Captain Pete Rapps of Captain Rapps’ Charters and Guides out of Chokoloskee reported snook are feeding on a good moving outgoing tide around the outside barrier islands. Live baits such as the pilchards, pinfish and threadfin herring and the DOA Terrorize soft plastics have been producing some of the best snook bites. Sea trout are feeding over grass in 3-5 feet of water. The redfish have been feeding along the oyster bars on the incoming tides. Popping corks with shrimp or pilchards have been getting a lot of the redfish strikes. Big tarpon are still around, holding in the open outside bays and flats, and have been feeding best during early mornings. Live baits such as small ladyfish, large threadfin herring, pinfish and mullet have been getting the most tarpon strikes.
Captain Mo Estevez of New Dawn Charters out of Miami reported that the bonefishing along the Oceanside flats south of Key Biscayne has been excellent. Schools of bonefish and permits have been flooding the flats on both tides as long as they are moving. The bonefish are chewing on live shrimp, and the permits have been favoring a silver-dollar blue crab. Tarpon have been active along Key Biscayne just before sunrise. Captain Dean Panos of DoubleD charters out of Keystone Marina reported he has been fishing outside the outer reef and averaging at least one sailfish on almost every trip. Besides the sailfish, his clients have had action from wahoo, kingfish and bonito. Captain Gil Gutierrez of Lucky Fishing Charters out of TNT Marine Center reported that he has to run 15 to 20 miles offshore to find the schools of large schoolie dolphins that have been feeding along broken weedlines.
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Captain Chris Johnson of SeasSquared Charters out of Marathon reported that fishing for mangrove snappers in his area has been excellent. Anchoring and chumming over hard bottom is producing limit catches of quality size mangrove snappers. There have been some real nice mutton snappers and gag groupers in the deeper offshore waters, and inshore shark fishing continues to excellent. IslamoradaSportFishing.com reported only a few people are heading offshore in their area. The few that have gone 12 to 20 miles offshore are finding scattered weeds and scattered dolphins.
Henry Caimotto from the Snook Nook Bait and Tackle in Jensen Beach reported there are plenty of finger mullet in the St. Lucie River but no real baitfish run as of yet. Offshore anglers have to fish hard for the few dolphins that are around, and closer to the reef, kingfishing is slow but the wahoo bite has been good. Deep trolled baits is what’s getting the wahoo bites. Along the beaches, there is a good early morning tarpon and snook bite.
Captain Bob LeMay reported finding large schools of baitfish along the outside shorelines from Shark River north to Lostman’s River. LeMay’s clients have been catching large redfish, snook, sea trout and tarpon in the areas that the baitfishes have been holding. The snook, redfish, sea trout and tarpon have responded to live bait chumming. Once the fish start eating the free chum, his clients have either pitched live baits to the hungry fish or thrown an assortment of artificial lures.
Captain Jon Fetter of Catching the Cure Backcountry Fishing Charters of Fort Myers reported that his best redfish action has been during early mornings around mangrove shorelines and oyster bars. Jigs tipped with shrimp and pinfish under a float have been getting most of the redfish strikes. During the heat of the day, the redfish are eating cut baits fished tight along mangrove shorelines. Sea trout are biting jigs tipped with shrimp bounced over the bottom in the passes. Snook have been holding under floating docks and up under the mangroves but can be tempted into taking a well-placed live free lined threadfin herring.
Mark Escobar from BJ’s Bait and Tackle in Plantation reported that water levels in the Glades remain high, but there are still fish to be caught. At Sawgrass Recreation Park, largemouth bass are holding under cover in the holes up on the flats. Largemouth bass also can be found around the flood gates when they first open. Live shiners are working around the flood gates, and soft-plastic rigged Weedless are getting strikes from the bass on the flats. Early mornings have been the best.
Capt. Alan Sherman