Grouper and Snapper fishing also known as "Bottom Fishing" is an excellent way to fill coolers with fish and freezers with bags of filets. It typically requires a bare minimum of 6 hours for a beginner or "introduction to bottom fishing" trip. Families and Groups will typically progress to longer 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 hour deep sea missions over the years. If your starting fishing level is "High" or you are an experienced fishing group, you will probably want to start with our 9 hour charter, it is our most highly reviewed trip on TRIPADVISOR.com. Dozens of our regular clients who regularly visit Southwest Florida over the years, have climbed the ladder of progression to longer and more adventurous deeper water trips. The farther you travel out into the Gulf of Mexico Offshore or Deep Sea of the Islands of Sanibel, Captiva, Cape Coral, Pine Island and Fort Myers Beach; the wilder and more pristine the environment becomes. Simply put and obviously this means a larger average fish size and a greater amount of fish caught.
We Do Not Ever Kill Any of the Sharks we Catch, but we do sometimes take DNA samples for Scientific Research Partners and then Revive and Release the Magnificent Creatures
Nurse Sharks are super strong, methodical with a slow steady power stroke (more like a dump truck than a race car). Nurse Sharks can be caught both inside the Islands of Sanibel and Captiva, in the shallow bay waters known as Pine Island Sound or Offshore of the Islands while Deep Sea Fishing. Often times the sharks are subdued with a tail rope, this allows the Captain to secure them from both the hook and tail at the same time. Tail roping is the best techniques to insure the hook can be safely removed without harming the fish.
Typically the American Red Snapper caught offshore of Sanibel, Captiva, Fort Myers Beach and Pine Island are a really nice size!
KIDS love Sharks, it is easy to see why because Sharks are fascinating animals. More importantly we truly love to teach Kids about fishing, and shark fishing is a fun and exciting way to teach youngsters about the Ocean. Sanibel and Captiva Islands are well known as fun family fishing destinations and we have safely taken thousands of families fishing over the years, many of these trips have been for smaller Bay Sharks. Sometimes while targeting the smaller fun size species of sharks inside the Islands of Sanibel, Captiva, Fort Myers Beach, Saint James City, Pine Island and North Captiva, we will hook up with significantly larger size sharks, in that case Mom and Dad will be called to step up and fight the larger fish!
BLACKTIP SHARK are probably the most common species that we target with young anglers around the Islands of Sanibel and Captiva.
AMERICAN RED SNAPPER are super fun to catch because they are very aggressive and typically range in size from five to twenty five pounds.
Spring and Summer are the best seasons to catch Monster Size Sharks, but we do catch them during every month of the Year.
LEMON SHARK are awesome to behold, they are probably the most flexible bodied of all the sharks in the waters surrounding Southwest Florida. Lemon Shark's can easily bite their own tail, even at 10 feet long they remain very flexible and always very ill tempered when alongside the boat.
Deep Sea Fishing offshore of Southwest Florida is typically non stop action and fun for all ages. It is the reason our charter service has become the activity Families and Kids look forward to for their Vacation to Florida.
KING MACKEREL are Super Fun to Catch! They run hard and fast repeatedly. The waters deep sea of Sanibel Island and Captiva are teeming with Kings at certain times of the year.
RED GROUPER are delicious and encountered year round on virtually every Deep Sea Fishing Charter that goes out Offshore of Pine Island, Sanibel, Captiva, Cape Coral, Fort Myers and Fort Myers Beach.
TIGER SHARK CAUGHT OFFSHORE DEEP SEA FISHING CAPE CORAL.
The following is an in depth discussion of the various Fish and Wildlife commonly encountered on our charters.
RED GROUPER are some of the most common fish we catch while Deep Sea Fishing offshore of Sanibel, Captiva, North Captiva, Pine Island, Saint James City, Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach and Cape Coral. The size of the Red Grouper you catch is usually a matter of how deep you fish, 9 and 10 hour trips typically will catch quite a few bigger Red Grouper.
The Gulf of Mexico is generally thought of as "Shallow" compared to the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans respectively.
In most areas to the West of Pine Island, Sanibel and Captiva Islands and Southwest of Fort Myers Beach, Saint James City and Cape Coral, fishing depths are between 40 and 160 feet deep. The depth range is ideal for both Grouper and Snapper habitat.
Most Grouper habitat is low lying limestone rock with coral and live growth attached, Snapper also co-habitate this "Live Bottom" as its called locally.
SNOOK are one of the Worlds premier Game Fish. Pound for Pound stronger and harder to land than most fish in the Inshore / Bay waters
Catching A Ton Of Snapper is actually pretty easy when you go Deep Sea Fishing offshore of Sanibel, Captiva, Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, Saint James City and Pine Island. Picture here are Mangrove Snapper, Vermillion Snapper and Lane Snapper, which are all Delicious!
Typically we will Fish for Grouper and Snapper while we wait for Giant Sharks to Bite!
Barracuda Fishing Charters are often the highlight of Families visit to Southwest Florida.
SMALL TOOTH SAWFISH
BULL SHARK are one of the strongest fish you can encounter, they have the most testosterone of any animal on the Planet! The super high levels of testosterone and their nasty attitude make them an extremely tough fish to fight on rod and reel. Bull Shark can be caught inside the Islands of Sanibel and Captiva near the shores of Cape Coral, as well as offshore while Deep Sea Fishing. Bull Shark can be caught year round in Southwest Florida, day or night, and even in the cold of Winter as they follow the Mullet run in December and January, but Spring and Summer are more reliable times of year to target the Bull Shark.
Barracuda are fun to catch because they Fight Hard and are kinda Scary Too!
HAMMERHEAD SHARKS are also appropriate and fun for Kids when they are smaller in size. Southwest Florida is home to a few different types of Hammerhead Sharks, including; the Great Hammerhead, the Scalloped Hammerhead, and the Bonnethead.
We take special pleasure in teaching Families and Groups to progress as fishermen as the trips and years go by and have watched many kids (and adults too), develop and master the fundamental skills required to be awesome fishermen. Grouper and Snapper provide one of the most rewarding types or styles of fishing to further this learning process because each individual aboard gets many dozens of opportunities at catching in a rapid and organized manner. Snapper are fast biting and will bite a few at a time, what this means is that you are feeling two or a half dozen fish attack your baits simultaneously! It is awesome and can really get to be a frenzied experience given good tide and moon conditions.
FAMILY FUN Deep Sea Fishing Charters are our Specialty
Smalltooth Sawfish are a unique fish native to Southwest Florida and can be caught in the shallow bays surrounding Sanibel, Captiva, Cape Coral and Fort Myers Beach.
AMERICAN RED SNAPPER are probably the best eating fish in the Gulf of Mexico and also one of the most fun to catch! Typically Red Snapper season opens the first or second week of June and runs until mid July or early August. The shortest Red Snapper trip is typically 10 hours but a majority of Red Snapper fishermen will book a 12 hour trip so they can fish as deep as possible for the Monster size American Red Snapper.
Lemon Shark are caught year round while fishing the waters surrounding Sanibel, Captiva, Fort Myers Beach, Pine Island and Cape Coral, but Spring and Summer are easily the best time to chase them during the daytime. In Winter it is best to focus on Night Fishing if you want to catch a few.
Click on the VIDEOS tab in the drop down menu at the top of this website to view awesome videos of these and other Awesome recent customer catches!
Bonnethead Shark are a small type of hammerhead that are also an appropriate type and size of shark to target when fishing with Kids. Typically we fish for smaller Sharks in the protected bay inside the Islands of Sanibel, Captiva and Pine Island.
Typically many larger Snook will be caught while fishing the backwaters of Pine Island Sound or the Caloosahatche River. We call the Snook encountered in this area "River Monsters".
REMORA or "SHARK SUCKERS"
Families probably do not associate 8-13 ft Tiger Sharks with a typical vacation activity, but you will after you fish aboard MISS HAYDEN! We have decades of local native born experience and are Southwest Florida's experts at TIGER SHARK FISHING.
NURSE SHARK caught on a DEEP SEA FISHING trip from CAPE CORAL.
TIGER SHARK CAUGHT OFFSHORE DEEP SEA FISHING FORT MYERS BEACH.
Ladies will typically out fish the Guys, because they generally listen to instructions well and learn new things faster!
SANDBAR SHARK are a schooling species of shark and often can be hooked / caught a few at a time if you put out multiple baits and are prepared for their bombardment. It is very difficult to successfully land more than one successfully because they are a very strong hard fighting species once hooked. Sandbar Sharks look similar to the more famous Bull Shark, but they are typically thinner in build and have elongated pectoral fins with a white edge and larger dorsal fin.
HAMMERHEADS will BITE ANYTHING CLOSE BY WHEN THEY ARE PISSED OFF!
Typical Snapper catches on our "beginner level" 6 hour Offshore Fishing Charters pictured below.
King Mackerel can reach over 60" in length and about 60 pounds in total weight, but a large one will typically weigh between 45 and 50 pounds
This SNOOK was caught Offshore of Pine Island while Deep Sea Fishing.
LARGE SNOOK can caught both Inshore and Offshore, but are more typically caught in the Bay. One interesting thing about Snook is the fact that they are "Protandric Hermaphrodites" which means the males can change sex and become females as required by the school in the area they frequent. Snook spawn from April - May to September - October and there are five different varieties / sub species of Snook in Florida waters.
REMORAS are a strange creature that are also known as "Shark Suckers" because they can attach themselves to larger marine creatures such as Sharks, Sea Turtles, Rays and Whales using an interesting suction cup organ on the top of their head.
Shark are one of the most common catches in the waters surrounding Sanibel Island, Captiva Island, Fort Myers Beach, Fort Myers, Saint James City, Pine Island and Cape Coral.
The best time of year to target Sharks on a Sanibel or Cape Coral Fishing Charter is during the warmer times of the year, Summer and Spring seasons specifically are excellent. Winter Shark Fishing can be difficult in the daytime, because many commonly encountered smaller shark will migrate south as temperatures cool off around October. Late October through early March the Shark fishing in the bay, inside of the Islands of Sanibel and Captiva can be slow, however the Shark fishing offshore, Deep Sea of our islands out in the Gulf of Mexico, can be fruitful even in Winter. The trick to finding good shark fishing during the colder months of the year is to target the species of sharks that tolerate cooler waters, Tiger Shark are one of these species and they can be caught all Winter, especially after dark on a Night Shark Fishing Charter. Tiger Sharks inhabit our waters year round, but there are significant migrations of them coming into our waters during Winter. The migrating Tigers are coming south from the relatively colder Northern Gulf of Mexico, for this reason November through March are typically excellent months to target migrating Tiger Sharks during both day and night time fishing charters.
Tiger Sharks are one of the largest sharks world wide and commonly reach 500-1400 pounds in our Southwest Florida waters. Length and girth vary by age but it is very typical to encounter specimens over 10 feet, and lengths up to about 13 feet is not uncommon. Individuals over 14 feet and as large as 18 feet, can be caught or hooked I should say because they usually won't be subdued or landed in a way that allows photography. You never know what you will lock into on any given day fishing and that always keeps it interesting.
The ATLANTIC SHARPNOSE SHARK is a common type of shark we encounter while fishing the bays inside the Islands of Sanibel, Captiva, Pine Island and Cape Coral. The Sharpnose Shark is super feisty and spirited when hooked, they make for a happy fisherman because they are also good to eat.
LIFE CHANGING FISHING EXPERIENCES!
Tiger Shark are one of the most powerful fish in the Gulf of Mexico, and can be caught offshore of Sanibel, Captiva, Cape Coral and Fort Myers Beach year round, even during Winter. In Spring and Summer you have peak Shark Season, during these warmer months the variety of different Shark species increases dramatically to include; Hammerhead, Bull Shark, Spinner Shark, Blacktip Shark, Lemon Shark, Sand Tiger, Nurse Shark, Atlantic Sharpnose Shark, Bonnethead Shark and the Sandbar Shark.