Fishing the Gulf of Mexico is a unique experience to every level of sports fishing enthusiast. The Gulf is a relatively shallow body of water with man made reefs and a wide variety of fish species. This variety of fish is one of the things which attracts many fishing enthusiasts each year to the Gulf Coast of Florida. Sanibel Island is a barrier island off of the coast of Fort Myers. With its sister island, Captiva Island, it is a popular tourist destination because of its natural beauty and pristine beaches. Both Sanibel and Captiva Islands have made a commitment to preserving the natural beauty of the area by limiting development. This commitment to the environment has made fishing off of the coasts of the islands one of the best areas in Florida to experience the natural beauty of the state.
For most people, the best way to experience fishing off the coast of Sanibel is on a charter fishing boat. A local captain will know all of the best fishing spots and can make a fishing excursion a success. The type of boat is important, too. A Customized Egret 189 Flat Boat (what we use) is considered the top of the line in fishing boats. The carbon fiber and Kevlar construction make this type of boat sturdy and easy to manage in the Gulf waters. A flat boat is best for the Gulf waters because it gives the fishermen the best access to the water and can get into the coves, inlets, and fishing holes where the best catches can be found.
There are several varieties of fish which can be found off the coast of Sanibel. Each season brings its own unique fishing experience. This is one of the reasons the area is so popular and sets it apart from charter fishing experiences in other parts of the country. Offshore species include tripletail, tarpon, cobia, shark, spanish mackerel, king mackerel, barracuda, and snapper. Saltwater fly fishing yields large snook, tarpon, and snapper. Inlet and back bay fishermen will find snook, redfish, seatrout, and tarpon plentiful.
The tarpon is known for its fight and is one of the favorite fish for sports fishermen. The best season for tarpon fishing is spring, but if your captain knows where to fish, the season can last until the first frosts of winter. This is a very long fishing season for one of the most prized species in Florida. Tapron can be caught near the shore or out in the open waters of the Gulf. Tarpon are large and can weigh over 200 pounds. Tarpon fishing competitions are held in Florida and attract sports fishermen from all over the world. Another very popular species is the snook. Snook are another large fish prized for their fight and aggressiveness in the catch. Snook like to hang out near the coast and in holes. The best fishing season for Snook is during the warm months of summer since the fish tend to get sluggish during cold weather.
Charter fishing off of the coast of Sanibel Island in a private charter boat is an experience the rookie or experienced sports fishermen will not soon forget. The beauty of the area and plentiful fishing makes this area one of most popular sports fishing destinations in the country.