Which Fish Are in Season in Florida This Spring?

February 22, 2019

We’re just about at the changing of the seasons once again, which means the water conditions will be changing and new fish will be coming into the region. People who are interested in booking a fishing charter in Sarasota, FL this spring might be wondering exactly what fish they can expect to be in season. After all, certain fish have different types of tendencies, and may dictate a need for different types of lures or equipment.

With this in mind, here are some of the fish that will be in season in Florida in the upcoming months:

  • Cobia: Cobia are some of the most popular early-season fish for people coming down to the Sarasota area between the months of March and May. These fish are distinct for their long gray and white lateral stripes and their rather broad head. They begin to migrate in toward the shore as the spring starts to set in and the waters warm up a bit.
  • Spanish mackerel: The Spanish mackerel return to the area in schools toward the shore and offshore around mid-April, and stick around until September. They love to hang out over deep grass beds.
  • Trout: Various types of trout come back to the Florida waters in March, and stay around until late fall. They tend to be dark gray or green in color with black spots, and are often found in estuaries.
  • King mackerel: The king mackerel, a much larger fish than the Spanish mackerel, doesn’t show up until a little later in the spring (usually sometime in May), but when they do return, they’re one of the most popular fish for charter fishers to go after. They frequently weigh up to 20 pounds, but can grow to be quite massive, with the record being a 90-pounder.
  • Red fish: Red fish hang out around Florida all year long, so you can expect them to still be biting if you come down this spring. Appropriately for their name, they are a copper color and have one or more spots at the base of their tail. They migrate inshore from estuaries. They typically weigh around eight pounds, but it’s not unheard of for them to grow to be several times that size.
  • Shark: Shark are also in the Florida waters all year long, including in the spring. There are several different species that you’ll find both close to and away from the shores, including hammerhead, mako and blacktip.
  • Grouper: Grouper season closes in February and March, but opens back up in April and remains open for the rest of the year. This species is primarily offshore, favoring rocky bottomed areas. They frequently weigh around 100 pounds or more, making them a favorite game fish on charter excursions.

For more information about the fish you can expect to be in season if you come down for a fishing charter in Sarasota, FL this spring, we encourage you to contact the team at Charter Boat Shark today. We look forward to helping you get ready for the trip of a lifetime!

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