Florida Snook The Seasonal Treat

Florida Snook The Seasonal Treat

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Snook are strictly regulated to protect it from overfishing. Catching them requires a license, permit, they must be within range of a certain size, the bag limit is one a day, you’re only allowed to keep them in season and they are not allowed to be sold or bought. So your only way of having some is to grab your gear and get out on the water.

Many say its all worth it for an amazing seasonal treat. Snook is a delicious sport fish, ask almost anyone that has tried a bite. They will normally reply that it was one of the best tasting fish that they have ever had. The meat is white, with medium density and a mild subtle taste.With countless recipes online a quick search will bring up a plethora of options to choose. remember to remove the skin or your gonna have a bad time. Anyways a favorite among many is the deep fried fish method. But which every way you like to prepare them this is definitely a tasty fish unless you don’t take the skin off then its not.

Snook can be found in south and central Florida mostly inshore brackish and coastal waters. they can also be found along man-made structures mangroves, and shorelines and Large schools form in summer for spawning.

TAMPA OFFSHORE TROLLING IN FLORIDA

Tampa Florida Offshore Trolling

Tampa Offshore Trolling Great weather for fishing. West winds are starting to stack up some weeds offshore, and they proved to be somewhat fishy this trip. NE of the weather buoy some tightly scattered weeds proved to be just what the icebox needed. We started around the perimeter first, and the results came slowly, but good. First fish in was a 15lb Mahi. Like the last few weeks of fishing these anglers had never caught a “Dolphin”, and made it the target species of the trip. No company with this catch, so lines back to work.

Client David Bunch and his friend were traveling from Oklahoma to adventure out on a Tampa Offshore Trolling Charter. They were in-store for an amazing day of fishing with great fish in the boat. You never know what to expect when Tampa Offshore Trolling!

 

Another half hour, and the line goes off again. It did not seem too big till the angler put some bend in the rod, then a couple hundred yards of line peeled. This fish was not a jumper, but still we waited till we seen the colors to know what we had. It took a while with our Dolphin rigs to finally work it to the boat, but the Blue stripes was a very welcome sight. Wahoo in the boat. This 50lb fish made the day for these guys, and we still had time to fish.

Port Canaveral Offshore Trolling

Another pass around the area with no results, so we decided to cut through the weed field. A little time passed, and a lot of cleaning fouled lines of weed, but another hookup. Another Mahi-Mahi was on the line, dragging weeds with it. As we got it near the boat we saw it had company. The second fish did not take the other lines, so a pitch rod went to work. It looked, it followed, but nada. Other offerings were put in front of it but it turned its nose up at all we offered, and eventually made its way off. We sent
lines back out, working the weed field some more with no more action while Tampa Offshore Trolling.

Finally we headed to 8A to see if we could pick up a King or two to make a Slam. One line down, another out the back, and into slow gear we went. 20 minutes into the run, the downrigger released, and drag went out. This fish came to the surface and went airborne. A nice 20 lb bull Mahi was on the line. We worked it to the boat, and about a foot short of gaff range it decided it no longer wanted to play the game, and unhooked itself. Big smiles were on the anglers faces despite the loss of this fish. With lobster red sun burnt skin, they were ready to return to port and clean fish.

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Burial at Sea

Burial At Sea

Scattering of Ashes.

The desire to spread or scatter the ashes of a loved one in a special place is an ever increasingly popular choice.  It is a dignified and simple alternative to the conventional funeral and Tampa Florida Fishing can help you make arrangements with a captain and vessel to provide this service.  A funeral at sea is a time-honored tradition.  It is less costly than a conventional funeral and in many ways is much more refined. We provide for a private charter to take up to 6 attendees out for the scattering in most major ports in Florida. If you are unable to go out to sea, one of our captains will take the cremated remains offshore and scatter the ashes for you.  Unattended we provide a respectful, dignified sea scattering service locally in most major ports in Florida.

Burial at Sea–Rules and Regulations.

Ocean Scattering…  As no special permitting is required for this in Florida, you may also do the scattering yourself.  There are certain requirements as set forth below for all ocean remains scattering. This is the actual Environmental Protection Agency rule on the burial of human remains at sea.

From The Code of Federal Regulations

Sec. 229.1 Burial at sea.

(a) All persons subject to title I of the Act are hereby granted a general permit to transport human remains from the United States and all persons owning or operating a vessel or aircraft registered in the United States or flying the United States flag and all departments, agencies, or instrumentalities of the United States are hereby granted a general permit to transport human remains from any location for the purpose of burial at sea and to bury such remains at sea subject to the following conditions:

(1) Except as herein otherwise provided, human remains shall be prepared for burial at sea and shall be buried in accordance with accepted practices and requirements as may be deemed appropriate and desirable by the United States Navy, United States Coast Guard, or civil authority charged with the responsibility for making such arrangements;

(2) Burial at sea of human remains which are not cremated shall take place no closer than 3 nautical miles from land and in water no less than one hundred fathoms (six hundred feet) deep and in no less than three hundred fathoms (eighteen hundred feet) from (i) 27 deg.30’00” to 31 deg.00’00” North Latitude off St. Augustine and Cape Canaveral, Florida; (ii) 82 deg.20’00” to 84 deg.00’00” West Longitude off Dry Tortugas, Florida; and (iii) 87 deg.15’00” to 89 deg.50’00” West Longitude off the Mississippi River Delta, Louisiana, to Pensacola, Florida. All necessary measures shall be taken to ensure that the remains sink to the bottom rapidly and permanently; and

(3) Cremated remains shall be buried in or on ocean waters without regard to the depth limitations specified in paragraph (a)(2) of this section provided that such burial shall take place no closer than 3 nautical miles from land.

(b) For purposes of this section and Secs. 229.2 and 229.3, land means that portion of the baseline from which the territorial sea is measured, as provided for in the Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone, which is in closest proximity to the proposed disposal site.

(c) Flowers and wreaths consisting of materials which are readily decomposable in the marine environment may be disposed of under the general permit set forth in this section at the site at which disposal of human remains is authorized.

(d) All burials conducted under this general permit shall be reported within 30 days to the Regional Administrator of the Region from which the vessel carrying the remains departed.

The following  Notice to EPA is required to be filed within 30 days.

All burials conducted shall be reported within 30 days to the EPA Region in writing. The following information should be included and mailed or faxed to the appropriate Region. You can copy the information below or complete and print the Region 4 burial at sea form (PDF)

NAME OF DECEASED:
DATE OF BURIAL/SCATTER:
TYPES OF REMAINS:Cremated (  )Non-Cremated (  )
LOCATION OF BURIAL/SCATTER
Latitude:
Longitude:
Distance from shore:
(minimum of 3 nautical miles)
Depth of water:
VESSEL NAME:
VESSEL POINT OF CONTACT
Name:
Phone:
PORT OF DEPARTURE:
FOR NON-CREMATED REMAINS
Did the remains appear to rapidly sink to the ocean floor?
Yes (  )      No (  )
DIRECTOR OR PERSON(S) RESPONSIBLE FOR BURIAL ARRANGEMENTS
Name:
Phone:

How to Catch and Prepare Cobia

How to Catch and Prepare Cobia

The Florida State Record for Cobia is 130 lb 1 oz, and was caught near Destin. No wonder Destin is the Cobia Capital of the World!  Imagine a fish of that size!  Cobia are some of the strongest fighting fish because of their beefy muscular make up and their innate tenacity.  The Cobia is a powerful fish and a thrilling catch and is one of the most sought after game fish and once hooked the thrill really begins with line coming off a screaming reel and the angler unable to do anything but hang on!  Cobia are considered an inshore/near shore species and sight fishing is the best method to find these tasty brawlers and works even better if your vessel is equipped with a tower or raised platform.  Cobia can be found in all waters off of the coast of Florida and down into the Keys.

The appearance of the fish in local waters is temperature driven and most Cobia anglers start watching the water around mid March for the fish to show up.  Cobia are generally found in near shore and inshore waters with inlets and bays – the fish like structure and are frequently found around buoys, pilings and wrecks in these areas.  Cobia spawn in spring and early summer and can be found throughout the summer months.  Experienced Cobia anglers will look for turtles, manta ray and floating debris to find Cobia- the fish enjoy the easy pickings from the rays as they dig up the bottom foraging for their own dinner.

Cobia are a versatile game fish caught on fly and spinning tackle both.  They can be found in offshore waters, near shore waters and on the flats. So no matter what your equipment, type of boat or level of experience there is A COBIA IN YOUR FUTURE!

Best bait and tactics for catching Cobia.

The BEST TACTIC for hooking and catching Cobia it to BE PREPARED!  Cobia have a reputation for being extremely finicky when it comes to live baits and lures so have several rods baited and standing by with a variety of offerings.  Cobia frequently travel in at least pairs and sometimes threesomes – have several stout rods rigged and ready to go at the fish opportunity.  Live crabs and small fish are good bait for cobia but eels and live pinfish and a variety of artificial baits work well especially bucktail combinations with plastic tails. My favorite bait for cobia is an artificial eel made of surgical tubing with a lead sinker at the head.  Live baits for cobia include spot, menhaden, mullet, minnows, perch, eels, shrimp, crabs, and clams. These use of these live baits vary with season and location and only experience can tell you what to use and when. Keep bait near the surface or, if cobia are deeper, add just enough weight to get the bait down and still retain its movement. Medium to heavy tackle is generally a good idea to land these fish that average 30 pounds and as every true Cobia hunter knows can easily go over 60 pounds.  Fishing for cobia along pilings with a weighted eel is a favorite tactic of experienced anglers.

How to Catch and Prepare CobiaCast the reel so it drops alongside the pilling and drops down- if you don’t get a strike the first time keep trying until you have covered all angles before moving on.

A word of caution, Cobia are a tough hard fighting fish and large specimens when gaffed and boated have caused anglers to lose equipment, be injured and have damaged boats.  Have a plan when you get that fish over the side- have a fish box open and ready and the decks cleared so you can easily in one coordinated move land the fish and move it to the fish box.

Good recipes for cooking and eating Cobia.

Cobia are excellent table fare and are also great raw for sushi or sashimi. It can also be used as a replacement for fish such as tuna, if people are looking for an environmentally sustainable alternative, as the texture and flavor are quite similar.   Did you know that Cobia grows three times as fast as salmon and has been commercially produced in Asia, particularly in Taiwan where it is stocked in about 80% of ocean cages.  Here are a few good Cobia recipes to try out- but nothing can beat a hot charcoal grill and a little Italian seasoning splashed on top!

Lemon Butter Cobia

Ingredients:
1 lb. cobia steaks
1/2 fresh lemon
1 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. Old Bay crab seasoning or equivalent

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Drain steaks and lay in a casserole dish coated with olive oil.

Squeeze lemon juice over steaks, coat with butter and sprinkle with seasoning.

Bake for 10 minutes or until fish is white on the outside and still slightly pink in the center.

Baked Cobia with Italian Herbs

Ingredients

1 lb. cobia steaks
1 cup crushed bread crumbs
3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano
1/2 cup melted butter

Directions:

1. Rinse fillets and allow to drain in a colander. If necessary, blot away excess water with a paper towel.

2. Mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl.

3. Dredge fillets in butter and roll in dry season mixture. Place fillets on a greased cookie sheet.

4. Bake at 375-degrees for approximately 15-20 minutes. The fish is cooked when it is white and flakes easily

What is a rigging needle?


A rigging needle is simply a needle used for rigging bait to help aid on offshore fishing such as:  Trolling, Kite fishing, or live-bait fishing. One end has a hole where the thread is placed while the other end is sharp to be able to penetrate the bait/lure body.

How to Rig the Bait

Of course, there are many different ways to rig your bait, lure, etc. In general, you have to understand that something that you are about to rig to the line. What is it made of? Does it have a head and a body? What is the shape and type of its head? These are just some of the things you have to deal with.

Learn when to use a leader and what leader to use. Select the bait or lure. Cut several pieces of bow string (or other sturdy string), prepare strings as many (or more than) as your lures/baits. Get some pieces of Dacron or similar material. Glue all these stuff together and use a rigging needle to stitch them securely, making sure to arrange them in such a way that you will maximize your chances of landing as many fish as you can.

There are needles readily available, though you can also make your own.

Making Your Own Rigging Needle

What you need is a piece of wire coat hanger, file, hammer, and a drill with a 1/8” drill bit. It is quite simple to improvise a rigging needle. First, untwist the coat hanger and cut off a 12” piece (make it shorter or longer, depending on your bait; 12” is good for rigging eels). Use a file to sharpen one end. Use the hammer to flatten the opposite end. Drill a hole in the flattened portion and that’s it – you’ve just finished making your own needle.

What are the best tasting fish in salt water?

Taste, of course, is a matter of personal preference. Something that tastes delicious to one person may not be tasty to another. Still, there are those that are thought delicious by most people. The following are some saltwater species that a lot of people think are the best tasting fish.

What are the best tasting fishWahoo

This fish is highly regarded by many gourmets. Its meat is white and delicate, delicious no matter how it is cooked.

Mahi Mahi or Dolphin Fish

Fondly called the “chicken of the sea”, this fish can be cooked in many ways. A lot of people consider this a favorite.

Cobia

This is another favorite – can be raw wherein it is soft and juicy and can be cooked in several ways, such as fried or in soup, wherein the meat is flaky and delicious.

Monk Fish

With a tail meat that tastes like lobster, this fish is considered the “poor man’s lobster”. Although the fish, itself, does not look appealing, its meat is so delicious that many people consider this a favorite.

Halibut

Halibut has low fat content and is so delicious that it still tastes wonderful even with little seasoning. This fish is often broiled, grilled, or fried.

Cod

A common ingredient in “fish and chips”, the meat of this fish is moist and flaky. Its liver is also considered a delicacy.

Salmon

This is among the most popular fish – raw, smoked, or cooked. Aside from having a delicious meat, this fish is also favored because of its high nutritional value.

Tuna

Most of the tuna species have a delicious meat, high nutritional value, and delicious even when canned.

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What are Outriggers Used For?

What are Outriggers Used For?

What are Outriggers Used For?Mainly used in deep sea trolling, outriggers are a pair of long poles fitted on both sides of a boat that holds fishing lines away from the boat. It is usually made of fiberglass and aluminum, and is tilted at an angle between 70 to 80 degrees.

When being used, outriggers are lowered to an angle nearly the same level as the water’s surface. At the edge of each outrigger is a pulley with a cord, attached to which is a quick release clip that holds the fishing line. Once a fish strikes, the line is released so that it can be landed with the use of the traditional rod and reel.

Generally, outriggers improve the chances of a fish striking because not only does it allow the angler to cover more ocean space, it also permits the use of multiple lines. Because outriggers allow the use of multiple rods and reels, anglers can troll as many fishing lines as it may allow, thus, simulating a school of bait fish. It also allows the leader out of the water, thus, preventing bubbles that may scare the fish away.

Outriggers also hold the fishing lines at a distance from both sides of the boat, spreading the lines far enough to prevent the risk of tangling. With more lines in the water, the angler can set them at different distances and depths that can create a variety of natural patterns to increase the chances of a strike.

The shallow, rocky reefs are also home to many fish species, however, trolling in these grounds are dangerous. With the use of outriggers, the fishing boat can stay in the safe deeper water while the lures are positioned to graze the shallow waters.

Snook Migratory Habits

Snook Migratory Habits

Snook Migratory Habits

Snook are fish that live either in saltwater or fresh water. Tricky to catch, Snook are still much sought-after because of their delicious meat and the challenge of catching one. Like most fish, Snook are cold-blooded animals. Thus, they rely on the water temperature to regulate the temperature of their bodies. Cold temperatures are detrimental to the health of this fish species and sudden drops in temperature can be deadly. Thus, Snook has to migrate to warmer waters such as Flamingo in the Florida Keys when winter begins.

The migration patterns largely depend on where they are currently located, what temperature that location has, and in what direction is the warmer body of water. Snook migrating through the waters of Florida follow an east to west pattern, as opposed to the usual north to south that many fish species do.

Snook can easily move from freshwater to saltwater and vice versa. Those who have observed them swim upstream say that they stay close to the center of the water body – be it a large river or a small creek. Also, Snook love to travel during day time.

The problem with migrating Snook is that they ignore your bait, most of the time, no matter how delicious it might be. They are also easily spooked so fly fishing for Snook can be frustrating. In fact, Snook are the most difficult to catch when they are migrating. Still, if you try to be as subtle as you can, you’d probably be able to entice one to take your bait.

Snook Fishing in Florida:

Snook Fishing in Florida in the ultimate inshore fishing experience. You truly can’t beat the action especially once the snook move in during their migrations. Most of the migrations are due to mating and that search for warmer weather. Summer months are the most productive months to catch them but also the time of year that you can’t harvest them. According to FWC, Dec. 15- Jan. 31st and June 1st- Aug. 31st seasons of harvest are closed.

September 1st brings about one of the most incredible times to go Inshore Fishing in Tampa. Inshore Fishing for these elusive beasts will be one of the most action-packed fishing adventures of your lifetime!

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Another successful trip with happy customers..

Date: 10/15/2010: iOutdoor fishing trip,

Customer: Matt Wood

Captain: Mike Whitley

Destin Fishing

Another successful trip with happy customers.  Matt Wood and his son had a blast both days.  The father is currently leading the blackfin tuna division in the Destin Fishing Rodeo, which is a month long tournament.  I would bet it is one of the largest in the nation with all the categories and entries throughout the month.

On October 15th and 16th we had the pleasure of taking out the father (Doc Matt) and son (young Matt) fishing duo for a couple of great trips.  The two wanted to do a mixture of bottom fishing and trolling.  The first day we focused on red snapper and king mackerel.  While the second day we targeted red snapper, with the initial plan of adding amberjack in the mix.  However, Mother Nature changed our plans for the second trip and we shifted our focus on triggerfish, instead of amberjack.

Young Matt caught his very first king mackerel on Friday and had a blast catching it.  He easily caught his share of red snapper as well that day.  On Saturday, he started us out with a bonus and his first 20 pound Blackfin Tuna.  This fish gave him a fight, but was no match for Matt.  Matt later earned the nickname of Trigger-Matt for catching over 10 keeper triggerfish.

Doc Matt was just as energetic as his son and caught his share of red snappers and king mackerel.  His claim to fame moment came on Saturday while his son was winding in the tuna.  We quickly threw out a second bait and Doc was hooked up.  The fish fought hard and seemed to be bigger than the one his son was winding in.  After, what seemed to be a long battle for Doc, we boated a 25.4 pound Blackfin Tuna.  This fish was weighed and entered in to the Destin Fishing Rodeo (month long fishing tournament) and is currently leading the Charter Boat Blackfin Tuna division.  He later caught a number of nice red snapper and a red grouper.

We can’t wait to take these two fishing fanatics out again.  They never slowed down on their fishing, even when the sea conditions were rough Saturday morning.  These two definitely caught enough fish to eat a few meals with plenty of family members.

Thank you again for sending us more great customers.  Let me know if you need any further info.  Please see attached photos.  Have videos, but will have to edit before sending.