While most of us have been trained to think of sharks as perfect killers on a constant hunt for human flesh, many are beginning to turn the tables on the fearsome fish. That’s because commercial and recreational shark fishing is on the rise in the United States. From the shores of the northeastern U.S. down to the Florida Keys, and from the Gulf of Mexico out to the California coast, America’s taste for the ultimate catch has been steadily increasing over the past few years.
Some attribute this to rising ocean temperatures causing sharks to move into more populated areas, which increases their accessibility for recreational fisherman—as well as the rate of shark attacks worldwide, but that’s a different story. Whatever the reason may be for the rise in shark fishing, the fact of the matter is the fishin’ is good. So here are a few of the best locations for your next shark fishing adventure:
- Texas – From Galveston to Corpus Christi and all the way to the border, the western shoreline of the Gulf of Mexico offers endless opportunities for anglers looking link up with a wide variety of shark species including blacktip, bull, tiger, hammerhead, Atlantic sharp nose and lemon sharks.
- Florida – Whether you’re looking for excellent land based shark fishing, or world-class deep sea fishing charters, the sunshine state is the number one destination in the country for tangling with the ocean’s most feared predator. In fact, Florida is such a shark-magnet, it’s beaches consistently rank among the most shark infested waters on the planet. And when you’re fishing in Florida, your options are pretty wide open as there really aren’t any bad locations along it’s lengthy coast. Common species include black tip, black nose, spinner, thresher, lemon sharks, hammerhead, bonnethead, and nurse sharks among others.
- New Jersey – As the water warms up down south, the sharks start to head up the coast, which has sportfishermen on the Jersey Shore licking their chops during the late summer months. Common species in Jersey waters include mako, thresher, blue sharks, hammerheads and tiger sharks—as well as the occasional great white, which cannot be kept due to its inclusion on the endangered species list.
Remember, whether you’re a seasoned angler, or a complete newcomer, safety should always be your number one concern. These animals are unbelievably powerful, and even though you might think that not being in the water with them means you’re safe, anything can happen, so don’t go into it thinking it’s just another day at the lake. And no matter where you choose to cast out, do your research first.