Key Largo to Key West
Includes Islamorada and Marathon
Hello everybody! Great summertime fishing going on in the Florida Keys backcountry. Great redfishing reports this week in the Everglades National Park. Anglers that put their time on the hunt reported nice schools of fish in the flats around the park. Fish soft plastics rigged wheedles in the shallow areas and bait, such as pinfish or pilchards in the deeper spots. Chunking dead ladyfish or pinfish under your favorite bush has been working great when conditions are not good for sight fishing.
Don’t be surprise if you run in to some tarpon while looking for the snook and reds. snook, redfish, trout, tarpon and big sharks are all available in the Flamingo area with many rod benders as well. Fish the flats in Snake Bight and adjacent islands for redfish and snook. Gold spoons and weedless jerk baits are working great in the shallow areas. Live pinfish, pilchards and Berkley Gulps! are all catching fish while working the runoffs. Big sharks and tarpon will be in the deeper channels, a dead mullet or ladyfish on the bottom is a great way to target them. Trout and rod benders in the middle grounds area will keep you busy with fast paced action.
Head out to the Cape Sable area with a live well full of pinfish or pilchards for a great snook bite. Fish the shoreline from the beach to middle cape while casting the pinfish around the debris. Watch out for the sharks while releasing the fish, don’t want to lose a hand doing it. Sharks and even some gators will be doing their best to steal your catch. Step up your tackle and get the fish to the boat as fast as possible. Make sure you have lots of good bug repellent since it can be unbearable without it in most of the Park.
If conditions permit, the Gulf wrecks is a good place to be this time of the year. From permit to cobia and many more you never know what you can encounter while fishing the wrecks. Bring different baits like crabs and pinfish and have different rods rigged and ready to go for what opportunity presents.
Decent bite of big trout still going on around the park boundaries from Sandy Key all the way to Sprigger bank with snappers and rod benders, as well. Bouncing white pompano jigs or DOA plastics on the bottom while you drift has been proven deadly for the trout and snappers and pretty much everything that swims out there. Constant action will keep everybody on the boat busy catching fish. Chumming and casting baby pinfish or pilchards behind the boat has been really good as well.
Tarpon fishing continues to be productive if you put your time to it. Most boats fishing in daylight hours are getting the most action while fishing pilchards around local channels. Crabs on the outgoing tide in the dark continues to be the best combination for multiple hookups.
Bonefishing has been great for the anglers working the tides both oceanside and bayside. Look for the fish to be tailing and mudding early mornings and late afternoon around ocean and bayside flats. Same goes for the permit, look for them to be patrolling the deeper edges of both ocean and bayside flats and banks. Don’t miss out on the great summer fishery the Florida Keys backcountry has to offer. Get on the water and keep on fishing.
Hello everyone, and welcome back to this week’s report! If mahi are what you are looking for than look no further! Lots of mahi around right now, and some big ones to boot! The birds are on them, and there’s plenty of weed, so finding them is no issue. Is it the tunas you are after? No problem there either, as the blackfin tuna fishing is great. There’s not a lot of really big ones around, but some really nice footballs are being caught on feathers and vertical jigs. The reef and wrecks are still pretty good too with the tellowtails biting pretty well, and muttons starting to bite better every day. Groupers have been pretty good, but I wouldn’t say red hot. The sword grounds were on the quiet side this week, but there were a few caught. The deep dropping remains good, so plenty to catch in the deep. Plenty of fish around to please everyone, and the weather remains really nice! That’s all for this week, see you next week with a new report!
Welcome back to the Lower Keys Fishing Forecast, summer fishing continues to be excellent and weather has been great. It looks another nice weather weekend around Key West, with light winds and partly cloudy skies. Mahi fishing remains strong offshore, this week we saw fish in as shallow as 350 feet and out way past the wall. For the most part, we found nice size schools of mahi underneath little black birds, but we also found a few fish under frigate birds and floating debris. We also ran into schools of skipjack tunas out around Woods Wall, they were under birds as well. There were still a few billfish sightings this week so if you’re out there trolling, make sure your ready for a shot at a billfish.
The backcountry fishing remains excellent too, this a great time of year to fish the flats, due to the great sunlight and light winds. There are still plenty of big tarpon around Key West, we hooked a few fish early in the morning as there were plenty of slow rolling fish in some of the channels and basins. The permit are back on the flats if you want to try targeting some of the most finicky game fish in the shallows. Use a live crab on a small J hook, that is a great setup to start targeting these fish. Please be careful boating around the backcountry this weekend, were getting close to mini lobster season, so there will be plenty of traffic on the water and safety needs to be the number one priority.
Capt. Jamie Connell