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July 01, 2020 3 min read

Spearfishing refers to the act of hunting fish underwater mostly by free diving using a spear gun or in other cases a pole spear. Elastic-powered spear guns and slings are used in most cases while in some others, a compressed gas pneumatic-powered spear gun is used. There are several techniques that can be used in spearfishing. This includes: free diving, which is the most common technique, snorkeling and in other cases scuba diving. However, it should be noted that scuba diving is illegal in some countries including Mexico. A person who practices spearfishing is commonly referred to as a spearo.


Why go spearfishing?

A lot of questions might arise as to why most people prefer spearfishing. Well, spearfishing has its own advantages and these are highlighted in this article. This method of fishing for one, allows for selective fishing since the spearo is the one that determines the fish to be caught. The importance of spearfishing is that there is no by-catch. Unlike other fishing methods, non-targeted fish are not caught. The spearo only takes what will be consumed.

Using this method, bigger fish are caught. The chances of catching smaller fish is limited.

Spearfishing is also an eco-friendly method of acquiring fresh sea food. This is because it does not require any gears or instruments that can cause water pollution. Spear guns are eco-friendly and hence do not pollute the habitats of various sea dwelling creatures.

For anyone adventurous, spearfishing gives them an opportunity to know how fish is handled from the moment it is captured to its final consumption. Spearfishing is also cheap and convenient. This is because fish is caught and does not go through the hustle of being processed in a processing plant.


Spearfishing gear

Spearfishing involves free diving and hence before adventuring, one should be well prepared. By this I mean one should have the right gears. This may require consultation of a professional for recommendations on the right equipment for use in specific places. Some equipment may not be of universal use. Equipment used in the US may not be appropriate in Indonesia.

Having the right tools will ensure safety and success in spearfishing. Outlined below are the basic tools and equipment that will ensure a safe and fun spearfishing;


Fishing license

The importance of this is that it gives guidelines on protected species and restricted fishing areas hence one cannot be arrested for encroaching protected areas.


Slings, pole spears or spear guns

The primary weapons for spearfishing are slings, pole spears or a spear gun. In order to use a spear gun the visibility of the water and the fish to be hunted should be the primary concern. The spear guns vary in construction in that some are manually launched while others are pneumatic, air or gas-powered.


Spearfishing wetsuits and rash guards

The choice of the suits is determined by the underwater atmosphere and the activity to be done. The color choice is another factor with the best choice being one that has camouflage.

Camouflage Spearfishing Wetsuits

 Camouflage Spearfishing Wetsuits


Masks and snorkel




Spearfishing knives

Other things to know for beginners

Spearfishing requires a lot of practice. Fishing underwater can be a very daunting task. These are the prerequisites of spearfishing that beginners should familiarize themselves with;


Free diving

Free diving refers to the act of holding breathe underwater for the duration of spearfishing. This is what beginners ought to learn though it may take some time to become a professional spearo. A beginner needs to learn the technique of equalizing. This refers to the process of regulating the pressure in the middle ear.


Following the guide's instructions

Spearfishing is not a dangerous sport but following instructions is essential. A beginner should try as much as possible to stay close to the guide at all times. A rookie should also be careful when handling the spear gun, it should be kept face down while in the water. Finally, a rookie should never lose sight of his/her fellow spearfishing buddies.


Holding breathe while diving for the fish

The fish has a tendency to avoid people hence a beginner should bring the equalizing technique into the equation. This will enable him/her to see the type of fish and get within the shooting range.

Liz H.
Liz H.

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