Here, Fishy Fishy Fishy…

Feeding

The Feeding Pool. The bottom is open to the sea. The gates are intended to keep the pesky pelicans out of the feeding area. They bite!

When you’re on an island, it can be hard to avoid tourist traps. Often, the whole place is a tourist trap! But some attractions are worth embracing, no matter how cheesy. Robbie’s of Islamorada, a third of the way down the Keys, is such a place. Robbie’s boasts a restaurant, a marina, boat rentals, fishing trips, and dozens of kiosks selling sunglasses and souvenirs, but none of those are why I stopped at Robbie’s. I stopped to feed the fish.

Everyday, anywhere between 50 and 100 tarpon gather at Robbie’s. Atlantic tarpon are one of the great game fish: up to 8 feet long and over 300 pounds, they put up quite a fight on the line and taste great, if you can land one. I’ve never been deep sea fishing, maybe someday, but at Robbie’s I got to dangle a bait fish off the dock and watch a tarpon leap from the clear blue water and take the bait from my bare hand. I shrieked with delight everytime. An experience totally worth braving the tourist trap!

Drew drops the bait

Drew drops the bait

Bait Bucket, yuck

$1 Bait Bucket, yuck

Here fishy fishy...

Here fishy fishy…

Tarpon Takes the Bait!

Tarpon Takes the Bait!

Tarpon Takes the Bait II

Tarpon Takes the Bait II

Tarpon Takes the Bait III

Tarpon Takes the Bait III

Tarpon Feeding at Robbie's

Tarpon Feeding at Robbie’s

Pelican & Tarpon

Pelican & Tarpon

Boat docked at Robbie's

Boat docked at Robbie’s

Feed the Tarpon at Robbies!

Feed the Tarpon at Robbies!

Keep following me South: Key West or Bust!

About theblondecoyote

Mary Caperton Morton is a freelance science and travel writer with degrees in biology and geology and a master’s in science writing. A regular contributor to EARTH magazine, where her favorite beat is the Travels in Geology column, she has also written for the anthologies Best Women's Travel Writing 2010 and Best Travel Writing 2011. Mary is currently based in Big Sky, Montana. When she’s not at the computer she can usually be found outside -- hiking, skiing, climbing mountains and taking photographs. Visit her website at www.marycapertonmorton.com.
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5 Responses to Here, Fishy Fishy Fishy…

  1. forkinriver says:

    I wonder if the hand feeding makes them more or less aggressive when attacking bait in open sea. (i.e. what do the fisherman think of this hand feeding business?) 😉

  2. I love anything “marina or ocean” even if it is a tourist trap! Clearwater Marina is fun, south of Tampa if you get a chance to go there.

  3. Ohhhhh myyyyy goooood. That green-blue water is calling my name!!!!!

  4. What a fun place to visit ! I’d probably scream if that tarpon came after my little hand.

  5. AWESOME! Love this post I get sucked into doing these things to when out on the road 🙂

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