Tarpon Fishing in Southwest Florida
The southwest region extends from Charlotte Harbor in the north to the famous Ten Thousand Islands in the south. It encompasses Charlotte, Lee, and Collier Counties. People come to this part of the state, one of the fastest growing areas in the country, for its favorable climate, abundance of natural areas, wildlife watching opportunities and, of course, because of the region’s legacy as a Tarpon fishing mecca. Tarpon are just one of the many trophy sized sport fish available here, and most of the Boca Grande fishing charters can help you land the trophy fish of your dreams.
Growing to lengths of more than eight feet and weighing more than 280 pounds, it is easy to see why the tarpon is one of the most sought after saltwater gamefish in the world. Its habitat is close to the shoreline so fishermen of all types and skill levels can catch them.
This remarkably fine creature is a primitive animal and has the distinction of being the only fish with an air bladder. This allows it to absorb oxygen and live in waters with very low oxygen content. You can see them gulp air at the water surface. Tarpon are also called poons, tarpum, sabalo real, cuffum, silverfish or silver king and belong to the bony fish family Elopidae. Their Latin designation is Megalops atlanticus.
Roaming these waters are four of the state’s most sought after gamefish, the Snook, Redfish, Spotted Seatrout, and of course the giant Tarpon. Thousands of anglers come to southwest Florida each year for the chance at a grand slam, catching one individual of each species in one day. Both offshore charters that consist of day trips, as well as night fishing trips are available through any one of the many Boca Grande fishing charters available in the area.
Perhaps the most significant factor contributing to the region’s excellent fishing reputation are the vast tracks of fresh and salt water wetlands protected by state and/or federal laws. The Charlotte Harbor – Pine Island Sound area, one of the largest estuaries in Florida, has extremely clean water that supports extensive grass beds and stands of mangroves. Several large sections of this estuarine complex are designated as state aquatic preserves and there are strict regulations that protect the water quality and marine life in the system