Skip to main content
Home Ten Thousand Islands General Fishing & The Outdoors

Cast Net Advice

Looking for suggestions for a cast net purchase to use in less than 8 feet of water to catch whitebait and Pins. I have one that’s too heavy for me to get it to open up well though it’s no problem for my 21 yr old son. Heading down to check Alaska next weekend to fish the outside. Heading down to Chokoloskee next weekend to fish the outside.

Any suggestions would be appreciated, thanks! 


  • MangroovinMangroovin Posts: 149 Deckhand
    8' with 1/4" mesh will get it done.  Barracuda makes some nice ones and good warranty on them.
  • 1outlaw1outlaw Posts: 1,888 Captain
    What he said! I have 3 of them! Cant beat the warranty.
    Jason :USA
  • L8RBRAL8RBRA Posts: 792 Officer
    Barracuda and dont look back. Stay away from everything else even if its half the price. Been there done that. 
  • Lostmen_DanLostmen_Dan Posts: 18 Deckhand
    Prefer a heavier net myself. Trick is to try not to throw it too many times! If only all days could work themselves out that way. In all seriousness a 1lb/ft net will get it done in that shallower water though more weight will let you stay on them better at depth. I've seen no issues up to 2lb/ft. Throw distance shrinks but that is rarely a factor for where we are catching pilchards and threadfins. Fish should be fired up after the storm for you, catch 'em up!
    Formerly lostmen dan. Not able to get back in the account but what else is new around here.

    3rd gen Floridian fishing Flamingo, Chokoloskee, the Keys and Tri-County area since 1988.
    IG - @danielrearle
  • SkiffinitSkiffinit Posts: 17 Deckhand
    I’ve got a 8’ humpback 3/8” mesh. Not sure the weight, it’s a little heavy but I love it. Had it for years. Looks just like a black pearl net.
  • MulletMaster239MulletMaster239 Posts: 873 Officer
    My best advice is to have an old school Cuban fisherman make you one.  Lucky for me I have one as a neighbor and good friend.  Anything less is total junk.  My friend made me several 7’ and 8’ nets that actually open to a full 14’ and 16’ diameter. I’d pay $1,000 if I had to for one of his nets before I would pay $50 for any company nets. With these companies today you buy an 8’ net, you get 9-10’ mono lines and a 12’ diameter tops that opens up in an ugly umbrella shape.  Chicken wire mesh from China.  Rope that is long enough for casting from high rise bridges. My neighbor’s nets effortlessly open flat as a sheet of paper in a perfect circle, no ugly umbrella shapes, no finessing tangles out due to the mono lines being 1-2 feet longer than the net. 

    Best cast net for the money I bought from a store was a 7’ fitec from Walmart for $35. Performed just as good if not better than more expensive nets I made the mistake of buying in the past which I ended up either throwing in the garbage after a couple weeks or giving away to some neighborhood kids.First time this man showed me his net collection I was amazed by how much better quality they are than what is available today. Never again will I buy a cast net from a company except for the cheap fitecs I use for throwing over oysters and shopping carts.  I really cannot say enough bad things  about what they sell today, the quality of nets and fishing hooks in particular have really gone down in the last 20-25 years.  At least that’s been my honest personal experience. 
  • thecawthecaw Posts: 39 Deckhand
    Skiffinit said:
    I’ve got a 8’ humpback 3/8” mesh. Not sure the weight, it’s a little heavy but I love it. Had it for years. Looks just like a black pearl net.
    If u are wanting white bait go with 1/4 mesh. The bait gets small in the summer those 3/8 mesh the fish get stuck in them and become a real pain
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,909 Captain
    I keep two nets on my skiff (but they only get used when the bait is thick...), an 8 footer with a 1/4" mesh and a 10 footer with a 3/8" mesh... The smaller net is for pilchards and generally working in less than five feet of water.  The larger one is for bigger baits and water depths up to about ten feet (mature pilchards, herring, finger mullet).

    The best tip I can give a beginning netter is to get a good look at your targets before you toss that net.  Smaller baits need that 1/4" net - larger baits need the larger mesh.  Nothing like a "christmas tree" in your net (100 or more small baits gilled by the net that need to be removed by hand...) to enforce that concept (another of those "ask me how I know" deals).  The finer mesh net will sink a bit slower so it's not much good in deeper waters - the bait will swim out from under it before you can strike... Good luck on whatever you choose
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • CaptjamesCaptjames Posts: 244 Deckhand
    If you were going to go with only 1- 6' net, would you go with 1/4" or 3/8"?  With a lot of lead, obviously. 
Sign In or Register to comment.
Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

Preview This Month's Issue

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Florida Sportsman App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Florida Sportsman stories delivered right to your inbox.


Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Florida Sportsman subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now