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Do I need a pinfish trap?

Old 07-31-2020, 10:25 AM
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Default Do I need a pinfish trap?

I know I can get them with hook and line.

But I'm wondering if I can be just as successful with a smaller "minnow" trap like this - https://www.academy.com/shop/pdp/h2o...dCatid=3841416
Old 07-31-2020, 11:53 AM
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Only if you want minnow sized pinfish and a rusted out trap.
Old 07-31-2020, 11:57 AM
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Google “Key West Pinfish Trap” - that’s the one you want. I like the bare galvanized metal over plastic coated. The trap you listed is too small and opening not big enough.

Yes, you can catch pinfish with hook and line, but it could take awhile depending where you are. Pinfish traps work great as long as you find a productive grass flat to set it up on. I’ll set mine out the night before a trip and usually have at least a few dozen pinfish by morning.
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Old 07-31-2020, 12:41 PM
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Canned cat food and a cast net works good on the grass flats around here. POS thieves will steal your pinfish and your traps.
Old 08-01-2020, 09:47 AM
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I seem to remember that the FWC regs actually tells you what your pinfish trap should look like. Some minnow traps might not be conforming... Small hare hook with about a 1/4' gap and just enough shrimp to cover it will catch a pinfish a minute or as fast as you can get them off and the bait back out in chummed up grass. I like using the trap to get the small ones for mangroves and the hook for the big ones for: Jacks, Tarpon, grouper, dolphin, cobia.....ect.
Old 08-04-2020, 02:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Pure Luck View Post
Canned cat food and a cast net works good on the grass flats around here. POS thieves will steal your pinfish and your traps.
Was in Marathon a couple of weeks ago and put out three traps one afternoon. Two were the regular style traps and one was the "Key West" style. Guess which one was missing the next morning! To add insult the "regular" style traps only had a few fish.

The Keys style traps are amazing and will fill up quickly (within an hour or two)
when placed in the right area.

We chartered one day and the captain went to pull three of his traps, two had no fish but the traps were there, one was loaded. All in the same area. Robbed!

He used a clear plastic water bottle for the float, small and looks like trash in the water.
We switched to that tactic and didn't lose another one all week. Use a large float or buoy and you will lose your trap.
Old 08-04-2020, 04:59 AM
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Originally Posted by signmansez View Post
Was in Marathon a couple of weeks ago and put out three traps one afternoon. Two were the regular style traps and one was the "Key West" style. Guess which one was missing the next morning! To add insult the "regular" style traps only had a few fish.

The Keys style traps are amazing and will fill up quickly (within an hour or two)
when placed in the right area.

We chartered one day and the captain went to pull three of his traps, two had no fish but the traps were there, one was loaded. All in the same area. Robbed!

He used a clear plastic water bottle for the float, small and looks like trash in the water.
We switched to that tactic and didn't lose another one all week. Use a large float or buoy and you will lose your trap.
Yeah, thieves suck! We used to use coconuts and random garbage as floats, but the thieves figure it out when the trash has a wake from the current. Plus around here, most of the grass is gone. It's easier and less stress to hit the bait shop and buy a few dozen pinfish now.
Old 08-04-2020, 05:45 AM
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Originally Posted by FOODCHAIN View Post
I seem to remember that the FWC regs actually tells you what your pinfish trap should look like. Some minnow traps might not be conforming... Small hare hook with about a 1/4' gap and just enough shrimp to cover it will catch a pinfish a minute or as fast as you can get them off and the bait back out in chummed up grass. I like using the trap to get the small ones for mangroves and the hook for the big ones for: Jacks, Tarpon, grouper, dolphin, cobia.....ect.
This is the way to go^^^^

You get better baits and they will keep well in a bait pen if you have decent water at your dock. Too many times have I had the traps robbed and empty or stolen completely.

Really sucks to be headed offshore in the morning to find out you have no live bait for the day.

Old 08-04-2020, 07:02 AM
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I guess it depends where you are. I like using them because it saves time catching bait, as stated above the size of the pins tends to be a little smaller. The galvanized wire ones are the ones you want.
Old 08-05-2020, 08:22 PM
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I use the “offshore” pinfish trap from Catchlivebait.com It was $50. Put it out around 1pm on edge of grass, mark it on chartplotter, place a blue runner or some trash fish butterflied in it, maybe squid left over from fishing. Return at 6 am or first light and it is full. I use a red/white float size of a softball, but rope is short enough that my float is a foot underwater at low tide. Use my gaff to hook rope/float to retrieve. Sometimes at high tide it can be a challenge (gaff is only a 4 footer) but if someone holds my legs I reach it. Once I just dove in and grabbed it with gaff then handed gaff to daughter on boat.

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