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Marco Island Bait Traps?

Has anyone tried catching their own bait in the Marco Island area? I was thinking of getting one of those crab traps to drop off my back yard dock (around 10' depth in the canal). It would be great to catch some of those little blue crab, not only are they often difficult to find, but they're really expensive. Sardines rarely come close enough to my dock to be able to use a cast net so I've been using sabiki jigs to catch them. Any ideas on better ways of doing things would be much appreciated. Many thanks.

-Gerry

Replies

  • IndianoutlawIndianoutlaw Posts: 550 Officer
    Do you have a smaller boat that you could run out with to place a pinfish trap?
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  • GerrymGerrym Posts: 7 Greenhorn
    Do you have a smaller boat that you could run out with to place a pinfish trap?

    Yeah I do, but where would I drop the trap? Are pinfish as effective as other baits like shrimp or sardines? If you could send me a link to the type of trap you're recommending I'd really appreciate it. Thx!
  • IndianoutlawIndianoutlaw Posts: 550 Officer
    I don't have a specific link, but it should just take a google search. Pinfish are the best baits for anything offshore IMO and are killer for slob snook and redfish as well. You can usually position those traps around any grass flat and have success. Let me know if you have trouble finding a pinfish trap online. I will do a little research then.
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  • strykeonestrykeone Posts: 89 Deckhand
    I have tried that idea and it was a flop so now when I want crabs I simply ride into the outgoing tide in the backwaters and get crabs swimming by. They can be found in places where the tides run well into the main open areas like caxambas Pass. As for sabiki rigs, that is still the best way for pinfish in my opinion, tip it with a small piece of squid and you will get them along with the occasional breakoff caused by one of those toothy spanish mackerals. If I can be of any help just let me know. I have some numbers for pinfish too. You can google pinfish traps or look at Bass pro but I think the sabiki is a better idea.
  • GerrymGerrym Posts: 7 Greenhorn
    strykeone wrote: »
    I have tried that idea and it was a flop so now when I want crabs I simply ride into the outgoing tide in the backwaters and get crabs swimming by. They can be found in places where the tides run well into the main open areas like caxambas Pass. As for sabiki rigs, that is still the best way for pinfish in my opinion, tip it with a small piece of squid and you will get them along with the occasional breakoff caused by one of those toothy spanish mackerals. If I can be of any help just let me know. I have some numbers for pinfish too. You can google pinfish traps or look at Bass pro but I think the sabiki is a better idea.

    Those Mackerals are brutal! ...so I'm afraid I'm not exactly sure what a pinfish is. What I'm catching with the sabiki jigs I'm calling sardines but maybe not? At any rate I looked at amazon and they have a pinfish trap that looks pretty good, what do you guys think? http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0001CVDD0/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&m=A1AI7GZA8NEZAX Worth a shot or not really? I was reading the reviews and they mention using bread or dry dog food for bait?

    So none of these traps will effectively catch crabs huh? I have caught them just like you said, with a net when I see them swimming around but very few. I'd like to be able to consistently catch my own bait.
  • GerrymGerrym Posts: 7 Greenhorn
    I don't have a specific link, but it should just take a google search. Pinfish are the best baits for anything offshore IMO and are killer for slob snook and redfish as well. You can usually position those traps around any grass flat and have success. Let me know if you have trouble finding a pinfish trap online. I will do a little research then.

    Found the one I mentioned above at amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0001CVDD0/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&m=A1AI7GZA8NEZAX
    Also found a site that has a bunch of traps for pinfish, crab, etc. http://www.catchlivebait.com/
  • strykeonestrykeone Posts: 89 Deckhand
    I suggest you google pinfish to see what they look like. You might be catching threadfins, what you are calling sardines or you might just be getting sardines.
    I for one would not want to set a trap for pinfish out in the gulf. It probably won't be there long and I doubt you have any at your doc but I could be wrong.
    Best method is trial and error. Can't hurt to try and you can learn at the same time.
  • GerrymGerrym Posts: 7 Greenhorn
    Quick update, I ended up buying the pinfish trap at Amazon and have had good results. I am dropping the trap off of my dock in about 10' of water (strictly out of convenience) but it's been pretty good. The pinfish bait of choice seems to be cat food; I tried cut up catfish, snapper heads, frozen shrimp, and frozen squid. I only open the can about 1/2" otherwise they eat it too fast. Timing seems to be the key, if you leave it too long (even if there is still bait) the pinfish are gone and all you have are blue crab (not a bad problem to have) but if you're looking for pinfish, I've had the most luck with about a 4 hour soak, in the morning, with a fresh can of cat food.
  • IndianoutlawIndianoutlaw Posts: 550 Officer
    Thanks for the update! Roughly how many do you have in that timeframe?
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  • GerrymGerrym Posts: 7 Greenhorn
    Thanks for the update! Roughly how many do you have in that timeframe?

    Avg about 7, max was 12. I know that's on the low end of the results others are getting in better locations but there's only two of us fishing so its not too bad.
  • IndianoutlawIndianoutlaw Posts: 550 Officer
    It's good to have a couple of pinfish handy on inshore trips. I had a buddy who took a 35 gallon trashcan, drilled small holes, fixed a pool noodle around the top, and kept bait (such as pinfish) for several days. You should try several "shifts" over the course of two to three days before you go out to see if you can accumulate a larger numbers of baits. Pinfish live well "in captivity" and that type of "pen" allows fresh water to enter. You could always add some food to keep them fed. Let me know if you try that as well.
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