The Bridge Street Pier, Bradenton Beach, Florida
The historic Bridge Street pier on Anna Maria Island is located at 200 Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, Florida.
1. **Snook** – Snook, also known as linesiders, are one of the most sought-after game fish in the area. With their distinct lateral line and elongated body, these fish are strong fighters when hooked. You can find them year-round at Bradenton Beach City Pier, but they are most plentiful during the warmer months.
2. **Redfish** – Redfish, or red drum, are another popular catch at this pier. These fish have a reddish hue and can grow quite large, providing an exciting challenge for anglers. Redfish can be found throughout the year, but they tend to migrate closer to the pier during the fall and winter months.
3. **Mackerel** – Spanish mackerel and king mackerel are abundant in the waters surrounding Bradenton Beach City Pier. These fish are known for their speed and aggressive nature, making them a thrilling catch. Spanish mackerel can be caught year-round, while king mackerel are more prevalent during the summer and fall.
4. **Flounder** – Bradenton Beach City Pier is a prime spot for targeting flounder. These flatfish are masters of camouflage, blending into the sandy bottom. Flounder fishing is excellent in the spring and fall months, but you can find them year-round.
5. **Sheepshead** – Sheepshead are abundant around the pier, especially during the cooler months. These fish have a distinctive set of teeth resembling human incisors, which they use to crush shells and other hard prey. Sheepsheads are known for their tasty flesh and make for great table fare.
6. **Tarpon** – The Bradenton Beach City Pier also attracts tarpon, the “silver kings” of the fishing world. These large and powerful fish can weigh hundreds of pounds, providing an unforgettable battle when hooked. Tarpon are most plentiful during the warmer months, but they can be found year-round.
These are just a few of the many fish species you can catch at Bradenton Beach City Pier. Other common catches include pompano, black drum, grouper, and many more. The variety of fish makes this pier an excellent destination for anglers of all skill levels.
## The Right Bait and Fishing Tackle
Now that you know what fish species you can target at Bradenton Beach City Pier, let’s discuss the best bait and fishing tackle to use for a successful fishing expedition.
1. **Live Shrimp** – Live shrimp are one of the most effective baits for catching a wide range of fish species. Shrimp can be rigged on a variety of setups, such as a popping cork rig or a simple hook and weight setup.
2. **Pinfish** – Pinfish, also known as grunts, make excellent live bait for snook and redfish. These small fish can be caught using a cast net or purchased at local bait shops.
3. **Lures** – If you prefer using artificial baits, consider using jigs, spoons, or soft plastic lures resembling baitfish or shrimp. These can be effective for catching mackerel, snook, and other predatory species.
### Fishing Tackle
1. **Rods and Reels** – Medium to heavy action spinning or baitcasting rods paired with reels suitable for saltwater fishing are recommended. The rod and reel should have enough strength to handle hard-fighting fish while providing sensitivity to detect subtle bites.
2. **Lines** – Monofilament lines with a test strength ranging from 10 to 20 pounds are suitable for most fishing scenarios at the pier. However, if targeting larger species like tarpon, consider using braided lines with a higher test strength.
3. **Hooks and Sinkers** – Circle hooks in sizes 1/0 to 3/0 are ideal for most pier fishing situations. Split shot or pyramid sinkers can be used to ensure your bait stays near the bottom.
4. **Leaders and Rigs** – Fluorocarbon leaders with a test strength of 20 to 30 pounds are recommended to prevent fish from breaking the line. Rig setups such as Carolina rigs or fish finder rigs are popular choices for pier fishing.
Remember to familiarize yourself with local fishing regulations and obtain the necessary licenses before fishing at Bradenton Beach City Pier. Follow catch limits and practice catch-and-release to conserve fish populations for future generations.
Florida Fishing License is required. Residents between 16 years of age and 65 and all non-residents over the age of 16 (who aren’t exempt) must have a Florida fishing license.
Be warned it’s illegal to use a cast net at this Pier in fact it’s a $75 fine if you get caught. Use a Sibiki rig to catch Pinfish using squid or frozen shrimp.
Cobia: Spring-early fall
Gulf flounder: Fall-spring
Ladyfish: Fall-early winter
Mullet: Fall-early winter
Red drum: Year-round
Sheepshead: Fall-early spring
Spotted seatrout**: Year-round
Tarpon: Spring-early summer