Florida Fishing

Questions about Saltwater Fishing

Florida Fishing

Postby timo119 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 4:43 pm

Hi Larry,

I am going to Florida on vacation. I have never gone fishing for large saltwater fish. I will be fishing in the south western part of Florida. I wanted to target tarpon, or a fish like that. I was wondering how I could catch a tarpon or other large game fish.

Thank you,
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Re: Florida Fishing

Postby crawley15 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 8:42 pm


I love SW Florida. I live in Kansas, but travel to Florida with my wife at least two times per year, mostly to Sanibela and Captiva (Ft Meyers). I fish there whenever I can. I usually go in April and October--both months seem to bracket the best fishing (from Tampa on south).

If you are going to Sanibel, there is a great tackle store there.


Inshore fish; I think that tarpon are the trickiest fish of all time. I would hire a guide. Not knowing where in FL you were travelling to I offer the very informative web site below. It contains fishing reports for all of FL. (Oddly, the hotter it gets the better the tarpon fishing seems to get. For example, July is a great month for snook, but not a great month for fishermen.) There are also links to guides and other helpful web sites.

I have always wanted to fish the E-glades or the 10K island areas. Some buds of mine have done the kayak tour.

Water is very clear from Tampa to the Keys. Makes the fishing more challenging.

If you just want poundage, you can catch toady-looking sharks from the beach at night. Be sure that this is okay with the locals as they sometimes do not appreciate the soaking of bloody baits so close to their patios.

Good luck.

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Re: Florida Fishing

Postby Questor » Mon Apr 25, 2011 8:10 am

Definitely hire a guide for at least a day. It will be worth it. After that you can probably trim expenses by renting a boat or a kayak, or just wading. When I started going to Florida I hired three different guides on different days in different locations and learned enough to be self sufficient for most inshore fishing.

One thing about southwest FL is that it can be dangerous because of the islands and backwaters. You can easily get lost, so if you do venture into the backwaters yourself have a map, a compass, and a GPS and use them. Also be aware that in some backwater areas you can get into places to fish on a rising and high tide and then on a falling tide all you have left is mud and very shallow water. Be aware of what the tides are doing and know when you have to leave so that you don't get stuck. It's still early for the worst of bug season, but take plenty of insect repellent anyway. This is no time to be militantly anti-DEET either. You need powerful insect repellent.

I'm not trying to scare you away, but do take these things into consideration as part of your plan. You'll enjoy the trip!
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Re: Florida Fishing

Postby Bionic » Mon Apr 25, 2011 12:16 pm

I live just south of Tampa Bay and starting now until July the tarpon fishing is good. I got my
first one of the season last Friday and they are increasing in numbers. We are also catching
good speckle trout, redfish, nd some snook. Blacktip and bull sharks are also starting to show up.
We had a nice bull shark of 5-6 ft swim uo to te boat in 2-3ft of water....wish we were ready for it.
Give me an idea of where you are heading and maybe i can help you out.

Just when everything is going your way, something breaks!!!
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Joined: Tue Oct 31, 2006 7:11 pm
Location: Bradenton, FL

Re: Florida Fishing

Postby jhillman17 » Tue Apr 26, 2011 8:06 pm

sorry to hijack the thread, but i didnt think starting a new thread about florida fishing was necessay.

I'm gonna be visiting some family in old tampa bay, they have water access and a boat i can use for the weekend. I'll be there the weekend of May 20th. Anyone offer any good areas to fish to target reds, specks, or grouper? Speaking with the guy who lives there, he said he fishes only a few times per year and usually only catches catfish by the hwy 60 bridge way up in old tampa bay, so he's no help... i'll check out that site listed above tho for ideas.

if i wanted to target some grouper, which bridge's seem to be best for that, anyone have any idea?
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Re: Florida Fishing

Postby Bionic » Wed Apr 27, 2011 7:36 pm

If you can run to the Skyway the Tarpon are here and will be in full swing by the time you're here. Reds, trout and snook will be on most flats. Close to the Skyway there are a bunch of places. Weedon, Joe's bay, Cockroach bay, Bishop's Harbor,
and just about and areas where there is good grass and potholes in 2-3ft of water. Shark fishing should also be good by then. Also Egmont may still have spanish mackrel, bonita, and maybe a stray kingfish.


P.S. I'm out on the water almost every weekend for here on out
Just when everything is going your way, something breaks!!!
Posts: 141
Joined: Tue Oct 31, 2006 7:11 pm
Location: Bradenton, FL

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