Diving into the sea with an intention to fish using nothing but your motor skills and a speargun. Could it possibly get any more macho than this? Probably not. This is exactly what spearfishing is- freediving with an intention to hunt fish using a speargun. Somewhat reminds me of Herman Melville and Moby Dick.
Besides the whole macho factor, spearfishing is not only a great sport but also a very effective way of catching fish. The excitement of relying upon your natural instinct and physical prowess to hunt and catch fish cannot be riviled by any other form of fishing. However there are other reasons as well why so many people prefer spearfishing.
Why do people go spearfishing?
For many of us, spearfishing is the best way to catch fish. Sure you could spread a fishing net and try to grab as many fish as you can, but that is not only a lengthy process, you also get a lot of unneeded stuff that the net has caught up. Others like to go fishing with a rod however the method is very slow, besides you are relying purely on lucky to see what kind of fish takes your bait. No an effective method at all. You could sit for hours and end up catching two small fish that will barely feed one person.
Watch this spearfishing video
Spearfishing on the other hand allows you to ‘select’ a fish before hunting for it. An experienced spearo (slang for spear fisher) will not shoot randomly at a cluster of fish but will selectively choose his target before engaging. This is one of the reasons why fish caught via spearfishing are much larger in size when compared with other methods of fishing.
It’s like going to the supermarket and selecting fish except in this instance, your fish is really fresh, has minimal carbon footprint not to mention the fact that the process of procuring fish using spearfishing is absolutely exhilarating.
This way you also know where your fish is coming from instead of wondering about how healthy buying frozen fish from the supermarket is. Since the whole idea of spearfishing is to target your catch first, you also end up avoiding wastage thereby doing a good deed for the environment.
Where can I go spearfishing?
You can fish in fresh water as well as salty sea water however it’s important to narrow down on the area where you will be able to find fish of the right size and in the right numbers. No matter how good a spearo you are, fishing a barren river won’t net you any catch. Before you proceed with this however, it is important to check with local laws and regulations to ensure that fishing in a particular water body is not illegal.
Getting started with spearfishing
As mentioned above, you can spearfish anywhere where there’s a water, non-prohibitive laws and plenty of fish. The beauty is that unless you need to go deep into the ocean or the river to find fish, you do not even need a boat to get into the water. For instance, most people who spearfish in the sea, just shore dive. This makes the whole process very economical. While boat diving does provide a better range and gives you access to better and larger fish, it is an added expense that someone just starting with spearfishing can often not afford.
Spearfishing experts often say that the best investment you can make before you get going on your spearfishing adventure is by taking some freediving classes. Not only will that teach you how to dive safely, you will better your skills in a matter of days and will be able to hold your breath for longer periods of time. As is obvious holding the breath is a very crucial element of spearfishing and the longer you can hold, the better catch you will able to hunt.
As you become a confident free diver, you will be able to broaden your hunting area when not to mention deepen the range to which you can dive. Can you imagine the lack of limits you will have when you become an expert freediver?
What do I need for spearfishing?
While it’s a rather simple ‘sport’ spearfishing does require you to buy a bunch of equipment. First of all, you need basic things to protect your body. This would include things like a snorkel, a wetsuit, fins and of course, a diving mask.
A snorkel allows you to breath when you are floating face down on the surface of the water. Imagine if you had to lift your head every now and then to breathe. Yep, that would almost be like a workout and rather taxing on the body. A snorkel makes the job easier.
A wetsuit protects you against creatures and elements (jellyfish, reef, rocks, seaweed etc) that exist underwater besides it helps massively in keeping your body warm. Many new divers do not realize how cold it can get after couple of hours of hunting and at deeper depths underwater.
Fins aid your body in swimming as smoothly as possible and the longer the fins you use, the longer the ‘kick’ you will get from each paddle.
When you are under water you need to protect your eyes and make sure that your vision is clear. Diving mask create a pocket of air in front of your eyes that lets in light and allows you to see clearly. Ever been in a pool? Then you know how things can appear distorted under water and why a diving mask is very important.
Dive weights to counteract the buoyancy of other diving equipment, such as wetsuits.
A hunter’s tools
Lastly, to go spearfishing you need a speargun. There are plenty of choices available on the market and you must choose one that best suits your expertise level and style. It is also a good idea to keep a dive knife handy to protect you against any unforeseen circumstances. For instance, you could get caught in a net or thick wad of seaweed and a dive knife will help you get free quickly.
Spearfishing is an amazing activity to undertake in your free time as, not only does it prove to be a great adventure, it also allows you to eat better. Are you ready to be a spearo then?