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Tag Archives: fishing

Species spotlight: Spotted Seatrout

FOLLOW THE FISH  Capt. Pete Rapps Spotted Seatrout are widely known as Speckled trout, Specs, Trout or Spotted Weakfish. Spotted Sea-trout are a common estuarine fish found in the southern coasts of the United States along the south Atlantic and all coastal areas of the Gulf of Mexico. Contrary to its name “Spotted Sea-trout”, they actually are not a member of the Trout family at all, however, they are a member of the drum family (Sciaenidae). Adults can reach 19-25 inches in length and 1-4 pounds in weight, however they are most common in our area up to 21 ... Read More »

Are you smarter than a Stone Crab?

By Val Simon  Fortunately, there wasn’t a quiz at the end of the “Are you smarter than a stone crab?” program. The educational program was fun, informative and tasty too, thanks to Rookery Bay, the local Sea Grant Extension agent-Bryan Fluech and Grimm’s Stone Crab Company. The program offered an in-depth look at the Stone Crab claw industry and its economic impact on the State of Florida. The program started off at the Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and ended in Everglades City at the Grimm’s plant. Bryan led a class of about 20 through a comprehensive look ... Read More »

Goodland festivities

GOODLAND LIFE  Natalie Strom As a former Buzzard Queen at Stan’s annual Mullet Festival, I feel as though it is my duty to inform the uninformed about this one-of-a-kind event. Not to be outdone, the annual Goodland Boat Parade is approaching fast on the Mullet Festival’s heels. Don’t forget about the Goodland Civic Association’s Pancake Breakfasts and the Goodland Garage Sale that are also just around the corner. Let me start by explaining the Mullet Festival, now in its 28th year. No… it has nothing to do with the “business in the front/party in the back” haircut but it has ... Read More »

Sea Life… as it is!

ALL THAT GLITTERS Richard Alan I mentioned in my last article that going back to basics just wasn’t working in this economy. But here on Marco Island or Southwest Florida, for that matter, the love of basic sea life jewelry hasn’t wavered. (No pun intended.) The love of the ocean is why people flock here. Those who visit for the first time are amazed by the beauty of the beaches and the joy of living life by the shore. Personally, I was astounded by the abundant fish and wildlife that the Ten Thousand Islands offer. My first years here were ... Read More »

February fishing in the 10,000 Islands

FOLLOW THE FISH Capt. Pete Rapps As January passes, we shall see some small changes in fishing. We were lucky not to be hit with many cold fronts in January. Hopefully the mild winter temperatures continue and the coldest temperatures of the winter will now be behind us. Water temperatures will continue to hover in the low 60’s. Morning air temperatures should average in the low 50’s, and warm up into the mid 70’s by the afternoon. Keep an eye on your tide charts because we have some extremely low tides around the next full and new moons. More specifically, ... Read More »

SWFL Nature Festival takes flight

By Coastal Breeze News Staff  The 8th Annual Southwest Florida Nature Festival will take place January 13th to the 15th. The event, hosted by Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Center will feature numerous events, expeditions and speakers that will hi-light the unique ecosystem that is Southwest Florida. Beginning on Friday and running through Sunday, the center will host field trips at 20 different locations. Some of these trips include birding walks, turtle walks, canoe and kayak excursions, swamp buggy tours and more. These field trips take place all over Collier County and a few are even in Lee County. Some ... Read More »


Follow the Fish Capt. Pete Rapps The common snook (Centropomus undecimalis) are the most widely distributed species within the Centropomus genus, and have been reported as far north as New York (USA) and throughout the Gulf of Mexico. Common snook are abundant along the Atlantic coast of Florida from Cape Canaveral south through the Keys and Dry Tortugas, and north to Cedar Key on the gulf coast. Common snook occur infrequently along the coast of Texas to Galveston and then more or less continuously south to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Here in the 10,000 Islands, Snook are greatly sought ... Read More »

He dreamed a dream boat

By Capt. Carl Kelly “Some boats can handle a chop. Some boats can run skinny. Some boats can’t do either. We like to think our boat can do both.” Ralph Brown spoke of the boats his company, Dream Boats Global, will produce. His brother, Bob, will be an integral part of the company. But Brown wasn’t selling his boats so much as he was selling his company. He was meeting at Marco Island Yacht Club with a small group of potential stock holders. Dream Boats is a new company that will build and sell a line of boats based on ... Read More »

Cub Scouts earn badges thanks to Marco Sportfishing Club

By Coastal Breeze News Staff Six members of the Marco Sportfishing Club held a fishing clinic for Marco Island Cub Scout Pack 234. About 20 Cub Scouts and many of their parents were at the meeting and they had a great time learning about fishing, being a good angler and other things they need to know to earn their merit badges. Four “learning areas” were set up, and the Cub Scouts and their parents spent about 10 – 15 minutes at each area before they moved on to the next one. After about an hour, they had been to every ... Read More »

Species spotlight: Redfish

Capt. Pete Rapps Another species of fish that we catch all year round here in the 10,000 islands is the Redfish. Its true name is Red Drum, however, most in our area refer to the fish as Redfish or just “Reds”. Its Latin name is Sciaenops Ocellatus, and it is closely related to the Black Drum or the Pogonias Cromis. Redfish are classified as Drums because they make a deep drumming noise. Several times I have come upon large schools of Redfish that you could actually hear making a deep bass drumming noise in the water around the boat. ... Read More »

Nine nearby natural worlds

Nancy Richie Marco Island is surrounded by a richness of unique natural worlds to explore and enjoy with family and friends. All are a relatively short drive off the Island and can be experienced in any degree – from a day trip to an overnight to many days of camping. By foot or watercraft, get to know the “real” Florida in Marco Island’s own backyard. Here is a list of nine “must-experience” southwest Florida sites. For more information, the phone number and website address has been provided for each. ROOKERY BAY NATIONAL ESTUARINE RESEARCH RESERVE 239-417-6310 and  A prime example ... Read More »

Annual Recognition Breakfast

Conservancy of Southwest Florida Honors Members at Annual Recognition Breakfast December 8, 2011 (Naples, FL) Over 200 Conservancy of Southwest Florida members attended the Annual Recognition Breakfast in November in Naples. The annual event honors and recognizes those Conservancy members who have provided long term support for ongoing Conservancy initiatives and programs. At the event, Conservancy of Southwest Florida Nature Center Supervisor Kelly Sowers updated the members on the progress and features of the future Conservancy Nature Center, scheduled to open early 2012.  Conservancy Wildlife Specialist Jonee Miller highlighted the wildlife rehabilitation efforts throughout the past year that are supported ... Read More »

Holiday Season in Goodland

By Natalie Strom The holidays are here! And Goodland is preparing for the season in many ways. Thanksgiving was celebrated in usual fashion: traditional turkey dinners were shared all over town. With Christmas now just around the corner, locals are looking forward to getting crafty, feeling jolly and decorating their Christmas trees. On December 3rd and 4th, Goodland will host its annual Christmas Bazaar. The event will be held at the new Goodland Boat Ramp Park from 10AM to 3PM both days. Goodland is home to many talented artists who will feature their arts and crafts at this event. Some ... Read More »

December Fishing in the 10,000 Islands

By Capt. Pete Rapps December is here and with it comes some big changes to the fishery in the Everglades National Park. Some good and some not so good. We typically have our first major cold front hit us after the middle of the month. We already had a few minor cold fronts come through in November, but nothing too extreme like last November. Expect Gulf water temperatures to drop down into the mid 60’s later in the month. In December it is super important to keep a watchful eye on the tide charts. We have some more crazy low tides ... Read More »

Monthly Beach Clean-Ups – Keeping It Clean For Everyone!

Have you noticed how nice the Marco Island beach looks? This is largely due to the monthly beach clean-ups organized by the City of Marco Island’s Beach Advisory Committee (BAC) and its chairman, Publix Manager, Kevin Donlan. He and BAC member and Marco Island Civic Association (MICA) board member, Bernardo Bezos, who volunteers the MICA beach vehicle, and other BAC members, are on the beach once a month with a sponsoring local business. The amount of trash collected and removed from the beach and dunes really has made a difference for all beach-goers! At the last BAC beach clean-up, a ... Read More »

Festival and fun in the Everglades

Patricia Huff  Lots of things to do this weekend in the Everglades area! On Saturday, November 19, two events will keep you busy. The traditional Fall Festival will be held at the Chokoloskee Church of God beginning at 9:00AM until 4:00PM. A fish fry plate lunch will be served and this year the festival will feature pony rides, plant sales, games for children, an auction, sweet sale, yard sale and clothing, plant sale, cake walk and car wash. Then, just down the street at the end of Mamie Street at the Smallwood Store & Museum, Pamela Fernandez will have a ... Read More »

Species Spotlight: Sheepshead

Capt. Pete Rapps Fall is here in the 10,000 Islands and with cooler water temperatures and the change of seasons, comes the migration of the Sheepshead fish. These fish begin to arrive in big numbers about this time each year to spawn. They inhabit many of our near shore structures, oyster bars, and the deeper mangrove pockets in the back county river mouths. In addition to being called Sheepshead, they are sometimes referred to as the convict fish, Seabream Sheepshead, and Southern Sheepshead. They are distributed in the western Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, with the densest populations ... Read More »


Frances Diebler We arrived at last. No more movement up and down or side to side. We were securely tied up at a dock in order to prepare the boat for when we go back to the states for a visit with our family for a few months. We had to prepare Grendel so she could be hauled out and put “on the hard,” as it is called, while we are away. That means out of the water and onto the land. We removed the Genoa sail, staysail, and all other venerable equipment which was on deck and stored it ... Read More »

November means fantastic Fall fishing in the 10,000 Islands

Capt. Pete Rapps   I always look forward to November because it is one of my absolute favorite months here in the 10,000 Islands! The reasons are numerous and I could probably go on forever describing them, but some of the highlights are…. 1) The weather patterns are typically mild with little rain and light winds, 2) Many fish are following and feeding on the huge bait pods just off the near coastal beaches, 3) The daytime temperatures are comfortably hovering in the high 70’s to low 80’s, 4) Many migratory birds are actively arriving for the winter……. and the list ... Read More »

Big Jim Bass Lake

District 5 Commissioner Jim Coletta, Vice Chair, is pleased to announce that the 90-acre Big Jim Bass Lake, located in his district east of Immokalee Road and north of Oil Well Road, is that much closer to being accessible to public fishing thanks to a gift to Collier County of an adjacent canal this month. “Big Jim Lake offers a perfect setting for anglers. It’s a passion of mine to bring to the residents another recreational option. I have been working on this vision for several years. To see it actually get traction and move forward in a positive direction ... Read More »