Fishing in the “Tarpon Capital of the World”

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Tarpon fishing in Sanibel usually “jumps off” around mid-April, as tarpon prefer water temperatures between 72-82 degrees Fahrenheit. However, Port Sanibel Marina fishing guides have already reported multiple catches this month! The first tarpon to ever be caught was actually caught right here on Sanibel Island in 1885 by Chicago architect William H. Wood with bait and a thumb stall reel. This fish’s strength, stamina and fighting ability is why it is known as one of Florida’s premier game fish.

The “Silver King”

Due to its majestic appearance, size and color, the tarpon is known as the “silver king.” Tarpon swim in the shallow coastal waters, estuaries, open marine waters, coral reefs and sometimes, freshwater lakes and rivers. When their habitat doesn’t provide enough oxygen, tarpon have a special ability to gulp air at the surface.

Reaching up to 8 feet in length and 280 in weight, tarpon have zero food value and can ONLY be fished recreationally in Florida. Because of this state regulation, most tarpon are fished using catch-and-release. For those anglers who want to keep their catch for trophy purposes must pay a $50.00 fee per tag, per fish. Without a tag, possession is illegal.

Knowledge Makes the Difference in Catching these Fish

If you are interested in planning your next fishing trip in Sanibel, check out our private boat rentals and group fishing charters. For the best rod-and-reel experience, we do suggest boarding a Port Sanibel Marina fishing charter. All seven of our fishing guides spend 12 hour shifts out on the water and maintain the BEST knowledge of local float patterns, active fishing spots, and water temperatures. They are constantly sharing their insight with each other regarding where to catch the best fish. Get reeling and schedule your next fishing charter by calling (239) 437-1660!