Spring Fishing Spotlight: Cobia Come into Season

Jess KContributor IIIApril 6, 2011

MIAMI - MARCH 26:  Frank Dancevic (red shirt) aboard a charter fishing boat prior to the Sony Ericsson Open on March 26, 2009 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Marc Serota/Getty Images for Sony Ericsson)
Marc Serota/Getty Images

Every year as soon as the month of April rolls around, the cobia anglers get out their gear and head to the water in order to fish these magnificent animals.

You'll see the fish swimming just beneath, around and on top of the travelling sting and manta rays as they make their way up and down the coast.

Since cobia are extremely partial to any kind of structure found within the water, they are easily found near beaches and shorelines. They also consider other living creatures to qualify quite nicely as structure they can use for protection.

Cobia are extremely powerful animals, and if you ever have the opportunity to fish for this species, it is important that when reeling them into your boat you make sure they are sufficiently tired.

Far too many anglers have made the mistake of hauling one of these fighters right on board only to discover that they have a wild animal dangerously thrashing about.

Many injuries and broken fishing gear have resulted for fishermen who made the mistake of not tiring out the animal, so you must absolutely remember to be sure all of the fight is out of this fish before bringing it on board. 

As soon as spring begins, you'll start to notice that the cobia are out in full force along the beaches. As long as you can spot the manta rays or their moving structures, you will easily be able to find exactly where the populations of spring cobia are located.

The best bait to offer these fish are live baits such as menhaden shad and mullet. However, a black or darker-colored jig that has a similarly colored plastic worm of at least 10 inches can also be enticing to the hungry cobia.

As always, it is important to practice safe and sportsmanlike fishing.

Whatever you are sure you will not eat, return to the water unharmed. Be sure that someone knows where you are, and that you are not fishing alone.

Have a working radio or a cell phone on board, and always check the weather reports for that day. You never know when a sunny morning could turn into a stormy afternoon out on the water.