Panama City Beach provides unique and time worthy fishing for both inshore and offshore waterways. The month of February in Panama City Beach provides some great opportunities for anglers to target speckled trout and sheepshead in the inshore areas, as well as mingo/vermillion snapper and scamp offshore. As water temperatures continue to increase with spring on the horizon, opportunities to catch these fish will continue to improve.
Many inshore fishermen have found the speckled trout fishing in the Panama City Beach area has become increasingly productive in the first part of 2022. Consequently, it is expected to remain strong through both January and February. While a variety of both natural and artificial baits have proven to be effective, many inshore fishermen find Berkeley Gulp! Shrimp are the next best alternative to fresh live shrimp. However, Sheepshead have not been as consistent in recent weeks. The current consensus is that as the cold water is slowly replaced by warmer temperatures, inshore fisherman should focus on canals, bayous, and the mouth of rivers around the Panama City Beach area. Generally speaking, inshore fishermen will want to focus on structures in areas north of the Highway 98 bridge in Grand Lagoon and North Bay. Due to the number of marinas and boat traffic in the area south of the Highway 98 bridge, the areas north have a lesser amount of fishing pressure. Additionally, more residential focused areas provide shallower water and more residential structure for the trout and sheepshead to search for their preferred bait. Fishing in this environment provides an excellent opportunity for smaller groups and families to get out on the water with an inshore guide to experience quality and accessible fishing in Panama City Beach during this normally colder and slower time of the year.
Similarly, on Panama City Beach offshores waterways, mingo/vermillion snapper and scamp fishing have been productive. In this case, these fish are seen in state waters to the dop off. Consistently, the use of a two hook drop rig with a combination of cut squid and northern mackerel. As always, fresh live or cut up freshly caught bait will yield better results. However, these live baits can be more difficult to find this time of year in the Panama City Beach area. Fortunately, Marinas and Bait shops in the area should have plenty of frozen squid and mackerel that anglers should make sure they have on hand. As a result, it would be worthwhile to target smaller bait fish such as croakers and finger mullet around bridges, as well as rocks and buoys around the pass. Consequently, these fishing expeditions are ideal for larger groups that are looking to have a great time with an Offshore Charter.
Piers and Beaches
Late February in Panama City Beach brings the beginnings of excellent surf fishing off the piers and beaches. The most desired for anglers in February is the arrival of Pompano. Though they will be an occasional catch as they start to arrive to Panama City Beach waterways, the tackle of choice would be your standard pompano rigs using cut shrimp or sliced sections of Fish Bites. Furthermore, you can expect some whiting, redfish, and black snapper to be in the mix as well. Although the sheepshead have been slower this year, black snapper can be found around the Highway 98, Grand Lagoon, and Tyndall-Dupont bridges. Recently, Carolina rigs with live or frozen shrimp on a small hook are producing the most fish.