Best Tips for Effective Red Snapper Fishing
Do you know that the red snapper is easily one of the most popular fish in the gulf? Red snapper is also the most popular snapper of all. Red snapper is naturally found throughout the world, but a majority of the fish harvests tend to come from the Gulf of Mexico as well as Indonesia. The fish has a firm texture with a sweet and nutty flavor, which lends itself perfectly to everything from subtle herbs to hot chilies.
However, because of their popularity, authorities keep their populations under close watch. This is why fishing for red snapper has been a tad difficult. The good news is that federal restrictions on red snapper fishing season have been relaxed recently, and this has renewed excitement for fishermen.
Red snapper is relatively simple to find, and quite delicious too! However, it can be a challenge to reel in. This is why for fishing fans around the globe, red snapper is one of the best fish to catch.
Red snapper do not migrate too far from their reefs and other established structures once they make them their home. Therefore, you are likely to find loads of red snapper if you can find structure in sixty to 200 feet of water.
If you are looking to score some red snapper on your next fishing trip, you will have to prepare the best way before you hit the water. These tips will help.
Use These Baits for Red Snapper
You have several options when it comes to snapper bait – remember that red snapper are opportunistic and usually not fussy eaters. It is worth noting that the natural diet of most Red snapper is mainly fish, squid, crabs, and shrimp. However, this depends on the season and what type of prey is available.
Note that soft baits are extremely effective with snapper. If you rig soft baits with a lot of room to move, it will make a huge difference, giving the best results. So, we recommend it. Casting up current will allow the soft fishing bait to gradually drift down through the water column all the way to the bottom. Some of the best baits for deep dropping are often fish and squid, depending on their availability, as well as readiness for the red snapper to take them off your hook.
On the other hand, the best live baits for snapper include mullet, cigar minnows, threadfin herring, pinfish, and large sardines. You can catch all of these baits yourself with a Sabiki rig or a cast net. And using fresh bait is always a great approach over frozen bait. This is because aggressive fish can easily tear them clean off the hook. Most snapper simply cannot resist yellowtail mackerel. Wondering why? The rich concentration of oil and blood drives them crazy. Besides eating them live, red snapper will take their chances when they are served dead, whole, stripped or butterflied.
You will find most bait at your local bait shop.
Find the Best Spots
Although you can find red snapper in shipwrecks and some other underwater structures, their natural habitats are usually in deep water reefs. But red snappers are both deep water as well as shallow dwellers. So, don’t worry. You will easily find them at any depth from 30 to 200 feet, often huddled by close protective structures. Some of the favorite hotspots include seawalls, piers, and old wreckage.
Here’s our advice. Do not start too far out from the shore. This is because you may get frustrated from spending plenty of time looking for those rocky floors. Also, note that while juvenile snapper live over sand or even mud bottom, most adult Red snapper tend to reside around some type of structure. These structures include rocks, natural reefs, ledges, wrecks, artificial reefs, and many other humanmade structures, such as oil platforms.
As red snapper often do not move around much after establishing a habitat, you should ask your captain for some recommendations before you launch. And if your captain does not have any recommendations, you can always use the Internet in order to search for deep-sea reef coordinates and ask your captain to take you there.
Choose a Suitable Fishing Line
You should preferably purchase a transparent line. Fishing lines made of fluorocarbon or monofilament are the best. Want to know why? Like most snappers, red snapper has great eyesight. And also remember that they have sharp teeth.
Wire leaders are totally out of the question, as their great eyesight will render them ineffective. No snapper will bite your bait if it has a big piece of visible metal clearly sticking out of it. Go for tackle and fishing lines in the 50 to 100 lb. class in order to handle the heavy sinkers. It is also worth noting that your fishing rod will certainly need a sturdy backbone and butt, and a sensitive tip. If you need more boost, you can attach an alarm bell on the rod’s sensitive tip for an additional indicator for when fish bite.
You will be better off using a braided fishing line due to its sensitivity, improved water resistance, and minimal stretch. And here is another consideration. You will also have to choose a line weight that can easily handle the potentially bad weather conditions, likely weight of the fish, and strong currents. For example, for a seven-foot rod and size-sixty reel, you should buy a 60 lb. line. You have to increase the line weight if you are using a larger rod and reel.
Summertime Is the Best
Are you wondering when the best time to fish for snapper is? The spawning season begins in the summer. Summer is ideal for two main reasons. Firstly, snapper are very hungry since they are in the peak of the spawning season. Secondly, during this part of the year, the seas are the calmest, which can make for excellent offshore fishing. The spawning season hits its peak in June and July. Consider federal and state waters, since they will likely have designated fishing seasons for snapper.
You will always like to be as prepared and informed as possible before you go snapper fishing, especially if you are spending hundreds of bucks on fuel and equipment. We hope that our tips help you do just that and make your trip memorable!