Fishing with a drone is becoming very fashionable and there is no reason to deprive yourself of the pleasure it provides. There is an impressive number of videos on YouTube of people who have met the challenge of fishing with a drone. So if you want to start with drone fishing, I will explain how to start and what you need to know. Obviously it all starts with the choice of the drone.
So How to Catch Fish With Drone? The first thing you need is to choose the right drone for the job. Next, you need to determine if you want to use the drone as a scout or hunting aid. There are 5 ways to use a drone for fishing. Those are; direct fishing with a drone, fish finder method from the boat, using drone to find the best location, transport and ejection of the encoder.
What is Drone Fishing?
If you are passionate about fishing and looking for a way to improve your catch, a drone could be the ideal solution for you. You can not only use the drone to search for nearby schools of fish, but you can also use the drone to throw your line far into the water. This could be extremely handy if you are on the shore and need to cast your line into deeper waters. Gone are the days of kayaking in the ocean, sit on the beach, treat yourself to a beer and send out your drone to catch the fish for you (unless you like kayaking, of course).
How Does Drone Fishing Work?
You can use a drone to catch fish in two different ways. One solution is to attach a hook, bait and fishing line to your drone and send them over the body of water you wish to fish. The downside is that if you catch a big fish, it can drag your drone into the water. Not good! So fishing would cost you a lot more than you first thought. In this article we will go through in more detail how this can be avoided.
The second, more effective – although slightly more technical way is to use an accessory called a downrigger release clip. As seen in the picture, your drone is simply used to launch your line and once you have a bite, the pressure exerted by the fish will cause the release of the clip by the downrigger. You can then bring your drone back or leave it there to film your take.
6 Ways How To Use Drone to Catch Fish
In this picture above, you can see 6 different examples of how a drone can be used for fishing. The areas of application of drones are expanding ever more. Of course, drones are also finding their way into leisure and sport. It is therefore not surprising that drones are being used more and more for fishing. The possibilities are varied and in addition to some somewhat crazier ideas, there are actually useful applications in which drones support the angler to increase the catch quota and also to catch the big fish. For those who are passionate about fishing, I recommend: The Ultimate Fishing Log Book from Amazon.
What Makes a Drone Good For Fishing?
There are 2 main factors to consider when buying a fishing drone.
1st, is the battery life. We all know how long it sometimes takes to chew a fish. Sometimes fish just don’t want to bite. Therefore, a drone with a long battery life is a MUST. You can always buy spare batteries, which will further increase the use of drones.
2th most important factor when considering a drone for fishing is the range. You want your drone to comfortably cover long distances without fear of losing the connection. If you currently have a short-range drone, you can usually buy a signal booster for relatively inexpensive online access.
How a Drone Helps With Fishing?
I would definitely like to answer this question with NO. Sure, drone makes many things easier, but also takes away the charm of the unknown environment. There are many advantages for using a drone for fishing. But if you already have a drone, of course use it. First and foremost I fly off the water and:
- Look for fish that are near the surface. So you can quickly see whether you are sitting correctly or whether another position could be more promising. A good height not to spook the fish is 15-20m.
- Even if you do not see any fish, water structures are clearly visible from above, such as plateaus, water lily fields, herb banks or scraping edges. You get an overview of the water much faster than if you had to drive everything by boat.
- You can also check in advance whether the target location on the other side of the lake is really free before you start translating by boat.
- Apparently, with appropriate modifications, it is also possible to fly out his assemblies and feed instead of throwing them. But honestly, it goes a little too far for me.
- When I fish in shallow water and the water quality allows it, I also control my feeding place with the drone in the morning and see if I can actively identify fish that are eating.
Which Drone is The Best For Fishing?
From my experience, I will present to you 3 drones that have good features for fishing. These are the TOP 3 drones for recreational fishing by experts who have been in this sport for almost their entire lives.
1. DJI Mavic 2 - TOP!
If you want to try drone fishing, I recommend this DJI Mavic 2 model. The advantage of this second generation of drones is that this model is very small in size. You don’t have to lug a huge suitcase with you and so it is always there. If the latest models are simply too expensive, you can of course take a look at the used market. This drone has a lot of useful features, so I definitely recommend it if you decide to go fishing with a drone.
2. DJI Spark
DJI Spark is a very small drone with very specific capabilities and features. This is also the cheapest of these 3 drones. Spark is a great choice if you need a reconnaissance drone that will be able to survey the situation and direct you on the right path when fishing. DJI Spark has a very high quality camera and has a flight time of 16 minutes. This drone is very easy to operate and also has a Return Home feature.
3. DJI Phantom 4 PRO
This is a more expensive model than the previous two, but definitely the best. The DJI Phantom 4 PRO has a range of 7km, which is more than enough for fishing. What also boasts this drone is the flight time of 30 minutes, and very few drones have that flight time. The Return Home feature that the DJI Phantom 4 PRO has is one of the advantages, so if you can’t manage it, you can press it back and save it. And another feature is that it is equipped with sensors, which have the ability to avoid obstacles.
Is Drone Fishing Legally Permitted?
Basically, the DJI app tells you where you are and whether you can fly there. Nevertheless, you should of course always inform yourself in advance about no-fly zones. You only need a drone license for larger, heavier models. But what applies to all mid-range drones is:
- A fireproof badge with the owner’s name and address.
- Insurance (sometimes also covered by liability)
- Fly only in the field of vision
You should also always make sure that you don’t bother anyone with your flight activities. Be it other anglers or people who, like us, are looking for peace on the water. Drones are not exactly quiet and the hum of the motors can also annoy others quickly. In my experience, birds are not afraid of such an aircraft. I can’t say yet what other wildlife looks like. Nevertheless, you should avoid flying the part over the lake all day and, if in doubt, turn away if you notice that wild animals react with panic and flight.
2 Types of Fishing Drones
If you want to savor the pleasure of fishing entirely conducted with a drone, you will need to get a waterproof drone like the Top Sea Splash. However, these drones have the advantage of being delivered with a release device comprising a camera. The release system is controlled from the radio control you have in hand. These drones allow you to spot the fish and drop the line. Once the fish is hooked, you will have to grind it yourself in order to lift it out of the water.
At the time of purchase, check that the structure is made of stainless steel and / or CNC aluminum. With these drones, fishing is relatively easy. You just have to put the lures or bait and launch your drone. But if you already have a photographic drone like the DJI Phantom 4 drone and you plan to use it for fishing, this is still possible. The method is handcrafted and you will have to be very careful not to damage your drone in contact with water. Many videos show that the diverted use of the photographic drone remains effective. However, you will have to fix the release system yourself.
4 Main Things When Choosing a Fishing Drone
Make sure that the drone you have chosen meets the following criteria:
- The first criterion is autonomy . A drone that cannot stand the time of exploration is not reliable. Imagine that the battery drops while your device is still 250m from the shore where you are.
- Second criterion: you need a robust drone. It is not a question here of obtaining a combat helicopter, but also do not take a small drone which would be carried away at the slightest gust of wind. Likewise, it must be able to support the weight of the line.
- The third criterion is the flight speed . If your drone is not able to fly fast, its battery will be even more stressed. In addition, you are not going to quickly identify a fish and catch it. It therefore takes a certain speed to quickly explore the surfaces of the water and locate the fish.
- Last criterion: the drone must be easy to fly . Remember that you must be able to control the drone, stabilize it to target where you want to send the hook and then activate the dropping of the line. The synchronization of these operations is facilitated by good maneuverability of the drone.
Make sure you have correctly positioned the release pliers, because it is the one that holds the fishing line and releases it when the time is right. Attention: Do not forget to unlock the reel of your fishing rod to allow the line to extend easily when the drone takes off. Likewise, make sure that the propellers and the line do not meet in order to avoid the accident during the flight.
How to Pilot Your Drone As you go Fishing?
The objective is certainly not to look at our pretty drone in the air, but to check on our screen if the camera has spotted a fish. You also have to keep an eye on the battery level and the level of resistance of the machine in the air. Once you have spotted the fish, drop your line carrying the lure at the end. Generally, after dropping, you have to pull the line yourself. However, you can also use the drone to bring the fish back to the shore. For that it will be necessary that the line is fixed directly on the drone and that your drone is robust enough to resist the force of the fish. Some drones are fully waterproof and have a device allowing them to land on water. This is particularly the case of the Splash drone which can land and take off on the water. However, when you only plan to transport the bait by drone, you can simply use DJI Phantom 4 which is the most used drone for fishing. If you want to master professional drone flying, this is the book I recommend: Guide to Drone Training from Amazon.
Drone As a Scout
The easiest way to use a drone while fishing is to send it out as a scout. From the air you have a much better overview of the landscape, the water and attractive fishing areas. The drone offers considerable added value, especially for anglers without a boat, because it extends the field of vision of the angler and reveals the best fishing spots to them even without access to the water. But drones can do more than just find the best place for fishing. As an angler you can explore the fishing spot and fishing grounds in advance and discover possible obstacles. This can prevent you from getting stuck in a fallen tree under the water just because you couldn’t see it from the shore.
This saves you a lot of frustration and the loss of expensive equipment. Drones can also be used to find group of fish. This enables the angler to place his bait in the right place more quickly and to increase the catch rate. Drones are a huge help, especially in large lakes and when fishing in the sea. Since the fish can spread over a large area, it is extremely difficult to find them and fish accordingly. The drone can spot the fish from the air and the angler can then throw his bait into the water there.
First Lifting Fish Drone
In addition to the possibility of transporting the bait over the water, there is of course also the possibility to fly the complete angler to the fish. Admittedly, this idea may sound a bit bizarre, but it’s not impossible. A team built a chair that can actually be lifted up by a drone. This allows the angler to be conveniently transported over the water and can then cast his bait directly over the lake. Check it out in the video itself. The team even managed to catch a fish and land it. However, the seriousness of the undertaking can be doubted. The idea is great as fun, but it will hardly ever go into series production. The investment costs in such a powerful drone alone far exceed its benefits. In addition, you can assume that the model is a self-made, which should hardly be classified as “safe” by an official body. As an angler, you only have the boat or the option of transporting the bait by threat.
In this article, we went through all the possible ways a drone can be used for fishing, what are the best drones available in the market for fishing, and techniques for catching fish. Drones have become part of sport fishing and are increasingly used for recreational purposes. I also briefly covered fishing related laws with the use of drones. I hope I was able to answer some questions and wish you a lot of fun if you buy a drone for fishing. You are welcome to write open questions and suggestions in the comments or write to me personally.