Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report May 22, 2017

Most of the tarpon and snook action is in the sounds and along the beaches. The back country is still... 
Continue

Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report 05-15-17

We'll have east winds and water temps in the high 70s to low 80s. Perfect conditions for tarpon fishing on the...

05-15-17 Fishing Report - Capt. Dave Pecci
Continue

Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report 05-07-17

Watch for pods of tarpon a mile or more off the beaches early in the week.

05-07-17 Fishing Report - Capt. Dave Pecci

The cold front and northwest winds over the weekend moved the tarpon off the beaches and...

Continue

Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound Fishing Report April 24, 2017

There are a few tarpon and big snook on the beaches. More of them are showing up with each tide change.

Capt. Dave Pecci April 24th Fishing Report
The flats in Pine Island Sound are fishing better than the backcountry right now. Water temps are in the mid 70s and water clarity is good. Bait the fish are feeding on: Shrimp, crabs, pinfish, whitebait ...
Continue

Charlotte Harbor – Tarpon Report 04-22-2017

They're Here!

Did a cruises of Captiva, Cayo Costa, Boca Grande and Gasparilla the past two days... We saw our first pods of tarpon on the beaches just north... 

Continue

Tim and Lizzy Mitchell 02-19-17 Fishing from Boca Grande.

Tim ans Lizzy catching several different species during their two day adventure on Boca Grande. 

Continue

Jerry Crosses Tarpon off Bucket List

Jerry Jamison from Bath, Maine hooks and brings this nice tarpon boat-side using spin fishing gear and a live crab. Great Job Jerry!

The tarpon have returned to the beaches of Boca Grande, Captiva and Sanibel Islands after last week's back to back cold fonts pushed them offshore.

Continue

Jerry Jamison with his First Charlotte Harbor Tarpon

​Last week's back to back cold fronts are behind us. The tarpon have returned to the beaches of Boca Grande and Captiva. Jerry did a great job hooking and getting his 75 pound tarpon to the boat on a live crab. Click read more for additional pictures. Video coming soon.  

Continue

Charlotte Harbor, Boca Grande, Pine Island Sound May Fishing Forecast

Charlotte Harbor is Florida’s second largest estuary encompassing 270 square miles. Over 80% of its shoreline is preserved land. There are more than 15 boat ramps and many kayak access point on the Harbor providing easy access to great fishing.

 

May light tackle and fly action: May is all about tarpon. The spawning migration has started and there have a few tarpon being caught in the Sounds, Passes and along beaches the past two weeks. By mid-month the fishing will be in high gear. The back country waters are in the low to mid 80s so the best fishing will be early and late in the day. Mid-day will provide lots of lookers and refusals unless you’re pitching bait. The large snook are moving their way to the beaches and the sounds.

2015 05 18 bogue tarpon8sm

Conditions: We are settling into our early summer weather patterns with offshore winds early switching to sea breezes in the afternoons. Water temps will be in the low to mid 80s. April was very dry so the salinity in the lower harbor and the sounds are average or slightly above. The upper harbor fishing has slowed somewhat do the warm weather and lack of rain. Greatly reduced Lake Okeechobee discharges into the Caloosahatchee River has improved the water quality in lower Pine Island Sound.

Bait the fish are feeding on: shrimp, crabs, pinfish, ladyfish. Some whitebait in Matlacha Pass, upper Pine Island Sound, Gasparilla sound and on Bokeelia Shoals. There’s lots of threadfins and greeenbacks on the beaches.

May Fishing Tactics: The back country; with the warm and dry conditions fishing becomes an early morning game. Go early fish the moving water near the mangroves until the sun gets up. As soon as it gets bright shift you attention to deeper cuts between islands and keys and the depressions in the mangrove creek mouths. The deeper edges of grass flats will hold sea trout throughout May.

toadfly

My April Fly Fishing Tip: Many of my clients want to fly fishing for tarpon in May. I carry two set ups on the boat for them. A floating line with a suspending fly for the fish coming over the shallow bars and a sink tip line with a weighted fly for when the fish are laid up or doing daisy chains in deeper water. prespawn tarpon can be finicky, the fly placement is key. Many times they will only move a few inches to eat.

My April Light Tackle Tip: Don’t get in a rut using a particular tarpon bait. Crabs are wonderful bait but if you are getting refused show them something else. Pinfish, whitebait, cut ladyfish, sail cat tails, even shrimp can turn on the finickiest tarpon.

2016 04 14Piccone trout

 

Species to fish for this month: Tarpon, Snook Redfish, Spotted Seatrout.

Continue

Boca Grande Pass Tarpon Fishing - Why I don’t Partake

Many customers ask me if I guide for tarpon in Boca Grande Pass, I politely answer “no”. Then I go on to explain that I fish the miles and miles of beaches and, in the Sounds on both sides of Boca Pass but I do not participate in the fishery that takes place in the Pass. These two photos sum up the difference between what I do and what goes on in the Pass from mid-April through the end of June. I’ll take light tackle and fly fishing the 20 miles of beaches, Gasparilla Sound and Pine Island Sound over the parking lot that is the Pass thank you very much. Now, if you are interested in catching tarpon in the Pass I can give you some names of captains to contact. 

boca2
save the tarpon photo of Boca Grande Pass

2015 05 23tarpon6
A day on the Beach - Capt. Dave Pecci photo

Continue

Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report April 18, 2016

Last Week - Excellent fishing! We had tons of fly and light tackle fishing action last week. And, this coming week will be just as good! I posted some killer video from last week's action, you can check them out on my blog's Florida Fishing Video section. There's over 30 videos posted.

2016 04 14piccone jack5

This week's Forecast

Conditions: Excellent all this coming week - Mid day high tides will provide moving water. Morning low tides will congregate the fish along the oyster beds and grass banks.

Species to fish for this coming week: Snook, Redfish, Spotted Seatrout, Jack Crevalle, Tarpon, Ladyfish, Spanish Mackerel, Cobia.

2016 04 14Piccone trout

Bait the fish are feeding on: shrimp, crabs, pinfish, ladyfish, Scaled Sardines, Threadfin Herring

Fishing Tactics: Start early and fish the edges of oysters and grass for trout, snook and reds. As the tide comes in move onto the flats fishing the sand holes for trout and reds.

2016 04 14piccone jack6

My fly fishing tip of the week: Lots of white bait (sardines and herring) around so olive and white deceivers are the choice.

My spin fishing tip of the week: MirroLure suspending twitch baits are the lure of choice. 2nd choice would be a bubble gum or new penny soft bait on a ¼ once jig head.

2016 04 11 snook1

7 day outlook: Fantastic weather with light winds from the E and NE will provide excellent fishing. The snook, redfish and jack crevalle action will be very good this week.

2016 04 07 Kern jack5

 

Continue

SW Florida - Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report April 11, 2016

2016 04 07 Kern jack

Conditions: Great weather this week will provide awesome fishing. We’ll have smaller incoming tides so the fish in the back country will be scattered. There will be moving water near all the passes which will help congregate fish making those areas better choices. Good water quality and salinity throughout most of Charlotte Harbor. Lower Pine Island Sound and Punta Rassa water conditions continue to improve.

Species to fish for this week: Redfish, Spotted Seatrout, Bluefish, Jacks, Ladyfish, Snook, Spanish Mackerel. There’s a few tarpon and cobia around mid-Harbor structure and the deep holes.

2016 04 11 snook1

Bait the fish are feeding on: shrimp, crabs, pinfish, ladyfish. Some whitebait in Matlacha Pass, Gasparilla sound, Upper Pine Island sound and on Bokeelia Shoals.

Fishing Tactics: Early morning low tides will expose the oyster beds and leave little water on the grass flats. Work the edges of both. Spotted sea trout and reds will be cruising there waiting for the tide to come in.

My fly fishing tip of the week: Look for moving water and bait. That’s where the fish will be this week due to lack of tide and current in their normal ambush spots. White bait and shrimp patterns are working best. Keep that 12Wt. rigged and ready for Mr. Tarpon - there here.

2016 03 15 redfish stevens3

My spin fishing tip of the week: The suspending twitch baits are still the hot lure. Keep some bite wire handy – the jacks and Spanish mackerel will cut you off. Have a heavy rod rigged with 60# leader and a DOA Baitbuster for that tarpon that just might roll next to the boat, it’s that time of year.

7 day outlook: Seasonal temps, light winds and sunny most of the week, there’s a chance of showers on Friday. Small incoming tides all week won’t provide much moving water in the back country.

2016 tarpon roll


 

Continue

Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report March 15, 2016

2016-03-14-redfish

The fishing is excellent on Charlotte Harbor right now! Water temps have climbed into the high 70s and the redfish, snook and sea trout are all loving it. This 29" redfish was caught sight fishing in 15" of water on an oyster bed in Turtle Bay. Dick and Curt who are staying on Boca Grande also caught trout and snook on jigs and twitch baits. Even with the 10-15 knot winds its easy to find good light tackle and fly fishing in the backcountry. the last two weeks in March are going to provide some great fishing for sure! 

 

Continue

Help Loading the Boat

2016-03-10snegret2

It's always nice having help loading up after a charter. These pictures were taken at the Placida Park boat ramp near the Boca Grande Causeway.

A snowy egret on the poling platform ans a great egret standing by on the dock made sure all those pesky shrimp were gone from the livewell.

2016-03-10gtegret

Spring fishing has arrived in Charlotte Harbor. The snook are moving on the sand flats, spotted sea trout are on the grass beds. The water temps are rising. The water clarity has improved greatly.  

Continue

SW Florida - Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report February 8, 2016

2015-04-14greg1

Conditions: We will have extremely low morning tides this week. Water temps will be cool in the mornings but warm up in the afternoon. Pine Island Sound, Ding Darling, and areas around Sanibel and Captiva will have poor water quality due to the record level of discharges from Lake Okeechobee into the Caloosahatchee River. Even Matlacha Pass will see some water issues this week. The upper Harbor, East and West walls will provide better fishing opportunities.
Bait the fish are feeding on: Some whitebait in the upper harbor, pinfish, ladyfish, shrimp, crabs
Species to fish for this week: Snook, Redfish, Seatrout, Jacks, Ladyfish
Fishing Tactics: Typical winter tactics include taking advantage of extremely low water levels by fishing edges and structure. Cool water requires fishing slow and deep. As the water warms on the mud and grass you can speed your retrieves back up.
My fly fishing tip of the week: Slow presentations along the edges of oyster bards and banks with crab or shrimp patterns should produce this week. Use weighted flies or sinking intermediate lines to get down to the fish.     
My spin fishing tip of the week: Jig heads with soft plastic tail fished slow along edges and bars should work. Take advantage of this week’s super low tides by fishing structure and contours. 
7 day outlook: This week will be mostly dry with morning lows in the 50 warming into the 60s mid day. West – northwest winds will drop on Wednesday. There will be very large tide swings this week. Water temps will cool due to the nighttime lows. 

Continue

Pine Island, Boca Grande, Charlotte Harbor Fishing Report January 25th, 2016

Barb and I will be heading to Port Charlotte in a week or two. Thought I'd start my fishing reports now seeing that I'm checking the conditions daily. 

jack2-16x9

Conditions: Water temps will rebound this week. Winds will drop too. There will be mid day low tides with good moving water

Bait the fish are feeding on: some whitebait in the upper harbor, pinfish, ladyfish, shrimp, crabs

Species to fish for this week: Seatrout, Redfish, Jacks, Spanish, some Snook

Fishing Tactics: Cold water tactics – fish deep water and banks until the mid day warmth heats up the flats.

My fly fishing tip of the week: Cold water requires fishing slow and deep. Might need to swap to an intermediate or sinking line. Maybe even weighted flies for the holes and edges.             

My spin fishing tip of the week: Still fishing with bait and popping corks or slow retrieved jigs in deep water early then move to the grass flats as the water warms.

 

7 day outlook: A cold front move out Monday and the winds will drop and shift into the southeast. The weather change will bring a few showers. Temps will rebound to seasonal levels allowing the water to warm up.

This week's forecast:

Monday
Sunny, with a high near 70. Wind chill values as low as 35 early. East northeast wind around 5 mph becoming south southeast in the afternoon.
Monday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 52. Calm wind becoming east 5 to 7 mph in the evening.
Tuesday
Mostly sunny, with a high near 77. East wind 5 to 8 mph.
Tuesday Night
A 30 percent chance of showers after 8pm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 63. East wind around 5 mph. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.
Wednesday
A chance of showers, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after 8am. Cloudy, with a high near 72. Southeast wind 5 to 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.
Wednesday Night
Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm. Cloudy, with a low around 62. East wind 3 to 7 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.
Thursday
Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm. Cloudy, with a high near 69. Northeast wind 6 to 10 mph becoming west northwest in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 70%.
Thursday Night
Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm before 8pm, then a slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 50. Chance of precipitation is 60%.
Friday
A 20 percent chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 63.
Friday Night
Mostly clear, with a low around 46.
Saturday
Mostly sunny, with a high near 68
Continue

Summertime Tarpon and Snook Action Around Pine Island and Boca Grande

Charlotte Harbor / Pine Island Sound Fishing Report June1st, 2015

2015-05-18-bogue-tarpon8sm  2015-05-18-bogue-tarpon6sm

Conditions: Water temps have dropped a couple degrees with the showers and afternoon sea breezes. The back country fishing remains a bit slow, especially mid day. The beaches will be very active with tarpon and some big snook. Lots of skipjacks, greenback and threadfin herring on the beach. Some crabs in the passes.

Bait: Threadfin herring, greenback herring, ladyfish, skipjacks, crab

Species to target this week: Tarpon, Snook, Redfish

Fishing Tactics: Tarpon are cruising the beach in good numbers. Watch for rolling fish early and then sub surface pods from late morning on. The bite has only been for 20-30 minutes each tide so be persistent.

My Fly Fishing Tip of the Week: Change flies after refusals and ignores. Crab and small streamers patterns are getting the most looks.

My Spin Fishing Tip of the Week: Crabs seem to be the most effective bait or lure right now. Use slow steady retrieves.

 

7 day outlook: Light easterly morning winds with an afternoon sea breeze will provide great morning fishing. Watch out for those afternoon thunderstorms. Beach tarpon and snook action will be good. Small snook and redfish will be feeding early and late in the day in the back country.

Continue

Charlotte Harbor / Pine Island Sound Fishing Report May 25th, 2015

2015-05-18-tarpon1sm 

2015-05-23tarpon5

Conditions: Hot- Backcountry water temps from Matlacha to Gasparilla are now in the high 80s. The beaches from Boca Grande to Sanibel are in the mid 80s. Thunderstorms are common as the sea breeze builds in the afternoons. Higher water levels are putting the snook and redfish up under the mangroves for most of the day. The Tarpon are rolling early but are running deep as soon as the sun gets bright.

 Bait: threadfin herring, Green back Herring, pinfish, shrimp, crab

Species to target this week: Tarpon, Snook, Redfish

Fishing Tactics: Mid day fishing now is very slow due to the heat. So, it’s time to trade sight fishing for early and late day blind casting. Watch for nervous bait, muds and pushes along the mangroves. Tarpon will be moving through the passes early and late. Watch for cruising beach tarpon before and after slack tide.

My Fly Fishing Tip of the Week: If the tarpon fishing is slow, spend some time fishing the troughs along the surf line for BIG snook. Small to medium sized whitebait patterns seem to be getting the attracting the most action.

My Spin Fishing Tip of the Week: Sluggos and Hogys rigged weedless are the hot setup for the mangroves right now for snook and redfish. Live crabs are working best on the beach for tarpon.

 7 day outlook: Moderate easterly and northeasterly winds giving way to the sea breeze will build afternoon thunderstorms. There will be good water flow on the beaches and in the mangroves all week. The redfish and smaller snook will be active early and late in the day. Tarpon are in good numbers both on the beaches and in Pine Island Sound but will be running deep mid day.  

Continue

Fred’s Boca Grande Tarpon Odyssey.

Fred Bogue from New Jersey went 8-4-3 on tarpon this week. We were spin fishing off the beaches of Gasparilla, Boca Grande and Captiva. Safe travels home Fed, Great fishing with you again this year.

Big thanks to Sara for holding down the fort back home while some untimely home insurance repairs were being done during Fred’s tarpon odyssey. 

Continue

May Tarpon Fishing Charters in Charlotte Harbor / Boca Grande / Pine Island Sound

Tarpon have arrived in Charlotte Harbor/ Boca Grande / Pine Island Sound. The next six week will provide the best tarpon light tackle and fly fishing action in Florida. I have some open charter dates, call / text 207-841-1444 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. today for availablity.

Continue