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SWFL-Bonita Beach:September Backwater Trips & Goliath Adventure

Capt. Dave Hanson
September 23, 2013
Bonita Beach - Saltwater Fishing Report

Labor Day Monday, 9/2/13, I fished the backwaters of Estero Bay with Lee and Lauren Wehr and their friends, Brian and Debbie Lucas. The group had originally planned to fish offshore, but with lots of rain over the gulf, they decided it might be safer to stay closer to the coast. We did, in fact, just beat the rain in, after a good morning of fishing. The group caught two nice, keeper redfish at 24 inches and 25 inches. They also reeled in a keeper sheepshead at 14 inches, along with three 11-inch keeper mangrove snapper, all caught on live shrimp.

The following Monday, 9/9, I fished Estero Bay again, this time with Steve Landy and Bob Bastuba. Using live shrimp, the guys caught two keeper redfish, one 21 inches long and one 24 inches long. They released a couple of crevalle jacks, some mangrove snapper shorts, and a 14-inch snook.

Friday-the-thirteenth turned out lucky for Scott Saveraid and friends, Dave Howell, Dave Carris, and Mark Kilmer, who wanted to have some fun on a catch-and-release trip, hoping for some goliath grouper action. The group caught three goliaths, one sixty pounds, two 80 pounds and one 100 pounds. All of those bit Spanish mackerels. The rest of our catches bit on live shrimp, and included two cobia at 26 and 27 inches, six 13-14 inch mangrove snapper, and a brace of 20-inch Spanish mackerel. We took some photos and video and released all.

Saturday, 9/21, I spent the morning fishing Estero Bay with Colby and Colleen Dunavan. The couple used live shrimp to catch two keeper redfish, Colby's red measuring 24 inches and Colleen's 23 inches. Colleen also caught and released a 23-inch snook. The couple added to the fish box one 13-inch sheepshead and a half dozen keeper mangrove snapper, all around 11 inches.

The photo shown is of angler Brian Lucas, with a 25 -inch redfish, caught on shrimp on a recent inshore trip.

Click to Enlarge Photo

You can check out all of our shark and goliath grouper action videos at the following link:


Bonita Beach Fishing Forecast:

Predictions this week are filled with rain. But these showers will be sporadic in terms of time of day and location. It might be risky to head too far offshore, but inshore fishing is probably do-able, with an eye on the weather, with tides still favorable.

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Private guided saltwater fishing trips, inshore and offshore, around Ft. Myers, Naples and Bonita Beach. Native guide with over 30 years local experience. Good species variety. Reasonable rates. Half and full-day trips offered. We book well in advance throughout the winter months, and slightly in advance during the summer months. Families welcome, and anglers of all ages and experience levels will have a good time.

Contact Info:

Fishbuster Charters, Inc.
Bonita Beach
Bonita Springs, FL 34134
Phone: 239-947-1688
Alt. Phone: 239-947-1688
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