Underwater cameras have been used in commercial fishing for decades, this was done primarily as a means of providing visual confirmation for sonar data or for environmental observations. Although, these commercial units were large, heavy, expensive, and very limited in their abilities.
Since many open water, especially ocean water, is usually opaque because of suspended particles and living organisms, the ability of cameras to give useful information is very limited. Underwater cameras were used by the commercial fishing industry to confirm the presence of underwater obstacles that usually would cause ships to wreck and foul nets.
The presence of small, inexpensive digital cameras in the late 90s made it possible for sport fishermen to begin buying and using such cameras. These were smaller cameras, and they came with simpler options than those that you will find on the large commercial units, these underwater cameras have grown to be inexpensive, easy to deploy, and are capable of functioning without them being continuously connected to a boat’s power system or on-shore power source.
Underwater Cameras for Ice Fishing
Although these cameras have become popular today with lake and littoral fishermen that want to observe underwater hazards and fish populations to have a better understanding of their favorite fishing spot, these underwater cameras have time and time again proven to be the most useful to ice fishermen.
Since ice fishermen must put time and effort into each hole that they drill and each line that they drop, knowing just what is below before they drop their line is very important. The use of underwater cameras is useful in that the cameras are made with the ability to fit into holes that are way smaller than what is needed for fishing. This means that small test holes can be drilled to check to see if an area is worth fishing before the fishermen will drop their lines.