More and more of the country’s coastline is being developed as people realize their dream of living near the water. All this residential growth along the coast leads to the installation of more and more private docks. Those whose love of the water combines with their enthusiasm for the sport of fishing find themselves entering into a new era of residential dock fishing from their own backyards. Dock fishing is now recognized by many as a great way to catch fish. It also helps lessen the impact on our waterways by keeping some motorboats off the water and some fishers in close quarters to a fishing dock.
Here are some of the best tips we’ve heard from expert saltwater fishers and dock fishing enthusiasts.
Dock Fishing: 5 Tips for Saltwater
- Use the right gear. When using a fishing dock, it is important to have the right gear for handling in a semi-confined area. For example, size down to lightweight gear for bass.
- Capitalize on piers and pilings. Cast from about 15 to 20 feet away and skip baits under piers and next to pilings. To get right next to a piling, cast on top of the dock, pull the bait off slowly and let it sink next to the pylon. This is an excellent strategy for bass fishing.
- Target the down-current side of a fishing dock. The reason to target the down-current side of a dock is that ambush feeders lie with their head into the tide.
- Scope out holes under and around docks where flounder hunker down. There may be a trough or some naturally occurring abscess around dock pilings that provide flounder with their ideal feeding habitat.
- Look for fish that eat clams and mussels which are often stuck to docks. For example, spotted bay bass, who are opportunity predators, attack food pushed past them by currents, but they are also happy to eat the clams and mussels that stick to docks. These spotted bay bass, also known as sand bass, stay hidden close to the dock and will dart out to get food and retreat back.
Floating fishing docks that are customizable, low maintenance, and good quality, like those made by AccuDock, are your best bet for success with any of these fishing methods.