We got our start catching sharks on Miami Beach’s South Beach pier decades ago but Land based shark fishing as it called today has evolved since we started in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s.
The group of hardcore shark fishermen that fished the pier back then were mostly local South Beach youngsters but many were drawn like magnets from other parts of Miami to the shark fishing frenzy that was spreading in the news media. Then the movie ‘Jaws’ hit the big screen in 1975 and it created the perfect storm of opportunity and adventure for the young shark fishermen on that old rusty concrete pier open 24 hours a day free to get on- no rules, no security just a pier a beach and big sharks to tangle with swimming right off the end of the pier. Any teenager wanting to get involved in shark fishing from land in south Florida had to come prove his grit at the South Bach pier it was the mecca the place to make your mark.
Today the world has changed land based shark fishing has grown in leaps and bounds and the sharks that were wrongly killed for bragging rights ,for pictures and to weigh on a scale are 99% of the time released to fight another day. We have seen the sport of shark fishing evolve from what was once a blood sport to a catch and release sport practiced around the world by thousands of enthusiastic anglers who can learn quickly on social media all the ways to fish for sharks methods,baits, tackle, local spots all because the internet has made the
information available to anyone willing to look.
More than ever the sport of land based shark fishing has grown and is in many places having to deal with new and tougher Regulations set in place to protect sharks and promote the conservation of sharks. With the evolution of social media today you can catch a shark take pics or video right from your cell phone and post your catch in an instant on many of the available platforms including Facebook and Instagram. Tackle for catching big sharks has improved greatly and methods have evolved to make the catching and releasing sharks quickly and safely the accepted norm so that a caught shark survives after being released.
It is important in this day and age to protect the sport of land based shark fishing from the authorities that often take a negative stand against the sport from local beach goer complaints.
We have had to fight from being banned or over regulated into extinction by the many governmental agencies in local seaside communities quick to pass regulations to curtail our style of fishing. With this being said, it is very important to ensure that a shark being released will survive after their release, we don’t want a dead shark washing up on any beach. For that purpose, circle hooks are encouraged and Law in many places, and sharks should be subdued as quickly as possible and released as quickly as possible using dehooks or bolt cutters. By teaching the newbie sharkers the best way to release sharks we protect the sport we love.
We hope to be able to practice our sport in a new smarter and safer way
without the threat of being banned.