Questions & Comments


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Questions and Comments

Article: Questions & Comments
63 comments on “Questions & Comments
  1. Debbie says:

    Thanks for all the wonderful information. I’m planning on staying a night or two on shell key. I don’t have a kayak or boat though. I’ve looked through tons of the information and Q & A, but couldn’t be certain if there are any ferry’s or charter boats that drop off and pick up to the south public camping area. Would I need to rent a kayak and transport my tent, small cooler, etc in that, or can I hop on a boat that goes over at certain times a day?

  2. Veki says:

    Is spearfishing allowed near the island?

    • Jack Coletti says:

      Hi Veki,

      Yes, spearfishing is allowed within the preserve waters. You might not have a lot of visibility to work with, but there are no rules to stop you from trying.

      Hope this helps!

  3. Derek says:

    A buddy and I are coming from Indiana in a couple of weeks. One question: 1) Do we need to get our Kayaks registered to be able to use them around Shell Key?

    • Jack Coletti says:

      Hi Derek,

      You do not need to register a kayak in Florida – and (as long as you are not camping) there is no permit needed for you to explore the Shell Key Preserve. If you are camping, you just need to get a free online permit.

      Hope this helps. Have fun!

      • Derek says:

        Awesome, thanks! Yes, we already got our camping permit and are ready to go. One last question. Are there any companies that will rent you a kayak by the week?

  4. Alex Sanchez says:

    I fish shell key all of the time. I don’t own a boat, so without the land-bridge the key would be inaccessible to me. I fail to see the problem with foot traffic. I am a responsible angler, I only keep whats in slot and in season. I never leave trash and pickup all I walk by. Is there some sort of kick back that the ferry service pay to the preservation council? Whats the point in having this beautiful fishery if only accessible by a select few? Shell Key gets lost in the white noise of Fort Desoto, and I would prefer that dredging doesn’t happen. The reason the land bridge exist is mother natures response to all the other shady dealings in the name of tourist dollars, so if you “fix” your problem with foot traffic, what other problem are you going to open up. If you let her be she will fix herself, mother nature has proved this time and time again.

  5. Kim says:

    Hello! Wondering if Shell Key is only accessible by boat?

    • Jack Coletti says:

      Hi Kim,

      Technically, the “island” is only allowed to be accessed by boat. Since the closure of the north pass, the island has connected to the mainland – so it is possible to access the north end directly from Tierra Verde – but you would need to break the rules by walking around the fence. Also, there is no public parking in that area, so you risk being towed if you leave your car there.

  6. Chrissy says:


    I would love an update to the Jedi Sign Trick. Did you implement new signage? What does it look like? Is it more effective? What resources did you use when designing?

    Thank you!

    • Jack Coletti says:

      The county commission praised the idea of better signage on the island – but unfortunately they never came up with the funds to make it happen. At this time, the signs are still the same ‘ol hideous designs.

  7. MD Boyle says:

    I was wondering if you are able to hold a wedding on the island there. Do you need a beach permit?? Any help would be appreciated.

    • Jack Coletti says:

      Hi Marla,

      Yes, many people have had weddings on Shell Key. If you are staying overnight with over 50 people, you would need a special permit from the county. Otherwise, no permit would be required for a day event. As long as you stay within either the north or south public use areas, weddings are definitely permitted. As always, you should “leave no trace” and pack out everything that you pack in.


  8. Troy Schuerman says:

    I am curious if it is possible/ allowed to camp on the south side of bunces pass. “The sandbar” closest to the gulf

    • Jack Coletti says:

      I’m fairly certain that it’s not permitted to camp on that sandbar. That area is part of Ft. Desoto park – and there is no wilderness camping anywhere in the park – only civilized camping at the campgrounds.

  9. LuLu says:

    Hi Jack,

    I know for Month of November the winds average out at 15mph with gusts up to approx 20mph. How bad are the winds on the Island?? Should I be concerned camping/Canoeing for a few days. Any tips would be great!!

    Thank You

    • Jack Coletti says:

      Wind speed and vary greatly this time of year. I was out last weekend, and it was calm and beautiful. My advice is to check the prevailing wind direction and locate your camp accordingly. In my experience, the winds usually come from the NW to NE this time of year. A common pattern at this time of year is to see winds coming from the W/NW at sunset – and swinging around to the NE through the night.

  10. edgar says:

    hey im planing on camping there nov25 but i wnat to known if i need a special permit to park at the boat ramp or are there paying stations for over night parking thanks

  11. Walter says:

    How are the mosquitos on Shell Key Island during late Sept/early Oct. I am planning a group kayak and camp trip. Thanks for any good info.


    • Jack Coletti says:

      Hi Walter,

      I have almost never been bothered by mosquitoes on the island – most likely thanks to the lack of any standing fresh water in the area. On the other hand you may still encounter some no-see-ums (biting midges) on the island. They are usually more prevalent in late summer (july/august), but it is still warm enough that you may encounter some. A bug repellent with Deet should keep the no-see-ums at bay. Hope this helps!

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