FISHING & BOATING

The Daytona Beach / New Smyrna area features some of the best ocean fishing found anywhere. Blue Marlin are found in the Gulf Stream. Closer to shore, Sailfish, Dolphin, King Mackerel, Wahoo and Tuna are caught on trolled baits. On the bottom around the numerous reefs, Grouper and Red Snapper are the most avidly sought species. You can charter a boat from the docks at Ponce Inlet.

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Ten Thousand Islands , Florida

The Ten Thousand Islands is the coastal area in the Everglades National Park where mangrove islands and shallow creeks make a wilderness maze. Some of the islands are landmasses called keys but many are clumps of mangrove trees rising out of coral reefs, oyster beds, and sandy shoals. The area lies southeast of Naples and northwest of the Everglades National Park. The many islands form a transition from the freshwater marsh of the « river of grass » to the open salt water of the Gulf of Mexico.
Marco Island is the largest of Florida’s Ten Thousand Islands, located on the Gulf of Mexico in Southwest Florida. 1000islands2

Moving to South Florida Paradise!

South Florida and Southwest Florida offers gorgeous beaches and a tropical lifestyle! With less severe winters than many parts of the country you can expect to spend less on winter clothing and heating fuel – making the cost of living more reasonable. South Florida is one of the fastest-growing areas in the state and a great business environment. South Florida’s skilled workforce and advanced infrastructure have helped the growth of more than 600 technology companies and many Fortune 500 businesses.There is a great transportation network, including a recent $438 million expansion and upgrade at Southwest Florida International Airport. Historic and cultural amenities range from Seminole Indian reservations to Thomas Edison’s home, from hundreds of local art galleries to the region’s many performing arts centers making moving to this region in Florida very desirable. The Southwest Florida real estate market is in full swing with golf communities, condos, waterfront homes and all types property. For more information on Florida relocation click here

Everglades City

Everglades City is a mile long mangrove island with crab houses, shops, restaurants, motels, marinas, museums, an airport, canoe & kayak guided adventures, aerotours, boat tours, airboat rides, canoe/kayak/bicycle rentals and nice walking paths.It is known as ‘the fishing and stone crab capital of Southwest Florida’ and is one end of the Wilderness Waterway, the Everglades backcountry route linking Everglades City to Flamingo.

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Everglades Camping

There are two campgrounds inside the park Flamingo and Long Pine Key.

Long Pine Key Campground
Located 7 miles / 11 km from the main entrance, just off the main road.
108 drive up sites for tents and RVs, including one group site.
Close by: Fishing pond, hiking trails, amphitheater.

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Flamingo Campground
Located at the end of the main park road in Flamingo.
234 drive in sites, including 55 with a view of the water, four group sites, 64 walk-up sites (20 on the water’s edge).
Close by: observation tower at Eco Pond, hiking trails,canoe trails and fishing.

Camping is offered year-round at Long Pine Key &Flamingo.Reservations are strongly recommended at Long Pine Key and Flamingo during peak season from November 23 to April 18. Call the reservation agent at (800) 365-2267 up to five months in advance. Both campgrounds are available on a first-come, first-served basis the rest of the year. Frontcountry fees during peak season are $14 for walk-in sites, $14 for RV sites, and $28 for group sites. Park campgrounds at Long Pine Key &Flamingo have drinking water, picnic tables, grills, tent and trailer pads, and rest rooms. Flamingo has cold-water showers and Flamingo Marina offers hot showers for $3. RVs are welcome, but there are no hook-ups. Campground stays are limited to 14 days during the peak season. Checkout time is 11 A.M.

Back Country Camping in the Everglades
Everglades National Park has three kinds of backcountry campsites: Chickees, Ground Sites, and Beach Sites.
Backcountry permits are: $10 (1-6 people) $20 (7-12 people) and $30 (more than 13 people). 

Chickees are located along interior rivers and bays where no dry land exists. They are elevated 10 foot x 12 foot / 3 m x 3.7 m wooden platforms with roofs, usually constructed on open water, well away from mangrove trees. A narrow walkway leads to a self-contained toilet. You’ll need a free-standing tent, since stakes or nails are not allowed.
Ground sites 
are mounds of earth a few feet higher than the surrounding mangroves, located along interior bays and rivers. 
Beach sites 
are located on coastal shell beaches. Many beach sites have no toilets.pic1s

Fishing game


COMMON EVERGLADES GAME FISH

Snook
Tarpon
Redfish
Description: distinct lateral line; high, divided dorsal fin; sloping forehead; large mouth, protruding lower jaw; grows much larger than other snooks; pelvic fin yellow. Where found:from central Florida and South Texas south, usually INSHORE in coastal and brackish waters, along mangrove shorelines, seawalls, and bridges; also on reefs and pilings nearshore.
Size: most catches 5 to 8 pounds. *Florida Record: 44 lbs., 3 ozs.
Description: last ray of dorsal fin extended into long filament; one dorsal fin; back dark blue to green or greenish black, shading into bright silver on the sides; may be brownish gold in estuarien waters; huge scales; mouth large and points upward.
Where found: primarily INSHORE fish, although adult fish spawn OFFSHORE where the ribbon-like larval stage of the fish can be found.Size: most angler catchs 40 to 50 pounds. *Florida Record: 243 lbs.
Description: chin without barbels; copper bronze body, lighter shade in clear waters; one to many spots at base of tail (rarely no spots); mouth horizontal and openng downward; scales large. Where found: juveniles are an INSHORE fish, migrating out of the estuaries at about 30 inches (4 years) and joining the spawning population OFFSHORE.
Size: one of 27 inches weighs about 8 pounds. *Florida Record: 51 lbs., 8 ozs.
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Sea Trout

 

Bonefish

Description: color gray, dark or iridescent blue above, shading to silvery sides, in dark waters showing golden tints around breast; small permit have teeth on tongue (none on pompano); no scutes; dorsal fin insertion directly above that of the anal fin; 17 to 21 soft anal rays.
Where found: OFFSHORE on wrecks and debris, INSHORE on grass flats, sand flats, and in channels; most abundant in south Florida, with smaller specimens from every coastal county. 
Size: 
common to 25 pounds. *Florida Record: 51 lbs., 8 ozs.
Description: dark gray or green above, with sky blue tinges shading to silvery and white below; numerous distinct round black spots on back, extending to the dorsal fins and tail; black margin on posterior of tail; no barbels; no scales on the soft dorsal fin; one or two prominent canine teeth usually present at tip of upper jaw.
Where found: INSHORE and/or NEARSHORE over grass, sand and sandy bottoms; move into slow-moving or still, deep waters in cold weather. Size: common to 4 pounds on west coast, larger on east coast. *Florida Record: 15 lbs., 6 ozs.
Description: silvery color with bluish or greenish back; slender, round body; snout long, conical, aiming downward and overhanging lower jaw; dark streaks between scales on upper half of body and faint crossbands extending down to lateral line; extremities of dorsal and caudal fins shaded with black. Similar Fish: ladyfish, Elops saurus
Where found: primarily INSHORE fish inhabiting shallows of the Florida Keys; found in shallows often less than 1 foot deep, usually over lush grass flats, occasionally over white sand. Size: 3 to 5 pounds. *Florida Record: 15 lbs., 6 ozs.

Jack

Black Drum


Grouper
Description: color bluish-green to greenish-gold back and silvery or yellowish belly; soft dorsal and anal fins almost identical in size; prominent black spot on operculum (gill cover); black spot at the base of each pectoral fin; no scales on throat.
Where found: common in both INSHORE waters and the open sea.
Size: usually 3 to 5 pounds. *Florida Record: 51 lbs
Description: high arched back; 10 to 14 pairs of chin barbels; gray or black colored body in adults; young have 4 to 6 vertical bars; has cobblestone-like teeth capable of crushing oysters; scales large.
Where found: INSHORE fish common to bays and lagoons; bottom dweller often found around oyster beds; also OFFSHORE. 
Size
: common to 30 pounds. *Florida Record: 93 lbs.
Description: olive or gray body coloration with black blotches and brassy spots; gently rounded preopercle. Similar Fish: gag M. microlepis; yellowfin grouper, M. venenosa.
Where found: OFFSHORE species; adults associated with rocky bottoms, reef, and drop off walls in water over 60 feet deep; young may occur INSHORE in shallow water.
Size: common to 40 pounds, may attain weights exceeding 100 pounds.

Salt Water Fishing

Saltwater License
A Florida saltwater fishing license is required to fish in saltwater or to possess saltwater species.

Bait
Bait is not included in bag limits. Saltwater bait: shrimp, minnows, pilchards, pinfish, mullet, mojarras (shad), or ballyhoo. Bait may be taken with hook and line, dip net (not wider than 3 feet / 0.9 m), and cast net.

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Manatee Etiquette
Areas frequented by manatees have been posted. Keep an eye out for manatees. Slow to an idle if observed, but do not approach or molest.

Lobster and Queen Conch
The taking and possession of lobster and queen conch is prohibited.

Recreational Crabbing
Stone crabs, during open state season, and blue crabs may be taken by recreational fishermen using attended gear (for example: star trap, baited line, landing net, etc.). Crabbers are limited to five (5) traps. Unattended gear, including traps, is prohibited.

Shrimp
Shrimp may be taken by dip net (not wider than 3 feet / 0.9 m) or cast net, personal use only, not for sale. 

Fishing Regulations in the Everglades

All commercial fishing is prohibited in Everglades National Park.

Prohibited Recreational Fishing Gear
Except for dip nets, cast nets, and landing nets, all other seines and nets are prohibited. The use and possession of spear guns and spear poles are prohibited.

Fresh Water Fishing
Freshwater License
A Florida freshwater fishing license is required to fish in freshwater or to possess fresh water species.
Bait- Live or dead fish (including minnows and shiners) or amphibians, and non-preserved fish eggs or roe, are prohibited. Digging for bait inside the park is not permitted.

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Areas Closed to Fishing
No fishing is allowed at the Ernest Coe Visitor Center lakes, Taylor Slough, Royal Palm Visitor Center area and trails, Chekika Lake and along the Shark Valley Tram Road.

Everglades Fishing 


Fishing abounds in the Everglades. The unique combination of year-round warm water, brackish rivers and backcountry bays, mangroves, oyster bars, estuaries, forage, and moving water, makes Southwest Florida one of the leading fisheries in the World. The nearshore bays, shallow flats and mangrove shorelines provides endless possibilities to hook into a trophy Tarpon, Snook, or Redfish. Everglades fishing is very diverse, from the shallow back country grass flats, to the outside islands and canal systems. The Everglades National Park has a large selection of fish species. With 1.4 million acres in the Park alone, everglades fishing is very unique. In the same fishing charter, it is possible to catch bass in the freshwater, snook in the backcountry, tarpon in the rivers, redfish on the beaches as well as trout on the flats.

Endangered Species in Everglades National Park

An endangered species is a species of plant or animal that, throughout all or a significant portion of its range, is in danger of extinction. Everglades National Park is, or was at one time, home to fifteen endangered species. 

 

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American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus)
Green turtle (Chelonia mydas)
Atlantic Ridley turtle (Lepidochelys kempi)
Atlantic hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)
Atlantic leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea)
Cape Sable seaside sparrow (Ammodramus maritima mirabilis)
Snail (Everglades) kite (Rostrhamus sociabilis plumbeus)
Wood stork (Mycteria americana)
West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus)
Florida panther (Felis concolor coryi)
Key Largo wood rat (Neotoma floridana smalli)
Key Largo cotton mouse (Peromyscus gossypinus allapaticola)
Red-cockaded woodpecker (Picoides borealis)
Schaus swallowtail butterfly (Papilio aristodemus ponceanus)
Garber’s Spurge (Chamaesyce garberi)