Shark Fishing Clearwater Florida

Clearwater beach, featuring crystal clear blue water and a sandy shore.
Shaman Mountain is reader-supported. We may earn a small commission on certain links, at no additional cost to you. Learn more.

Clearwater, Florida is a popular destination for shark fishing enthusiasts, and for good reason. This beautiful coastal city boasts a wide variety of fish species, including some of the most sought-after game fish in the world. Among these species are several types of sharks, which are known for their size, strength, and thrilling fights. In this guide, we will explore the best practices, tips, and tricks for shark fishing in Clearwater, Florida, including the best time of year to fish, recommended gear and baits, top fishing spots, regulations and licenses, and expert advice for a successful and safe fishing experience. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a beginner, this guide will provide you with all the information you need to plan an unforgettable shark fishing adventure in Clearwater, Florida.

Best Shark Fishing Spots in Clearwater Florida

Clearwater, Florida is known for its excellent fishing opportunities, and shark fishing is no exception. Here are some of the best spots for shark fishing in Clearwater:

  1. Clearwater Beach: Clearwater Beach is a popular spot for shark fishing, especially near the pier. You can catch a variety of shark species here, including blacktip sharks and bull sharks.
  2. Honeymoon Island State Park: This park is located just north of Clearwater Beach and is another great spot for shark fishing. You can catch a variety of species here, including sandbar sharks and lemon sharks.
  3. Dunedin Causeway: The Dunedin Causeway is a great spot for shark fishing, especially near the bridges. You can catch a variety of species here, including blacktip sharks and bonnethead sharks.
  4. Anclote Key Preserve State Park: This park is located just north of Clearwater and is a popular spot for shark fishing. You can catch a variety of species here, including hammerhead sharks and tiger sharks.

Remember to always check local regulations and obtain the necessary licenses before shark fishing in Clearwater, Florida.

Land Based Shark Fishing Clearwater, Florida

Types of Sharks You Can Catch in Clearwater Florida

Clearwater, Florida offers a variety of shark species for fishing enthusiasts. Here are some of the types of sharks you can catch in Clearwater:

  1. Blacktip Shark: The blacktip shark is one of the most commonly caught shark species in Clearwater, Florida. They are known for their speed and agility and can grow up to 6 feet in length.
  2. Bull Shark: Bull sharks are another popular species to catch in Clearwater, Florida. They are known for their strength and aggression and can grow up to 11 feet in length.
  3. Hammerhead Shark: Hammerhead sharks are a unique and exciting catch for shark fishing enthusiasts in Clearwater. They can grow up to 14 feet in length and are known for their distinctive head shape.
  4. Lemon Shark: Lemon sharks are a popular catch in Clearwater, Florida, especially near Honeymoon Island State Park. They are known for their yellowish color and can grow up to 10 feet in length.
  5. Tiger Shark: Tiger sharks are a challenging and exciting catch for shark fishing enthusiasts in Clearwater. They are known for their powerful jaws and can grow up to 18 feet in length.

Remember to always handle sharks with care and release them back into the water as quickly as possible. It is also important to follow local regulations and obtain the necessary licenses before shark fishing in Clearwater, Florida.

Clearwater Shark Fishing and More!

Best Time of Year for Shark Fishing in Clearwater Florida

The best time of year for shark fishing in Clearwater, Florida, is typically during the warmer months of the year when the water temperatures are higher.

  1. Blacktip sharks: These sharks can be caught in Clearwater from late spring to early fall, with the best time to catch them being from July to September.
  2. Bull sharks: These sharks are present in Clearwater waters year-round, but the best time to catch them is during the summer months when they are more active and feeding.
  3. Hammerhead sharks: These sharks are typically caught in Clearwater from May to September, with the peak season being from June to August.

Please keep in mind that shark fishing is highly regulated in Clearwater, so it’s essential to follow local rules and regulations and obtain the necessary licenses before fishing for sharks.

Best Baits and Lures for Shark Fishing in Clearwater Florida

When it comes to shark fishing in Clearwater, Florida, there are a variety of baits and lures that can be effective depending on the species of shark you are targeting. Here are some of the best baits and lures to use when shark fishing in Clearwater:

  1. Live bait: Live bait is always a good option when shark fishing in Clearwater. Some of the best types of live bait for shark fishing include mullet, ladyfish, and blue runners.
  2. Cut bait: Cut bait is another effective option for shark fishing in Clearwater. Fresh chunks of mullet or ladyfish can be particularly effective for attracting sharks.
  3. Squid: Squid is a popular bait for shark fishing, and can be particularly effective for attracting smaller species like blacktip sharks.
  4. Circle hooks: Circle hooks are a popular type of hook for shark fishing because they are designed to hook the shark in the corner of the mouth, which can reduce the risk of injury to the shark.
  5. Wire leaders: Wire leaders are essential for shark fishing in Clearwater because they help prevent the shark from biting through your fishing line.
  6. Chum: Chumming the water with a mix of fish parts and blood can help attract sharks to your fishing spot.

Remember to always follow local regulations and guidelines when shark fishing in Clearwater, and to handle all sharks with care.

Recommended Gear for Shark Fishing in Clearwater Florida

Shark fishing in Clearwater, Florida can require specialized gear to help you catch and safely handle these powerful predators. Here are some of the recommended gear items for shark fishing in Clearwater:

  1. Heavy-duty fishing rod: A sturdy fishing rod with a high weight capacity is necessary for shark fishing. A rod with a length of 7-9 feet is typically suitable for shark fishing in Clearwater
  2. Spinning reel: A high-quality spinning reel with a strong drag system is essential for reeling in large, powerful sharks.
  3. Heavy-duty fishing line: A strong, heavy-duty fishing line with a test weight of at least 80 pounds is necessary for shark fishing. Braided line is often recommended because it provides added strength and sensitivity.
  4. Wire leaders: As mentioned earlier, wire leaders are essential for shark fishing because they help prevent the shark from biting through your fishing line.
  5. Circle hooks: Circle hooks are designed to hook the shark in the corner of the mouth, which can reduce the risk of injury to the shark. They are also mandatory for shark fishing in Clearwater.
  6. Gaffs and/or nets: A gaff and/or net may be necessary to safely handle and land the shark once it’s been caught. Make sure to use a large, sturdy gaff or net with a handle long enough to keep you at a safe distance from the shark.
  7. Gloves: Heavy-duty gloves can help protect your hands when handling sharks or other sharp-toothed fish.
  8. Personal floatation device (PFD): A PFD is strongly recommended for all shark fishing trips, especially when fishing from a boat.

Large Shark Caught From Shore-Clearwater Florida

Best Shark Fishing Charters in Clearwater Florida

Clearwater, Florida is home to many reputable shark fishing charters that can help you land that big catch. Here are some of the best shark fishing charters in Clearwater:

  1. Dos Amigos Fishing Charters: Dos Amigos offers a variety of shark fishing charters that range from four to eight hours in duration. They have experienced guides who know the local waters well and can help you target a variety of shark species.
  2. Queen Fleet Deep Sea Fishing: Queen Fleet offers half-day and full-day shark fishing charters with experienced captains and crew. They provide all necessary fishing gear and bait, and offer a comfortable and spacious vessel for your fishing trip.
  3. Double Eagle Deep Sea Fishing: Double Eagle offers a range of shark fishing charters, including night shark fishing trips for those who want a unique experience. They have experienced guides who know the best spots to catch a variety of shark species, and provide all necessary fishing gear and bait.
  4. Clearwater Fishing Charters: Clearwater Fishing Charters offers private shark fishing charters for up to six passengers. They have experienced guides who can help you target a variety of shark species, and provide all necessary fishing gear and bait.
  5. Fin’s Fishing Charters: Fin’s Fishing Charters offers half-day and full-day shark fishing charters, as well as night shark fishing trips. They have experienced guides who can help you catch a variety of shark species, and provide all necessary fishing gear and bait.

Remember to always book with a reputable and licensed shark fishing charter when fishing in Clearwater, and to follow all local regulations and guidelines for shark fishing.

Regulations and Licenses for Shark Fishing in Clearwater Florida

Shark fishing in Clearwater, Florida is regulated by both state and federal laws. Here are some of the regulations and licenses you need to be aware of before going shark fishing in Clearwater:

  1. Fishing license: Anyone who wants to fish in Florida, including shark fishing, is required to have a valid Florida fishing license. You can purchase a license online from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) website, or at a local tackle shop.
  2. Species regulations: There are several shark species that are protected in Florida, including the great hammerhead, scalloped hammerhead, smooth hammerhead, and tiger shark. It is illegal to harvest these species and they must be released immediately if caught.
  3. Size and bag limits: Florida has size and bag limits for many shark species. Before going shark fishing, it is important to check the FWC website or consult with your fishing charter to ensure you are in compliance with all size and bag limits.
  4. Gear restrictions: Florida has specific gear restrictions for shark fishing, including requirements for circle hooks, dehooking devices, and heavy-duty tackle. It is important to follow these regulations to ensure the safety of both the angler and the shark.
  5. Catch and release guidelines: When shark fishing in Clearwater, it is important to follow proper catch and release guidelines to ensure the shark’s survival. This includes minimizing handling time, using appropriate gear and techniques to release the shark quickly, and avoiding dragging the shark onto the beach or boat.

Make sure to familiarize yourself with all the regulations and guidelines for shark fishing in Clearwater, and follow them closely to ensure a safe fishing experience.

Bull Shark Fishing Clearwater Florida

Where to Stay When Shark Fishing in Clearwater Florida

Clearwater, Florida has a wide variety of accommodation options for visitors, including hotels, motels, resorts, vacation rentals, and campgrounds. Here are some recommendations on where to stay when shark fishing in Clearwater:

  1. Beachfront hotels and resorts: Clearwater is known for its beautiful beaches, and staying at a beachfront hotel or resort can offer easy access to both the beach and shark fishing charters. Some recommended options include the Hilton Clearwater Beach Resort & Spa, the Sheraton Sand Key Resort, and the Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach.
  2. Vacation rentals: Vacation rentals can offer more space and privacy than traditional hotels, making them a great option for families or groups. Clearwater has many vacation rental options, including condos, apartments, and houses. Some popular websites for finding vacation rentals include Airbnb, VRBO, and HomeAway.
  3. Motels and budget hotels: For those on a budget, Clearwater has a variety of affordable motels and budget hotels, many of which are located close to the beach and fishing charters. Some recommended options include the Gulfview Hotel on the Beach, the Seaside Inn & Suites Clearwater Beach, and the Beachview Hotel.
  4. Campgrounds: Clearwater has several campgrounds for those who prefer to sleep under the stars. Some recommended options include the Caladesi Island State Park Campground, the Dunedin RV Resort, and the Clearwater Travel Resort.

When choosing where to stay in Clearwater for shark fishing, it is important to consider factors such as location, budget, and the amenities you need. Be sure to book your accommodations well in advance, especially during peak season, to ensure availability.

Land Based Hammer Head Shark Fishing!

Expert Tips and Tricks for Successful Shark Fishing in Clearwater Florida

If you’re planning to go shark fishing in Clearwater, Florida, there are some expert tips and tricks you should keep in mind to increase your chances of success:

  1. Use the right gear: Shark fishing requires specialized gear, including heavy-duty rods and reels, wire leaders, and strong hooks. Make sure you have the appropriate gear for the type of shark you are targeting, and consider hiring a charter that provides gear if you don’t have your own.
  2. Choose the right bait: Sharks are attracted to a variety of baits, including live and dead fish, squid, and chum. Research the specific type of shark you are targeting to determine the best bait to use, and consider bringing a variety of options to increase your chances of success.
  3. Fish during the right time of day: Sharks are most active during dawn and dusk, so consider fishing during these times for the best chance of a bite.
  4. Fish in the right location: Different types of sharks prefer different types of habitat, so do your research to determine the best fishing spots for the type of shark you are targeting. Ask locals or consider hiring a charter that knows the area well.
  5. Practice catch and release: Sharks are an important part of the ecosystem and many species are threatened or endangered. To help protect these animals, practice catch and release fishing techniques and handle the sharks with care to minimize harm.
  6. Stay safe: Sharks can be dangerous, so it’s important to take precautions to stay safe while fishing. Consider fishing with a buddy, avoid fishing at night, and always keep a safe distance from the sharks.

By following these expert tips and tricks, you can increase your chances of a successful and safe shark fishing experience in Clearwater, Florida.

Conclusion

Clearwater, Florida is an excellent destination for shark fishing, with a variety of species available year-round. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a beginner, there are plenty of opportunities to catch a thrilling shark in these waters. Remember to do your research on regulations, licenses, and the best fishing spots, and follow expert tips and tricks to increase your chances of success and stay safe while fishing. With the right gear, bait, and approach, you can have a memorable and exciting shark fishing adventure in Clearwater, Florida.

Related Posts:

A redfish caught and released into the marsh in Louisiana

Saltwater Fishing in Louisiana

Are you looking for an exciting and rewarding saltwater fishing experience? Look no further than Louisiana, a state known for its rich and diverse fishing

A boy on a beach with fishing rods, North Carolina, Outer Banks

Saltwater Fishing in North Carolina

Are you an avid angler looking for a new saltwater fishing destination? Look no further than North Carolina! With miles of coastline and diverse fishing