South Florida fishing report




Mike Scheele from Juno Pier reported fishing off the pier has been red hot. Big Spanish mackerel, bluefish, small pompano, ladyfish, jacks and kingfish to 33 pounds are being caught almost every day recently. Most of the fish are feeding on the big schools of finger and silver mullet that are migrating along the beach. Captain Bob LeMay reported the fishing along the creeks and shorelines from Little Sable Creek north to Lostman’s River has been red hot. All week long snook, redfish, tarpon, sharks, mackerel and tripletail have been caught in these areas.


Captain Jimbo Thomas from the charter boat Thomas Flyer out of Bayside Marina reported offshore fishing has been fair to good depending on what you are looking for. Over the reefs trolling large Rapala X Raps deep, black grouper to 15 pounds are biting. Spanish mackerel are also being caught on the reef. Further offshore, there are blackfin tunas, bonitos, a few kingfish and a few sailfish. Swordfishing has been good out in 1,200 to 1,800 feet of water. Captain Thomas Zsak of Top Shot Fishing Charters out of Fort Lauderdale reported finding some 10-pound kingfish and large wahoo holding around many of the offshore artificial wrecks outside of 200 feet of water. Trolling sea witches with strips of bonito belly and ballyhoo deep has been the key.


During the three-day IWFA Light Tackle Tournament held in Islamorada, Susan Gros of The Villages in Florida took the first-place angler award with 3,265 points. First-place team awards went to Susan Gros, Hazel Basnight of North Carolina and Joan Kelley of Key West. Captain Dave Denkert of Islamorada took the first place captain award. Captain Bill Hauck on the party boat Sea King out of Marathon reported when the current has been right, his anglers are doing well on flag yellowtail snappers in 60 to 100 feet of water. In depths from 110 to 120 feet, black groupers to 40 pounds are being caught.


Captain Charlie Conners of FishTales Charters out of Port St. Lucie reported sea trout are available in good numbers over the grass flats and sandy holes around Harbor Branch and Midway Road. Look for skipping pompano behind your wake, and when you see them, cast Doc’s Goofy jigs in that area. Redfish will be holding along the mangrove shorelines and under docks. The redfish are eating gold spoons. Black drum, sand perch and sheepshead can be found next to bridge pilings and will eat small pieces of shrimp. Spanish mackerel, bluefish and a few flounder can be targeted with live baits and shiny spoons in and around the ocean inlets. Nighttime snook fishing continues to be good around bridges and under dock lights.


Captain Jim Hobales of Caught Lookin Charters reported having no trouble putting his clients on lots of redfish and snook in and around Shark River and Whitewater Bay. During a recent charter that took place in the backcountry of Flamingo, his clients caught and released close to 100 snook, redfish, snappers, jacks and ladyfish and lost a big tarpon on the jump. Most of the action came off of live baits and Rapala Twitchin Raps.


Captain Butch Rickey of BarHopp’R Kayak Fishing out of Pine Island Sound reported fishing clean water near the Sanibel Causeway he and his clients had steady action from redfish for two hours. Fishing the Punta Rassa Cove out of Port Comfort with gold spoons and in black water created from heavy amounts of freshwater that has made its way into the sound, his clients had action from redfish, sea trout, jacks and ladyfish.


Captain Michael Shellen of Shellen Guide Service out of Buck Head Ridge on Lake Okeechobee reported big bass are eating live wild shiners and lipless crank baits and soft plastics from the Harney Pond and east all the way to Tin House. The Lakes water levels are dropping and most of the action is taking place along the outside grass edges and up in the marsh. Blue gills are eating popping bugs along the hydrilla weed patches. Alan Zaremba and Ted Sander of Cooper City fished together in the C-4 canal and caught 90 largemouth bass, Mayan cichlids and some blue gills using floating Rapala minnows and Flappin Shads.

Capt. Alan Sherman

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