Porgies and b-liners as bait

Any good for middle grounds grouper? Thanks!
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Replies

  • suprastevesuprasteve Posts: 88 Greenhorn
    Not to be a downer, but I believe it isn't legal to use reef fish as bait. Both are considered reef fish, but "hypothetically speaking" I'd think they would work.
  • JohnABJohnAB Posts: 135 Deckhand
    Looks like you are correct..thanks. Oddly, I've been on a headboat trips where they encouraged the use of b-liners for AJ's and I've seen them butterflied ; hence my question.
  • suprastevesuprasteve Posts: 88 Greenhorn
    We won't mention any names. I've also heard that little lane snapper make great bait. Must've been in the Bahamas or something...
  • andrewthe1andrewthe1 Posts: 271 Deckhand
    I understand they have to be legal keeping size and go towards your bag limit?

    I have also "heard" they make great baits, the bigger the better, if you think its too big, your hooks too small :)
  • CaptJCaptJ Posts: 452 Deckhand
    Used to commercial fish grouper and can tell you that B-Liners were the go-to bait. Used to call them Gold Fish.
  • Soda PopinskiSoda Popinski GrovelandPosts: 6,786 Admiral
    CaptJ wrote: »
    Used to commercial fish grouper and can tell you that B-Liners were the go-to bait. Used to call them Gold Fish.

    I've heard back in the day goldfish were the best bait there is for largemouth bass. But again, pretty non-legal.
    People use statistics the way a drunk uses a street light, for support rather than illumination.
  • Kokosing LoverKokosing Lover Posts: 350 Deckhand
    andrewthe1 wrote: »
    I understand they have to be legal keeping size and go towards your bag limit?

    I have also "heard" they make great baits, the bigger the better, if you think its too big, your hooks too small :)

    Nope. Using "reef fish" for bait is forbidden (at least in federal waters, not sure about state) no matter if it is within your bag limit. The size/bag limit for bait applies to things like spanish mackerel and such.
  • capciofficapcioffi Posts: 798 Officer
    They are great bait, call them "GUM DROPS".
  • CountryBumpkinCountryBumpkin Fla. Piney WoodsPosts: 1,211 Officer
    Nope. Using "reef fish" for bait is forbidden (at least in federal waters, not sure about state) no matter if it is within your bag limit. The size/bag limit for bait applies to things like spanish mackerel and such.

    I'm pretty sure that although you are correct for Gulf waters......South Atlantic doesn't have that "reef fish" blanket wording.

    Not unless they added it here recently.

    I say......I say son.......new & improved my tail feathers.

  • Kokosing LoverKokosing Lover Posts: 350 Deckhand
    I'm pretty sure that although you are correct for Gulf waters......South Atlantic doesn't have that "reef fish" blanket wording.

    Not unless they added it here recently.

    West Central thread, so we're talking Gulf.
  • AlwaysLearningMoreAlwaysLearningMore Posts: 31 Greenhorn
    In Gulf of Mexico Federal waters, it's illegal to use for bait for recreational or commercial fishing: whole or cut, live or dead, fish that are being managed by the reef fish Fishery Management Plan. A lot of people just say "reef fish", but that's not really accurate. To answer the OP's question about using beeliners (vermilion snapper) and porgys as bait: vermilion snapper are illegal to use as bait because they are in the Fishery Management Plan (size limits, bag limits, etc.). None of the porgys are currently in the FMP in the Gulf, so all of them are legal for use as bait. I believe that red porgy may have been in the FMP at one time, but it has been removed?? The list of managed fish does change sometimes.
  • XafXaf Posts: 924 Officer
    I think it is a sad state of affairs when you have to worry whether fish (that have been used as bait for years) are legal to use as bait or not. Just sayin.
  • clarosaclarosa Posts: 520 Officer
    Xaf wrote: »
    I think it is a sad state of affairs when you have to worry whether fish (that have been used as bait for years) are legal to use as bait or not. Just sayin.

    I 100% agree with you. Vermilion snapper are more plentiful than white grunts yet are protected from being used as bait? So how would the fwc ever enforce this law and or prove this? Literally impossible barring they come up on you with one butterflied on your hook or something.
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 2,345 Captain
    In federal waters, different from state waters, we cannot 'legally,' quote legally, use reef fish for bait. Is it done? What do you think?
    If the truth be known Vermilion snapper (B liners) are excellent bait.
    In my 40+ years of deep see fishing I have been boarded by the FWC one time, that was the first day of red snapper season this year:
    FWC%20boards%20florida%20Fisherman%20-%20Copy_zpscfesyzvg.jpg
    They could care less what we were using for bait.
  • lukkyracerlukkyracer Posts: 432 Deckhand
    I read the FWC reports regularly and the do write tickets for using reef fish for bait.
  • CyclistCyclist Posts: 21,693 AG
    Mmmm porgies and beeliners are better eating than grouper.....:) or at least as good.
    133cbf2b243368b1ddb2f591a1988076--beach-posters-florida-travel.jpg
  • drgibbydrgibby Posts: 1,153 Officer
    Cyclist wrote: »
    Mmmm porgies and beeliners are better eating than grouper.....:) or at least as good.

    And canned tuna tastes just as good as fresh Yellowfin or Bigeye...........
  • CyclistCyclist Posts: 21,693 AG
    drgibby wrote: »
    And canned tuna tastes just as good as fresh Yellowfin or Bigeye...........

    Nope...

    Porgy is sustainable and awesome. It's the next! big fish...

    Although beeliner is better. :wink
    133cbf2b243368b1ddb2f591a1988076--beach-posters-florida-travel.jpg
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 2,345 Captain
    Unless things have changed recently we can use reef fish for bait in state waters, but not federal. Any reef fish used for bait in state waters counts against ones possession limit.
  • clarosaclarosa Posts: 520 Officer
    lukkyracer wrote: »
    I read the FWC reports regularly and the do write tickets for using reef fish for bait.

    But what I am saying is, how would they ever know you were using a reef fish for bait? I am curious how many tickets have been written in the past year for said violation. Being that it would be nearly impossible to prove that something was used as bait, I just don't know how it would/could be enforced.
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 2,345 Captain
    About the only chance would be if a longer-liner was checked.

    download_zpsuc7k6jer.jpg
  • SaltygatorvetSaltygatorvet TallahasseePosts: 1,747 Captain
    clarosa wrote: »
    But what I am saying is, how would they ever know you were using a reef fish for bait? I am curious how many tickets have been written in the past year for said violation. Being that it would be nearly impossible to prove that something was used as bait, I just don't know how it would/could be enforced.

    If someone doesn't know the law, gets boarded and has undersized reef fish that they are using for bait and spills the beans, not knowing what they did was wrong. Happens occasionally with sea bass up here. An fwc officer told me that is why they increased the minimum size.
    You should have been here yesterday
  • lukkyracerlukkyracer Posts: 432 Deckhand
    clarosa wrote: »
    But what I am saying is, how would they ever know you were using a reef fish for bait? I am curious how many tickets have been written in the past year for said violation. Being that it would be nearly impossible to prove that something was used as bait, I just don't know how it would/could be enforced.

    It usually happens when they board your boat while fishing and they find reef fish in a cooler that have been cut up in bait sized chunks. It's often the commercial guys/long liners as Harbison said.
  • clarosaclarosa Posts: 520 Officer
    lukkyracer wrote: »
    It usually happens when they board your boat while fishing and they find reef fish in a cooler that have been cut up in bait sized chunks. It's often the commercial guys/long liners as Harbison said.

    Roger that...I guess I could see that. I mean, I've been on certain headboats with fwc biologists on board and reef fish baits were being used...what they said was that they just had to be legal size limit to use as bait and they count against your limit. I'd still be curious as to how many citations have been given out to rec anglers for that violation
  • CyclistCyclist Posts: 21,693 AG
    I have been at bait gathering spots out from St Augustine where the boats were so close, over a dozen, you could see most everyones sobikis and what they were dumping into their live wells.
    133cbf2b243368b1ddb2f591a1988076--beach-posters-florida-travel.jpg
  • XafXaf Posts: 924 Officer
    clarosa wrote: »
    Roger that...I guess I could see that. I mean, I've been on certain headboats with fwc biologists on board and reef fish baits were being used...what they said was that they just had to be legal size limit to use as bait and they count against your limit. I'd still be curious as to how many citations have been given out to rec anglers for that violation

    I don't know how many people they cite but I know it can be costly. Several years ago a friend came in from a day off shore and made the mistake of leaving a legal size butterflied beeliner laying on the deck. FWC just happened to be at the ramp and cited him for using it as bait. I never did hear the final outcome but I know he spent thousands on a lawyer trying to beat the citation.
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 2,345 Captain
    :fishing Often the hard working, dedicated, FWC biologist accompany us on the Florida Fisherman ll. They are most welcome. They have absolutely nothing to do with law enforcement.

    00d83462.jpg

    "I've been on certain headboats with fwc biologists on board and reef fish baits were being used...what they said was that they just had to be legal size limit to use as bait and they count against your limit."

    True only if fishing in state waters.
  • AlwaysLearningMoreAlwaysLearningMore Posts: 31 Greenhorn
    If you really want to split hairs, you can't legally use some reef fish for bait in state waters either, unless you use them whole. Using them as cut bait puts you in violation of the rule that requires landing these fish intact if they are regulated by a size limit. This came up a few years ago when guys were using mackerel plugs (Spanish mackerel with head and tail cut off) as tarpon bait. That's illegal.
  • suprastevesuprasteve Posts: 88 Greenhorn
    TOO MANY RULES!!!
    *Bangs head on table repeatedly*
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 2,345 Captain
    :banghead "TOO MANY RULES" Absolutely! If you look 'deep' enough you could probably find where it's illegal to spit in the water.
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