florida keys Reef Fishing

Fishing deep for the biggest game in the deep blue

Life on the reef in the Florida Keys is a place sure to be busy with all kinds of sea creatures.  They will come up in your chum-line and feed off the back of the GOTCHA, anchored up with precision along the craggy edges of the reef that make up the special environment under the sea off the Florida Keys.

Enjoy the comradarie of a boat full of bent rods as the Yellow Tail Bite heats up. We also have Mangrove snapper and Mutton snapper seasons as well as the time of year when the Grouper gather and are open season. Book your dates in Grouper season they go fast.

We fish the reef year round in the Florida Keys on the Gotcha, but primarily focus on it the months of October through April. The reef line runs parallel to the Keys and is an average distance of 4 to 5 miles from shore. The reef drops from an average depth of 60’ on the top to 90’ on the bottom.

On the Gotcha we use all kinds of fishing techniques while on the reef, with a lot of it not being strictly bottom fishing. The methods we use include bottom fishing with both live & dead baits, anchoring & chumming, kite fishing, drift fishing, trolling, and sight fishing. Common reef fish are yellowtail, mangrove, and mutton snapper, grouper, barracuda, cobia, mackerel, sharks, porgy, amberjack, and African pompano. While fishing on or just outside the outer reefs in 90 feet we also occasionally catch sailfish, dolphin, little tunny (bonito) king mackerel, and wahoo, especially when live baiting and the Gotcha crew will have rods & baits ready for anything. Many of the fish we catch while reef fishing make excellent table fare, so whether you take some home or bring a bag of fresh fillets to a local restaurant where you and your friends or family can delight in a delicious same day fresh Florida Keys “hook & cook” meal, you will no doubt enjoy your catch.

There are also quite a few shipwrecks just out side the reef which we fish around too. The wrecks that commonly produce hard fighting permit, grouper, snapper, African pompano, amberjack, and big sharks are in 100 to 250 feet of water and Captain David knows the best ones as well as some less pressured more secret ones.

  • Yellowtail
  • Grouper
  • Snapper