May 2011- Deep Sea Fishing Forecast for Orange Beach, Alabama

May 1, 2011- Orange Beach, Alabama – It has been just over a year since the BP oil Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. The negative headlines absolutely destroyed our economy and fishing season for 2010. Our businesses came to a screaming halt last year but we vowed to fight back and not allow the bad news to harm us this year. Some Journalists dreams of winning a Pulitzer Prize by over sensationalizing and reporting the oil spill, cost some gulf coast residents and small businesses, their livelyhoods. However, our Orange Beach fishing charters vowed to fight back and began a nationwide marketing campaign in 2010, to restore faith in deep sea fishing on the Gulf of Mexico. We are now starting to see the positive results of our labor.

100 percent of all Federal fishing waters opened by April 20, 2011. That means that charter fishing boats can fish anywhere they want to in the Gulf of Mexico. The charter fishing business is back to normal on the Alabama Gulf Coast and our charters have raised the bar on customer service and have added many value added services to remain competitive. May 2011 is starting off above average for deep sea fishing year. We have seen an increase in bookings this year over the past two years. People are telling us that they want to go charter fishing and have some fun with their friends and family. The economy is the furthest thing on most of our customers minds right now. There have been some questions about the rising cost of fuel, but nobody is complaining about the fuel surcharge we had to implement. But even that has not deterred people from booking their summer fishing vacation in Orange Beach, Gulf Shores and Fort Morgan.

The Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Spring Break 2011 was a good indicator that tourist were hungry for some fresh seafood and wanted to experience some great deep sea fishing charters. All of our Orange Beach Fishing Charter fleet ran more trips than ever in 2011 than ever before. The weather pattern was calm, which gave our charter boats the opportunity to get a head start on the fishing season and generate enough revenue to really kick start the 2011 deep sea fishing season.

The fishing regulations has had an effect on the length of the fishing charters booked. We are seeing more requests for 6 hour trips booked than ever before. We are seeing quite a few full day charters booking through the month of May but not seeing request for June, July or August. This is mostly because people are changing their priorities and have become more conservation oriented about their deep sea fishing trips. They are also watching their expenses and feel a 6 hour charter is the best bang for the buck. We are seeing more people wanting to go deep sea fishing but not many want to keep more fish than they would eat for dinner.

2011 Federal Fishing Seasons and Bag Limits for the Gulf of Mexico

The fishing regulations have been announced by NOAA Fisheries for the 2011 season. Greater Amberjack has been severely overfished in the past and is currently open this month. Amberjack season will close June 1 and will reopen on August 1, 2011. This announcement has a lot of fishermen upset because June and July is when they did most of their long fishing trips where Amberjack is often the prize fish for the charter. What most people do not understand is that if NOAA Fisheries left the season open past May 2011, it would have closed anyway on or about June 14.

The Red Snapper season is going to be open June 1 and will remain open for approximately 48days or until July 19. The bag limit is going to be 2 fish per person and no captain and crew possession allowed. The Red Snapper fishery management plan is one of the most successful plans ever implemented in the Gulf of Mexico. We have more big Red Snappers now than we ever had in the past. Like it or not, NOAA Fisheries is being successful in their management of the Red Snapper species.

King Mackerel and Spanish Mackerel fishing is getting better every day in Orange Beach and Gulf Shores waters. The water temperature is about 75 degrees and we are seeing bait fish like Elwives and Baby Flying Fish everywhere now right off the beaches. It is our projection that the month of May will be extremely productive for trolling fishing.

Gag Grouper will remain closed until September 2011. However, Red Grouper and Scamp Grouper is open and that is a great fish to target on full day deep sea fishing charters during May and continue through the summer months. Gag has been severely overfished in the past. This fishery management plan is tough on us fishermen, but we all know it is the right thing to do in order for the stock to become sustainable in the future.

If you want to come fishing with Orange Beach Fishing Charters this May and catch some nice fish for supper, you need to book your deep sea fishing charter now. Weekends are filling up fast but we still have lots of week day trips available for you and your family fishing charter. Be sure to give us a call at 251.233.3474 or make your online fishing reservation with us.