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Top 4 Fish to Catch This Fall

fishing

Summer is slowly coming to an end, which means all of the fall festivities are about to begin! Football, pumpkin patches, cooler weather, and fishing. Yes, that’s right, fishing. The best part about living in Florida is that you get to catch the fish that are in season without having to freeze. As we get further along into this new season, the water temperatures will start to drop. This temperature difference will bring on the big fish we have been waiting on all year. So, to all our fellow anglers, go catch some bait, prep the boat, and get ready to go inshore fishing! Here are the top four fish to catch this fall in Southwest Florida. 

Tarpon

Southwest Florida is the prime spot for catching tarpon in the fall! You will find tarpon along our coastal beaches in 5- to 20-foot depths. If you’re having a difficult time trying to locate where the tarpon are, our tip would be to follow the birds. Marine birds feasting means you have found the bait – meaning you’ve also found the tarpon. 

Common bait for tarpon is pilchards, pinfish, grunts, mutton minnows, threadfin herring, and more. When fishing this fall, you’ll be looking at catching medium weight tarpon from 50 to 80 pounds. Or, if you prefer to fish with artificial lures, look to using medium-heavy tackle. 

Snook

Snook are great fish to look out for this fall. While snook are still around to catch in the springtime, fall is the optimal time to catch them. As the snook start to feel the water temperature cooling down, they begin to relocate. In the springtime, you will find snook living near the outside edges of the grass flats and outside mangrove growths. But during the fall months, snook relocate to the top of the grass flats. 

Common bait for snook are pilchards, shrimp, mullet, and more. The fish are eating more to prepare for the winter months, so get ready to fight some snook. This is great news to any beginner fishermen. Go try to catch your first saltwater fish this fall!

redfish, redfish recipe
@ Quentin Bacon – http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/redfish-half-shell

Redfish

Redfish are another popular species to catch this season. If you thought fighting with your wife was hard, try fighting one of these fish. This common sportfish will break your line if you don’t give it enough slack, so hold on tight. 

This fall, you’ll find redfish (red drum) located near the ocean inlets and jetties. The reason for this is because the higher salt content is optimal for egg and larval development. Fish will also be moving towards the inlet to find their large prey: mullet. Not only are these fish fun to catch, but they make a dang good meal. To see some of the best ways to prepare redfish, click here.

Speckled Trout

Speckled trout are very common and fun to catch in Florida. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced angler, this fish is a great catch. The best place to find speckled trout are creek mouths that dump into the intracoastal waterways. 

When it comes to the best bait for speckled trout, try using live shrimp or live baitfish. Trout will bite on dead bait as well, but it’s all in how you present it. If the bait looks unnatural or ragged, they will not bite. Speckled trout are very cooperative fish so you will not have to fight them too hard. Put a line in, locate where the fish are feeding, and you should have a trout in no time!

We hope this fall fishing season is a prosperous one! Tell your wife you need to sneak away for a couple of hours to catch your family some dinner. Or take your son out on the boat to catch his first inshore fish. This is the perfect way to ease him into fishing and prepare him for offshore adventures. Get your boat ready, find your live bait, and start bringing fish in by the boatload! And, if you’re looking for a way to haul your boat, consider investing in a boat trailer.