Ask a Florida Sportsman.
Asked: At the Sebastian Inlet North Jetty, May 2017
Sebastian Inlet has long been among the best hotspots in Florida for nearshore superstars such as snook and redfish.
Located in Sebastian Inlet State Park about midway between Vero Beach and Melbourne Beach on State Road A1A, the North Jetty, South Jetty and bridge catwalks provide prime fishing opportunities.
Unfortunately, the popularity of Sebastian Inlet sometimes draws anglers who engage in bad manners or exercise poor judgment. The following jetty veterans provided observations about such problems and possible solutions.
What can be done to improve behavior and etiquette?
Andrew Sullivan, St. Cloud, jetty angler for 15 years: "Newcomers seldom know how to fish the currents and often end up crossing and tangling lines. The park should organize volunteer patrollers to oversee such things."
Joe McIntyre, Sebastian, jetty angler for 20 years: "I've had boaters troll so closely to the jetty that they've cut off my fishing line. Several signs should be posted on both sides of the jetties advising boaters to stay away."
Bill Sloniger, Mount Dora, jetty angler for 50 years: "If I'm catching fish, some people crowd you elbow to elbow. The only thing that counters that rudeness is tactfully yet firmly standing your ground."
Pat and Judy Farrell, Lake Wales, jetty anglers for 45 years: "Some ignorant people leave bait or fish guts where you walk, and too many anglers keep everything they catch. We need signage stating unacceptable behavior as well as size-and-bag limits."
Ron Scott Smith, Sebastian, jetty angler for six years: "Some boaters cruise right up to the jetty and I've seen angry people on the jetty throwing stuff at them. But if boaters see you taking pictures, they usually leave."
Dane Brown, Kissimmee, jetty angler for three years: "People might jump your base location even with your gear there. A roving ranger or even a Park volunteer present would help settle disputes with spot robbers."