West Central Florida Lake & River Fishing

Great Freshwater Fishing Awaits In Central West Florida

COUNTIES: Hernando, Pasco, Pinellas, Hillsborough

POPULAR CITIES: St. Pete/Clearwater, New Port Richey, Tarpon Springs, Tampa, Brooksville

The West Central region is home to Florida's largest open-water estuary, Tampa Bay, extending over 400 miles and forming coastlines in three counties.

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Seasonal Forecasts

Florida's freshwater fisheries comprise more than 7,500 lakes, ponds and reservoirs, and approximately 12,000 miles of fishable rivers, streams and canals—with no closed seasons. The recreational fishery resources alone in these waters provide entertainment for more than 1.2 million anglers annually.

For general information on what lakes are available in an area by ZIP code or city, check out TakeMeFishing.org's fishing site finder.

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Wildlife Management Areas

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) oversees more than 6 million acres of land established as wildlife management areas or wildlife and environmental areas. These lands, managed for both conservation and recreation, are more rugged than parks and have fewer developed amenities. You can find out more about the stewardship of these lands and the wide range of recreation they offer through our alphabetical listing or our map.

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Fish Management Areas

A Fish Management Area (FMA) is a pond, lake or other body of water established for the management of freshwater fish as a partnership effort with a local cooperator. The FWC's Division of Freshwater Fisheries manages about 80 water bodies throughout the state that are designated as Fish Management Areas. In many cases, these lakes are stocked with channel catfish, largemouth bass or sunshine bass. Automatic fish feeders and fish attractors concentrate sportfish for bank anglers.

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State Parks

The first four-time winner of the Gold Medal honoring the nation's best state park system, the Florida Park Service is one of the largest in the country with 175 state parks, trails and historic sites spanning nearly 800,000 acres and 100 miles of sandy white beach.

View Statewide Map - Click Fishing under activities and zoom in

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Fish Species

Florida's freshwater fisheries comprise 3 million acres of lakes, ponds and reservoirs, and approximately 12,000 miles of fishable rivers, streams and canals-with no closed seasons. Learn more about what you might catch!

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