Oct 9, 2013, 9:08 AM
Post #1 of 1
We did not catch a shark fishing off the beach in Fort Lauderdale as the title suggests but it did catch your eye. What we did do was go fishing just 1.5 miles from shore with 3 people who shared the cost of a charter. Milos, Thomas and Mathew joined ranks on one of our split charters and as we usually do, we began trolling. On split or shared charters, we always want to catch everyone a fish or 2 before we attempt for something big. The reason is simple… We might only get one big bite. Now how would you feel if it wasn’t your turn?
Shark Fishing Fort Lauderdale Beach
It was a great day to be out on the water. There were some small rainstorms around but we barely got sprinkled on. And for the first time in weeks, the Kingfish were snapping. Some were too small to keep but we caught some nice sized ones too and they got tossed in the box. None of our guests had ever caught anything that big so we already had a winning trip. But the conversation rolled around to bigger fish and sharks. We decided to give it a try.
There are times conditions allow us to shark fish and bottom fish at the same time. This was our plan. The bite on big stuff hasn’t been great and bottom fishing gives us an “entertainment” rod to play with while we wait. So the shark baits were deployed and just as Adam was letting out the bottom rod, one of our balloons we use for bobbers went off. We pulled ahead but had missed the bite so we weren’t connected until the fish came back and ate again. This time he was hooked and we could tell by the run he was big!
Mathew got the call to be in the chair and we clipped the rod into the safety lines and began the battle. The fish had taken another 100 yards of line out on his initial run so we had over 600’ of line off the reel. And this fish was giving us nothing… Lifting the rod and winding it down was only getting us a few feet at a time. In these kinds of fights, patience is important. You take what they give you, there’s no muscling a fish like this to the boat.
After 20 minutes or so Mathew was beat so Milos hopped into the chair. Always important when someone new gets in with all his strength, he stays calm and smooth, no erratic hard pulls or this fish might be gone. Another 10 minutes and Milos turned the rod over to Thomas for a try.
Thomas was more interested in seeing what we had than catching it so he soon turned the chair and rod back to Mathew who would finish the fight. The fish had been on about 40 minutes and he was getting close but we hadn’t seen him yet. Then way down deep, Adam caught a glimpse of color… Silvery. But at 40 or 50’ down, it’s hard to tell, it could have been white as most shark bellies are. Finally, our first sighting of what we had on. A small eyed Thresher Shark was at the end of the line and he looked to be at least 11’ if not better. These sharks have a huge upper fluke on their tail, they use it to stun other fish. While most sharks just have one business end, this shark had two.
Thresher sharks are almost purple in color with bellies that are silver. They are also not big on posing for the camera and I’m afraid this was the best shot I was able to get. But they are magnificent creatures, fierce fighters and we were all delighted to watch this one swim away.
Our group was celebrating as we headed back toward the beach from fishing for shark in Fort Lauderdale. This one had not gotten away.
Capt. Steve Souther
Fort Lauderdale Off Shore Fishing