Fish to Catch in Miami, Florida

Miami deserves every bit of its “Magic City” title. It features wondrous views, breath-taking attractions, mouthwatering food, and marvelous fish. If you’re visiting Miami, Florida Fishing Charters, you’re probably wondering about the best fish to catch in Miami.

As you may have already guessed, there’s plenty of fish to keep you busy. You can come after delectable fish like mackerel, grouper, snapper, tuna, and seatrout. Alternatively, you can challenge yourself with fierce game fish like bass, permit, snook, barracuda, amberjack, redfish, tarpon, wahoo, bonefish, sailfish, and tilefish.


Miami features a large supply of amberjack year-round. However, the best time for amberjack fishing is in May, August, September, and October. You’ll usually find them in wrecks and reefs.

The smallest of these fish weigh 15 to 40 pounds, but Miami catches average at 60 to 80 pounds. On the other hand, amberjack weighing more than 100 pounds also exist, and they can grow up to 6 feet tall. 


Barracuda are fierce sea beasts that pack rows of sharp teeth on enormous jaws. They throw mighty strikes when hooked, and they can be quite forceful and destructive.

Fishing enthusiasts often hunt barracuda in Miami to test their strength. Since Miami’s waters are warm, plenty of barracuda hang around its shallow waters.


Known to be among Miami’s fiercest game fish, bass reign over Miami’s canals and rivers. You’ll also find them near underwater structures, rocks, or bridge pilings. Largemouth bass and peacock bass are common, and both are valued as great and aggressive fighters.

Largemouths can weigh as little as 1 to 5 pounds and as heavy as 17 pounds. Meanwhile, peacock bass grows 10 to 36 inches in length depending on its subspecies. 


Bonefish aren’t your usual game fish since catching them requires patience, swiftness, accuracy, and a good strategy. They’re slender, fast, and ghostly, so they appeal to only certain fishing enthusiasts.

Miami’s bonefish are 4 to 6 pounds on average, but the heaviest recorded bonefish catch in Florida weighed 16 pounds. Generally, these fish hang around in flats and shallow waters less than a foot deep. 


Dolphinfish are a sight to behold with their bright green and blue colors. They’re also excellent fighters, and they tend to showcase marvelous aerial displays alongside forceful pulls when caught.

Best of all, they’re a pleasure to eat. Their firm white meat tastes mild and slightly sweet, which is perfect when paired with light herbs and spices or cooked on its own.

You can find plenty of dolphinfish in Miami from April to August and until October.


Black, red, goliath, and gag groupers reign over Miami’s waters. Black, red, and gag groupers are often 5 to 20 pounds on average, while goliath groupers are 75 to 150 pounds.

You’ll spot them nearshore, inshore, offshore, or by flats and reefs. 


Mackerel are flavorful fish, and Miami is abundant with them. You’ll often find mackerel around wrecks and reefs, nearshore, and offshore. They’re usually in schools, so they’re easy to spot.

On average, the king mackerel weighs 10 to 20 pounds.


Permit in Miami had a record of 56 pounds as the largest catch, but they’re usually only 10 to 30 pounds. Not much is known about permit except they’re excellent gamefish.

You can find plenty of them nearshore, inshore near grass flats, around reefs, or offshore near structures. They start spawning in early summer and fall. 


Redfish are on a catch-and-release order at the moment, but they’re still fun to catch. These lovelies are also called rat red, drums, bull red, or channel basss. They weigh 10 to 12 pounds on average, but the heaviest redfish caught in Florida was 52 pounds.

You’ll spot them in shallow flats, grassy shorelines, rocky places, and by shell bars.


Sailfish are powerful and swift acrobats that usually grow 4 to 5 feet long and even as tall as 11 feet. The biggest sailfish caught in Florida only weighed 126 pounds, but sailfish can reach 220 pounds. However, the average weight of a sailfish is around 40 to 60 pounds.

Fishing enthusiasts often aim for sailfish just to catch them and then release them. Sailfish season doesn’t close, but the best time for sailfish fishing is in January to March offshore and September to November. Meanwhile, April is considered as Miami’s low sailfish season.


Miami’s seatrout hang out in shallow waters, shell reefs, grass flatlands, marshes, and mangroves. They’re usually 1 to 6 pounds and 8 to 9 inches, but they can grow up to 39 inches long.

You’ll see plenty of them from June to August, but seatrout spawning season starts in March and ends in November.


Five subspecies of snook reign over Miami’s waters: the tarpon snook, common snook, small-scale fat snook, large scale fat snook, and swordspine snook. They weigh 3 to 15 pounds but can reach up to 50 pounds and 48 inches. 

Inlets and estuaries are the best spots for snook fishing in Miami from April to September. After that, you can find them in rivers and piers.


Miami features mangrove snappers, yellowtail snappers, and mutton snappers. They’re found inshore, in backcountries, and around reefs.

Mangrove snappers are 1 to 3 pounds, yellowtail snappers weigh 1 to 5 pounds, and mutton snappers reach 5 to 25 pounds. 


If you’ve found sailfish as acrobatic, tarpon is even more so. It can jump up to 8 feet above water as it rattles its gills when hooked. It’s sometimes dubbed as sabalo, silver sides, or silver king.

On average, Miami’s tarpon are 25 to 80 pounds. However, the heaviest catch recorded for tarpon in Florida was 243 pounds. You’ll see plenty of these fish from May to July, but they start spawning as early as February to as late as September to November.


Tilefish are aplenty in Miami, but they’re often at least 400 feet below the water. This makes it hard to fish for them. 


Yellowfish tuna, skipjack tuna, and bluefin tuna swarm Miami’s waters. Yellowfish weighs 15 to 150 pounds, skipjack falls on 18 to 221 pounds, and bluefin is 200 to 600 pounds. However, Florida’s largest tuna was 827 pounds.

These fish can swim as fast as 43 miles per hour, and they usually stay deep within the waters.


Wahoo in Miami weigh 15 to 40 pounds, but Florida’s heaviest wahoo catch was 139 pounds. These fish can grow up to 98 inches, and they’re often caught offshore.

Why Fishing Charters are Important

Fishing Charters, such as Miami, Florida Fishing Charters, allow you to commence on a fishing adventure with ease. By reaching out to a charter, you’re ensuring you’ll be armed with the best fishing equipment, finest fishing guide, and be in the most optimal spots to catch the fish you’re after.

More importantly, you’ll gain a wonderful experience that’ll last you a lifetime.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

We’ll be more than happy to help our fellow fishing enthusiasts.

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