Wednesday, August 13, 2008

How to fish a FAD

What is a FAD?
FAD's are classified as anything that attracts or aggregates fish, which gives rise to the term FAD (fish aggregation device or fish attracting device). They have been around for thousands of years and reports of anglers using FAD's date back to 200 BC. Mediterranean fishermen tied reeds together and floated them to attract mahi mahi and islanders of the Pacific and Indian oceans used rafts and palm leaves to attract tuna and other tropical fish.

In modern times Hawaii was the place the modern FAD's gained popularity and now many governments and fishing organizations in different countries have sunk large objects with special floats and buoys attached to attract fish.

Which fish are attracted?
In tropical waters baitfish are the first attracted and this brings in the medium predators like mahi mahi, tuna and other tropical fish. These species, in turn, attract big predators like marlin and sailfish.

How to fish the FAD's
You would think with all the great fish these attracting devices bring that the fishing would be easy, but it still takes careful preparation to catch the fish. Many anglers troll a spread of lures around the FAD, which can be a very successful method. Most lures types will catch fish. Other anglers like to cast lures (such as metal slices and surface lures) towards the FAD and crank the lure back to the boat quickly. Bait fishing can also be good around the FAD's and live bait caught in the area is usually the preferred option.

It is important to remember that fish can hold off the FAD slightly and it is not necessary (or polite) to park your boat right on top of the FAD!


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