Video: Saltwater anglers catch giant tuna with drone

Posted May 8

FINGAL HEAD, Australia — The biggest limitation of surf fishing has always been the inability to reach fish that are further out than you can cast. Another challenge is locating schools of fish from your vantage point on the shore.

The solution, it seems, is to harness the power of a drone.

NEW SOUTH WALES, Australia — A new YouTube video shows a pair of friends in Australia using a DJI Phantom 3 Professional to scout out fish and then lower the bait directly to them.

According to a report from ABC, the video was shot near the city of Tweed Heads in New South Wales. One of the men, Jaiden Maclean, was flying his drone over the water to capture footage of turtles and manta rays. When he encountered a large school of longtail tuna, he and his friends devised a way to rig the drone with bait.

"We dropped it right next to the tuna and the first time we dropped it we got one; then I reeled it into the beach,” fisherman Byron Leal told ABC. "Once the tuna grabs the bait, it breaks away from the drone [which is] free to fly around.”

The video shows multiple strikes as Maclean targeted schools of tuna. After each hookup, he would capture stunning aerial footage of the ensuing action. The one fish landed in the video reportedly weighed about 44 pounds.

What is your take on the video? Is drone fishing ethical? Or is it cheating to use high-tech tactics like this?

Grant Olsen joined the team in 2012. He covers outdoor adventures, travel, product reviews and other interesting things. He is also the author of the book "Rhino Trouble." You can contact him at


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