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I've heard you can catch them in about 20-25 feet of water, but I've never really fished outside of the Mosquito Lagoon. How big of a boat do you need to get out that far? Would a 17ft. Carolina Skiff make it?
 

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no. a skiff won't make it past the 3rd breakers.
we fish for groupers on 80-150 ft of water. we usually take the charter off port canaveral and sebastian. $75 gets you free lunch + beer, fishing is from 8-5. If you're going, make sure your reservation would be at the back of the boat that way you can also troll.
 

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You can find some inshore in the ICW at the base of bridges and pilings.
 

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I've heard you can catch them in about 20-25 feet of water, but I've never really fished outside of the Mosquito Lagoon. How big of a boat do you need to get out that far? Would a 17ft. Carolina Skiff make it?
Interesting question Vulcanized, and since I don't know much about offshore fishing, I decided to call my friend who's a charter captain and who's been fishing here in Florida all his life.

Big variable is where you are in Florida. In NE Florida, he says you need to go out 9 to 55 miles, and get in 65-70 feet of water, and find some structure. Up here you look for limerock ledges to find the fish, but he says in central Florida, there are no limerock ledges. So you need to find some other structure, of the manmade type.

I also noticed that you were getting some bad info on your commercial fishing license question in another forum, so I asked him about that too.

To sell fish in Florida, you need a Commercial Saltwater Products license. But you can't sell fish to restaurants (grouper/snapper), you can only sell to a licensed seafood wholesaler.

Getting a commercial license for grouper/snapper may be a bit complicated. The way he explained it, there are none available (all gone). So you have to buy one from somebody that already has one. He said the last time he looked into a grouper/snapper license, the program worked like this; you had to buy two existing licenses, and then let one expire to use the other one. He said that when he looked, the only two he found available were for sale for $16K and $23K.

He's not sure that that program is still in effect, but suggests that you check with FWC to find out what the current regulations are.

I looked at commercial regulations myself a while back, and you'd have to be a Philidelphia lawer to understand them all, but I can tell you for a fact there are definitly hook/line commercial fisherman in Florida. If I was reading things right, depends on what kind of fish you're after what kind of license you need.

Again, check with FWC. Those guys get paid to know the rules. Hope that helps, and thanks for giving me a reason to talk to my buddy on the phone about fishing for an hour or so.

Can you go out 55 miles in a Carolina Skiff? Sure you can, but I'm not going with you :)
 

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17ft carolina Skiff

I've heard you can catch them in about 20-25 feet of water, but I've never really fished outside of the Mosquito Lagoon. How big of a boat do you need to get out that far? Would a 17ft. Carolina Skiff make it?
If it's the newer V hull version your chances are ok-if its the Bath tub design ...Slim!

Those things are great in a lake or pond not the ocean especially if things get soupy Poor rough water ability. which they can even on a nice day.

There is no keel so it wont track that well in heavy surf not to mention if you get a cross wind.
(Stick to trolling for Cobia/Kings off the beach go out and come back before noon May till august thats the rule of thumb. )

I had a 17ft Kenner pro skiff pretty much same hull design.

Put it this way i have more faith in my 13'6 Whaler it handled 5ft whitcaps in the Keys
Came back with a few inches of water but did not sink.
 

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Maybe a mile but often alot less. You can find them around the buoy line out of Canaveral.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
how big of a boat do you need to catch some Cobia? I wouldn't mind upgrading if I need to.

I'm trying to get my commercial seafood license and sell some local fish to local restaurants.
 

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You can get cobia nearshore in a small boat, even a Carolina skiff. I caught one with my friend just past the breakers at Cocoa once.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Yeah I might as well stick with a Carolina Skiff, its a j16 by the way, seems like the most practical boat if i want something I can run skinny in, catch some cobia, and even have room to gig flounder and have a shrimp net.
 
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