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Have you ever caught a Bass in a Clown Suit?  More commonly known as the Peacock Bass, South Florida is the only place in the main land USA that they live. They’re a tropical fish that require warm water to survive.


I went out to hunt for these unusual looking fish with local guide Chris Licato, AKA “The Swamp God.” Chris is the ultimate guide with a flair all his own; he talked about techniques, locations and presentations all the while giving positive feedback. He never brought a rod or caught a fish.

He’s the kind of guide whose main goal is your enjoyment and experience.  A lot of guides will fish during trips and not surprisingly catch the biggest fish, which is not cool in my opinion. The Peacock Bass are by far stronger and fight harder, pound for pound, than a Largemouth! They don’t achieve the massive size of the ones in the Amazon, but still have the same “Never give up“mentality and could be described as a Smallmouth on steroids!

As the case with the Largemouth, Chris recommends that the fish be released, but with that being said, I believe the limit is two per day. The fish are most active during the warmer months in Florida. ChompGod Check out  Chris at his website, swamp god outdoors   or send him a PM on Chris’ Face book page  for the best times to come.  Chris will provide all the tackle, but if you like bring some of your own, he’ll also instruct you on what to bring and what to wear.   Kudos to Chris for a fantastic fishing trip and for our friendship. I have a new-found respect for these Bass in Clown Suits! I also want to thank Breathe Like a Fish, Bassaholics, Glacier Gloves and California Reservoir Lures, Bozo the Clown Killer Jigs  for their fine products that made this trip that much more enjoyable.

Put this trip on your bucket list you’ll be glad you did… Until next time Stay on Em … CHOMP !!



Danny Barker

I’m a Calif. transplant living in Ocala, FL. I’ve lived here for the last 6 years. My home town of Sacramento/ Folsom, Ca is where I lived for 40 years. Some of the best bass fishing in the country with the Delta, Clear Lake, Folsom and tons of other outstanding water. I write/moderate for a cool website called the Unemployed Fishing Club Unemployed Fishing Club, I’m also a writer/ Field Editor for North Central Florida Fish Looking forward to contributing to MLO. Look me up on FaceBook too !


One comment on “Destination South Florida: Peacock Bass

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James Fortwengler on September 3, 2013 7:33 pm

I saw the Bass in the clownsuit up close when I was in Hawaii They had them stocked in the ponds @ the Hilton .I was very tempted to go down @ in the wee hrs. & play with them .I bring a portable rod with me anytime I go away so I can get my line wet . didn’t want to get the Hotel security all excited so I left my fishing to the pacific ocean ,Thanks for the beautiful pics Danny .

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