Sheepshead provide great action and table fare in Sarasota!

Sheepshead are an unusual looking fish, easily distinguished by its vertical black stripes and human-looking teeth.  They will almost always be found near some type of submerged structure, eating crabs, barnacles, and other critters that live nearby.  In the past few years the deep rocky structure in Big Pass has provided outstanding sheepshead fishing from January through April.


Very few are caught by anglers on lures and they are notorious as bait-stealers.  Live shrimp, sand fleas, and fiddler crabs are the top baits.  They fight hard and are most plentiful in winter and early spring.  The bite can be very light and the lighter the tackle used the better.  They taste great but are difficult to clean due to their large spines and tough rib bones.

Sarasota sheepshead