By Captain David Lifka

In just a few short weeks the kids will be home for summer break. From kindergarten to college, they will all be back in the house with little to entertain them other than some type of electronic device. There was a time when kids spent the majority of their free time outdoors participating in a number of activities, but it seems that nowadays for some kids, an outdoor activity is nothing more than a quick run to the car or bus. Other than organized sport activities, how do we get our kids outside enjoying the great outdoors around them?

We can start by teaching a kid how to fish. Fishing in Florida is practically a year round activity that the whole family can partake in and enjoy. Access to fishing starts in many of our own neighborhoods, with nearby ponds and creeks just a short walk or bike ride away. Additional accesses to a variety of different fishing locations (all without a boat) are the St. Johns River, Intracoastal Waterway, nearby inlets, piers, lakes, springs, creeks, rivers, and the beach — all are just a short car ride away. Online searches for fishing locations, or searching state, county, and federal parks, can be a great help providing you with the necessary information to get you started with the planning of your next fishing trip.

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Learning the basics of how to fish should not be very difficult. Hook, line, sinker, float, weight, rod and reel complete the list of tools to get you started. Having a friend to teach you can be a great help. For self learners, YouTube videos are seemingly endless with guidance and instructions of how to fish and catch various species. Most any tackle or bait store you care to visit will usually be more than happy to help get you started and pointed in the right direction.

Camping, hiking, biking, kayaking, boating, going to the beach, and even vacation travel can all be outdoor activities that can be done with fishing in mind. Learning to enjoy the outdoors and all that it has to offer can often start with a single fishing pole. The dividends of teaching a kid to fish are many and well worth a try.

Fishing Report: Bream fishing in area ponds and creeks should be pretty good. Live worms or crickets are the better bait choice, but bread ball will work fine for neighborhood ponds. Pompano and whiting still in the surf. Early smaller croaker bite in the St. Johns.

Whether you catch one, some, or none, the family time spent fishing will last a lifetime.

The CreekLine will now include a Catch of the Month photo with Capt. David’s Fishing Report each month. Please email a photo of yourself or your child with the fish caught to Be sure to include the name of the person(s) in the photo, the name of the person who took the photo, the type of fish and date and location of the catch. We will select a photo each month for publication. Good luck!

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