Giant Stingray Caught While Shark Fishing
<p>It was an exciting day fishing off the coast of Fort Lauderdale today for the Fishing Headquarters. We had a group that wanted to go out and do a shark fishing charter. Shark fishing is great this time of year as the huge hammerheads and bull sharks make their migration down our coastline. There are hundreds of thousands of them that come through our waters and its all through a narrow strip of water about a mile and a half offshore of Ft Lauderdale.
So today we went out there and set up our standard bait spread. We fish 2 kites, each with 2 baits (a live goggle eye and a dead bonito). Then our bottom baits, usually a nice bonito with its backbone removed or a mackerel rigged the same. We spread the deep baits out by attaching one of them to a balloon and letting it away from the boat. This keeps the bait positioned at that depth and we can keep it away from the boat. The other bait, we drop straight off the back of the boat.
Our spread was set and we patiently waited for the bite. The bite came quick. We were fishing for only about 15 minutes when the balloon bait went down hard. The balloon submerged, just like a giant bobber and we were hooked up. The fish was heavy, we knew right off the bat it was a big one. It felt like a giant shark but it was fighting oddly, not like we were used to. Were thinking maybe a thresher shark, the shark with the super long tail. Or maybe a foul-hooked hammerhead.
A grueling 2 and half hours in the fighting chair later and the fish was finally close enough to see. 50 feet down below the boat, we could see a huge blue glow in the water but we still didn't know what it was. The fatness of it suggested a 2000 pound shark. A few more pump-ups & wind-downs and we got the leader. Now we saw it and we couldn't believe it. It had to be a 400 pound stingray. The wingspan on this thing was 8ft wide, no wonder it looked so fat!
We took a ton of pictures behind the boat and ultimately turned the sea monster loose. What a great catch. I've caught a few of these giant stingrays over the years and I don't think anything fights as hard as these things do. They are super-freaking strong. There are some sea monsters biting off the coast of Fort Lauderdale this time of year. You never know what you might catch out there. February through May is our prime shark season here in south Florida so come on down and catch a Monster!
Huge Stingray caught off Fort Lauderdale
About The Author: Captain Andrew Roydhouse
Company: Fishing Headquarters
Area Reporting: Fort Lauderdale South Florida
Bio: I am a 3rd generation fisherman out here off Ft. Lauderdale and have been fishing proffessionally all my life. My company, Fishing Headquarters, runs daily drift fishing trips, sportfishing privae and shared charters, night time swordfishing trips, and any other type of fishing you would like to try.