FISHING BOATS: Just about any boat can become a recreational 'fishing boat' for pleasure or sport. Supply fishing tackle, and presto, a runabout becomes a 'Ski and Fish', or a pontoon a 'fishing barge'. Therefore, it is difficult to estimate how many recreational fishing boats there really are, though the number is quite high. This class of boat remains fluid, since most recreation boats can be used for fishing at one time or another, as most are not limited to solely fishing. Fish are caught recreationally from boats ranging from dugout canoes, kayaks, rafts, inflatable pontoons to aluminum pontoon boats, small dingies and jons to specialized bass and panfish boats, runabouts to cabin cruisers and cruising yachts to large, hi-tech and luxurious saltwater fishing vessels. It is estimated that 'Freshwater fishing' accounts for nearly one third of all USA registered boats, and more accurately, most all boats end up being used for fishing on some occasion.
Four common catagories are:
Aluminum Fishing boats can vary from jon flat-bottom and vee boats to specialized panfish and popular bass-configured boats such as the first aluminum 'bass boat' created by Lowe called the Stinger and Hustler models. Typically, aluminum fishing boats will have have swivel fishing chairs for angling, storage bins for fishing tackle, and one or more recirculating tanks called livewells for caught fish. They are usually outfitted with an outboard motor and a trolling electric motor.
Fiberglass 'bass boats' often have specialized hulls for greater horsepower and top speed performance. Bow rider runabouts for multi-purpose, either outboard or I/O, can be configured as 'Ski and Fish' with convertible decks for fishing chairs and livewell.
Saltwater fishing boats vary widely in size and often are specialized for certain species of fish. Larger fishing boats, built with recreational fishing in mind, typically have large, open cockpits at the stern, designed for convenient fishing on the Great Lakes or Big Game in Salt Water applications.
Variations: Bass Boats|Bay Boats|Center Console Boats|Convertible Fishing Boats|Dual Console Boats|Express Fisherman Boats|Fish and Ski Boats|Flats Boats|Fly Bridge Boats|Jon Boats|Multi-Species Fishing Boats|Pilot House Boats|Skiff Boats|Trawler Boats|Tiller Boats|Utility Boats|Walkaround Boats