Best Tuna Fishing Spots & Charters in Florida

When you think of Florida, the first thing that may come to mind is a warm, sunny vacation. In reality, Florida has lots of things to offer, including a variety of wildlife, a varied geography and much to explore. Fishing is one of the many outdoor activities that can be enjoyed in Florida, and there are a number of places that offer charters for fishing.

Florida is home to some of the best Tuna fishing in the world, and none of the fishing spots on our list are more popular than the ones we present here. With over 20 years of experience as  fishing guides in Florida, we’ve  also gathered a wealth of knowledge on the best places to go  to catch the most Tuna, while avoiding the dangers of overfishing.

If you’re looking for the best tuna fishing spots and charters in Florida, then look no further. With all the fishing spots covered in this guide, you won’t have to look elsewhere for great fishing.. Read more about tuna fishing near me and let us know what you think.

tuna in florida(Image courtesy of High Stakes Charters (Key West) & Fishing Booker)

Anglers will find some of the finest fishing locations in Florida, particularly if they are searching for tuna. Tuna is a saltwater fish, and Florida’s position allows for fishing in a variety of reefs, bays, rivers, the Gulf Stream, and other bodies of water, making it a better state for tuna fishing than others.

The following are some of the finest tuna fishing spots in Florida. In this post, you’ll learn about the greatest tuna fishing spots in Florida, as well as a few of the best fishing excursions for catching those tuna.

Florida’s Best Tuna Fishing Spots

The Florida Keys are #1.

The Florida Keys, off the coast of South Florida, are known as the state’s fishing center, attracting visitors and fishermen all year.

These islands are fantastic places to capture tuna. The fish eat here all year, but the best months for blackfin tuna are December to February. Because Blackfin is often used to create sushi in the Keys, it’s a tourist and fisherman favorite.

Tuna Fishing Charters in the Florida Keys that We Recommend

Stuart is number two. 

If you’re searching for Yellowfin, Blackfin, or Bonito, Stuart, on Florida’s Treasure Coast, is the place to go.

Yellowfin tuna are mostly accessible on the Gulfstream’s east coast from April through August. From March through August, blackfin tuna may be found along the coast of Stuart, Florida. Bonita is a subspecies with a huge population but is difficult to capture. Their availability is all year.

Stuart, Florida tuna fishing charters are highly recommended.

West Palm Beach is number three.

Palm Beach County includes West Palm Beach. It has many natural reserves and beaches, making it an angler’s paradise.

Within ten miles of town, West Palm Beach has direct access to the Gulf Stream as well as a variety of fishing excursions. Blackfin tuna is plentiful throughout the year, but particularly in the spring and summer.

West Palm Beach, FL tuna fishing charters are highly recommended.

4. Destin

Destin, Florida, is known as the “World’s Luckiest Fishing Village” because of its popularity as a saltwater fishing destination. Through the Gulf of Mexico, you’ll have direct access to 2,500 quadrillion gallons of seawater.

Yellowfin tuna is the most common species in the region. The ideal time to come is during the annual Destin Fishing Rodeo, which takes place in October. Many fishermen compete for cash and prizes over the course of a month.

Tuna Fishing Charters in Destin, Florida

Cocoa Beach is number five.

Disney is just a short drive away from Cocoa Beach. If you’re an angler traveling or residing in Orlando, you’ll want to stop here since it’s one of the finest fishing locations in the city, particularly for Blackfin and Yellowfin tuna. 

The months of July and August are ideal for fishing at Cocoa Beach. Meanwhile, in December and January, the catch slows a little.

Cocoa Beach, FL Tuna Fishing Charters are highly recommended.

6. Miami

Miami, in the southern part of the state, is one of the biggest cities in Florida. It is not only one of the state’s most popular and heavily inhabited cities, but it also boasts beaches that offer direct access to the Gulf Stream, making it ideal for hunting blackfin, skipjack, and yellowfin tuna.

Blackfin tuna may be found in Miami throughout the year, although the best times to capture them are in the spring and summer.

Tuna Fishing Charters in Miami, FL are highly recommended.

Tuna fishing in Florida (Gulf Coast vs. Atlantic Coast vs. Keys)

Fishing for tuna and other pelagic species occurs quite close to the beach along the Atlantic Coast. This makes the region particularly useful for fishermen who don’t want to go far from shore to capture fish, particularly novices.

The Gulf Coast, on the other hand, requires more travel and is better suited to deep-sea bottom fishing. Tuna, on the other hand, seldom go so deep, therefore the Atlantic coast is better for tuna fishing.

The Keys are renowned as the world’s fishing capital because of their outstanding fishing locations. It, like the Atlantic Coast, offers a plethora of tourist destinations dedicated to tuna fishing that do not need considerable travel. Overall, the Atlantic Coast and the Keys are the finest places to go tuna fishing.

Florida’s Tuna Species

Skipjack tuna is a kind of tuna that is found in

Skipjack Tuna is the smallest and most widely accessible tuna subspecies, weighing between 2 and 15 pounds. Their life expectancy is between 8 and 10 years. Year-round, they may be found in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans. However, the months of May through August are the ideal for looking for them. Trolling is the most effective method for capturing Skipjacks.

Tuna (Blackfin)

The dark blue band across their backs and silver bellies distinguish Blackfin Tuna. They usually weigh between 20 and 35 pounds. They have a five-year lifespan on average.

They live in the Western Atlantic and, because of their migratory habits, may be difficult to see for most of the year. The best time to see them is during their annual migration in the spring. They’re also tough to trap once they’ve been found, because to the incredible speed they’ve evolved to escape being caught and devoured by predators.

Trolling, live-baiting, chunking, and vertical jigging are the most effective methods for capturing blackfish.

Tuna (Yellowfin)

Yellowfin tuna have yellow sides, blue backs, and silver bellies and are torpedo-shaped. Their anal and dorsal fins are likewise vividly colored yellow. They can grow up to 7 feet long and weigh 450 pounds.

They may be found in the oceans of the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic. From May through August, for example, you should search for them in the Gulf of Mexico. Meanwhile, they’re accessible in the Gulf of Guinea from October to March.

You’ll want to utilize chum with live bait or cut bait pieces to capture these tuna.

Bonito

While bonito fish are related to tuna, they are not legally tuna in many countries. Because of their taste, they’re regarded one-of-a-kind. The taste is abrasive, and it has an oily feel, leading some to think it is poisonous. These fish, on the other hand, are completely safe to consume.

They have a range that stretches from Chile to the Gulf of Alaska. These fish are extremely aggressive and will battle you to the death. They’re also oval-shaped to help them swim, making them a little more difficult to capture. However, if you want to give it a go, trolling, line fishing, and utilizing a fishing rod are the finest options.

Frozen bait is an essential suggestion for catching these fish. Pilchards and sardines are the finest choices.

When is the best time to fish for tuna in Florida?

Tuna fishing has a lengthy season because the fish’s warm blood enables them to escape inactivity when temperatures drop too low. There are different fishing seasons in each state. The greatest months for tuna fishing in Florida, for example, are May through September. 

While an average range exists, each species has its own optimum time period:

  • May through August: Skipjack
  • During their spring migration, blackfin tunas
  • May through August: Yellowfin tuna
  • Bonito season is from late spring to early summer.

tuna fishing(Image courtesy of Nauti Tails Fishing Charter (Big Pine Key) & Fishing Booker)

When is the best time to fish for tuna in Florida?

Tuna like low-light environments. As a result, fishing early in the morning or late in the afternoon is a great strategy to improve your tuna capture chances. If these times are not convenient for you, you may go while the weather is overcast, which will decrease the amount of sunshine. These suggestions may be used at any time of year.

Tuna Seasons & Regulations in Florida

While the recreational element of tuna fishing is important, it’s also important to follow any fishing-related laws and regulations in your state.

The number of Blackfin tuna you may catch is limited to two per person per day or ten per vessel, according to Florida regulations. So you’ll have to go with whatever number is higher. There is, however, no minimum size requirement.

Other species, on the other hand, have no written regulations. As a result, these species are often referred to as “unregulated species,” but this does not imply that capturing them is completely free of rules.

According to Florida law, every aquatic species with no specific rules and restrictions has a recreational catch limit of more than 100 pounds or two fish, whichever is greater. If you want to capture more than the legal limit, you’ll need to get a commercial license.

4 Florida Tuna Fishing Tips

1. Look for Buildings

Although the fish themselves do not live in buildings, they feed on aquatic animals that do. Keep an eye out for reefs, floating grasses, ledges, and other structures that may provide a home for their prey, since tuna aren’t far away. In Florida’s coastal waters, there are plenty of wrecks, reefs, and ledges to attract tuna. 

2. Examine the temperature

Tuna fish like temperatures between 70 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit. Extremely high or low water temperatures have an impact on the amount of oxygen in the water. Tuna will frequently become less active as a result of this, and will desire to search for food.

As a result, before heading out to tuna fish, you should read sea surface temperature charts to keep track of the temperature. However, very freezing temperatures in Florida seas are uncommon.

Shrimp Boats No. 3

Where there are shrimp boats, there will most likely be a lot of tuna since their bait will attract the fish. Since a result, waiting for the haul of these types of vessels is a smart idea, as tuna are likely to follow. Offshore, scallop ships are also a fantastic location to catch large tuna.

4. Selecting the Most Effective Bait

Knowing which bait to use to attract and capture fish is an essential advice while chasing any kind of fish. When it comes to bait, the phrase “match the hatch” is often employed. Tuna eat on various types of bait at different times of the year, so keep that in mind.

If you’re trying to attract tuna, these are some of the best baits to use:

  • Blue Runners – Blue Runners come in huge quantities and are strong, so they can resist the tug of difficult tuna.
  • Herring – Herring is one of tuna’s favorite prey. As a result, they’re an excellent choice for tuna fishing prey.
  • Flying Fish – If you want to go drift fishing, flying fish is a fantastic choice.
  • Ballyhoo – Ballyhoo is difficult to keep alive, but it comes in handy when you run out of live prey for the fish.

Other Florida Pelagic Big Game Species

Florida is home to a variety of tuna species. In fact, the state is renowned for being home to a variety of different pelagic species that make for excellent catches and meals.

Wahoo

In Hawaii, the Wahoo fish is known as Ono, which means “delicious.” Blueish-green and silver hues, a sleek shape, and extremely fast speeds distinguish them. Wahoos also have a long snout that is almost the same length as their heads. They may live for up to nine years.

These fish may be found all year long throughout Florida’s Atlantic coast, from Key West to Jacksonville. Outside of the state, they may be found in tropical and subtropical seas all over the globe. You should be able to locate them whether you hunt in the Atlantic, Indian, or Pacific oceans.

When it comes to catching wahoo, high-speed or slow-trolling, chunking, and kite fishing are all viable options.

Billfish

Billfish are so named because of its large spear-like bill. This feature of their anatomy allows them to slash their prey. They also have large dorsal fins and small pelvic fins.

Billfish are extremely migratory, and Florida is regarded as one of the top three destinations for billfishing, particularly from July to September. Live bait, artificial lures, and rigged natural bait are all viable options.

Mahi Mahi

Mahi Mahi are found in tropical and subtropical areas of water all around the globe. Their name means “extremely powerful” in Hawaiian. Because of its diversity of colors and large body, the fish stands out.

They may be found on the Atlantic coast of Florida, and they can be found in tropical and subtropical seas all around the globe. The best months to look for them on the East Coast are April through July.

Rigged ballyhoo, bubblers, and bullet heads are among of the most popular techniques for capturing Mahi Mahi.

Sharks Mako

Mako sharks may grow to be over 12 feet long and weigh over 1,200 pounds. Due to their extremely migratory tendencies, these sharks dwell kilometers off the east coast and often traverse whole seas.

They’re extremely quick, with top speeds of more than 40 miles per hour. Unfortunately, Mako sharks are among the most aggressive sharks you’ll ever see, jumping onto boats when fishermen try to capture them, making them a difficult and sometimes hazardous yet rewarding catch. 

You’ll want to utilize trolling and drill fishing if you want to take on the fish.

King Mackerel is a kind of fish.

King Mackerels are grey and silver fish with a length of 19 to 35 inches and a weight of 5 to 10 pounds. From North Carolina to Florida, they live in open bodies of water along the shore.

The mackerel season in Florida runs all year, but the best months to go are March, April, October, and November. Pilchards, mullet, and blue runners are some of the finest kinds of bait for these fish.

If you’re searching for tuna in the US, Florida should be your first stop. It’s a fantastic place to go for tuna and other pelagic species because of the availability of seawater, fishing ports, and contests. Tuna is accessible almost all year in the state. In the spring and summer, though, you’ll have the greatest success. 

To prevent any catch-related difficulties while fishing in Florida, conduct thorough study on bait, temperature, seasons, and restrictions.

Florida is the perfect destination for fishing and boating in general. Its beautiful beaches and crystal blue waters, along with its year-round weather, make it a great place for fishing and boating. In fact, Florida is considered one of the top five states for fishing and boating, so you will find a great variety of fishing and boating options in Florida.. Read more about best tuna fishing in florida and let us know what you think.

Frequently Asked Questions

What state has the best tuna fishing?

The state of Hawaii has the best tuna fishing.

Where are the most bluefin tuna caught?

Bluefin tuna are caught in the Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, and Indian Ocean.

How far offshore do you need to catch tuna?

The answer to this question is dependent on the type of tuna you are trying to catch. Tuna can be caught in a variety of different depths, but generally speaking, they need to be at least 50 meters deep.

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