Today’s interview is with Simon Horvath! If nothing else, this episode will convince you to join a spearfishing club! The wealth of knowledge, opportunities and lessons you get through being in a club is a sure way to get better at spearfishing and have a great time doing it. A club will help get you through that first year, teach you things you would have otherwise taken years to learn and ultimately make you a better diver. Another important benefit is being connected to the voice of spearfishing in your area. With so many stories about new protected areas essentially making spearfishing inaccessible and illegal, having a connection your local government to have your voice heard as a spearfisherman is extremely important. Simon has been playing this role for the Central Coast spearos and been a voice for fisho’s and spearos alike.
Go find out about your local clubs and join! If there are none, consider starting one yourself!
03:45 We are midway through our journey, today we make a visit to Simon Horvath!
04:25 Lovely rainy weather
05:10 Central Coast Sealions spearfishing club
07:15 Hawkesbury almost lost 90% of their fishing
10:05 Spearfishing makes you acutely aware of your environment
Today’s interview is James Sakker! It’s day 3 of Shrek and Cam’s East Australian Coast trip and they are chatting with James Sakker! Whales and sharks become a big talking point with loads of stories of encounters and tips for dealing with them yourself. Also some bonus tips for hunting Mackerel and drift diving! Lots of laughter and great stories!
06:55 No lobsters were harmed in the making of this podcast!
07:50 Day 3 on our mission
09:30 You picked an amazing time to come, not
10:55 Big whales and a baby whale
14:25 Tail slapped by a whale
15:40 Scariest whale story
17:40 Diving with Dodgy and a Bull shark!
22:10 Cam’s shark encounter
25:15 How should you handle sharks when you shoot a fish? Keep eye contact, roar or make a loud noise underwater. You’re big, be aggressive. Except Bull sharks.
30:40 Sharks have strict hierarchies, especially Great Whites. A smart shark is a cautious one.
32:10 Encounters with aggressive sharks
35:00 Poking sharks away and a mate getting bitten
41:10 Tagging Great Whites
42:40 Great Whites throughout the world
44:45 Is it blood or movement that attracts sharks?
46:20 Alternatives to poking
48:15 Thoughts on the swimmer taken in Sydney, very unusual behaviour
50:30 Tiger sharks and Dogtooth Tuna
54:20 What is your diving range at home?
56:25 Drift diving = accuracy matters more than time
*a quick caveat from Shrek: Freediving and Spearfishing can be highly complimentary however knowing how they are different is essential so that you can spearfish safely. Freediving is holding your breath in controlled environments with close supervision. Spearfishing is most often done in the wild where your only safety device is your buddy. Because of this, freediving one time to a specific depth in a controlled environment does not correlate to spearfishing. You should not spear anywhere near your physical capabilities so that you always have a margin of safety. Fatigue and sustained diving all day also need to be factored into safe diving as well. Having said all this, freediving courses offer very practical benefits for spearos such as; how to conduct a rescue, streamlining, equalization, understanding of physiology and more. Just don’t expect or try to emulate performance freediving while you are spearfishing. The journey to greater depths takes time, experience, wisdom and opportunity with attentive dive buddies. There is no rush!
Whilst Kilsby is a spectacular place to dive for its crystal clear fresh water, it does have a limited feasible diving depth – unless you want to tech dive with the right equipment into the caves. Not recommended for a Freediving novice.
However, at the end of our course a few of us went on a secret mission to really test our newly acquired skills.
During this particular descent I was committed to only two things and neither included a ‘depth’.
The first: Can I equalise? The second: Am I comfortable? If the answer to both was yes, then I’d keep going, but if anything felt wrong then it was time to abort and turn back.
Well, after a significant ‘breath up’ and the support of some extremely capable and experienced friends, off I went, trying to make everything as streamlined as possible, finning efficiently and not looking down.
The next part was the hardest, trying to stay relaxed, ‘without’ trying to stay relaxed, because the more you think about it, the more instinct kicks in and logic says why the hell are you doing this? Turn back! It’s highly counter-intuitive.
Before I knew it, with all the above in mind and the consolidation of a week’s worth of very deliberate practice under significant professional supervision (read: don’t try this at home), I was hitting the point of becoming negatively buoyant: where you no longer have to kick to force yourself down. You’re so deep that the weight on your belt is now pulling you towards the bottom and you’re not going to float. You’re sinking… sinking, equalising, trying to relax without trying to relax.
It’s getting colder, darker and the line that you’re attached to with a wrist band is starting to ‘wizz’ as you pick up speed.
Everything is going well but it’s colder, darker and the wizz is becoming louder, but so are your thoughts, much louder… should I be getting to the bottom soon? What if I’m going too quickly? Do I have enough oxygen to get back up?
Shit… Equalise… Relax… Ah! Look down!
Can I see the weight attached to the bottom of the line? This hole in the middle of a paddock in the middle of nowhere is deep and I’d like to be found even if I don’t come up. Illogical I know, as I’m attached to the line itself. It seems like forever that I’ve been on this descent, far longer time-wise than I’ve been before.
What do I see?
Nothing… just the line disappearing into the very dark, very black abyss. Maybe it’s time to throw on the brakes, but, before I do, can I equalise? Am I comfortable? Yes. Yes.
Ok, keep going, let gravity do the work. The whole time during this dive I’ve realistically done nothing, just the decision to do it and a few kicks, the work has 99% all been in my head.
But no wonder, right? Your brain is trying to tell you with every one of its alarm bells to turn the hell back, you’re going the wrong way, oxygen is in the opposite direction, stupid! But the other half is saying nope, adventure lies below.
Which is what I love about it. A challenge, going places physically and mentally that most people wouldn’t dare or, realistically and understandably, even consider. But hey, why are we here, right?
I decide to have one last look before calling it, just in case it’s only a few meters away, because man, despite my commitment to those two questions I know myself and I know I’d be pissed if I was only ‘just off’. And… there it was. A tennis ball attached to the end of the line followed by a 4kg kettle bell.
So much excitement but so little time to enjoy it. I’d made it to the bottom, I held onto the line and had a look around. Trying to forget about the pressure I can feel and the overwhelming need to breathe (go on, hold your breath now).
There’s really not much to see. Not a lot grows without light but it was great to see it, the bottom, all the same, instead of hearing about it from others that had seen it and you just have to imagine. No more imagining for me. Must be great being an astronaut.
Then reality kicks back in, you’re only half way there kiddo, you need to get back up! The ascent is much the same but you now have hope and familiarity instead of fear and the unknown. You’re on your way to safety and your friends at the top, plus oxygen too. Talk about a one sided relationship you totally take for granted.
You’re on your way finning upwards but you have to work for it. It’s getting lighter now too and much warmer than you thought it was at the beginning. Probably on account of how damn cold it is down there, but those uncomfortable temperatures fall down the priority list when others, like breathing, take over in the hierarchy.
I see my safety buddy at about the half way mark, arguably the most dangerous part of the dive as it’s the most prone to shallow water blackouts. Adam escorts me to the top as I pick up speed and I become positively buoyant again. I burst to the surface where I grab hold of the buoy and everyone made sure I was ok.
Everyone has a happy but relieved look on their faces as you’ve come to the top safely, then the look of anticipation and serious nods as they wait for you to give the ‘okay’ sign: an indication that you’re in control and not about to pass out. This is followed by ‘hook’ breathing actions that you employ to get oxygen back into the blood stream as quickly as possible. These are also called ‘recovery breaths’ and are useful and good practice for spearfishing as well.
Despite it being a joyous occasion, safety, friends, oxygen, the show isn’t over yet and the danger hasn’t left the building.
Eckart looks at my dive watch and looks away with a bit of disappointment mixed with concern and a wry smile. So does Adam, followed by Isaac. I pull my wrist to look at it as my excitement rises but Adam grabs it and holds my arm down, trying to hide his emotions whilst at the same time looking after my wellbeing and encouraging more recovery breaths. Now isn’t the time for any unnecessary strain on the body, just breathing and recovery!
It’s only a second later that I understand why, my heart is smashing my chest. It almost feels as though people might be able to see it through my wetsuit. He tells me not to smile and tries to calm the excitement on the surface between us all. Telling me to just relax with his arm around me like you might a child that’s just tripped over and needs some support before they take that massive breath and start howling. It’s weird but comforting. No one else seems to think it’s weird, it’s just part of it. You’ve literally just touched new limits and you’re pretty vulnerable physically, so no wonder.
A minute or so passes and I’m allowed to look. Everyone is focused on my reaction. I read the watch face and in massive, extra large text it says… 35.3m!
The biggest smile runs across my face, as it does for everyone else, there are more friends on the banks looking over that have already heard how deep it was, as the Chinese whispers worked as efficiently as they do behind the scenes when I was recovering. Everyone is yelling and splashing the water.
This is great! I can hardly breathe. I feel as though I’ve had a rock put through my chest and I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.
This was one of the best days of my life! – watch our video of the trip to South Australia below!
10 Ocean Camping Tips And How To Make It More Interesting
Camping is a great way to enjoy the outdoors while getting away from the hustle and bustle of city life. But if you’re used to camping in an RV or in a tent near your car, trying something different can add excitement to your next camping trip.
Shrek and Mark filleting up fish while camping on North Stradbroke Island
Ocean camping was always one of the most popular ways to camp. It offers a great opportunity to get away from everything and enjoy the sounds and smells of nature.
Spending a night by the ocean can be a wonderful experience. And during the day, plenty of activities keep you busy: from swimming and fishing to simply exploring the coastline. Here are a few ideas on what to do while ocean camping:
1. Try spearfishing
Spearfishing is a great way to get up close and personal with the fish in the ocean. It can be a bit challenging at first, but once you get the hang of it, it’s a gratifying experience. Make sure to check the regulations in your area before you go spearfishing, as there may be certain areas that are off limits.
If you are new to spearfishing, plenty of instructional videos and articles online can teach you the basics. It may seem daunting initially, but with some practice, you’ll be an expert in no time!
2. Go on a nature hike
One of the best things about camping by the ocean is that there are often beautiful hiking trails nearby. Make sure to bring your camera to snap pictures of the stunning scenery. Keep your eyes peeled for interesting wildlife, too- you never know what you might see!
Daly/Luscombe family nature hiking
For an even better experience, bring your dog along with you! It’s a great way to build wonderful memories and connect with nature. Make sure to pack some high-protein treats for your pup to keep his energy levels up, and you are good to go!
3. Collect shells
One of the most classic beach activities is collecting shells. It’s a great way to relax and take in the beauty of your surroundings. Who knows, you might even find a rare shell! If you’re feeling creative, you could use the shells to make some artwork or jewelry.
Depending on the tide and the camping location, you might even be able to find some sand dollars. Be sure not to take too many, though- it’s important to leave some for other critters that rely on them for food.
4. Go surfing or paddleboarding
If you’re feeling adventurous, why not try your hand at surfing or paddle boarding? It’s a great way to get some exercise while enjoying the ocean waves. Just be sure to heed the lifeguards’ warnings and always stay within your skill level.
If your beach has a lot of people, surfing or paddleboarding can also be a great way to meet new friends! Don’t be afraid to talk with someone while you’re waiting for the next wave.
5. Go fishing
Fishing is another great way to relax and enjoy the ocean views. It’s also a great activity for the whole family- even small children can enjoy the fun! Just be sure to check the local regulations on what kind of fish you’re allowed to catch, and always throw back any that are too small.
Troy and Shrek – first fish for him! Shovelnose caught and released
Fishing is also a great opportunity to try out different cooking methods. If you catch a big enough fish, you could cook it over an open fire for a truly unique camping experience.
6. Have a picnic on the beach
One of the best things about ocean camping is that you can enjoy all your meals with a view of the water. Pack a picnic lunch or dinner and enjoy it on the sand while listening to the sound of crashing waves. It’s the perfect way to unwind after a long day of exploring.
If you’re feeling extra romantic, you could pack a candlelit dinner for two. Just be sure to clean up after yourself when you’re finished- no one wants to find leftover food in the sand!
7. Explore tide pools
Tide pools are a great way to get up close and personal with the animals that live in the ocean. Be sure to check the tides before you go, as you don’t want to be trapped by the incoming waves.
Many tide pools are home to hermit crabs, sea stars, and other interesting creatures. It’s a great opportunity to teach kids about the different animals that live in the ocean. Just be sure not to touch or disturb anything- remember, these are their homes!
8. Go on a whale-watching tour
If you’re lucky enough to be camping near whales, why not go on a whale-watching tour? It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you won’t soon forget. Tour boats often leave from nearby towns or cities, so be sure to do some research in advance.
Just be sure to dress warmly, as it can often be cool out on the open water. Binoculars are also a good idea to better view the whales.
9. Try your hand at beachcombing
Beachcombing is a great way to find interesting treasures washed up on shore. You never know what you might find- shells, sea glass, or even a message in a bottle! It’s a great way to relax and take in the beauty of nature.
Just be sure not to take anything that isn’t yours. Many people enjoy collecting things from the beach, so leaving some for others to find is important.
10. Go for a swim
Of course, one of the best things to do while ocean camping is to go for a swim! Just be sure to check the local regulations on where and when you’re allowed to swim. Some beaches have specific areas designated for swimming, so it’s important to follow the rules.
If you’re not a strong swimmer, be sure to stay within your depth and always wear a life jacket. Swimming with a friend is also good, just in case you get into trouble.
Ocean camping is a great way to enjoy all that the beach has to offer. By following these tips, you’re sure to have a safe and enjoyable trip. Just be sure to leave the beach cleaner than you found it- we want to be able to enjoy it for many years to come!
Interview with Tom Sandstrom, Angus Knox and Cameron Wise
Today’s interview is a little different, join Shrek and his good mate Cam as they go on a spearfishing road trip down to Sydney! Today we are in the Moonee Tavern in Coffs Harbour after a day of spearing, having a few brews, a good meal and a great chat with mates! Shorediving, breaking in new wetsuits, cooking tips and what conditions you can expect when diving around Coffs Harbour. Join Shrek and his mates in the pub after a day of spearfishing!
06:05 Welcome everyone!
07:00 New wetsuits
10:25 Shorediving in Coffs Harbour
11:30 Abalone: size, how to find them and how to cook them
13:50 How is your seafood game?
16:20 Cooking fails
17:30 Mushy Kingfish Pastrami
21:45 Icing fish
24:45 Smoked Mullet
27:35 What conditions can we expect diving here?
31:50 Too cold for Kingfish?
33:30 Tips for shooting big Kingy’s
36:45 Hunting Parrot fish and Dhufish
40:20 Do you wear a GoPro?
43:25 What are the best months for diving here?
44:40 How can someone start diving in Coffs Harbour? Coffs Harbour Spearfishing Club!
Today’s interview is with Kevin Glen former owner/operator of Mantis Spearfishing, a friend of Forrest Galante and the only guy to shoot a Marlin in California! An engineer and innovator in the spearfishing world with countless awesome stories of him and his mates out in the water! From shooting and losing a Sailfish in Durban to tracking down Yellow Tail and Sea Bass in the Channel Islands, he is a great source of information and knowledge in California. Hear some of his stories in the water, the journey of learning to spearfish and the stoke of doing it with great friends. Be sure to check out Mantis Spearfishing and grab their last stock!
04:50 Welcome Kevin! Tell us about this Marlin!
10:10 You engineered a dive float?
13:50 You have an unusual spearfishing story with a bunch of famous friends!
15:55 Setting the record straight on the record Sea Bass with Forrest Galante!
18:55 What’s the spearfishing community like there?
20:10 Wind and swell conditions for the Channel Islands
21:35 Urchin barons
22:05 Sheephead eat urchins
26:05 Mantis Spearfishing – tell us about it! The Roller Muzzle
30:10 What does your spearfishing look like these days? Good dive buddies?
33:30 White Sea Bass
34:50 Vermillion Rock Cod
35:45 Do you think your fisheries are well managed? MPA’s, 30-30 and conservation
40:00 Big hearts, well intentioned but completely disconnected from the real world
42:55 What’s your favourite species to hunt? Halibut, yellow tail and sea bass
44:55 How are you tracking yellow tail down?
46:15 Using bait fish
48:05 Half Moon bait fish
51:45 Memorable fish
54:10 Fighting the fish – how much tension is right?
56:25 Tough/scary situations
01:00:25 Reels vs floatlines
01:02:15 Jewfish, Mulloway or Kabeljou sounds
01:03:45 Designing gear
01:08:20 We need more people like you!
01:12:00 What’s in your dive bag for the Channel Islands? 5mm wetsuit, weightbelt, knife, Scorpio Carbon Fibre fins in Pathos foot pockets, Mantis Spearguns
XTAR D26 Whale Review | LED Diving Torch for underwater foraging/hunting
“Overall, this has been one of the best dive torches I’ve used. It’s bright, durable and easy to secure.” – Cam
Cam lives and dives mainly around Sydney although him and I have dived in Victoria and South Australia using this torch. I asked Cam to put together a review based on the hectic use he has given it chasing mainly Eastern Rock Lobsters. Here is the rest of what he had to say. – Shrek
In particular, the brightness of the XTAR D26 Whale is great, and is probably the best dive torch I’ve used for both brightness and illumination. It has four brightness settings, getting up to a strong 1100lm, which can apparently reach up to 310m on land but also makes a solid effort under the water.
The torch has what it calls the “unique side switch (patented) and power indication”. The power indication light is a really handy warning tool. The light is green normally, but it turns to red when it is between 25% and 5% and then flashes below 5%. The locking mechanism of the side switch takes a little bit to get used to. You need to hold the switch down and then twist it to the left 90 degrees to lock it in place. While locking systems are good so you don’t bump it in tight spaces, this one can be a little hard if you need to use it with one hand or a thumb if your other hand is otherwise occupied (such as reaching for a cray).
At almost 300g it is a bit weightier than most, however, I actually don’t mind that and it doesn’t impact much as soon as you’re in the water.
The lanyard/wrist strap that’s included is actually really good. It might not sound important, but the length of it is long enough to be able to stow it and the toggle doesn’t slip when locked, so you can keep it tied to your wrist without worrying. This is important when it’s not in your hand, as you often can’t feel it through your wetsuit or glove.
The quality seems to be great and it has been relatively maintenance free. I’ve been using it for over a year now without any issues of corrosion or any water appearing to get into the working parts. However, there are two spare O-rings included in case you need them.
A fun addition is that it also has a standard tripod screw hole, which allows it to be fixed to items such as a dive photography system, a handle, or a wrist mount.
Four brightness settings up to 1100lm: 60/200/600/1100
Colour temperature: 6000K
Beam throw: 310m
IP rating: IPX8
Material: Anodized aircraft 6N01 aluminium alloy
Dimensions: 155mm x 46mm
Weight: 293g (including battery)
Battery: 18650/18700/26650 Li-ion batteries (26550 5000mAh rechargeable battery was included in the set with a charger)
Run time: up to 48h on low or 2h on “turbo” (1100lm)
Max diving depth: 100m
Spot light angle: 5 degrees
Here’s a vid of Cam and Shrek using the dive torch in South Australia
Today’s interview is with Rodney Pacitti, aka RoKKiT KiT on Youtube! Today is a gold mine for all things spearfishing and Youtube! Rodney has a successful Youtube channel with almost half a million subs that started off with kayak fishing adventures all the way to solo camping, catch cook videos. He tells us about his channel’s success, how he started it, the tips and tricks he uses, how he films and advice for beating the algorithm! Give his channel a follow and let us know what you think of the interview! Rodney makes a living making these videos, be sure to give them a watch and see what he’s getting up to. What Youtube advice did we miss? Let us know!
03:25 Welcome Rodney! You were requested!
04:30 Tell us about your Youtube channel!
08:25 Kayak fishing
10:40 Kayak diving
12:00 Where do you go kayaking?
14:00 The fishing lifestyle
15:40 How do you film your trips?
18:55 Acting vs real life
20:35 Youtube inspiration
23:55 Your job as an entertainer
25:25 The Youtube algorithm and how to beat it
32:20 What success have you seen from your channel? Are the millions of views paying off?
37:00 What other tricks and tips do you have for your channel?
39:40 Using analytics
42:00 How do you measure your success?
43:50 Best time to post: 7am Saturday morning Sydney time
46:35 What tools do you use to make these videos?
50:35 Dealing with internet trolls
53:40 Dealing with the fame
57:05 Sydney spearfishing – how, when and with who?
01:01:50 Boat diving?
01:03:00 Gold Coast Freedivers pool training
01:05:45 How often are you diving?
01:07:40 What big challenges do you face in spearfishing?
Today’s interview is with Paul Rodriguez of Hot Rod Spearguns! A well traveled spearo that has a passion for making great spearguns, he gives us his best advice on designing and building a speargun and he lets us in on a special project he’s busy with… a travel speargun! It breaks into 2 parts for easy travel and fits back together into a powerful and effective speargun to take with on holiday! All this and more! Is Cobia the best eating fish? Or is it African Pompano? Maybe it’s the Jobfish! Some robust conversation and interesting insights into the different types of spearfishing in different parts of the world. Also, some great advice for hunting Dogtooth Tuna! Enjoy the episode and let us know what you think!
04:30 Hello and welcome Paul!
05:25 You have invented a travel speargun that comes in two parts? How did this come about?
08:55 How do you build your spearguns?
10:40 R&D in spearfishing is long and expensive. How do you protect your IP?
12:55 How does the speargun join back together?
15:35 Mono or dyneema? What length and how strong?
18:30 Line management and avoiding muzzle wrap
22:00 Simplicity is your friend – form follows function
27:20 Tell us about your spearfishing story! Where and how did you start?
29:40 What is the best all-round speargun size?
32:20 Roller’s throw the shaft far but lack penetrating power. What do you think?
34:30 Old school vs new school mentality
37:10 Where are you spearing these days?
37:37 Tell us how you process Cobia?
40:30 Palm sugar for ceviche and smoking fish changes the game
43:10 Rubbers/Power bands – what do you see?
44:40 Most consistent setup uses 14mm bands
49:00 What is a species what you love to target? African Pompano
50:45 Besides the thermocline, what else do you use to target them?
52:40 What are you looking for in weather? Water temp and wind
56:05 As you’ve traveled over the world, what things have you learned about planning a trip to go spearfishing?
58:05 Spearfishing in the Philippines
59:10 What’s the most special fish you’ve ever lost?
01:00:25 Green Jobfish is the best reef eating fish
01:07:05 Tough or scary situations
01:11:30 Having good dive buddies is the most important dive gear
01:13:20 Good buddy diving is also great fun
01:14:10 Funny stories
01:18:22 What’s in your dive bag? JBL Mask, white snorkel, Waihana wetsuit, medium to soft blades, Garmin Mach 1, handbuilt dive knife, Travel Hybrid 120 speargun
01:23:44 Gyotaku is a great way to memorialize special fish
Today’s interview is with Captain Bly, owner and Captain of Lineage Charters and the craftsman of Captain Bly Spearguns! A well accomplished spearo who builds spearguns and runs what sounds like amazing fishing charters! Learn about the mighty Bluefin and Yellowfin Tuna and how to hunt them, how he assists spearos to be better hunters in his local waters and some great tips on aging and caring for your fish to make it taste better! All round tons of great info and good conversation about spearfishing charters, spearguns and getting the best eating out of your catch. Be sure to check out Captain Bly on instagram and his websites: lineagecharters.com and cptbly.com!
06:15 Welcome Captain Bly! How did you fall in love with the ocean?
07:50 Your passion for making spearguns
10:55 What changes have you made in your speargun designs?
12:15 Instinctive aiming
14:15 Ballasting, testing and salt water
18:10 Injury from a big recoil
20:15 You’re a veteran, how has that impacted your spearfishing?
21:30 Lineage Charters
24:15 Are people open to learning and taking your advice? Learning things the hard way
26:00 Bluefin story – don’t give up!
28:40 Common struggles and advice you see
30:55 Bluefin Tuna are an interesting species, tell us about them
32:20 What is the season for Bluefin?
34:49 What about Yellowfin?
36:40 PB Yellowfin: just under 300lb – tell us the story!
37:50 These fish are tough, they can survive a lot – catching a tuna on a line with a speargun still attached to the fish!
Captain Blys Refrigerator for fish and game. Dry ageing fish fridge
39:40 What do you think of the freediving side of spearfishing?
41:25 Weighting is different for different types of hunting
43:50 Hunting Halibut
44:20 The fear of dropping your weightbelt
47:45 Maui funny/scary story
49:30 Taking hydration out in the water with you
50:05 Night time lobster diving – surge pushing you into the rocks
51:00 What’s your advice for shallow, rocky lobster diving?
54:40 Dive flashlights – what’s your advice?
56:50 Are you using a cray loop? Only hand diving in California
58:00 What technique do you use to get a tough lobster out of its hole?
59:00 Your ocean is particularly beautiful and full of life
01:00:20 Tell us about Lineage Charters!
01:03:25 I’ve shot a 100lb tuna, what is your process of caring for the catch?
01:07:35 How do you process a tuna?
01:10:00 It’s about the journey
01:11:25 Aging fish works – Dry aging masterclass!
01:14:05 Hanging the fish
01:15:15 You had some shoulder surgery! How did you recover your dive fitness?
01:17:05 Do apnea while doing exercises to build up your anaerobic fitness
01:18:50 The Escapade!
01:21:05 The best float: Ocean Hunter 3 Atmosphere
Today’s interview is with Yianni Barthelmess, multiple recipe contributor and all round frothing spearo from Shellharbour NSW! Drawing from his dad’s love for the ocean, he has really turned his life into an ocean inspired one! A talented chef as well, he has submitted several recipes to 99 Spearo Recipes and has a bunch of catch cook videos on his YouTube and Instagram! Get some actionable gardening tips, practical chef skills and some awesome advice for dealing with sharks! We talk everything from food to gardening for seafood, sharks, shorediving and more! Listen in and let us know what you think!
05:30 Welcome Yianni Barthelmess!
07:15 Are you a professional chef?
08:40 Growing a lot of food
11:55 Rain and fish stocks
16:25 How did you start spearfishing at 7?
17:55 Traveling and spearfishing
19:25 What did you learn about spearfishing in a new place?
21:20 How do you find fish?
23:50 The need to be efficient
24:25 Lessons to spear by
26:40 Boat vs shore diving
28:55 Walk us through a dive day!
31:50 The physiology of spearfishing
35:55 Have you logged or cataloged your experiences?
38:15 Raw fish is very popular right now but they are hesitant
39:30 Raw fish safety precautions
40:45 Kingfish raw
42:55 Fermenting foods
44:35 Tell us about your garden! The Noob Gardener Podcast!
45:25 How do you start a garden for seafood?
46:15 Be a soil farmer
48:10 Fish cleaning bench
53:20 Tell us about your recipes!
57:20 99 Spearo Recipes
01:00:20 Overcooking fish
01:02:35 Smoking fish
01:04:00 What else draws you to spearfishing?
01:05:45 Encounter with 2 Orcas
01:07:20 Scary stories
01:09:10 Shore diving and sharks
01:10:30 Tips for dealing with sharks for new divers
01:21:05 Who are your favourite dive buddies?
01:25:10 What’s in your dive bag? 2mm in summer, 5mm in winter Cressi wetsuit, Rob Allen Sparid 110 and homemade timber spearguns, Rob Allen Cubera mask, Cressi plastic fins for shore diving and DiveR fiberglass fins for boats
Today’s interview is with Chris Adair from Bottom Dwellers Freediving in British Columbia and we talk everything cold water freediving and spearfishing! Depending on who you ask, “cold” water can mean different things, but when we talk about the cold water that Chris deals with, it’s not messing around! Learn some great tips for getting better at diving in sub 10 degree C water, staying warm and comfortable and about some of the awesome initiatives he runs where he partners with First Nations People communities in remote locations and introduces them to spearfishing and freediving! Learn some great tips and how he is giving back to those around him in such an awesome way!
Photo by Jeremy Koreski
03:45 @DeepWaterDreamin Patrick Ryan voice message
06:05 Welcome Chris Adair! How did you get into freediving and spearfishing?
07:40 You teach freediving professionally
08:25 Bottom Dwellers! We mostly hunt bottom dwelling fish.
11:20 Hunting on the bottom is it’s own technique to learn
12:45 Tell us about Bottom Dwellers Freediving!
Photo by Jeremy Koreski
15:00 Tide to Table / Freedive Harvesting courses
19:05 Foraging in cold water is magical
20:30 Diving seasons
21:20 You have some great photographers
24:30 You have some great community initiatives you run with the First Nations People, tell us about it!
29:25 What is day to day life like in these remote communities?
“This delicious crowd pleaser of a recipe is perfect for when you are having a few guests over and want to put on a good feed. We have used a coastal fingermark in this exact recipe here but you could try whichever whole fish you’d like. One whole fish around that 45cm mark will happily feed 2 people, top it off with some nice fresh greens as a side and your onto a winner. We hope you guys enjoy this dish just as much as we do, cheers!” – Jordan Hunter@the_hunter_downunder
For the fish
Medium whole fish, filleted and cut into chunks. Keep the frame for presentation
Rice bran oil – for shallow frying
3/4 cup of soy sauce
3/4 cup sushi seasoning
2 Tbs ginger, grated
Use the soy sauce, sushi seasoning and ginger to marinade the fish frame and chunks. Leave in fridge for 1-3 hours.
Heat oil in pan, coat marinated fish frame in tapioca flour. Shallow fry. Repeat with marinated fish chunks.
Place cooked fish chunks on the frame for presentation.
Chilli tamarind dipping sauce
1/2 cup coriander, coarsely chopped
3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
2 long fresh red chillies, coarsely chopped 1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 shallot, thinly sliced
4cm piece fresh ginger, grated
2 Tbsp tamarind concentrate
1/3 cup shaved palm sugar
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1-2 tbsp water
Blend coriander, garlic, chilli and salt to a paste in the nutri bullet. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat and stir-fry the paste for 1 minute until aromatic. Add the shallot and ginger. Stir-fry for 30 seconds. Add tamarind, sugar and fish sauce. Simmer for 2 minutes or until sugar dissolves.
Lime and coriander drizzle
Juice of 1 lime
2 Tbsp sesame oil
1 Tbsp grated ginger
1 Tbsp garlic
1 chilli, chopped finely
1/4 cup of coriander, chopped
1 shallot, finely chopped
4 cubes of palm sugar, finely chopped
1 Tbsp sesame seeds
All ingredients in a pouring dish, mix well and let sit for 30 mins to infuse.
Today’s interview is with Eric O’dea of the Backcountry Hunters (BHA) and Anglers and Eric Keener of Fin and Forage! We chat everything 30/30, MPA’s, conservation, hunting and how they all connect. We also have a great chat about the upcoming Catch and Cook comp with Fin and Forage, the BHA and Messermeister. A spearfishing competition mixed in with masterchef with a beach cleanup and urchin culling event with prizes for each different category, this is a great idea and we can’t wait to see this comp happen! You can visit this link to find out more!
Follow Fin and Forage on Instagram and YouTube to get all the latest content they make and hear all the news about this comp!
03:25 Hello and welcome Devin and Eric!
05:30 The Backcountry Hunters and Anglers: what is it and why is it important?
08:00 Hunter and conservationist
12:10 Growing up with deer in your garden
14:25 Eric Keener from Fin and Forage, reintroduce yourself!
18:50 30/30: What is it all about?
21:50 What happened in NSW?
26:35 What is your advice to the everyday spearo?
30:35 Citizen science: iNaturalist and how to get involved
36:25 Food changes mindsets and perceptions
41:15 The Catch and Cook Comp! Tell us all about it!
43:25 Beach cleanup prizes
47:00 What are you doing with the urchins you’re collecting?
51:00 Who are the legends that made this possible? Fin and Forage team, Ryan Gentry, @CutProfessor
52:00 Lots of big sponsors and massive prizes!
53:10 The infamous Valentine Thomas story!
58:55 Was your trip succesful?
01:00:25 Devin, do you and Eric ever dive together?
01:01:25 The most fun you can have with your spearfishing friends
01:02:30 “I don’t regard nature as a spectator sport” Discuss!
01:05:20 Belonging in a place you don’t belong
01:06:25 Go to FinandForage.com and on Instagram to find out more about the competition!
Today’s interview is with Samuel Mumford, the frothing Cornish Muso spearo living down under! Growing up in Cornwall, he started spearfishing, frankly by punching them with a blunt speargun. Have a listen to the episode to hear his experience with the Mike Tyson Speargun! From almost getting drowned by a crab to the infamous Cornish Sea Turtle, he has some great tips for hunting fish like Dhufish and Mangrove Jack and has a lot of knowledge other spearos can learn from. With a great attitude and a clear and obvious love for the ocean, we think you will enjoy today’s episode with Samuel Mumford!
Today’s interview is with Jamie Ryves from Norfolk Island who now lives in Vanuatu! Originally a chef, circumstances meant that work was hard to come by which caused a shift in his lifestyle. He now lives on a smaller island around Vanuatu and goes spearfishing twice a week to support his family! He takes some unbelievable footage, if you have any interest in big game fish like Dogtooth Tuna, this will be your new favourite source of video! Stunning conditions, excellent tips for hunting big Dogtooth and personal stories of Samba’s and Shallow Water Blackouts and how he is a safer diver because of them. Check out one of the most underrated YouTube channels around!
02:50 Hello and welcome Jamie! You are from Norfolk Island?
03:55 You live the spearo life and take amazing footage
05:25 The currents are a mystery
06:05 Where did you grow up?
07:50 You are a chef? Are you still cooking?
10:05 You are a specialist Dogtooth Tuna hunter! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fijsU8Goxig)
13:30 You have an underrated youtube channel
15:15 Have you thought about guiding?
16:45 What capacity do your charters have currently?
19:00 You get a wide range of species, which are your favourite?
23:10 Tell us about a good hunt
26:25 You were a bodyboarder too, but spearfishing came easier
28:55 You use a floatline but you have shot a few with a reelgun! Tell us about your gear for hunting them
31:30 What are common Dogtooth hunting problems?
38:30 I need to visit you!
40:10 PB’s and sharks
44:05 How have you studied the sea conditions?
46:05 So you have some extreme structure, tall sea mounts and volcanic rock drop off’s
47:25 How long do you need to stay there for a good trip?
52:20 Freediving in spearfishing: what is your position?
58:00 What about scary stories? Samba’s and SWB’s
01:09:10 How do you train your buddies to dive safer?
01:12:30 Wayne Judge
01:16:55 Funny stuff!
01:18:25 Funniest friends
01:19:55 What gear are you using? Ruku fins, Aimrite wetsuit. 1 spare shaft. 2 reel guns and a double roller from Aimrite. Riffe bungee. Ocean Hunter and Riffe 3 atmosphere floats. Slip-tip spear
Today’s interview is with Matthew Novakovich, the man behind Ocean State Spearguns! Born out of seeing a need that he could fulfill, Ocean State Spearguns are hand-crafted timber spearguns that can be customized to your liking! Want a big mid-handle 5 band blue water speargun? Or how about a short speargun for low viz diving and shooting in caves? Matthew has you covered! Starting as a small hobby, he gave Cameron Kirkconnell one of his spearguns to test and he’s been making more ever since! Doing most of his diving in the usually dirty and cold Atlantic, he has learned a thing or two about making robust spearguns that work well and look good while doing it. Check out OceanStateSpearguns.com to see what he’s doing!
He has some great insights into barotrauma and has a story about how it almost ended his diving career but more importantly – how he responded. If you have a barotrauma and are being told you’ll never dive again then give the Divers Alert Network (DAN) a call! Visit their website Dan.org and view all of their medical info here! Not all injuries are permanent!
02:30 Hello and welcome Matthew!
03:55 You have some nice fish over there like Tautog
Today’s interview is with Will Brunker of Aquagat! An innovator in the speargun world, Will has developed several unique and bespoke designs and components for spearguns! Colourful, tough and functional! He gave up his day job to go into making spearguns and components full time and has been making it work! We don’t talk much about his spearfishing journey but we sure do geek out about spearguns, from designing them to making custom and unique parts and everything in between. Today’s episode is a great one for anyone interested in making their own parts or gear. Be sure to check out Aquagat.com for all the great gear he makes!
03:30 How to write a guest recommendation! Welcome Will!
06:00 You have made a lot of innovation with different materials
07:30 How did you start building spearguns and how do you do it?
09:30 Aquagat is a great name!
12:05 How long have you been doing this?
16:15 How do you manage the balance between work, family and spearfishing?
18:55 What does your spearfishing look like at the moment?
22:25 Mentorship mentality
24:45 Early lessons and experiences in the water
26:45 Dry training
28:05 Speargun accuracy and pool testing
31:15 How do you aim?
32:55 How long should it take to get used to a new speargun?
36:50 Taking your ego out of it
39:40 Let’s talk about your spearguns and components
46:00 Keeping your intellectual property safe and R&D
51:51 Buying cheap gear – the poor man pays twice!
54:30 Tell us about your reels, how many designs did you go through until it worked?
59:35 Do you get many Noob Spearos or mostly experienced ones?
01:01:50 “Where form meets function”
01:05:45 Who do you get your speargun inspiration from?
Today’s interview is with Forrest Galante! Explorer, TV personality, adventurer and spearo, Forest has a rather large resume when it comes to the outdoors, holding multiple spearfishing world records on speargun and pole spear! Having been on the Joe Rogan Podcast and besides his own podcast The Wild Times podcast, he is most well known for his TV shows where he travels to remote parts of the world in search of extinct and extremely rare animals. We are proud to say that his journey was hugely influenced by spearfishing, join us as we have a great chat about his connection to spearfishing and how that relates to the other work he does.
03:08 Welcome Forrest Galante!
05:52 Wild Times Podcast
07:25 Handling large sharks
10:43 First Tiger shark interaction
13:15 We are still learning about sharks
15:10 You’re a HECS man and you’ve been on the Joe Rogan Podcast?
16:24 Extinct or Alive
18:25 Tell us about your adventures
22:15 The reality of working a job like yours
24:40 Your early work
27:30 Opportunity cost
29:30 You have 6 World Records, which stands out the most?
35:30 You seem to like hunting Wahoo, how do you hunt them?
40:00 Getting towed by a big fish
43:25 Bull sharks and Mako’s
48:10 California diving
50:50 Do you hunt with the meal in mind?
53:15 Spearfishing presents unique pressure on species
55:55 What is in your gear bag? 62 inch Diablo Speargun, HECS and Waihana wetsuits, Omer Stingray Carbon 25’s, Riffe mask and snorkel
01:01:45 What are the obstacles that you face and how do you overcome them?
Today’s interview is with ex-firefighter Tran Lawrence from Taranaki, New Zealand! Originally coming from a line of Vietnamese fishermen, Tran is a great example of someone who truly comes alive when he’s in the ocean. Apart from being a great spearo he is also a talented creator, check out his website, Ocean Protagonist, here! Have a listen as he tells us about growing up on the water, his connection with seafood and buying a yacht to go sailing all around New Zealand! He has some great stories from his years underwater. He is also passionate about the conservation side of being in the ocean, he has some great thoughts on that. Let us know your thoughts in the comments!
“…stories, photos, videos and anecdotes from someone that hears the ocean when she calls and listens when she sings…..a love for the ocean through the eyes of a photographer, videographer, adventurer, diver, fisherman, sailor, refugee, firefighter, and father…”
04:24 Welcome Tran! You’re an ex firefighter?
07:00 The Taranaki lifestyle
08:20 Growing up and career
09:05 A big health scare
10:35 You represent a few brands, Catch Fishing, Splash Dive, Atlantis Dive, Ocean Hunter and Rob Allen New Zealand
12:00 You have some amazing content, how did you get into photography?
13:40 Sailing around New Zealand
15:55 How did you start spearfishing?
17:40 When did you realize that spearfishing was for you?
22:00 Diving in Taranaki is a special experience
23:10 Guide to catching Kingfish
24:15 Scarcity mindset and taking as much as you can
28:00 Have you introduced people to spearfishing
29:35 Swimming pool or trial by fire?
31:20 When you take Noob divers out, how do you guide and teach them? Instill the passion and respect for the ocean
33:00 Your favourite species to hunt
35:00 How has your conservation mindset evolved over your spearfishing journey?
37:15 Wine barrel smoker and smoking fish
42:25 You love to cook, walk us through a recipe
45:00 Using more of the fish
47:20 Sharks as a food source
49:10 Do you enjoy more involved hunts? The hunter mindset
52:35 Creativity and your journey into underwater photopgraphy
01:01:25 How can someone start in underwater photography?
Interview about Travel Spearfishing with Jerry Guerra
Today’s interview is with Jerry Guerra and it’s all about travel spearfishing. Ever watch a Daniel Mann video and think to yourself: “I want to travel to other countries and spearfish”? Maybe you’ve seen films like David Ochoa makes about his trips around the world filming the fish up close and personal. Or maybe you just listened to the previous episode about Palapas Ventana, traveling and spearfishing were made to go together! Doing your first big trip can be a logistical and planning exercise in patience, you don’t want to get to your dream destination and not have your fins or speargun! Jerry gives some great Noob tips on doing spearfishing trips, advice for international travel, navigating airports with spearguns, packing, charters and so much more!
Today’s interview is with Deryck Tan from WA. An Equine Dental and Veterinary Surgeon by day, mad spearo/gyotaku/cooking seafood chef type dude by… I suppose day too! He is an extremely talented artist specializing in the art of Gyotaku – making fish prints! What started as an interest quickly became an obsession, from experimenting with his first fish to now taking commissions. Have a listen to some of Deryck’s funny stories and lessons he has learned along the way and get some tips to get into doing your own gyotaku! Deryck is also great in the kitchen and is passionate about seafood, in particular the underrated species. Learn about tempra vs tempura, alternative fish species and get some insight into abalone and urchin cooking.
Have you also been inspired to make your own gyotaku? Tag Noob Spearo in your posts, we’d love to see!
04:45 Welcome Deryck!
05:40 Tell us about yourself!
06:35 Cooking inspiration
07:05 Where did your passion for gyotaku come from?
19:53 What skills did you get out of your spearfishing course?
21:42 Tell us about your gyotaku! Tell us about the stamps
25:25 Who buys your artwork?
27:55 What materials are you using?
30:35 How to gyotaku: Thaw and clean fish, pat dry, use scrap rice paper to remove all the moisture especially around the eyes, dilute ink, paint fish with ink but NOT the eyes, get rid of excess ink (use cotton or material), Circle piece of paper to keep the eye protected. Put paper over fish and push it in. Pull it off, add details to the eye, add your stamp.
35:45 Difficult to gyotaku: crustaceans. How long do they take?
Today’s interview is with Tim Hatler & Brock Kennedy of Palapas Ventana in Baja, Mexico! Surrounded by amazing sea’s almost year round and with options for when the weather is bad, they have some of the world’s best spearfishing out there. They run spearfishing trips where spearos Noob and experienced alike can get in the water and have an opportunity to shoot potentially world record fish! Listen to the stories they tell from their many years running spearfishing trips, advice on booking and preparing for a trip and some of the fun you can expect! From riding Great White sharks to cruising in luxury, if you are wanting a memorable spearfishing experience, go look at Palapas Ventana!
04:00 Welcome Brock and Tim!
05:35 Where in the world are you?
07:05 You have an ocean full of life
08:40 Introduce yourselves and Palapas Ventana
10:15 Tell us about your accommodation you have an offer
12:10 How does it work for international travelers coming to visit? Logistical issues
14:25 How long do you need to have a decent trip? 5 days of diving
15:30 February has the worst conditions, least fish
17:05 Trade winds
19:15 How remote do you travel on these trips?
20:50 Brock, how did you start spearfishing?
22:10 Scuba spearfishing
24:20 Coming from cold water to now having warm tropical water, how has that changed your spearfishing?
This post was made with the permission of Christopher Marsic, a new member on the Noob Spearo Community on Facebook who introduced himself with this story. I liked it so much, I asked him if I could share it on the Noob Spearo Vault blog. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! – Shrek
I live in Victoria (soon to be Mackay QLD) and I guess my biggest struggle was overcoming the conditions down this way to chase those rare southern gems.
In my early days of spearfishing 10 years ago I spent a lot of time diving Port Phillip Bay, which when I first started I thought was the best thing ever! I would jump in after work in horrible visibility 2-4m (on a good day where I lived) and would swim around for hours I started off like all spearos shooting the feared dusky morwong, but before long I worked my way up to bream and snapper and became pretty decent at getting onto the pinkies.
Most places in the bay I dived had an maximum depth of around 3m however I was super interested in the breath hold part of spearfishing so I started doing some research and that’s when I found the spearing down under magazines. I’ll never forget the first time I put one of those DVDs on and my jaw hit the floor … Watching these guys descend deep into the blue then shoot these monster fish really got me excited to get better at the sport.
After doing tons of research and learning about blackouts etc I decided it would be best to find a dive buddy so I headed to the forums back then you had to jump on a website forum there wasn’t fb groups those days that’s when I met one of my best friends to this date Jai KP and he basically introduced me to ocean diving and man that first dive in the ocean changed everything! I never wanted to dive the bay again! Little did I know this was a double edge sword.
Although there is good fish to be had here in Victoria it is very based on season and in that season you only get handful of days you can actually get in the water especially from shore. You gotta align our constant big swell, low wind and the right time of the year.
Don’t get me wrong;
– this didn’t stop me getting in the water all the time but it was hard going and not super rewarding for the beginner, so I turned my attention north, over the next few years I would dive locations like Bermagui, Eden and Townsville which made the motivation to get back into the water in Victoria super low.
I basically repeated this trend of going north and diving then coming back to Vic and basically only diving those perfect days until about 2 years ago when I took the plunge and bought a jetski and boy did that change everything.
I started becoming obsessed with getting a blue fin tuna the jet-ski I got was super capable and I soon found that as long was the wind was good it didn’t really matter what the swell was doing (within reason) I could get out to my favourite parts of Vic the South West. I proceeded to spend the next month chasing tuna seeing them time and time again but either the viz was really bad and I’d just catch a glimpse of them or they would just hang out of shooting range and pass me by.
But then it happened …
…it was towards the end of the day and I had basically called it on the tuna and headed in to an island for a bit of a look for crays and to get some footage of seals, but on my way in to the island the sounder lit up in 60m of water and I knew exactly what they were, I had the gun in the gunnel ready to go attached to my two Riffe floats which was then attached to the ski, I rolled off the side of the ski into the blue breathed up and swam down to around the 10m mark, as I was swimming down I was just surrounded by massive tuna it was absolutely awesome and super hard to keep calm I lined up one of the smaller ones that came in close as I had no idea how hard the fight would be and pulled the trigger.
Ever since that day I’ve been a lot better at finding the blues and it has reignited my love for spearing, I never imagined 10 years ago when I shot my first dusky that I would be shooting Bluefin tuna.
Absolutely love spearfishing and its journey that it brings and I cannot wait to start my new journey when I move to Mackay, Queensland later this year .
We are kicking off 2022 with Mike Kane, co-owner of Spear West, one of the best spearfishing stores in Perth and WA! We chat about all things WA spearfishing, joining a club and starting to spear at a late age, dive buddies, boats and driving for hours! Having always owned a boat, he had no shortage of opportunities to dive but starting later in life has given him a different perspective on spearing. If you are ever in WA near Perth you should stop by and give them a visit, you’ll have learned something new by the time you walk out!
Hello Shrek, my name’s Guilherme and I’m a Portuguese spearo. I was listening to your podcast with Josh Bollen and you guys were talking about cooking octopus. In Portugal we have lots and lots of octopus recipes and some tricks to cook them. Unfortunately I didn’t finish my submission for the cook book 99 Spearo Recipes but I still gave my support on Kickstarter. Anyway here are some tricks to cook octopus:
1. ALWAYS freeze them.
What makes the octopus so tough are it’s his muscles and when you freeze them you’re helping to loosen and break some of them down.
2. ALWAYS boil the octopus even before grilling them.
Here is how you boil them. Put water to boil in a pot with nothing more than a glove of garlic and a whole onion. Both without being cut up. When the water is boiling, get the octopus and start submerging it for a few seconds and take it out. Wait a few seconds and do it again like 3 times or so. Then you let it boil on a low heat for about 30-45 mins depending on the size of the octopus.
For some yummy Portuguese octopus dishes, search;
“polvo à lagareiro“
“arroz de polvo“
“pataniscas de polvo“
“alcatra de polvo“.
The last is also a traditional dish that we eat on Christmas. Let me know if there’s still a chance to submit a recipe! Thanks for all the great content keep it up!
Today’s episode is with the Sydney Spearo Chef Jai Gibbons! Talented and passionate about food, he has been cooking all his life and been in and out of many different kitchens around the country, picking up a treasure trove of knowledge and tips about preparing and cooking seafood! Jai has submitted an awesome guide to 99 Spearo Recipes that’s all about caring for your catch to get the best possible eating experience from it, we go in depth about that and the other tips and tricks he’s learnt in his career so far. What to do after you have speared and secured the fish, how to store, fillet and process the meat, how to choose the best knife for whatever job you’re doing and a big section on dry-aging are some of the big talking points in this interview. If you’re excited for 99 Spearo Recipes and are interested in cooking better seafood, this episode is for you! How to dry-age fish, fillet and process fish better and make better, more creative seafood dishes without the intimidation, enjoy it!
Today’s episode is with James Sakker, aka Sakker J – The best telemarketer you didn’t know of! Absolutely mad about spearfishing, we chat about hunting Snapper, Dhufish, big Abalone, some interesting tips for using crayfish to call fish, hunting in cold dirty water and dealing with sharks! James is well travelled and has speared in many places all over the world, he recounts his time in the USA and in Mexico going from cold dirty Great White infested waters to warm, clear water with huge fish around. James has also submitted a bunch of recipes to 99 Spearo Recipes so keep an eye out for his recipes when it comes out! There is also a great discussion on dealing with sharks and his experiences with different species in different parts of the world. He also wears a tourniquet and has a great Youtube channel!
Today’s episode is with Josh Bollen from Sydney! He has submitted several recipes to 99 Spearo Recipes and is passionate about cooking and eating food he’s foraged or caught and foraged. He has a love for making food look good and when you see his recipes you will understand why! We chat about smoking fish, dry aging meat and the magic of vacuum packing and how to get the best and most out of your catch. Have a listen to this interview and stay tuned for 99 Spearo Recipes for his recipes and a ton more! We also chat about anxiety in diving, how to deal with it and ways to improve your experience of life. Enjoy listening and let us know your thoughts in the comments!
Today’s episode is part 2 of the Adreno Capricorn Trip, a week long spearfishing charter aboard the Eastern Voyager to the Great Barrier Reef where Noob and experienced Spearos alike got to dive in one of the best environments around. This part on the interview starts on the trip back to port at the end of the trip. We get insights from some of the Adreno crew and reflections from Noob Spearos who are new to the water and some who have never shot a fish before this trip! This is by far one of the best spearfishing charter’s around – great food, hot showers and world class spearing.
Has this interview made you want to go on a spearfishing charter?
05:10 Welcome back to the Eastern Voyager
08:18 High and low points of the trip for Wayne
09:20 Best catches of the trip?
10:51 Would you recommend this trip?
12:16 Last thoughts and tips
13:18 Trip board
14:45 Jack, tell us about your trip
16:50 Minimum experience for coming out here
19:20 Best catches
20:45 Jordy, tell us about your trip
24:45 High point of the trip?
25:46 How did you stay in the right headspace while being tired?
29:00 Ryan, you had some ear troubles, tell us about your trip
32:45 Did your line fishing background help at all?
34:28 How did your first dive of the trip go?
37:14 Tim’s thoughts
40:46 Ryan, how has the spearfishing gone?
43:40 Advice for people doing this trip
47:17 Describe your trip
49:55 Amy, how was your trip?
52:40 How has the fishing been?
01:00:55 How was the photography part of the trip?
01:03:47 Describe this trip
01:05:11 Dave is here too, how was your trip?
01:07:06 Your struggles
01:10:08 Describe the trip
01:11:15 Clear Eyes on your ears: advice from our chef
01:14:24 Joel and Taylor, tell us about the sleeping on the ship and how was your trip?
01:17:00 Highlights of the trip
01:18:15 Tell us about your Spanish Mackeral
01:22:25 What have you learned from shooting this big fish?
01:30:26 Perks of working for Adreno and more highlights
01:32:53 I shot some Tuskfish and you were just as stoked
01:35:15 Does this trip give you a reset on your energy?
Today’s episode is with Daniel Mann! If you do spearfishing and watch any YouTube and you don’t know who he is you are missing out! He runs one of the best spearfishing channels around, stocked full of great content and tips. He’s recently been really upping his chef game, as you’ve probably seen in his recent videos. A talented chef that is also an extremely talented spearo, we chat about reel guns – when to use them, why you would and wouldn’t want to use them, alternatives and tips and tricks with using them. We also chat about some of the amazing recipes he’s been cooking and his thoughts on the 99 Spearo Recipes cook book!
Do you use a float line or a reel on your speargun?
Daniel Mann scanning the bottom spearfishing
07:05 Welcome back Daniel!
08:27 Who are you, where do you stay and what are you doing with your time?
10:55 We got a message from a spearo that can’t use a float as it is too dangerous
12:20 Why I use a reel gun
14:25 Be prepared to lose your gun
18:43 Type of structure you dive on
20:10 90% of Noob Spearos need a float line
21:20 Diving alone and dive watches
23:35 Old school approach to safety when using reels
27:45 What do you need to look out for when diving with a reel?
29:30 A good boaty
32:10 Getting caught in the reef
40:05 Shrek, what do you use?
43:21 So you moved to the spearfishing capital of the world, London – the London International Spearfishing Club
48:25 The core appeal of spearfishing is the same wherever you go
54:25 Traveling and spearfishing – lessons learned
Today’s episode is with Spencer Allen from California. He is an all in spearo that has fully embraced the lifestyle and has been a big contributor to the 99 Spearo Recipes book. His cooking is even better than his spearfishing! After losing all his gear in a house fire, he stopped hunting and never really got back into it until he started kayak fishing. After being smashed attempting a big surf launch he almost gave it up again, but decided not to quit. He found some buddies to take him out again and ended up catching a 41 inch Halibut. He has been hooked ever since! Join us as we chat about spearfishing and cooking, the Channel Islands, finding buddies and ways to be a better spearo. Let us know what you think about this episode!
00:13 Intro and 99 Spearo Recipes messages
05:25 Welcome Spencer! Tell us about yourself!
09:07 What is a yard sale and how do you launch in the surf?
Today’s episode is a special one! It features interviews done while out on the Adreno Capricorn Bunker Trip, a 1 week spearfishing charter on the Great Barrier Reef aboard the Eastern Voyager! Join some of the legends from Adreno like Wayne Judge and Taylor Slattery along with the familiar voice of Trevor Ketchion and some actual Noob Spearos as they discuss plans, expectations and goals for the trip. This is a great opportunity and one of the easiest spearfishing charters you can get – hot showers, great food and priceless advice and guidance from legendary spearos, we highly recommend doing this trip! Book your own trip here! As always, a massive thanks to Adreno for making this trip so memorable!
Photo Credit: Amy Stevens @beyond_amy
Photo Credit: Amy Stevens @beyond_amy
Photo Credit: Amy Stevens @beyond_amy
02:56 PADI Level 1 Course
09:45 Welcome to the Eastern Voyager! Introducing Adreno legend Wayne Judge and Noob Spearos Ryan, Jack and Jordy
13:31 Wayne, what is the plan for this trip?
14:00 We are going spearfishing, not freediving
17:03 How is everyone feeling about the trip?
18:22 Great advice from Wayne
Photo Credit: Amy Stevens @beyond_amy
21:28 Hunting: find the fish’s weakness
23:20 We have some great conditions here
24:08 What goals do you have for this trip?
26:10 Frenzel or Valsalva?
32:55 Questions for Wayne: How do I prepare for that first dive?
34:17 How much weight should I use?
35:50 Sharks: When do we get out of the water?
40:58 How do you stop the urge to breathe?
44:24 How long should I be recovering for?
48:21 Diving with more experienced spearos
50:40 Part 2
51:53 Day 3: Taylor, How has it been so far?
52:54 Trevor is hitting his prime!
53:26 Fish of the trip?
56:44 Ryan shooting his first fish ever!
59:00 My first Blackspot Tuskfish and Spangled Emperors
01:01:52 How has the boat been? Good meals and hot showers are excellent
01:03:04 The Queen of Content: Amy!
01:07:57 Trevor Ketchion vs Daniel Mann: Most underrated fish
01:11:08 What struggles have you had?
01:13:00 What are your goals for the rest of the trip? Shoot a trout! How are you going to do it?
01:16:51 Being a good boaty
01:21:14 Trevor’s advice
01:23:20 Safe buddy diving
01:26:16 Taylor’s boaty advice
01:31:14 What goals do you all want to achieve on the last few days?
If you consider how many different video game titles there are, which cater towards people who are fans of, or partake in various hobbies and interests, it could be considered strange that spearfishing is rarely something covered in this genre of popular culture. Video games can often spark an extra interest in whatever activity they’re based upon, so it would be good if they could be used to attract a new audience to spearfishing, too.
These titles are often also used as a different way for people to enjoy their passion during some downtime, or sometimes develop their craft further, by mimicking and practicing the actions they use on the racetrack or on the field, for example. But amongst the plethora of titles available, there’s only a few that reference our favorite pastime.
One of the most notable games amongst that handful is Freediving Hunter: Spearfishing The World, which was released on the Xbox One and on the PC. It was received quite well, with people enjoying how unique it was. Now, as people are gaming on their phones, tablets, console and PCs, it would be good to consider what options there could be to encourage more people to sample the underwater experience.
There has been a huge rise in the number of people picking up Virtual Reality capable devices over the past few years. In our article on ‘Training for Spearfishing’, it’s clear the best training available is spearfishing. Whilst this maybe true, it may not be possible for people to get out into the water as regular as they like. So, a realistic, VR based experience would be the next best thing. The immersion offered in VR is second to none, after all we’ve already noted, people in other disciplines utilize gaming to better their physical and mental skills. Bringing the underwater experience into homes via VR could be the ideal way of showing off everything that our activity has to offer.
Away from the ultra-realistic world of VR, there could be a place for a simpler, more accessible title. After all, Ridiculous Fishing, which was released on mobile was a huge hit with gamers, not just fishermen and women. Some of the biggest hits found in the app stores are the simpler titles, which soon gather a massive following due to their easy to pick up and play elements. With over 6 billion people now owning smartphones, is there any better way of raising awareness of the thrills of being a spearo, than introducing it to the commuter friendly platform?
Another growth area in gaming is online slots with more people taking to that pastime during the last 18 months. One reason is that there’s an almost endless choice of titles available. Amidst that limitless variety of slots now online, Foxy Bingo’s games currently feature a few titles that actually relate to fishing. “Fishin’ For Wins” and “Slingone Fishin’” for instance take slot players to the seas. With their bright graphics, and cool mini-games, they’ve proved popular. There are now fishing, and scuba diving slots already so it would be fantastic to see spearfishing represented, too.
Mini game in a huge title
Now we’ve thought about games in their own right, which spearfishing does deserve. But over the past ten or so years there’s been an explosion in mini-games within bigger titles. Some of which have then gained that much interest that they’ve sparked their own following. In Grand Theft Auto for example, there are so many people that head into the game just to compete in the mini-games available. Spearfishing could be a real addition to the next GTA game, it would certainly fit in with the title. Boats are available in the game for players to ‘buy’, so the natural progression would be to introduce the option of becoming a spearo too, right? The exposure gained from spearfishing being introduced to this franchise alone would be stratospheric, putting the activity firmly in the mind of the gamer.
We hope you enjoyed our look at the some of the options to bring spearfishing to a wider audience, raising more awareness and hopefully growing the numbers of people who are getting involved.
Today’s interview is with Brian Fern, aka @Unkolearnuhow from Hawaii! He has a genuine wealth of knowledge on gear and diving from his almost 40 years of spearfishing with a particular mindset towards sustainability and safety. In Hawaii, spearfishing is seen as more of a lifestyle than a sport – that shows in the way he speaks about spearfishing and guides others into it. He is a big advocate for buddy diving and gives us some actionable tips on how to dive safely and more effectively, how to handle Noob Spearos that don’t know much about safety and how to confront experienced spearos that have unsafe dive practices. He even has some advice on avoiding and treating ciguatera poisoning! Have a listen and let us know what you think! We need to get Brian back for a 2nd episode, we didn’t have time to get through everything we wanted to speak about!
01:50 Spencer Allen on 99 Spearo Recipes
04:53 Hello and welcome Brian!
06:24 Spearfishing in Hawaii is more of a lifestyle than a sport
08:08 Hawaiians seem very connected to their environment, is this true or just the tourists view?
10:40 Invasive species
12:25 Ciguatera poisoning
13:34 What was your experience of that and how did you treat it?
16:11 Alcohol and coffee making the symptoms worse
17:11 When did you start spearfishing?
19:12 Pole spears
21:42 There’s no such thing as a shit fish, only a shit cook – do you agree?
22:17 Staple fish species
23:40 You have super clear water which presents it’s own challenges
25:40 How did you develop your freediving to be able to hunt those fish and be safe?
28:50 “I want to dive like Ryan Myers – how long will that take me to learn?”
33:10 Learning to be patient
36:15 Diving with better divers
38:37 What about diving with someone that doesn’t listen to good advice?
40:32 Learning through time and observation – how to not suck at spearfishing
41:30 Diving with bad buddies – have a game plan on the shore
42:54 How do you dive with people who can’t dive as deep as you can?
44:10 How do you confront experienced divers that have bad dive practices? The dangers of experience and ego
47:40 Wrapping up buddy diving – have a partner that’s at or just above your skill level
49:18 Struggling to do one up and one down? Dive with 1 gun!
51:51 Understanding variable conditions – what do spearos need to understand about reading conditions?
54:03 How do people find spearing mentors in Hawaii?
55:59 Spearfishing clubs
57:27 How do you confront people that have decided that they know enough?
58:16 Conditions: you need to learn from local divers – talk to life guards
01:00:03 Online weather resources
01:00:56 How do you know when you are too deep?
01:03:22 The right equipment for the right job
01:05:19 Financial barrier to entry – if you have the wrong gear, you are risking your life
01:08:21 Mannysub – what do you like about his gear? Premium gear that’s been well designed with great customer service
01:14:57 Before hunting with a new gun – DO SOME TARGET PRACTICE – properly powering your gun
01:18:16 Pipe guns vs wood guns
01:20:00 Price is a big influence – rigging and using your speargun is a big thing to learn. Mannysub gives you instruction manuals with their spearguns
01:21:32 Mannysub roller conversion kit – Brian is the US and Hawaii rep
01:23:04 How do people reach out and find you and your gear? Rollerspearguns.com and unkolearnuhow.com
01:23:56 We are out of time – thanks for being on the show!
Dive watches are becoming increasingly popular within the spearfishing world, and I believe they pack massive benefits when used correctly. However, like most of my ideas regarding spearfishing topics, my opinion on dive watches may come across as controversial. I don’t believe you need a dive watch, and I would go so far as to say that using a dive watch has the potential to do more harm than good. Whilst I have used a dive watch sporadically throughout my time, I have never personally owned one. As such, my experience comes from using friend’s watches, or using the devices provided on freediving courses.
I was prompted to write this article after more than a few people at the start of their spearfishing journey messaged me to ask what dive watch they needed for spearfishing.
I’ve been spearfishing for about 15 years now. I had started after watching a friend who was involved in the sport, and instantly I was hooked. In fact here’s a pic of me back in the day 👇👇
Prior to spearfishing, I already had a massive connection with the ocean, which I had gained from snorkeling at a young age, and jumping off big cliffs around Torquay into the ocean. This involved avoiding rocks both above and below the water, which was dangerous stuff.
I had already been spearfishing for a couple of years before completing a PADI scuba course for my birthday. This was when I began to learn more about the technical side of diving, and whilst most of this wasn’t too relevant to spearfishing or freediving, it did put a dive computer on my wrist and teach me to keep an eye on my depth. From then on, I wasn’t too enthused by scuba diving. Lugging all the gear around seemed incredibly restricting and unnatural after years of spearfishing. Nonetheless, it was a fantastic experience.
The next time I used a dive watch was on a spearfishing trip in Fiji, where I trialed one for a week and a half of diving, and subsequently on freediving courses I completed in Malta and the UK. I enjoyed the novelty of having a dive watch and the ability to precisely calculate depth instead of just going “yeahhh that’s about 12m”. I have also since borrowed friend’s watches whilst diving in the UK, Australia, Thailand and the Philippines.
I can understand how dive watches can be beneficial to spearos, and I have witnessed this through my primary dive buddy Andy. He purchased a dive watch, and this pushed him to accentuate his diving through deeper dives and extended bottom times. It’s an excellent device for sure and used correctly.
Here’s what I don’t like about dive watches
I have unfortunately witnessed individuals become fixated on the digits that dive watches produce, which I believe is dangerous because it can mislead and distract a diver from the dangers of depth and breath-hold.
I’d go one step further by stating that dive watches can, and have, killed people. I dive each day according to the day. I do not time each dive, nor do I record the depths to which I’m diving. I play each day as it comes. Some days, I feel more comfortable and will go deeper. Other days I don’t. Now whilst I have a rubbish conception of time in the water (sorry to anyone who has done a 6 hour + dive with me waiting for me to come back to shore), I do have my GoPro recording some dives, so I know roughly what my bottom times are.
Some clips show me on the bottom for 20 seconds. Other dives have shown me on the bottom for close to 2 minutes when distracted by marine life, deep in thought or waiting for a fish to come in to be shot.
I instinctively listen to my body. Without the dive watch, I am less focused on comparing myself to previous performances and more focused on just listening to what my body is saying. Each day is uniquely different and your body’s condition, its fuel (food and drink), mental state, water temperature, visibility, fish life, the weather, location with also differ day to day all of these things play a factor in your breath-hold.
I generally believe no two dives are the same. Whilst they may be incredibly similar, all it takes is one extra fish on the bottom that manages to grab your attention to be enough to impact your breath-hold.
This is because distractions or tasks can allow you to ignore the body’s natural alarm system. Some of the longest dives I have on camera are me watching a strange interaction or waiting for that fish just hanging on the edge to come in that little closer.
Having a dive watch on your wrist allows you to concentrate on exactly how long you’ve been holding your breath and at what depth you are at. This is why I find them so dangerous, as divers can become so fixated on the numbers and achieving certain goals instead of listening to their body’s innate response to the dive time and depth. Hence, unless you are explicitly capable of seeing the numbers as only a useful set of data and not a standard level of achievement, dive watches can be a dangerous tool.
Let’s say you can dive all day to 20m with a minute on the bottom each dive. If you are diving in 14m and you begin to feel slightly uncomfortable, you may check your watch and discover that you’ve only been holding your breath for 20 seconds. You will see the depth and time displayed and decide to hold for at least another 40 seconds as expected from a typical dive. This is where watches can be bloody dangerous.
Another situation where I find dive watches to be dangerous is when dives are combined with a competitive and self-determined personality. This is a personality trait that I sometimes apply to really random things but thankfully, not spearfishing anymore. By constantly seeking to beat previously recorded times, it can land you in a world of trouble. Some dive watches will calculate surface rest times and provide the user with a beep to let them know when it’s safe to dive again. They may also lock until sufficient time has passed to prevent you from diving before a reasonable surface rest interval. This is an excellent feature, but again you shouldn’t disregard what your body tells you just because your watch says it’s okay to dive.
Other funky features of dive watches, such as water temperature, may indicate to you when it’s likely to encounter certain species of fish, which is of course a general timekeeping piece. To summarise, I think dive watches are an excellent tool for spearfishing if the individual uses them as a guide and not as a target. I do think they can absolutely improve the safety of a spearo.
However, you should always listen to your body first and foremost. It’s trying to keep you alive, so pay attention! Don’t hold yourself to the performance of your past dives and understand that your performance in the water will fluctuate from day to day, which is totally normal and perfectly okay.
You should only attempt deep dives and personal bests in the company of experienced/trained friends with ideal conditions.
If you are just getting into spearfishing, I’d advise you to not bother with a dive watch to begin with, focus on developing basic snorkel and hunting techniques, as you progress then maybe consider a freediving course and have a play with one there. You can also borrow one off a mate or rent one before committing to purchasing one, as you progress further in your spearfishing journey.
As I said, I’ve been spearfishing for 15 years, and I have never owned a freediving/spearfishing watch, and yet I rarely go hungry (unless there’s a greedy no-good thieving seal about).
My gear laid out prior to a Hike and Spear mission!
Wet Mammal’s Top Tip: Remove your watch before you try removing your wetsuit jacket! Sounds obvious, but if you know someone with a dive watch, I bet they’ve got themselves into a pickle.
Why don’t I have a dive watch? In part, because I’m a tight arse, and I genuinely don’t have a need for it for the ground of NSW that I frequently dive. It’s enough to get a delicious feed from, and that’s all I’m after. If I lived in areas that required deeper and longer dives, I would be more likely to purchase and use one. On the other hand, I don’t know if I could trust myself diving solo and become distracted by the digits. I also enjoy going for long dives and having the excuse of not knowing what the time was if I missed important dates. With a timepiece on my wrist, the claim wouldn’t stand as well. Perhaps I wrote this whole article to convince close friends and family they are dangerous so I can keep arriving late to meetings while still wet.
Ultimately, a lot of spearfishing comes down to knowing your limitations and discovering your limits gently in good conditions and with qualified or capable people.
Today’s interview is with Lisa Ferrier Rafkin, a badass and frothing speara that holds 15 women’s world records! Join us as we chat about her journey in spearfishing, her struggles, memorable fish and some great tips for hunting pelagic fish species and staying safe! She is part of the Sea of Love Foundation where she teaches children to spearfish! She is clearly exceptionally talented at spearfishing and although she hasn’t been doing it for very long, she has a lot that you can learn from when it comes to technique, overcoming challenges and caring for your catch. The species on her list are things like Bluefin Tuna, Roosterfish and big yellow tail to name a few, if you are interested in hunting bigger game fish this is a great episode to listen to!
05:12 Hello and welcome! Tell us about the Sea Of Love Foundation
06:19 You are softhearted in the day and a badass spearfisher at night! You have 15x women’s world records!
08:12 What draws you to the ocean?
08:57 Your work takes a toll on you, is spearfishing a type of therapy for you?
10:28 What’s your earliest spearfishing memory?
12:24 You started a new sport at a late age, how did you find the process of starting new?
14:21 Starting with very competent people can be intimidating
15:56 I got my first blue water gun in 2016 after a lot of diving
17:41 What is a “paddy”? If there’s a bird on it, it’s a good sign!
18:46 What size are we talking?
20:10 How do you approach a paddy?
21:23 Explain the hunting around a paddy
22:23 Undersized yellowtail “rats”
23:17 What does ethical spearfishing mean to you?
24:30 Your awareness of the ethics become nuanced as you develop in your spearfishing
28:05 What was it like learning to freedive at 52?
29:32 Duck dive technique is a huge thing
30:23 What’s the first hunt that stands out in your memory?
32:17 Have you had a problem with shot placement with bigger yellowtail?
33:45 Loading a speargun
35:31 Sometimes you need to struggle
37:44 Dealing with excitement when you find a great fish
39:42 The missed opportunities keep you coming back
40:27 Pulling fish in on your shooting line, it takes practice
42:14 Dorado/mahi mahi really test you and your team
43:14 As a novice hunting Bluefin Tuna, what advice do you have?
46:31 Watch where your line is!
47:08 Are you using a clutch setup? Yes!
48:53 Do Bluefin dive deep when they get scared?
52:42 What tough/scary situations have you had? Getting wrapped in line
59:05 Black Sea Bass
59:57 People wonder how we can love animals so much and still hunt and eat them
01:03:06 Equipment: Riffe speargun and wetsuit
01:04:23 I don’t use a low volume mask, my scuba mask just fits perfectly and I have problems with all the low volume makes I’ve used
01:07:00 Do you do any pool training?
01:08:10 Getting a little extra depth opens up bigger fish and the problem with comparison in spearfishing
01:10:06 Dive within your limits and shallow water blackouts
0:11:24 When I take people to hunt bigger fish I make sure they keep there surface to diving ratio good
01:14:37 Funny stuff!
01:16:53 Lessons learned for drift diving
01:17:41 Shooting a 56lb Roosterfish and almost losing all my gear
01:19:08 What do they taste like?
01:19:53 Bluefin tuna: caring and processing is different than for other fish
01:22:02 Dry aging fish
01:24:49 Treating fish well is an important thing
01:26:37 Spearo Q&A
Single best tip: using pink bands, seriously! It attracts fish!
Who’s been the most influential person in your spearfishing?
If you had to start spearfishing all over again, what would you do differently?
Describe what the spearfishing experience means to you.
01:30:30 Where can people find you on social media?
Today’s interview is with Daniel Semrad of the Oregon Freediving Company! He is a world record holding spearfishing and freediving instructor that is also be an award winning teacher! He now runs the Oregon Freediving Company with his wife Talya who also holds spearfishing world records and is a competitive freediver representing South Africa! They train in some great conditions, we’re talking about dirty and 6-10 degree water! Listen in as we chat about spearfishing in Oregon, running a freediving shop and teaching students, hunting techniques, exercises and dry training to benefit your diving and a whole lot more. Dan is an awesome guy and a great diver, let us know what you think of this episode!
04:03 Hello and welcome Daniel Semrad! Tell us about the freediving/spearfishing community in Oregon
06:08 You’re a freedive instructor, how did you get there?
07:47 You won the Excite Award from MIT for being an exciting teacher
10:30 Water conditions in Oregon
11:38 What suit do you wear in your 6-10 degree water?
13:23 You probably spend a lot of time in the pool with conditions like that. How do you run your courses?
15:14 Buddy protocols in dirty water, what are you teaching your students?
17:56 What role do static exercises play in spearfishing?
19:25 When you feel you need to speed up, slow down. How did this become a reality to you?
22:22 My Octopus Teacher – has that impacted the amount of your customers?
24:09 Talya Davidoff is your wife, she is an accomplished spearo (3x world records) and competitive freediver too
25:10 Tell us about your records
28:38 What does your spearfishing consist of these days?
30:08 Walk us through a great day spearfishing for you
32:22 Purple urchins, are they bad over there?
33:48 Are they good eating?
34:50 Fisheries management
37:16 Hunting in Oregon: what species and how do you hunt them?
39:42 What are the telltale signs of the species you look for? Type of rock, seaweed, coral or animals.
42:17 You are covering a lot of ground looking for fish
43:03 I don’t like statics or aspetto spearfishing: hunting in Hawaii and Alaska
45:58 Gear: what do you use? You mentioned using a pole spear
47:19 Do you guys like smoking fish up there?
49:20 Scary stuff: have you had any close calls?
52:08 Spearfishing off a kayak: lessons learned from bad situations
55:22 What obstacles did you find in your spearfishing?
56:46 The delicate balance of doing freediving/spearfishing as a job, how do you balance it?
01:01:04 Understanding weather conditions and making predictions: how to predict visibility
01:03:45 Have you kept a dive log for spearfishing?
01:04:53 You have some back health issues? What do you do in the gym?
01:06:44 What cross training has been relevant for spearfishing and freediving?
01:08:30 Dry training can be hard to maintain, have you found the same?
01:09:22 Training resources for dry training
01:10:35 What yoga do you do?
01:11:34 Hate for spearfishing: what criticisms have you got for spearfishing and how do you respond?
01:13:39 Spearfishing on scuba vs freediving
01:14:44 Funny stuff
01:16:38 What’s in your dive bag? Wetsuit, gloves, fins, dive computer, weights, speargun and pole spear, shooting line, buoys/floats and lines, etc.
01:24:08 Do you teach spearo etiquette?
01:25:19 Spearo Q&A
Single best spearfishing tip: slow down!
What does the spearfishing experience mean to you? Hit the reset button
Who’s been the most influential people in your community? My local community
Where in the world would you like to go spearfishing? South Africa and Australia
01:27:30 Where can people find you and where is your shop?
01:29:23 Are you running courses again?
01:30:15 Outro and last notes that Daniel didn’t mention
Today’s interview is with Lyndsay Lyon from Ocean Guardian, originally and probably better known as Shark Shield! They make a range of products that are designed to make ocean activities safer and to decrease the amount of shark attacks on humans. It works by creating an electrical field that surrounds the diver or surfer that causes a distinct and noticeable reaction in certain types of sharks (namely the ones we humans have trouble with, Great White, Bull Shark, Tiger Shark) and causes them to turn away. Now, making a product that aims to stop shark attacks is a big claim and needs to be backed up by solid evidence and rigorous testing. We had a ton of questions from our community asking the questions that everyone wants to know: Will this stop a Great White from biting me? How close do the sharks need to get for these products to work? Can I trust my life to this?
If you are wondering at all about any of these questions, have a listen to this episode and it will answer all these and more! In the links below are several videos of these products being tested and you can see for yourself just how effective they are.
05:00 Hello Lyndsay! Where did the name change come from?
06:42 How did you get involved with Terra Australis and Andre Rerekura?
07:50 Terra Australis did a test with the surf board product
09:00 Tell us about how sharks sense the world and how Ocean Guardian affects sharks
10:47 Do they see in colour?
12:12 What scientific studies have been done? Many marine animals use electrical fields
15:14 What is the effective range?
17:44 What is the shark’s physiological reaction to the electrical field?
18:35 Has anyone been bitten while wearing one? What guarantee is there?
21:15 National Geographic has a good video on this with Chris Hemsworth
23:15 Use this as a risk mitigation strategy
24:07 What species are they most effective on? Only 3 main sharks that are a real concern to humans, Great Whites, Bull and Tiger sharks
25:41 Oceanic White Tips and Reef sharks and Mako’s, are they effective against them?
27:04 Installing the device into your fins
28:33 Have you thought about partnering with fin companies? Why a fin isn’t the best option
31:00 Handheld device for spearos
32:14 Problems with the first handheld Sharkshield
33:53 We are in a very small industry
37:06 Version 2.0 of the eSPEAR
38:15 Surfers are the highest risk
38:45 Bubbles also scare sharks
39:24 Shark barrier to replace shark nets
39:56 Does this interfere with other animals?
41:01 Government perspective on drum lines and shark nets
43:00 WA government actually gives you money to buy shark deterrents
43:58 Shark Eyes
46:20 Is there a maximum size shark it will work on?
Image by @sharkyaerials – The Ampullae of Lorenzini
48:00 Does 1 diver wearing this device put the others at a higher risk?
50:26 Hanging the device on your float or stringer
51:32 What are the long term effects on humans at depth?
53:21 Sharks seem to be more aggressive on the surface
54:52 I see more sharks with my shield on than without
56:40 The inverse square law and how far the field can be detected
57:39 Sharks can only sense electrical fields about 50cm away
01:00: Does the device emit a vibration?
01:00:55 Can these devices aggravate the sharks more?
01:02:46 Practicalities of using this in kelp or on coral reefs
01:04:44 Floating the device
01:06:45 How has Covid affected your business?
01:08:33 Adding an interchangeable battery
01:09:47 Shock protection?
01:11:23 Helping shark attack survivors get back into the water: The Bite Club on Facebook
01:15:13 How do you store the device?
01:16:00 How do you check the charge?
01:17:23 Auto-inflating vest for black out protection
01:18:30 What reduces the effectiveness?
01:20:09 How does it attach to you?
01:20:58 When will you have stock again and where can I buy them + servicing
01:25:08 What is the future for Ocean Guardian?
01:26:26 What’s your ultimate vision for Ocean Guardian?
How to upgrade your speargun and miss less fish! Today’s episode is with the Coatesman, Chris Coates! He and Shrek talk about accurizing, it is a word, the process of making your speargun accurate. They go through common speargun problems, shooting line, choice of brand, aiming techniques and much more. We rely heavily on our gear when spearfishing, this episode is all about making sure your hardware is working as best as it can. Roller guns vs traditional spearguns, barbs, bent shafts, mono vs dyneema and everything you need to know to upgrade your speargun, aim better and miss less fish!
Interested in roller guns? He has been the authority on roller’s for a while now and has released a great video series on Youtube and his website called Unrolling The Roller, it’s everything you need to know about roller guns!
What accuracy issues have you experienced? How did you solve them? Let us know in the comments!
00:14 Welcome to the show
05:15 Welcome back Chris Coatesman!
06:09 Spearfishing equipment cannot come back through the door
08:28 Every spearo has accuracy issues
09:53 The difference between weekend warriors and competitive spearos
11:02 First place to look, is your shaft straight?
12:15 I dive with at least 2 guns
14:20 Using the correct shaft
16:39 Why I use Rob Allen gear
19:08 Bro science vs engineering, practicality trumps the science
24:15 When buying a gun, make sure the shaft is aligned
25:11 I don’t make shafts and I don’t have handles
27:10 The downsides of homemade gear, don’t just make things cheaper, make them better
30:57 Next thing to look at is tuning your barb
33:20 There is a reason you work through troubleshooting in a specific order
35:30 Wishbones and shooting line, dyneema vs mono
44:42 Keep your guns the same
46:39 You can’t compare speargun prices to other sports. A speargun will last you 10 years if you do it right
48:27 Remove all doubt, have gear you can rely on. Carry spare parts
53:20 Fail fast and move on. Know where the issue is
Interview with Fin and Forage’s Andrew Miller and Charlie Robinton
Today’s episode is with Andrew Miller and Charlie Robinton from Fin and Forage! Spot burning is a highly contentious issue being faced more and more often as the sport of spearfishing grows. Picture this, you’ve spent the past 10 years roaming around your coastline and you’ve found a handful of really productive spots that almost always have good fish and is full of life. You have a friend that is new to spearfishing and is keen to get out to a spot to shoot some good fish, so you decide to take him along with you on your next trip. You both have a great time and shoot some great fish, take a few pictures and go home with some awesome stories. You then see that this friend has posted pictures of these awesome fish with clearly visible landmarks in the background, maybe he mentions the area in the post, or just simply tells his buddy who then tells his buddy, etc. You then go out to your secret spot expecting it to be vibrant and full of life as usual, but as you arrive you see other boats and other spearos already there and the previously full of life reef now has almost nothing left on it. This is what spot burning is, you share your secret spot with someone who then shares it with someone else and so on and in no time your secret gem of a spot is now void of life and you need to go searching again. Listen in for a great chat on this topic that is so close to so many spearos and fishermen alike. The ethics of keeping spots secret, how to find better spots without compromising and pissing off other spearos in the process and how to treat and manage the resource that is the ocean in your local area.
Message from Matt (@cutprofessor): “I found an app called photoroom. You can change the background of any photo in 30 seconds. Very handy.”
What do you think of spot burning? Have you been burnt or have you burnt a spot without realizing? Let us know in the comments or send a us a message if you’d like to stay anonymous!
00:12 Hello and welcome to the Noob Spearo Podcast!
06:05 Welcome Charlie and Andrew from Fine and Forage!
07:34 What is “spot burning”?
09:26 Some people care about keeping spots secret and some don’t
10:48 How much spearfishing is “too much” for an area?
12:27 Some species are more vulnerable to spearfishing than others
13:46 Noob spearos vs older spearos
16:36 The 30-30 agenda and MPA’s
19:44 What mistakes do noobs make?
21:35 How should you ask people for spots?
23:35 Metadata in photos
27:54 Physical community vs online community
30:59 Knowledge of good spots is a high barrier to entry
31:53 Find a local spearfishing shop and build a relationship with them.
35:30 Spearfishing is kind of like Pokemon
35:49 Do a charter trip
37:54 Be mindful of how you portray the spearfishing experience
41:37 There’s no licence to be able to dive, no basic skills explicitly required before starting – dangerous situations
43:02 Old Man Blue’s message
47:41 Good rules to not burn spots
50:02 How should you treat photos?
52:27 Treat people’s spots as a gift, not a right
54:03 Last thoughts and thank you to Charlie and Andrew
Considering that the United States has some of the most breathtaking spearfishing sites in the world, it’s no wonder that the interest in underwater activities continues to grow. This surge in water recreation has even prompted a marketing intelligence company to predict that the future of cameras is underwater. Allegedly, by 2027, the niche market will even be worth $15 billion. But you don’t have to wait until then to get in the game. If you want to experience the underwater wonderland like never before, you first have to find the camera for you.
Campark ACT74 Action Camera
If you’re pretty new to underwater photography and aren’t ready to shell out the big bucks, then this Campark camera is a good place to start. One of the more affordable action cameras on the market, this model will cost you anywhere between $50-60. Though despite its wallet-friendly price, the Campark ACT74 can still record in super 4K, is waterproof up to 33 feet, and has a two-inch HD screen with a 170-degree wide-angle lens. Unlike other cameras, a Campark74 already comes with useful accessories such as dual rechargeable batteries, a charging cable, clip mounts, brackets, and a waterproof case that increases its waterproof threshold to 98 feet.
Coleman C40WP Waterproof Digital Camera
A user-friendly option from the world of digital cameras, the Coleman C40WP is a waterproof and cost-efficient model that is perfect for beginners and seasoned spearfishers looking for a lightweight camera. Easy to handle thanks to its handheld size and 2.5” LCD, the C40WP also has full HD capacities that let you shoot 20-MP stills and 1080p videos. Plus, its shockproof and freeze-proof capabilities mean you can easily shoot in temperatures as low as -10 degrees C and down 10-feet depths without any extra casing.
Olympus Tough TG-6
If your idea of underwater fun involves some pretty gnarly waves and more extreme hunting, then you’ll need an equally tough camera. Enter, the Olympus Tough TG-6, which was made for such demanding pursuits. Using an all-metal body with dual locks on either hatch, the TG-6 is allegedly freeze-proof, crush-proof, dust-proof, shockproof up to 7 feet, and—most notably, for spearfishers—waterproof. Priced at $424, it isn’t the cheapest of the bunch, nor is it the sleekest. However, what you’re paying for is the somewhat analog-looking quality of this handheld camera, which is what keeps it more durable than others. Aside from a 12-MP sensor and anti-reflective coating, the TG-6 also has new white balance modes which help to enhance and capture colors underwater.
Paralenz Vaquita Dive Action Cam
Undoubtedly, the most expensive model on our list, the $700 Paralenz Vaquita Dive Action Camera is best for serious underwater photographers. Released just last year, this action camera has been specifically designed to satisfy the demands of water-based photography. Its ergonomic cylinder tube form and 240-gram weight make it easy to handle. Waterproof up to 115 feet and shockproof up to 16 feet, the Paralenz Vaquita can also handle temperatures of up to -40 degrees C. What’s more this camera has white balance modes that ensure every 12 MP-still and 4K 60fps/30fps can capture all the hues underwater. The Paralenz Vaquita also has a GPS, a 9-axis gyroscope, and an accelerometer.
Of course, should you purchase any of these cameras, it’s best to brush up on both your spearfishing andunderwater photography skills. Practice your buoyancy and take plenty of test shots (with both the spear and the camera). Before you know it you’ll be a master of both!
While this is no doubt an enjoyable hobby, it can cost a pretty penny. Luckily, there are a bunch of resources online, like articles, podcasts, and videos. To make it easier, we’ve even compiled some of our favorites into an ultimate noob guide that you can check out here. Once you’ve done some reviewing, then you can make an even more informed decision about what camera you need. Then, all that’s left to do is take the plunge.
Words by Eric Anderson (@eric_janderson) | Images by Aiden Brown (@aiden__brown)
It grows fast and can get really thick. How the hell do you dive in that stuff?
Well, let me tell you there are some techniques to navigating these fast-growing algae. Macrocystis Pyrifera or Giant Kelp is common along the coast of the North Eastern Pacific of California and in Southern oceans around South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. In ideal conditions of summer sun and cold waters, giant kelp can grow upwards of eighteen inches a day.
Macrocystis Pyrifera or Giant Kelp
A kelp forest can look very different depending on the reef structure and age of the kelp bed. Kelp connects to reef structure or rocks with a holdfast, a system of foothold ‘roots’ that grab hold tight, for the kelp stalks and fronds to grow all the way to the surface. When a kelp bed gets a thick system of stalks and grows to the point the kelp can lay flat on the surface, the kelp bed can be very thick and create a twelve-plus inch mat on the surface. Sometimes the kelp is so thick you could probably walk across it if you were relatively lightweight (I am not relatively lightweight and would never try this :))
Eric resting on the surface amongst a kelp forest
Techniques to dive in kelp come with practice and experience. The first step is to be comfortable and calm. Of course, this is critical in diving in general but much more so when you feel like the ocean is closing in on you. It can feel very claustrophobic with your head, shoulders, and body floating on the surface surrounded by kelp. Not to mention a mask, snorkel, weight belt, fins, etc. to potentially get stuck and caught up in the kelp. Remember this, if you do get caught by kelp on your descent, ascent, or on the surface do not move quickly; you need to slow down. Slow your movements and identify the kelp stalk on your head, mask, foot, or elsewhere and grab the kelp in both hands, and use a quick snapping pull (like snapping a belt), and more often than not it should rip apart easily. If it doesn’t, make a single wrap in each hand and try again. Pull hard! If this doesn’t work, get out your dive knife and go to work. The number one rule is to not panic and keep in mind kelp can be snapped in between two fingers. Stay calm and rip it apart!
Once you’re comfortable in the kelp and ready to start making your dive, there are a few tips that can help make this a productive and efficient process. First, keep a low horizontal profile. Think about your snorkel placement. Having a snorkel dangle of the left or right side of your head, in my opinion, is a recipe to get tangled or have your snorkel ripped off your mask. I prefer to keep my snorkel attached to the back of my mask strap. This way when I make a dive my snorkel lays flat against my left should/neck area and on the ascent lays flat again against me. When I surface, I’m able to pop my snorkel in my mouth and only expose the back of my head and mask strap to the surface for my breathe up. Depending on what you’re hunting, remaining stealthy and quiet on the surface is critical. Popping up through the kelp, splashing around, and getting tangled does no one any good, and the fish will laugh at you. Remain stealthy and quiet!
When you begin your duck dive, leg placement is key. If the kelp is sparse and few and far between, this is not as big of an issue. If the kelp is really thick, there is a technique I use. Placing both legs against the kelp on the surface, I begin my dive with a quick bend at the waist forward and one hand pull down. This will clear me from the surface and the kelp to make my first kick under the canopy. For a straight efficient dive, use the kelp stalk like a dive line to make it to the bottom. Once down, it’s always fun to lay on your back and admire the great kelp forest before hunting its inhabitants.
Once you’re ready for your ascent, there is a great technique to clear the kelp and make room for your head and mask. As I get close to the surface, I use my left arm at a 45-degree angle in front of me, from left to right, and place my left hand to the right of my head and mask. Once my left-hand breaks the surface, I sweep the kelp from right to left with my left arm and clear a small hole. This allows me to pop the back of my head and snorkel in a small clearing, unobstructed. It takes practice but it can be done!
Eric with his best Ling from 2020 📷: @aiden__brown | Gun 36” mid-handle by @captainblyspearguns | reef was lit up with @darkwatersdiveco V11 light saber
There are many techniques to diving in kelp and these are a few that really help me. What I’ve seen and learned is that it takes practice time and time again to perfect diving in thick kelp. It can be a frustrating mess if you move quickly, get frustrated, and do not remain calm. If you’re concerned with kelp, go out slick without any spearing gear. Get used to it and practice, introduce one piece of gear at a time if you have to. It’s always a bummer to see a new diver get frustrated and give up because the kelp is too great a challenge.
Lastly, enjoy the kelp forest! This is a living ecosystem that deserves nothing but our utmost respect.
Wandering in the Kelp forests of the Arctic waters of the North by @dr_kelsea
Vibin’ to some of my husband, @kallesjolund ‘s ocean and love inspired music, “Liquid Love”, and getting lost in my nerdy thoughts.
Did you know that many cold water species of kelp contain compounds that fight cancer and kill germs?
To name a few: Porphyrin, Carragenan, Laminarin, Fucoidin, Meroditerpinoids, Polypheol, Flavoids, and more yet to be discovered have shown promise against Colorectal cancers, Breast cancers, and other types of tumors.
Imagine what other discoveries can be made in these forests to heal the human body?
I know one thing for certain, my heart, mind, and soul are recharged and at peace, every time I go for a “walk in the woods.” I’m always vibin’ in Kelp.
We really should do our best to understand, preserve, and protect them. Kelp forests truly are our planet’s lungs and lifeline.
Music composed by and copyright (C) to Kalle Sjølund.
Today’s episode is with Andre Rerekura and Travis Corken (Samuel Rutherford couldn’t make it to the interview) about their new documentary: A Journey Beneath! A great film with some truly awesome visuals and an even better soundtrack, what’s more is that Shrek narrated parts of it! Amazing destinations, memorable fish and the theme of friendship – do yourself a favour and have a watch! Filmed over several years, it documents the travels of lifelong friends Andre and Travis as they go around the world to spearfish in awesome destinations, including an almost fatal incident that only strengthened their bond. A real treat of an experience for spearos, let us know what you thought of the film and let us know what you thought of this episode!
Today’s episode is with two ladies on the WA coast who have started a really cool initiative: Life’s Short, Stay Moist! Old Man Blue suggested Rachel and Larissa for the show and we are glad they did! These ladies are both great divers, have a passion for getting other women into the sea! We had a great time chatting about their own journey’s into spearfishing, using load assists, the talks they give at Adreno and the trips and events they run. If you’d like to find out more, have a listen to this interview and check out their Instagram and Facebook page. Thank you both for being on the show this week!
If you don’t know what a podcast is don’t worry you’re not alone. A podcast is simply recorded audio (like a radio show) but it’s not live. It’s also often been edited and then distributed around the internet to different podcast directories (think podcast apps) such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and many others. Watch this short video to learn how to subscribe and download a podcast.
Audio (and video) Podcasts have become a popular way for people to learn, become connected and engaged with spearfishing. Check out this list of spearfishing Podcasts available for you to download, subscribe and listen to. If we are missing one, let us know in the comments below!
The SpearFactor Podcast features spearfishermen and watermen from around the world to share their experiences in the ocean in order to help us all become better divers and stewards of the ocean. The experts that Bret Whitman has on the show covers all facets of a life based around the ocean. These areas include surfing, freediving, boating, gear manufacturing, fitness training, and cooking. The goal of having this diversity is to help you become a more educate and complete spearfishing ambassador. Find out more at www.spearfactor.com
As a one-stop-shop for spearfishing, foraging, culinary content, activism and conservation, Fin + Forage seeks to build a community around a shared passion for wild and responsible food. The cornerstone of Fin + Forage is a multi-media hub for educational content. With contributions from the spearfishing community, scientists and chefs, Fin + Forage promotes safe diving and sustainable practices while providing the tools to become a better and more well-rounded hunter-gatherer. Hosted by Ryan Gentry!
We love catching fish and we want to share the stoke with you. Our goal is to bring on members of the fishing community to share tips and stories to help you catch more fish. We cover a wide variety of fishing methods including surf fishing, spearfishing, inshore and offshore fishing. If you have suggestions for what you’d like us to cover, shoot us a DM on Instagram @castandspear. Tight lines and we’ll see you on the water!
Join me as I take a deep dive into all things Freediving and explore even more about this amazing sport that has give me so much. My name is Ted Harty and I teach people to freedive deeper, stay longer and become safer. I’m the founder of Immersion Freediving as well my new pride and joy www.FreedivingSafety.com. Dive safe out there, it’s not even that hard.
Taz was one half of the “Podcast Yarns With Az And Taz”, he’s a Far North Queensland Australian Banana Farmer, Recreational Fisherman/Spear fisherman on the Great Barrier Reef, Jiujitsu Practitioner, Musician and Passionate Family man. Come have a listen to all the truths and tales from all the crazy crew he invites into his Podcave and share his Yarns with ya mates!!
The all ocean, fishing and spearfishing podcast with all the excitement and fun but none of the wank! Hosted by stand up comedian and WA Raw Winner, Squirly and fishing and spearfishing champion Leigh Mitchell.
Norwegian Spearfishing Podcast Hosted by Ivan Knudseth & Ørjan Dyrnes. Just Add Water er en podcast som tar for seg den fantastiske verdenen i, ved og under vann. Her vil vi snakke om undervannsjakt, fridykking, fangst, matlaging, turer, konkurranser og generelt alt som har med havet og de muligheten du har med en gang du setter på deg en våtdrakt, strammer dykkermasken, trekker pusten og dykker ned i en verden full av eventyr. Bli med oss da vel!
Exploring our planet’s wildlife through genuine conversations with scientists, conservationists, nature lovers, and individuals who have had profound experiences with wild animals. Martin Kitto is a New Jersey based spearo and curious guy with an engaging style. His show features several spearfishing specific interviews and episodes. Listen in.
Uvpodcast handler om fridykning og uvjagt. Morten Rosenvold Villadsen forfatter til ‘Hold Vejret – en bog om fridykning’ og blogger har forskellige gæster i studiet og der bliver talt om rejser, fisk, vand, dykning uden vejrtrækning, rekordforsøg og der bliver delt ud af tips og tricks fra mange års erfaring med rejser med harpun, snorkel og våddragt i bagagen.
The Spearfishing Podcast I wish existed when I was starting out. I am your host Roman Castro from SpearoBlog. I started THE SPEAR to interview other Spearos and Spearfishing companies to learn from their experiences and share them with YOU. This Podcast is now no longer updated.
This Ocean Life Podcast. 130+ episodes. Weekly podcast series capturing the stories and perspectives of people around the world who have based their lives on the ocean. Fishing, free diving, art, music, surfing, paddling, spearfishing, conservation, sailing, anything in the ocean… Hosted by Josh Pederson, from Santa Cruz, California, USA. This podcast has not been updated for a while.
Join Harvesting Nature’s very own, Justin Townsend and the HN Crew as they guide you through the world of cooking wild fish and game meat, their adventures to obtain food, and the lessons learned along the way. Harvesting Nature is a media outlet with the main focus to educate and inspire those wishing to live the outdoor lifestyle with a focus of hunting and fishing for food. Follow along with us as we help you Find your Wilderness Please reach out with questions and comments to [email protected]
The official podcast of “Adventureman Dan” and his adventures around the world. Here you will find many in depth discussions about all things adventure! Stories, advice, how to and of course a few laughs from his exploits spearfishing, sailing, freediving, van life, and much much more. Enjoy!
Salty journals is a podcast for ocean lovers. You may be a surfer, kitesurfer, Freediver, Spearfisher, or just really into hanging on the beach at the weekend. This podcast brings together stories and tales from ocean addicts.
Today’s episode is with Tony Alcock, one half of “Podcast Yarns With Az And Taz” team, he now has his own podcast! A surfer, musician, jujitsu practioner, spearo and banana farmer from Far North Queensland, he has been spearing for the past 30 years and has a ton of valuable insights! Find out about Flinders Reef, his love for boats, hunting tips, dealing with sharks and crocodiles and how he has recently started diving past 10 meters with the help of Az! Come have a listen for a good laugh and some great tips, let us know what you thought of this episode in the comments!
00:12 Good day and welcome to the Noob Spearo Podcast!
01:01 What all does Tony do?
01:29 Announcements and some sad news
06:36 Hello Tony!
07:40 Tell us about yourself
09:28 How long have you been spearfishing?
10:29 Line angling vs spearfishing
10:54 Half the day fishing and half spearing
11:19 Tides and crayfish: painted and green
13:54 How do you cook crays/lobsters? How do you prepare them?
15:16 Spearfishing with Az and his great buddy system
16:24 A lot of your diving is shallow, why is it so dangerous? You need a buddy after 10m
17:24 Are you diving in current?
17:55 Where are you and where do you boat out to?
19:00 The lifestyle up there is very different
20:25 What it like being a banana farmer?
21:05 Full moon makes your fruit grow quicker on the week leading up to it
21:19 Being a farmer you’re more in tune with the weather and seasons
24:10 Back to boats, you’re selling one now?
24:47 I’m going back to an aluminium boat
27:20 Tell us about your boat history
29:41 Are you someone who can just fix everything on a boat?
30:47 Flinders reef and a funny story
33:23 What do you shoot out there and what good stories do you have from there?
37:00 Coral trout
37:56 Fishing with a big mothership
39:07 What do you want to do there this time?
39:27 Are sharks a problem out there?
40:32 What’s your experience being in the water with tiger sharks?
41:38 The smaller sharks are the more aggressive ones
44:36 White and Black tip reef sharks
45:44 Have you been spooled before with your reel gun?
46:46 What about jelly fish?
47:29 Tell us about surfing
50:46 Good boating behavior and how to be a good boatie
54:44 We’re going on a spearing trip, not a snorkeling trip
56:35 Some people are more freediver than spearo
57:35 How do you approach and hunt Jacks?
59:01 Great hunting tip
01:00:10 What’s your biggest Jack?
01:00:59 So you’ve been spearing deeper lately? What has Az been teaching you?
01:02:31 A dive watch was a great investment
01:04:08 Tuck your chin into your chest when you dive down, slow down and relax
01:05:39 Weather apps
01:07:42 Do you pay attention to chlorophyll and water temp?
01:08:21 Barramundi and crocodiles
01:10:40 Avoid swimming with crocs
01:11:19 Cone shells
01:13:11 Tell us about your podcast
01:14:31 Funny story with music and Youtube
01:15:53 What’s in your dive bag?
01:18:02 GoPro’s and masks
01:19:49 You have anxiety for a reason
01:20:57 Suits with kevlar
01:23:08 Spearo Q&A
What’s the best piece of advice you have been given?
What would you do differently if you started over?
What’s the best spearfishing lesson you’ve learned?
Today’s episode is with Derek Marshall Dunning, president of the South African Underwater Fishing Federation, founder of DMD Fins, freediving instructor, national judge, master freediver and absolute spearfishing nut in Cape Town, South Africa! He along with South African Freediving Federation president Matt Stow (referenced in the episode a few times), run NAUI Freediving Africa and offer a wide variety of freediving and spearfishing courses. Find out about spearfishing in Cape Town, how to hunt local fish like Cape Bream (known as Hotties to the locals) Mussel Cracker and Red Roman, some great ways to cook Yellowtail and some remedies for difficult equalization. You can buy a pair of fins from him as well and you can do one of his courses and if you’re in Cape Town come and join the Blue Spearos Spearfishing Club, they have a telegram group that is full of people who love spearfishing!
We hope you enjoy this episode, let us know what you think in the comments!
00:12 Welcome back to the Noob Spearo Podcast!
06:55 Welcome Derek
07:42 How long have you been involved in spearfishing in South Africa?
08:38 Was freediving natural to you?
10:36 Getting back into the water
11:16 You have a sticky left ear, tell us about your equalizing history
12:38 What do you do to fix this?
13:45 Medicine or training your body to equalize better?
15:22 Snort salt water
15:32 Tell me about your courses
17:15 Weighting for new divers
20:01 TV interview about spearfishing
22:32 The value of teaching basic skills
23:24 What common problems do you find in your students?
24:47 “How do you hold your breath for longer?”
25:26 Diving with better divers and spearfishing clubs
26:48 Memorable fish in SA and how to hunt Mussel Cracker
29:56 Yellowtail recipes
32:54 Merits of diving in the shallows
35:36 Tell us about conditions in Cape Town
37:51 We travel for big fish
38:37 What is your approach to spearfishing?
39:40 Cape Bream – The Hottentot, good eating?
40:21 How do you find Cape Bream and Red Roman?
41:28 What is an experience that scared you?
43:39 We went through a series of Matt being a dick
44:52 You meet a lot of interesting people and make good friends
45:42 Veterans Vault: DMD Fins
47:43 Plastic fins vs composites vs carbon
51:17 I was a gearslut with a rolling tab at Rabitech
52:10 The value of pool training and being in a club
53:33 The value of doing a spearfishing course
54:09 The history of spearfishing clubs in Cape Town
55:45 Fuzzy takes new spearos out into the sea
56:14 Enter the competitions
58:15 What foot pockets have you settled on?
59:14 Woman in spearfishing in SA, Mariette De Jager and Talya Davidoff
01:01:32 Competitive freediving vs spearfishing – head space
01:03:57 What makes a good spearo, my fish nemesis
01:06:21 More funny stories
01:08:52 What’s in your dive bag?
01:10:21 What is Hydroglide?
01:12:10 Where can people buy your gear?
01:14:37 Spearo Q&A
Best piece of advice you’ve been given for spearfishing
If you could start over, what would you do differently?
What’s something you do differently in your spearfishing?
What does spearfishing mean to you?
01:16:46 “If there’s water, we dive” – Thank you Derek!
Today’s episode is with Sam Clothier of the Wet Mammal channel on Youtube! From the UK and now based in Sydney, he’s a very interesting dude, quite well traveled and absolutely froths on spearing! He makes great underwater content, has done a Hike and Spear video series and his latest series is called “Spearfishing The Undesirables” where he tries and tastes the so called “undesirable” fish species to see if they’re terrible or if everyone is missing out on some hidden gems, examples include Bonito, Longfin Pike, the Old Wife and the Southern Fusilier to name a few. How to hunt them, prepare them and make them taste great! We also chat about Sam’s own spearfishing journey and how he spent many years consistently hyperventilating before a dive, training advice and some actionable tips for Noob Spearos! An awesome guy and a great chat, we hope you enjoy this episode! Let us know your thoughts in the comments!
02:48 Hello and welcome Sam!
3:19 Wind ruining viz in South East Queensland – diving the tweed river
04:16 Diving in structure and out of the way of dropping rocks
05:45 Who are you and where do you come from?
06:50 Starting to spearfish
07:50 Using scuba gear for spearfishing: Knife and fin advice
08:45 Starting scuba and doing a PADI course
10:44 Scuba vs Freediving physical demands
11:30 What obstacles did you encounter?
12:07 Not equalizing
14:33 Why is it bad?
15:18 How did you stop?
16:54 CO2 training
18:03 What other training do you do?
18:41 Spearfishing bit you hard
21:00 What makes you choose not to shoot a particular fish?
21:35 What are “forgivable sins” for new spearos? Shooting illegal fish, bag limits and size limits?
24:09 What’s it like in the UK and Sydney? Closed seasons and closed areas
25:58 What about looking for fish identification on social media?
The sense that somethings not right and the constant distraction like a buzzing bee hovering around your head.
Yep, you’ve just seen a shark OR your imagination (or 6th sense) has just triggered your anxiety. Not a pleasant feeling and one that most of us who dive in waters with plenty of the ‘men in grey suits’ aka ‘the taxman’ can empathize with. Although, like many things in life that scare you, exposure can steadily desensitize you. The caveat to this is to NEVER lose your respect for sharks OR believe that you ‘have control of them’ because you don’t.
“Newbie spearo here (got my first fish the other day) with a question: How do I manage shark anxiety? I know the stats and ‘rarity’ of being attacked, but I just can’t shut off the anxiety switch. I need to get past this as providing for myself is a large life goal. Cheers for your help in advance.” – Lee (Rewritten from a Facebook Group Spearfishing Victoria)
Some good advice and wisdom was shared following this post;
Galin“Someone told me that a trip to QLD and diving with the blokes up there can break any shark anxiety. Maybe worth a go?”
Blake“Second Galin. I went to QLD and dived in some crappy vis. When I got back to Melbourne I didn’t even think about sharks anymore.”
Luke “With any anxiety, you slowly introduce yourself to the environment that is making you feel that way until your brain no longer perceives it as a threat. So start by doing short trips and you’ll eventually adjust.”
These guys have tapped into some wisdom here. Psychologists describe this process as desensitization and if done gradually can habituate spearos to obstructive fears. Over time they find that their reactions to sharks and/or situations where they begin to experience anxiety decreases. Exposure can help to weaken previously learned associations between sharks and bad outcomes (think JAWS movies). Possibly the greatest benefit to healthy shark exposure teaches spearos that they are capable of confronting their fears and can manage the anxiety. During positive exposure to sharks, a spearo can learn to attach new, more realistic beliefs about sharks, shark behavior and how to adapt their own personal response to them.
Accept anxiety, don’t fight it, sit with it and learn to bear it. It will diminish.
Learn breathing techniques to relax on the surface and reduce fear and anxiety.
Being in situations with sharks when the water is clean and the sharks are relatively calm can acclimatize you to the fear.
Turn fear into curiosity – learn about sharks. Observe their behaviour. Research their body language and cues. Knowledge dispels fear (gradually).
Ground yourself in the moment by paying attention to the details.
Prepare to not be prepared. Do what is in your control and listen to your dive buddy.
Is it worth it?
Sharks an be unpredictable and dangerous, they can kill you. They are often big, unimaginably fast, sometimes sneaky and you are in their environment however MOST of the time they are wary of us and you can learn techniques to dissuade their attention. You can also avoid shark red flag moments to minimize the risk too;
🚩 Dusk – when the last light of the day hits the water, sharks can be at their most erratic.
🚩 Struggling Fish – blood in the water is far less of a turn-on for sharks than a fish flailing on a hook and line OR a spear. Dispatch quickly and spearfish in pairs/groups.
🚩 Dirty Water – Brisbane Bullsharks are notorious for their confidence in dirty water and they aren’t alone. When you see big sharks in <6/7Meters (20ft) vis, get out and move spots.
“I don’t want to not live because of my fear of what could happen. If you stop exploring, everything becomes smaller. Fear is an unbelievable motivator. Fear is a natural response. Without it, we wouldn’t survive. Meet up with your fears. If you’re afraid of sharks, go learn all about sharks. Get into the water with one.” – Laird Hamilton.
What Do You Think?
Now I’d like to hear from you:
Which technique from today’s post are you going to use first?
Are you going to get in the water with sharks? Or try some breathing techniques to calm down?
Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now.
There are plenty of ways to improve your spearfishing. Here are five spearfishing mistakes to avoid next time you go diving. This list was sent to us by Eckart Benkenstein, spearo and freediving instructor
This is a classic mistake that we’ve all made and is generally caused by diving out of our depth or not being confident enough to reach the bottom. Improving your diving ability will improve your depth. Having a good buddy that is drilled in good buddy technique will also allow you to relax a little more and push a little deeper knowing your buddy is there for you.
This mistake also limits your ability to shoot reef fish as you are out in the open for everything to see. Being on the bottom will conceal you and allow fish to unwittingly move into range of your gun.
Big predators of the grey variety are often seen swimming mid water. Not something we want to emulate if we want to get closer to the fish.
Another classic Noob mistake. Fast movements underwater have a couple of implications. Firstly fast movements tell fish that you’re a predator. Sharks move quickly when they’re agitated and feeding. Pelagic fish will move quickly when in a feeding frenzy as well. It sends the message that you’re a threat that should be avoided.
Secondly, fast movements increase your heart rate underwater and that means increased oxygen consumption, loss of relaxation and ultimately shorter dives.
You need the right tools for the job. It’s a simple task to get the right gear. Anyone local that’s been diving in your local area will tell you what you need. Knowing what to buy straight up will save you money and you’ll get comfortable using the right gear from the start. I’m not talking about brands here, though there are some to avoid. I’m talking about the practicalities of your gear like the length of your gun, thickness of your wetsuit and the stiffness of your fins to name a few.
Don’t be afraid to ask a retailer, local diver or someone from a club, it will save you time and money.
Just swimming around
Eckart says a common problem he sees is guys just swimming around hoping to bump into a fish. Eckart says you should target a fish and and learn the conditions that will help you to find that target fish in your area. Wind, tides, water temperature and any seasonal migrations are a great place to start. Get on the Google and do some research or get into a club and learn off the locals. You only get so many hours in the water, make the most of them.
If you manage to overcome the midwater warrior phase and get yourself on the bottom you may be making bunny ears with your fins. You might have your body pressed low against the bottom ready to strike but it will mean little if your fins are waiving around above your head. Get long and low to keep your fins connected to the bottom. High fins let the fish know exactly where you are like waving a flag above your head.
Q2. Is it OK to supplement additional photos with beautiful spearo photography (e.g. the hunt/the adventure/the dive/the kelp/etc) to bolster our submissions?
Q3. Hey Shrek bro, did you guys need photos with the recipes we submit or just the recipe? I have a few but don’t have photos at the moment?
You have it right , photos are pretty important and you can’t even submit the recipe unless there is at least 1 photo. The good news is that submissions are open to Aug 30 so you have plenty of time to get some together if you have a chance to spear and cook. We have 39 submissions as of 13.07.2021 so far:) – Shrek]
Q4. I’m having trouble uploading photos to the link. The error message says my photo files are not compatible. What can I do?
Sending photos through the submissions form helps us out with the editing process. However, if you are having trouble sending them, don’t worry: we’ve got your back! Send us your files via WeTransfer or Dropbox to [email protected].
(Please make sure you use the same email in both the recipe submission and the WeTransfer/Dropbox, so we can identify your photos)
Q1. Many of our recipes are super simple, like the scallop ceviche, or the dry aged sushi, but there is one aspect of the meal that requires time (e.g. making tapioca pearl chicharrones is suuuper easy, but takes about 3 hours to dehydrate before frying… or aging a fish is literally leaving it in a bag on ice for 2-4 days… or making sushi rice is really easy, but rice takes like 45 min to cook… or making fish stock takes 30 min but you can work on other aspects of the meal while it renders). Are these recipes OK to include and submit?
Q2. What happens if you get too many Ceviche Recipes or Baked Fish Recipes?
Q3. Would you be interested in a section of your book for staples that are used in many recipes like a standalone section for how to make sushi rice or fish stock or how to make rad looking garnishes that are easy and make any meal look 100x cooler? Then in the recipes for say a sushi roll, instead of adding all the text on how to make sushi rice, you just say refer to page xx.
Yes, I’m super keen on this. I am going to have some dedicated sections for cornerstone content like a guide to smoking fish then 3 smoked fish recipes. I’m super keen on your idea for this.
Q4. Who do I put as the Spearo Chef Author if I am part of an Organization?
Name, Organization for example; Isaac ‘Shrek’ Daly, Noob Spearo
Q5. Can I sign up to get an early copy of the first book?
Yes, we have an editing and design team doing their best to make sure the recipe is presented in a way that readers from everywhere can read and adapt to their area. We also have design and space limitations!
Round Table Discussion with Shrek, Bret Whitman and Jon Stenstrom about Seaspiracy
Today’s episode is likely to ruffle some feathers! Join Shrek as he has a really in depth discussion with Bret Whitman of the Spearfactor Podcast as well as Jon Stenstrom of the Cast and Spear Podcast about all things “Seaspiracy”! The good, the bad and everything in between. If you haven’t seen the Netflix film yet, Seaspiracy is a film by Ali Tabrizi that shows the environmental impact of the fishing industry, highlighting the problem of overfishing and plastic waste in our oceans. The film definitely brings up good points and highlights some really serious issues but also falls short on several different topics. Shrek, Bret and Jon go through the film and apply a spearo’s eye to it to see if ultimately we should all stop eating fish, as the film suggests. Give us your thoughts, whether you agree or disagree, let us know!
Kia kaha, kia maia, kia manawanui // Be strong, be brave, be steadfast
Join Shrek as he chats with Renee Taylor, speech therapist, business owner, lover of the sea and co-founder of the Salt Sisters, an initiative that connects women to the ocean, themselves, and to each other through bespoke Wāhine Weekends and Salt Sessions. Above all else she is a lover of the natural world and a frothing speara to say the least! Come have a listen as they chat about Salt Sisters and what they do, how you can join, what her journey in spearfishing has been and what it means to her, they also have a good time speaking about many things in New Zealand! Have a listen and let us know what you think!
03:30 How did your speech therapy start?
05:39 Desire to get into the natural world, scuba diving
06:30 Getting a free “apprenticeship”
08:00 Getting into freediving with the Auckland freediving club
09:00 Freediving connected you to the ocean
09:34 Spearfishing is barbaric
10:58 Frothing on spearing and how SALT Sisters started
12:00 The healing power of freediving
13:50 Respect and Fear for the ocean
14:51 What problems did you encounter when you started freediving?
17:00 Are the numbers important?
17:58 Spearfishing competitions and how they’ve changed
20:01 What hunting and equipment challenges have you faced?
22:08 Wetsuits for women
25:54 Business opportunity
28:25 You’re passionate about your message, how do you get it across?
31:45 Where are your origins?
32:58 Wahine Divers
34:54 Tell me about SALT Sisters and the events you run
37:17 Meeting her business partner Amber
37:48 How’s Covid changed things?
38:20 What events have you run so far?
40:46 Learning the freediving before the spearing
41:29 Freediving ambitions and courses
43:08 SALT Intro pool sessions
43:27 Where can people find you? (See link below)
44:03 What are you busy learning now?
45:02 Finding less common, more sustainable fish
46:57 Getting scientists and marine biologists involved
47:30 Rewilding weekend
48:27 Sage advice
48:42 How are you cooking Jack Mackeral and Koheru?
Interview with Harry Foster – the Master Chef Spearo
Today’s interview is with Harry Foster, the Masterchef Spearo! Apart from being an exceptional chef, he is also an absolute frother when it comes to spearing and has a passion for connecting the catching to the cooking. Learn some chef skills that every spearo should know, what kitchen utensils you should have and the biggest mistakes spearos make with fish in the kitchen! We’ve included two of the recipes mentioned in the show so you can go have a go yourself!
Whether working as a chef on a remote island or out spearing or even just taking pictures, he has a wealth of knowledge on the natural world and the animals that live around him. His Instagram stories will show you exactly what we mean. We think you will enjoy today’s episode and we hope that you will try the recipes! Let us know your thoughts in the comments!
If you haven’t seen his Instagram page yet, do yourself a favour and go look! Also check out his website for some amazing recipes!
01:00 Joe Murphy message
02:05 Old Man Blue voicenote
04:30 Welcome Harry Foster, how did you begin spearfishing?
05:58 Diving in Far North Queensland
07:42 How far away are you from the Great Barrier Reef?
08:55 The appeal of inshore reefs and bad conditions
Today’s interview is with Bert Keulder – the Old Man Blue, as you may know him. He’s done everything you can think of in the water, including being tossed into the air by a Great White shark! A well traveled, highly experienced spearo that is deeply in love with the ocean, he has done it all and has an absolute wealth of knowledge from his years growing up near Cape Town, South Africa and living, working and spearfishing all around the world throughout his life. We chat about his early childhood days being dragged around the kelp forests in the Atlantic on an inflated car tube, his days in the military playing underwater hockey to when he worked as a diamond miner along the West Coast of Africa, to living and diving in Fiji with commercial fishermen until finally settling down in WA where he lives and dives today. He is an excellent resource and spearos of any experience level can learn a lot from him. He also makes exceptionally high quality dive gear that is designed to work well and not stop working for a long, long time. If he can give you one piece of advice, ENJOY your diving, be relaxed, take your time and really take in the experience.
Let us know what you think of today’s episode and be sure to check out Old Man Blue’s store.
Summary of club activity: Blue Spearos is a spearfishing club that has been formed in the Cape by spearo diver Faiz Abrahams(Fuzzy). The Blue Spearos has grown steadily over the past couple of years with members from all over South Africa. Should you require any information regarding the club, feel free to email us at [email protected] Requests to join the club can also be sent to this email address.
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I recorded this interview live on a recent Patron Funded trip to South Australia. I stopped off on the way back to Melbourne in Portland, Victoria and got to chat to Aaron overlooking some of his pristine diving/lobster chasing grounds. This interview has heaps of great intel for people wanting to chase Southern Rock Lobster, Southern Bluefin Tuna or even just start spearing in the Victoria/South Australia area. Listen in to Aaron Edmonds share his story and stoke right here!
04:00 Welcome to Aaron Edmonds – live in Portland, Victoria. Getting started spearfishing and a bit about his commercial diving experience.
08:45 Early lessons learned spearfishing
10:00 Chasing Lobster or Crayfish
21:30 Scary Moment | Cramping Out in a Cave
29:25 Funny Moments with Jamie
32:00 Underwater Photography | Catching the Bug
40:00 Southern Bluefin Tuna | The Learning Curve!
52:50 Taking out juniors and sharing the stoke
58:40 Spearo Q&A
Who has been the most influential person in your spearfishing journey?
What are the best spearfishing resources for new spearos?
What is your dream spearfishing destination and fish?
Could you describe what the spearfishing experience means to you in one sentence
Spearfishing can be seen as a costly sport to get started in and with the huge range of gear for sale these days, it can so easily end up costing a lot more than it needs to. Being a beginner and trying to buy your first pieces of gear can be an intimidating and tricky thing to get right. What do I need to buy new? What can I get away with buying 2nd hand? How do I look after this gear I have invested in? Join Shrek, Trevor Ketchion and Captain Dan Walsh as they discuss being a tightarse spearo and give a run down and discussion on all the basic equipment that a new spearo would need as well as cost cutting and DIY tips, maintenance, what to look for when buying 2nd hand and ultimately where you can cut corners and not cut yourself short. Spearos pride themselves on being able to adapt and be efficient, with our gear it’s no different. Are you a tightarse spearo? Have a listen and let us know what you think about these tips and tricks and comment your DIY tricks! Enjoy the episode!
03:28 Welcome to Trevor and Lincoln Smith message
05:00 Ashley Clark Email
06:56 Andrew Boulton Email
07:24 Spearfishing and Money Philosophy
08:08 Ben Vittino Voice Message
Basic Gear Purchasing
44:47 Rubbish Spearos
45:50 Weight Belts
48:14 Floats and Riglines
58:49 Dive Knives
01:02:05 Dive Bags
01:15:40 DIY Gear Maintenance
01:24:55 Bargain Bins, Discounted Items and Buying 2nd Hand
01:29:24 Getting Sponsored
01:33:35 Tips from Captain Dan Walsh
01:35:42 Final Thoughts
The Bottom Scratcher’s diver ladders – www.swimdean.com
Trevor runs a Facebook group called Rubbish Spearos, a funny name but it is a great initiative and fun way to clean up your local waterways. People post and compare “Deathpiles” of dozens of sinkers, lures, bits of plastic and even a few treasures found along the way! Go check it out! –> Rubbish Spearos
USA hosts its Biggest Freshwater Nationals in many years.
Despite COVID and an Easter weekend, the Copper State Freedivers of Arizona, hosted their first Freshwater National event in the Lake Pleasant, Arizona region on April 3.
Close to 90 divers, in 2 divisions: Mens and Mixed took 2643 fish in the 7 hour event. Legal species included Stripers, Shad, and Carp all were unlimited take as the lake is trying to reclaim the water for sports fish. Many fish were donated to the local Large Reptile rehab center, the largest in the Nation – Phoenix Herpetological Sanctuary.
9 divers shot over 100 fish;
Top diver in the Nation is Kelston McGuire of Colorado, with 147, that’s a fish every 2.45 minutes for 6+ hours non stop;
Top team shot 264 fish, Fernando Gutierrez and Darvil McBride, from Southern California;
Top Mixed doubles all came from Utah: #1 Shelby & Ryan Peterson, #2 Kenny & Maya Western, #3 Clay Palmer & Mike Kennedy;
Top Women were #1 Shelby Peterson, #2 Maya Western, #3 Mitsuki Hara.
**Thanks to all the great sponsors who keep these events alive**
This episode is all about getting the word out about the all new Australian Spearfishing Course (in association with AUF) that will reach the next generation of spearos. We discuss how Adam Stern, Tom Sandstrom and the AUF are getting qualified crew into clubs to help teach groms and new spearos coming up about basic safety and physiology. Tommy and Adam “We will be creating a freediving for Spearfishing course that we want to role out throughout the country over the next 12-18 months, which we hope to have available for free to auf club members or at a super cheap price.” Listen in as the boys drop some knowledge bombs while we learn about this cool new initiative!
Australian Spearfishing Courses | Important Times
07:00 @tommy_dozz introduction and background 09:30 The motivation behind doing the Freediving Instructor Course 15:00 Freediving courses for spearos? 22:00 Being a good spearfishing buddy 25:00 Pool training? Is it relevant for spearfishing? 35:00 Teaching people to spearfish 40:00 How Tommy started out in the water and introduction to spearfishing 42:00 Coffs Harbour Spearfishing Conditions and Fishery 44:20 Rotating your spearfishing through different spots 48:00 Adam Stern Drops In Late! 58:00 Three Active Components to Spearfishing | Equipment, Hunting and Freediving 61:00 Spearfishing Dolphin Fish aka MahiMahi 64:00 What happens in a Spearfishing Instructors Course?
What is in this spearfishing course?
What about the experience of the course? Did you have some characters in there?
This interview with Addrianna Reitenbach comes from a recommendation from Eric Anderson.
“Hey Shrek! Wanted to connect you with Addrianna who is spearheading the up-and-coming dive community SoCal Dive Babes (IG: @socaldivebabes). This group is all about building a solid dive community and providing mentorship to women divers who want to get into spearfishing. We’ve been chatting a bit on spearing and watching their trips to Baja and local waters, fundraisers, beach events, underwater pumpkin target shooting, hanging out with Julie Riffe…I thought it would make a great interview. Always stoked to hear more stories in the spearing community and this sounds like a good one. You know I’m a fan of the Pcast, so keep it coming brotha!” – Eric Anderson
Some of the highlights are; ‘trash fish’ chat, Southern California species and conditions, women in spearfishing, body language for hunting and more! Listen and subscribe!
Addrianna Reitenbach SoCal Dive Babes with Yellowtail
Justin Townsend joins me and shares 3 dynamite seafood recipes that are game changers! Justin hosts the Wild Fish and Game Podcast which is a food centric podcast where they talk about all aspects of hunting, fishing, and cooking of wild foods.Justin has been living in Key West, FL for the last 4 years and has taken up spearfishing in the last year. Justin made his way on spearfishing boats by applying his professionally trained fish chef skills, always helping out and bringing the stoke. Justin has been a hunter and angler since he was a child and has always enjoyed the outdoors. He was raised in Southeastern Oklahoma where hunting and fishing was used as a way to supplement home-grown and store-bought food so his values are very in-line what many of us Noobers hold dear.
Have a listen to this episode and try out one of the recipes he lays out!
There are basically two methods for how to aim a speargun, the point and tilt method and the instinctive method. In this article we will take a look at both styles and provide some tips to improve your accuracy.
The point and tilt method – Turbo’s Preference
The point and tilt aiming method is in my opinion the best place to begin with your spearfishing. It gets you into a routine and it’s replicable which allows you to adjust and work out where your gun is shooting. The point and tilt aiming method is where the hunter points the tip of the gun at the target and then brings up the handle of the gun so that the gun is pointing exactly at the target. The hunter uses their vision to align various points on the speargun. These points can include the muzzle, spear, spear notches, rubbers and handle to help aim. These points depend on the speargun style and hunters preference.
For example when using a Rob Allen closed muzzle speargun, align the v created by the back of the tensioned rubbers with the hole in the muzzle. This should provide you with consistent accuracy.
There are slight discrepancies between all guns so a systematic approach to testing the gun in a pool or the shallows is a good approach. A weighted thong (flip flop), piece of foam or even a plastic bag can be used for target practice. Position yourself at different distances and each time make a mental note of what you did and where the spear went. Repeat until you can replicate your shot placement consistently.
The instinctive method – Shrek’s Preference
Turbo – “The instinctive method is like shooting from the hip. The hunter through practice can point the gun at the fish and hit the target. I’ve not been able to do this yet so I stick to the point and tilt method.”
To recognise whether you use the instinctive method think about the last time you shot a good fish. Did you focus on your speargun and sighting down the barrel? or did you focus on a precise spot on the fish, then lift your gun and fire in a connected motion? If you sighted down the barrel you are probably like Turbo and you follow the point and tilt idea. If not there’s good and bad news for the instinctive style shooter. The bad news is that when your accuracy is out, discovering what is wrong can be more difficult than following a more methodical technique. For example; a ‘feel’ shooter will spend more time focusing on the fish rather than watching the flight of the shaft to see if they are shooting high or low. A feel shooter will also have more trouble adjusting to a new handle/style of speargun as they rely on the consistent performance and feel of their regular speargun. The good news for ‘feel’ shooters is that they can shoot fish from lots of different angles and it takes less time to manoeuvre and fire. Read below for further tips to improve accuracy.
Picking out a spot on the fish can greatly improve your chances. Here I have aimed where the Lateral line meets the gill plate. I didn’t quite get it but I got close enough.
Why you may be missing fish
Turbo – A few years ago after upgrading from my little timber gun to a 1.2m Euro I went from being a “dead eye” to not being able to hit the the side of a house and I just couldn’t work it out. I then stumbled across a document written by Rob Allen that explained what can affect the accuracy of a spear gun. Through experimentation Rob found that recoil was a major problem affecting accuracy and that lots of problems stemmed from grip pressure and overpowered rubbers. On a right handed shooter the recoil of the gun tends to send the shaft high and to the right whereas a left handed shooter will shoot high and to the left. Rob found that a soft grip and or overpowered rubbers exacerbated the problem greatly.
Skipper Jamie Lough has been using the same speargun since he started spearfishing and the results speak for themselves. He also has the same gun in different lengths, reducing variables. Here Jamie displays the sought after Sailfin Snapper sporting a clean headshot.
Turbo’s Tips for Improvement
Manufacturers have a formula for keeping their guns accurate. This will consist of rubber diameter, rubber length and spear diameter. Replication is the key to keeping consistency.
Keep your shoulder,elbow and wrist locked out when shooting to prevent recoil. Two hands is becoming popular as well.
Replicate your method so it becomes second nature. The less thinking and the more doing the better. It really does help to get some pool practice in. When you’re method becomes second nature you’re less likely to lose your head when that trophy fish swims within range.
In large schools of fish pick out the one fish.
Pick out a specific spot on that fish to aim at.
Make sure your safety latch is turned off before you dive. There’s nothing worse than getting everything right then having nothing happen when you pull the trigger.
Choose your gun and stand by it. The more you use it the better you will become with it. If you are going to have several lengths of gun then make them the same gun at different lengths.
Try a roller gun. Rollers have less recoil and are extremely accurate. You can read more on roller guns here.
Being able to aim your speargun and shoot accurately is vital to hitting fish cleanly and making good holding shots. To shoot a fish a poorly and have it tear off only to die is a waste of good fish and to be blunt, it’s cruel. It happens to everyone from time to time and is a part of hunting but just like our counterparts on land we too need to hone our skills and become better hunters
If you are new to spearfishing and would like to learn more then visit our getting started page here. You can also check out our book 99 Tips to get better at Spearfishing here
The spearfishing float line setup, it’s safe, simple and effective. Float and flag, float line, speed spike and speargun.
Spearfishing Beginner Set Up
The spearfishing rig line setup has been around for a long time and has always been most spearo’s go to set up. It’s simple, practical and safe however, in recent times the popularity of the rig line setup has wavered for the increasingly popular reel gun. Despite the reel gun resurgence the rig line setup is the best option for the beginner and is still used by expert spearfishermen every day. It is also mandatory in many competitions. This article will look at the setup and how it’s used.
First of all let’s look at the components of the rig line set up. Generally there is a float and flag, rig line, speed spike, and gun. Simple!
Spearfishing float and flag. This float is hard plastic with alpha flag and lead keel. Notice the shark clip and float line with keeper knot for holding strung fish.
This setup consists of the float or buoy with the blue and white dove tailed alpha flag or the diver down flag, a red flag with a white horizontal stripe. The float will have a shark or tuna clip in which the rig line is attached to. The float will be weighted or keeled so that ir rights itself in the swell.
The float and flag ensure you’re visible to boats so you don’t get run over. It also ensures you are visible to your boatie so he can find you when he needs to. Trying to find a diver without a flag and float in swell and wind chop can be extremely difficult particularly in the glare of morning or afternoon sun. Should you get lost at sea the float can be put on the end of the spear and waved in the air to signal the boat. The float also provides a means of flotation if you get tired.
A good float will have points where you can attach other objects like flares, water, a whistle, and reflectors. It should be able to be towed behind the boat without diving under the surface. Floats can either be hard or inflatable but for rockhopping I recommend a small hard float that won’t puncture.
Next is the rig line, 15m-30m of floating rope. This rope needs to float so that it returns to the surface after each dive reducing entaglements with the bottom. The rig line will have a loop spliced on each end. One end attaches to the float while the other is attached to the speed spike.
As with everything these days there is every option under the sun from hardware bought rope to state of the art dyneema cored floating tube. The main thing to remember is that it needs to float, not tangle, and be strong enough to land your fish. I personally use a 15m, 20m and 30m length. All three are different types of rope but all float and are all relatively tangle free. All have loops spliced on each end. I find these three lengths allow me to cover all my diving applications.
The rigline attaches the gun to the buoy preventing the gun from being stolen by large fish that run hard or reef species that hold up in caves. If a large game fish is shot the diver releases the gun and swims up the rig line to the float where the diver plays the fish.
The speed spike attached to the spear gun via a shark clip. I recommend the thicker ones as they are less prone to bending.
The speed spike is a metal bar with two rings welded on the ends and is attached to the rig line and the other is clipped to the gun. The speed spike is used to string onto the rig line. The speed spike is pushed through the eye socket of the dead fish then fed up the line to the float. I tie a knot near the float so the fish don’t slide back down the line.
This keeps the fish away from the diver attracting shark activity away and keeps the diver’s hands free to hunt.
I won’t go into too much detail about guns however to say the gun is usually a simple single or double rubber rail gun with a closed muzzle and a shark clip attached. It’s length should be matched to the local conditions but usually, for shore diving a 1m – 1.2m gun will do the job.
So that’s the set up. It has very few moving parts and that’s the point. Keeping it simple is the key when starting out and often a diver will have no need to change from this setup. It can be very cheap to purchase this set up and it’s worth checking out second hand websites like gumtree or facebook groups to pick up good second hand equipment.
If you are considering buying new stuff I stand by, buying right and buying once. Below are my recommendations and links to our principal sponsor www.spearfishing.com where you can save $20 on all purchases over $200 when you use the code noobspearo at check out.
Recently on the Noob Spearo podcast we were lucky enough to chat with SE QLD legend Tim McDonald. There wouldn’t be an Australian Spearo that doesn’t know of Tim’s exploits in the South East. It seems that if it’s edible and swims in the ocean Tim has shot it, and probably a big one of it. We asked Tim what his favourite hunting technique was. In fact we ask every guest this question. This question is designed to get some practical in water techniques for new spearo’s to improve their spearfishing. Tim didn’t give us just one tip for one fish but gave us an insight into his spearfishing mindset for establishing fish behaviour and how best to target them.
When I listened back to the recording there was so many great quotes that I wrote a few down. The following is a series of quotes taken from Tim’s interview that I feel give a good insight into Tim’s mindset when it comes to spearfishing and how he approaches hunting fish.
1. “I think that what makes a great spearfisherman is learning what hunting technique works for what fish”
2. “I probably put more thought into hunting fish and finding fish than most spearos.”
3. “I’ve got a photographic memory when it comes to spearfishing spots. I could draw you a detailed map of every spot I dive but I also remember what works for certain species and that’s probably what’s helped me hunt some of the fish that don’t often get shot in the area.”
4. “You know what, that worked in this spot and that worked in that spot, Wow I’m going to try that again over here.”
5. “I am the worst person for technical names. I don’t call it aspetto because I don’t necessarily know what aspetto means. I’m guessing that means lying on the bottom. One of the big ones is just lying on the bottom, being there for a long time and lying in the right spot.”
6. “We dive all day. Being turned on and focused thinking about it all day is what works.”
7. “Having the mental strength to hunt really dirty water is something that is key to making a really good spearfisherman.”
8. “If you asked my wife she’d probably tell you I spend too much time thinking about spearfishing.”
9. “That’s most guy’s biggest challenge, they want to shoot it so bad and they can’t hide that. They start waving their gun around, they don’t get their gun in the right position early enough, they don’t keep their eyes down for those brief moments when he’s coming head on. Just those little things make a huge difference.”
10. “My parting tip for guys is to learn how to hunt. If you can learn how to hunt you’ll be a great spearo. For some of them (species) that’s hunting them from the boat and some it’s hunting them in the water.”
Clearly it’s the experimental mindset that Tim has applied to his spearfishing that has helped him to become so proficient. He observes and adapts. He is always thinking about the species and what makes it tick and how he can out smart it. Tim continually learns and adapts to what he observes in the water.
He experiments with new approaches right down to the noise his gloves make underwater. He keeps a record of what he observes. It’s mental a record but it works for him.
I would just like to say thanks to Tim for chatting with us and sharing his wisdom. You can listen to the full interview here.I highly recommend it as it’s jam packed with spearfishing gold from one of Australia’s best.
The Great Debate on Dock of Death/Death Pile Pictures
Huge discussion on the phenomena on Social Media of pictures and videos with huge piles of dead fish. Often there are reasons for these piles of fish like providing for your family or community or it could be your source of income, or it might even be the result of a long day or weekend full of hard work spearing with your mates. Whatever the reason, often times on social media the context of a post can so easily be lost, so a proud picture of a long day of hard work trying to feed your family can turn into a what looks like a senseless killing spree. Other times these pictures are taken on purpose to show the sheer volume of fish that they caught. Is this right or wrong? Should pictures of Death Piles be posted? Yes? No? Why or why not?
Bit of a different episode today but join us as we dive into this with Shrek and Simon Trippe as they chat about the so called Death Pile/Dock of Death Phenomenon. Full of interviews with spearos from around the world, this is definitely some food for thought, whichever side you’re on!
We hope you enjoy and make sure that you leave us your thoughts and comments!
Mad chat with Eric Anderson focusing on important spearfishing issues in Central California and further afield. Urchin Barrens feature as well as the benefits of having a long term buddy, Great White Sharks, tourniquets, central California diving and species, sketchy shore dives and kelp forests and more. This one was a long time coming and it was an honour to finally have a long chat with Eric. Enjoy!
04:00 Eric Anderson Introduction and Background 07:00 Sheep Head Fish Facts 09:00 Abalone | The Gateway Drug to the Spearfishing World 12:45 Urchin Barren Discussion
What is an Urchin Barren?
How does an abundance of Sea Urchins effect kelp?
What factors have been identified as potential causes? warming ocean climate, sea urchin abundance triggers overgrazing, decrease in predation (bony reef fish that predate on them, Lobster numbers,
Where does this phenomena occur? NE Pacific in the 1960–1970s, Norwegian coast in the 1970s, NW Atlantic in the 1970–1980s , and Tasmania in the 2000s
What are the wider implications for the areas affected?
23:50 Aiden Brown triggered a story about filleting fish on the boat 26:15 How Eric’s Spearfishing Life Began 30:00 Benefits of having a Longterm Spearfishing Buddy 38:40 Tourniquets and Sharks | Check out this Combat Action Tourniquet
Eric Anderson Combat Action Tourniquet for Spearfishing
44:50 Night Diving and Shit Viz 53:30 Aiden asks about the importance of diving with a float line 58:20 Shore Diving vs Boat Diving 62:30 Shark Shield Discussion 67:00 Scary Moment | Lessons Learned 69:30 Old Man Blue Spearfishing Equipment 77:00 Funniest Moment out spearing 81:00 Spearo Q&A
YOUR BURNING FREEDIVING AND EQUALIZING QUESTIONS ANSWERED BY ADAM STERN
This episode is a live call with Patron listeners and whole bunch of questions from the Noob Spearo Community on Facebook and @noobspearo on Instagram! In this episode we cover breath-hold and depth training questions, how to choose a freediving instructor, deep spearfishing (avoiding squeeze) questions, equalizing questions and more. Lot’s of funny moments including Adam scalding his balls. Enjoy:)
5:00Ben Vittino “I just want to know how he’s so happy and enthusiastic all the time. Love his energy!”
Isaac “I have a question but first I need to know, Do you ever feel down? When you do, what do you do to get back Adam 187% Stern?”
Dale Bartush “I’d also like to know what he thinks about in free fall. Not what he tells people to do lop but what he actually thinks and feels.”
Isaac “If you put a month into training your equalization and Eustachian Tubes, how long will that adaptation last?”
49:55 DEEPER FREEDIVE SPEARFISHING
Kurt Raymond “How do you equalise when you go past that 30+meter mark? I recently dived to 30mtrs on a course and I felt like I had to equalise slightly differently once I hit around the 25mtr mark. I’ve heard of having to bring air back into your mouth. I wasn’t down there for long enough to work out what was going on but I was still able to equalise, just slightly differently to normal. Is there dry training you can do for this technique?”
Joe Pedro “Can you share your wisdom on chin tuck dive & what injuries can be caused by looking (neck extended) out in front of you; typical Spearfishing form compared to proper diver form..the little things that cause nightmares due to lack of “under pressure” knowledge basically.”
Mackenzie Logan “I have a Similar question to Joe Pedro. Once you start going over 30m-40m how long does it take your body to acclimatize to the new depths? If you’ve done all your stretches and relaxing on the top perfectly, what are some of the little things like neck movements that we should be careful of and how long/how many dives to depth until you can start to move your head a little more comfortably?”
To elaborate on this: I think there will be 2 answers depending on whether we are spearfishers vs freedivers..
If you are spearfishing and it is either your first time diving to these depths or you only go diving once a month or so how will this affect your “training adaptations” of diving to that depth? Will you lose them each time you go out again to dive?
If you’re freediving and training frequently will you be able to improve and keep your training adaptations. I think in your last interview he said he could come back after a month or so of not training and pretty much start again from where he had been diving to before?
Thomas Ripard “I’d also like to ask about deeper diving. Once you start to get more comfortable with getting to 30m(ish), is there anything in particular one needs to do to prepare yourself to get past the 30m mark? Also anything safety related one should be aware of as you get past 30m? Cheers! Discovering the noobspearo podcast was the best thing that happened to me in 2020, keep em coming
66:00 OTHER QUESTIONS
Rob James “When is Adam having an underwater UFC rematch with Adam
Craig McNiven “What are the hurdles of running a free diving business, cashflow, cancellations, COVID, marketing and customer retention. Is it like a dream to do what you love for an income every day? Could you get the business to a point where it could be run without you?”
Jason Harris “Not strictly diet related.. but does Adam have any food items he avoids when leading up to a dive day to keep the sinus systems clean”
Isaac “Can we have the Dairy and Mucus Production Urban Legend Discussion?”
@nicholasmorsecodes “How many wetsuits does he own? 10+ at least! where does he keep them all?”
79:50 WHEN IS ADAM COMING TO MY PART OF THE WORLD?
@scubasteve212 “Will he do a freediving course in Batemans bay in the future 🙌”
@bard_antonsen “First: thank you so much for your podcast! I have learned a lot by listening to most of your episodes. I started freediving 2 years ago. I had to participate in a freediving class since my son was too young to go alone. I was afraid and far away from my comfort zone. I overcome my fears and now I love the water. Question to Adam: I’d love to meet him, but I live in Norway and have a low budget. Will there be any chance to see him in the land of the big halibuts? Our coast is amazing. I’m just saying… An event with Adam in Norway would be epic🤩”
@mansoor_hsd “When he come Lakshadweep (India)?”
83:50 PATRON LISTENER LIVE QUESTIONS
Greg Rothaus “Hi Adam, I’m 62. What’s your advice to older divers with regards to training and spearfishing?”
Greg Rothaus “I am going on a month long freedive training retreat in Dahab, Egypt. How do you recommend I make the most of a trip like this?
Captain Dan Walsh comments of teaching/freediving as a job, Eustashian tube solutions and advice for older divers.
Stu Harwood “I find after a day spearing I am absolutely rooted, do you have any tips for mitigating this? (becoming unrooted)
Duncan Henderson “With equalizing, do you do one grouper call on the way down or multiple grouper calls?”
On Christmas Eve I bought myself a Garmin Descent Mk2 and have been playing with it a little. The various apps you can load and the information it collects are impressive. GPS coordinates, entry and exit points for dives, boat tracks etc. as well as giving you a direct heading to your destination while boating is interesting. No spot is safe now – jump in the water and fire up the Apnea Hunt app and it logs your entry point and info on dives such as heart rate, depth, temp etc. throughout the session. It is an expensive piece of kit though!
Mokohinau Islands aka the Mokes
A couple of weeks ago Rob, Moss and I headed out to the Mokohinau Islands in Robs boat. The Mokes are about 30 NM out and are known for good fish life. We launched earliesh (although not as early as intended … thanks to yours truly) and were just under half way out when we spotted a big splash just to the west of us. The splash then appeared again and we saw a flash of white underside and large gills – it was a manta ray feeding on the surface. Manta rays are not hugely common in New Zealand waters and none of us had seen a manta in NZ before so we quickly geared up while keeping an eye on the ray from a distance. I jumped in and swam toward the ray which then proceeded to come to me and check me out – swimming with a manta ray has been on my bucket list for a while! Moss and Rob also jumped in and we took turns boating. The day on the water was starting well!
As we approached the Mokes we saw a couple of pods of dolphins too. Moss was first in the water and on his first dive stoned a kingfish while I was still gearing up so we dropped that into the chillibin. I couldn’t hit a barn door and managed to stuff up a reasonable snapper while Moss and Rob came back with some good fish.
Next was jumping in on one of the workups that were moving around. The workups were Trevally and Kahawai with some Koheru mixed in. Kingfish were hunting them from below and I saw a couple of small Kingfish pretending they were Kahawai and schooling in with the Trevs.
We dived a couple of other spots and I was still struggling to hit a barn door so I got my eye in on a Trevally then we dropped in at a spot Rob had sold as “almost guaranteed Kingfish”. He was not wrong … I had just got in the water, loaded my gun then turned on “Apnea Hunt” on the new watch when I saw a reasonable Kingfish below me so it was a quick duck dive and shot. Given my poor record of not being able to hit a barn door I was unsure of shot placement so when Rob swam back and asked if I wanted him to put a second shot into the fish I agreed.
Looking back at the info on the Garmin later I can see that I barely got to 4m on that dive – I have included a screenshot of some of the data: depth, time and heartrate. The very first dip in that graph was the Kngfish dive.
After a bit more time in the water we decided to head back. We hoped we might see the manta rays on the way back too so Moss stayed in his togs. We were not disappointed as we spotted another, bigger manta ray in roughly the same place as the ones spotted on the way out. Rob and Moss jumped in while I boated for them (I had spent more time with the manta in the morning). I had turned on the “Boat” app on the watch and set the destination as the boat ramp at Omaha so it tracked our journey, speed etc. It would be easy to use it to give you a direct course to a destination.
More sea life …
Not long after the others were back in the boat and dry Rob and I spotted a spout ahead … We had a Brydes Whale swimming across our path. Brydes whales are resident in the Hauraki Gulf but this was only the second time I had seen one – It was quite a day for large sea life (Rob and Moss also had Bronze Whalers check them out).
I have included a couple of screenshots of the boat track and you can see the top kink in the track where we saw the manta ray and a another deviation in the track where we saw the Brydes Whale (NZ has strict regulations about approaching marine mammals).
I’ve just realised that day was quite a Noob Spearo Podcast day. We ran into Blair Herbert at the ramp on the way in. Rob (NSP:091), Moss (NSP:060) and Blair (NSP:120 -122, 127) have all been guests on the podcast (links to each interview below;).
Mick is a long time member of the Brisbane Underwater Adventurers Club, AUFQ Queensland records keeper and is absolutely mad about fish casting! His house contains over 350 cast and mounted fish that take up most of his wall space. He truly is a legend that has stood the test of time, having made several record catches himself, his knowledge of fish is astounding (listen to the interview to get a taste) and his dedication to serving spearfishing as a sport is truly noteworthy. He is not out and about on social media so this episode is a great way to get some of the knowledge and insight into the mind of this decades long underwater enthusiast! Enjoy this episode!
The first interview of 2021 had to be awesome so I got Josh James Kiwi Bushman on the show! He has a frothing following on YouTube where they create motivating and inspiring short films with a hunting and fishing and family flavor. All of the videos feature Josh’s friends and family and the abundant wild food that surrounds them in New Zealand. If you are into Catch and cook, bushcraft, hunting, gathering, spearfishing, fishing, archery, and New Zealand culture, you will love his channel (link here). He’s a self professed good vibes and positive vibrations kind of guy. Enjoy this episode!