Snook season has reopened on Florida’s Atlantic coast, bringing the nighttime bridge and jetty scene back to life. To put one of those slot fish in the box, or shoot for bragging rights an oversize release fish, check out the cover story, “Flight of the Night Hawks,” about redtail hawk and flare jigs. FS Editor Jeff Weakley interviews east coast pros and digs up the history on these highly effective deepwater snook lures. Lots of other great spring fishing covered in the March issue, including pompano, Spanish mackerel, and cobia. Plus we’ve got a Florida turkey hunting pro with a great instructional on preparing for those wary gobblers.
Where are those pompano coming from, and where are they going? Managing Editor David Conway explores the migration patterns of the ever-popular pompano, and offers insights on catching them at beaches, on grassflats and from land-based piers and shorelines. Mexico Beach, in the Florida Panhandle, is a hidden gem for inshore and offshore anglers. Find out what you need to plan a trip to this fantastic coastal town. There are reds and trout on the flats, snapper on the nearshore reefs, and all sorts of surprises cruising the beaches.
How to close the deal with a persnickity bull dolphin? Florida Keys captain Joe Suroviec tells how, in the Offshore Seminar. Better have extra rods on board, and be ready to deploy a jig, live bait or strip at moment’s notice. And what about a no-nonsense trolling pattern for locating those spring Spanish mackerel that are pushing north along the Florida Peninsula? Southwest Field Editor Ralph Allen, a fishing captain by trade, offers his plan for putting great-eating macks in the boat without putting tangles in your line. And for the bluewater trollers, our Tropical Roundup focuses on the amazing wahoo fishing taking place in the Turks & Caicos islands.
Cypress trees practically define many Florida waterways—the tall, shapely trees provide all sorts of cover along lake and river shores. Bass see a lot more than we do, including the networks of subsurface roots, and downed timber, that stretch away from the main cypress trunks. Freshwater authority Chris Christian outlines a proven strategy for reading cypress waters and locating bass. So you prefer fishing open water, do you? Well then be sure to get Frank Sargeant’s unique take on the Alabama Rig, in the Freshwater Seminar. And last but not least, the March issue finishes with one of the most amazing days of bass fishing any of us can recall. Don’t miss the always-popular “An Outdoor Happening.”
Florida’s winter shrimp runs have given many of us a supply of wild-caught shrimp, whether by castnet or dipnet. Sportsman’s Kitchen columnist Tommy Thompson tells how to whip up a Scampi recipe that can’t be beat. In On the Conservation Front, Treasure Coast reporter Ed Killer shines light on the confusing regulations governing black seabass on the Atlantic Coast. These seemingly abundant, easy-to-catch bottom fish are now subject to radical swings in season dates and bag limits. Find out what’s going on, from your trusted authority.
Plan a tuna trip to the Florida Keys. Catch seatrout in Biscayne Bay. Early tarpon in Naples. Kayak fishing in Ding Darling refuge. Cobia in the Panhandle. Turkey hunting on WMAs. Local expertise is our forte, illustrated, as always by excellent photographs submitted by Florida Sportsman members around the state. Check out the Action Spotter to see who made the pages, and find out where you’ll make your next great catch!