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Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

the hoofprint

Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

the hoofprint

Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

A deep dive into spearfishing

Senior Andrew Qi shares his hobby of spearfishing.
Photo courtesy of Andrew Qi
Senior Andrew Qi holds up a fish he caught.

As he dives into the cool waters of Newport Beach with his speargun, senior Andrew Qi begins the hunt for the various types of fish, which will end up as his dinner for the day. 

Spearfishing is a fishing method to catch aquatic creatures using a speargun while diving underwater. When it comes to spearfishing, there are several factors to consider. The tide determines whether it is safe to enter the water and the amount of fish you can capture. For example, during high tide, divers cannot go further into the waters if they do not have oxygen tanks. Moreover, it becomes more difficult to catch fish since they are deeper underwater. For free divers like Qi, shallow waters are preferable. 

“I don’t use much equipment when it comes to spearfishing,” Qi said. “Having a wetsuit, snorkels, diving fins and obviously your speargun is pretty much all you need if you want to start out. That being said, it also limits how far you can go in the waters, so I tend to go when there’s a high slack tide, which is the time between high and low tide when the water is relatively calm.” 

As a result of his efforts, Qi would often come back home with several types of different fish, including opaleye, perch and calico bass. With his schedule less packed, Qi plans on spending more time near the beachside, continuing his hobby of spearfishing. 

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“I’ll definitely try to come spearfishing as often as I can,” Qi said. “It’s good to keep a hobby and stick to it.”

Qi first began his hobby when his cousin brought him to the beach. There, he learned about how to use the equipment and how to approach the fish cautiously without scaring it away. This would eventually turn into a weekly routine for Qi, as he would try to go as often as he could during the weekends. 

“I think it is more fun than normal fishing because you can see the aquatic life around you and choose what type of fish you want to capture,” Qi said. “I would rather dive into the water than sit for hours waiting for something to catch my fishing rod.”

In the beginning, learning how to properly spearfish had some difficulties. According to Qi, you have to make sure to come up for air often and also time the pace at which you try to capture any fish. 

“If you approach them too fast, they run away,” Qi said. I was frustrated at the amount of failed attempts but after a couple of tries, I managed to learn how to approach them in a slower manner so that they wouldn’t feel threatened.” 

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George Wang, Sports editor
Hi my name is George Wang, I’m in the 10th grade, and I’m the Sports editor for The Hoofprint. Outside of The Hoofprint, I am on the boys tennis team. In my free time I enjoy gaming and tennis.
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