Cobia fishing is one of the most exciting and popular sports fisheries on the east coast. These fish can reach lengths over four feet and weigh up to sixty pounds, making them a challenging catch for even the most experienced angler. If you’re looking to add some excitement to your fishing trips this season, read on for tips on how to catch cobia.
Where To Find Them?
Cobia is a very popular game fish around Florida and it seems that almost every year, more people are finding out about this great sport fish.
For those that may not know what cobia are, they are large members of the grouper family that can reach up to 200 pounds. They are very exciting sport fish because they put up a great fight for their size and you can find them all throughout Florida’s coastal waters.
There are a lot of popular fishing areas where you can find cobia during this time throughout Florida including the Jupiter Inlet, Melbourne Beach, Charlotte Harbor and The Gulf Stream. Each of these locations offers amazing opportunities to catch a monster cobia from shore.
In fact, South Florida in particular is full of places and platforms for people to look and catch cobia. So, if you like to fish from your favorite boat, you can find many great opportunities all around the Palm Beaches, Fort Lauderdale and Miami.
When Is The Best Time To Catch Cobia?
Cobia season usually runs from March through mid-May and then again from July through September. Now before you get too disappointed, cobia can be caught all year long but the springtime is by far the best time to catch them.
The reason why we say that is because this is the time of year that schools of cobia migrate closer to land looking for food. They are easy to find by simply following dolphins which are more than happy to guide you in their direction. Cobia is also very hungry during this time of year as they are bulking up for the summer months of spawning where they can lay up to 1,000,000 eggs at a time.
How To Catch Cobia
There are so many other factors that need to be taken into account before you can actually set out for a fishing trip. And the most important of them all is choosing the right fishing gear.
The fact because there are hundreds and thousands of options in terms of rods, reels, line and lures on the market today, it’s no wonder people always get confused when they look to purchase them. However, in this article, I will highlight the different factors that would guide you when choosing the perfect rod for cobia fishing.
When choosing a fishing rod for cobia, it’s important to remember that you should never judge its strength by its size. With good technique and the right equipment, every angler can catch these giants of the sea.
Good Balance Between Strength, Length And Flexibility
If you are fishing alone or with friends, one of the most important decisions to make is selecting a good-quality fishing rod for cobia that is both powerful and flexible enough to handle these enormous fish without breaking under their weight. When it comes to length, most rods for cobia are between seven and fourteen feet long. And while it may seem logical to choose a longer fishing rod for catching larger, more powerful fish like cobia, this is not always the case. Embodying both power and flexibility, shorter rods allow you to apply less force when reeling in the fish. This means that even if they get away, you won’t lose them as easily because the quick actions of shorter rods produce less force on the line.
The materials used to make fishing rods can vary significantly, and each one has its own unique properties that should be taken into account when shopping for a rod for cobia. For example, graphite rods are lightweight and relatively inexpensive, but they don’t have much give or flexibility. Other common fishing rod materials include high-carbon steel, which is both lightweight and flexible but can become too brittle in colder waters. Therefore it’s best to use this type of fishing rod with fish that weigh less than fifteen pounds. Finally, there are also specialty rods made out of tungsten carbide, which are very expensive but are both incredibly strong and flexible. As such, they should only be used with large fish like cobia that weigh over twenty pounds.
A good choice for a fishing reel to catch cobia is one with high-quality ball bearings. This type of fishing reel makes it easier for you to set the hook and will be able to withstand the strong and acrobatic fight of this fish.
A good example of such kind of fishing reel is Shimano Curado 200, which has 10 high-quality ball bearings and a rotor with titanium nitride (TiN) coating that is corrosion resistant and very smooth.
Another good kind of fishing reel to use is one that has oil-felt drag washers – this will allow the angler to cast long distances and makes it easier for you to put pressure on this fish once hooked. You can also gain more control over the fish once it’s reeled in.
You should also consider purchasing a fishing reel with an adjustable drag system so you can adjust this depending on how heavy or light your catch is.
There is no one “best” fishing line that works well on every fish species under all conditions. Instead there are many lines designed specifically for different species of fish in different locations around the world. That’s why it’s important to find out what kind of fishing line is best for the fish you are looking to catch.
Cobia are members of the drum family, which includes stripers, redfish, weakfish – all predatory fish that like to eat other fish. That means their mouths are designed for slashing and tearing rather than the hard bites of bream or bass. This means they won’t hold onto lures or bait long enough to be caught by rod and reel.
Cobia are ambush predators and will lunge at a topwater lure as soon as it’s anywhere near their field of vision, then slap the surface with their tails as they engulf the prey. It won’t take long before even a quality braided line is weakened by cobia’s slashing teeth.
What this means for fishing for cobia is that you need a line that can both get your bait or lure into the strike zone and then hold up to repeated strikes, all while not breaking from the stress of casting heavier lures.
The best fishing line for catching cobia is monofilament due to its ability to stretch and give when a fish bites so it won’t break off. This is called “stretch” and happens when a fish takes the bait or lure and the line goes tight. It’s important to have some stretch in your line so it can absorb the shock of a large fish and not snap, especially with rough fish like cobia that will emit sudden bursts of speed when attacking your offering.
Fishing with lighter tackle lets you feel the action better and lets you set the hook easier on a fish since it takes less muscle to move the rod tip. Fish are cold-blooded creatures, which means they cannot regulate their body temperature. When they are cold, they become lethargic and hard to get to bite – or even notice your offering in some cases.
There are many great baits that will work for catching cobia. If you are fishing in the surf or at a pier, then sand fleas are usually your best bet. You can either purchase them, which may be difficult since they are not sold everywhere, or do what some people have done by putting flour down on the beach and sprinkling fish blood and guts around it. You will be amazed by how many sand fleas come to the area because of the fish blood and guts. If you choose this route, just remember that you will have to do it before dawn because not as many people notice it during those times.
If you are going offshore for cobia, squid is a must. These fish go crazy over it and you can get them to bite just about anything that has squid on it. Another good bait for catching cobia is the sardine. This bait works great for cobia year-round, but is best in the summer months when they are near or inshore. It is usually best to use fresh bait, so try to get it as close to the fishing area as possible. There is nothing worse than catching cobia with old bait that has been on ice for days. You will catch enough of them every once in a while, but not often enough to justify using bad bait.
Cobia loves crabs and will readily bite a crab imitation even if there are no visible signs of crabs around. If you are line fishing for them, then bloodworms, pogies, herring and mullet will usually work very well. You can also use blue runners or menhaden to catch cobia. If you are using live bait, then just about any fish that is small enough to fit on your hook should be good to go.
Cobia fishing can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it is important to remember the tips we’ve shared in order to make sure your trip is successful. With a little knowledge and preparation, you can make your next fishing trip a success.