical jigging, trolling, and drift fishing to catch sturgeon. Learning how to catch sturgeon is not difficult. You just need to use the right baits, lures, and the right fishing technique. Moreover, the right gear is also important as well as locating them.
Best Sturgeon Bait
1. Sand shrimp
Sand shrimp, nightcrawlers, and crayfish are good baits for sturgeon.
All types of shellfish like clams and mussels attract sturgeon.
Crabs are effective when fishing for sturgeon.
Shad is one of the best baits for sturgeon.
Small fish like smelt work well as bait when targeting sturgeon.
Eels attract sturgeon making them an effective bait when fishing for sturgeon.
Herring, anchovies, shrimp, squid, nightcrawlers, and sardines are great for targeting sturgeon.
Anchovies, like herring, squid, shrimp, and nightcrawlers work well for sturgeon fishing.
Squid is one of the best baits for sturgeon.
Many anglers use roe or salmon eggs to attract sturgeon as it is irresistible for sturgeons.
Salmon is also a good bait for sturgeon.
Best Sturgeon Lures
1. Salmon Lures
Salmon lures work well for sturgeon.
Sturgeon Fishing Tips
1. Most sturgeon can be found in areas with access to saltwater bays and the open ocean.
2. Always have a good fish finder when fishing for sturgeon from a boat. If you are interested in finding the best fish finders, then read this review.
3. Finding the depths where the sturgeon may be holding out, and locating good resting spots, or feeding grounds on flats are important to successful sturgeon fishing.
4. If you find sturgeon in the water column, instead of at the bottom, don’t try to fish them as they are not actively feeding if they are not at the bottom.
5. Sturgeon will likely go with high tides into flats and tidewaters that are too shallow at low tides.
6. The best time to fish in tidal cycles is just before the tide breaks down or when it starts to come in again when the flows are softer.
7. When fishing for sturgeon in bays and straights, fish in calm and shallow waters when the currents are moving fast. Then move into deeper water when things slow down.
8. If the wind and tide are moving in the same direction, your chances of successfully catching a sturgeon increase.
9. When fishing for sturgeon, be patient. The scent of the bait will spread through the water as you wait and it will attract fish in your direction. Be ready to wait after making the first cast.
10. Sturgeon has a great sense of smell and taste.
11. Try to get bait that is fresh as much as possible.
12. Sturgeon feed mostly on slow-moving or freshly killed prey.
13. Sturgeon are not known to be too keen on chasing lures.
14. Sturgeon’s bite is very light, therefore, watch the rod tip very closely. The tip will bounce, but the line won’t start screaming off the reel.
15. Use sharp hooks.
16. Consider using a fighting belt when fishing for sturgeon.
17. Look for sturgeon around ledges, small channels, sand flats, and other rocky areas.
18. Sturgeon has poor eyesight and use its good sense of smell to find food.
19. Sturgeons are very sensitive to sound and use their lateral lines to pick up electrical fields.
20. When you feel a hard pull, set the hook as hard as you can, then set it again. Sturgeon’s mouth is hard to hook as it is rubbery and leathery.
21. Always carry a net that can take a very large fish.
22. If you catch a large sturgeon in a boat, release the anchor. Then follow the fish. It will be easier to land it when you are mobile.
23. When you want to release a sturgeon, point it into the current, holding it close to its tail. It will begin to swim away and then release it.
24. Get a fishing guide which will have the right gear and guide you with his experience and knowledge of sturgeon in the area.
25. Use a single barbless hook, not barbed hooks.
26. With sturgeon fishing, you drop the bait down to the bottom, wait, and haul in the fish when it is hooked. It is not precision casting, therefore, the important factor when sturgeon fishing is strength and not castability.
The Bottom Line
Sturgeon is the largest freshwater fish in the world. Sturgeon fishing puts your patience to the test more than you can ever imagine. It is a very large, and powerful fish. Sturgeon has a good sense of smell and taste. Fresh bait is the best bait for sturgeon fishing. The keys to successfully catching sturgeon are finding the resting spots like holes or feeding grounds and the depths where the sturgeon are holding out.
In this article, we discussed the fishing method, equipment, fishing tips, and behaviors of this fish that will increase your chances of catching it. If you also fish for other fishes like wahoo, amberjack, paddlefish, and Mahi Mahi, then read these articles on how to catch wahoo, how to catch amberjack, how to catch paddlefish, and how to catch Mahi Mahi.