How to avoid sharks when fishing offshore

magicmarcmagicmarc Dallas texasPosts: 2 Greenhorn
Hi I'm new to this forum I was looking for information. I have been fishing a lot in the Gulf of Mexico AND here recently it seems that there is sharks everywhere.  there used to be sharks would stay in close maybe 10 to 20 miles from the shore but now if you go 100 miles off shore there is sharks circling your boat. I think it might have something to do with the loop current. I have been catching and releasing sharks and I have lost several expensive jigs and lures and hooks in the process. I'm not sure what is the correct way to release a shark that's hooked to a 200 gram jig with a treble hook. If you would like to share what your experiences are or how you would recommend releasing a shark that is terribly hooked on an expensive lure please post below.


  • brianbbrianb Posts: 2,364 Captain
    bolt cutters
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,703 Captain
    There is no correct answer for this in today's society but if you want your stuff back, you take it back. Otherwise you buy a fancy glove and dehooker and screw around with it for 15 minutes. 
  • Doc StressorDoc Stressor Homosassa, FLPosts: 2,449 Captain
    Use jigs with assist hooks. They're easy to cut. 

    I need to get a set of long-handled bolt cutters for sharks and barracuda. 
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,333 Captain
    We catch and release a fair number of sharks along the Gulf coast of the Everglades and they range from very small all the way up to ten feet or longer (bulls, lemons, blacktips and others)... We rarely ever give up a hook to one, using an 18" Arc De-hooker - they're no longer made but any longer hook remover will do just as well... The first trick is to mash down the barbs on your hooks - they'll work just as well - and be easier to remove... If we're deliberately aiming at sharks we never use circle hooks (a circle hook is much, much harder to remove from a struggling shark's jaw than an ordinary "J" hook...). Next if we absolutely don't want to mess with sharks we go to lighter mono or fluorocarbon leaders - no wire leaders - no sharks, mostly... Last all you have to do is bring the shark alongside - never ever try to bring one in the boat... then while holding the leader safely (no anywhere near those teeth) engage the hook remover then slide it down to where the hook is.  If one of my anglers is hooked up I make things a bit easier by grabbing a pectoral fin (the ones right behind the gills on each side and hold onto it to control the animal (and if I have to, I can actually roll the animal over onto it's back to give better access to where the hook is) then, one shot with the remover and we usually get our hook back... There's an old series on TV (maybe on you tube?) called the Madfin shark tournaments where the anglers are required to release their sharks for extra points - just watch one episode and you'll learn all you need to know about releasing sharks without losing a hook at all...

    If you can't remove a hook simply cut off the leader near the mouth and watch that shark swim away with your hook or lure  - it won't hurt one at all as long as it isn't in the gills.. and the hook won't be there at all in a few months... It's not un-common for my anglers to catch and release bull and lemon shark that have multiple rust marks in the corner of their mouths where they've worn hooks there before...

    As far as running into sharks offshore my best advice is once you've hooked one - simply move somewhere else if you're not wanting to encounter them... When sharks find a food source (your lures or baits) they'll just keep on coming if you stay there.... 

    Hope this helps

    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
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