Category Archives: Spanish Mackerel

Captiva Fishing, Spanish Mackerel, April 14, 2017

Spanish Mackerel, Sanibel Fishing & Captiva Fishing, Sanibel Island, Friday, April 14, 2017.
Spanish Mackerel, Sanibel Fishing & Captiva Fishing, Sanibel Island, Friday, April 14, 2017.

Sanibel Fishing & Captiva Fishing, Spanish Mackerel!

Sanibel & Captiva Rentals
Sanibel & Captiva Rentals

Sanibel Fishing & Captiva Fishing, Captiva Island, Friday, April 14: Spanish Mackerel, Blue Runners, Snook yesterday, a lot of good fishing; latest Red Tide Reportbetter water moving north of Sanibel up through Captiva & North Captiva.  Please click here to Book A Charter or call 239-472-8658.

We’re located at Castaways Marina, Santiva, Sanibel Island, just before the Blind Pass bridge to Captiva Island.

For more photos and/or fishing reports from our other Captains’ boats from other marinas, please also visit our SanibelFort MyersSeashell & ShellingFlorida Fishing Report and Cuban Fishing sites. Please check here for Live Sanibel Traffic CamsClick here for College Of Fishing Hats & Apparel.

Spanish Mackerel, Inshore, Sanibel Fishing & Captiva Fishing, Friday, July 8, 2016.
Spanish Mackerel, Inshore, Sanibel Fishing & Captiva Fishing, Friday, July 8, 2016.

“The Atlantic Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus maculatus) is a migratory species of mackerel that swims to the Northern Gulf of Mexico in spring, returns to south Florida in the Eastern Gulf, and to Mexico in the Western Gulf in the fall.The fish exhibits a green back; its sides are silvery marked with about three rows of round to elliptical yellow spots. Lateral line gradually curving down from the upper end of the gill cover toward caudal peduncle. The first (spiny) dorsal fin is black at the front. Posterior membranes are white with a black edge. Its single row of cutting edged teeth in each jaw (around sixty-four teeth in all) are large, uniform, closely spaced and flattened from side to side. As with the

Fly Fishing, Spanish Mackerel 7-7-14, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.
Fly Fishing, Spanish Mackerel 7-7-14, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.

The fish exhibits a green back; its sides are silvery marked with about three rows of round to elliptical yellow spots. Lateral line gradually curving down from the upper end of the gill cover toward caudal peduncle. The first (spiny) dorsal fin is black at the front. Posterior membranes are white with a black edge. Its single row of cutting edged teeth in each jaw (around sixty-four teeth in all) are large, uniform, closely spaced and flattened from side to side. As with the King mackerel and the Cero mackerel, these teeth look very similar to those of the Bluefish, Pomatomus saltatrix.

Spanish Mackerel, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.
Spanish Mackerel, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.

It appears that one Atlantic and one or more Gulf groups of Spanish mackerel occur in Florida waters. With rising water temperatures, the Atlantic group migrates along the Atlantic coast of the United States from Miami Florida, beginning in late February through July reaching as far as southern Cape Cod, Massachusetts, then returning in fall. An Eastern Gulf group moves northward from the Florida Keys during late winter and spring, appearing off the central West Coast of Florida about April 1. The movement continues westward and terminates along the northern Texas coast. During fall, this group migrates back to its wintering grounds in the Keys.

Spanish Mackerel caught in Redfish Pass, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.
Spanish Mackerel caught in Redfish Pass, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.

The Gulf group of Spanish mackerel spawn in batches from May to September offshore of Texas, off the Gulf shore of Florida as early as April in some years. The Atlantic group spawns starting in April off the Carolinas and from late August to late September in the northernmost part of its range. Spanish mackerel mature by age-1 at a fork length (FL) of 14 inches (36 cm). Females live longer and grow to larger sizes than males. Females may live as long as 11 years, growing to 11 pounds (5.0 kg) and 33 inches (84 cm) FL. Males reach about age-6 and 19 inches (48 cm) FL.[3]

Noah with his two Spanish Mackerel on Sanibel & Captiva charters!
Noah with his two Spanish Mackerel on Sanibel & Captiva charters!

Spanish mackerel are a highly valued fish throughout their range from North Carolina to Texas. Recreational anglers catch Spanish mackerel from boats while trolling or drifting and from boats, piers, jetties, and beaches by casting spoons and jigs and live bait fishing. Fast lure retrieves are key to catching these quick fish. Commercial methods are primarily run-around gill netting, and rarely, by trolling lures similar to those used by recreational anglers.

Spanish mackerel are managed in commercial and recreation fisheries with bag limits, size limits, commercial trip limits, and with only seasonal fishing allowed. The management of mackerel has been considered a success because the population used to be in decline but is now on the rise without overfishing occurring.

Eight Spanish Mackerel caught in Redfish Pass, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.
Eight Spanish Mackerel caught in Redfish Pass, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.

Spanish mackerel are primarily marketed fresh or frozen as fillets as commercially caught fish are too small to sell in the form of steaks. Their raw flesh is white. They may be prepared by broiling, frying, baking or, rarely, by smoking.

The Spanish mackerel is also a popular fish among devotees of sushi who prize it for its flavor.

Spanish Mackerel, 7-29-14, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.
Spanish Mackerel, 7-29-14, Sanibel & Captiva Islands & Fort Myers Charters & Fishing Guide Service.

Spanish mackerel are similar in appearance to small King mackerel (Scomberomorus cavalla) and Cero mackerel (Scomberomorus regalis). All three are very similar in shape and coloration. They may be distinguished as follows:

The lateral line on Spanish and Cero mackerel slopes gradually from the top edge of the gill to the tail. In contrast, that of the king mackerel takes an abrupt drop at mid-body.

The first (spiny) dorsal on Spanish and Cero mackerel has a prominent black patch. The King mackerel has none. As all three species normally keep the first dorsal folded back in a body groove, this difference is not immediately evident.

Spanish mackerel have prominent yellow spots on the flanks at all sizes. In addition to such spots, Cero mackerel have one or more yellow stripes along the centerline. Young King mackerel have similar, but slightly smaller spots; these fade away on individuals weighing over 10 pounds (4.5 kg), but they may still be seen as spots of slightly darker green on the upper back from some angles of view.

Captiva Fishing, Spanish Mackerel, 5-14-15, Sanibel Fishing & Captiva Fishing & Fort Myers Fishing Charters & Guide Service.
Captiva Fishing, Spanish Mackerel, 5-14-15, Sanibel Fishing & Captiva Fishing & Fort Myers Fishing Charters & Guide Service.

Worldwide, there are many members of this genus quite similar to one or another of these three species. In particular, off Mexico, Atlantic Spanish mackerel may be confused with Serra Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus brasiliensis) which may appear in the same area.”  More background here.

We’re big advocates of catch and release, particularly for snook, but pretty much for most species.  Only take what you are going to eat, and a lot of fish are better off as sportfish, even if they are in season.  Our motto is let ‘em get bigger and catch ‘em again!

Please click calendar at upper right or call 239-472-8658 to book a charter.

Whether you’re a longtime customer who has fished with us for many years or a first-time customer, expert fisherman or just a family with young children out to catch fish and have fun, you are going to enjoy being out in the boat with Hank and me!  We greatly appreciate your friendship and business!

We grew up on Sanibel and Captiva fishing and shelling every day! It is what we know and do well!  If you had a good time fishing with Captain Joey Burnsed on a Sanibel & Captiva charter, please post an “excellent” review on Google PlacesTripAdvisorYelp, or Facebook!  If you had any issues at all with your charter, please let us know immediately and we’ll do everything we can to make it right!  Huge thanks for doing this!

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Fair winds and following seas,

Captain Joey Burnsed ~ please click calendar at the upper left or call 239-472-8658 to book a Sanibel & Captiva Islands, Boca Grande or Fort Myers fishing guide trip or shelling charter.