HAPPY FISHING WITH LET'S DO FISHING

Why Is Florida the 'Fishing Capital of the World'?

Florida is the “Fishing Capital of the World” because of its great resources and responsible management. The diversity of sport fishes, habitats, great weather, year-round fishing and superb tourism and fishing industry-related infrastructure are unsurpassed. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and our partners encourage you to enjoy a relaxing day in the great outdoors with your family and friends. This website provides basic tips about how to have a fun, safe experience while helping us conserve our aquatic resources for tomorrow. It highlights quality fisheries throughout Florida that comprise more than 7,700 lakes, 10,550 miles of rivers and 2,276 miles of tidal shoreline. With all those areas teeming with fish, we can’t list them all, but you are always within reach of a place to “wet a line.” Check with local bait-and-tackle shops, chambers of commerce or the websites listed here for more information.

Florida remains the Fishing Capital of the World because of great resources and responsible management. With a huge variety of fish, fishing waters and fishing styles to choose from, along with year-round fishing weather, there is little doubt that Florida will remain the place to go fishing. You can help ensure a vibrant future with high quality, sustainable and safe fishing opportunities by being an ethical angler, mentoring a youth or friend and keeping your license current.

Anytime that you can get out on the water safely (let’s avoid lightning storms and hurricanes). However, as you gain experience you will see that some times are more likely to be productive than others. The following bullet points provide some basic tips.

Time of Day: Typically, for freshwater fishes especially, dawn and dusk tend to be more active feeding periods and also allow some escape from the heat. However, anytime of day you can expect to catch fish, if you know where to find them and are patient. If it’s very hot and bright, the key is finding shade around structure or deeper cooler waters. A great time to fish for inshore or nearshore saltwater fish is when the tide is moving and generally early and late in the day.

Lunar Cycle: Yes, the phases of the moon also play a role in how aggressive fish are and how they congregate, especially around spawning time. The Solunar Theory helps provide some insights into peak fishing periods based on this information--but remember local variables may play an even more important role. A basic tip: The three days before and after new or full moons often make for stimulated fishing action.

Weather Patterns: Many species of fish tend to fish actively just before a front passes through and then shut down somewhat during the sudden barometric changes associated with the storm front itself. If the front lasts for a prolonged period, the aftermath can again bring enhanced fishing conditions. One good source of weather information is Wunderground; others are listed below.

Spawning Cycles: Each fish species tends to spawn at a certain time(s) of year. Part of this is programmed into their genes, but much of it is triggered by water temperature, lunar phase and their nutrition as well. For freshwater fish, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has a chart that shows peak fishing seasons and shows their preferred spawning temperatures, as well as annually updated top fishing destinations by species and quarterly forecasts for major fisheries around the state (go to MyFWC.com/Fishing, then select Fishing sites and forecasts).

Events: Free Fishing Weekend occurs during the first full weekend in April each year. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission sponsors numerous events around the state to encourage parents and other responsible adults to “take a kid fishing” and see what they mean when they say “Water Works Wonders.” The first full week in June is National Fishing and Boating Week and is a time when businesses around the state and our Division of Marine Fisheries concentrate many of their clinics. Watch the agency event schedule for other special opportunities.

Islamorada

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Key West

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Key Largo

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Naples

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Key Biscayne

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The Florida Everglades

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Clewiston

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Panama City

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Destin

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