Let’s go fishin’ now!

April, 10, 2015

Busy time but awesome fishing. Our waters are crystal clear and fish are biting. We are catching all the king mackerel we want to and it is exciting action. It’s so awesome to hear them scream line of my Cabo 40s. They bend our poles and put big smiles on client’s faces. There are a few cobia and permit available too. Outside action is hot.

Inside action is fine but there is a lot of folks fishing Charlotte Harbor and Lemon Bay right now. I’m staying outside when I can. The trout action is good with some nice fish and a few fat Spanish mackerel mixed in too. Baitfish are here; but the gumbo, messy grass is a nightmare.

Some tarpon have cruised through but nothing steady yet. Some good action if you time it right. I’m busy and thankful. Don’t procrastinate or I’ll be glad to hook you up with a qualified friend. Thank you. Captain Van

Great weather and fishing is awesome!

April 1, 2015. It’s the busiest year I’ve ever seen we have been discovered and it wonderful to be able to share a day on our waters with visitors. The catches are varied as are the trips. we have had some big king mackerel lots of smaller Spanish when we find them. There are a lot of boats in the back country but we did enjoy a red hot snook bite last Friday; it is not dependable but do enjoy some good days.

The family trips are fun and  productive. We catch whatever is biting and let the youngsters enjoy their special day. We catch mackerel, snapper, trout, and fun fish with a few pompano for dinner. the smiles are priceless don’t forget the cameras. Please get your reservations ASAP or I can help you find a friend qualified to help you enjoy our Boca Grande to Venice fishing. PS a few tarpon are already showing up south of us; they will be here soon. Got to go the fish are biting! Captain Van


VVenice fishing improves with ever warm day.

2015, February, 19th. Fishing is bouncing around as much as our weather.

We certainly can’t complain about cold here with the ice box everyone else is enduring. It has been chilly by our standards recently. The fish are as confused as we are. We’ve enjoyed some good action on the warmer days. It’s predicted to get back into the mid-seventies for Sunday; Spring should arrive down here in Venice soon. March is almost here and bookings are looking good for me; so please make your reservations ASAP! The grandchildren are coming and we both want to share time of our beautiful Charlotte Harbor waters with them. Family trips are my favorite; smiling kids are the best.

Trout and pompano were providing some fine fun and great eating before the cold weather shut us down. Weather warms up as fast as it chills so we will back at it this weekend. Sheepshead are hungry and will turn on as soon as we can get to them on the near-shore Gulf reef system. The structures are scattered from Boca Grande south, up past Venice Beach in about forty feet of water from three to seven miles out. They also hold some cobia, snapper, and flounder frequently. When waters warm back up into the seventies the migratory mackerel, sharks and so forth will travel into our waters. We have fish now and it will improve every time it warms up until Summer.

I’m very excited about the next few months fishing. March and April the Spanish Mackerel are due; fast, fun, tasty, and abundant. The action frequently gets too fast to keep up with. Their larger cousins the kingfish will move in and scream our drags. The Spanish run up to five pounds and kings usually average about twenty!  Sharks actually become a problem many days because they can be hard to get away from. They even chew up some of our mackerel. Everything follows the baitfish schools. We just watch for local water temps to reach about seventy degrees.

Snook fishing opens in March and usually picks up at about seventy-five degree water temps mid-month. We need those minnow schools for bait to turn on snook. Englewood’s Ski Alley was off last year and I’m anxious to see how we do this summer. We usually get good snook action off Venice beaches about May. Tarpon will begin to move into Boca Grande in late April to early May and peak in June.

Life is treating me well so far; I’m looking forward to seeing old friends and meeting new ones as our season progresses. Lots of good things happening in fishery management and the future outlook is good too. Thank you, Captain Van Hubbard

Let’s go fishin’ soon.

Fishing blog for February 2015. Captain Van Hubbard

We have enjoyed good fishing action on most trips recently. This last week was cooler than previous and it did slow things down some. We have had some nice pompano and a mixed bag to go with it. This is down with Doc’s Goofy Jigs sweetened with a tip it of fresh shrimp. We drift on still days and anchor if our drift is too fast. This is casting and bouncing along the bottom to entice bites. We have been catching Spanish Mackerel, trout, ladyfish, a few sheepshead and variety of pole benders. We move around a lot to try and keep up with moving fish. The scenery is awesome with dolphin actually becoming a nuisance because they are always hounding us.  Some folks are obviously feeding them since they hang around so much. We frequently see manatees and a lot of other wildlife to enjoy.

I’m expecting the sheepshead bite to improve dramatically after this Full Moon. Our winter has been very mild and this seems to be setting the sheepshead run back a couple of weeks. They are just starting to show up around the flats edges and near passes. As they bunch up they get aggressive and are much easier to catch. While these may not be a glamor fish they are fun to catch and very good eating. Nice white flaky filets. We frequently stop by the Stump Pass grille to fry some up after our trips. That’s really fresh fish.

It won’t be long before our kids start getting out for Spring Break and Easter Vacations. It’s time to set up your reservations so you can be sure we get to share a day on our beautiful waters. These experiences are exciting and memorable.   Family time on the water is always remembered as we get busy with everything else. Just think about your childhood fishing experiences and smile.

Snook and tarpon will be back in our picture from Venice to Boca Grande, before you know it so don’t procrastinate on those reservations either. We have some awesome mackerel fishing as the Spring migrations cruise by Venice Beaches, starting in March. The sharks will be following along and hungry if you want bigger bites. On your line of course. While we think it’s chilly now when it gets into the 40s friends from the north just laugh and hope they see these temps for highs.

Please check out and like the Facebook Captain Van Hubbard pages plus our links to Trip Advisor too. Thank you all and Let’s go Fishin’ soon. Captain Van

Merry Christmas from Captain Van Hubbard.


          We are into the Holidays already; please find time for friends and family to share outside too. Life is so busy for many of us, it seems impossible to find the time we need to keep up, much less play. Quality of life is what life is about making your time count; share family time now. Time at meals and inside is fine but nothing compares to a family outing of boating and fishing. Don’t put the emphasis on catching keep it focused on fun.  Let the birds and dolphin entertain you. Watch the kids and guests smile as they encounter all the treasures Mother Nature shows us.

          It is important to consider weather as you plan your outings because she can dramatically alter trip plans. We enjoy awesome weather about half of the Winter season here but the other half can be cold to us. Also consider that we freeze at 50 degrees and our Northern friends are in shorts smiling. We do want to miss the rainy periods but they are actually rare now anyway.

          If you going boating be sure that your guide understands you desire. Communication is critical to your satisfaction. If the operator doesn’t clearly understand your wants it’s not easy to accomplish them! This sounds simple just clearly spell out your perfect trip and let us try to put it together. The fish catching part can be challenging but not impossible if you are realistic. Let us know if you want to go out into the Gulf or stay into the inside waters. We can cruise Lemon Bay or run south into Charlotte Harbor for more natural surroundings. But we are not always great mind readers so please help both of us.

          Fish species available now usually include trout, redfish, ladyfish, sheepshead, pompano and many other possibilities. We can target something or try for the most action. Everyday is unique and some day’s fish bite great, others they keep their mouths shut too much. We can always find something fun to enjoy. Make the best of whatever we encounter and smile a lot; you could be back at work.

          We all want to purchase the best gift we can for loved ones; your time is the most precious gift you can offer. Share it freely with family and friends now! If you are purchasing things try to be sure they are suitable for the recipient? We have many specific styles and types of fish and fishing it’s hard to match their needs. Take them with you shopping and give them your budget to select something they will use. While this lacks the Christmas morning factor it is shared time enjoying each others company; that folks is what we want? Don’t forget the literal gift we all received and be thankful for all our blessings.

          You can purchase a gift trip to be used at a later date if you desire. Email and we’ll work the details out; that’s the entire commercial I’ll do. Thank you all for your support and shard time together. Please have a Merry Christmas and safe journeys. Captain Van Hubbard/Venice Fishing Charters.

Captain Van Hubbard

P.O. Box 146
Placida, FL 33946



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