What's the secret of barracuda????

I was out at power pole reef on Monday , there were around 7 barracuda from small to huge hanging out around my boat.  I could bounce a live pinfish off their head with no reaction.  I tried live crabs, pinfish, shrimp and then went to artificial swim baits that I would cast way past them and reel as fast as I could.  are they Picky eaters?   would've been fun to catch one.  I did catch a bunch of spade fish (they were fun)  a couple blue runners and my very first goliath grouper.   Water was still a little sketchy even out that far with some dead fish and floating algae but had about 6 to 8 feet of visibility.   Anyone ever keep a spade fish to eat?  I caught a couple big ones I am normally a catch and release guy but occasionally will keep a fish that is suppose to be good to eat.


  • jmac7469jmac7469 Posts: 76 Greenhorn
    Slow troll a live blue runner past them. They'll eat it.
  • NoreastSalt3295NoreastSalt3295 Posts: 514 Officer
    Either troll the reef with diving plugs, throw loud topwaters around the boat, or the most effective is throwing a cuda tube way out, let it sink for a second and then crank it in as fast as possible. They're incredibly smart out there, they won't eat baits but they'll nail any fish you hook.
  • SerotoninSerotonin Cape CoralPosts: 152 Deckhand
    I've caught them while trolling. If you look at them they have large eyes and good eyesight. If the see you they won't bite
  • billfshrbillfshr Posts: 10 Greenhorn
    free line some white bait back to them.and dont forget some wire trace.
  • Firetruck1Firetruck1 Posts: 125 Deckhand
    I would agree with all, but bump trolling a live blue runner on a stinger rig is pretty much game on.
  • nhkevnhkev Posts: 41 Greenhorn
    I will try some (or all ) of this tommorow will let you know how it went thanks
  • Westwall01Westwall01 Posts: 4,883 Captain
    Spades are good to eat
  • albacizedalbacized Posts: 53 Greenhorn
    My more generalized question is - is there an actual explanation as to why barracuda are accessible to shorebound fishermen in SE FL and the Keys, but are mostly a boater's game on the SW side of the state? Or is it one of those 'just because' things? I fish SW FL far more often than I do other parts of the state and this is the only thing I miss from the other coast (that and catching albies aka 'bonita' off the pier in Juno beach)
  • nhkevnhkev Posts: 41 Greenhorn
    Went to power pole reef yesterday.  Almost caught a cuda on a blue runner ,.  Not sure where I should have placed the hook on the bait but I put the hook up through it's upper mouth.  Cuda bit blue runner in half but not the hook half .  Was the only one I saw .
  • SerotoninSerotonin Cape CoralPosts: 152 Deckhand
    That is very common in my experience. Hook in front, fish eats tail side. Hook in tail and the front half gets eaten. Stinger hooks help
  • Capt Dan MedinaCapt Dan Medina Posts: 653 Officer
    double hook stinger rig should do the trick... I run alot of single treble flatlines... put treble thru middle back of runner....
    www.SaltyFishingCharters.com 33 Ft World Cat Tournament Edition Catamaran
    Offshore Fishing Charters FT Myers, Sanibel, Captiva, Cape Coral
  • jmac7469jmac7469 Posts: 76 Greenhorn
    Like capt Dan said if running a single hook middle of the back. Typically we fish stinger rigs. With a 2/0 ssw owner hook in the nose and a #4 treble in the back half of the blue runner. Works on everything that swims.
  • nhkevnhkev Posts: 41 Greenhorn
    Not sure if was a red tide thing or not but the blue runners did not survive long  as bait whether I hooked them through nose or middle back.  I was using a spade fish  to try to lure a goliath and it survived for hours (ended up letting it go alive when no goliath bit)  but was lucky if blue runners lived 15 mins.
  • Rich MRich M Posts: 1,035 Officer
    Sounds like you are having a fun time.  You'll get one.
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