FISHIN' CHICKS | SHERI DAYE
World-record holder Sheri Daye is extremely handy with a spear. She travels all over the globe to feed her passion for spearfishing, but she took a few minutes out of her schedule to answer some questions about the sport for us in the latest rendition of Fishin' Chicks.
Q: Where is home for you and is that where you do most of your spearfishing?
A: I live in Boca Raton, Florida, and I do most of my spearfishing between the Florida Keys and Stuart, Florida, but I have always enjoyed traveling. As the host of Speargun Hunter I've gotten to go to places like Louisiana, California, Rhode Island, North Carolina, Hawaii, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, Bahamas, and more.
Q: Tell us about Speargun Hunter.
A: It's a TV show that I host on the Outdoor Channel (outdoorchannel.com/Shows/
SpeargunHunter). The new season just started airing in January, and we are preparing to film our seventh season. We visit with different spearfishing enthusiasts across the world, a lot of them are my friends, and we hunt in their backyards, so that keeps it interesting.
Q: How did you get into the sport?
A: I've been a certified SCUBA diver since I was in high school, but I didn't get into spearfishing until about 15 years ago. I was diving with a friend who was spearfishing and I was pointing out fish for him. I decided to buy my own speargun and have been spearing ever since. I like it all — SCUBA diving, tech diving, freediving, spearing, slinging, polespearing…
Q: I've seen you with some very impressive catches. What are some of your memorable fish?
A: The fish I remember most are not always the most impressive looking in photos. Some big fish were relatively easy to spear, and some smaller ones were really difficult. For example, I remember getting a "mu" and an "uku" in Hawaii. They are not big fish, but they are very stealthy and require a long breath-hold before they will allow you to get near them. It takes more skill and finesse and determination to get these fish than a big tuna. But, a big tuna can kill you if you don't handle it correctly. I've gotten a few world records, and I won't lie, it does feel great to land a big fish and those were all memorable!
Q: How do you prepare yourself before a trip?
A: It's good to have a checklist before going out, even locally. There's nothing worse than forgetting that your gun needed a new band or forgetting your wetsuit pants or some other piece of equipment. I also try to get rest, drink water and avoid coffee before freediving. If I'm going on a serious trip and hunting for big-game, I go over every piece of equipment and check every detail down to the crimps and knots. It's shameful to lose a beautiful fish because you didn't prepare correctly.