Everyone dreams of catching a big fish. Shark fishing in Gulf Shores can be one of the most exciting fishing charters you can take while on vacation along our gulf coast. Sharks are out there but are not as easy to catch as you can imagine. You would think a chum line like you see in the movies will attract monsters sharks. The opposite is true. We catch most of our Bull Sharks on Alabama's artificial reefs while bottom fishing. One think for sure, when you get hooked up on a big bull, you are in for a fight of a lifetime. Sharks are heavy and require brute strength and time to get them to the surface. They fight hard every time on traditional tackle.
Bull Sharks are one of the most common sharks found in Alabama salt water. Bull Sharks are known by scientists as Carcharhinus leucas. My friend Chuck Anderson calls them man eaters. Chuck was attacked about 8 years ago in the surf, swimming at 0630 am in front of the city of Gulf Shores. Bull Sharks are mean and very aggressive. They do not normally attack humans, but they will bite you if you are in the water where they are feeding or around a school of bait fish. The best time to catch Bull Sharks is in the early morning, night or evening. They are not good to eat like everyone says. However, the Mako Shark is a good eating shark. They are a fun, catch and release fish. Most bull sharks are less than 10 feet in length. They have a broad body and thick shoulders and a blunt nose. Their dorsal fin begins in the middle of their pectoral or horizontal stabilizer fins. When they are young, their fins are black. When they become adults, they turn gray.
Bull Sharks swim along the gulf shores early in the morning and late in the evening. They normally do not bother humans. However, I have a friend named Chuck Anderson from our area that had his arm removed by a Bull Shark back in June of 2001, while swimming just after daylight out past the second sand bar. You should never swim in the late evening or early in the morning because that is a time when sharks feed on bait fish. Err to caution and swim during bright daylight hours to avoid being confused as bait. Charter boat guides are responsible and we do not chum up fish or fish for sharks along the beaches of Alabama. It is against the law.
The most common place to catch big Bull Sharks is offshore on large Public Reefs. The best time of the day to catch Bull Sharks is during the early morning or late in the evening. Bull Sharks bite any big, bloody, bulky bait. We use mostly heavier traditional tackle to handle these monster fish. Light tackle will handle some smaller sharks but it is tough to handle the big ones that weigh over 300 pounds. The problem is the time it takes to fight them. If you are fighting a Bull Shark late in the evening, you could end up fighting the fish late into the night.
Blacktip Sharks are very common in the waters off of Perdido Pass, and Orange Beach, Alabama. Scientist calls them Carcharihinus limbatus. We call them Black Tips. They are awesome to see. We catch them right off the pass in the waters that run out of the bay with the tide change. They can be caught early in the morning and late in the evenings. They are dark blue to gray on their sides and back. They have a white belly. They do have a black tip on their fins. Most of them are less than 8 feet in length. The average size we catch in Orange Beach is about 6 feet and 90 to 110 pounds.
Blacktip’s are a fun shark to catch during the summer charter fishing season on our 4 hour trips. We head out late in the afternoon and sit with the outgoing tide just south of Perdido Pass, Alabama. The tide line is usually very pronounced and the water color difference is significant. You will help us put out a line with a balloon on it to help suspend the bait off the bottom of the pass. We drift along until the Blacktip shark comes along and hits the bait. The balloon starts running quickly along the surface of the saltwater. When the time is right, you will set the hook and start fighting your Blacktip shark. Most of these fish are fought on traditional tackle. However, if we have enough time during the charter, let us know and we will put light tackle out there so you can have a fight of a lifetime.
Spinner Sharks are extremely common and are often confused with Blacktip Sharks. They are called Carcharhinus brevioinna by scientists. These sharks look Blacktips but their anal fin is black tipped. Most of them are less than 9 feet. When you hook a spinner, they will run like crazy and jump out of the water and spin like a ballet dancer. They are awesome to see and fun to fight. The food quality is not that great.
Remora Shark Sucker is one of the most docile fish you will see while reef fishing in Gulf Shores waters. These funny looking fish have a sucker pad on top of their head. They look like an oval shaped tennis shoe tread with vents that open and shut. The sucker disc that is located on top of the Remora’s head is used to attach themselves to Shark, Snapper, Cobia, Whale Sharks, etc. They are a cleaner fish. They eat the scraps that other fish leave behind after feeding. They have a broad black stripe on their sides and have a white strip below it. They are common in all the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. There are two species that we see. One is the Remora and is called Remora remora and the Sharksucker is called Echeneis naucrates. The food quality is poor and they do not have a lot of meat on them. We play with them a lot and stick them to the wall or to our legs to show how strong the suction is. They are harmless but they do offer a good fight. They are usually caught on the top of the water just beside the charter boat.
Be sure to contact us directly by filling out our online reservations page after you have chosen the best fishing charter for you on our rates and pricing page. After you have submitted your request online, you may call us direct at 251.975.8111 and give us a credit card number to secure your trip. Remember, we do not require a deposit. You may pay the day of your fishing charter.
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