If you encounter a catfish ball, cast net the group for a quick source of chum base. It is abundant in warm waters off the coast of the US from the Chesapeake Bay south and through out the Gulf of Mexico. The Clearnosed Skate feeds on crustaceans, mollusks, sand fleas and fiddler crabs giving them excellent tasting flesh. Toss in their favorite baits?lively Pinfish and big, live Shrimp to chunk chum or make your chum from Shrimp and chumming at night is necessary. Most anglers hook up a Wahoo during heavy chumming while targeting other species. Next cast very softly into the school and retrieve your bait quickly. Most anglers catch Bonito while fishing for Kingfish; Bonito will hit on any bait if they are in the area. Use squid strips or cut bait dropped into your chum slick. Download preview Atlantic Ocean - Atlantic Ocean - Fisheries: The Atlantic’s major fishing grounds—representing more than half the world’s total—long were the most productive and most heavily utilized of all the oceans. Usually solitary, they can sometimes be found in small schools. They can be found near the Gulf Stream in deep water near underwater structures like rock walls and drop offs. The lane are more common in south Florida with the young found inshore and in the mangroves and the adults on inshore reefs. The average Tautog is 2 to 4 pounds but they have been recorded to 22 pounds. But not all saltwater fish are here year round. Glass minnows are sometimes called Silversides or Anchovy and are a popular bait fish from Maine through the Gulf of Mexico. The Black Marlin is found in Pacific waters on the surface near shore close to land masses, islands and coral reefs. This catfish is abundant around bridges, and piers, particularly in passes and inland waterways and is edible, but generally not eaten. They live in colonies around 2 feet across and 10 feet long paralleling the beach. Eastern Atlantic: Mauritania to Angola. Flying fish also make great bait for kite fishing. Black Drum are bottom feeders that eat marine worms, shrimp, small crabs, small fish, crustaceans and mollusks, with a preference for blue crabs, shedder crabs, shrimp, oysters and squid. Photo Courtesy of Nicholls.edu, Ballyhoo is a popular bait fish for trolling or as cut bait. The lionfish flesh is very good to eat and the only precaution during preparation is to cut off the venomous spines, then prepare the fish as you would any other. Common bait used are blue crabs, pinfish, threadfin herring, mullet, grunts, and ladyfish. Us this fish as bait or cut up for chunk baiting. If you land one on your hook and do not have gloves or courage to deal with them, cut the line and send it back. This ray is one of the smallest stingray species, it attains a maximum length of 24 inches (61 cm) and a weight of 11 lb (4.9 kg). Reef Fish Florida Saltwater Fishing H Spearing Prohibited Must remain in whole condition (removal of gills and guts allowed). The Coney is a small, colorful Grouper that is found in the warm waters of southern Florida, mostly the Atlantic coast, usually hiding in holes on coral reefs waiting to ambush it's prey. Freshwater Sstripers feed almost exclusively on large shad and minnow species, so make your chum with these species. They have the same diet and habitat as the other Seatrout. Image Courtesy of Florida Sea Grant: The Graysby likes to hide in holes and ambush it's prey. The Rock Hind is commonly caught at around 9 pounds on coral reefs and hard bottoms from the Gulf to the Bahamas. Visit our Menhaden fish page for information on this very important species. Select from the fish species below to add recipes, comments, photos and more! Spanish Mackerel are aggressive feeders preferring shrimp, squid and small fish. The filefish is good eating but only the unicorn filefish is legal to harvest for consumption. This species is in serious decline due to overfishing so the restrictions are 1 Snowy per person per day (always check current rules). They live in burrows several feet deep. Image Courtesy of NOAA Photo Library. You can also "watch" any of the species listed below and stay up to date when other anglers add comments and recipes. The Snowy feeds on blue crab, fish, and squid. Use heavy gear and 8/0 to 11/0 hooks with lights (to attract them) and balloons attached to detect a bite. Marine worms are an important food source for birds, fish, and invertebrates. Eastern Atlantic: Mauritania to Angola. Two species of Indo-Pacific lionfish (Pterois volitans and P. miles) are the first reported non-native marine fish to become established in the Atlantic Ocean. Lionfish are excellent ambush hunters, with lightning speed they capture their prey. All Rights Reserved. Closeup of the face of a sea bream, popular fish specie from the atlantic ocean. In Florida, Spanish Sardine is purchased frozen, the fish in this picture is from such a box. Highly migratory, the Rainbow travels in large schools feeding on small fish, shrimp and crabs. Bottom fishing from bridges, piers, the surf and from boats is the best way to catch a Kingfish. Sardines can be cast netted and Pinfish trapped for line bait or live chumming. Use 80 pound line with a 100 pound leader with short shanked 9/0 hooks baited with fresh chunk bait. This fish migrates seasonally, spending the winters in southern Florida waters then migrating north to spawn and spend the summers in the Panhandle or the Carolina's on the east coast. NOAA Fisheries is working to rebuild this population. For more information visit Anglers Trash Sushi Grade Tuna. The shinny Atlantic Needlefish is very common and can be found inshore hovering around pilings. The Scamp is plentiful in the Gulf of Mexico and can be found in the Atlantic mostly on the northern Florida coast. Where there is an abundance of small Pilchards, Ballyhoo, and Herring you will find the Mutton Snapper. This fish seldom reaches over 3 to 4 inches and is abundant in large schools along the shore in seagrass beds and on offshore reefs. A closeup of the face of a sea bream, popular fish specie from the atlantic. They come ashore to freshwater inlets and rivers to spawn. They are excellent table fair. Speckled seatrout inshore action in the winter months throughout the state is a lot of fun with the average sized catch at 4 pounds. Photo Courtesy of MBARA, picture taken off Mexico Beach on MB-124, Ladyfish can be found in great numbers in bays, lurking just outside of dock lights at night, feeding on bait fish and shrimp. Common Carp with a dough bait Pilchards must be kept in an uncrowded, well aerated tank with constant water changes, they do not keep as well as other bait fish like pinfish but do make great bait. Atlantic bonito eat mackerel, menhaden, alewives, silversides, sand lance, and other fishes, as well as squid. Normally found on deep water offshore wrecks, this species of Jack is not encountered as often as Amberjacks. Yellowtail Snapper are found mostly in the southern Florida waters offshore near reefs and wrecks in waters deeper than 30 feet. Florida's largest Flounder can be found in inshore coaster waters sitting on the bottom, preferring eelgrass beds and wharf pilings. A schooling species, it's often found in company with schools of Spanish Mackerel or Jacks, feeding on the same small fry as the larger fish. Chumming for this deep water fish is not possible, but how about trying a line bait dispenser attached above your live or cut bait presentation. The Swordfish feed on squid, fish and crustaceans. Downriggers are often used to get the chum below the surface to entice this powerful fish. America Go Fishing, Inc., owner of FloridaGoFishing.com and the FloridaGoFishing trademark, assumes NO liability or responsibility for any errors or omissions in the information contained here. Mojorra are common bait fish found on both coasts of Florida in schools, mostly inshore. Fish Identification: Find Species. The Grey Triggerfish feeds on shrimp, crabs, sea urchins, sand dollars, sea stars, sea cucumbers, and bivalve mollusks. The most popular destinations for recreational scallopers are Steinhatchee, Crystal River and Homosassa. The Grey Triggerfish will carefully nibble your bait with their sharp teeth leaving your with an empty hook! Be careful when reeling in a weakfish it gets it's name from having a weak mouth, hooks tear apart their mouths. Range: Western Indian Ocean: Red Sea to the Persian Gulf Synonyms: sohal tang, sohal surgeonfish; Aetobatus narinari Spotted eagle ray Range: Western Atlantic: North Carolina (summer) and Florida, USA and Bermuda to southern Brazil. Mostly a solitary fish, you may sometimes find them in small groups in bays and inlets around structure. Find the Wenchman in deep waters, from 80 feet to 1,200 feet deep over hard, low-relief bottoms, but they can be found on almost any bottom type except soft mud. Pacific, reef. These beautiful fish are caught way offshore in the Atlantic ocean and are incredible fish to catch. In some parts you will encounter catfish balls near docks making it impossible to catch anything but these cats. The blue runner is a spunky fish prized as an excellent bait fish because it survive long periods in the bait well and once on a hook can swim great distances. They are common in southern coastal waters. The Ballyhoo can grow to 16 inches, but are commonly 12 inches. Reef Fish Florida Saltwater Fishing H Spearing Prohibited Must remain in whole condition (removal of gills and guts allowed). Use gloves and watch out for the tip of the spine. Silver Perch grow to 12 inches and are similar in appearance to the Sand Seatrout with a silvery skin and yellow fins. The goal is for the stingray bait to appear to be swimming. They are fun and easy to catch and make fantastic chum or chunk chum. Tripletail feed on smaller fish, shrimp and crabs and are very good table fare. The Jolthead is distinguished with a blue line under it's eyes and orange around it's mouth. The Cero Mackerel is usually caught at 10 pounds but can get to 30 pounds. Clams are bivalves that live in the sand at the waterline, the bottom of bays or on the ocean floor. The Spanish can be found close to shore and further out in waters to about 40 feet, traveling in schools. Image courtesy of NOAA Photo Library - photo taken Gulf of Mexico. These crabs are primarily vegetarians, preferring leaves, fruits, berries, flowers and vegetables. The Atlantic Croaker is one of the most abundant fishes and can be found in shallow water areas both in the ocean and in larger bay. They can sometimes be found in small schools, but they mostly are solitary swimmers several feet below the surface not far from land in tropical and subtropical waters. Pictures submitted by Maureen Jan 2015. Striped bass usually grow to approximately 20 inches and weigh about 30 pounds, but can be as long as 6 feet and weigh as much as 125 pounds. Sea Trout feed on squid, peeler crabs, shrimp, live spot or other live bait, so a chum mix of their favorite food is best. You can buy a Sand Flea Rake on our Store Bait Catching page. Lookdown's are most often found in small schools near the coast in shallow waters over sandy bottoms, usually near bridges, pilings and on coastal shipwrecks. They are a sought after species for sports fishing but make terrible table fare, so catch n' release is the game with this fish. Home | Sitemap | Locations | Fishing | Boating | GPS | Tips | Photos | News | Shop | Contact | Privacy. The Yellowmouth Grouper is a reef dweller that is very abundant in the Gulf of Mexico. 22 lb. This fish grows to 30 inches and 12 pounds, has a compressed body with distinct vertical stripes, and has no teeth on the roof of it's mouth. Visit BlueCrab.info for details on identification, trapping and details on making a your own crab trap. Like the octopus, it emit's an inky substance when threatened and it has the ability to change it's color to blend in with its environment. Captain Charlene Burke of About Fun Charters showing off the "black flag" on the dorsal of a Spanish Mackerel. Saltwater Fish Species - South Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico & the Caribbean. White Marlin can be found in very deep water, usually 300 to 500 feet down. Image courtesy of Bouncers Dusky 33 - Miami Beach, The Pigfish inhabits bays and muddy coastal waters in northern and southern coastal waters. They prefer squid, crab, shrimp, lobster and octopus, but will eat any dead fish that sink into their habitat. The Dog snapper is not picky and will go after any kind of bait or jig. The Gafftopsail grows 12 to 21 inches and can weigh up to 2 pounds. Reefs with large numbers of predators, like Atlantic goliath groupers, are known to be healthier than reefs with no predators, so this species may represent an important part of the reef food web. Permit are commonly found from 20 to 30 pounds with the record in Florida at 51 pounds. The best bait is live ballyhoo and pilchards. Lives in fresh water and estuaries and only leaves these habitats to enter the Atlantic Ocean to start its spawning migration to the Sargasso Sea. Red Drums are primarily an inshore fish found throughout Florida and can reach 45 inches and weigh 51 pounds. Photo Courtesy of MBARA, picture taken off Mexico Beach. You can also catch them with tiny hooks and small bits of cut bait or shrimp; Sibiki Rigs work well too. They also consume significant quantities of lobsters, clams, small mussels, sea worms, squid, eels, and soft crabs, which you can also use for your chum mix. ><((((*> Copyright @ 2011- Snook are drawn to the night lights as they take the opportunity to feed on shrimp that are drawn to the lights. This small fish is tasty but mostly used as bait for Tarpon or Grouper. In order to keep a Yellowfin Tuna you must have a Highly Migratory Species Permit. Small live and cut baits can be used to catch this Grouper. It is standard bottom-fishing fare, however, offshore of the Atlantic Coast from about the center of the Peninsula northward, and in deep waters of the northern Gulf. The Red Porgy is an uncommon catch due to it's reduced populations from earlier overfishing.