Birds that Catch Fish
birds and fish have a close relationship in nature. A keen fish observer is familiar with the behaviors of fishing birds. Many birds can be used as indicators of fish activity. For example, a good strategy for surf fishing is to look for diving seagulls, as there are likely to be bait fish and predator fish in the area. Diving snake birds can often be seen breaking the surface where there are schools of fish hidden in deep water. Ospreys aka fish hawks make for good look-outs and are often fishing for the same species as the human fisherman such as red bass, largemouth bass, and trout. A skilled fisherman can observe the behaviors of ospreys and determine where game fish are likely to be. The scene of an osprey in flight splashing down to snatch a live game fish from the water surface is majestic, and an inspiring omen for human fish observers.
There are also plenty of birds that are using humans to help them catch fish. This is the case with sea gulls and pelicans that congregate around commercial nets and fishing vessels. There are also more personable birds like tall herons and egrets that often follow fisherman around docks and boat ramps hoping to get a free meal from the live-well or bait bucket. Some birds can become pesky when they get too familiar by stealing bait. The sea gulls on Florida's coast are well familiarized with stealing from bags of frozen shrimp. Herons are also known to pluck bluegills and bait-fish right from a fisherman's bucket. Sometimes a bird that catches fish will attack bait-fish like shiners and mullet on a hook and bobber rig also. You never want to let a bird get near your hook, so the line must be pulled in when birds take interest in your bait-fish.
Some owls like the great horned owl will hunt for fish at night. Owls can swoop down and grab at fish near the surface or hop onto fish from water-side perches. A great horned owl was once observed striking a buzzing topwater lure in pitch black night and flying into the air with it before the fisherman knew what was happening. Fishing owls tend to hang out around old oak trees and calm waters where they have overhanging perches.
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Recent PostsRating: 5/5 Title: schoolby: Jim 2012-01-05
that is a nice shot of gulls diving on baitfish in picture 5. That is exactlly what I look for