AR15.Com Archives
 I need some tips for catching Alligator Gar in a River
sullysauto  [Team Member]
6/30/2009 7:15:09 AM EST
I have caught a few before, but I lose most of them after a small fight. I have used treble hooks and I let them take the bait for awhile before I set the hook.

Thanks for any help.
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ExEagle  [Member]
6/30/2009 7:59:07 AM EST
When i was a kid growing up on the War Eagle river in Arkansas we would tie a red nylon sock to the end of our line and let it float in the current. Something about red attracts them and the get their teeth tangled in the nylon. I promise they cant get off the line once they bite it. We would also bow fish them. Its easier to bow fish if you have a bridge or some type of elevated position. Hope this helps.

Also...you could try snagging them like carp.
53vortec  [Team Member]
6/30/2009 8:04:40 AM EST
.22 Rifle.

Seriously though, our technique back home involved getting a chrome ring (preferred) or flat washer. Then make 30 or 40 loops of monofilament, about 3" long, and toss into river. Gar will snap at the reflective chrome and get their teeth tangled in the loops of line.

It does raise the question, though, what do you want to land one for? I always enjoyed the fight, but find shooting them a lot more enjoyable.
huskerpower1  [Team Member]
7/3/2009 7:30:08 AM EST
We use Fireline and also a 12 steel leader, for the lure we use a three treble Rapala a longer one and cast just in front of the nose, keeping casting they will eventually hit the lure. Make sure you have some pliers and a lot of spare lures. (This only works I guess when they are floating or surfacing alot) Anyway always works for us. Are you really that bored to fish for Gar?
captainpooby  [Team Member]
7/5/2009 11:37:26 AM EST
Man I hate catching those things.
timb3  [Team Member]
7/12/2009 6:30:20 PM EST
Believe it or not, I saw someone use a mop head one time. As others mentioned above, the point was to get it's teeth caught in it.
TripleDAustin  [Member]
7/17/2009 1:38:17 AM EST
There was a recent article on gar fishing in the Wall Street Journal, believe it or not. Here are some links. There is a picture of a real monster.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124630970213770223.html

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124631318638370373.html
Chimborazo  [Member]
7/27/2009 12:13:30 PM EST
What are these hunted for? Are they good eating? Pests?
53vortec  [Team Member]
7/27/2009 12:25:23 PM EST
Originally Posted By Chimborazo:
What are these hunted for? Are they good eating? Pests?


Pests. Rob trotlines, eat gamefish, generally worthless bothersome creature that put up a good fight.
madmedic  [Team Member]
7/27/2009 12:38:13 PM EST
In my PERSONAL experience... the easiest way to catch alligator gar in Florida...is to try NOT to catch alligator gar.
CamoedNinja  [Member]
10/10/2009 6:04:39 PM EST
We use chunks of bream or bluegills with the appropriate size circle hook, small steel leader and power pro braided line.
RickNC  [Member]
10/21/2009 3:36:02 AM EST
Caught a nice big long nose one this summer in a local pond The place is full of them. And I wonder why I can't catch hardly any other fish. I collect skulls and its head now rests in my collection. Caught it on regular hook and line.
cormorantslayer  [Life Member]
4/8/2010 7:02:39 PM EST
Tie a 12" piece of nylon rope to the end of your line and reel it past them kind of fast.

There teeth get caught in the rope.
phlat  [Team Member]
4/23/2010 6:45:33 PM EST
In-Fisherman went with a guide to fish for these. They used a few feet of steel wire for a leader, big hook, cut bait. Dropped it in the water and motored up stream as opposed to casting due to the weight of the whole setup. Caught a monster with it.
HubMcCaan  [Team Member]
4/23/2010 7:08:47 PM EST
When I was growing up some of the guys around Houston use to go catch them with compound bows with the reels on them - always thought that looked like fun.
TomJefferson  [Site Staff]
4/24/2010 6:20:42 AM EST
Steel leader and a stout line.
TNhick  [Member]
5/29/2010 10:53:34 PM EST
Originally Posted By 53vortec:
Originally Posted By Chimborazo:
What are these hunted for? Are they good eating? Pests?


Pests. Rob trotlines, eat gamefish, generally worthless bothersome creature that put up a good fight.


you know those fish live over 70 years and grow over 150 pounds and fight as hard as anything in freshwater?
Not what I would call a pest. Sounds like one hell of a gamefish to me.
Sounds like the kind of fish that once you catch one, you should thank it for all the excitment and let it go so it can get even bigger and you can catch it again!
I'm a avid musky angler here in TN. Folks round here look at muskies as a worthless fish and some kill every one they catch. I dont understand how a bass angler can catch a 4 foot, 30 pound musky on bass gear, and think it such a terable experiance that they feel the need to kill it. What a horrable thing to catch such a awsome apex predater. How can someone like that call themselves a sportsman or outdoorsman?
TN has recently reintroduced gator gar in west TN. They are totally protected at this point. I hope I live long enough to be able to go to the western part of the state and catch 100 pound gater gar.
I'm glad to hear that TX is on the way to start protecting there gator gar. As a avid fisherman, I plan on traveling to TX to fish for these awsome creatures. Hopefully there still be some monsters left by the time I get over there.
Go catch yourself a monster, then let it go. Its good to know theres still monsters out there.
53vortec  [Team Member]
5/29/2010 10:59:21 PM EST
Originally Posted By TNhick:
Originally Posted By 53vortec:
Originally Posted By Chimborazo:
What are these hunted for? Are they good eating? Pests?


Pests. Rob trotlines, eat gamefish, generally worthless bothersome creature that put up a good fight.


you know those fish live over 70 years and grow over 150 pounds and fight as hard as anything in freshwater?
Not what I would call a pest. Sounds like one hell of a gamefish to me.
Sounds like the kind of fish that once you catch one, you should thank it for all the excitment and let it go so it can get even bigger and you can catch it again!
I'm a avid musky angler here in TN. Folks round here look at muskies as a worthless fish and some kill every one they catch. I dont understand how a bass angler can catch a 4 foot, 30 pound musky on bass gear, and think it such a terable experiance that they feel the need to kill it. What a horrable thing to catch such a awsome apex predater. How can someone like that call themselves a sportsman or outdoorsman?
TN has recently reintroduced gator gar in west TN. They are totally protected at this point. I hope I live long enough to be able to go to the western part of the state and catch 100 pound gater gar.
I'm glad to hear that TX is on the way to start protecting there gator gar. As a avid fisherman, I plan on traveling to TX to fish for these awsome creatures. Hopefully there still be some monsters left by the time I get over there.
Go catch yourself a monster, then let it go. Its good to know theres still monsters out there.


Same reason ranchers shoot coyotes. As for there still being "some monsters left," don't worry about that. No shortage of 'em in Texas.
TNhick  [Member]
5/31/2010 5:01:53 PM EST
Gater gar eat livestock? damage property?
Coyotes take 20 years to reach reproductive age?
Two different things.
I'm not a bleading hart bambi hugger.
I practice selective harvest, and also dispatch pests that cause property damage.

Gater gar are a sport fish and need a realistic managment plan to protect them for future generations.
They are not a pest to be dispatched in any manner or quantity.

They have been completly wiped out in my state, and now the state is spending good money to reintroduce them.
53vortec  [Team Member]
6/1/2010 1:37:34 AM EST
Originally Posted By TNhick:
Gater gar eat livestock? damage property?
Coyotes take 20 years to reach reproductive age?
Two different things.
I'm not a bleading hart bambi hugger.
I practice selective harvest, and also dispatch pests that cause property damage.

Gater gar are a sport fish and need a realistic managment plan to protect them for future generations.
They are not a pest to be dispatched in any manner or quantity.

They have been completly wiped out in my state, and now the state is spending good money to reintroduce them.


When you're running trotlines, that's pretty much the effect. We have gar overpopulation issues in my area, mostly longnose as opposed to alligators, a distinction I should have made earlier. We dispatch them by the dozens when the river is high, and it puts nary a dent in their population. It's nothing to pick any given piece of cover and see 10+ hanging out when the water is still, or circling the dock when night fishing.
shadyhaven  [Member]
6/1/2010 8:31:08 AM EST
long nose gar and alligator gar are two WAY different beasts! longnose gar are more akin to a raccoon or weasal as they are plentifull and bothersome. gator gar are no where near nuisance. just a misunderstood fish.
53vortec  [Team Member]
6/1/2010 11:24:53 AM EST
Originally Posted By shadyhaven:
long nose gar and alligator gar are two WAY different beasts! longnose gar are more akin to a raccoon or weasal as they are plentifull and bothersome. gator gar are no where near nuisance. just a misunderstood fish.


Yeah, I'll fully admit that was my mistake as I was just thinking "gar" through this thread - which back home when mention is made, is in reference to longnose (though there's no shortage of folks that call all gar "alliigator gar").
TNhick  [Member]
6/7/2010 10:32:23 PM EST
I agree with long nose gar being a nusance and is a high density fish that would not be adversly affected by libral harvesting.

flpickupman  [Team Member]
6/7/2010 11:08:09 PM EST
Tips? Hell, they seem to hit everything. I'm trying to catch real fish and these smelly-ass turds keep getting in the way.
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