Fishing, Bait & Tackle

The waters of the Gulf of Mexico, off of Sanibel and Captiva Islands, boast more than 1,000 species of fish.  Here you’ll find a range of fish from yellow fin tuna to the deep water tilefish.  More than 20 artificial reefs around Sanibel and Captiva Islands attract great schools of fish.  The newest was created in July 2012 by sinking a 165-foot World War II cutter, the USS Mohawk, 28 nautical miles off Sanibel Island shores.  

Whether fishing from shore, offshore, back country or deep sea, fishing areas are plentiful all months of the year.  Cast your line:

Offshore for: Grouper, Snapper, or Tarpon may be as close as two miles away or as far as 30 miles from land.

Back Country for: Snook, Redfish and Sea Trout.

Wade Fishing for: Pompano, Whiting, and Flounder to name a few.

Fish Chart
The possession of saltwater fish, shellfish and crabs is regulated. Federal, state and local laws may apply for certain areas and seasons. New rules are pending. Tackle shops will provide current rules. The information on this chart is for Catch and Release.

Black Drum Bay, rivers Bottom Spring, Fall Crabs, cut bait
Blue Crab Canals, grass, flats, pier Traps, nets Spring, Summer, Fall Fish, chicken
Cobia Gulf, bay Bottom/top, trolling Spring, Summer Live/cut bait, lures
Flounder Gulf, bay, creeks Bottom Summer, Fall Shrimp, minnows, lures
Grouper Offshore (large); Inshore (small) Bottom, trolling All year Live/cut bait, jigs, chum
King Mackerel Offshore Trolling, drifting Spring, Fall Jigs, spoons, live bait, chum
Mackerel Gulf, bays Trolling, drifting All year Small jigs, spoons, live bait
Mangrove Snapper Bay, creeks Bottom All year Lures, shrimp, minnows
Permit Gulf Casting Summer Crabs, shrimp
Pompano Bay, inshore Bottom Spring, Summer Shrimp, sand fleas, small jigs
Redfish Inshore, bay, creeks, grass flats Trolling, casting All year Shrimp, lures, minnows, crabs
Sheepshead Gulf, bay, creeks Bottom Winter, Spring Shrimp, fiddler crabs, sand fleas
Snook Inshore, structure, creeks Bottom, trolling, casting All year Shrimp, minnows, lures, cut bait
Tarpon Gulf, bay, rivers Bottom, casting Spring, Summer Cut bait, lures, live bait, chum
Tripletail Gulf, bay, structure Surface, bottom/top Spring, Fall Live bait, jigs
Trout Creeks, grass flats Drifting, wading All year Jigs, live bait, lures


Beachcombers, Boaters and Fishermen alike can view at the Tide Charts at

Bait and Tackle shops are conveniently located on Sanibel Island.

  • The Bait Box, 1041 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel, FL 33957  Phone: 239.472.1246
  • Whitney’s Bait & Tackle, 1554 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel, FL 33957 Phone: 239.579.0399

Whatever your speed, you can enjoy world-class fishing around Sanibel and Captiva Islands.




Sign up for updates!

Logo and ‘Sandalfoot’ are Service Marks of:
Sandalfoot Condominium Association, Inc.