|About to land one|
Photo by Justin Mayer
The target for the day was spadefish. It is the fish I probably curse at more than any other. In the last three years, I've fed more spades than Asians eat rice. Their ability to strip a hook clean is almost as uncanny as their strength once it's finally hooked.
My personal best has been stuck at 12" for a while, so I really hoped to break that on this trip. But it started off with only a few the size of my hand and a bunch of little bait stealers.
|Kevin says Hi|
|Baby Black Sea Bass|
aka PunkassBait Stealer
I kinda think they're pretty cool looking though...
...but not as cool looking as these guys.
|Pretty little thing|
|Photo credit: Justin Mayer|
But on my next to last clam strip I hooked into what I was really hoping for. After watching Kevin's fights, I was dying hook one myself.
Inch for inch, spadefish are definitely one of the strongest fish out there. The second you hook one, there isn't that pause before it reacts like with some fish. It's absolute pandemonium from the split second it's on there, and their brute strength is phenomenal. They go completely spastic and ballistic at the same time. I love 'em! I can't wait to get back out and try again.
From what I understand, spadefish don't take forever to grow like big sheepshead, nor are they in serious decline like many other species, so I decided to take a few home. I made a few spade nuggets for the wee one...
|Natalie with the smile of approval|
And I had my panko breaded yummy deliciousness with veggies and of course...