Outdoors

This week’s best bet: Islamorada offshore fleet finding blackfin tuna

Captain Dean Panos, right, is shown in a file photo. Panos, of Double D Charters out of Keystone Marina, reported during a few of his offshore Miami charters his clients have landed two types of billfish in one day.
Captain Dean Panos, right, is shown in a file photo. Panos, of Double D Charters out of Keystone Marina, reported during a few of his offshore Miami charters his clients have landed two types of billfish in one day. Miami Herald File

BEST BET

IslamoradaSportFishing.com reported the Islamorada offshore fleet has been catching good numbers of blackfin tuna over the Humps. Outside the outer reef sailfish are being caught and a good number of kingfish and wahoo have come over the rail. The kings, sailfish and wahoo have been eating slow trolled speedos. In Florida Bay and along the Park boundary markers Spanish mackerel are hot one day and hard to find the next. Sea trout are making a strong showing now that spring has arrived.

MIAMI-DADE/BROWARD

Captain Mo Estevez of New Dawn Charters reported tarpon and bonefish fishing has been tough around Government Cut and South Bay but there is a great sea trout bite taking place in North and South Bay. Captain Dean Panos of Double D Charters out of Keystone Marina reported during a few of his offshore Miami charters his clients have landed two types of billfish in one day. Swordfish were caught out in 2000 feet of water and sailfish were caught in 200 feet of water. Captain Paul Roydhouse of FishingHeadquarters.com out of Fort Lauderdale reported his nighttime party boat reef fishing has been excellent. During recent trips his clients have had limit catches of yellowtail, mutton, mangrove and lane snappers using cut bait fished on the bottom. Locals Dr. David Bohorquez and his 12 year old daughter Amanda fished on the Get Em in the Oleta River and North Bay with live pilchards for bait. David caught and released a snook and jack crevalle but his daughter Amanda landed a legal mangrove snapper and a 17 inch sea trout and with the assistance of captain Alan Sherman caught and released her first snook a 27 inch fish and a six pound jack crevalle.

KEYS

Captain Lenny Leonard of Bonefishing Key West reported with water temperatures climbing up to 80 degrees he is seeing big numbers of bonefish up on the shallow flats. Mixed in with the bonefish schools have been quite a few tarpon and permits. Captain Bill Hauck from the party boat Sea King in Marathon said he will be starting weekend night trips this week. Hauck expects the big flag yellowtails, mangrove snapper and big mutton snappers plus some decent groupers to waiting for his nighttime clients.

TREASURE COAST

Captain Tom Van Horn of Mosquito Coast Charters reported water levels have dropped in the Mosquito Lagoon and cleared up as well making sight fishing tailing big black drum and redfish much easier. There has been some 50 plus pound black drum eating crabs along the bridges in the Lagoon. Captain Charlie Conner of FishTales Charters reported the best fishing has been around Fort Pierce where sheepshead, mangrove snappers, croakers and sea trout are biting over the grass flats and in the channels. These fish have been eating live shrimp.

FLORIDA BAY

Captain Taylor Powell of Fly Fish South Florida Charters reported a possible red tide forming in-between Flamingo and Chokoloskee this past week. On the Flamingo side redfish and snook have been available along the shallow flats on the last of the incoming and the first of the incoming tides. Lots of tripletail has been hiding under mats of grass and under crab trap buoys. Captain Jim Hobales of Caught Lookin Charters reported finding hungry sea trout and tarpon in the backcountry of Flamingo. These fish were eating live finger mullet and soft plastics.

SOUTHWEST COAST

Captain Gary Mounce of Fishin Finatic Charters out of Everglades City reported big spawning sea trout are returning to his area and should stick around through late May. The sea trout can be found over the grass flats, along oyster bars and at the creek mouths. These trout will eat live finger mullet, whitebait, shrimp and DOA flukes. Look for snook to holding along the creek mouth points and next to down trees along the outside shorelines.

FRESHWATER

Captain Alan Zaremba of World Wide Sportfishing Inc. reported his fly fishing clients are doing well on large peacock bass and snook in the urban canals. Mark Escobar out of BJ’s Bait and Tackle in Plantation reported as water levels slowly drop in the freshwater canals of the Everglades the fishing in these canals has been getting better every day. Largemouth bass to eight pounds are being caught on live shiners, soft plastics and hard plastic baits. Good areas to try have been the canals along Alligator Alley, the Holy Land and Loxahatchee.

Capt. Alan Sherman

shermana@bellsouth.net

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