Tag Archives: Florida

Our Little Boat Fishing Trip Looking For Keepers

catfish
Catfish (not mine – credit goes to tpsdave @ Pixabay)

Went out on the little boat yesterday and three of us tried our best to catch a keeper. If we wanted to eat a meal of catfish, we could easily have done so. I caught a couple of large cats when we stopped one of the backwater canals for a swim and then fished from the water. We had more room than when we all tried to cast a line from the Gheenoe.

Other than the catfish, I did get a small snook. He was a silver shimmering beauty! It’s snook season right now, and my older son was hoping to reel one in. All he got was a few catfish himself. My younger son got a small redfish, and we certainly saw more than a few “tailing redfish” along the shore. Yes, I am beginning to learn fisherman talk. When redfish are eating they circle and show their tail. The ones we watched each seemed to be alone, but they can swim in big groups with their tails above the water, and that’s what the fishermen look for.  The ones we watched would swim in a circle and make a large ripple in the calm water. These fish are really beautiful and they are delicious to eat. But size is important when you catch one you want to keep.

Because the little “Yea Mon” (what my son named his boat) has a shallow draft, we can get into the backwater channels where most other boats can’t go. We always find shallow water to swim around in and sand islands when the tide is low.

And we have the place all to ourselves!  The water was flowing, and we could drift along in the very warm water.  Yes, it’s brown, but it usually is in this area.

florida backwater swimming
Floating in Backwater Chanel

Other than fishing and enjoying the sunny Florida weather, I also did some shell hunting. Because the tide was just coming in, there were a number of sandy beach areas exposed. I found a large shark’s eye shell with a piece missing. Also picked up a crown conch and pear whelk. Picked them up and then had to put them back down. Every shell was inhabited by a hermit crab.

sharks eye and crown conch
Shark’s Eye & Crown Conch
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Slime covered Pear Whelk Shell

I really would have liked to keep those shells as they are all favorites of mine. In fact I don’t think I have ever found a pear whelk. I really wanted that one for my seashell collection! The place to go and get great shells is the Gulf Coast. A vacation may be in order – one day.

I took photos with my iPhone, but because of the extremely sunny conditions, it was difficult. Also, I worry about dropping the darn thing. I really need a waterproof case. Shuffling along the uneven sandy bottom of the canal is tricky. I could step into a hole at any time and drop my phone! My nice camera is still packed away, waiting for me to move into a permanent home.

Once we have our newer, bigger boat, it will be so much easier to grab the phone and get video and photos while the boys fish. Not to mention that fishing will be much more fun! So it’s all a waiting game, which is par for the course in my life. But we still had a very nice day out on the water.

 

It’s a Keeper! Found a Big Horse Conch

horse conch big seashell
Horse Conch
Yesterday, while walking the low tide sands around Three Sisters Islands, I came across a big seashell that was empty! I saw a lot of nice crown conchs, small pear whelks, and a nice big sharks eye shell, but all were occupied by hermit crabs. Until I saw the horse conch, all I had collected were bivalves, which were filled with sand, and not living creatures. I found a ‘giant Atlantic cockle’ which is joined, so I have two perfect, connected halves, and a pretty ‘dosinia’ which is a flat, whitish shell.

We piled into the Gheenoe – three of us – which was a tight fit, and headed out in the heat to do some fishing and island hopping. Being the middle of the week, we had the river pretty much to ourselves. Since the tide was just beginning to come in, there was plenty of exposed sand to explore.

The only types of shells that are abundant are the clumps of oysters which are the bane of boaters. So finding some collectable shells means searching. It was a 95 degree day (actually cooler than what we’ve been having), and even the water was hot – yes, like a hot tub – but I shuffled around the edges of the island in search of something good that was close enough to see and reach. Continue reading It’s a Keeper! Found a Big Horse Conch

Florida and New Hampshire, in Comparison

beach chairs
Florida vs. New Hampshire

Florida and New Hampshire don’t have much in common.  I have lived for extended periods of time in both locations.  But each place has a beauty which is uniquely their own.

Both states have beaches, although they are distinctly opposite.  Warm water vs. icy cold; long stretches of smooth sand vs. one small area packed with so many people you can barely see the sand.  Actually, I haven’t been to Hampton Beach, NH since I was a kid. But the ocean water in the north stays extremely cold even in mid-summer.  I see no reason to venture near it!  I’ve been spoiled by the tropical, sandy beaches.

Let’s talk home improvements.  In Florida I had no time limits as to making home improvements.  In NH we scramble to replace the roof and landscape the yard before it freezes and snows.  Except for the afternoon thunderstorms in Florida, and the occasional threat of a hurricane, the weather was not much of a concern.

But in Florida I never felt safe, like I do living in my area of New Hampshire.   Continue reading Florida and New Hampshire, in Comparison

Guessing This is a Rock Snail Shell

seashell orange inside
Florida Rock Snail

I am only guessing, but I think that this little shell is a Florida Rock Snail (Stramonita haemastoma). Because it has a pretty orange color inside and horizontal stripes, I think my guess is correct. It measures 1 1/8 inches in length.  I picked it up on Sanibel Island many years ago.

I’ve always thought that some of the prettiest seashells are the smaller ones.  Everyone seems to be looking to collect big, fancy shells, but look closer – tiny is sometimes just as fun to find.

I miss the beaches of Florida, but I may be living back down that way soon.  With walks along the beach in mind, I plan to keep my eyes open for some fun treasures to collect.

I won’t be living on expensive, high class Sanibel Island, so I won’t have piles of shells to dig through.  On the east coast shells are not nearly as abundant.  And that is why finding them is so darn fun.

Not many people can afford to live on the beach, but living close enough to make a short drive there is good enough.  And living in the state of Florida means there will be a good variety of beaches to visit, and waterways to travel.  I see a nice boat in my future!

If you know what this shell is called, and it’s not a rock snail, please leave your comment below.  Thanks for reading!

A day on the Intra Coastal

My son was out doing some Florida fishing, looking for snook, but caught this Jack Crevalle and a bunch of mullet. He smoked the mullet and said they were pretty tasty, but that Jack was not good eating.

CartersFLcharters

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I went out on the intra coastal and caught some fish. It ended up being a beautiful day. A little hot (87°) but beautiful.

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