Tips for Fishing in Belize
Some fun facts for the complete novice if fishing in Belize is on your mind:
The Maya people were probably the first to discover the importance of fishing in Belize, particularly snapper and anchovies.
Its true fish DO grow on trees. The shallow mangroves that make up much of the shoreline and lagoons of the Belize coastline are the breeding and feeding ground for thousands of crabs, sardines, lobster and baby fish which in turn provide food for the bigger fish .
During the months of March to June around the time of the full moon, mutton and cubera Snapper spawn off the coast of Belize in an area known as Gladden Spit. This aggregation in turn attracts the magnificent whale shark.
Whether it is Fly, big game, reef, flat, river or traditional deep sea, all types of fishing can all be done. Grouper, snapper, jack, barracuda, sailfish, marlin, tuna, wahoo, tarpon, permit, bonefish, and snook are some of the more common targets. There is however a catch and release policy on bonefish, tarpon and permit.
Belize is one of the few places that you can realistically achieve a Grand Slam (Tarpon, Bonefish and Permit) in one day.
Bonefish are considered to be one of the most powerful fish for their size. They generally run smaller in Belize (between 2 – 8lbs) than in other countries but they are very abundant in our waters.
Tarpon which are considered one of the most acrobatic gamefish can grow as large as 7 feet long and weigh up to 200lbs (that’s the size of a grown man). They are affected by the moon phase more than any other fish, with the best time for them, around the New Moon.
“Mudding” is the term used to describe the fish stirring up the sea bed as they feed. They create a cloud (often visible from the air), which gives them a sense of security, all the easier for the fisherman to catch them. As you fly back and forth between the islands of Belize, it is not uncommon to see these muddles, often with a Manatee in the middle.
The stunning yet deadly lionfish has both a poisonous sting and an insatiable appetite which make it one of the biggest threats to the Belize Barrier Reef. In a pro active effort to lessen their population, fishing for them is encouraged. Local fisherman have been taught how to handle their spines and filleted they are surprisingly delicious.
-Belize Chocolate Company