Fishing in October? Cooling Waters Heat Up The Big Bend Inshore Bite

I was pleasantly surprised last Sunday when Steinhatchee Capt. Rick Davidson told me he’d been reading water temperatures in the 70s all day. The day was cool and there were pods of bait everywhere, but I didn’t think that the temps had dropped that much in the past few weeks. That’s a good sign, and …

Warmer Water and Air Temperatures Drive Snook North Into Florida’s Nature Coast

Snook are one of Florida’s most popular gamefish Traditionally, in years past, West Florida’s snook population remained south of our Natural North Florida waters.  That was largely due to cold winters, which either run snook into warm residential canals on the upper suncoast, or kill them outright.  However, winters over the last ten or twelve …

Boat? What Boat? Try Wade-Fishing on Florida’s Taylor and Dixie County Coastlines

  Redfish are a common catch for anglers wading the Big Bend   I guess I’m guilty of assuming that everyone who fishes on the Big Bend has a boat.   I’m hardly an elitist, but consider myself lucky to have had access to, or ownership of, a boat for the last 50 years. However, I’ve …

Spotted Seatrout–A Big Bend Favorite (To Catch and To Eat)!

Fall is here and all those undersized spotted seatrout that Big Bend anglers have been catching and releasing since last spring have grown up.  Now, they’re mostly all in the 15 to 20-inch slot (you can keep one over 20-inches) and there should be no problem catching dinner as the waters on the Big Bend …

Florida’s Big Bend 2016 Recreational Scallop Season Ends–With A Bang!

Five of the seven counties that make up the official Florida bay scallop harvest are in Natural North Florida–Levy, Dixie, Taylor, Jefferson and Wakulla.  And what a year 2016 has been!  The harvest started in June, and quick boat limits (see www.myfwc.com/fishing for regulations) were taken.  And even after Hurricane Hermine slammed the coast over …

Natural North Florida Overcomes Hurricane Hermine

Hurricane Hermine comes ashore on Florida’s Big Bend, September 1, 2016 with minimal hurricane force winds. We’re a tough, resilient bunch in Natural North Florida.  When Hurricane Hermine hit just east of St. Marks in Wakulla and Jefferson counties on September 1, 2016 it had been a full decade since we’d had a similar event.  …

Fall Fishing on Natural North Florida’s Big Bend Flats

  The term, ‘flats’, means lots of things to lots of different anglers. Bonefishers love to sight fish over stretches of shin-deep, pure white sand or marl. Tarpon enthusiasts often find their prey on ‘flats’ that are six to eight feet deep, and everyone knows that redfish prefer shallows where the rough, rocky bottom holds …

Two More Reasons Natural North Florida’s Big Bend Coastline is Pristine

There are two reasons that the Big Bend’s Gulf waters are so well-preserved, both thanks to the folks at the University of Florida’s Nature Coast Biological Station and the area’s friend and Sea Grant Agent, Dr. Savanna Barry. In recent months, Dr. Barry realized two of her goals that are of importance to anglers and …

There’s Still One More Week to Catch A Winning Redfish in the 2016 CCA STAR Tournament

See this redfish?  It’s one of 8 I helped release in Taylor and Dixie Counties at the beginning of the 2016 CCA Star Tournament.  And until yesterday (8/27) none of those 8 had been caught.  However, last night one was caught by an angler near Pepperfish Keys in Dixie County.  Great news, huh?  Yes, that’s …

Redfish Turn Red in Tannic Creeks After Big Rains

If you’ve ever wondered why redfish (red drum) are red, head to a Gulf-facing coastal creek just after a big rainstorm.  On Florida’s Big Bend, big summer storms often bring multiple inches of rain.  It usually backs up into the swamps and filters through the coastal swamps to the Gulf, bringing significant amounts of tannin …