Traveling to Taiwan, part 2

Editor's note: Read Part 1.

The third fish I’m going after — and fully expect to catch —  is a squid. No, I’m not kidding or pulling your leg. My target is a squid on hook, line, rod and reel. And I’m not talking about a baby or a runt. The ones we’re going to target are the real thing, big. I’m not saying they’ll be the giant ones who devour sailors and take whole ships down to the bottom of the ocean, but they’ll be big and bad.

Telling the truth about this, I didn’t know you could catch them on fishing tackle. As best I can tell at this point you use a jig with lots of narrow points on it. I said hook before, but they’re really a bunch of sharp points that are almost like a porcupine quills. I think, anyway.

So you drop this jig down real deep on light line using a light rod and when their tentacles get all hung up in the points you gently bring them up to the surface. It’s crazy, but I can’t wait to do it.

I promise you some more detailed information and some pictures when I get back.

Some of you might think I’m crazy to spend so much of my time fishing for something other than a black bass. After all, they’re the core of my career, and the season is getting ready to start. I have lots of other things I could be doing. But here’s the thing: Fishing is fishing and fish are fish.

The more you know about whatever lives in the water the better off you’ll be when things get tough. A part of acquiring that knowledge is chasing a variety of different things. It’s the only way I know of to learn how Mother Nature has put the outdoors together.  

Anybody can catch them when they’re biting. It doesn’t take a lot of skill to crank them back to the boat and hold them up for a picture. The part that requires education and knowledge is finding them and making them bite something when they’re not in the mood to eat. If you expect to do that, you have to be able to see the big picture.

Another thing that multi-species fishing does is expose you to new tackle, lures and techniques. Every time I go on one of these trips and fish for something different I learn something that helps me when I’m competing at the professional level. Honestly, I’ve never had a trip that didn’t put a few more bass in my livewell in a Bassmaster Elite Series tournament somewhere along the line.

Now I’m going to say something a little controversial: Black bass aren’t the only fish that are worth going after. There are dozens of other species of fish that are just as tough to catch and require just as much skill to catch as they do. Fish for them and you’ll be a better overall angler, and a better bass angler at the same time. 

Don’t limit yourself. Expand your fishing horizons.

Mike Iaconelli's column appears weekly on Bassmaster.com. You can also find him on Facebook and Twitter or visit his website at, mikeiaconelli.com.