Flats and shallows are cooler during the day than they were during the heat of summer, and this increases the presence and activity of game fish like spotted sea trout, redfish, flounder, Spanish mackerel, and bluefish. From mid-June through mid-September, water temperatures of turtle grass flats and oyster reefs hover around 90F, and game fish tend to use these shallows most during early morning, evening, and at night.
Annual fall migration of fish including pompano, Spanish mackerel, and big tarpon. The small Spanish mackerel of the spring migration have grown substantially, and fall is the best time of year to catch big ones.
Spotted Sea trout are the most abundant inshore game fish in Florida waters, and are immensely popular with anglers. Sea trout are found on turtle grass flats in the bays of Pensacola, Destiny/Fort Walton Beach, Panama City, and Port St. Joe.
Farther east near Annabelle, La nark Village, and St. Marks, sea trout are found over inshore reefs and rock piles, and on structure in sections of rivers affected by saltwater tides, like the Annabelle, Ochlockonee, and St. Marks rivers. Redfish are the iconic inshore game fish of the northern Gulf, and are popular with anglers because of the wide range of habitat they use.
Keep in mind that waters with rock reefs and oyster bars tend to have many navigational hazards that can damage your boat. Fly-fishing in the shallow waters near cord grass is one of the great techniques for catching redfish.
Flounder, spotted sea trout, and redfish, are the three most popular game fish in FloridaPanhandle inshore waters. If you’re taking a guided fishing trip in any of the bays, these three species will factor prominently in your day’s catch.
Like the redfish, the appeal of flounder is their broad distribution, including flats, bridges and similar structures, backwaters, and beaches. At first glance, you might think of flounder as a slow and awkward fish because of its body shape, but they’re surprisingly fast and voracious.
Tarpon are popular game fish during summer on the Panhandle, and during their fall southward migration that typically occurs in early October. I recently enjoyed a successful day of tarpon fishing with Captain Trey Landry of Port St. Joe.
We were near Indian Pass, fishing with seven inches menhaden on circle hooks as bait during spectacular feeding frenzy conditions. Pompano are outstanding game fish that are very strong for their size, and they are one of the world’s great seafood delicacies.
These attributes drive some anglers to nearly specialize in fishing for them, and developing networks of friends who share information about where the pompano are biting on a given day. A shrimp, crab, or sand flea fished near the bottom is effective bait for many surf species including pompano, whiting, flounder, redfish, and black drum.
Check out this sailfish we caught off of Grafton Beach Florida With a history largely built upon the famous fruitful waters, Destiny is known as the “World's The Luckiest Fishing Village.” Destiny features the widest variety of catches in the Florida Gulf with 20 species of edible game fish.
Led by a professionally trained and licensed crew, your Destiny fishing adventure aboard SWOOP I and II includes fishing tackle, license, bait, ice and even a few choice secrets locals have used to catch record-breaking snapper, cobra, amber jack, grouper and more. The mates will be happy to bait your hook, remove fish from your line and put them on ice, unless, you wish to release them.
Depending on the time of year a minimum of 15-20 people am needed for a trip to depart. Notice must be provided within 24 hours by phone or the credit card will be charged for the full trip.
Destiny fishing has never been more affordable with rates starting at $60 per adult and $50 per child. Named the “#1 Place in the United States for Boating” by Boating Magazine, along with being globally-recognized as “The World’s Luckiest Fishing Village”, boasting the largest North American fleet, Destiny, Florida is home to an underwater world of aquatic wildlife and...
The Destiny Cobra Tournament presented by Arboreal Marina is a month-long event that attracts hundreds of anglers from Northwest Florida. The 100 Fathom (600' depth) curve of the Gulf of Mexico draws closer to Destiny than any other spot in Florida.
The Franklin Inn is another pet-friendly property that offers 30 rooms with an option of a king or two queen size beds. In 1942, Camp Gordon Johnston opened in Annabelle for the sole purpose of training Infantry Divisions and their support units in amphibious operations by U. S. Army Engineer Special Brigades .
Three infantry divisions and two special brigades left the camp after receiving amphibious training to confront tyranny both in Europe and the Pacific. Ships, mainly schooners, would come through and pass and drop anchor behind Dog Island in Ballast Cove.
The cove got its name because ships would drop their ballast before sailing into Annabelle to pick up their cargo. From the town’s railroad station, trains carried salted mullet and other goods to the north.
If you’re looking for a truly unforgettable angling adventure, book a charter with one of Annabelle’s experienced fishing guides. There’s also the restored Crooked River Lighthouse, listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
For nearly a century, the Crooked River Lighthouse stood as a guiding light for ships and fishermen navigating the treacherous pass between Dog and St. George Islands. In the early 1960s, Annabelle’s police phone was located in a call box bolted to a building at the corner of Hwy.
These grass flats are loaded with a myriad of marine life, including shrimp, redfish, trout and grouper. It is estimated that 90 percent of the grouper in the region’s offshore waters grow out of these St. George Sound grass flats.
The river flows into St. George Sound in Apalachicola Bay and ultimately empties into the Gulf of Mexico. If you prefer offshore fishing, Annabelle offers easy access to the Gulf of Mexico.
The Forgotten Coast is home to 50 artificial reefs, located offshore from the Franklin County coastline. Annabelle is home to an array of experienced captains who can take you out on a guided offshore fishing charter.
There are lots of excellent places to eat in Annabelle, from waterfront oyster dives to family-friendly diners. Check out Marine Street Grill or Fathoms Steam Room & Raw Bar for fresh, local seafood, burgers, sandwiches and more.
The Fisherman’s Wife also specializes in local seafood dishes in addition to burger baskets, sandwiches, quesadillas, wraps and more. This adorable 1950s-style diner serves up hand-dipped ice cream, coffee, espresso, cappuccino, loaded bagels and made to order salads, soups and sandwiches.
Try the daily specials at Lulu’s Café, including home baked muffins and pastries, sandwiches and soups, all made from scratch. The water clarity on Annabelle Beach varies depending on the season, tides and weather conditions.
Because it is protected by Dog Island from heavy winds and seas, the water is usually calm on Annabelle Beach. Laura Tie is the Marine Science Sea Grant Agent with the University of Florida Extension Service in Okaloosa and Walton Counties.
Raised in Sioux City, Iowa, she left the cornfields of the Midwest to pursue her dream of becoming a marine biologist, following in... Read more It's autumn and images of red, brown, and yellow leaves falling on the forest floor near orange pumpkins enter our minds.
But as you might have noticed, there is one species that reliably turns shades of red, orange, yellow and sometimes purple, it also unfortunately happens to be one of the most significant pests... Read more We don’t always have to look closely or work hard to find beauty in our surroundings.
While a well-tended landscape can certainly enhance the aesthetics of an area, there are plenty of places to find naturally attractive plants. Read more This bio of our friend She Embanks was prepared by Dr. Pete Ergot; Northwest District Extension Director.