If you’re interested in getting into fishing, you’re going to need to get yourself a cast net. But what size cast net should you get? Here’s a quick guide to help you make the right decision.
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The Different Sizes of Cast Nets
Cast nets come in all sorts of different sizes. The size you need depends on what kind of fish you’re after and how big they are. You don’t want a net that’s too big or too small.
Here is a list of the most common sizes of cast nets and the fish they’re best for catching.
3/8-inch mesh: This size of net is good for catching bait fish like minnows and shrimp. The smaller mesh means that the bait can’t swim through it.
1/2-inch mesh: This size net is good for catching medium sized bait fish like mullet, herring, and sardines. The larger mesh allows you to catch more fish at once but some might be able to swim through it.
3/4-inch mesh: This size net is good for catching larger bait fish like mackerel, menhaden, and anchovies. The larger mesh allows you to catch more fish at once but some might be able to swim through it.
1-inch mesh: This size net is good for catching very large bait fish like tuna, marlin, and sailfish. The large mesh means that you will be able to catch a lot of fish at once but some might be able to swim through it.
Small: 3/8” to 5/8” mesh size, 3 to 6 foot radius
A small cast net is a versatile tool that can be used for multiple purposes. The 3/8” to 5/8” mesh size is perfect for bait fish, such as shad, herring, or anchovies. The smaller the mesh, the more bait you can catch at one time. A small net is also a good choice if you’re targeting specific fish, like bluegill or crappie. The 3 to 6 foot radius will give you plenty of coverage to make sure you don’t miss any fish.
Medium: 1/2” to 3/4” mesh size, 6 to 8 foot radius
Cast nets come in various weights and mesh sizes. The size of the net is important, but often overshadowed by the weight and mesh size. The size is determined by the radius of the net, which is usually given in feet. The most common sizes for a three-quarter-inch (1.9 cm) mesh net are six, seven, eight, and ten feet (1.8, 2.1, 2.4, and 3 meters).
A cast net that is too small will not be able to catch enough bait fish to make it worth your while. A cast net that is too large will be difficult to throw and will take up too much space when stored. As a general rule of thumb, a good size for most people is a six to eight foot (1.8 to 2.4 meter) radius net with a three-quarter-inch (1.9 cm) mesh size.
Large: 3/4” to 1” mesh size, 8 to 10 foot radius
The 3/4” to 1” mesh size cast net is large enough to target a variety of freshwater and inshore saltwater species. This includes bass, catfish, panfish, as well as shrimp, crab, and other baitfish. The 8 to 10 foot radius will give you the coverage you need to make a good haul without being so large that it becomes unwieldy.