Captain Scott Collins of Getting Lucky Sportfishing Charters out of Jupiter reported trolling rigged baits offshore of Jupiter he has been finding some quality dolphins. Kingfish have been active on the ledge, and on the bottom plenty of vermilion snappers and big porgies are hitting cut baits.
Captain Dave Kostyo of Knot Nancy Fishing Charters out of TNT Marina in Keystone reported offshore fishing outside of Miami Beach has been challenging. During recent charters using live baitfish fished from the bottom to the surface, his clients have caught large barracudas, sailfish, a few dolphins, bonitos, kingfish, mutton and vermillion snappers, plus a few nice catch-and-release gag groupers.
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Drew Wickstrom of Florida Sportsman Magazine, Craig Brunstein of Oceanic Gear and former UM and NFL star Warren Sapp fished with captain Jack Carlson of Two Conchs Charters out of Marathon and caught cobia, big mangrove snappers, sharks, Spanish mackerel and jack crevalles. The fish were caught in Florida Bay over structure. Captain Carlson has been fishing the Marathon Hump and catching blackfin tuna and mutton snappers. The fish were caught using Mustad jigs tipped with live and dead baits. Brett Hogan out of the Holiday Inn in Key Largo reported the offshore charter boats and party boats are doing well on kingfish, sailfish, wahoo and blackfin tuna just outside the outer reef line. On the bottom there have been flag yellowtails, mutton snappers and groupers for catch and release. During the 35th Annual Islamorada Bartenders Sailfish Open held at the Lorelei Restaurant and Cabana Bar in Islamorada, 52 anglers braved windy, wet and rough seas to compete for the top awards. At the end of the one-day tournament, Dillon’s Pub and Grill anglers Justin Matson, Skylar McGarry and Ramanda Bannenberg took top honors with three sailfish releases on time. Fifteen sailfish were released and another five sailfish were lost during the battle. The Dillon’s Pub and Grill anglers fished aboard the Hey Papa with captain Nick Stanczyk.
Captain Michael Savedow of Edgewater River Guide reported cold water has turned the Mosquito Lagoon and the Indian River backcountry crystal clear. On the calmer days the redfish are schooled in the shallow water and big sea trout are on the flats in potholes. When the fronts roll in, the sea trout are feeding along the drop-offs and redfish and sheepshead are feeding in the protected backcountry. Shrimp on a jig has been getting the job done. Sandy Wurm from the Deerfield Beach Pier reported pier fishermen were treated to a rare sighting of a small pod of sailfish that swam by the pier. Unfortunately, none were hooked. Pier fishermen are catching permits at night, however.
Captain Jason Sullivan of Rising Tide Charters reported cold fronts are rolling into the Flamingo area almost twice weekly. Most of the fishing has been in the backcountry in the rivers, creeks and in Oyster and Whitewater Bays. Snook are holding along mangrove shoreline points and lots of sea trout are feeding over the bars, points and open waters. Redfish can be sight fished as they travel the shallow edges of the mangroves. Rapala plugs, bucktails tipped with a Gulp bait and Clouser minnows are getting the strikes.
Captain Gary Mounce of Fishin Finatic Charters out of Everglades City reported he has been doing well on redfish in the Lostmans River area. A live shrimp under a cork or jigs tipped with shrimp are getting the redfish strikes. The best action has been on a mid to high incoming tide. Sea trout are feeding around Pavilion Key. Shrimp under a popping cork is all you need to catch plenty of sea trout. Sheepshead and mangrove snappers are plentiful in the area and will eagerly eat a piece of shrimp on a small hook with a small weight. The sheepshead and snappers are feeding next to the oyster bars, in the creeks and next to most of the downed trees.
Mark Escobar out of BJ’s Bait and Tackle in Plantation reported water levels are so high in the Everglades Conservation areas that largemouth bass have pushed so far up on the flats that they are almost untouchable. There have been a few fish caught in the Holey Land and out west on the Alligator Alley. Floating Rapala’s and plastic worms have been getting the strikes.
Capt. Alan Sherman