Hooked on drone fishing? Step right this way…

So, we’ve heard about this whole drone fishing thing before. And while we’ve never done it, we thought it might be fun to introduce this unusual but effective hobby/sport to others.

We used to really enjoy fishing. But we’ve traditionally fished from a boat on a freshwater lake. That’s pretty simple – just cast where you want the hook to drop or move the boat to a different area. But it’s a little different when you’re trying to fish from the shoreline of the ocean or a really huge lake. Then, it’s difficult (and usually impossible) to cast out into deeper water beyond the breaking waves.

But that’s where the fish are. And if you want to catch them, that’s where you need to go.

Drone fishing

So here’s how it works. You get everything ready to go: hook, line and sinker. Then you attach the line to your drone. But you don’t simply tie it on, you generally connect it to a servo-activated device that will drop your line when you tell it to.

Some prefer completely waterproof drones designed for this purpose, such as the Swellpro Splash 3:

A Swellpro drone – fully waterproof

Yes, you really can land that thing in the water. But you actually don’t need to for drone fishing. You simply get your line attached, and then fly your drone out beyond the breakers. Then you release your hook in those deeper waters and start fishing.

Does it work?

Yes, it does. And you don’t need to have a waterproof drone. We’ve seen examples of people fishing using their Phantoms, Mavic 2 Pros, etc. along with an add-on release mechanism. A sub-250 gram drone isn’t going to have the strength to carry a signifiant payload, along with all that line (which exerts a greater force on the drone if there’s wind).

A company called Gannet makes release mechanisms for a whole variety of drones. This image comes from the dronefishing website.

No shortage of drone options…

One of the purpose-built drones made made for this endeavour is called the Gannet Pro Drone. In fact, Gannet makes several drones for the fishing enthusiast:

The Pro + is $2299 and the Gannet Pro is $1699 (both on sale now)

Can we see it in action?

Sure thing:

But can you catch anything with it? You bet. Check out this happy camper (along with the two who are less enthused to be there):

Now *that’s* a fish. Well, two of them.

“I want to learn more…”

If you said that, you’re in luck. We received an email with a fair bit of information from Gannet. And we’d be remiss if we didn’t let you hear some of things they have to say:

The small South African company that started out in 2016 making payload release systems for just about all DJI drones and many others has completed the design and tooling setup to mass produce their own Waterproof fishing and SAR drone range, starting with the mid sized Gannet Pro swinging 13” props and the bigger Pro+ swinging 15” props. These two models can take payloads of 4,5lbs and 7,7lbs respectively with ample reserve power to lift over 13lbs. Most all of the Gannet drones are custom made, even the motors are custom made with stainless steel bearings and shafts and special lubrication passages to lubricate both bearings with eases without needing any disassembly. Final product shipping started in December 2020 for the smaller Pro and the Pro+ Started to ship in March 2021 fulfilling all the preorders along with all the new orders that flooded in since they first started to ship. There is now Gannets on every continent and the 3rd production run is under way to meet the growing demand.

Cool. You can find out more at www.dronefishing.com or, if you’re in the USA, at www.GannetDronesUSA.com. You’ll also find a community on FaceBook at  www.facebook.com/dronefishingSA.

Good luck!

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