How bout the sardines?

I've been out a few times and saw hoards of sardines, but I can't seem to get them with a sabiki. They just won't pay it any attention, even when the hooks are tipped with squid bits. They're much too fast for a castnet. Anybody know of a reliable method to get them?


  • trs912trs912 Posts: 50 Greenhorn
    Just patience.  I've been casting my sabiki over the school so it sinks through it, sort of jerking towards me as it falls..  Generally just get one, maybe two, at a time.  It's slow, but I've been able to get some this way.
  • NitzeyNitzey Posts: 106 Deckhand
    My experience is with cigar minnows.  They readily bite small size sabiki's.  The simpler the better.  Fancy sabiki's do not work as well with cigar minnows.  Where do you see the sardines BTW?
  • GulfCoast1102GulfCoast1102 Posts: 51 Greenhorn
    I may be misidentifying them. I've seen them REALLY thick at the Army Tanks, and more recently at the Bayway Bridge Reef. I thought they were sardines, but maybe they're cigar minnows. Schools of several hundred. They go nuts over chum or fish scraps, but they're mighty weary of a sabiki rig.
  • trs912trs912 Posts: 50 Greenhorn
    I've been catching them in the ship channel.  Definitely sardines.  I've found cigar minnows in the same area on the bottom, but the ones on the top are sardines.
  • andrewthe1andrewthe1 Posts: 608 Officer
    we crushed the threadfin by the towers with the smallest Hyabusa brand sabikis they are way better than the "marathon" brand and only a dollar or something more.
    we need more internet money
  • Reel SpeedReel Speed Posts: 14 Greenhorn

    #8 hayabussa GREEN. throw the red away

    2000 Bluewater 2550 w/ twin 200hp ox66's
  • NitzeyNitzey Posts: 106 Deckhand
    It is possible to catch cigar minnows with a cast net.  But you need to be a pro at throwing a net.  I have watched guys who sell live bait.  They throw a 16' diameter net.  Mighty impressive to see such a large net sail out perfectly. 
  • SeaSearcherSeaSearcher west FlPosts: 11 Greenhorn
    Watched a buddy net cigar minnows with a baitwell net while they ate on a chum block on side of boat :) There were hundreds of them eating at it, got all we needed in minutes. 
  • jbsrqjbsrq Posts: 207 Deckhand
    Put a chum block out and or balls of tropical fish food then throw a big heavy net. 
  • Rich MRich M Posts: 1,035 Officer
    How heavy a sinker are you using?  IMO, a slow sabiki, or just jigging it isn't the best.  Use 2 or 3 oz weight and let that thing going zipping thru - they'll grab it on the drop.  Don't waste time jigging it - on the drop or nothing much of the time.

    I get the sabikis without those beads on 'em.  Never liked the beaded ones.
  • DBRYANDBRYAN Posts: 4,402 Captain
    I like using the one with fish scales on them. Works good on pinfish too.
  • Kokosing LoverKokosing Lover Posts: 470 Deckhand
    For sardines, threadfins and cigars the trick is to let the sabiki fall through the school.  They hit the lures on the drop much more eagerly than just jiggling it in their midst.  The other trick is that once you hook one, let it struggle for a second or two before reeling it in.  When they struggle on the line, it makes the other lures shake and twitch in a way that triggers the others to attack.
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