Gulf Shores Alabama

Gulf Shores Fishing Reports

Read about Mullet - Click Here

Current Marine Forecast
Current Fishing Limits
Current Record Catches
Current Tide Charts

Regulations (Limits) concerning all fishing and harvesting of seafood in the Gulf and Alabama waters.

Book Hotels for Fishing Trips at Discount

Nice video from Captain Troy's Distraction Charters

Current Fishing Report from nearby Pensacola

Past Monthly Fishing Reports from
Captain Walter McNeil

Captain Walter McNeil is providing fishing reports for us 

APRIL-2008 The fishing in March and April has been fantastic. Most of the fish that have been coming to the dock are sheephead. If you are not familiar with sheephead then let me tell you they are very underrated. They fight hard on light tackle, are close to shore, and taste very good. The bite should be hot through the end of April. There is no bag limit but we self-impose a 5 fish per person limit to protect the resource. The bull redfish should start moving in on Dixie bar in late April and early May and stay until the fall. Some Spanish mackerel are showing up on the beaches as well as some king mackerel offshore. The offshore bottom fishing is good with a lot of red snapper being released and some other types of snapper being kept for the skillet. On the 8 hour trips we have been catching lots of amberjacks with only a few being big enough to keep but very fun to catch. The cobia are starting to show up on the beach as well. If y'all have any questions about fishing or the area in general call (251)213-0023.
Good Fishing and Be Safe, Capt. Walter McNeil
4 and 8 hour fishing trips and 1 1/2 hour dolphin and sightseeing tours.
Read Past Reports Here                Wanna see SOME FISH !! Look at recent photos !

Captain Joe Garris can take you out on The Dottiejo, a 30 ft.Island Hopper, Only 2 miles from the Gulf of Mexico. Dolphin Cruises available for private trips. Specializes in teaching parents & children the fun of fishing    See his Dolphin Watch Boat Trip Movie
Home Phone---251- 968- 6488   Cell Phone---251- 213- 6680

February 2008--Alright, first things first red snapper season is going to open up on June 1st (not in May as I reported last time) with the same bag limits as last year, 2 per person not counting the captain and crew. Also the Red Snapper World Championship will be held towards the end of the season. Now let's get to the fishing report. The weather has kept us at the dock a lot this winter but the times we have been able to get out we have done well. The trolling for redfish has been good and the sheepshead have been starting to show up but are still somewhat unpredictable, that should change pretty quick. The redfish should start biting around the Dixie Bar in March. The cobia should start showing up towards the end of March and only get better through May. Cobia migrate from south Florida up through the gulf coast and are a highly targeted species. They swim just under the surface while fishermen spot them and cast to them. The fish range from 30 to 100 pounds and can be alone or in a pod as big as 20 fish . It's very exciting and the fillets are hard to beat. The offshore fishing has been good as well with lots of snapper to be released and some amberjack, grouper, and triggerfish for the frying pan. The weather has been warming up and looks to be a very productive spring and summer, so call and book your trip (251)213-0023. 
Be Safe and Good Fishing,
Capt. Walter Mcneil 

December 2007: Well the weather has been cooling down but the inshore fishing is staying hot. The Redfish are cruising just off the beach. If you can find the birds diving and fish busting the surface there is a good chance it is a school of Redfish. The White Trout are still biting in the bay and some Sheepshead are showing up around structures close to the beach. 

The offshore fishing is as good as it gets right now with the exception of Red Snapper. The Snapper fishing is good but you have to release them due to the closed season. 2008 Snapper Season will open up in May and they should be very thick and easy to catch.  The target fish now are Trigger Fish, Grouper, Vermillion Snapper, and Amberjacks. There are still some King Mackerel hanging around some of the artificial reefs and rigs off Fort Morgan. Don't forget The Red Snapper World Championship will be held when Snapper Season opens in 2008. 

We were out fishing for triggerfish on Dec.  10th and hooked into a Mako Shark about 12 ft long. The fight lasted about 2 minutes until it jumped completely out of the water right beside the boat and broke the line. Talk about an adrenalin rush ! Just remember if you have any questions about fishing the area in general, or would like to book a fishing trip, 
please call (251) 213-0023. 


--Read our local expert, Dr. Skip's newspaper popular columns !

Read about Alabama Crabs !
Read How the Age of Fish is Determined !



Local Charter Fishing Trips from Marinas--the Big List

Read about Mullet, the local staple

The early spring is prime mullet fishing season. After spring break, the mullet fish migrate out into the Gulf to spawn in large schools. The do this usually on the full moon or just as a cold front is passing through. We on the Gulf Coast eat Mullet fried, smoked, baked and in gumbo. Mullet scraps are used in crab traps and as bait for other fish like red bulls in the fall.

We even have a mullet festival down here where large quantities of beer are consumed and dead fish are tossed across the state line.

There are two species of mullet in the northern Gulf of Mexico. The most common one here is the striped or black mullet. Officially called "Mugil curema". The other species is the silver mullet. Our mullet form large schools during the fall in the outlet end of streams and rivers before they migrate offshore to spawn.  The large schools migrate up to 100 miles offshore. There they release eggs and sperm in great mass. The fertilized eggs float and are washed in by the tide. Eggs that are not fertilized will sink and become food for the sealife.

According to Dr.Skip Lazauski, a large female striped mullet can produce over 4 million eggs per spawn. After this offshore activity, most mullet return to their point of origin.

Mullet can eat small algae and decaying plant matter. Mullet are food for birds, other fish, sharks, and dolphins. They are found in a wide range of habitats and can live in both saltwater and brackish water.

Striped mullet are commercially fished with gillnets during the spawning run in the fall more for their eggs than their meat. The harvested roe is for the Asian market. The rest of the year, striped mullet are fished commercially for their meat. Silver mullet, smaller than striped mullet, are said to be sweeter than the striped and are fished recreationally most of the year. Silver mullet are sensitive to the cold and dieouts can occur if winter temps are down to the high 20's or low 30's for several days in a row. Mullet can be raised on fish farms, but in the states, the cost is higher than catching wild fish due to the cost of labor according to Dr. Lazauski the biologist who writes a great weekly column for the local newspaper, The Islander..


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"Fishing the Local Waters...Gulf Shores to Panama City" is the book you want to order if you are headed here to fish.

Click to Order

In The Barefoot Fisherman Guide To The Emerald Coast, Gregory Dew reveals forty very special spots to fish along the Gulf Shores, Alabama, to Apalachicola, Florida. Also included for the angler is a wealth of sound advice on rigging an outfit, basic angling techniques, special fishing techniques, picking a prime location (considering tides, currents, wind, water, and geography), fish species and habitats, even local recipes! The Barefoot Fisherman Guide To The Emerald Coast is enhanced further with a chapter dedicated to resource websites, addresses, telephone numbers, tackle shops, and selected fishing charters. If you are planning a fishing trip anywhere along this spectacular Gulf of Mexico shoreline, begin with browsing through Gregory Dew's The Barefoot Fisherman Guide To The Emerald Coast!
Sport Fish of the Gulf of Mexico

This book is an excellent reference guide for identifing gulf and bay fishes, and contains very little "how-to" information. Fish are separated into families. Each fish has a detailed color illustration, common name(s), and scientific name, plus a short description of each of the following categories: physical description, range, habitat, typical sizes, food value, game quality, typical tackle and bait, and a very short description of typical fishing methods. 185 fish are pictured in all, including sharks, stingrays, baitfish, and a number of other fish that may be encountered even though they are not normally thought of as sportfish.

The Pelican Guide to the Florida Panhandle

One reviewer said:

I had no idea that the Florida Panhandle had so much to offer. This author definitely knows the territory - I felt like I got all kinds of inside tips on where to go and what to do --- plus I couldn't find any other source of information specifically dedicated to the Panhandle.
With Alabama's Gulf Coast right on the same stretch of land, you know that much of the information here applies to us too !


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Congrats to the winners!

Little Warning Here:
State waters extend into the Gulf of Mexico three miles south of Alabama's coastline from Florida almost along a straight line due west along the Ft. Morgan peninsula and Dauphin Island to Mississippi. The line, however, curves southward three miles from Sand Island. A rule of thumb when leaving Mobile Bay: if you are south of Farewell Buoy , you are in federal waters. Mississippi and Florida also require salt water fishing licenses. Florida's state waters extend nine miles south of the coastline. You can be fined for straying into another state's water with fish caught in Alabama or federal waters.

Approximately 1,200 sq. miles of dedicated artificial reef bottom beckon Alabama's off shore anglers. Some of the commonly caught reef fish include Red Snapper, Lane Snapper, Grouper, Atlantic Spadefish, Scamp, Triggerfish, Amberjack, & Barracuda.

One of the first fish to arrive off our coast in the spring is the Spanish Mackerel, a popular spot and commercial fish.  In the early spring the Spanish mackerel migrate up the west coast of Florida.  The arrive off the Gulf Shores Alabama coast in March & early April.  They prefer the shallow shelf waters rather than the deeper parts of the Gulf.  Spanish mackerel spawn several times during the spring and summer near the shore. The commercial fishing of Spanish mackerel is done mainly with gill nets and is closely regulated. Recreational fishermen catch Spanish mackerel with silver spoons, jerk jiggers and live bait. They can be caught from both boats and the fishing pier at Gulf State Park between Gulf Shores and Orange Beach. If you catch one, better eat it fresh rather than freezing it as it is an oily fish and it is said they don't freeze well. Try them grilled outside with lemon and garlic.


Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources 

Outdoor Alabama
Official State Recreational Guide



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Wednesday July 20, 2016

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