NW Florida Fish


Shore fishing on the Northwest Florida Coast is a wonderful thing to do. Dave is compiling some fun facts about fish you can catch, the seasons they run, where to catch em, what tastes good and why Sculpin Jigs work so well. Read what Dave has to say about Pompano, Redfish, Atlantic Croaker, Cobia, Flounder and bait.

 
POMPANO are members of the Jack family. Pompano are considered to be one of the best eating fish, and are the mildest of the Jack family. I've caught probably six species of this family. 

Amberjack is another member which is highly regarded on the menu, but sometimes it can be a little on the strong side. The only other jack I would consider eating is the yellow jack. I caught some in the Florida keys, and they were quite good. I was fishing on a charter boat for snapper a few years ago when I caught a fish the captain called a rock salmon. I knew it was in the Jack family, but the captain said it was fine eating fish. When I got home I looked it up in my book, and identified as a Almanco Jack. I cooked it on the grill, but the flavor was too strong for me.
 
Another common jack caught on the panhandle is the JACK CREVELLE.
 
I have also caught blue runners and bar jacks. The permit is another fish with looks a lot like the pompano, but gets a lot larger. The Florida game laws put both pompano and permit together under the same regulations, because they are hard to tell apart when both are small.
 
It's always best to check the current laws for size regulations.

 


We catch our share of black drum on the Emerald Coast. Not good to eat but a good fighter.


And of course the redfish is common here on the coast. But be careful what you keep. The big one's go back.

 
FLOUNDER, with it's delicate, mild flavor, is one of the best eating fish.
 
There are two species of flounder in our waters: the gulf flounder and the southern flounder. The gulf flounder, found in, you guessed it, the Gulf of Mexico usually doesn't get bigger than 15 inches. The southern flounder getw up to 27 inches. It moves into the gulf in late fall to spawn. It moves back into the bays and inland waters in the spring.
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