Homosassa, pronounced home-uh-SASS-uh, is among Florida’s most sought-after Tarpon fishing destinations. Ecological wonders await you in Homosassa – West Indian Manatees play among the gentle waves and the region’s shallow waters invite inshore fly fishing.
Although Tarpon is this articles target fish- Homosossa’s waters are also abundant with redfish, sea trout, snook, and more.
Tarpon are renowned for their aerial display. These fish fight hard and thrash on the line. Above the water’s surface, Tarpon perform somersaults that are paralleled by no other aquatic creature, not even larger game.
Homosassa’s bay is an average 3-4 foot in depth. These “Flats” endlessly yield Tarpon during late Summer and into Fall. Tarpon reside among the inshore oyster bars, reefs and lush sea grass this time of year. During Summer, these fish spawn along the inshore seagrass and are readily targeted, especially along Chassahowitzka Bay.
Chassahowitzka Bay, a shallow mangrove lined tidal pool, is the region’s off the beaten path Tarpon fishing paradise. The knobby-kneed mangrove makes for surreal vistas. During late Summer, Tarpon are in a feeding frenzy and bite almost anything – these fish remain active in shallow waters during late Summer and will take flies, artificial, and live baits.
Some local anglers suggest deploying a Toad Fly. This lure was developed by professional angler and Florida Keys resident Harry Spear. It’s a polyfibre yellow and green furry toad-like Tarpon magnet. However, for live bait anglers in Homosassa- Homosassa is home to Bonnie the Bait Lady. Bonnie the Bait Lady sells live Shrimp from a pontoon. It’s hard to miss the boat, it’s adorned with a giant Shrimp sculpture. Bonnie has set her traps and sold bait to local anglers for over a decade.
Don’t forget to check with the local fish and wildlife administration before frying up the big catch. It’s wisest to practice catch and release fishing in Gulf waters, however, many of the regions inshore fish make for an excellent meal. Moreover, Homosassa is among the few places on Earth to catch a glimpse of the American Crocodile.