When we’re fishing in southwest Florida and targeting larger gamefish off-shore in the Gulf of Mexico we usually catch live bait with a Sabiki rig (multiple small hook/flies on tippets). We either visually spot baitfish on the surface, or we mark them on the Raymarine fishfinder and than lower the rig down.
Bluerunners are one of the toughest and strongest swimming baitfish that can crow up to several pounds. The smaller one (as pictured above), work great for most gamefish.
Butterfish (Atlantic Pumper), are one of the “flashiest” baitfish due to their wide body profile, but beware the prickly spines!
The Cigar Minnow is one of my favorite, long, slick and fiesty it’s my favorite bait for King Mackerel. If you’re planning on doing any off-shore fishing either on your own, or with a charter boat, it’s a good idea to have some of these live baitfish.