Fishingcast: Conditions for Southwest Florida, May 11-17

Capt. Bill Walsh

Red tide forecast by region. Heat drives water temp 80-85. Some scattered showers. Wind easterly, moderate but gusty p.m. Tides: early week new moon, strong p.m. outgoing.

Enjoy fishing and tarpon season along the Southwest Florida coast.

More:On The Hook: Comparative sport fishing


  • Backwater: Red tide, low. Snook peak action, harvest closed to spawn. Beaches a.m. incoming Kice to Keewaydin. Few tarpon Marco River, incoming, cut catfish, no chum. Mangrove snapper, all mangrove edges on shrimp.
  • Nearshore: Pelagiics Capri barges incoming under chum. Five Mile Reef, snapper, some grouper. Walton Reef, Mackerel, incoming under chum.
  • Offshore: Migrating pelagics, deep wrecks, live bait under chum. Mid reefs, lane and mangrove snapper, weighted jigs under chum.


  • Backwater: Red tide – low coast, moderate inshore, ICW to Rookery. Hurricane docks, improving catch to keep ratio mangrove snapper. Snook / whiting edges Keewaydin beach, incoming.
  • Nearshore: Few tarpon Gordon approach on first light incoming. Mackerel et al, Pier to Doctors on early incoming. Snapper, Gordon Five, Santa Lucia wreck.
  • Offshore: Bait rich mid to deep wrecks for migrating kings, sharks. Signs red grouper inching east in warmth, hard bottom 65’-plus with live bait to hard bottom.


  • Backwater: Red tide warning – high north, fading south. Trout first to scatter in threat. Water cleaning draws pompano, mackerel Estero Bay, Carlos Point. Snook active circa Little Carlos Pass.
  • Nearshore: Snook all along beaches Wiggins to Lovers; all release until September. Mack, blue action east side MAY Reef.
  • Offshore: Flat water till late week. Red grouper, some keep to catch 65-70’ due west hard bottom W of Carlos. Mid reefs 40-50’ hold good lane snapper.

Questions: Email