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Chum or not to chum

Geno67Geno67 Posts: 148 Deckhand
For cobia.

I've never caught one. I've also never fished for them but that part is about to change. Any tips would be greatly appreciated.


  • Eric BEric B Posts: 134 Deckhand
    depends on where your looking for them. Come late March- April they will be migrating along the seagrass beds up around Tarpon Springs and North. Water is clear up there and they will be following big Southern Rays picking off crustaceans, and baitfish the ray spooks up. Look in 4-5 feet of water. You will not have time to chum them. It is a quick cast at the ray. They look like small sharks so if you see what appears to be a shark more than likely its a cob. This migration time is a BLAST!!! have fun with them! 
  • tailwaterstailwaters Posts: 122 Deckhand
    Although we do have some sight fishing opportunities for Cobia in my area (St. Marks) it is more productive to anchor on a big piece of structure. Preferable something that's in 20' to 40' depth range. The more relief the structure has the better. I know of several people who like to chum but I haven't seen much benefit in doing so. My normal spread consist of three rods rigged with decent size pin or pig fish. The kings don't seam to like them as much as say a threadfin which is why I prefer pinfish. Kings are also one of the reason I don't chum. Retying ever couple min can get old. My spread normally consist of 3 rods. One is fished on the surface with a balloon, another is free lined or with a little lead if the current is moving. On the last rod I'll use a 3oz sinker and fish it about 10' below the boat. I know it sounds odd to fish this close but it works. Your boat acts like an attractant to them. Think of it as piece of floating structure similar to a buoy. My guess would be 7 out of 10 hookups we get come from that rod. Don't forget to keep a pitch rod handy. You never know when one is going to swim by. This method works well in my area but maybe not so much in other parts of the state. Good Luck!

  • SloughSlough S.w. Ga./ St. JamesPosts: 5,349 Admiral
    Never chummed for them. Most I know sight fish for them. I just keep a rod ready while I am bottom fishing or trolling. 
    I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you
  • Soda PopinskiSoda Popinski GrovelandPosts: 13,278 AG
    Last year we tried chumming out of bayport for them in 10' of water.  caught an atlantic sharpnose and some seabass.  This year we'll be looking in the shallow water and runnin em down.  
    Like is like a Helicopter.  I do not know how to operate a Helicopter  
  • Geno67Geno67 Posts: 148 Deckhand
    I'll be in Apalachee Bay out of St. Marks NWR. Based on my grand total of about 6 months fishing there, the water is not clear more often than it's clear. I was able to barely see a nearshore reef in 24' once out of maybe twelve trips.
  • brianbbrianb Posts: 2,403 Captain
    The cobia in the Atlantic at least come with the bull sharks often. So we chum for bull sharks to get cobia. 
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