Over the years I have had many people come to our area with concerns about the canal systems. Worries go from concerns about alligators to water depths to stagnant water. Below I will share with you the straight scoop on Punta Gorda canals.
Punta Gorda Canals, in the City of Punta Gorda
Stagnant water: The canal systems in the city of Punta Gorda have excellent water flow with generally 4 tides a day. The tidal height is normally around 2 feet from high to low. It can go over 3 feet tide swing with certain wind directions and moon phase. As such there is No Smell and No Stagnant water anywhere in the canal systems.
End of Canal Concerns: Many people come here with fears that if they buy a house at the dead end of a canal that it will become a scum patch of floating weeds, debri, etc that stinks and causes problems. First, the dead end of the canal lot has an excellent view shooting right down the canal. But to the point, I have sold many end of canal homes and my customers love the views and never have a problem. Does an occasional coconut float to the end, yes. Do I have to worry about smell and decomposing seaweed, dead fish- No! I can tell you if you consider the Florida Keys for a canal home they do have serious problems at the end of their canals.
Alligators in the Canals: No, you can take this off your list of worries. Alligators live in freshwater and the canals are salt water. I would be remis to say I have never seen an alligator in the canals but only a couple of times over 18 years. This was in the summer months with lots of rain and the alligator apparently got confused coming down the Peace River and into the canal. The alligators have no place to rest in the canals and cannot get onto the properties. Nothing to have any worries about.
Boat ride times are too long in Punta Gorda canals: The typical boat ride time to open water to put up sail or put down the throttle is 10-25 minutes. There is a section in Punta Gorda Isles known as the “Bird Section” that “had” some homes with an hour ride out. A new exit route has been built and will open in April 2020. These homes will now have about a 30 minute ride out. So with that said, pretty much any location will have less than that boat ride out. Burnt Store Isles does have locations that exceed the 30 minutes and we can talk about this specifically. Don’t rule out Burnt Store Isles on hearsay! There is a lot inaccurate information about this neighborhood out there.
Water depth concerns in the canals: You have no worries about water depths in the canal systems. They generally average 8 to 15 feet with plenty of canals with deeper water.
Water depth concerns at my dock: Most homes have plenty of water off their docks from 6 to 8 feet and more on low tide. It is extremely rare to see a vessel listing on its keel because of low water. On occasion it is less however. If you have a deep draft sailboat, trawler, sportfish or yacht you may need a private dredge. Easy to do and low cost, normally under $3,000. The marine contractor dredges for you and takes the spoils and deposits in extra deep spots in the canal systems. No biggie.
Water depth concerns in the exit passage ways: The City of Punta Gorda maintains the Ponce de Leon Inlet to 6 feet mean low water and periodically addresses trouble areas when they develop. The Army Corp of Engineers maintains Alligator Creek (exit for Burnt Store Isles) to 6 feet mean low water and they too occasionally do maintenance dredges.
Fish and wildlife in the canals: I will end this topic with something you might not have expected. The canals are full of fish, crabs and other sea life! Some of the best eating fish can be caught from your dock including redfish, snapper, flounder, sheepshead, snook, speckled trout and mackeral. The canal systems also have blue claw crabs, easy to catch and delicious! You can expect to see manatees and dolphins swim past your dock as well. Schools of huge black drum over 50 pounds live in the canals as does tarpon and jack crevalle. Add to that a variety of shore birds, you will always have something interesting going on at waters edge.