Bait & Tackle Shops

Get your gear, guides and good information from the people who know, before you go.

Artificial or live baits work well. Live bait is, of course, the best. Some are easy to catch yourself. You can catch sand fleas on the beach with your bare hands, or a cast net will catch you sardines and pinfish, which are both excellent baits. Shrimp is the most common bait and can be purchased frozen or live from all bait and tackle stores. Artificial lures range from soft plastic jigs to wooden plugs. A lot of lures that are used in the north for bass and walleye are just as productive on snook and redfish along the Suncoast. Spoons and jigs that work on bluefish, along the upper east coast, work just as well on bluefish and mackerel in our waters. Top water plugs are a great lure to use. There is something about seeing a fish making a push (a bulge in the water) toward your lure and having an explosion where your lure used to be that will make your knees shake every time.

You do not need elaborate tackle to fish the Suncoast. Eight- to 10-pound spinning tackle will land you just about any type of fish you may encounter in the bays and Gulf. The trick to fishing the clear waters of Sarasota Bay is to have as little terminal (at the end of the line) tackle as possible. A swivel can be seen by most fish very easily. On the end of the line, tie a very light 3/0 long shank wire hook. The long shank keeps toothy critters from biting through your leader. If weight is needed, use a small split shot sinker, adding another if necessary. Big fish can be landed on light tackle if you remember not to horse the fish to the boat, but to take your time and let the fish fight the rod, keeping your drag loose. As long as there are no obstructions for the fish to swim around, you have all the time in the world to enjoy the fight. Most fish are lost trying to get them to the boat too fast.

Check It Out!

Anglers Image Inc.
Sarasota FL
Phone: 800-858-0903

BJ Bait and Tackle
482 Blackburn Pt.Rd
Venice FL
Phone: 941-966-6162

Cannon's Marina
6040 Gulf of Mexico Dr.
Longboat Key Florida
Phone: 941-383-1311

CB's Saltwater Outfitters
1249 Stickney Point Rd.
Sarasota Florida 34242
Phone: 941-349-4400

Cook's Sportland
Eric or Malcolm
4419 Tamiami Trail South
Venice Florida
Phone: 941-493-0025

Archery & Accessories, Camping Equipment, Clothing: Camoflage and Western, Canoes & Kayak sales, Fishing Tackle, Golf, Guns & Ammo, Shuffleboard

Dockside Marine
1265 Old Stickney Pt. Rd
5701 S. Tamiami Trl
Sarasota Florida
Phone: 941-349-4326

Donna Bay Bait and Tackle
243 Tamiami Tr. S
Venice FL
Phone: 941-488-7750

Economy Tackle
6018 S. Tamiami Trl.
Sarasota Florida
Phone: 941-922-9671

Englewood Bait House
1450 Beach Rd
Englewood FL
Phone: 941-475-4511

At the Tom Adams Bridge for forty years.
On the ICW between markers 22 and 24.
VHF Channel 16

Fisherman's Wharf Bait and Tackle
505 Tamiami Tr. N
Venice FL
Phone: 941-485-2030

Gulf Wind Bait & Tackle
1485 Tamiami Trl. S.
Venice Florida

Hart's Landing
920 John Ringling Blvd
Sarasota Florida
Phone: 941-955-0011

McHugh's Bait and Tackle
480 Dearborn W
Englewood FL
Phone: 941-473-1591

New Pass Bait Shop
Ken Thompson Pkwy
Sarasota Florida
Phone: 941-388-3050

Stump Pass Lighthouse
260 Maryland Ave
Englewood FL
Phone: 941-697-2206

The Bait Shop at Donna Bay
504 Tamiami Tr. S
Venice FL
Phone: 941-485-0822

Venice Beach
101 The Esplanade
Venice Florida
Phone: 941-861-5000

875 feet of developed sandy beach, located one mile west of U.S. 41 on Venice Avenue West at the Gulf of Mexico. Wonderful spot to find prehistoric shark teeth and other fossilized material. If you are looking for live “Jaws,” there is a coral reef about a quarter-mile offshore. Parking, restrooms, showers, picnic tables, volleyball courts, lifeguard station all year, group facilities, handicap facilities, public transportation drop off/pick up.

Venice Quality Tackle
1486 Tamiami Tr. S.
Venice FL
Phone: 941-488-4404

Wholesale Tackle Outlet
The Dome Flea Market
State Road 776
Venice FL
Phone: 941-474-0732

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