Uniquely Pine Island, the Fish Shacks of Pine Island Sound are relics of bygone days when commercial fishing was a way of life. These stilt houses located between Pineland and Captiva Pass were home to fishermen and their families. They would fish for mullet or pompano by night and repair their nets and rest during the day. Their catch would be sold to fish companies that would call on each shack by boat. The children would be collected each day by the “school boat” and be taken to Pine Island where they would catch their school bus for the long ride to the mainland and school.
A favorite photo subject of mine, the shacks are accessible only by water. For me it is an hour boat ride, but well worth the effort. Six shacks are all that remain of a once vibrant commercial fishing industry in Pine Island Sound and Charlotte Harbor. Most are rather ordinary looking but one stands out. The Red Shack is by far the most interesting photographically. Painted a bright red, it would seem to be the oldest one with its painted metal roof, separate outhouse, and water reservoir. Built on an oyster bar it has a very long pier stretch out to deeper water and a favorite resting place for the many pelicans, cormorants, gulls, and skimmers in the area. The photos were taken with a wild angle lens, hence the distortion and skewing.
Zoom out on the satellite image of the Red Shack to see where in the world.
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