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Bass Fishing Florida, Okeechobee, Lake Toho

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ballyhoo picture, description, information.

SCIENTIFIC NAME : Hemiramphus brasiliensis

OTHER NAMES: 'Hoo, Halfbeak

RANGE: All Florida, Bahamas and Caribbean.

HABITAT: Most common around reefs and shoals, but widespread from deep water to larger bays.

DESCRIPTION: Ballyhoo differ from the Needlefishes in that only the lower jaw of the ballyhoo is elongated into a "bill." Several species occur in our waters, but only two are prominent. Their ranges overlap and their appearance is so similar that few anglers care about distinguishing them. The ballyhoo, shown here, has a short pectoral fin and the upper lobe of its tail fin is gray. The Balao, has a long pectoral fin and the upper lobe of the tail is reddish.

SIZE: Both species average 10-12 inches, but commonly reach 15 or 16 inches.

FOOD VALUE: Primarily used as bait.

GAME QUALITIES: Cagey biters and zippy little fighters, but too small to merit attention except when bait is needed.

TACKLE AND BAITS: Ballyhoo respond readily to ground chum. Although cast netting is the way to capture more of them, they can be caught with tiny hooks and small bits of cut bait or Sabiki Rigs., fished from spinning outfits or poles.



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