Peacock Bass Fishing in Florida: A Short Guide

Studying Time: 6 minutes

In relation to fishing in Florida, there’s quite a bit to say. Nonetheless, if you happen to’re after an unique journey, Peacock Bass fishing is one thing that shouldn’t be missed. The species are native to South America however have been launched to Florida’s waters within the ’80s. They’re a fantastic and brutally sturdy freshwater sport fish.

Over time, they’ve tailored to their new dwelling, and have earned their place within the hearts of native anglers. In the present day, they’re an iconic a part of South Florida’s fishing scene. So let’s get began with all you have to learn about this gorgeous fish!

Peacock Bass 101

The Peacock Bass originates from South America, particularly the Amazon and Orinoco river basins. Despite the fact that they resemble Black Bass, they don’t belong to the identical household. Peacock Bass come from the household of cichlids, the identical as Tilapia.

They have been dropped at Florida to struggle the invasive Oscar and Tilapia. The fish have shortly tailored to their new environment they usually began consuming up their invasive family, with out threatening different native populations.

There are someplace round 15 totally different species of Peacock Bass. The commonest one within the US is the Butterfly Peacock Bass, which is normally the anglers’ goal. They’re very tasty, however attributable to conservation functions, native fishermen recommend releasing them to guard their numbers. We’ll dive into the specifics of fishing laws a bit later.

In relation to the scale of Peacock Bass, it extremely is dependent upon the kind of species. For instance, the Speckled Peacock Bass is the biggest one, and it could develop to measurement over 36 inches. Nonetheless, they haven’t been seen in Florida for over 16 years, and are unlawful to catch.

The smallest species is the Royal Peacock Bass, they usually can develop to a most size of 10 inches. The commonest species, the Butterfly Peacock Bass, is normally someplace between these sizes, and their weight varies from 6 to fifteen kilos. Don’t overlook that what they lack in measurement, they make up for in aggressive energy.

The Greatest Spots for Peacock Bass in Florida

There are lots of wonderful Peacock Bass fishing spots in Florida, particularly within the southern elements. The stretch from Palm Seaside County to Key Largo holds a variety of these feisty fish. You’ll additionally discover some actually good fishing grounds in Broward and Dade counties.

Let’s take a look at a number of the premier fishing spots you possibly can discover within the Sunshine State.


Once you e book a visit to Miami, Butterfly Peacock Bass fishing may not be the very first thing that pops into your thoughts. Nonetheless, in addition to nice instances on the seaside and superior events, Miami’s fishing grounds maintain a number of the finest fishing spots within the state.

Many anglers flock to the native canals to check their abilities out towards these sturdy fish. Snapper Creek and the Tamiami Canals System are a number of the finest spots in Miami to catch a Peacock Bass, and there are over 40 miles of fishing grounds to discover. The Peacock Bass normally hides round rocks and bridge pilings. You may as well discover them close to any underwater development.

Butterfly Peacock Bass love heat water, and the gentle local weather of South Florida is ideal for them to swim all 12 months spherical. You’ll be able to goal them throughout any season, however native guides recommend that the interval between March till the tip of Might is the perfect time to go after them. One other beauty of this fish is that they normally hunt through the day when there’s plenty of mild, so that you don’t should get out on the water too early.

West Palm Seaside

West Palm Seaside is understood for its wonderful fishing motion. For those who’re trying to catch a Peacock Bass, this city ought to already be in your listing! The freshwater canals surrounding the city are crammed with big fish. The native guides normally supply “unique species journeys,” the place you possibly can goal a spread of non-native species, comparable to Snakehead, Clown Knife Fish, and naturally, Peacock Bass.

The waters are generally too slender for boats, which means you possibly can take journeys on kayaks and even on foot. The Peacock Bass shares its dwelling with Largemouth Bass, making it an important spot for much more productive fishing.

Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale has so many wonderful angling alternatives that Peacock Bass fishing has solely just lately began to achieve recognition. Anglers are beginning to uncover the fishing potential of this unique fish and its feisty nature.

Fishing for this specimen in Fort Lauderdale is sweet all through the complete 12 months, however you’ll be particularly fortunate through the heat months. There are lots of fishing guides within the space focusing on fishing journeys for this South American fighter, they usually may help you take advantage of out of your journey. 


Fishing for Peacock Bass in Naples is very enjoyable for households. They don’t develop as massive as they do in different elements of the state, making them a bit simpler to catch. Their lovely colours will hook even probably the most novice anglers into fishing very quickly! For those who’re a professional fisherman, don’t fear – there are additionally some nice alternatives for you.

The waters across the metropolis are stuffed with this unique fish, and also you’ll be capable to catch plenty of them. The very best place to focus on them is the Golden Gate Canal System, and you may count on to come back throughout some Largemouth Bass as effectively. 

The Greatest Strategies to Hook a Large One

The very best methods to focus on Peacock Bass are with mild spinning or fly gear. They’re identified to obliterate life in waters they’re launched to, which means they’ll take quite a lot of totally different bait. Reside bait is their favourite, however in addition they like plugs, spoons, streamer flies, and popping bugs. Alternatively, they don’t like plastic worms.

Making this fish take your bait is the better half. As soon as they chunk, the occasion begins. Peacock Bass are generally known as “freshwater bullies” due to their aggressive looking and combating energy that generally damages the fishing gear. 

Do I would like a license?

Sure. For those who’re going after Peacock Bass, you will want a freshwater fishing license earlier than you head out on the water. You should purchase a Florida license on-line or at a variety of registered retailers, comparable to Walmart, a tax collector’s workplaces, and registered bait and deal with outlets. You may as well buy them over the cellphone at +1 (888) 347-4356. For extra details about Florida fishing licenses, take a look at our detailed information.

Can I preserve my catch?

Butterfly Peacock Bass is the most typical catch from the household, and it’s authorized to maintain two of those. Solely one among these two may be 17 inches or longer in whole size. They’re identified for his or her white, non-oily, Snapper-like style. Despite the fact that they make for good desk fare, many of the skilled anglers apply catch and launch fishing for conservation functions.

It’s unlawful to own or kill Speckled Peacock Bass attributable to their low quantity in Florida.

Be sure you at all times verify the newest updates on fishing laws earlier than you head out.

Peacock Bass Fishing in Florida is a Distinctive Expertise

Over the previous few years, fishing for Peacock Bass has change into very talked-about, and we are able to completely perceive why. Anglers who’ve focused them earlier than all agree on one factor – fishing for them is extremely enjoyable and memorable. Witnessing the acrobatic jumps of those aggressive fighters is one thing that draws anglers to come back again to Florida’s fishing grounds.

Have you ever ever fished for Peacock Bass in Florida? What’s your favourite fishing spot? Tell us within the feedback beneath!

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