Drones are incredibly useful for many things – photography, exploration, delivery, wildlife observation, and the list is endless. They’ve even proved to be handy in areas such as the delivery of small goods as well as military uses. So it’s no surprise that in recent years, people have discovered the use of drones for fishing too.
If you love fishing and are an experienced angler, then drone fishing is definitely something you must try. But you can’t expect to just grab a drone and get started right away.
A drone for fishing is an exciting and efficient method of getting better catches, but it also has many complications and considerations that you need to be aware of. And then there’s the issue of knowing which drones are best for fishing in the first place.
So we’ll cover all those topics in detail in today’s guide, help you pick a suitable fishing drone, and inform you about the essential things to consider for drone fishing.
What Is Drone Fishing And Why Is It Becoming Popular?
Even if you’ve been fishing for many years, it’s okay if you have never heard of drone fishing because it’s a relatively new concept. There’s no clear record of when drone fishing started.
As people were and still are experimenting with drones and the different innovative ways to use them, it’s most likely how drone fishing became a thing. But in the past few years, it’s become quite a trend and has generated quite a buzz in the fishing community. So for those who are clueless about it, what exactly is drone fishing?
Well, in simple words, drone fishing is where you use a drone to carry your bait and drop it into the water. It sounds simple, but why use a drone when you can just throw the bait without one like people have been doing for ages? There’s not one, but many reasons for using drones is better. Here are some of the main benefits of drones for fishing:
- You can cast your bait to a farther distance and into deeper waters, allowing you to catch more variety of fish. People have used drones to drop baits from 350 to 370 meters (1100 to 1200 ft.).
- With a drone, you can control where you drop the bait, giving you greater control over the fishing location.
- It’s perfect for offshore fishing – you stay at the shore and use drones to cast the bait to far-off locations.
- When using a drone for fishing, you can access certain fishing areas without riding there on your boat.
- Drones come with cameras to record the fishing process, which is not just fun but also useful to review later. The video footage can be used to come up to study the fishing area and get come up with better ideas to improve things. And as an added benefit, you can capture some pretty cool pictures too!
- And lastly, it just makes the fishing experience a lot more fun and exciting.
Now that you know why drone fishing is growing popular and what its benefits are, you’d probably want to try drone fishing yourself. Of course, you won’t become an expert by the time you reach the end of this post, but we’re going to give you all the necessary info to start you off on a strong foot.
How Does Drone Fishing Work?
The primary purpose of the drone in fishing is to carry and drop the bait. Based on the type and design of the drone being used, you’ll have to modify it to cling the bait to it.
Drone dropping/release mechanisms already exist in the market, so you can just get one of those. These are small gadgets you can fit at the bottom of the drone that hold on to and release objects, controlled with a button.
But if you’re more of a DIY person and don’t want to spend on release mechanisms, there are ways to make one yourself. The simplest option for beginners is to attach some sort of hook or clip to the bottom of the drone to cling the line carrying the bait. To drop the line, you need to turn the drone around or slightly tilt it downwards. Just make sure that the clip doesn’t have too much of an upward angle because that will make it challenging to drop the bait.
So once your drone is equipped with the necessary release system, whether it’s readymade or handmade, fly the drone over to the location where you want to drop the bait and release the line. Then fly your drone back, and the other half of the job is now up to your fishing reel. It doesn’t sound all too complicated, but it’s easier said than done. However, you will likely get the hang of it after a few tries.
Things to Consider When Buying a Drone for Fishing
The type of drone you use for fishing is not something you can decide casually. Luckily, drone fishing has become popular enough for special fishing drones to be available in the market. Even then, there are several things you need to consider before buying a fishing drone, such as:
Distance and Range
Your number one priority should be the distance and signal range of the drone. The biggest advantage of drone fishing is that you can cast the bait farther, so you need to consider how far the drone can fly without losing signal and transmission.
Needless to say, it’s essential to check the battery life of the drone. The last thing you want is the battery dying when your drone is flying above the water. Drones usually have a battery life of 15 to 30 minutes, but fishing is unpredictable and takes time, so you might need to get some extra batteries too.
You need to consider the extra weight your drone can carry since you’ll be attaching extra equipment to it. Another important thing is to account for the force of wind when the drone is dragging the reel line.
While this is an optional feature, it’s good to invest in a waterproof drone in the event that it falls to the water. It may cost you more money, but it prevents you from losing the drone in case of any mishaps, so it’s a worthy investment.
A good camera is a must-have for a fishing drone because you’ll entirely be relying on the video footage to navigate your drone to farther areas.
Drones with a ‘fly back home’ feature are perfect for fishing. With this feature, the drone automatically flies back to the location it started from, so you don’t need to manually fly it all the way back to you after dropping the bait.
Best Drone for Fishing to Buy Online
Now let’s take a look at some of the best fishing drones available online. We’ve reviewed some tried and tested fishing drones to make your search easier.
Low Budget Pick Under $500
If you want a simple low budget drone for fishing, then DJI Mavic Mini is a perfect choice. Keep in mind that when you go for a lower price, you lose out on better features and performance. But if you want to try out drone fishing as a hobby and keep things simple, the Mavic Mini will get the job done.
It has a flight time of a maximum of 30 minutes and a maximum speed of 29 mph. The drone itself is lightweight so that it can carry a payload of 50 to 80 grams; anything above that is risky. It has a signal range of up to 4 km, which is quite good, and the camera quality isn’t outstanding but still good enough for scouting fishing areas.
Best Pick Under $1000
For those willing to invest up to $1000 for a fishing drone, Mavic Pro is one of the best options available. It has a transmission range of up to 7 km, achieving speeds of up to 40mph. The total flight time is capped at 27 minutes.
The camera quality is excellent with 4k resolution, so you can get a good view of things. It’s one reason that it’s perfect for fishing, as you can scout for locations clearly through the video footage. It can safely carry weights from 300 to 400 grams, so that’s definitely a huge plus when you’re using it for fishing.
Best Drone for Fishing Pick, Designed Especially for Fishing
If you’re an experienced angler who’s serious about drone fishing and willing to invest in a high
budget drone that’s designed especially for fishing, then there’s no better choice than the Splash Drone 3+.
This is a fully waterproof, tough, and durable drone that is capable of withstanding wind, water, and weather conditions. It’s a drone built to perform best in marine areas and even comes with its own release mechanism for dropping the bait. And it can carry weights up to 1 kg, which is truly impressive.
The flight time of about 20 to 25 minutes and a transmission range of 1km are two things that are not its strong suit. But it has been designed particularly for drone fishing and not for other applications. So from that perspective, the flight time and range are more than enough. It’s a drone that is all about fishing and not covering long distances and taking scenic shots. One thing is sure – the Splash Drone 3+ is a beast when it comes to drone fishing and will last for years.
Drone fishing is a fun and innovative experience that makes things quite exciting. Not to mention all the fantastic benefits of using a drone, most importantly, being able to fish in farther areas and having full control over where you drop the bait. So, if you’re planning to go and get yourself a nice drone and set out to catch some good fish, we hope that this guide will be useful to get you right on track.