2018-03-01 / Fish Stories

Catch some springtime fun

This past winter has to go down in the record books as one of the longest and coldest that we have experienced here along the Gulf Coast in quite some time. I know one thing for sure and that is, I want to get out and spend some time on the water.

Finally, the daylight hours are getting longer each day and the temperatures are beginning to stabilize. This means the water temperatures will begin to increase, as well.

Increasing water temperature is a fisherman’s dream in the springtime. These warmer temperatures bring with them lots of baitfish that move in closer to shore. Then, just behind the baitfish are the other species that are so fun to target here along our coast.

We are very fortunate, here in the Pensacola area, because we have rivers, bays, sounds, public piers and Gulf waters to fish. Depending on your angling abilities and needs, your type of fishing can be found right here.

Father and son enjoy a nice catch of Vermilion Snapper aboard the Entertainer 1. Father and son enjoy a nice catch of Vermilion Snapper aboard the Entertainer 1. For the next month or so, the inshore fishing will be on fire. The most sought after species will be the sheepshead. These fish are moving in the local passes in large schools and are getting ready to spawn.

They tend to hang around the rock jetties, bridge pilings and other debris piles on the bottom. The great thing is that, if you do not have access to a boat or local guide, you can catch these awesome fish from the beaches around Ft. Pickens.

A light-spinning outfit with a two-ounce weight and a 1/0 hook, baited with a live shrimp, will produce all the action you can stand. The current bag limit is 15 per person per day, and they are great eating, too.

Out in the Gulf, near shore, the all-time favorite sport fish of our area will begin to make their annual migration from east to west. This would be the elusive cobia or ling.

These massive fish travel the coastline, cruising to the west to spawn around the Mississippi delta. They, too, can be caught off the local Gulf fishing piers or by boat within a mile of shore. Fishing for cobia is much like hunting animals, in that you sight fish for them. They love a southeasterly wind and these winds bring the fish up to the surface and closer to shore so they are the easiest to spot. They resemble a large catfish and can range in size from 30-130 pounds.

Further offshore, the bottom fishing is also heating up. For the first time in two years, the Grey Triggerfish season opens up March 1 in federal waters. These fish are caught on both natural and artificial reefs. The average size is between five and 10 pounds, and they are absolutely the best eating fish out there.

Our staple snapper during the springtime is the Vermilion Snapper. These, too, can be caught in the same areas as the triggerfish. They are red in color, just like the Red Snapper, but range in size from two to five pounds. There is a 10 per person per day limit, and it’s not hard to catch your limit every trip.

Well, it’s time to get out and wet a hook. Lets enjoy some of the best fishing around, right here along the Gulf Coast. If a fishing trip is still on your bucket list, give us a shout or check us out on FB at Entertainer Charters or www.entertainercharter.com. We can certainly hook you up on your next fishing adventure. As we always say aboard the Entertainer “may the good fishing be yours!”

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