bug technique

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Posted by Gregg M on October 21, 2005 at 19:41:27:

Here is the technique.

1. Get a light cannon. That is pure bunk about the light cannon scaring bugs. All lights scare bugs. They learn bugs mean divers. Also, a light cannon lets you see considerably farther than a regular light, but remember, bugs blend in well, especially in waving bull kelp or eel grass. I have been less than a foot from two at a time and lost them.

2. Wear a light on your mask. You need two hands to grab a bigger bug, and two hands to grab any legal bug too. You won't be holding your primary, and the smaller light on your mask will allow you to see the bug when you let the primary drop for the grab. Don't look directly at the bug, but offset the light. The bug will think you missed him and he will/may stay frozen.

Two hand grabs extend your coverage, so if the bug shifts a bit, which he might, you have a better chance of grabbing him. Whatever you do, don't swat them. The guy who said that was trying to hurt your chances to leave him bugs. Also, I used to use Kevlor gloves, but they make your hand motion too slow from too much resistance. They also send out a larger presure wave, which the bug picks up. Go the thinnest glove you can stand, and by stand I mean your hands will get pretty messed up from spines as the lobster fights. Use two hands, and do a combo pin grab. Approach once, arms extended 3/4 way, and come in smooth but fast and pin that bug hard.

3. Dive at night if possible, and remember the bugs will be out and about, under bull kelp fronds is a favorite hang out for them.

4. Work all depths at least once, sometimes the bugs will be in one particular strata, as in a depth range of +/- 5 feet.

5. Be the first off the boat. The bugs will be running around, and the first guy in can usually pick off a large amount first.

6. Grab only big bugs, ones that feel like a coke can. If they aren't that big you will be wasting your time.

7. If you get them buy a horn they are yours, even if the grab is tenuous. Just use that grab, even if it's only by a finger, to shake them radically. That shaking will usually make them unlock their foothold as they try to wedge into a crack.

8. Look closely for that antenna. It may be all you see, even in a wide open kelp field. They can see and feel you, and believe me, they can disappear under almost any cover.

9. Sweep your light in big arcs to increase your scan at night, don't get tunnel vision. The light make spook one making it move, and you will see that reflection and the movement better than if they are hiding and being still.

10. Go with a good captain who wants you to catch bugs, not a guy who wants you to "earn" you catch by diving marginal spots. If it's a social dive, catering to PETA members with cameras or heavy drinkers who want to dive easy spots to nurse a hangover stay home and do the neighbors wife or something more productive.

11. Get a big tank. A steel 95 is the smallest. Do not go high pressure, they can't fill them on the boat and than I will have to hear you whine how you got a short fill the whole trip. By the luxor 132, its a bomb, but that extra 25% time under water means all the differance unless your a big fat italian who couldn't grab his butt with both hands. Right Artie and Mikie?

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