South Florida Peacock Bass Fishing Adventures
The day started out hot and muggy, like most days in sunny South Florida.
We pulled up on a couple spots and caught a multitude of 1 to 2 pound schooling fish in the center of the canal, where it’s at the deepest point.
Then coming up to one of the final spots, Capt Dave shut off the motor and we drifted towards what he told us were annual bedding grounds for peacocks. We slowly drifted forward and we spotted a giant male and female bedding in a sandy spot, that was a foot or two off the canal wall just before the drop off with access to deeper water.
Using a white double tailed grub, Dave and my girlfriend told me I had to agitate them without spooking them away so I gently casted my bait just pass them and reeled until it was in the center of the bed and the male reacted by blowing it away.
I repeated the same technique persistently, the peacock finally struck out biting the bait. The presentation of slow retrieval and presenting it near the bed, enticed a reaction strike that was amazing.
To my surprise, the fish fought and ran much harder than expected, in the end my drag was not set loose enough for the power of this fish and the line snapped. Cursing myself and my amateur move, I tried to re-tie as fast as I could. To my delight I looked in the water to see my white grub swimming a way, so I used my hook that I just tied on to snag the broken off piece of line.
I reeled it in to eventually get my hands on the line, I then wrapped it around my hand in order to retrieve it as fast as I could. Yet another amateur move, I set the hook again and again which sent the fish into a frenzy. I was amazed by the shoulders on this fish, it sent me on a ride around the lake and almost caused me to go overboard. But my Captain Dave grabbed the back of my shirt to help balance and keep me on the boat.
When we finally were able to land this fish in a net, it was a MONSTER!
Just holding this size of a fish, with this many colors, amazed me! It was certainly my PERSONAL BEST peacock bass ever and I will not soon forget what it took to catch it.
It was so fascinating to release this fish, not only was he a giant, but I was able to watch this male go back to his bed and continue to protect it and join force with his girlfriend.