One of the easiest, if not most reliable, way of sourcing calories in a survival environment is fishing. It has the benefit of being a relatively low calorie exercise (as opposed to stocking game, for example) and offers the benefit of allowing you to rest while you catch a meal. In many cases you will be able to kill two birds with one stone and replenish your drinking water supply while simultaneously finding dinner.
That being said, there are a few things that you need to have to make a go at it. I know you’ve seen Bear Grylls fashion a fishing hook out of a snake bone or some such horse shit, but in reality fishing gear costs almost nothing and the commercial stuff is far superior to anything you could make yourself. It’s easier just to go ahead and spend $20 and make a kit for yourself. Here’s what I would put in the kit:
- A multi-tool (so you can get your McGuyver on in a worst case scenario)
- Fishing line (duh). I recommend at least 20 lb test for the fresh waters of North Florida, but in truth you could get a stronger test and use it for other stuff (setting snares, for example).
- Commercial fishing hooks. Trust me, they work better than bones or soda can tabs.
- Some artificial bait. It’s best to use live bait (worms, crickets, grass hoppers, etc) but you need to be prepared for anything.
- A nylon chord (you can feed it in the fish’s mouth and out through the gills and use it to keep your fish fresh by allowing them to be in the water).
- A small container for holding your kit.
You should be able to stay alive with just that small bit of gear. Of course, it’s always good to have an actual fishing pole, but not entirely necessary. A small, telescoping pole would be best (it’s useless if you can’t bug out with it). Instead, you could use a sturdy stick as a cane pole, or even grab a stick and spool the fishing line around it. It’s not rocket science, and it does work. I’ve done it a time or two on camping trips, etc.