7 Drone Fishing Tips for Beginners + Buyer’s Guide

Drone fishing is the latest trending type of angling and with these drone fishing tips you will get a better idea about how to get started.

In this article we will go through how to select your drone, from battery life to range and the lure release mechanism, some tactics and techniques, maintenance, and advice to help you catch your first fish from a drone released bait.

If you have any experience with drone fishing then we would love to hear your advice and wisdom in the comments below to share with everyone else.

Drone fishing gives you a magic opportunity to catch big game fish from shore even tuna, tarpon, or mackerel.

Let's go!

What is Drone Fishing?

Drone fishing is attaching a lure or bait to a release mechanism on a small drone and flying it significantly further into the water than you could possibly achieve by casting a spinning rod.

Drone fishing is particularly useful when you want to get your bait further away from shore. This could be due to a very shallow water, large surf breaks, deep distance holes, or schools of fish offshore.

FishingFather has a great article showing how to use Google Maps to select better fishing spots. Using a drone takes this to the next level.

It allows you to use your favorite inshore saltwater spinning rod but target fish species that don't come in close to shore.

Drone Selection

There are a wide variety of drones available for fishing - and you can easily pick a very chap drone and add a release mechanism to it and a lot of spare batteries. But for this exercise we are going to assume that you want a fishing drone that will fulfill all the criteria you need.

We will go through the key factors that you should consider before making your purchase including the battery life, range, weight rating, wind rating, release mechanism, and waterproof rating.

Battery Life

Most drone batteries only last for 30 minutes. Given the high winds you often find on beaches and the additional weight of line and bait it will be carrying, this brings it down to around 20 minutes.

We generally assume each cast to be around 10 minutes (5 minutes out and 5 minutes back). So a normal drone will only give you a maximum of 2 casts. 

Give that we always recommended going for a much longer lasting battery or keeping spare batteries in your tackle bag. You can also get a portable battery charger if you have access to power.

Range

The range of your drone is determined by three factors - the battery life, the speed, and the transmission signal.

The transmission signal is the distance that you can still send direction to your drone from your controller. The worst case scenario is seeing your drone flying off into the distance without any ability to bring it back to land. This is the absolute maximum distance that you should ever attempt.

The other piece of the puzzle is the battery. If your battery only lasts 20 minutes (especially when loaded up with a few hundred feet of line), then your maximum distance is how far your drone can travel in 10 minutes and then return to land. This will also be impacted by the wind.

I would suggest using your transmission frequency is the maximum range and then determining the battery range yourself with some experimentation.

Release Mechanism

There are two popular release mechanisms - electronic and mechanical.

Electronic

An electronic release gives you the longest range and can either be linked in with your drone controller or come with a separate release button. This is as simple as it sounds - a hook or clamp that can be opened up at the press of a button.

The higher end fishing drones will come with their own electronic release built in.

Mechanical

A mechanical release is more like a hook or clamp with a separate line that you open by pulling the line. This has a lower range but is generally lower cost. I would only recommend a mechanical release if you are on a budget and don't want to get the really long ranges.

Waterproof

The waterproof rating of your drone might be the only thing to protect it if it falls into the ocean - and this does happen from time to time, particularly as you are learning.

We strongly recommend looking for a high waterproof rating of a fishing drone.

You will also want your drone to float. This means that if you do crash into the water then you can swim out and retrieve it (or even reel it in with your line if it is still attached).

Camera

A camera is a useful addition to your fishing drone but it is not a requirement. It is nice to see the area where you are dropping your bait to see if there is a slightly better location. You can often see things from a drone that you cannot see from land - bait fish balls, structure, changes in water color or depth.

If you intend to use your drone for other recreational uses rather than pure fishing then certainly consider getting a camera.

Recommended Drone for Fishing

While there are plenty of cheap drones that you can add a release mechanism and use for fishing, to get the battery life, range, and waterproof rating you may have to spend some money. If you intend to go drone fishing regularly and for extended periods of time then we recommend this:

Walmeck Waterproof Fishing Drone with Camera 1080P GPS Positioning 850m 5G WiFi Transmission 1.5kg...
  • Functions: Hovering, one key take-off/landing, lost/low battery/one button return, GPS accurate positioning, real-time video surveillance, throwing bait to fish, LED light.
  • A professional high standard aircraft combines stable hovering in the sky and accurate throwing bait to fish.
  • MADE OF HIGH QUALITY MATERIAL: Corrosion-resistant materials are used to avoid the rain and seawater corrosion.

Drone Fishing Video

It can be difficult to get a good appreciation of drone fishing through words alone, so please have a watch of this video. This shows just how easy it can be to set up your drone, cast your bait, and start catching fish. This video comes out of New Zealand but the concepts apply anywhere including the United States.

Drone Fishing Tactics

Drone fishing follows most of your normal local fishing strategies, but it combines fishing from the shore with targeting fish species that you can normally only catch from a boat. For this reason it is almost better to consider that you are fishing out to sea.

The selection of your bait and rig is just as important as any other form of angling. 

Please read through our drone fishing tactics below:

  • Check your local laws and regulations around drone use - some areas particularly around airfields or populated areas do not appreciated drones flying around.
  • Check the weather conditions - make sure the wind does not exceed your drone's wind rating. Also take into account high wind will use up more of your drone's battery life.
  • Make sure you get yourself a quality beach rod holder so that you don't have to worry about your rod while you are focused on controlling your drone.
  • Don't exceed the carrying capacity of your drone - this can include several hundred feet of line.
  • If you have a heavy sinker on your rig then this can cause your drone to pendulum around. Consider hooking your sinker as close to your drone as possible so it doesn't swing in the wind.

Drone Maintenance

Making sure your drone lasts for years to come is the best way to get good value for money - and that means good maintenance.

We have put together some simple to follow tips for maintaining your drone. It really depends on the conditions that you will be using your drone. The most common locations are off the beach which means salt and sand.

Keeping your drone clean from salt and sand in between uses is an easy way to get longer life from it.

Have a read through our drone maintenance tips:

  • Replace any damaged propellers prior to use - it is much cheaper to replace a propeller than an entire drone.
  • Store your drone battery in a dry, cool environment or a fire proof pouch.
  • Clean your drone thoroughly with fresh water after use to remove any salt water or sand.

Top 10 Fishing Drones [This Month]

Bestseller No. 1
O'woda Mavic 2 Payload Drone Airdropper Clip Delivery Transport Device Wedding Drone Fishing Bait...
  • ♥Easy to Control - One-Click operation with the remote, the remote range of delivery device is the same as the range of the drone remote. It allows you to drop anything (didn’t exceed the max load...
  • ♥Minimalist Design - Light weight, convenient size, easy-installation, no need to redesign your drone. With built-in battery, can continually open and close for 500+ times on one charge.
  • ♥Impressiveness Activities - for birthday, party, marriage proposal, wedding, family reunion, fun day at the beach, pool party, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year and others. Create...
Bestseller No. 2
CHASING Dory Underwater Drone - 1080p Full HD Underwater Drone with Camera for Real Time Viewing,...
  • Excellent Underwater Photography; DORY can dive up to 49ft and has an HD camera for real-time observation and shooting photos and videos; DORY's 1080p f/1;6 camera combined with two 250-lumen...
  • Portable for Travel; As the world's smallest, smartest and most affordable underwater drone, palm sized DORY is just 9;7 x 7;4 x 3;6", weighs less than 2;5 lb; It has a 4800 mAh battery life of...
  • Explore the Sea Like a game; DORY is really easy to use; Plug, plunge and play; With the Chasing DORY app, your phone can remotely control the underwater drone to dive, forward and backward, move up...
Bestseller No. 3
Professional Release and Drop device for DJI Phantom 4 all models, for Drone Fishing, Bait Release,...
  • DRONE FISHING - Go on a thrilling Drone Fishing adventure! Your drone will pull your fishing line with lure/bait and hooks into the ocean and drop them to the water upon your command. Bait release for...
  • FUN ACTIVITIES - for Birthday, Party, Marriage Proposal, Wedding, Family Reunion, Fun day at the Beach, Pool Party, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year and others. Create Memorable Moments...
  • SEARCH and RESCUE - Use your drone in Search and Rescue missions. Carry, deliver and drop Supplies, First Aid, Medicine, Communication and Survival equipment, mobile phones and water to those in need....
Bestseller No. 4
PeleusTech Release and Drop Device for DJI Mavic PRO for Drone Fishing, Bait Release, Payload...
31 Reviews
PeleusTech Release and Drop Device for DJI Mavic PRO for Drone Fishing, Bait Release, Payload...
  • For DJI Mavic Pro drone
  • Can be delivered remotely for advertising, fishing lures, gifts, meals, wedding rings, etc.
  • USB charging, quick release, one-touch control of DJI remote control
Bestseller No. 5
Eyoyo Portable Underwater Fishing Camera Fixed on Rod Underwater Video Fish Finder 4.3 inch Monitor...
  • 【4.3" Video Underwater Fish Finder】: IP68 Waterproof lens and 4.3 inch LCD display constitute the visual system -- underwater fishing camera, so that you can clearly see the fish biting bait. More...
  • 【Adjustable 8 infrared LED lights】: 1000 TVL Pixel Lens, 110° view angle with 8 Infrared LEDs for a clear display in low light conditions. The intensity of the infrared LEDs can be adjusted by...
  • 【8500mAh Battery for 8H Working Time 】: This Eyoyo fishing camera is specially built-in a 8500mAh rechargeable battery, which is much larger than that of 4000mAh. Therefore, the using time can...
ON SALE $21.00 OFFBestseller No. 6
Holy Stone 2K GPS FPV RC Drone HS100 with HD Camera Live Video and GPS Return Home, Large Quadcopter...
  • The Largest & Wind-Resistant: Large body and powerful motors keep drone hovering stably in wind. Headless Mode, Altitude Hold and One Key Takeoff and Landing for easier operation. Perfect for...
  • 2K Optimized 120° FOV FPV 5GHz Wi-Fi Camera: 90° Adjustable angle, captures high-quality video and aerial photos. You can enjoy the Real-Time Viewing right from your remote control. Ideal selfie...
  • Easy to Assemble & Carry: The foldable propellers are pre-assembled. Just insert camera, landing gears and battery. Then, get it take off. Besides, the foldable propellers makes it easy to keep the...
Bestseller No. 7
DJI Mavic Air 2 - Drone Quadcopter UAV with 48MP Camera 4K Video 8K Hyperlapse 1/2" CMOS Sensor...
  • 【UP YOUR GAME】: The Mavic Air 2 camera drone takes power and portability to the next level. It combines a powerful camera with intelligent shooting modes for stunning results. Push your...
  • 【NEXT-LEVEL CONTENT】: Capture impressive 48MP photos with a 1/2-inch CMOS sensor while the 3-axis gimbal provides 4K/60fps video. The secret to incredible HDR video is a high-performance Quad...
  • 【IMPROVED FLIGHT】: An impressive flight time of up to 34 minutes allows you to pull off epic, fast-paced shots. Obstacle sensing in three directions makes it extra convenient for beginners and...
Bestseller No. 8
Potensic T25 GPS Drone, FPV RC Drone with Camera 1080P HD WiFi Live Video, Auto Return Home,...
  • [Convenient and Easy]: With a Aluminum Silver Carry Case, you could bring it outdoor conveniently. Headless Mode, Altitude Mode and One Key to Take-off / Land function make easier access to kids or...
  • [Wider Vision & Fluent Transmission]: 1080P HD camera with 120° FOV and 75° adjustable wide angle helps to capture clearly photos and more stable videos. WiFi camera provide you faster but clearer...
  • [Safer & More Stable Flight]: Equipped with Dual GPS, drone will stand still in the wind and automatic return home when it is with low power or weak signal or lost.
Bestseller No. 9
Swellpro Splash Drone 3 Plus Waterproof Drone with Payload Release (to Drop Fishing Bait or Life...
  • Tough & Waterproof The SplashDrone 3+ fuselage is made from durable 3mm reinforced ABS to ensure a perfect waterproof seal. Each drone undergoes at least two pressure tests during production for 100%...
  • Powerful Propulsion System The new S3 flight controller, integrated with new sensors and a powerful propulsion system, allows for greater sensitivity and more accuracy than ever. This means you can...
  • S3 Flight Controller The S3 constantly checks for errors and offers redundancy to improve flight stability. The dual-mode GPS locks onto up to 24 satellites from the GPS and GLONASS systems for...
ON SALE $10.00 OFFBestseller No. 10

Conclusion

That brings us to the end of our drone fishing tip article. I hope that you have gained a better understanding on the important criteria when looking for a drone and the best tactics to use it. There are also some other guides online if you want more information.

Drone fishing is a relatively new form of angling and people are still trying to figure out the best strategies and techniques for catching more fish with them. If you are an experienced drone fisherman than we would love to hear your own advice that we can pass on to our readers in the comments below. We would love to share your wisdom with your audience.

Happy drone fishing!

Russ Egan
 

Russ is an avid angler. He has fished all over the world, primarily for Saltwater game fish but also for local prize fish. Russ writes reviews for all of his fishing gear to help others achieve their own fishing goals. His favorite reel is a Shimano Tyrnos for an overhead reel or a Shimano Curado for a baitcaster. His dream is to catch a Black Marlin.

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