FISHIN’ CHICKS | DEIDRA BRIDGER
Q: Do you think more ladies are getting into fishing these days?
A: Yes, without a doubt. I love that first mating puts me in a position to encourage ladies. Several have told me that I put them at ease to get their fishin' on! Gals are also becoming more involved on the business side of things. When I began navigating career opportunities in the great outdoors, it was very noticeable. I was adamant about portraying a competent persona — walk the walk, not just talk the talk. Having a freshwater background, I made an effort to read the top saltwater fishing magazines and fished with professionals to educate myself. I would like to encourage gals to do their part to portray a positive and competent image as not to dilute the lady angler's contribution to the male-dominated fishing industry.
Q: What advice would you give to a young lady interested in getting into fishing?
A: Go! Get on the water. When I first moved to Florida and the saltwater game was new, I made sure all of my buddies knew that if they were hitting the water and had room, I better be invited! I looked for opportunities and made it happen. I would also suggest attending local fishing shows, which is a great way to meet other fishermen and women and learn more about technique and strategy.
Q: So how is it working with Bo?
A: Well, I'm the queen of the house and he is the king of the boat! Actually, we work together really well. I've learned to read him and know what he wants before he has to ask, whether it's putting out the anchor, readying the cast net, reading the electronics, cutting bait, baiting hooks, rigging rods, repositioning the boat, trolling motor, etc… He has a very vibrant and entertaining personality. Being his first mate and girlfriend creates some hilarious moments on the boat. It is definitely a unique dynamic to work, live, and play with your soul mate 24/7. I feel very blessed although sometimes we want to kill each other!
Q: What is the funniest thing that's happened to you while out on the water?
A: Oh wow, we've had a lot of gut-bustin' moments on the water! We have the goliath grouper incident that made TruTv's 20 Most Shocking Moments of 2011 where Bo was fighting an 800-pound freight train with a rope for a show we filmed and it pulled him overboard. Then there's the time I was fighting a 7-foot bull shark in the Mad Fin Shark Series and he lost his balance over the gunwale while landing it and fell in on top of the shark! That aired on the Outdoor Channel, and at the time wasn't funny, but now we laugh about it. But my first and favorite “Capt. Bo falling overboard incident” was when he cast net himself off the boat!
To can see more of Deidra in action, follow her adventures on Facebook at Deidra Outdoors. You can find her First Matin' with Capt. Bo Johnson for their charter biz Tenacity Guide Service in southwest Florida and Key West! Visit www.FishTenacity.com for more info.
You can also catch more of Deidra in action on The D*BO SHOW YouTube channel where she joins Capt. Bo in the woods and water.