Drones are all the rage, and new uses are being discovered for them every day.
In the world of fishing, the HD video livestreaming, long range, and lifting capabilities of drones are being used to give anglers an edge.
Fishing drones are used to help locate groups of fish, and to drop bait even further than casting distance.
Here’s the best five drones for fishing, what to look for in a fishing drone, and who should get a fishing drone.
Types of Fishing Drones
There’s two main types of fishing drones. The first type of fishing drone is for spotting fish.
When fishing in the clear waters of the ocean, having a drone in the air can make finding the perfect school of fish really easy.
The second type of fishing drone is for casting bait. This is perfect for getting your bait out past the surf even further than casting distance.
Features a Fishing Drone Absolutely Needs to Have
Every fish-spotting and bait-casting drone needs to have a good gps, camera, range, battery life, and power.
Features like waterproofing are nice as well!
GPS capabilities like return to home, position hold, and seeing your flight path on a map is very important for fishing drones with the added risk of flying over water. Flying from a boat is almost impossible without the added stability of a GPS drone.
Fish Finding Drone Features
Finding fish can take a while even with a drone in the sky, and when you’re looking for the perfect school of fish the last thing you want to happen is to run out of range or battery life.
Having a good camera is necessary as well, since it’s going to be impossible to see any fish in the water with a low quality camera.
Bait Casting Drone Features
Power and battery life are the most important for bait casting drones, since there’s quite a lot of wind for the drone to fight by most shores.
Best Drones for Spotting Fish
DJI Mini 2
The DJI Mini 2 is a very small drone that doesn’t need registration, that has an impressive half hour flight time.
This drone is the easiest drone to get for finding fish, because it has the least restrictions due to it’s under 250 gram weight, and it’s reasonable price.
With a 10km range and a half hour battery life, the DJI Mini 2 lets you spend the most time in the air possible. It can be charged from any USB-C power source as well, even the controller.
As with all DJI’s drones, the Mini 2 has a great GPS that can return to home, and can show the flight on a map.
This drone can record in crystal clear 4k video and can stream 720p video to any phone or tablet connected to the controller.
A bit of wind isn’t going to be a problem for this drone with a Level 5 wind resistance rating, which is about 25 miles an hour. If you’re going to be flying a lot of wind or rainy conditions though, the Swellpro Splashdrone 4 or DJI Air 2S is recommended.
Swellpro Splashdrone 4
The Swellpro Splashdrone 4 is the ultimate waterproof drone for every type of drone fishing.
Both the controller and the drone are completely waterproof, and the drone can even land in the water, flip itself over, and record underwater videos.
The reason the SplashDrone 4 is the best drone for finding fish is because the return to home point updates based on where the controller is, so even if the boat drifts a little, the drone will return to home perfectly.
2kg of payload capacity means this drone can also drop bait, which is an attachment that is sold separately.
30 minutes of flight time and mission planning means that scouting for fish is easier than ever, all the pilot has to do is keep an eye on the video.
The only downside to this incredible drone is that the range only goes to 5km, which is half the distance of the DJI Mini or DJI Air 2S.
DJI Air 2S
The DJI Air 2S is the best drone for range and video quality. If you’re trying to find fish, you won’t get better quality footage from any other drone.
Instead of the 720p 10km video range of the Mini 2, this drone has a 12km range of full HD footage. The 1 inch sensor combined with 5.4K video makes the camera one of the best on the market.
The Air 2S has the same GPS and flight time as the Mini 2, but it includes obstacle sensing so you don’t need to worry about crashing your drone.
40mph gusts of wind were tolerated in a test done by DC Rainmaker, so the DJI Air 2S has a good wind improvement from the Mini 2.
You can also drop bait from this drone with attachments available from Gannet.
You can buy the Air 2S From DJI here.
Best Drones for Casting Bait
DJI Phantom 3 & 4
The body design of the DJI Phantom 3 and 4 drones make them perfect for dropping bait.
They might not have the latest and greatest camera or super far range, but they have good flight times, reliable performance, lots of power, and a good GPS.
Dronefishing.com has made many attachments to make fishing with your DJI Phantom 3 or 4 really easy.
Using a Phantom as a fishing drone is one of the best budget options available, since they can be bought for 300-400 bucks on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.
Gannet II Drone
If you’re looking for the ultimate drone that’ll last you a lifetime of surf fishing, look no further. The Gannet II drone is specifically designed to give you the best experience possible with it’s wind-resistant design and fully waterproof body.
Not only can this drone handle the elements, you don’t need to worry about getting sand in your remote since Gannet specifically designed their controller not to have this issue.
To make the experience as easy as possible, the controller has a built-in display so you don’t need to use a phone or tablet. When combined with it’s bright lights and GPS, this drone is perfect for easy and worry-free use.
Lugging out big shark baits isn’t going to be an issue for this drone either, with a max lift of 5 kg.
Gannet went the extra mile with this drone, and made a spotlight attachment and an external battery for longer flight times to let their drone be used for search and rescue missions. It can even fly a tow line to a person struggling to stay afloat off-shore.
The Gannet II or Gannet II Pro is available from Gannet.
Using a drone on your next fishing trip can be a really fun experience with very rewarding results!
My personal pick for the best fish finding drone is the DJI Air 2S. You can’t beat it’s range and 1080p video transmission!
For dropping bait, the SwellDrone Splashdrone 4 and DJI Phantom drones work, but the Gannet II drone takes 1st place.
Let us know whether you think drone fishing is fair, and what drone is your favorite!