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Pensacola Fishing Report July 2023*

Pensacola Fishing Report July 2023*

Welcome back Gulf Coast Sportsmen to another fishing report for July 2023 in Pensacola, FL. July in the Pensacola marks the downward turn to the end of open Red Snapper season, moving to weekend openings only in the month of August.  Weather conditions have been varying and should be monitored in the area when Gulf Coast Sportsmen are planning their excursions. Let’s get out there!


In Pensacola, FL the inshore fishing has been good. Targeted fish will continue to be redfish, trout, and sheepshead.  On the grass beds stick with topwater lures in the morning and evening, and live bait under a popping cork with just enough leader to let a live or frozen shrimp sit just above the grass. Around docks and bridges, live or frozen shrimp can produce reds, or use cut pieces of shrimp on smaller hooks to target sheepshead. 

Nearshore and Offshore

Nearshore and offshore has been consistent in the Pensacola area. Again, much like other surrounding areas, anglers will continue to target red snapper as the season moves to weekends at the end of the month.  Live bait remains the best option but if conditions make finding live bait difficult, sportsmen can use frozen cut bait from any bait shop in the area.  Additionally, vermillion snapper have been plentiful and almost always with take a presentation of cut up squid on two hook drop rigs.  Don’t be surprised if some triggers are caught as well. If you find grass patches or any other floating object, be sure to scan the area for some mahi. Plenty of “chicken” dolphin have been caught, only meaning they are relatively smaller mahi.  They will hit a variety of lures and free lined bait and tend to frenzy. You can fill the box quickly. Also, much like mentioned in our Destin report (link destin report) amberjack has been closed until September, significantly shortening the opening for amberjack. Be sure to book an offshore charter to take advantage of the great opportunities in the Pensacola area. 

Beaches and Piers 

Beaches and piers in the area have seen a decent amount of tarpon, king mackerel, whiting and redfish. Sadly, there remains a lot of grass in the area making beach fishing potentially difficult. However, if clean water is found, live finger mullet, and menhaden will attract redfish and whiting patrolling the areas between the sandbars. Fish bites are another good option for some remaining pompano and whiting again. One thing to note is that the Pensacola Beach Air Show was earlier in the month. With events like this, anglers are best avoiding the area around the air shows due to a significant increase in boat traffic that makes fishing very difficult. 

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