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Bow Fishing Tips

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Bow Fishing Tips

Bow fishing is an extremely popular sport in North America and a great way to spend the weekend away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Both fresh water and salt-water species are bow fished and the most common fresh water species are different types of carp e.g. bighead carp, grass carp, common carp, alligator gar, and paddlefish. In saltwater, rays and sharks are preferred. The popularity of particular specie of fish for bow fishing depends on the size of the fish, its availability in water bodies and the tendency of the fish to fight back. The common carp, grass carp bighead carp are native to Asia but were introduced in various habitats worldwide they are now thriving due to their remarkable ability to adopt to changed environment. Alligator gar is native to North America and can grow to almost 10 feet in length and weigh almost 300 pounds. Due to the presence of two rows large teeth in the upper jaw it is called the alligator gar they are found in large rivers lakes and bays.

Some of the places where bowfishing is a big thingis: around the great lakes, Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Erie, and Lake Ontario. Bowfishing is allowed all over the United States in small streams to large reservoirs.

Bow fishing equipment

Bow Fishing Boats - Choosing the right kind of boat is important for a successful bow fishing expedition. Generally, flat bottom boats made of aluminum and fiberglass are recommended Aluminum is light and can be fabricated and customized easily to suit ones requirements. It is easier to repair and cheap. Maneuvering is easy in shallow waters and getting around obstructions is no problem for aluminum flat bottom boats. Fiberglass boats are used in salt water, as it does not corrode.

The platform should be high enough to see ahead of your boat while driving and it is usually 16 to 18 inches high. Railings made of aluminum about knee high are recommended and these can be fastened by riveting or welding and are sturdy enough. The boat should be big enough to carry all the equipment line bows, bait, flash lights, generator, and fuel cans. Also the boat should be able to hold the weight of the catch if one has had a good day.

The other most important thing while considering a boat is its propulsion system the propulsion should be both silent and powerful enough.

Electric trolling motors are commonly used, if noise is not an issue and the water body is not over populated. Fish usually come to the surface at night in great numbers and having spot lights installed is a must. Purchasing a valid permit for bowfishing at night is advisable. The generator powered ones are advisable as battery powered ones increase the weight and are not as effective in night.

Bow Fishing Bows

Bows used for deer hunting are good. The range is not an issue as most shots will be 15 feet or less. The bow should be light and able to take repetitive shooting on a good day; 100 shots are normal.

Bow Fishing Reel

To make a good fishing day one needs a reel that can handle missed shots and investing a little extra in a good reel makes sense, as this results in the loss of fewer arrows. There are three types of reels. Traditional spool type reels are usually mounted to the front of the bow. These spool type reels cause a drag on the arrow as they follow it they are cumbersome. One has to hand-wrap the line every time before the next shot. The spool is about 8 inches in diameter and made of plastic.


These reels are better than the spool type and are mounted with an adapter on the stabilizer bar hole of the bow. Before every shot one has to release the bail by pushing the button; or the arrow is lost. If the target is missed just crank up the line and shoot again after releasing the bait.

AMS Retriever Bow fishing Reels

These reels are extremely user friendly. The Retriever reel is mounted to the side of the bow. The line flows out of the bottle after the arrow with literally no drag. In case the target is missed, the line can be cranked if the retriever line is stacked in a bottle.

Bow Fishing Arrows

Arrows are of three types: carbon, fiberglass, and aluminum. Fiberglass arrows are cheap and can be used by beginners. They are flexible and can take a lot of abuse as the fish flops and fights. Aluminum arrows are stronger and also expensive. The more serious bow fishermen use them. Carbon arrows are lighter and straighter resulting in quieter bows, a more stable flight and greater accuracy.

Bow Fishing Equipment

To avoid injury due to arrow snap back cable system or AMS ring sets are recommended.

Bow fishing point heads need to be strong to go through the fish and also hold on the flesh while retrieving the fish. Muzzy points are recommended as they are tough and can be removed and replaced, just turn the tip a couple of times to release the barbs and the arrow can be pulled from the fish. Shure shot fish points are good, but with less penetrating power, however pulling the fish on the boat is much easier. There are points available where the barbs collapse on penetrating and open up while cranking the fish.

Sunglasses depending on the conditions and the amount of glare choose from dark gray, medium amber and light gray lenses. Sunglasses with side shields offer additional protection and are recommended

Extras like sunscreen, fish containers, and fish boppers also recommended for a good fishing expedition.

Posted November 30, -1 by Justin Ott

All Information 2018