I’ve been blessed to have the pleasure of teaching my eleven year old daughter the beginnings of fly fishing in our backyard, here in Southwest Florida. While enjoying the beautiful weather and watching my daughter wear out a fly rod while giving her a few words of encouragement , I noticed the first signs of spring. A blossom on a poinciana tree starting to form among its new green leaves. I thought back to the “old captains ” who told me stories about seasons of fishing based on animals, insects, and foliage.
When I was eleven, I remember a time driving from Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo to Naples with my father in the spring. We ran into a swarm of love bugs that would have grounded a 747 airliner. My father’s station wagon looked like it was wearing mascara as we roared up to the dock. For three hours he had explained to me that the importance of these insects and that in the spring time, this was a tell or hint of a Kingfish migration. He also let me know that I would be shining spoons and rigging gear for an hour while we rode south to the fish . For the next two days while fishing with him off the coast , I also learned what a boat full of Kingfish looked like.
When it comes to fishing you can learn a lot more if you slow down and look around. Take time in your journeys of pursuing fish to look around in your environment . The blossom of flowers the annoyance of insects in this Floridian paradise all mean something . Fishing is a learned skill that can be taught and mastered . Observation of nature is a gift that requires a lifetime to learn and may never be mastered . When you bring a child fishing they ask all the right questions, and often can see the beauties of nature better than adults.
Spring will come to Boca Grande and the waters of Charlotte Harbor once again, and the fishing will be great ; Kingfish, Spanish Mackerel, Cobia, and the Reef fish are some of my favorites this time of year. The weather in spring is a favorite as well with robin egg blue skies, cerulean waters offshore, the dry air, sunshine all day, and cool nights. These are just some signs of the springtime paradise, I call home.