Florida Sportsman Blog

Boca Raton Dolphin, Kings and Bonito

 
Recent offshore fishing reports from the Southeast region.


Boca Raton Dolphin, Kings and Bonito

Florida Sportsman member: landshark

Boca Raton Dolphin

We deiced to make the run north. We found a crazy edge in 300-350ft of water, with a smoking north current. It went from being 2-4 to 4-6 real quick out there. The mahi were stacked up on that edge.

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Tournament Fishing Palm Beach Mahi

Florida Sportsman member: Mmac211

Palm Beach Mahi

John, Norm, and I braved it out of Palm Beach Inlet on Johns 27′ Sea Cat. We dragged baits the whole time and got these two brothers in 240′ off Juno within five minutes of each other.

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Bottom Fishing Palm Beach

Florida Sportsman member: tunawahoo

Bottom Fishing Palm Beach

I had Sid Bergeron and friends out today for some bottom fishing. While Sid was busy filling the bucket with tasty porgies and triggers, he also hooked up with a bunch of exotics.

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Lake Worth Inlet Backup Plan

Florida Sportsman member: Kaimana

Lake Worth Inlet

The first drop produced a very nice mutton on a gog, followed by a vermillion on a bonito chunk. A little while later, we broke off a sail. While we were resetting after the sail, a school of lit up dolphin showed up.

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Slow Day Off Palm Beach

Florida Sportsman member: MakoLogic

Palm Beach

Late in the day, the last raft of weed before we pull the plug, I toss a gog at the weed and see green. Slinger inhales the gog. I’ve never seen such a small dolphin eat a whole gog before.

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Offshore Stuart Wahoo and More

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Offshore Stuart Wahoo

Finally we see color and my jaw drops. It is a 73″ 74 pound wahoo hooked on just 40 pound mono and a 5/0 circle!

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Palm Beach Tuna and More

Florida Sportsman member: tunawahoo

Palm Beach Tuna

Highlight of the trip was a blackfin on a flat lined sardine. Lots of blue runners, bonito, triggers and other assorted bottom dwellers.

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Boynton Grouper and Jacks

Florida Sportsman member: landshark

Boyton Grouper

Next drop was one to remember! The fish fought just like an AJ, and we thought it was an AJ the entire time, till we went to leader and saw it was a nice 20-25lb black grouper!

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Palm Beach Shark in the Surf

Florida Sportsman member: sandwashslugger

Palm Beach Shark

After an hour of not one bite, I reeled in my line to check my bait. Right before I went to cast I saw a good size blacktip shark literally right at my feet. I pitched the bait, he turned on it and I turned on the gopro.

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Palm Beach Inlet Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: ControlledChaos

Palm Beach Inlet

We ended the morning with two sails, six mahi up to 26lbs, two kingfish, a big bull shark, a red grouper, an AJ, and short muttons. Round 2 was a completely different story.

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Palm Beach Bottom Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: tunawahoo

Palm Beach Bottom Fishing

Great bottom fishing today with vermillion snappers, porgies, triggers and all kinds of reef fish making for fast action with light tackle.

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Palm Beach Inlet Wahoo and King

Florida Sportsman member: Tori’S Toy

Palm Beach Inlet Wahoo

After getting the baits reset, I see a school of bait fish jumping out of the water just north of us. We slow troll that way and stop where we think the action was. Ricky once again goes for the bottom fish. About 15 minutes later, a reel goes screaming out.

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Fort Pierce Inlet Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: SonarSup

Fort Pierce Inlet Dolphin

Inside 200′ seas were very calm 0-2′. Outside 200′ there were some very big rollies 4-8′. Around two, in 150′, the line on the down planner went off. The phin wasn’t very big, but still better than getting skunked for a long day. The bite was on a blue and white Iland Sea Star.

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Palm Beach Inlet Muttons, Kings and African Pompano

Florida Sportsman member: ControlledChaos

Palm Beach Inlet Mutton

We had a charter cancel last minute this morning. Scotty and I already had the boat ready, so we decided to go out anyway. We didn’t get many hits, but what we did was all quality. Two kings, 42 and 46 lb, a 13lb African pompano, a bunch of short muttons and one mutton just under seven pounds.

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Lake Worth Inlet Wide Variety

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Lake Worth Inlet

We started fishing some live bait, while prospecting the bottom. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! Holy smokes Mickey got a huge smoker, then another, and a few snakes too. Not having a king permit, we just kept two, and released several, feeling good about being “conservation minded”. Of the two we kept, the biggest smoker was about 40lbs.

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Lake Worth Inlet Success

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Lake Worth Inlet

Mickey loves light tackle, so when a nice king slammed his torium 16 with 15lb test, he was delighted! He rallies a limit of kings in 15 minutes and then I see movement on my stealth bomber. I have the entire Buccaneer Sailfish fleet all around me! Helium and kites fill the sky, but no one is catching. Meanwhile, Mickey is tight and his sailfish is dancing all around their spreads!

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Mahi, Macks and More

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

mahi

We were on the bump about 30 minutes and the long gets drilled! Nice king in the box. Long story short we had two per person in short order. We even released two or three that were well above legal limit, for good karma. It paid off.

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Fort Pierce Inlet Wahoo and Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: SonarSup

Fort Pierce Inlet Wahoo

Around 200′ we noticed a decent amount of scattered weeds. We got bit on mid-distance centerline from the boat with a pink and white islander on pre-rigged ballyhoo with wire. We saw a flash of blue, but no acrobatics. We cleared the other lines, and got the fish to the back of the boat and saw the zebra. As soon as he saw the boat, he took a smoking run. We barely got him back up and in the boat.

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Saint Lucie Inlet Wahoo and Sails

Florida Sportsman member: Skimfla

Saint Lucie Inlet Wahoo

Started trolling around 8am headed NE. Hit a rip in about 120′ and hooked on to two hoo’s in the middle of all the sport fishers kite fishing for sails. Went bottom fishing and had a couple of bites on the bottom, when suddenly we were bombarded by a group of three-four sails. Hooked up on two.

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Trolling and Bottom Fishing St. Lucie Inlet

Florida Sportsman member: tunahound

Bottom Fishing St. Lucie Inlet

Eric’s reels starts screaming, and he’s into the fight. Eric starts to gain some line and suddenly we see color. Now everything gets serious and we’re grabbing the gaffs and clearing lines. Eric gets the fish up next to the boat and Gary and I hit it with two gaff shots and get it into the fish box. The Cobia went 38lbs and was about 48 inches.

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Jupiter Wahoo, Sailfish and Tuna

Florida Sportsman member: GSS

jupiter wahoo

We decided to go with the kite on day two. Turned out to be a good call since it led to a wahoo and sail. Both caught in 150ft. The Wahoo ate the closest kite bait and put on a great show. Huge shoutout to Mike with Angler Management for urging us to use a wire leader. That wahoo would have gotten a free lunch had we not gotten the tip.

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Lake Worth Mahi Surprise

Florida Sportsman member: Kaimana

Lake Worth Mahi

I started heading west and found some weed lining up in about 95′. Followed that north and got my first hit towards the north end of Singer Island. I looked at the depth finder and saw 90′ and no jumps, so was kind of thinking Bonito territory, but once I got him close I saw Christmas tree green. What a sight for sore eyes.

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Trolling Lake Worth Inlet

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Trolling Lake Worth Inlet

We ran south and it was blowing about 15 out of south/southeast with clean water. Good north current too. We caught a dolphin, then had a big king get sharked. Then we caught a sail, got clean release and reset. The best fishing for us was 120-135′

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St. Lucie County Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: torresson

St. Lucie County

We started off breakers and within five minutes we had a 33 lb bull and 24 lb cow in the boat! While I was resetting the bow kite, the stern had a double kingfish. The bite was on for the three hours we fished. Had two sails, three kings and seven mahi.

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Jupiter Cobia Catch

Florida Sportsman member: Team gt

jupiter cobia catch

We got out today to do some snapper fishing and end up getting some nice cobia. Stuck one with the gaff and wasn’t prepared for the reaction, so if anybody finds a gaff floatin off Jupiter, you’ll know why.

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Huge Jupiter Swordfish

Team No Competition
Huge Jupiter Swordfish

Check out this sword! Team No Competition caught this 488 pound stud while daytime swordfishing off of Jupiter. Nice fish guys!

 

 

 

 

 

 


Boca Raton Snapper Limit

Florida Sportsman member: HurricaneBK

Boca Raton Snapper

We started off with a few kingfish bites on the vertical jig, finally landing a nice one which was followed shortly by a double on sails on the kite. Some more vertical jigging brought up an amberjack followed shortly by a small red grouper and finally a vermillion snapper. Realizing we were on vermillion’s, we switched over to targeting them and limited out in about an hour.

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Jupiter Sailfish

Florida Sportsman member: MakoLogi

Jupiter Sailfish

After trolling out to 300 or so and back in, set up some live bait lines in about 250 ft. Picked up two very pissed off sails, both in 230-270ish. Had some fun and got lots of jumps. Mine was weird, he headed straight for the bottom and took a long time to come up before he decided to get aerial.

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Making Memories: Father and Son Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: PaulBoat

Father and Son Fishing

Joseph and I crossed over to West End on Friday afternoon. Spent the evening at the marina. Fished Saturday until 1pm. Ended up with seven wahoo in the box.

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Huge Lake Worth Wahoo

Florida Sportsman member: Ryanmc6884

Lake Worth Wahoo

At 4:30, 300ft north of Lake Worth pier we got the hit we been waiting for. The fish did not want to come to the surface and gave us hell boatside, but teamwork paid off and we got him in the cooler! We ended up with five small dolphin, three tuna, and a nice wahoo!

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Trolling Wahoo and Deep Dropping Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: CNTDR

trolling wahoo

After about an hour, we get a huge hit, the pole bends over double and the reels is singing. Not like a beautiful bird, but like a feral poisonous bird that is sick and dying. The guys easily slide a 40 pound class wahoo thru the transom door like clockwork.

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Epic Swordfish and Shark Bite

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

swordfish and shark

First drop? Nice swordfish about 110lbs and 60″. Second drop, we catch his twin, who is about 100lbs. Third drop, 300+/- Big Eye Thresher, which we released. Congrats to Team No Competition, who was right next to us who landed a 488lb beast.

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Shrimp Boat Fishing Slam

Florida Sportsman member: bambam78

The line ran off the reel faster and stronger than any of the other bites. The fight on a fast action rod and a 30 class reel was an absolute blast. Capt. Chaz told me as the fish got closer to the surface, that Yellowfin will do crazy things. Sure enough he was right. We saw color on the fish and shortly after, it made a run for the bow of the boat.

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Palm Beach Offshore Action

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Managemnt

Great action on the last two days. Kites up between 70-120. We landed six out of seven on sails and several mahi, kings and snappers on gigs and small mullet dragged on the bottom. Even snagged a snook at the end of the drift, in 50″ Sailfish action!!

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Boca Raton Variety

Florida Sportsman member: SenseiTony

I spent all weekend trying to get the ship ready to take it out on this small chance of boatable seas. We got out around two pm and within one minute out of Boca, we had a barracuda hit one of my ballyhoo.

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Southeast Offshore: Epic Catch

Florida Sportsman member: dcheek2112

While fishing in the Southeast, Forum member dcheek2112 snags an epic assortment of wahoo, grouper, snapper, tiles and porgies. He caught a limit of grouper: gag, scamp, snowy, kitty and yellowedge. Nice!

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Day Trip Success: Wahoo and Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Jeff ran right over his head as soon as we put lines in! Doc and Jordan tag team on cranking, E$ is on the leader. The fish pops up alongside the boat and my freaking jaw dropped.

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Personal Best Wahoo

Florida Sportsman member: GRSC

I have my brother in town and went out this afternoon to attempt a repeat of yesterday’s magical day. Well, fell short by 30 pounds but 48 is still respectable and his personal best.

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Tournament Fun

Florida Sportsman member: latitudeadjustment

We decided to try a rattle jet for the shotgun and a few ballys and bonita strip. In about 240 feet a few small mahi hit the spread and was really cool to see some jumps with 2 fish on, a bit frantic but landed them both and kept one, nothing major but thankful once again for some mahi action and meat for our table.

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Boca Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: MGD

We had two doubles and caught one of those, also had a triple and got all three. All fish hit ballyhoos with either a sail lure or a small notcho or rattle jet.

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Finding the Phins

Florida Sportsman member: CAPTAIN KABUK

I took the wife out dolphin fishing, found nice line in about 1000 feet of water, and got five nice dolphin from 8 to 13 pounds.

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A Wahoo Surprise

Florida Sportsman member: Mike Butcher

I get Jody baited up with a live Sardine and she flips it out 20 feet from the side of the boat. A Wahoo skyrockets 5 feet out of the water next to the boat and it was game on. I’m waiting any minute for the line to go slack since we are using 40 pound fluorocarbon leader. After 45 minutes the fish is within gaffing range and I get a great head shot.

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Fort Pierce Offshore Bite

Florida Sportsman member:BacDoc

Grunt chunks and sardines have been my bait of choice, live goggle eye caught some nice ones too. I use a long leader, 15 feet of 40 pound fluorocarbon and a circle hook for the snapper. The best bite has been when tide is running the right direction from the south with lite ESE wind. The bite has been the best when tide has us using 4 to 8 ounces to hold bottom.

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Full Moon Snapper Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: FISHHUNTR

Headed to a spot in 25 feet I hadn’t fished since last year; marks on the machine indicate some life so lines in around 1:30am. Depsite not having any chum the fishing was good, baits were getting thumped not long after hitting bottom. I caught a 28 & 26 inch mutton right off the bat and a few legal mangos and some short muttons.

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Working for the Bite

Florida Sportsman member: lunkerman

There were a lot of nice fish (including a 25 pound bull) hanging around the boat for another 3 to 5 minutes but they were the smart ones and wouldn’t eat.

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Day Saver

Florida Sportsman member: Del Mar

We started on the hill, with the current ripping at seven MPH, tuna were deep at 200 plus feet. Trolled the 80 foot line. Nice weed line but no bites. Bottom fished by black condo when a cobia came up to boat. The fish ate a bucktail jig and 25 minutes later we landed a 30 pound cobia.

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Money in the Bank

Florida Sportsman member: Ryanmc6884

Started trolling off of Boynton heading North. Got a king early on to get the team fired up and in gear. Next up was the grown man as buddy buddy calls the wahoo. Started screaming on the planer. After lines all cleared she popped up on the surface to make life a little easier.

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Yellowfin for the Kids

Florida Sportsman member: PaulBoat

Went over to the channel this past weekend. Joseph wanted to put one of his little buddies on the tuna.The bite was tough in the channel as you’ve seen from several reports but we did manage to bend some rods and bring home three 60 to 70 pounders and a couple of smaller fish.

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Jupiter Phins

Florida Sportsman member: SonarSup

After that I decided since the bite seemed to be in the 400 to 500 foot range we should stay there. I turned back out to 500 feet. Got to 500 turned around and started heading back to 400 and saw a large green turtle with about four dolphin under him.

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Wife’s Biggest

Florida Sportsman member: Barrell

I had my fingers crossed but I had a feeling the wind would be more then predicted. Anyway lines in ,fish on ,and she reels in her biggest mahi to date. She was thrilled and the winds were picking up so I turned back toward the inlet and called it a day.

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Solo Bull

Florida Sportsman member: Aftershock

It’s been a month since my last trip and was well rewarded for the long wait. It was kinda ugly in the am but the phone radar showed it was going to clear. Trolled all morning to no avail between 280 and 420 feet, strong current and blue water. Found a slight rip in 300 feet off Jupiter and at high noon the flatline goes off.

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The Maiden Voyage

Florida Sportsman member: CNTDR

Within about 10 minutes of trolling the long starboard reel starts screaming, rod is bent over double, and all the wire is off the reel leaving only about 50 yards of the backing. I was worried that the wire to mono connection would break, fortunately we remained tight and after about 15 minutes we slid that wahoo thru the transom door and the congratulations began.

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Bahamian Hoo’s

Florida Sportsman member: PaulBoat

We checked in, topped off and got out hunting. Looking for the right conditions led us north of Memory. Pounded that area between 100 and 400 feet, running big lures at 15 knots. We steadily picked at them and put eight fish in the box (seven hoos and one fat king).

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Patterning Them

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Management

I think the fishing is in a good pattern right now, the steady dose of light north winds have finally allowed us to develop a pattern. The sails are moving in nice packs from 110 to 130 and 180 to 210 feet. Mixed in are the usual kingfish, Mahi and some cobias on the flat (deep) rods.

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Port Everglades Action

Florida Sportsman member: brianuf5220

We pull up and my wife snags a wahoo on a vertical jig under the mouth. Bar jacks were everywhere and could not keep baits away. I decided to jump in, saw about 25 to 30 wahoo under the water that would stay deep, but come up to the surface every now and then. I shot a dolphin, rainbow runner and a triple tail (Federal Waters).

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Palm Beach Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Management

The beach has spinner sharks migrating down it so its a great way to hear action. 10 to 20 feet from breakers to dodge wall is holding large schools of sharks. 20 pound spinning gear makes it a blast. In the mix we managed a 39 pound cobia and lots and lots of sails.

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PBI Sailfish Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Capt Tommy

A little while later another fish came up on the same short kite. Also aggressive he ate in one bite and headed for the long bait. This one I was ready for and came tight quickly. He didn’t even skip a beat. Despite me pulling on him he took drag right to the long kite bait. I tried winding it out of the way but he inhaled it. Holy cow!

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Breaking Marina Records

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Management

Action was off the condos in 130 to 150 feet, with 143 being the hot number. Goggle eyes were getting pounded all day and we broke off a few and had some 30 plus pound fish sharked, but managed a 42 and 45 pounder on the marina scale and broke our current record.

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Making it Happen

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

I had a chance to get on a 306 Grady white,just like my old boat, with long time friends Deep Dropper and Jim. The forecast was sporty, but we decided to try to get across for a half day.

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SLI Action

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Two minutes later we had a HOT sail lit up behind our daisy chain. It was lit up and going back and forth between dredge, chain and pitch. I pulled chain away, Fred expertly dropped back, sail ate, was in air, jumped twice and we were tight!

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Dinner Guests

Florida Sportsman member: greenie-slayer

Saw some reports recently of some nice tripletail being caught and thought I wouldn’t mind inviting a few home for dinner. Sunday we headed out with my dad and brother and the first spot we pull up too yields a nice seven pound tripletail.

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New Years Wahoo

Florida Sportsman member: Lazy Bones

Pretty good swell with chop on top for the ride home, luckily we were cruising in the troughs. Lucky enough to see the first two sunrise and sunsets of 2016 from the boat and catch some good fish go along. Hopefully it’s a good omen for the rest of the year.

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Boynton Bull

Florida Sportsman member: Reel Retreat

I thought I saw a huge flash of mahi blue but wasn’t sure so I didn’t wanna get my hopes up. But when I saw a cow around 10 to 15 pounds hit the other line as we were clearing I knew then it was a pair and this thing put on a show.

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SLI Tunas

Florida Sportsman member: Maribella

Another pass and I’m in the process of setting a rigger bait in the clip and the line starts smoking for a few seconds then nada. It turns out it was a blue marlin that went over to our other rigger bait and popped off before we had much to say about it. It did put on a nice show on the surface as he was greyhounding away though.

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Bull in the Inflatable

Florida Sportsman member: b1gdog83

I caught and release a few more slingers. I came across some type of blue plastic 15 gallon bucket/drum. I trolled passed it and get hit (big bull) on my 12 pound test spinning rod. I was losing line fast and was afraid I was going to get spooled. I was by myself so I had to back down and fight the fish at the same time.

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Southeast Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

We set up shop at about 7am, and within two minutes we had a nice gaffer in the box.
We reset and get SMOKED, this time it’s a nice king. Put em back out and a stud Wahoo misses the first time, then comes back at 50mph and gets it!

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Evening Bite off Boynton

Florida Sportsman member: bluechip

I’m on the reel and start reeling like crazy as he’s definitely eaten it by now. The clip pops, I come tight, he goes crazy. We were treated to a very nice show for 10 minutes and had him to the boat.

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Maiden Voyage Success

Florida Sportsman member: dpdash

Found great conditions in 200′ and put a couple of ballyhoo’s out. Ended up finding an incredible edge with huge mats and flyers in 600′ with nobody around. After 15 minutes we found a few dollies and a little tuna for sashimi.

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Southeast Bottom Bite

Florida Sportsman member: colossalcatch

We headed over to another spot that is known to have some big gags and blacks all over it. Set back up and threw out some flat lines and started bending rods , once again muttons and mangos were hitting the deck.

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Jupiter Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: Black Attack

Crew wanted to make a run for it, so offshore we headed to the swordfish grounds. Before we even got our full spread out, the long feather chain gets nailed and gaffer Mahi on. Landed the fish in short order and reset our spread.

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Hoos on the Other Side

Florida Sportsman member: paulboat

Long story short, we worked hard for it. Water was dirty, got one north of Sandy and the rest at the corner where we found clean fishy water.

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Inflatable Phins

Florida Sportsman member: b1gdog83

On the way back in we stopped at those same weed lines we saw on the way out and caught two 8 pound fins. We had the school around the boat a couple times but just like the fins under the wooden crate they seemed lethargic and were not hungry.

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Weekend Recap

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Managemnt

The action started in 140 and was hot all day from 70-130 feet from trump to breakers. We were able to hook lots of fish and the lady anglers did their best and we captured four nice fish over three hours. They were able to get 4th place dolphin and 4th place King however the prize money was paid only three prizes.

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First Place Hoo

Florida Sportsman member: 1974Donzi

The fish was brought to the boat quickly and we didn’t realize it was a wahoo until it was right next to the boat. Fish was landed (21.6 lbs) and total chaos broke out on the boat! Sarah knew right then and there that she got her first wahoo and possibly first ladies tournament win. She lost her voice from screaming she was so excited!

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Fish on the Weeds

Florida Sportsman member: Mike Butcher

It didn’t look like anything was on it, so we threw a weighted mullet under it and counted to 10. Both of us came tight on fins and got them in the boat. We also caught one triple tail on a live mullet.

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First Place Phin

Florida Sportsman member: Chasentailz

So we made the call to run past the fleet. Got about 12 miles out and found a slick with some decent weeds on it. Started chunking and in no time a school of nice sized dolphin were everywhere.

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Father and Son Time

Florida Sportsman member: PaulBoat

We made it to Old Bahama Bay in under two hours, topped off the gas tank, cleared customs, got our slip, set up our lines, shore power etc. We then untied around 2pm and went out to catch dinner.

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A Bakers Dozen

Florida Sportsman member: LET’S GO

We catch two or three more and work for some time and it was either quiet or the bells are ringing as we ended up with a baker’s dozen of decent size dolphin. They are not all that big but they are easy to clean and very tasty, we threw back several that did not meet the size limit and hopefully the next trip out they will still be around and have grown considerably and put up a lot more fight.

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New Marina Record

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Management

110 feet just south of Juno today, 4 inch micro goggle eye on 12 pound spinning gear, customer fought it for 30 minutes. Was 54 in the boat and after 2 hours weighed 49.89 on sailfish marina tournament scale.

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Birthday Hoo’

Florida Sportsman member: 1974Donzi

Justin just turned 21 years old and wanted a big wahoo for his birthday. Started off high speed trolling at 5:30. No hits so I change it up to mullets at 6:00. I noticed there were plenty of flying fish everywhere so I put out a white and blue islander over a big split tail mullet on the shot gun line about 400 feet behind the boat. As I was setting up other lines, the shotgun line starts screaming.

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Southeast Offshore Bite

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Ran out to the deep and found SICK conditions like Bill and others saw. Thousands of baits, acres of mats and starving dolphin.We caught 10 schoolies before we found the bigger fish and boxed several nice gaffers in the 15 to 20 pound range.

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Summertime Phins

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Management

Nice temperature break in about 120 to 150 feet out there with a color change. There are schools of dolphin and big dolphin around it. We’re averaging about 12 fish per charter. Get out there and get you some.

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Deep Water Gold

Florida Sportsman member: catch’emall

We decided to sneak out for half-a-day between storms and try our luck on tilefish. It took us a while to find a hungry colony, but worth the effort. Ended up with my first double header and our limit of five.

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Bahamas Wahoo

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Forum member e-money and friends got into a hot wahoo bite off of west end. Six bites in an hour, with four coming to the boat. Nice!

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Dodging the Storms

Florida Sportsman member: BigNiner19

We had a nice knock down but didn’t stay hooked and have no idea what it was. Then after a driver switch and turn back south the drag starts screaming. Brought up a real nice black fin tuna. This fish was not leader shy one bit.

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Fishing for a Cause

Florida Sportsman member: Jfenn10

We decided for Saturday’s Bigdog Fatcat we were gonna fish some other spots south. Well it turns out it was the right move, we killed it. We ended up with 9 kings from 11 to 26.7 pounds, a short cobia, 4 keeper muttons up to 4.5 pounds, bonita, and some other bottom dwellers.

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SLI Cobia

Florida Sportsman member: LET’S GO

We then headed East to deeper water and found some promising changes in the surface and we deployed our live bait, we did some chumming and quickly gathered some large sharks behind the boat with a few good size cobia.

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Stuart Sails and More

Florida Sportsman member: Captain Dave

Back out to a different edge in 135, toss one bait out, went to grab the second rod and I look back to see a sail already chasing our first bait in the water. Talk about stopping on top of one!

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First Place Phin

Florida Sportsman member: Seamanator561

I slowly bring the fish close enough for Mike to reach out and stick a perfect gaff shot right in the melon. As him and Yoan fight to bring him into the boat is when I realize how big he really is. We get him on the deck and reality sets it!

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Fish Filled Weekend

Florida Sportsman member: greenie-slayer

We moved deeper to 200-300 feet, no bites. Well we thought no bites. As we reeled in the deep rod it had a small blackfin tuna attached to it. Weird thing was he wasn’t hooked. The circle hook just around his tail. We must have been dragging in backward for a long time because he came in dead as a door nail.

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SLI Cobia

Florida Sportsman member: LastMango

Forum member LastMango got into some cobia off Stuart in 65 feet. Bull Sharks were the ticket to success for these fish.

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Treasure Coast Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: P@t

“Lots of life in 65 feet, so we lowered the riggers and started trolling. First knock down was at 7:20, small gaffer fin. Reset and continued to work a rip, south. Second knock down shortly after, spooled us before we could get control…”

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An Adventure to Costa Rica

Florida Sportsman member: greenie-slayer

Got the chance to venture down to Costa Rica in March to get away from work and do a little fishing. Fished with Tranquilo Charters out at the FADs. Ended up getting my first marlin and roosterfish. Got a lot of bites from marlin but being the noob that I am to marlin fishing most came unglued.

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SlI Sailfish Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Sea Monkey Too

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Finding Fish in Vero

Recent inshore fishing reports from the Southeast region.


Finding Fish in Vero

Florida Sportsman member: palmbeachpete

Even with all this wind you can find a place to paddle and fish. All you have to do is do a little homework and have a little luck.

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Smoker King of a Lifetime

Florida Sportsman member: e-money

Smoker King

After a 30 minute fight, we see a huge flash of color. I’m still hoping for another wahoo like our recent 74 pound fish. A few minutes later, I get a good look and I am shocked. It is a 58 pound king, hooked in corner of its jaw.

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Quick Catfish

Florida Sportsman member: Shark Bait

Quick Catfish

Using cut pilchards and team work, my boys caught, landed, dehooked, took pictures and released six big gafftopsail cats in less than an hour.

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Surf Fishing Sharks

Florida Sportsman member: sandwashslugger

Surf Fishing Sharks

At times, I could count ten sharks within sight. I was literally sight casting to these guys. It’s a royal pain re-tying these rigs on the beach, but as quickly as I could get another rig ready, I would be hooked up within minutes.

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Indian River Variety

Florida Sportsman member: landshark

Indian River

The next fish is one that I have been trying to get on all my wade trips and it has eluded me every time. Rich pulled up this fat mama trout in the 24-26 inch range.

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Indian River Wade Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: landshark

Indian River Wade Fishing

We walked along the mangrove shoreline and ended the day with one more snook. It makes you wonder, what if we had fished the South side earlier in the day and got on the morning bite.

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Fort Pierce Snook Frenzy

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.AW

Fort Pierce Snook

Since the season has opened, the snook bite has been absurd. For a little over a week, it was every bait as soon as it hit the bottom. Most have been in the slot or just above. Bait, on the other hand, has been tough.

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Sunset Snook Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Aquaholic IV

Snook Fishing

A buddy and I ran down the South Fork looking for Sheepshead, but found Jacks. Then we worked the docks where we caught Snook, some bigger than others. Finished the night landing five and losing six on my small rods, it was a battle.

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Tasty Fort Pierce Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: SLW UroCane

Fort Pierce

Hugged a few mangrove shorelines and released ten small snook and three reds. Again using live shrimp on 1/8 ounce HookUp jig, but floated it from a popping cork. Then went South along the East side of the river. Water was clear and the pompano were skipping! Caught four fat ones, used Goofy Jig, 3/8 ounce.

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Fort Pierce Variety Bites

Florida Sportsman member: FISHHUNTR

Fort Pierce

Getting on some fish each trip, some more than others, usually several under slots a night and some bigger fish on the jigs. The other night was jack after jack in two areas I fish (10-15lb). They ran me off. I literally got tired of catching them.

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Stuart and St. Lucie Inshore Variety

Florida Sportsman member: snookcook

St. Lucie County Inshore

We ran back up the river some and found a seawall. Threw a mullet up on it and connected with a nice 32″ Snook. After a ton of acrobatics & close calls with the engine & trolling motor, we boated the beast.

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Fort Pierce Channel Marker Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: Telese

Fort Pierce Channel Marker

We put in at South bridge Fort Pierce with four dozen live shrimp and hit the markers. I rigged up the small spinners with 10 lb braid, 30lb flouro leaders, and 1/8 ounce white hook up lure jig head. I feel with the small 1/8 ounce head I can feel the slightest sheepshead tap better, only problem is that the hooks bend after a couple good size ones. We had nonstop action all day.

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Stuart Snook and Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: snookcook

stuart snook

We boated about 20 under slot and managed one nice 31.5″. We also landed a really big fat snook, a little over 24″. Several trout landed in the boat all keepers under 20″. Ladyfish, jacks, mangrove snapper, and a flathead catfish also made appearances. We went through about five dozen live shrimp from the Snook Nook. Landed the biggest snook on the snook jig. Four or five of the trout and others were caught on soft plastics with 1/8 ounce jigheads.

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Targeting Tripletail

Florida Sportsman member: lunkerman

Targeting Tripletail

Dad got the first bite on the vudu shrimp. Turns out to be the biggest fish of the day. Caught three more on the same marker, two on live shrimp, two on vudu. Got one more off of another marker along with a nice sheepshead before the wind picked up and the tide went slack and the bite turned off.

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Outfishing Dad in Stick Marsh

Florida Sportsman: Collin Brown

stick marsh

If you ask 9-year-old, Collin what he wants to be, he’ll say a professional fisherman and hunter. He and his dad fished Stick Marsh in Fellsmere, where he caught 17 bass using shiners. Dad didn’t catch any! Keep it up, Collin!

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Saint Lucie Redfish, Trout and Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: lunkerman

Saint Lucie Redfish

I made the move to the gulp shrimp on a hookup jig. Popped from dock to dock and nailed a nice slot red. About 25″. I found a nice school of trout and got four keepers within ten casts. All really nice eating size at around 20-23″. At this point I’m thinking slam and look for my snook. A few minutes later I get the bite and he’s taking drag and it must be a snook….right? Finally get him out in the open and get a look and it’s not what I want but a cool surprise nonetheless.

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Fort Pierce Snook and Tripletail

Florida Sportsman member: Telese

Fort Pierce Snook and Tripletail

We put in around 5:15am at the south bridge and threw some hawks for about 30 minutes or so and produced a 31″ slot snook. The tripletail were plentiful out there today. Caught numerous shorts and three 16″ and one 22″. All on live mullet except the biggest which inhaled a live small blue runner believe it or not.

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Fort Pierce Snook: Know Your Electronics

Florida Sportsman member: FISHHUNTR

Fort Pierce Snook

The HDS isn’t quite as good as marking fish as hummingbird, which is what I used to have. After playing with some settings, I think I have it dialed in. I ran across a spot that showed several laying on bottom. First cast results in a 30″ Snook! Gave it a few more casts, just for the heck of it. Landed a 21″ black grouper and a short snook.

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Palm Beach Inlet Variety Bites

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Management

palm beach inlet

I know it’s been windy but the inshore bite has been very good. The tarpon are swirling. The jacks and snook are around and under them. Pitch small gogs, or big pilchards on light line around them and wait.

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Jupiter Inlet Variety: Redfish, Snook, and Jack

Florida Sportsman member: timswriter

I was shocked to see that they both caught Redfish in the Jupiter Inlet which is not something I hear happening a lot. Ricky managed to score a slotty while Pete’s red was just a tad too short.

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Fort Pierce Tripletail

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.AW

Forum member Capt.AW has been on some nice tripletail in the intracoastal.”Been running the markers the past few weeks. Gulp shrimp, jerk baits, and live shrimp on a jig head have been the baits of choice.”

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SLI Bite

Florida Sportsman member: greenie-slayer

For the next few hours no sardine lasted more than 10 seconds after hitting the water before getting a fish on, countless numbers of sharks and jacks. Jumped two poons on the day and saw a bunch of snook that weren’t fast enough to get to out baits before the jacks did.

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Jetty Action

Florida Sportsman member: SLW UroCane

I’ve been doing pretty good on pomps lately, limiting out three days this past two weeks at Fort Pierce jetty. Using a Doc’s Goofy jig tipped with shrimp, pink/pink, pink/white, pink/yellow.

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Catching Dinner

Florida Sportsman member: Fowlplay87

I caught some more mullet and it wasn’t long before her rod was bent over, landing her biggest to date and first slot snook followed by a second and a pile of nice jacks. We ended the trip around sunset with the last mullet getting eaten and up comes a 25 inch gator trout, her biggest to date as well.

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Spring Time Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Capt. AW

The bite has been great lately using pinfish, croakers, and greenies. Drifting or anchored, around the inlet and bridges with very few fish in the slot.

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Fort Pierce Inshore

Florida Sportsman member: Capt. AW

The river bite is on fire. With the cooler weather the river plummeted into the high 50′s low 60′s depending on locations and tide. I prefer fishing midday low tides when it gets this cold. We have been beating down the docks, mangroves, flats, and catching a nice mixed bag.

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Fernandina Surf Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Amelia Paddler

Started out an hour into the falling tide, dirty & flat water so I had no high aspirations for a good day. I ended up getting slammed right off the bat with a 31-32″ red and lost another one in the wash that was a bit smaller. Managed a few keeper whitings for lunch tomorrow as well.

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Night Time Bite

Florida Sportsman member: FISHHUNTR

Moved around a lot more and ended up in the inlet. I was slow rolling a jig and got a vicious hit followed by line screaming off the reel and figured I was into an overslot snook, up pops a fat gag which taped out at 29.25 inches!

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Fort Pierce Inshore

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.AW

The redfish bite has been good for the past few weeks. We have been soaking cut bait,ladyfish and pins primarily, in the dirty water and doing well with the reds. Most fish have been in the slot with a few just barely over.

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Fishing with Dad

Florida Sportsman member: lunkerman

Well today’s trip showed me that you should always listen to your papa! He dropped down a berkley gulp crab on a sliding sinker rig and boom! It wasn’t 30 seconds until he was hooked up.

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Fort Pierce Night Bite

Florida Sportsman member: FISHHUNTR

Tried a few spots before finding the fish and once I did the bite was on fire! Landed several shorts on the spooltek, two of which were 27 inches and picked up one on a freelined live mullet. I put a bait on the bottom as the tide slowed and got two reds, one just under 27 the other just over 27 inches.

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Summer Fishing Fun

Florida Sportsman member: MattBudd

The snook fishing has been as good as it gets in the inlet and my charter customers have been taking full advantage of that. As you will see from the pictures I have attached. We caught and released a 51 inch slob in July which is still the big fish of the season but many others in the upper 40 inch range.

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Southeast Inshore

Florida Sportsman member: LilJim

Last week my buddy and I did a few short trips throughout the week. We had decent luck at the mosquito impoundments for snook and reds. We also picked up a nice flounder and a few black drum as well. Lots of giant croakers out right now as well, some pushing up to 20 inches.

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Indian River Reds and More

Florida Sportsman member: Telese

Indian River has been packed with snook and reds! Started fishing around 6 am between midway rd and the power lines. Went out with some buddies wading who have done well the last few days. A couple over slot snook, trout, ladies, jacks, and reds. Bass assassin sea shads on 1/8 ounce twist lock heads did the trick today.

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Southeast Snook Bite

Florida Sportsman member: bsnookn584

The last few nights that I have been able to get out have been really productive. Some spring mullet are starting to show up, so I have been using some larger artificial’s. Targeting small schools of mullet when you can find them, and fishing swimbaits low and slow around bridges and seawalls have been key.

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Topwater Time

Florida Sportsman member: Net 30

Went out at 6:00pm and fished for 90 minutes last evening before lightning chased us off the water. Found a nice little piece of shoreline with good bait and had a blast with my oldest son.

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Treasure Coast Sight Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: palmbeachpete

I went to Ft. Pierce and fished north of Little Johns Island. It was a little windy and the fish were shallow. Had a great time and will be back there again soon.

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Slammin’ in the Canoe

Florida Sportsman member: ReelLefty

We loaded up on bait with a throw of the net and drifted along the shore line with a decent south wind and incoming tide. Fish were also picked up on gulp jerkbait.

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Father and Son Fun

Florida Sportsman member: SLW Urocane

We then worked the flats for a few hours, both if us tossing Vudu shrimp. We caught about 7 trout, including a nice fatty . We moved and worked a few mangroves and went 2 for 3 on snook.

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Vero Beach Reds

Florida Sportsman member: SS Canoe

I also put my mom on her personal best trout, an excellent weekend slamming the fish. I’m still looking for those big snook to show up in numbers on the flats. They make for some interesting eats in shallow water.

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Treasure Coast Reds

Florida Sportsman member: summer daze

We did manage 4 slot redfish, one 25 inch trout and a snook. We released everything to fight another day, We were throwing vudu shrimp and sebile soft mullet.

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Beach Sharkin’

Florida Sportsman member: AlexAngler

We had a few runs and within half an hour I had landed a nice black tip shark that was 5 feet 3 inches, I was thrilled! It was awesome to come to a completely new area and with help from you guys on the forum do good and catch a nice shark!

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Treasure Coast Reds

Florida Sportsman member: SLW Urocane

Got out this afternoon with a buddy who wanted to try a few of his redfish spots in north Ft. Pierce. We worked the mangroves out of the wind and landed 7 slot and 1 over-slot fish. Kept our limit one each for some blackening. Go to bait was mullet.

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Epic Bass Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: inshore dave

“All fish were fat, healthy and beautiful. Once hooked, they all, even the dinks, fought with attitude. They were all released unharmed and healthy. We were off the water by 4 p.m. We didn’t see another boat all day.”

Want to catch bass like these? Click here for how-to videos, feature stories, and more.


December Inshore Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

Doa Terroreyz has been a major go to with the colder water, bouncing bottom in the deeper holes and ledges. The pompano bite has been pretty good, find 66 to 68 degree water and you should be in them, as well as a good tide, higher the tide, the further they push back, and a lot of people don’t realize this.

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St. Lucie Snook and More

Florida Sportsman member: snookcook

Hooked up with a sweet snook that turned out to be a slot. One more and I guess we could go home. We went out to get one slot each & only planned to fish a couple hours. We had been out not even fifteen minutes and we had two in the boat.

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Stuart Pompano

Florida Sportsman member: Captain Dave

This morning Brian and I decided to give the pompano a try for a few hours. The tides weren’t exactly convenient for our tight schedule, but we weren’t more than 15 minutes into fishing when Brian nabbed a fatty that was 19 inches to the fork of the tail.

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Pompano from the Pier

Florida Sportsman member: Compleat

Forecast said to pass on the offshore but my missus was in fishing mode. We tossed the rods in the car and hit the pier. We started off slow but picked three nice pompano.

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Tournament Win and Nice Reds

Florida Sportsman member: SS Canoe

With my direction he whipped his doa into the feeding fish, bam, hooked up. Got the fish in and pictured, a 20 inch red. About this time the were finger mullet being showered along the mangroves. A quick pole over, a hookup and a picture was all we needed and he was 2/3 done with the slam that I knew would win this tournament.

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Indian River Night Bite

Florida Sportsman member: snookcook

I prefer to fish at night or in the evening mainly to avoid the sun. Plus, the night time is the right time! The docks have been holding tons of trout and snook. The tarpon are here in huge numbers in the river and on the beach. We jumped a few this week, got lots of hits, and landed a few.

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The Trout are Chewin’

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

“September is here and so is the bait! The finger mullet schools throughout the South Indian River are the ticket. Fishing these schools with topwater lures and suspending twitch baits below the schools have been great…”

Want to catch tarpon like these guys? Click here for how-to videos, feature stories, and more.


From the Spillways to the Beaches

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

“Now’s the time to get out there and pull on some bruiser snook! Been catching them in the river all the way to the beach. If you can find clear water on the beach sight fishing these big breeders is a blast (really gets the adrenaline pumping watching one eat)…”

Want to catch big snook like these guys? Click here for how-to videos, feature stories, and more.


Tangling with Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: SaltyRoots

We’ve been fishing the beaches early morning and late afternoon for tarpon. Mainly from kayaks and paddleboards but some days it’s easier to catch them from the beach. The tarpon have been crushing bait pods from Vero Beach to South Patrick. Pogies, pilchards, glass minnows, and now mullet have been schooling just outside the breakers.

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From the Spillways to the Beaches

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

“Now’s the time to get out there and pull on some bruiser snook! Been catching them in the river all the way to the beach. If you can find clear water on the beach sight fishing these big breeders is a blast (really gets the adrenaline pumping watching one eat)…”

Want to catch big snook like these guys? Click here for how-to videos, feature stories, and more.


St. Lucie Beach Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: snookcook

“Fishing has been awesome! Tarpon are in, snook are popping, trout are munching, and snapper are snapping! Some reds are around too, just have not been targeting them. I have been getting a good mangrove bite, in the St. Lucie and Indian River on both tides.”

Want to catch tarpon like these guys? Click here for how-to videos, feature stories, and more.


Hot Snook Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

As we progress into the full swing of summer the snook bite has been on fire. Whether fishing the beach, inlets or backwater, all of it is good right now. Mostly throwing artificials and fly and sight fishing a lot of them.

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Cobia From a Bridge

Florida Sportsman member: landshark

My buddy Ryan has made some impressive catches over the years, including the Juno pier record Cobia a while back. He’s back at it but this time he did something pretty unusual and landed a keeper Cobia on a Bridge at night while snook fishing.

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Spring Snookin’

Florida Sportsman member: OverslotsOnly

Recently, the snook seem to be keying in on baitfish. Any kind of whitebait or mullet are great when available, but don’t overlook blue runners, especially closer to the inlet, ladyfish, or sand perch. If a certain type of bait isn’t around, try something else that’s more available.

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South Indian River Bite

Florida Sportsman member: capt charlie

Our best fishing has been around the mangroves this past week. We have caught redfish, snook and trout in those areas. Our redfish have been up to 32 inches. The snook have beaten us on a number of occasions where we couldn’t slow them down before being broken off under the mangroves. We have caught some nice trout in the upper 20 inch range this week as well.

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Welcome to the Neighborhood

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

Well last week the girlfriend and I scored a new place on indian river drive. With a 540 foot dock to fish and many fish to catch I’m in heaven. The fish have welcomed me to the neighborhood in a the nicest way possible, letting me catch them!

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Stuart Snookin’ with a Bonus

Florida Sportsman member: MinerCatch

After cleaning the boat i decide to pull an iron man now that i feel like an insomniac and decide to go fishing inshore with my buddy Ben. Ended up with a few stud snook all of which were in the upper 40 inch range and a decent 29 inch trout.

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Monster Snook and More

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

I knew it was a snook by the way she smacked the topwater. The fish came up and shook her head and I realized the size this fish had! I loosened up my drag and started to play this fish to make sure I had the best chance and landing it. Don’t forget this is with only 25 pound leader and a 2000 size reel. 8 or so minutes of me doing the dance with her and some pretty epic head shakes I had her!

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Fort Pierce Snook Bite

Florida Sportsman member: dukhuntr1991

I loaded up on bait this week so we went out to drown a few tonight. The bite was on when we got there and we had a 34 inch fish in the boat 2 minutes after pulling up. Caught a big jack and also caught a 32 inch keeper before heading in.

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Stuart Snookin’

Florida Sportsman member: Bullshark

We hit it hard the last few days. All in all we caught about 50 Snook and 1 Red. 3 of the Snook being slot fish.

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Snook Fishing In The Cold

Florida Sportsman member: Marker954

These cold fronts have been great for loading up the deep channels with big snook. We fished during the recent polar vortex (aka a cold front), and landed six of these nice snook and got hit by 8 others. Here is Tom Lewis with a nice 39 inch oversized Fort Pierce schoolie from Tuesday night using a First Light Tackle snook jig.

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South Indian River Bite

Florida Sportsman member: capt Charlie

We spent some time in the turning basin of Fort Pierce with the jacks, runners and ladyfish to finish off the morning. Cheryl, Frank and Steven were out on the two windiest days of the week. We caught lots of fish, but had to hide from the worst of the weather. Frank finished off the trip with a nice Spanish mackerel. It was a fun time on the water this week in spite of the conditions.

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South Indian River Bite

Florida Sportsman member: capt Charlie

Redfish have been hanging around docks and mangroves lately for us. Try a CAL paddle tail around the mangroves and docks. The trout bite was slower this week mainly due to the windy days keeping us off most of the grass flats. We did catch a few short snook around the mangroves while searching for redfish. The black drum and sheepshead are moving into the river and you should see good catches of them in the next several months. Try bridges, docks and channel edges for these species.

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Backwater Reds Are Chewing

Florida Sportsman member: evergladeskid243

Worked my way into some mangrove cuts and started jigging the current rips and points and found a nice lit up 27 and a half inch redfish! He inhaled my DOA jig and gave me a fun tug o war up in the tight mangrove canal, trying to catch the line on down branches and roots!

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Seeing Red In The Southeast

Florida Sportsman member: SS Canoe

Not 10 minutes go by and I get slammed by a big fish big, it boils and I knew It was red. Got him to the boat and he stretched the 30 inch mark. Biggest red I’d pulled off that flat in years. Boom Cole’s on, We Boat the redfish, 25 inches. Great 2 days before the front. Like clockwork!

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Winter Time Wading In The Southeast

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

Throwing Mirrolure lil jons on 1/8th ounce jig head just hopping them through the grass, and that was the ticket! second cast with mine, boom, a trout. After that it was every other cast catching them. No gators but kept the rod bent. Did hook one and realized he got really heavy half way through the fight, brought him to my feet and he was sawed right in half by something, and I didn’t want to find out what it was.

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Great Fishing With Mom In Vero

Florida Sportsman member: SS Canoe

I have fished the lagoon since I was a young child, but after all these years I have never taken my mom fishing. well, recently I bought a little Carolina skiff that is much more stable than my old jon boat, so I decided it was time. Excellent introduction to fishing the lagoon! Ended up with 4 reds up to 27 inches, and she caught 3 of them.

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Dinner On The Flats

Florida Sportsman member: SLW UroCane

Got out and fished solo today. Had to deal with rain and wind all day. Fished mostly the Round Island and Moorings area. At least the bite was ok. DOA Cal and MirroLure suspending twitch baits were the key. Caught trout, pompano, ladyfish, jacks and a small red. Kept the pomp for dinner. Water color was terrible, as expected, but the bite was fairly steady.

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Night Time Stuart Action

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

Was getting ready to leave till I saw this bruiser cruising the shadow line, pitched a live bait in her face and watched it get destroyed. From the bridge she only looked 33 inches or so but realized she was a lot bigger when hooked. Measured out to 40 inches.

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Light Tackle Mayhem

Florida Sportsman member: Snookslayer772

The sun started to go down and the finger mullet started to pack up in tight schools and were getting busted. I threw my topwater in a school of mullet and no more than 2 twitches later BOOM! I thought it was a slot fish till I saw it jump and realized it was way over slot.

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Fort Pierce Variety

Florida Sportsman member: FISHHUNTR

Pitch out a 6 inch mullet and immediately it is crushed, I thought it was a jack initially but noted it was really digging for the bottom and that got me hoping. Sure enough I see color and it’s a keeper gag that ended up taping out at 27 inches!

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Sebastian Inlet Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: Final Point

We Landed one more nice red before we called it a night. Fishing is starting to pick up in the inlet. Saw several tarpon role to the south of the inlet but they didn’t want to chew. All in all it was a great day of fun fishing with some tasty treats for the cast iron skillet.

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Boca Midnight Snook

Florida Sportsman member: Dolphin_Hunter

The fish fought hard and I knew it was big. Never saw her. Luckily she went in the middle of the intercoastal away from pilings. I backed off on the drag since I was only fishing 15 pound braid with 25 pound leader. 10 minutes later, fish in the boat! 40 inch total length and a solid 18-20 pounds. Biggest snook I’ve caught in a long time. Super stoked! Awesome fight on a 4000 reel. Revived the fish and she swam away strong.

Read more: http://forums.floridasportsman.com/showthread.php?130701-9-29-SLOB-Snook-40-quot-amp-a-Slot-Boca-Pompano-Midnight-Mullet-Run-Bite#ixzz2gP8wvFa4

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Ft. Pierce Trout, Reds and Snook

Florida Sportsman member: Pensacola

Put together a little friendly inshore tourney against some fellow forum members. I was on my Gheenoe going against Ricky (seein red) on his Ranger and one other forum member who I wont mention…because he slept in! No showed the tourney, so it was just us against Seein red. Format was total length biggest red, trout, and snook, picture only.

We get out early in hopes to get a early morning trout. Plan comes together with a small 15 inch trout on a doa shrimp. As the sun comes up, we chum a little and castnet some nice pinfish for livies. We set up and I get tight on a nice 25 inch red. So we have a 40 inch slam so far. Around 9 a.m., I get tight on a really sluggish fish, felt like a catfish, no headshakes or anything. Get it to the boat and ends up being a big 27 inch gator trout. I think the warm water had him fighting weak. Quick pic, strong revival, and off he swam. So we have a 52 inch slam and im feeling good.

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3 Nights, 60 Snook + More

Florida Sportsman member: Joupdog1

The snook bite has been great to say the least! Before we got on the snook, Sunday I met up with my buddy Shane and we got on the redfish up in Ft.Pierce! Sight fishing schools of up to 100 fish. All beautiful 26 to 28 inch fish. Dad also took the boat out and got a stud 28″ trout at midday. At night we’ve been bridge fishing the shadow lines in the St.Lucie and found plenty of snook willing to eat. We totaled 33 on our first night out with the biggest being right in slot. I went wading down in Jupiter with my buddy the next evening and wasn’t disappointed. Only 2 snook were caught, but both were slobs. My first one being a fat, 38 incher that about made it to the channel on my little 2500 Stradic.

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Gator Trout and Monster Snook

Florida Sportsman member: Joupdog1

Decided to head out to a flat that had been good for trout and within the first 5 minutes hooked up on a nice 26 inch trout! Snapped a few pictures and released. We worked the flat for almost the rest of the evening, but it only produced 5 or 6 slot trout. I mention that maybe we should work a little closer to the docks on the way in. We move in and I land a cast about 30 yards from the nearest dock and hook up! My little 2500 Stradic is screaming! The fish pushes a huge wake as it beelines for the dock. Somehow I turn it before it gets to the dock. After about 5 minutes, I finally get a half jump from it and see it is a huge snook. Once I’ve got it close, it decides it wasn’t done and takes back off on another 15 second run. 3 jumps later, it’s landed! My 12 pound braid/30 pound leader held up and I could tell immediately that it was my new personal best.

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Trials & Tribulations of Fishing a New Spot

Florida Sportsman member: Joupdog1

Left the house bright and early with Dad, ready to go explore somewhere new. Knowing the wind was going to kick up out of the south, we headed up to Ft.Pierce. We launch the Gheenoe in calm conditions and made a run to a dock line that looked good. We dropped the trolling motor and reached for the rods, except we left them in the truck at the ramp. Fifteen minutes later, we’re back in position. We catch some baby tarpon sized ladyfish and big drag screaming jacks to start things off. We move more onto the flat and catch 6 or 7 trout up to 18 inches, but nothing too good. We cut over to the other side of the river and hide from the now strong south wind behind some of the islands. Dads 1st cast, nice flounder! Next thing you know, we had 2 small mutton snapper and a nice mangrove in the boat. About 9:30, the action slows down so we go to the channel and make a run.

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Flats Snook on Topwater

Florida Sportsman member: SS Canoe

This monster snook busted my rapala skitterwalk in 2 feet of water.The fight was on, and what a fight it was. After 10 minutes of screaming runs and ticking line, I got him in with no frayage on my 25 pound flourocarbon leader.It made a great addition to a slew of topwater snook this summer. You have to trust the topwater in order for it to work for you. Don’t switch lures or move around. Make long casts and walk the dog to the best of your ability.

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July Fishing report

Florida Sportsman member:capt. charlie

July brings hot weather, chances of afternoon rains and Fourth of July parties. Oh….and lots of great fishing out there, too! Watch out for afternoon thunderstorms this month. Mornings on the river will bring action at first light on top water lures for snook or trout along the flats. They will seek deeper water as the sun rises. It’s a hot, but very productive month around the Treasure Coast.

I will be fishing along the mangroves for snook and redfish with DOA shrimp, CAL jerk baits and top water lures, like the new DOA Airhead, where the water will be 2-3 feet deep. Trout will move to deeper flats in 2-6 feet of water and will most likely hit pigfish, DOA shrimp or Deadly Combos. Look for the trout to move to the deeper edges of the flats as the sun warms up the water. Fish the sand holes on the flats! You will find the bigger fish sitting in these holes waiting on the tides to bring the food to them. It has been another banner year for big trout around the area. Redfish will continue to hold up on the flats. Read the water as you move across the flats and look for any activity that might be a school of reds. Gold spoons, soft baits, like DOA shrimp or CAL jerk baits will work best for them. Search along the docks during the day for snook or redfish hanging around there as well. It’s a fantastic month to be fishing…

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Fort Pierce Mixed bag

Florida Sportsman member:Capt.AW

Thursday the 13th we had plans to look for permit or tarpon on the beach. It took a while, but we finally found the permit and managed to pull 3 mid teen size fish from the school.

Friday the 14th we went out looking for the permit again, but the water temps dropped almost 9 degrees overnight. Knowing that our odds of finding them at that point were slim to none we made a long run up the beach to look for some tarpon. Once arriving we found big pods of bait being worked by some bigger mackerel and snook. So we decided to stay with the bait and pull on some snook. We ended up landing a few in the upper slot to over slot range then called it a day.

Thursday the 20th Joe, Dj, and I headed out hoping to find those beach snook again. Upon arriving at the location things looked bleak the conditions or more importantly the bait wasn’t there. From there we bounced around to a few spots but ended up coming back in catching a couple decent snook and reds.

Friday the 21st I got an early start to meet up with a buddy who’s been telling me I need to come down and get on these monster snook he’s been catching. While we didn’t get any true monsters, I did get one in the high 30’s that probably went 20lbs or so. My buddy was gracious enough to hop in the water to make the release but wanted me to crop his head out of the photo


Stuart Causeway Redfish

Florida Sportsman member Jermos

I had Friday off so I decided to wake up at 5:30 and take a mini excursion from Stuart to a spot I usually kayak fish near Ft. Pierce. No signs of any activity which was unusual, spent almost an hour there and called it quits. Went back south for some breakfast then tried one of the beaches in search for a surfin snook, no luck. Left the beach around 10am headed back home to Stuart, on my way over the causeway I noticed the glassy conditions on the north side of the river and couldnt resist. I normally overlook this spot a lot, but when I pulled up there was all kinds of surface activity. I was able to castnet a school of nice sized pilchards, and quickly waded out with one on my light rod. I had him tail hooked free-lining for maybe 10 minutes when I got bumped and rod almost ripped from my hands with the drag screaming. Definitely thought it was a good sized jack or small shark from the violent head shakes. Fish made numerous violent runs before I finally get a glimpse of the tail, a big red?!! Yup, dont know exact length but she/he was a lil over slot. Surprised as a kid on Christmas morning, I got out the gopro for a flick. Then released it and called it a day by 11,


Inshore Slam in Stuart

Florida Sportsman member: Joupdog1

Decided last minute to go scope a new spot with Dad this evening and what a good decision that was! Arrived around 6:00pm and were greeted by mullet running with big jacks chasing them. No takers there, so we continued to work down the docks and flats. Finally hook into a nice fish and it goes airborne quickly. First thought is snook, but it’s a 26 inch trout! We start to work back at 7:15 and it absolutely went off! We notice some fish busting so we each launch a cast into them. Immediately double up both fish screaming drag, mine tires pretty quickly as it was a big blue runner. Dad’s on the other hand, just never stopped. It would scream drag and kind of circle around him. Finally get a look and it is a MONSTER trout. Dad gently eases it closer and I grab it! Absolute monster. Get some good pictures of it and release. Just over 30 inches and Dad’s personal best….

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Ft. Pierce Reds

Florida Sportsman member: evergladeskid243

Launched out of the $2 fee Torpey Rd boat ramp around 7 a.m., paddled out and was greeted by a high tide with no current movement which made things tough right off the start. Threw topwaters but only got one bite/miss by a nice trout. Didn’t land the first fish until around 9 or 10 a.m., which were a mix of small trout and jacks. Paddled across the river to the far east side and missed a huge trout who tried to eat the spook jr twice, catching the hooks the second time only to come unhooked, bummer! Next cast I hook into a nice red who gave me a nice ride before I landed him. Beautiful colors on him, he was all lit up and bright orange, a perfect specimen for the GoPro! Dont know how long, didnt bother to measure

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Snook in the Shallows

Florida Sportsman member: SS Canoe

The snook always seem to be more aggressive during the summertime and I have been catching a lot by sighting out the snook, waking and throwing topwater in front of them. They have been hitting it almost everytime. My cousin Cole has never caught a big overslot and i told him that this is the time of year to do it. We set out at about 6:30 and started bombing topwaters. Not too long after the sun peeked out of the clouds, I spotted a wake, a big one. Cole casts a little too much on top of him, and bam! The snook attacks the lure and Cole has a hookup!

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Beachside Snook

Florida Sportsman member: BigNiner19

NOAA calling for some really rough seas, so I elected to leave the boat on the trailer and grab a rod and some snook lures and head down to the beach. Good action, snook busting on bait and looked like some schools of bluefish were mixed in. The winds can make it a challenge fishing from the beach, but timing is everything. Ended up landing a few nice snook. Caught one inside the slot but let it swim away to fight another day.

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Fort Pierce Snook, Trout & More

Florida Sportsman member: Pensacola

Hit the flats this morning with Ric

Wreck Fishing Snapper

Recent offshore fishing reports from the West Central region.


Wreck Fishing Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

Wreck Fishing Snapper

While anchored on a wreck in 100′ of water, we chummed heavily and caught a lot of big yellowtails with a lot of them in the 20-23″ range. Also caught a huge mango in the 9lb range that was 27″.

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New Port Richey Variety

Florida Sportsman member: micklej1
New Port Richey

We headed southwest out of New Port Richey to check out some more of the numbers provided by spear fishermen that previously owned the boat. The spot produced red snapper, gag grouper and several undersized red grouper.

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Fort Myers Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: Veikx

Fort Myers

Bountiful keeper red grouper have made it into our box. The goliaths were hungry, as were the sharks.

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St. Pete Tuna Madness

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

St. Pete Tuna

While drifting I saw a splash on a piece of sargasm so I threw another cigar minnow and boom, hit immediately. Was it a Dolphin? Nope, another big blackfin, but even bigger. This bad boy was 28lbs.

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West Clearwater Fishing Variety

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

Clearwater Fishing

We decided to stay at 45 feet and caught lots of grunts, gags, one goliath and six hogs.

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Full Moon Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

We got a little over 30 mango’s with a few slobs mixed in. We got one 27″er over nine pounds and a handful more in the low to mid 20″ range, as well.

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West Central Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: Royalflush

West Central Offshore

Rich grabs a rod, live shrimp, and points to a small piece of debris, which we putter over to and see a big dark shadow underneath. Showtime! First pitch, the dinosaur inhales.

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Offshore Variety

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

Offshore Variety

Got the chum flowing and the mango’s and yellowtail made an appearance. Got five nice sized yellowtail and a handful of really nice mangos, all on sardines.

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Offshore Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: john martin

Offshore Mixed Bag

Normally I start with dead bait, as it gets the chum started, but I decided to drop a livey down. I was barely on the bottom when, bang! Nice one on. Turned out to be a gag around ten pounds. This would be the first of many.

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One fish, Two fish, Red Snapper, Red Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: anglingarchitect

Red Snapper

First drop trigger fish, then keeper red snapper’s before bottom is hit on each drop. We let out more rope, but they were covering this spot. We caught a couple of 22″ gags, also went back. Finally, we move into a ledge in 90′ and same story we couldn’t catch one mango. We lost count at 50+ red snapper.

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Skyway Mixed Bag in Rough Seas

Florida Sportsman member: john martin

Skyway Mixed Bag

The weatherman might be right, as it was raining and the wind had picked up to 20 knots. Still fishable, so what was the big deal? Mangos bit from the start so conditions were easy to ignore. The big goozers were chewing on live pinfish.

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St.Pete Snapper, Hogs and Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: junglejim

St.Pete Snapper

A bit sporty in the morning, seas were a good 3-4′. Stopped in 75′ and red snapper everywhere. Most were 14-16″. Decided to head offshore to 100′ on some ledges with the same result, red snapper again. Did manage two red grouper. Wind finally started to subside so we decided to head in and try for hogfish in 45′. Manage to catch three with one nice male that my sister caught.

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Fort De Soto Snapper and Gags

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

Fort De Soto Snapper

The plan was to hit a wreck with good relief – fish should be stacked up after the front last week. We made it out and anchored up. First bait down got slammed by 34″ gag – then it was on. We got our limit of four – all 30-34″, released over a dozen 30″+. Only lost one to the cudas- video attached.

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Bouncing but Catching

Florida Sportsman member: john martin

grouper

I heard some yelling from the stern which turned out to be a young kid who landed Gag over 30lbs. Excited I fired down another and bang! Hooked up again with what I knew was another nice Gag. I had him ¾ of the way up when a Goliath Grouper nailed him.

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Trolling Dunedin Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: Joyfly

Trolling Dunedin Grouper

We landed a 31″ and 27″ gag in just a few hours. A third large gag was lost when it was cut off on the rocks. We were just off Dunedin in 30 feet of water. We pulled deep diving plugs about 150 feet back at about four knots. The bite was steady with good size gags.

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Trolling Anclote Key Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

Trolling Anclote Key Grouper

Went trolling for gags out of Anclote in 30′ of water and they weren’t thick but were there. Trolled for a couple hours and picked up 4 keepers. Smallest was 26″ biggest was 31″. Caught a few shorts as well. Water temp was 65, so perfect for trolling. Got two on 30′ divers and two on the 25′ diving plug.

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Clearwater Massive Tripletail

Florida Sportsman member: Moscador

Clearwater Massive Tripletail

After spending several days chasing macks and kings with only minor success, I devoted yesterday to finding a tripletail dinner. I’m glad I did. A monster tripletail ate my shrimp and put me through a fire drill.

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Offshore Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

offshore mixed bag

Bait was thick right off the beach. We ran out 12 miles – non stop action on bonito, spanish mackerel, barracudas, AJs and one cobia. The cobia swam right up to my GoPro. He had two small porgies in his belly.

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Offshore Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

offshore mixed bag

Bait was thick right off the beach. We ran out 12 miles – non stop action on bonito, spanish mackerel, barracudas, AJs and one cobia. The cobia swam right up to my GoPro. He had two small porgies in his belly.

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New Port Richey Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

newport richey grouper

My buddy caught a grunt so I grabbed it, cut it in half, sent it down and immediately got rocked! Keeper around 28″. My next drop was a squirrel fish and as soon as it hit the bottom it got hammered as well. Up came another 28″ gag.

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Taking the Kids Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

By the time I got the wire rod down and blue runner on he was out of site so I tossed him straight off the back, 5/0 circle hook, 12 inches of 90 pound wire , 50 pound flouro leader and 50 pound braid on a Shimano Baitrunner. Thirty seconds later the wahoo explodes on the runner, shooting out of the water like a missile.

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Catching in the Rain

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

On this, and many trips, it’s an honor to welcome the hard working, dedicated, FWC biologist, Mr. Joe Tarnecki and Ernest Jaramillo, on the Florida Fisherman ll. This is real, on the water, up to date, data:
Joe made a thorough study of our Marine’s huge mutton snapper.

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The ABC’s

Florida Sportsman member: john martin

I was soaking a large Pig fish when I felt my line move a little I put my reel in freespool (keeping my thumb on it) and let a little line out. Bang! I quickly closed my bail and started cranking. It was touch and go for a moment but I got his head turned and coming my way. Tip: Once you get a big fish turned and off the bottom just steady reel, avoid pumping the rod as this puts undo pressure on the point of hook up and can lose you a big fish. The bang turned out to be a 19 pound “fire truck” red grouper.

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West Central Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

Next stop was 120 feet. Managed to get a few Aj’s on fly and get a nice mix of snaps and gags.
After 3 hours still no Tuna. That changed as Matt was casting to AJ’s he saw something else swimming and made a cast. BOOM tuna!

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Full Moon Snapper and More

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Mangrove snapper tend to go “crazy” during the full moon periods. The full moon for July is 7/19/16 ay 6:59 P.M. We will be fishing a few days after the full of the moon. The weather prediction is picture Florida perfect, this should be a great one!

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Tarpon Springs Overnight Trip

Florida Sportsman member: Matt822

As the sun started to show we sent our first grouper baits down and boy did we get schooled on not leaving the big tackle at home, the daylight bite was really good. Even though I had my Accurate 30′s with 34 pounds of drag I only had the 80 pound test on them and it wasn’t enough to keep these guys away from the rocks or breaking off.

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Summertime Offshore Bite

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Our Florida is now one of the most populated states in the entire country. And, for very good reasons! Our climate is second to none, Our beaches are among the finest in the world, southern cooking is tops, and, never to be forgotten, our fishing. Florida is widely known as the Fishing Capital of the World.

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Open Season

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

For the first time in years both American red snapper and gag grouper season will open June first. The Florida Fisherman ll, Hubbard’s Marina, will be leaving on a 39 hour Middle Grounds and vicinity trip Tuesday, May 31, in search of American reds, gags, and a lot more.

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West Central Deep Dropping

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

3:00 P.M. sixteen serious, dedicated, anglers are ready for a 63 hour ‘Deep Drop Florida Style’ trip deep into the very heart of our Gulf of Mexico.

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Catching in Rough Seas

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Last weekend’s weather forecast called for 5 to 6 foot waves Saturday morning, then calming down some later on. Early Saturday saw 6 to 7 footers. Absolutely no danger for a boat as big as the Florida Fisherman ll. I decided to set this one out, but, Thanks to Mr. John Martin & Mr. Dylan Hubbard, we have some excellent pictures to share.

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Running West

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

Out we went to 110 feet and loaded up on red snapper, gags, vermillion and almaco jacks for a few hours. We ended up keeping three vermillions, everything else was released to fight another day.

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Wrestling with Aj’s

Florida Sportsman member: ericf

A 6/0 Mustad Big Gun assist hook, crimped on with 125 pound mono on the spot got straightened out like a pencil. These dang fish have some brutal strength, it would be a struggle to bend that hook with two pairs of vice grips that way.

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Grouper Hunting

Florida Sportsman member: Mako224

We cleared the Pass at 7AM and tried to locate bait. Nothing around the pass so off we went to 30 feet and caught pins, grunts and sardines. Then off we went to 100 plus feet.

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Mangrove Mission

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

We got the chum flowing and mangroves stated hitting the deck. Nothing crazy but steady, most in the 14 to 18 inch range, with a few around 21 inches. We worked and worked and got near our four man limit of forty with a lot of keeper throwback gags and even a 24 inch red grouper and 16 inch hogfish.

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Middle Grounds Action

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

On the way out we troll for kings and bonito. Bonito are excellent bait. After a Chef Tammy meat balls and pasta dinner it’s bunk time. We want to be ready for the many fights sure to come. First up, the hard to fool mangrove snapper.

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West Central Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: therobertbrooks

Ran about three miles to a wreck in 58 feet, although it’s only about 45 feet on top of the wreck. Noticed some suspended fish showing, so when letting my pinfish down I stopped it midway, and within about three seconds my rod doubles over.

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Anclote Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: BryanC

Went looking for gags with my buddies Chad and Conrad yesterday and we found them in 60 foot. We got our limit at the first stop, with one at 26 inches and the rest from 29.5 to 33. I even caught a 29 incher on an inshore rod later on while targeting mangos, but we already our six in the box so back it went.

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Mangroves and More

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

Slowly but surely the mango’s started coming over the rail. Got a few in the 6 to 7 pound range but the bite was kinda slow. Every once in awhile the flatline I leave out for tuna would get nailed and ended up being AJ’s just about every time, got a couple in the 25 to 30 pound range.

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Middle Grounds Mayhem

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Last week’s full moon Florida Fisherman’s over night trip deep into the heart of our Gulf of Mexico returned Sunday morning with the entire boat completely limited out, two day limit 20 each, of Middle Ground’s sized mangrove snapper.

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Deep Dwellers

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

We fought stronger than predicted winds and monster currents. Regardless, this, like all deep-drop trips, resulted in huge trophy fish never to be forgotten.

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Catching in the Gulf

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

That new outfit really worked out well for Dan. His ‘in the money’ jackpot winning snowy grouper hit the scales at a whopping 40 pounds. Not to be outdone, Dan’s very good friend, Ed, is ever so proud of his 55 pound wahoo.

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Awesome Day Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

We got to our spot around 8:45 in 85 feet of water. Started to chum and then sent down a few big baits and immediately hooked up with a 30 inch gag. Not a minute later my buddy starts hollering and it’s fighting a little different, it starts running out instead of down and we get it closer and it’s a nice 45 pound cobia.

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West Central Grouper Success

Florida Sportsman member: Thumper363

I got my dad, buddy, and my oldest little boy out for a late day start. One of those days where you get started way later than expected and don’t really have a plan. I decided to sip on some cold beer and spend time with the family and hit a couple gag spots, it paid off.

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Fishing the Deep Water

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Forum member harbison shared a recent trip aboard the Florida Fisherman II, as they headed out to the deep water to chase big fish.

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Catching off of Clearwater

Florida Sportsman member: Matt822

We headed west and watched the sun start to peek over the horizon as the anchor hit the bottom in 120 feet. The first stop produced a few mangos in the four pound range, three yellow tail and four gags in the 10 to 15 pound range. then the Aj’s came to play after catching more then enough of them we boxed three for some smoked fish dip.

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Mangrove Madness

Florida Sportsman member: Mako224

At 1:30 I chose to run out to 95 feet on some natural ledges. Once we dropped the hook and I allowed the Snapper Up chum to work the bite was on for the next three hours. We put 30 fish in the box with about 15 more thrown back, ranging from 2 two to eight pounds.

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Fishing the Deep

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Today’s gags are darker in color; they have not migrate to much deeper water. They stay very close to their rocky homes. They are not too happy with the idea of joining us for dinner.

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Pulley Ridge Trip

Florida Sportsman member: _norm

As dawn began to break, the captain signaled for us to bring our lines up so we could make the 3-hour trek to the deeper water in the 550 foot depth. Everyone prepped their electric gear and returned to the bunks for some more rest.

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West Central Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Forum member harbison and the whole crew aboard the Florida Fisherman II got into a mess of fish recently. Including big groupers, snappers, and more!

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West Central Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: Double Action

We went 40 miles out and my first drop with 50 pound tackle was a break off. Stepped up to the 80 pound setup and got a 25 inch gag. Threw back a couple 22 inchers and then got a personal best red grouper at 29 inches.

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Back on the Water

Florida Sportsman member: sagory

I haven’t been fishing in several months and was itching to go. The reports have said mangrove snapper fishing has been good so the plan was to try for those. Jim, and Scott and I left my house around 6:30 and made a quick stop at the bait boat for a big scoop of whitebait.

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Snapper on the Brain

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

One very good thing about Florida fishing is that there is always plenty of fish to fish for. When one season closes, another opens. Gags & amberjack are now closed; so what? We will be, ‘Targeting snapper.’ Red snapper, for head boats, is open until July 14.

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West Central Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: clarosa

I made a quick statement, after the bite slowed down “if we get a nice tuna now, we can just go in and forget the last two snapper”. Not 5 mins later, the big freelined pinfish rod’s baitrunner went zinging! After a 30 minute battle, a big blackfin is circling the boat ready for the gaff!

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Targeting the Big Boys

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

After a great Chef Tammy dinner, it’s bunk time. After all, we will be challenging the big boys for three days. OK! We are well rested and ready to go. So are the fish

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Tuna, Snapper and More

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Tuesday, let’s do it all over again. We are ready, I mean good and ready. The excitement level is off the chart. Our home for the next 39 hours, the Florida Fisherman ll, is loaded with enough food and drinks to supply a small army.

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Running the Bay Boat Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: SouthshoreSlayer

After about 2 hours of snapper fishing the flat lines start getting cut off. We didn’t have any wire or long shank hooks, we all rigged our big setups and the king bite was on for the next hour.

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Full Moon Snapper and More

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Most consider mangrove snapper fishing to be at its very best during the full moon periods of the month. Last month the Florida Fisherman ll, out of Hubbard’s Marina, fished three days after the full moon. We limited out on AJ’s (two day limit) and the mangos were on fire.

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West Central Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: sagory

We moved out to 115 feet and this is where we did the best. We weren’t too far from a wreck so we decided to try for yellowtails. We saw someone was on it so we changed plans and ran 13 miles back in to try for hogfish on a ledge in just under 60 feet.

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Hog Huntin’

Florida Sportsman member: slper

This was our second trip targeting hogfish and we found them. The great day started out a little cold and seas were 2 to 3, but it warmed up and calmed down. My wife, buddy Jimmie and I got our limit in under 4 hours.

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Fish for All

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Better hit the sack; after all, we will be challenging the monsters of the deep for twenty five hours of actual fishing time. Captain Garett has advised us to get plenty of rest; we are going to need it. After mango time we are going to this wreck known to be the home of Mr. Amber jack and family.

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West Central Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: sagory

We caught a couple fish but it was pretty slow. We moved on and both the breeze and the bite picked up a little. We were able to anchor and started catching a mix of red grouper and snapper. Troy had the fish of the day with a 24 inch, 7 pound mangrove snapper.

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Red Grouper Rampage

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Looks like all good things must come to an end. With well over 200 gray snapper and 30 large red grouper this will be a trip to be remembered. Let’s go ‘In search of red grouper’ again ASAP.

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Catch and Release Gags

Florida Sportsman member: OU-Pilot

Went out Sunday off Port Richey to some reef lines in 30 feet. The water was pretty nice all day. Temperature was 62 on the surface. We trolled some Rapala Mag 30′s and a stretch 25′s. Trolled about 2 hours from 3pm to 5pm on either side of high tide. Managed 5 gags with 2 double headers!

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Finding the Honey Hole

Florida Sportsman member: freshfromthesalt

In 120 feet of water, these huge, alien fish, would slam your stoutest meat stick against the gunwale again and again using squid, sardines, live bait – it didn’t matter. This would continue until your back gave out, fighting belt or not. Mixed in with these beasts were some amberjacks that you could not lift off the bottom and other fish, that, if you tried to, would break your terminal tackle somewhere in between hook and main line.

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Starting the Year Right

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

The Florida Fisherman ll, Hubbard’s Marina, is ready to challenge 2015 with the first ever 44 hour trip one hundred miles off beautiful Madeira Beach, Florida. We will be fishing a couple of days before the full moon; it just does not get any better than that.

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West Central Bottom Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

We went out friday and saturday afternoon to 70 feet of water. It was non stop gag action with some amberjacks, scamp, and mangroves mixed in. All were caught on live bait. Spotted most of the bait in 50 to 60 feet.

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Full Moon Mangrove Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Harbison

For the Florida Fisherman that means it’s mangrove snapper time. The mangrove snapper is one of the best eating, most abundant, fish Florida has to offer. They can be found from very shallow bays to way off shore. We will be fishing 100 miles off beautiful Madeira Beach, Florida.

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Trolling for Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: freshfromthesalt

Despite high wind and big seas we were able to get out to the trolling grounds for one last meat trip before the upcoming closure. As usual, gag grouper trolling ace, Justin Spigener, put us on the fish even in relatively rough conditions.

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Grouper Grand Slam

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

That’s it! The boat has completely limited out on grouper; and that’s a two day limit of 8 each. We are still a very long ways from Madeira Beach, Florida. Let’s feast on that Chef Tammy steak dinner, with all the trimmings, and hit our bunks. We are tired, I mean really tired; grouper wore out tired.

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Clearwater Offshore Bite

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

It was take the neighborhood kids fishing day! Headed out at 8:30 and tried to get bait. It was tough but managed to get a couple dozen runners, grunts and a few squirrel fish. We went out to 55 feet of water and set up. The AJ and gag action was non stop from 10:30 to 12:30, all caught on live bait.

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Veterans Day Fun

Florida Sportsman member: OneLandOneSea

Headed out to 65 feet of water for some kings and grouper. Bite was slow but caught two nice 32 inch gags and broke off a bunch more. We lucked out with a nice 20 pound cobia on the bottom too.

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Trolling for Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: freshfromthesalt

I hopped aboard the gag grouper catching machine, the Grumpy Grouper, and trolled up some of the fattest fish I have put on the deck this season. We caught fish from 27 to 35 inches and no shorts. Limited out and back to the dock by noon.

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Fishing with an Old Friend

Florida Sportsman member: sagory

We left my dock around 7:30 and headed to 40 feet which is about 7 miles out. It started out slow but after some hopping around we found some fish willing to eat. We ended up with 4 gags and 5 red grouper which was a little surprising.

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Fun for All

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

Monday evening we went out 12 miles and anchored up. On the way there saw schools of cigars minnows and spanish sardines and loaded up 5 at a time. We were in 50 feet and the area was covered in small baits. We caught gags, cobia, barracuda, spinner sharks and Ajs.

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West Central Offshore Bite

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Whenever cold fronts move into the gulf the pressures starts to plummet, this causes the fish to go into a feeding frenzy because they know the coming storm will stir the water and prevent them from feeding easily. So the days leading up to a front are great fishing, but then the day the weather blows up the fishing stops.

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Catching a Mountain of Fish

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Three P.M. friday afternoon, Madeira Beach is under a severe storm warning. As we board the Florida Fisherman ll at Hubbard’s Marina, we can not help but wonder will this overnight trip produce, ‘A Mountain of Fish,’ or be a complete wash-out?

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West Central Bottom Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Jerseygirl

We ran south and hit some hard bottom spots that were very productive. The current was strong and the bite was on at most spots we hit. starting out with dead bait, then switching to live once the fish got chewing. We started out with a couple smallish red grouper and some medium sized scamps, then the bigger fish started to show.

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Shallow Sailfish off St. Pete

Florida Sportsman member: Jcclark

About 15 seconds later our flat line starts singing and as soon as my friend grabs the rod the sail starts dancing on top of the water for about 15 yards. I broke off on my fish and jumped up and pulled the anchor. We chased it down and after a great fight we were able to boat the fish for a few pictures and get it back in the water to revive it.

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West Central Offshore Variety

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Once again time for a 39 hour adventure that defies the imagination. Our weekend home away from home is Hubbard Marina’s Florida Fisherman ll. We love to catch fish, however, what makes these extended trips really special is the chance to get to really know real sportsmen/women from all over the country.

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Hook and Line Hogfish

Florida Sportsman member: spanishsardine

I got the chance to venture to my new fishing spot. I call it The Spanish Sardine Fishing hole. We managed to catch 3 hogfish in 2 hours. We also caught triggerfish, grunts, porgy’s, gag grouper, red grouper, and mangrove snapper.

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Making the Run for Red Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: anglingarchitect

Forum member anglingarchitect got out during this short red snapper season. Making a long run, but producing some really nice fish!

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Monster from the Depths

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

The trophy fish takes Matt from the starboard bow to the stern, and across the stern to the port side. Finally, forty five minutes later, we see color, the color of a huge amber jack. Quick Will, the gaff. Kyle, get the other gaff; it’s going to take both of us to bring this trophy of all trophies over the bow.

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Mangrove Madness

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

The Middle Grounds, located roughly 100 miles north west of Madeira Beach, Florida, is a prehistoric coral-reef complex covering 461 square miles, and is home to 170 species of fish, including the hard to fool, hard to catch, mangrove snapper. Mango snapper are notorious bait thieves.

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Middle Ground Mayhem in the Rain

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Ms. Lisa Shouron, Tampa, refuses to let a little moisture rain on her day. Lisa, fishing out of spot number 10, shows that nice cobia who the boss really is, after all, Lisa is all woman!

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Sharks and Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: jewfish7

The bite was on right away for mangos with a few other tasty fish coming over the rail.Best mang bite this year for me but most were around 15 inches,but quantity made up for quality.The two biggest snapper of the day got eaten bye sharks just under the boat.

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Grouper on the Rocks

Florida Sportsman member: jewfish7

We did well for a few hours then the bite shut down, we tried moving around but was limited because we only had about 125 feet of anchor line. Towards the end of the day we drifted over the best shows and put a few more mangos in the box.

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Taking Out The Kids

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

We caught lots of short reds, a few keeper scamp and five good gags. the kids were reeling in a fish and about half way up it got blasted so I put out a mackerel we had sabiki’d up. Soon we had a shark on, a tiger shark. About 30 minute later another Tiger ate a red grouper right next to the boat.

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Grouper Limit Out Of Longboat Key

Florida Sportsman member: ericf

We came in closer to public numbers in 30 feet, and experienced the hottest grouper bite I have ever seen. Nonstop gags! Live blue runners, frozen sardines, regurgitated whatever from caught fish picked off the deck of the boat, nothing lasted more than 20 to 30 seconds. We limited out in about half an hour, and released a few fish after that. It was mayhem, totally crazy.

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First Foreign Kingfish

Florida Sportsman member: guifri

We are on vacation from Germany. Trolled around the crab buoys 1.5 Miles from the shore to catch some Macks. After a while put a white/red yozuri on the Second rod. It only lasted minutes until the drag was singing!

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100 Miles Off Madeira Beach

Florida Sportsman member: Harbison

Captain Mark Hubbard fires up the Florida’s two huge Caterpillar diesels and punches in the numbers for ‘One hundred miles off Madeira Beach.’ We are on a mission, a mission to catch fish. Will the mangrove snapper be hungry? Join the party as we find out together.

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a Long Trip Equals a lot of Fish

Florida Sportsman member: TennesseeDave

I got one red snapper and one large amberjack, some mangos, beeliners, and such. Some people did well and some people didn’t. The weather held out pretty good. At 1 a.m. on the way out it got bumpy for a little while but then softened back down so we could get some rest [...]

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Gags, Red Grouper & Rough Seas

Florida Sportsman member: flatsrunna

Pulled double duty today, had two 4 hr trips and again huge seas, but not as bad as the day before. We managed 6 reds and a batch of nice grunts before the current decided it wanted to move as fast as the breeze we were in. We got nice fish in 40 feet today. I love it when they are super close! We were in by 12 fish cleaned and headed to go get our next group.

2nd trip we got a good number of fish as the seas totally laid down in only an hr, loved it ! 28 knot cruise out and back and nice fish to boot !

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St. Pete Red Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: GASeminole

With the 10 knot West wind, the trip out was into 2 foot or less chop. Water was clean and flying fish started showing up around 50 feet. Schools of bonito were boiling every so often, saw a couple of king mackerel “sky” as well.

Stopped about 20 NM out, about 3/4 mile from a public number (found this spot while re-rigging/drifting one windy day and saw it on the sonar.) Anchored up and my wife and I caught 21 reds. Pulled anchor and drifted over area and caught 3 more. Released all but 7, the one pictured below was the biggest, and was my personal best grouper. All caught on live pins.

While we were out the winds died down and it was hard not to head farther west, but we had more than enough fish in the box and were happy to head home.

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Fort Drum Gag Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: glihon

Went out for some grouper Sunday from Ft D (finally my first trip since the season opened). No tidal movement and other issues in the morning made bait catching difficult at the small bridge. Wasted enough time so just headed out. Ran through a solid rain on the way but made it to the area we wanted to fish and the day turned beautiful. Weed pushed in from the west wind made the trolling difficult but we did get a nice 29-inch gag to the boat as well as 24-inch spanish. Started bottom dropping with the bait we did have and only found short rg. Tried ledges in 45 feet, 55 feet and a wreck in 40 feet.

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Shallow Water Grouper off Anclote

Florida Sportsman member: Juicebucket

Got the boat wet around 6:30 and headed out to the island for bait.

Whitebait was super thick and super tiny. After getting about 450 net wreckers and a couple dozen pins we headed back into the river to fuel up and ride. We hit the GPS and made the long 5 mile run to his first spot. When I think grouper fishing I think straight drops on 4/0 reels and falling to my knees to yank them off the bottom. This was a whole different ball game. The water was so shallow we had to anchor way off and cast to them just like if we were mangrove or dock fishing. Basically once you hook up you have to drag them across 50 feet of bottom that they can wedge themselves into rather than yank them vertically 10 feet until you’re safe. I’ve never had a 24 inch gag fight harder then the ones we caught on this trip. Shallow water fish have a different gear, I swore everyone was 30 pounds during the fights and the bruises on my arms and hips are testament.

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Mixed Bag out of Bean Point

Florida Sportsman member: JEIBE

After casting off out of my place at 530am in palma sola we were met with beautifully calm seas out of bean point. We stopped at the 3 mile north and quickly filled up on cigars and pins. From there it was a nice 43 mile run out. We got 31kph at 2.1 mpg on the freshly re worked 250. We got to our spot in 147 feet and immediately were greeted with a Christmas tree on the foruno. It felt like 20 minutes and we had our boat limit of keeper snapper. they were loving the threads more than anything. We then moved to a barge in 80 feet and of course had the water walking with bonita, sharks and cudas. A captain in a contender came up and asked to share the wreck. He then unloaded hundreds of white bait in to the water and it was game on with monster cudas, mango snapper, sharks, golaiths, bonitas and some baby amberjacks.

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Rough Conditions and Worthy Catches

Florida Sportsman member: Jayzilla

After another 2 hours of getting the crap beat out of us we finally made it out deeper to the first spot. We made a couple of drifts and it produced a mixed bag of jacks, gags, and mangos. Anyone who has ever fished with me knows that I hate to anchor but with the stiff winds, big swells, and ripping current it was a must. We dropped the hook and it was perfect, 7 feet directly in front of the spot. The next two hours we proceed to fill a 150 quart cooler with big mangos. It would have been more snappers but we kept getting the occasional by catch or break off from big jacks or gags. Just before I decided to leave that spot I managed to catch a nice rusty belly on 30 pound snapper tackle. I actually broke the fish off earlier because when I got him up I saw two circle hooks buried in the corner of his mouth. Greedy grouper couldn’t stop eating those 3 inch pinfish.

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Sarasota Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: srqmynatt

We ran out to a spot in 135 feet between New Pass and Longboat pass, I had found these numbers back in April and new right away it was covered in snapper. I fished it once or twice in May just seeing what was there and found out the Mangos and ARS were stacked up 20 feet off the bottom. I brought the numbers with me and sure enough we marked a nice pile of fish so we set the anchor. We started with smaller gear and worked our way up to the red grouper. Had a nice mixed bag[...]

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Way Offshore – Grouper & Amberjack

Florida Sportsman member: Jerseygirl

We decided to hit some numbers past the 400 foot contour line. Definitely worth the run time, although next time need to budget for more line in the water time for further exploration. Spent most of the day running, but the fish were there. While we did come up empty trolling, deep dropping was interesting. Neil F. bagged a nice Yellow-Edge Grouper around 25 pounds and I managed a 50 plus pound AJ that hit on the bottom at 430 feet (not fun, especially when you are expecting another big deep-water Grouper). Looking forward to more time fishing this depth to better learn how to approach it.

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Longboat Pass Gags, Kings and More

Florida Sportsman member: rreed

We headed out of Longboat Pass at first light, with a few dozen shrimp and lots of old bait to cut up. The pinfish catching was slow, due to large blue runners tangling and breaking off sabikis. Wind and tide opposition made for slow going without getting soaked in small boat.

As we got out deeper the sun broke through the clouds and seas laid down for a nice day. We drifted for Red Grouper first, quickly putting keepers in the box around 90 feet. We saw some structure during drift and threw out marker. On second try we were on the spot. Given the last few trips RG success came quickly, we brought different setups and shrimp to try to diversify the catch. I brought a 4000 reel with 20 pound mono/ 20 foot 20 pound fluro sliding 3 ounce to 3/O hook, this caught all the mangos.

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St.Pete Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: 06powerstroke

Launched the boat out of Fort Desoto around 5:30 PM and cruised over to the Skyway to put a few live baits in the livewell, bait wasn’t hard to find at all. Cruised out to the pipeline at sunset, tried a few different spots and picked up a few Mangos hear and there. On our way to the next spot watching the bottom machine found a sweet spot! It was loaded with Mangos! Made short work of filling our limit and caught my personal largest. Just before the sun was coming up we cruised out to 125 feet of water to try and find decent AJ’s. Couldn’t find them anchored so we started trolling. We were getting Bonita one after another which is fun to catch for me but then the rod bent over good and line was screaming off. We hooked into a decent Blackfin Tuna! This was my first tuna I have ever caught.

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Snapper and Blackfin Tuna Action

Florida Sportsman member: Navy_Fishing

Headed out towards the Elbow to see if we could hit the big fish for a 2nd trip in a row. Started out fishing the Pipeline in about 155 feet and hit a few mangos here and there. Most were of decent size, 2-4 pounds. A few 5 pounders came over the side as well. Then it happened. One of the regulars, Ritchie hooked up with a fast moving fish that turned out to be a nice blackfin tuna that ate one of his pigfish being sent down on a knocker rig for mangos. I was working a 1 ounce jighead with live bait and got hammered about 5 feet off the bottom and ended up boating a 25 pound Blackfin.

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Prefront Bite

Florida Sportsman member: srchn4salmon

I was a bit skeptical only going about 9 miles out for Mangrove Snapper but the first 2 fish that came up were a couple small mangs. After that we did everything we could to get away from the “endangered” Gags. It was an amazing bite, every drop produce Gag after Gag. Thankfully a couple Mangs were mixed in to get some fish in the cooler. Finally tally for the day was 8 Mangs brought home, biggest being 21”, at least 40 gags with more than half of those being keepers. The biggest came on a triple hook up that we all managed to land our fish.

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[...]


An All Florida Week to Remember

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Florida weather, Florida fishing, Florida shrimp, and Florida hunting, all in one week. Who could ask for anything more? Sunday, three P.M., twenty eight emotionally charged anglers are ready to go, ready to challenge the monsters of the Middle Grounds. The Florida Middle Grounds, 100 miles Northwest of beautiful Madeira Beach, Florida, consist of underwater formations of stony hard and soft coral growths, ledges with twenty-thirty foot drops, and numerous ship wrecks. The 330 square mile Middle Grounds provides a natural aquarium for many species of fish and a tropical wonderland for the serious angler[...]

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MLK Day Snapper Trip

Florida Sportsman member: sagory

I had the day off of school for MLK day and the weather looked good for a trip offshore. I called a few buddies and we did the first trip of 2013 in my boat and it was a good one. We fished 90-100 feet. and the mangroves were chewing. Most fish were caught on light jigs or knocker rigs. We headed in around 1:30 and had over 30 mangroves and a handful of red grouper. The biggest snapper was just shy of 25 inches. It was a great day.[...]

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Hogs, Snapper, and Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: Navy_Fishing

Took out the dusky for it’s 2nd fishing trip since being completed. Had an old Navy friend come over from Lakeland to fish with us. I also brought along two guides that I have come to know since working at O’Neill’s, Capt. Lee Blick and Capt. Craig Weaver.We set out about 0800 and headed west. Got out to a snapper spot that has been good to us for the last few trips. Fishing was slow to start but picked up as we moved around the area to find the fish.[...]

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Foggy Snapper, Grouper, & More

Florida Sportsman member: Navy_Fishing

My buddy has been working for the last 14 months restoring an 85 foot Dusky. Some of you may have actually seen his thread on the Hull Truth. well, he finally got it complete and after a quick sea trial last Friday to make sure it floated and ran as desired, we decided to take her out for the maiden fishing trip. Left out of O’Neill’s at 8ish and the fog was still thick. After a slow trek out of the bay through Pass-a-Grille, we finally were able to get up to speed and head 30ish miles west. seas were a bit sportier than the forecast called for, but we pushed on with hopes they would lie down as advertised. Got to the area we wanted to fish and came upon a spot that lite up the bottom machine about half a mile from our intended stop. We dropped down some sardines and it was game on with the mangos and yellowtail. We boated 4 or 5 within the 1st 10 minutes and then the rudderfish hit us. We couldn’t get away from them.

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Kings in the Fog

Florida Sportsman member: rreed

I haven’t been able to get offshore for awhile, with my wife past 8 months pregnant I needed to stay close. The newest fisherman has joined the family and things are getting back to normal. On the drive to friend’s house was thinking I hadn’t gotten a king trip in this year, just a passing thought on long drive. Load boat with ice and old cooler full of old bait from freezer. We were met with a real challenge safely navigating to pass. Sabiki’d blue runners and cigar minnows, just outside of pass. Headed for 85 foot area we fished last few times out. Got two keeper Red Grouper on drift and tossed marker out. Started chunking old bait and caught short reds and grunts while slick built up. Once the chum was built flat lines didn’t last more than a minute in the water. Baits intended for the bottom didn’t make it. Didn’t prepare for kings, had 40 pound mono with circle hooks on flat lines. Lost quite a few, but landed some beasts [...]

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Middle Grounds Action

Florida Sportsman member: JerseyGril

The action picked up pretty quick with a Dolphin (small) right away, then a 20 pound class Blackfin Tuna not long after that hit the shotgun line. After that we were nearly spooled by what turned out to be a monster Kingfish around 60 pounds that we released, to bad there were not any tourneys going on as this fish would have won.The King hit a Marauder plug as did the next Tuna in the box (15 pounds), then were nearly spooled again on the same lure by a big fish that broke off after a 30 minute fight. That killed the party as we did not have any more Marauder plugs. Not bad action for 2 hours of trolling, unfortunately with short daylight this time of year, we had to crank up and make the run home soon after. [...]

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Clearwater Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

Got the kids up and decided to head out for a quick quick grouper trip . Found pinfish and blue runners a mile off the beach in 20 ft. Went to a good bottom area in 40 ft and anchored. Every bait down got eaten. We a mix of red and gag grouper with the biggest gags all taken on blue runners.After 2 hours our live bait was gone and it was time to go. The kids are reeling in a small red grouper and Im reeling up my bait. As we get to the surface a tiger shark goes after the red grouper, misses but grabs my pinfish and then tries to get the grouper again. i quickly back the drag off has he starts running – now hes tangled in the red grouper line, goes around the anchor, then heads back underneath the boat and kids are screaming “shark” non stop ! [...]

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Plenty of Scamp out of Egmont

Florida Sportsman member: perlmman1234

Went out with a buddy on his bad a** 35 foot center console. First stop at 20 miles or so and reeled in a couple keeper reds. Bait was northern mackerel live shrimp and live 2 inch greenbacks. Second stop was around 45 miles out and let me tell you the scamp were on fire. I cant remember the last time I caught scamp like this. Every shrimp down barely made it to the bottom. As you can see in the video there are no shortage of them at this spot [...]

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Plenty of Bait, Plenty of Action.

Florida Sportsman member: releasegear

A few of us had the afternoon open so we headed out of clearwater. Marked bait as I was heading out of the pass , steve threw the net out the back and loaded us up with scaled sardines. Took 3 of us to bring it in, filled the well and 2 five gallon buckets – still had the deck covered. Stop by the rube and toss out a few free lines. slammed right away and steve gets a cobia. Next bait out, slammed again. This one almost spooled my battle with 320 yds of 30lb power pro. I got a nice king. The boca grip was going between 38-42 lbs . [...]

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Pass-A-Grille Offshore Variety

Florida Sportsman member: yelladevil17

With the recent winds, we wanted to wait a few days until the water cleared up. My cousin Tan wanted to show some east coast friends what it was like to fish on our side of the state. We loaded up with lots of live shrimp, white bait, and frozen sardines. Great day to be out on the water…overcast clouds, slight breeze, small chop. Mystery sighting of the day: As we were going out, Tan spotted a sailfish…he said it popped its bill and sail out of the water while chasing bait. That would have been a cool sight, considering we were only in about 50-60′ and 20 mi out. We got to our first spot in 65′. Gene was the first to drop down a shrimp and gets railed on his light tackle setup. The fish kept digging and running all over the boat. After a tough fight, we netted a nice 35″ cobia[...]

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Box of Red Grouper, King for the smoker

Florida Sportsman member: CaptainBly

About 8 miles into our trip I see a really nice show on the screen. I Turn around and the bottom just exploded with color. Throw the jug. Drift it a couple times and some almost keeper reds come over the side. But way bigger than the last spot so we were hopeful. We decided to anchor.

Within an hour and a half we had our limit of Red Grouper and a nice king that is about to go on the smoker in about 20 minutes… Not a bad day for no plan,not hitting the water until almost 11:00am, and not putting a line in until noon[...]

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Spooktacular Mahi and Mangro Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: indabox.bc

“Headed out of John’s Pass Friday afternoon for some Friday night mangros. Ran into a school of mahi 30 miles out. Luckily, we had plenty of live whitebait to keep them at the boat.After an hour of mayhem, 33 mahi were In Da Box and we left them biting to get set up for the nighttime mangro bite[...]”

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Girl Power on the Grounds

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

The Florida Fisherman, Hubbard’s Marina, has been on dry dock for a few weeks. Spent my weekends attending Jesuit High School football games instead of fishing the Florida Middle Grounds. That is about to change, the Florida is back. Forty eight anglers and a crew of five are busting at the seams in anticipation. Let’s go! The weather forecast is great, the moon is full, the Florida is loaded with enough food & drinks to supply a small, make that a large, army. It’s time! [...]

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Fishing the Forty Fathom Break

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Friday means deep water time for the Florida Fisherman, Hubbard’s Marina. The moon phase is perfect for an all out assault on the ‘Monsters of the Elbow & Forty Fathom Break.’ Thirty dedicated anglers wait to board the Florida Fisherman ll. This is going to be all out war.

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Hogfish on Artificial

Florida Sportsman member: jewfish7

Monday’s trip hit a little snag when we got to the marina, they were out of live shrimp. We never head offshore without a livewell full of shrimp, everything eats them. Instead we got a box of dines and castnetted up some pins and greenbacks.We ran out to the pipe knowing that there is some big mangs out there [...]

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ARS Pay Back Time

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Friday, June first, 2012, American red snapper season opens. The very best to one & all, let’s go get them. Finally! It’s ARS pay back time. No more free meals.Forty four anglers, and a full crew, departs Hubbard’s Marina on the Florida Fisherman ll. We will be fishing two days before the full of the moon, the best time of the month. Will the fish be hungry? Let’s go see.

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Gag Reflex

Florida Sportsman member: flatsrunna

Took my buddy out today for a lil’ action, he hasn’t fished in 12 years. So I rolled up to the marina at about 9:30. Droped 300 dollars on gas, loaded the boat, and we were off to the nearest flat to catch bait. After a few tosses we had bait and we were off to the wild blue yonder. Feels like we threw back 100 plus fish today. Bite was sick.

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Giant Cobia in Clearwater

Florida Sportsman member: ericj359

A good buddy asked me if I wanted to go out on his newly re-powered Calcutta 263 well I said said “OH YEAH!” A lot different from the 18 foot Mako I usually run. We went out to our favorite cobia spot to see if anybody was home, it was pretty rough at 45 feet, in about 3-6 foot swells the boat handled it great. We ran 25 mph the whole way through it and didn’t get wet. Enough about sounding like a Calcutta commercial and back to fishing. We anchored up and started to chum and I hooked up on the biggest blue runner I’ve ever seen, it was huge! [...]

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Full Moon Mango Madness

Florida Sportsman member: Navy_Fishing

Showed up at Mango’s house and loaded the boat. Heading out to challange the GOM beasts would be Mango, Kokosing Lover, Manny (Mango’s friend) and myself. Got the boat in the water sometime between 12:30 and 1 PM. Headed out of Blind Pass and started looking for the bait. Got a few cigars and runners and then headed out to about 100′. Started to drift over form fishy looking hard bottom and I get hooked up by a big fish only to have my knot to the swivel come undone [...]

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Offshore AMI

Florida Sportsman member: JEIBE

Finally had a day off with school and work being so crazy so Capt Vern treated me to a trip. Started off at the 3 mile and sabiki’d up pins, blue runners, pig fish, sardines, you name it. We were going to run out to 100 or so in search of some big fire trucks but we found a bottom chunk we couldnt pass up. Several gag grouper in the large and larger range were caught. RGs got in the action as well with bringing 4 keepers home…between 20-23″ [...]

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Cobia’s out of Clearwater

Florida Sportsman member: ericj359

While most of you were fishing the king of the beach. I didn’t enter cause kings are a hit or miss with me. Headed out to a public wreck in 45 feet about 10 miles out looking for some light tackle bonita mackerel action, well that wasn’t the case. Filled the well at a bridge in the intercoastal so we started chumming, the first bait in the water gets slammed not even 5 minutes in [...]

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Middle Grounds Trip

Florida Sportsman member: harbison

Once again we challenge the Florida Middle Grounds. Once again the weekend weather prediction is less than perfect; in fact, down right lousy. Forty eight anglers hope for the best. Low pressure or no low pressure, we know what the Grounds has to offer. Most of us arrive at Hubbard’s Marina early. One reason is to watch the 1/2 day boat returning. Sure enough, the Friendly Fisherman returned one P.M. Friday afternoon. Grunts were targeted. Grunts, small but very good eating. Also some very impressive king fish and mackerel were landed.

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75 Miles

Florida Sportsman member: electricblue

Ran out for opening grouper and got on the mangos something nice. See the 8#er. Had the ARS chummed up from 200′. Folks these bastards have doubled in size. It’s almost like they know they get a free pass. Some sort of hope and change I guess…. $1000 in fuel, couple of fish, day on the water, priceless…Life is good.

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First Cobia- and much more!

Florida Sportsman member: timbo615

Went out to run the boat because it hadn’t been ran in a while. Engine had a hard time and thought it was gas. Got out 4 to 5 miles and started trolling. Dropped a big lipped lure down and was about to get the spoon out and boom the lure gets killed. Stopped the boat and he was not moving. Maybe I got hung up. Motor back over it and he comes out. About a 28 in gag. Have no idea how he got in the rocks trolling. I turned the engine off and when I went to turn it back on, nothing. I opened a compartment and smelled gas. The water fuel separator is spitting out gas [...]

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Kingfish out of Hubbard’s

Florida Sportsman member: TennesseeDave

Me and my neighbor went on Hubbard’s Sunday morning half-day. Trolling on the way out we caught a bunch of Spanish mackerel. One was at least 4-5 pounds (sweet). These were caught using a #1 planer and a green drone spoon off one of the corner spots. My buddy used a silver spoon with a small trolling weight wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy back [...]

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Cobia!

Florida Sportsman member: GEO

Cobia have started to show up at the mouth of Tampa Bay to just inside the Skyway Bridge in decent numbers to where I think we are going to have a great cobia year. On back to back trips we were able to catch four while sight casting to them. Pinfish or scaled sardines under a popping cork is a deadly combo for these brown bombers. They fight great especially the second time after they see the boat. Look for these fish to be around reefs, bridge pilings channel markers and similar structure [...]

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Gags, a Mango, and a Porgy

Florida Sportsman member: Navy_Fishing

LateAgain, Myself and an old Navy friend from Lakeland went out to try our luck with the Mangos this morning and to say the bite was tough would be an understatement. Only 1 Mango wanted to come home for dinner, so we of course obliged him or maybe her. Gags were hot and eating everything we dropped down. Sardines, live shrimp, dead shrimp. Largest went 11 something pounds [...]

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Big Gags and a Frisky Shark

Florida Sportsman member: jewfish7

The weather looked decent so I tried to get a crew together but only my buddy Kit could ride out,oh well time to go find something willing to put up a battle. On the way out about 12 miles out we see something that looked very stange, there was a loon diving down and there was a huge colorspot under him.We pulled up and to our surprise it was a massive whale shark with a school of bait fish all around him,the loon was diving down getting him some.I made the mistake of taking my eye off the whale shark fetching the camera,when I got he dove down never to be seen again [...]

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The Bottom Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Gordo35

Ended up fishing with 3 buddies today. I just put the boat back at O’Neill’s the other day and we departed from my lift around 6:50. Stopped at the PAG marker and got some smallish Pinfish to go with the live shrimp I got from the marina. Headed out to the Egmont channel markers and got some nice Sardines and Cigar Minnows to join the crowd in the livewell [...]

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Can You Say Tuna!

Florida Sportsman Member: timbo615

My uncle is a long time local who moved to Tennessee. Whenever he comes in town I make sure I have plenty of time to take him out. This past week Thursday-Saturday looked to be the best days. Took another person out with us, his son-in-law, never really been offshore before. We ran out to the pride in hopes of playing around with some aj’s. We get there and the aj’s are all over. Uncle throws out a soft plastic and gets hooked up. He saw that it wasn’t a aj as it was really silver [...]

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Big Pine Key Variety

Recent inshore fishing reports from the Florida Keys.


Big Pine Key Variety

Florida Sportsman member: Viking

Big Pine Key

On a recent trip to Bahia Honda State Park, I was able to find plenty of areas to catch tarpon, bonefish and plenty of other varieties of fish. This video covers how to identify productive areas and the baits used to catch fish.

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Lower Keys Tarpon Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: kayakerinkeywest

Tarpon Fishing

I had been smacking the tarpon pretty good before this wind started today. Hopefully this last week will be a great start to the tarpon season.

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Key West Backcountry Meat Hunt

Florida Sportsman member: kayakerinkeywest

Key West Backcountry

Had a couple of buddies who needed some eater fish for the weekend. We went out on Friday with Jose to the Gulf side backcountry for some cero’s and snapper.

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Big Pine Key Mackerel

Florida Sportsman member: piner_wahoo

Big Pine Key Mackerel

There are some cero mackerel pushing ten+ pounds right now. Unfortunately, there’s also lots of sharks out as well.

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Keys Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: kmagnuss

Keys Tarpon

In three nights of fishing we jumped 37 tarpon, 14 were landed. Out of the 37, all but two were over 50 pounds. I would estimate that at least 25 of them were over 80 pounds.

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Big Pine Key Mackerel

Florida Sportsman member: latitudeajustment

Big Pine Key Spanish Mackerel

Mrs. LA and I made a crack of noon start today and headed out back to see what we could find. Thankfully, the macks came to play.

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Lobster in the Keys

Florida Sportsman member: latitudeajustment

Lobster

I made a late run yesterday and thankfully scored two for my wife’s birthday. We got out today and found a few more. Great times and great eats!

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Keys Backcountry Mackerel and Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: piner_wahoo

Keys Backcountry Mackerel

Get some macks, lite off the smoker, it’s fish dip season! And tax time, too, but the tax man came to the boat this time. It was a 10′ bull who was very bitey. Snapping and biting at boat, fingers, etc.

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Keys Backcountry Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: piner_wahoo

Senior forum member piner_wahoo and some friends have had two consecutive successful days out in the Florida Keys backcountry. They left with some nice lobster, trout, snapper and grouper- but not without a lot of work.

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Cudjoe Key Permit

Florida Sportsman member: Bonecracker

After three solid days of poling her around all over the Keys from Marathon to Cudjoe all we had to show for our efforts but a sunburn and some empty beer bottles. Well all the stars lined up on Wednesday and we finally had a permit actually eat a live crab! The fish fought hard for 15 to 20 minutes and finally it turned over on its side near the boat and finally gave up!

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Lower Keys Bonefish

Florida Sportsman member: torchkey

The flats were active with sharks, barracuda, and bonefish. Had some good shots at bones and ended up with a couple of nice fish. Ended the day catching some trout for the dinner table. It was a good day to be on the water!

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August in Islamorada

Florida Sportsman member: syxx

Though my best days this week we landed 9 out of 12 tarpon in two trips, most in the 30 to 60 pound range. I’ve been fishing mostly fresh mullet that we catching first thing in the morning still in the backcountry. In the bays the trout and snapper fishing has been best out closer to the gulf. Here the water is cooler and also alive with various baitfish such as ballyhoo, pilchards, pinfish, mullet, and more.

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Tarpon Time in the Keys

Florida Sportsman member: syxx

I’ve been fishing tarpon since the first week of February and we’ve had pretty good early season fishing but now the real big schools are showing up. Just a few days ago we had a 5 fish day with most fish in the 60-100 pound range.

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Upper Keys Bonefish

Florida Sportsman member: Tailinreds05

We caught the last two hours of the falling tide and that’s when I picked up this chubby tailer with a well placed live shrimp. Had two other shots on the falling tide but couldn’t get them to eat. After the mid morning slack wore off and the tide started pushing in, the fish started showing themselves again.

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Fall Fishing in Islamorada

Florida Sportsman member: syxx

If you put your time in you can usually produce a bite or two, though not a guaranteed thing. Mullet is still the go-to bait, you just have to find them usually early in the morning. We’ve also been having some luck with big goliath groupers in the gulf plus plenty of big sharks such as bulls and lemons [...]

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Bahia Honda Slam

Florida Sportsman member: DogDoc

After a late night trip yesterday, we thought the best way to catch the midday outgoing tide while the winds allowed was to run up to Bahia Honda again. David and I bucked the east wind to reach the protection of the bridge, but found little relief from the wind and waves when we got there. The wind direction quartered the current, augmenting the waves and making it hard to keep baits where they needed to be. Weeds were also a bigger problem than last week.

We had several hits and drag pulls before the first hookup, but that ended up being a nice 75-pound tarpon. A few minutes later another hit but no hookup, then a bait down deep was taken. The fish ran long but stayed deep, and when we caught up with it we were pleasantly surprised that it was a 40-pound permit.

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Biscayne Bonefish

Florida Sportsman member: Tailinreds05

Decided to take a break from the back country out of islamorada and fish Biscayne with a buddy of mine. We left islamorada at 6 and drove up to card sound to get the skiff wet. We cruised the 25 miles or so out to the flats of Biscayne and I finally connected to the infamous grey ghosts. All it took was a trip out of Florida bay and the flats that I have come to love since moving to the keys over a year ago. We were throwing fly most of the day but this guy took a live shrimp. The fight was awesome 150 yards of line taken in 10 seconds.

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Lower Keys Permit

Florida Sportsman member: swordslayer71

Had a very short window of opportunity today due to time constraints, but definitely not due to weather. It was absolutely gorgeous. Flat calm and clear water, which is perfect for sight fishing Permit on the reef line. We took 3 crabs with us for 3 people. It took us about 5 minutes to start seeing a few small wads here and there and then we started seeing bigger packs. Once we found the larger groups it was game on and we traded in those crabs for 3 Permit.

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Lower Keys Cobia

Florida Sportsman member: swordslayer71

Today I had some time off and decided to go into the backcountry and hide from the wind. We were fishing one of my favorite summertime grouper spots in about 7 feet of water when the man in the brown suit decided to start inhaling the chum. I quickly plopped a pinfish in his face and after a good fight he was in the boat. We played around for a little while longer with some more mackerel and snapper then picked up and headed in. Tight lines.

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Islamorada Backcountry

Florida Sportsman member: action88

This cool weather is stirring things up a bit and the bite has been good-excellent, we had a few days in a row where we were catching 40 to 80 redfish in a day with some small snook and black drum mixed in. The permit showed up yesterday in a spot and we hooked 8 landing. We fought one for an hour and lost her right next to the boat. I estimate it at around 55-pounds, but we will never really know ( but makes a good story). Mixed in with the permit in the area were gag grouper, jewfish, and cobia.

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Life is Good in Flamingo

Florida Sportsman member: scottbrown

With weather finally cooling off slightly in The Everglades, fishing patterns are going through a transition period which has been resulting in some unbelievable action some days and other days are leaving anglers wondering what happened. Game fish like redfish, snook and trout have yet to take their winter refuge in the deeper canals and channels of Florida bay but are still very aggressive during higher tidal stages around mangrove shorelines and points north of the cape [...]

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Windy Days in Islamorada

Florida Sportsman member: action88

Well the wind is blowing and the weekend fishing report was SLOW for us, we managed a few fish for the “Casting for Cats” tournament on Saturday, but did manage the largest catfish award (winch my wife is extremely proud of). Sunday we managed 12 snook and that was it. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of last week was a different story, on Wednesday we fished skinny in the HPX and caught 20 or so so reds to 27 inches and some BIG snook all on jerkbaits close to home in Islamorada [...]

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Islamorada Backcountry

Florida Sportsman member: syxx

Well we had a gentle breeze out of the north this morning on 10/16/12, which had swung out shoreside of the cape area. Tides were extremely low back there this morning, lots of bird life including tons of roseattes showing up for the winter time. October fishing in Islamorada is great! We ran back to the cape today and hit some snook spots early on the low water, however not much action on the pinfish did catch a couple and miss a couple but the fish were funny [...]

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Solid Inshore Bite In Islamorada

Florida Sportsman member: action88

Well, I have definitly not been fishing as much, but the days we are going out the bite has been good to excellent. The flats of Florida Bay and the Flamingo area are holding lots of redfish to 33 inches, they are taking jerkbaits and flies, having a 30-plus fish day is not uncommon if you can get the bait to them. The snook are biting good, some days catching 20-plus fish with some big ones mixed in [...]

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October Fishing in Islamorada

Florida Sportsman member: syxx

October fishing in Islamorada is upon us! We’ve had some very low tides as of late, almost spring-like tides very unusual! Took my dad, Richard Stanczyk Sr., girlfriend Elizabeth Baxter, and one of the new main men at Bud n’ Mary’s Steven Byrd out for a day of fun fishing. Left early again out at 6:00 AM and made the run partially in the dark to the cape for some everglades snook fishing, deep into the everglades up around the bend of the mainland! [...]

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Key West Flats Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Capt. Gregg McKee

I’ve been lucky enough to spend two long weekends in Key West over the last month and even luckier to spend them on the bow of Capt. Mike Bartlett’s skiff. Mike is the kind of guide who will pull up to a flat and say “We should start seeing some bones here in about 15 minutes,” and 20 minutes later we’ll be landing our first fish [...]

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Islamorada Catch Report

Florida Sportsman member: action88

Hey y’all, well most of my days still are being spent in ENP chasing snook and reds and the fishing has been HOT, literally! The snook bite has tapered down some but we had some days catching 50 plus fish to 20 pounds. The redfishing is as good as it gets with most days catching 20 plus slot sized fish, with the rare exception of that 22 pounder we caught in a creek [...

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Islamorada Redfish

Florida Sportsman member: Lostmen Dan

Went down on Tuesday early to beat the mini season traffic. Turned out to be a good call. Launched at the public ramp on the Indian Key Spoil and ran a few miles into the back. First stop to check out tide and wind direction and we spot a group of 6 to 8 sheepshead working in 6 inches of water [...]

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Long Key Bay Trout

Florida Sportsman member: Tipbone

I headed down to Long key for the annual grownups vacation. We fished in the bay all week. The weather was good, but a bit windy. There were lots of weed lines everywhere, which would have been good had we been off shore and not in 4’ of water. This made the top water bite too difficult and made running out there tricky with the engine weeding up on both boats [...]

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Last Cast in Paradise

Florida Sportsman member: DogDoc

We’re finishing up our annual family trip to the Keys, and it’s time to head back home. We’ve enjoyed seeing some dear friends and making friends with a few each of over 30 species of fish during the trip. Several previous posts have shared the difficult fishing this year, from the almost non-existand dolphin bite to the spread-out tarpon season.

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Bahia Honda Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: DogDoc

We’ve had three shark encounters there this week, two at the boat at the end of the fight, and one early on. The line was immediately cut on the first, and we didn’t have time to do anything on the second. I blame myself for yesterday: we had seen a shark earlier, but he had disappeared for 10-15 minutes, and I was wrong to assume he had left [...]

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May So Far

Florida Sportsman member: action88

Well, May has been busy, I think everyone in Islamorada has been fishing hard and the fishing has been good. On the offshore side of things, I haven’t been doing to much due to the weather, but on the days we have gone out the dolphin have been good, no big fish yet for us, but lots of lifters, the gulf wrecks have been good with lots of 8 to 12 pound cobia, big trout, Jewish, and the usual gulf suspects [...]

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Team Teke Permit

Florida Sportsman member: TeamTeke

Well…my wife as usual showed me who was boss on the boat today. Tania caught a super-duper permit while I caught a little one. It was a grand fight for her. I hooked up first but that fish I think was eaten by a goliath as the leader was ripped to shreds. I’m sure that this fish would have been bigger than her’s [...]

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Islamorada Backcountry Report

Florida Sportsman member: action88

Well guys, spring is officially here, the weather has calmed down some and the fishing is EXCELLENT, most of my trips have been in the Triton Bay boat (new 24′ coming soon), with everyone from beginners to experienced anglers, the redfishing has been HOT, we are catching 40-100 per trip in the 22-33″ range all on pinfish, the snook have bit good when the tide and the water color have been matched perfectly, with most fish being slot sized and some little guys mixed in [...]

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Flamingo Snook and Redfish…and Permit!

Florida Sportsman member: scottbrown

Flamingo’s snook population has been on the rebound since the freeze a few years back and it is becoming evident that the snook are making a strong comeback. In the last few weeks I have consistently caught and released over 15 juvenile snooklets and they are very feeding aggressive. You need some extra knowledge of where they snook are holding up but once you find them its on. The juvenile fish are mixed in with respectable 24-28 inchers they have been deep in sweet water creeks and have been feeding aggressively on the higher stages of the tide along mangrove gulf shorelines. I have had a lot of success using Gulp and DOA jerkbaits.

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Cudjoe Backcountry

Florida Sportsman member: sparse grey

Was able to get out again today. Middle of outgoing 10-12 NE moderate chop, good drift across current near Kemp channel. Bunches of different kinds of fish. Many trout all upper slot, decent mangroves, lanes & yellow tail snappers. The YT have been a little scarce in the back lately. Also one of the largest porgies I have seen around here. Reminded me of the Party Boats in Wildwood Crest in the 50s & 60s. Best part was we didn’t need any fish so all were released in good condition. Bert with a couple before releasing.

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Shark Fly Tourney/Backcountry

Florida Sportsman member: action88

Well guys, the Keys are hopping with people and the wind has been strong (maybe the windiest March I’ve ever seen), with the average being 20 MPH and a week of 25-30.. well we had to do some comprimising and trailer over the flamingo to fish in WW bay because of the wind, its been a few years since i fished that part of the glades, but some of the ol bushes still held some reds and snook , nothing big but still good fishing for 30 outta the east [...]

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March Merkin’

Florida Sportsman member: Capt Mike Bartlett

Day 3 of the 2012 March Merkin yielded no permit on fly. The day started out with rain showers, lots of clouds and wind. We did get a few hours of sun on the oceanside to the west of Key West, unfortunately it was filled with acres and acres of nothing. We saw/scared a total of four permit on day 3, three of which three were together and not a shot. We also watched an airboat come from Key West burned down the flats, with very little water from the tower flats to Boca Grande Key and back. I heard the guy went between a few flats skiffs poling. This has got to stop [...]

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Back-country Fishing in Islamorada

Florida Sportsman member: syxx

Fishing this month in Islamorada, Florida Keys has been fantastic. The mild winter has kept our waters very warm and as far as the fish are concerned, spring is here. Tarpon have started to show up pretty good back in the cape area, all around flamingo and the everglades, and even in the bays in the local fly fishing holes on flat calm days. We had some good nights bridge fishing, catching several fish in the 80-100 lb range fishing early in the morning.

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Key West Flats in February

Florida Sportsman member: Capt Mike Bartlett

February brought us some unbelievable weather this year in the Keys. Plenty of warm days made for great days on the flats around Key West and the Marquesas. A few of the highlights include a three permit day, redfish on fly, tarpon at night and on the flats and plenty of barracudas, sharks and jacks [...]

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Winter Wonderland

Florida Sportsman member: scottbrown

The recent fishing adventures I have experienced in the past two months in Flamingo have been absolutely amazing to say the least. The fishing has been excellent with countless inshore slams and the beautiful cool mornings and warm afternoons have been an added bonus to the action [...]

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Key West Flats Permit and Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: Capt Mike Bartlett

With mostly exceptional weather last week and a new moon, we had some great days on the flats of Key West last week. Tarpon made an appearance in some of the channels and I found some laid up tarpon in shallow water about mid week. Permit fishing was really good, though the catching part was a little tricky. We got one on a crab, but I witnessed and heard from other guides of permit not eating live crabs. It does happen every great once in a while [...]

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Well Earned Mixed Bag

Recent inshore fishing reports from the West Central region.


Well Earned Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Mixed Bag

I worked mangroves lining the pond and came to a crab pot out in the middle. I casted past it. Just past the pot, my lure got blasted so hard the rod almost came out of my hand.

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New Port Richey Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: micklej2

New Port Richey

We had two shark hook ups, one goliath grouper and several spanish mackerels. Bob managed a limit of hog snapper and most of the spanish mackerel and a permit to boot.

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Sarasota Bay Snook and Reds

Florida Sportsman member: capt.nate
Sarasota Bay Snook

We couldn’t count the number of snook they caught, there were so many. They got two redfish that were 29 inch twins and a snook that was 27.995 inches.

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Bradenton Jacks, Snook and Reds

Florida Sportsman member: capt.nate

Bradenton Jacks

I had the Robinson clan out for a six hour trip today. They caught a good variety of fish including an 11 pound jack!

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Tampa Bay Action

Florida Sportsman: Matt822

Tampa Bay

With the arrival of spring water temps a little early, it appears the bite has woken up over the last three weeks with tons of snook on the flats and schools of redfish covering the mangrove lines. The last two weekends I was able to get them on top water baits early in the morning, then switched to green swimbaits or paddle tails.

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Slammin’ Snook

Florida Sportsman: capt.nate

Snook

The bite started slow, but after the first fish ate, it was on like Donkey Kong! That first fish happened to be a 38″ beast of a snook! They caught fish, after fish, after fish for four solid hours.

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February Inshore Review

Florida Sportsman: Matt822

February Inshore

The trout bite has been really good as well with some fish in the 24-28″ range. I’ve been getting them on zman paddle tails, bouncing the edges of the pot holes in one to five feet of water. They usually hit it on the drop, so be ready.

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Weedon Island Small Snook, Big Fight

Florida Sportsman: KingCatch

Weedon Island Small Snook

About halfway through the rising tide, the fish turned on and we nabbed a few snook. I got some on a white topwater plug and Danny got a couple to eat a DOA Cal on a 1/4 oz jig.

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Tampa Bay Sheepshead

Florida Sportsman: Rick Franco

Tampa Bay Sheepshead

Capt. Rick Franco and his wife Jamie recently enjoyed tugging on some nice Tampa Bay sheepshead. In the winter months you can find these “convict fish” amassing over hard bottom structure. Capt. Rick’s advice: Fish deeper water for the bigger fish and weed out puffers and other bait-stealers by fishing with crabs.

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Winter Fishing Tampa Bay

Florida Sportsman member: Jeremy 1

Winter Fishing Tampa

Trout have been consistent and can be caught with ease. They can be found on deeper three to seven foot grass flats with thick turtle grass bottom and potholes. I usually throw lures that resemble white bait such as a Mirrodine but I have found Mirrolure’s Lil Jon bait on a ¼ jig head bounced along the bottom will catch them consistently. A general rule of thumb is once you’ve caught one, there’s many more in the vicinity so keep throwing.

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42″ Mega Snook in the Canal

Florida Sportsman member: harrisa2006

Snook in the Canal

She put up one incredible fight. I knew this was going to be a good fish, but when she partially surfaced and I saw her tail, I could not believe me eyes. My arms began to shake, I was completely flabbergasted. I have caught big snook before, but this snook was so big, that it did not even look like a snook anymore. It looked like a living dinosaur.

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Anna Maria Island: Friends and Firsts

Florida Sportsman member: sas0061

Anna Maria Island

I set out three lines; one popping bobber with a 12″ leader and live shrimp and two freelined pilchards with 4′ leaders. After 30 minutes, the line started tearing out of one of the pilchard setups. I handed the rod to a friend who had never been inshore saltwater fishing before. She ended up landing her first trout and it was a big one!

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Anna Maria Island Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: sas0061

Anna Maria Island Fishing

We decided to hit some more oyster beds and mangroves. We freelined two pilchards out the front, one pilchard with the popping bobber out the back, and I threw a doa until it was time to check lines. About 45 minutes in, one of the freelined greenies was hit. As soon as I started to reel in, I saw the jump. It was a snook! Just after releasing it, a second fish struck the remaining freelined pilchard. In five minutes, we landed two nice snook.

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Fat Trout, Reclusive Reds

Florida Sportsman member: Matt822

Fat Trout

The big trout have really made a push on to the flats with fish average being over 20 inches. The Redfish seem to be a bit more elusive but I’ve still managed to get some ones and twos here and there. Haven’t been able to locate the “big school” everyone wants to see.

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Florida Fall Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: permit_me

Florida Fall Fishing

We fished the St. Joseph Sound/Anclote area for reds. The fish were there and we managed a few each. All nice fish, 24″ and over. We saw a couple sheepshead in about a foot of water threw to them and bam, we both got one. They were 16″ and 19″.

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Drift Fishing Tampa Bay: Skyway to Egmont

Florida Sportsman member: Soda Popinski

Drift Fishing Tampa Bay

We drifted a channel marker and my son got a 22″ gag on a pinfish that had very little life left in it. Caught it on 12lb cajun line with a 30lb mono leader, that leader was beat to death by the time we got him to the boat. Water temp was 66.4 degrees. No keepers but still fun to get out on the water, it had been a while. Love fishing the bay, you never know what you might hook.

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St. Pete Late Season Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: stpetebaitman

Late Season Tarpon

The fish have been eating live pinfish very well. The pinfish spawn is about to happen so there are massive schools of them up in the bay. This happens every year and you can find schools of thousands of pinfish on the edges of flats. The tarpon have been pretty cooperative until the tide starts to really rip.

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Battle In The Bay Win

Florida Sportsman member: SouthshoreSlayer

Battle in the bay

Due to red tide in my area I fish this time of year, I decided to run to a new area I have never fished. Well the gamble ended up paying off, as by 10 AM we had two reds at 26 7/8″ each and a 23″ trout. Our weight came out to 18.05lbs to win us first out of 60 boats. We took home a check for $2,000.

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St. Pete Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: stpetebaitman

st. pete tarpon

While looking for cobia, I came across a spot that I have never seen tarpon before. As I began to inspect the spot more, I found that tarpon were traveling in a particular zone and in a certain depth. They appeared to be using this spot as a highway.

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Ditch Trolling for Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: swordawet

I tweaked my ditch trolling technique with some new and valuable information. I sent the gear down at the early crack of 10am and by 10:15 I was tight with a nice 27″ gag. A quick selfie and into the ice bath he went.

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Skyway Channel Grouper

Florida Sportsman member: winderbill

I only caught four fish, but they were ALL keepers, 25″, 26″, 26″ and 28″. Only trolled for three hours and I was culling after an hour and a half. All were caught in the same hundred yard stretch, no shorts. I didn’t see another boat there the entire time. Troll em up, they’re out there!

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Tampa Bay Redfish

Florida Sportsman member: Matt822

I have not yet seen the redfish mixed in with the mullet yet the fish I have found in schools have been over slot size fish. If you can manage to find these fish before the rest of the people do they will be schooled up and eating every bait you throw at them.

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South Tampa Bite

Florida Sportsman member: gettinwet

We started in the backwaters focusing around mangrove points and cuts between islands as well as schools of large black mullet. After a lot of short strikes on topwater plugs we did manage to hook up a couple of nice reds.

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St. Pete Summer Bite

Florida Sportsman member: stpetebaitman

Tarpon are creatures of habit that move huge distances on a daily basis. They generally come back to the same haunts year after year, but it can at times be a bit of a struggle to find out where they are on a particular day, unless you get them “dialed in”. Getting them dialed takes a lot of time, a lot of dedication and a lot of failed attempts, but once you figure it out the feeling of accomplishment is something else.

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West Central Snookin’

Florida Sportsman member: CL604

Went fishing with our Son Capt. Mike ( Mangrove Bully ) out of Tarpon Springs. Despite the gusty winds we were able to find fish-able spots with a total of 11 snook and two reds in just two hours.

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Sarasota Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: MGD

Linda and I fished w Capt. Clark Wright 3 days last week and it was amazing. I’ve caught small tarpon before (maybe 30 pounds) but wanted to get us on some big ones. We went 4/10, 4/6 and 2/5 in the three days fishing the pass and the beach.

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Tarpon Tips

Florida Sportsman member: stpetebaitman

I wanted to take a little time to help people understand what good etiquette means, as well as show you some of the fish that we have caught so far this year. Etiquette goes a long way and helps everyone catch more fish.

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Prefrontal Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Casting with the wind down the side of a mangrove bank and I got a strike/pull-down on my mullet. I casted past the same spot again, reeling it through and nothing. I let the lure fall to the bottom near the boat and it got blasted.

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Manatee River Reds and More

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

A few minutes later a pretty copper-colored rat red inhaled my bait. I needed to size up, so I kept paralleling the shoreline. Reeling in a few minutes later and my lure got blasted, I set the hook on something solid that had some weight.

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Wintertime in Tampa Bay

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Trout have really moved in good with the last few cold fronts, and there has been some nice sized fish being caught between 18 to 22 inches. Artificial jigs have been out producing everything else over the past week, live shrimp did produce a few fish as well as sardines, but 5 “soft plastic jerkbaits darker in color rigged with a light lead head did the best.

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Tampa Bay Reds and Snook

Florida Sportsman member: Tailn_reds

I have been finding that the reds want the shrimp and the snook want the white bait. The last few times I have been out I have launched out of gandy and fished Weedon Island or south. I find that a lot of the fish I have been catching come from under the mangroves or in deeper water banks.

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Wade Slam

Florida Sportsman member: spydermonkey

We stopped at Gandy and got some shrimp in case I couldn’t find any greenies on the flat. Got to the flat about 8:30 and started off with topwaters. I was throwing a livetarget mullet and my dad was throwing a spook in mullet coloration. After about 20 minutes I hooked up with a nice redfish.

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Tampa Bay Fall Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Snook fishing has started to get real good inside of Tampa bay. The fish are starting to get concentrated in the canals, rivers, and creeks making for some of phenomenal snook fishing trips. Live sardines will be the bait of choice until they are gone for winter. Free lined baits rigged with a 1/0 hook are the rig of choice.

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South Shore Win

Florida Sportsman member: SouthShoreSlayer

We went where I was on a big school Friday but they never showed up. We moved and she got a 20 inch fish. We ran 15 miles north and I knew it was a bad call. We ran back to Fort Desoto and found them. We wrecked them with double hookups for 20 minutes then they shut back down.

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Catching in the Bay

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Redfish have been everywhere this month, and the action should only get better. Most of the Redfish I have been catching have been coming from large schools of fish that are over-slot in size. I have also been catch a few more Redfish this week mixed with the Snook and these fish have been mid to upper slot size. Live sardines have been the bait of choice, and they can’t be too big for these big bruiser reds.

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Tampa Bay Variety

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Juvenile Tarpon have really made a showing recently and have been a blast to catch on light tackle and fly rods. Look for the smaller tarpon to be in small creeks, canals, and river mouths throughout the bay area. Small poppers and weedless jerk baits have been working well during dawn and dusk hours.

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Hot Bite Before the Storm

Florida Sportsman member: Slamaholic

In that short time we landed 10 small tarpon and six snook. We worked structure with whitebait. Our chummers were getting blown up in every direction. Before we were pushed away by the thunderstorms, we dropped a lady fish on the bottom and landed a nice 20 pound goliath grouper.

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Tampa Bay Bruiser

Florida Sportsman member: SnookStack

My rod doubles over and I’m set for an 8 minute battle with a 40 inch snook on 20 pound test. Every head shake my heart dropped. I thought for sure this fish was going to own me. I played the fish with a real light drag she made multiple big runs with a few violent head shakes.

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Tampa Bay Tarpon and More

Florida Sportsman member: Capt. Jared

Inshore snook, redfish, mackerel, and snapper have been keeping the lines tight for the anglers that haven’t wanted to tangle with the silver king. Red fishing has seemed to be improving in the areas of the bay that I have been fishing and most of the fish have been over slot, cut bait has been the most effective with the heat.

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Snook on Sand

Florida Sportsman member: johnny-moe

Beach bite has been really good on these great tide days. Nice to see the return of good sized snook in numbers. Also was nice to get my son Charlie on his biggest snook around 38 to 40 inches.

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Dinner and a Show

Florida Sportsman member: SouthshoreSlayer

When the tide died we went Snapper fishing. The bite was on but the wind and tide were fighting each other and could not hold over the ledge. What I ended up doing was keeping the outboard in reverse to hold the anchor tight. It was difficult but we got it done with snapper to 19 inches.

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Surprise in the Bay

Florida Sportsman member: Royalflush

after a few minutes of finesse battle with only 20 pound braid and 30 pound mono leader, the brown bomber shows himself. But he’s not ready to be landed, got him boat side about 8 times and each time he darted back down.

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Rough Weather Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: stpetebaitman

After locating some free jumping fish on Saturday with nothing but mackerel gear on board we decided to head back out Sunday and at least be semi-prepared. Spent two hours catching bait and headed out to get a bite within three minutes.

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Upper Tampa Bay Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: BryanC

While I was taking pics of that, my rod bent over in the rod holder and I was hooked into a big snook! Unfortunately, she broke me off. Another one bit a little later, and I got her close to the boat, this one looked smaller, possibly a slot fish, but once again my 20 pound leader broke.

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Insane Snook Day

Florida Sportsman member: Snookerman311

“Yesterday was a day that will go down in my record books and one I will never forget. On saturday night I had invited a close friend of mine to fish sunday morning with the intentions of throwing artificial and trying to hide from the wind…”

Want to catch monster snook like this? Click here for how-to videos, feature stories, and more.

 


Fishing in the Wind

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

I loosen my drag cause I know she isn’t done. She gets to the boat and dives under it. I stick my rod in the water and she makes another long run for the mangroves, then a half-jump. Nice! I bring her around and baby her to the right and then left of the boat. She is on top now and I bring her right next to the boat and freaky expertly slips the net under her.

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Catching Dinner

Florida Sportsman member: freshfromthesalt

The day was cold but the bite was hot and by the time we brought up our last line we had 42 keeper sheepshead in the box, mixed in with a couple chunky key west grunts and black sea bass. Another 20 or more short sheeps were released.

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February Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Live shrimp fished under a cork has been been producing good results, but artificial’s have been working just as well. Soft plastic jerk baits in darker colors fished on the bottom have been top producers, but suspending twitch bait’s have produced some of the larger fish.

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Negative Tides, Positive Results

Florida Sportsman member: SnookStack

Moving out to the flats I was anxious to start seeing trails and single reds scattered. Soon we started spooking fish, we set our drifts up and started working a 1 1/2 foot depth with mixed grass and sand. It was on, we landed quality reds on the next few drifts.

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January in Tampa Bay

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Live shrimp has been producing good results either free-lined or fished under a cork. Soft plastic jigs have also been producing just as well as live bait. Darker colored soft plastic jerk baits fished on a lighter jig heads such as a 1/16 or 1/8 ounce.

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West Central Inshore Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Matt822

The redfish bite has been pretty good with the exception of last weeks cold front I think they are finally starting to settle in to a winter pattern. The big trout bite has really fired up the last couple weeks with fish in the 25-30 inch range holding in deep pot holes on the flats and edges of channels. I have been using all artificials and they have been producing consistently.

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Wintertime In Tampa Bay

Florida Sportsman member: Tfoucher

Bait was a little tough for us but we got it and the bite in the morning was not very good since we had slower tides and cold water to deal with. After moving around we finally got into some fish. We ended up with some nice snook, a couple of nice reds and some trout.

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South Shore Bite

Florida Sportsman member: SouthshoreSlayer

After fishing that for two hours the tide was getting right for my spots up North of Cockroach. We made 8 different stops on various mangrove edges, live chummed, and pulled fish from every stop. Most were Snook but we also got 9 Redfish, 3 Trout, and I caught a Sheepshead in a whitebait which was a first for me.

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Tampa Bay Hot Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Tfoucher

I really did not think the bite was going to be very good but I was wrong. We got 80 plus reds, snook and trout with it mostly being reds and snook with the few trout to round out our inshore slams.

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North Pinellas Inshore

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Trout fishing has finally started to pick up in the last week with the slot fish starting to school up, and the larger breeder trout starting moving into the shallows. Look for slot size fish to be in the deeper channels and creeks throughout the bay area.

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Great Way to Spend Your Birthday

Florida Sportsman member: Tfoucher

We had caught the last of the outgoing tide and the whole incoming tide. The fish were unbelievably hungry. I told Chad that we had to keep count of all the fish that we caught. I told him that I felt this could be a 100 plus fish day. Boy was I right! To be exact it was 112.

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Mayhem Inshore

Florida Sportsman member: Tfoucher

We probably ended up with between 60 to 70 fish maybe more since we were not really keeping tabs. We got snook, reds and trout with most of the fish being snook. I was the only one not to get a slam on the boat!

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Catching on the Alafia

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

I kept working the shallower docks. Skipped under one at 10:50am and got crushed. This fish had some weight and gave me a great battle. I got it in the boat and it was a solid slot red of 25 1/2 inches.

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Starting Them Young

Florida Sportsman member: jimmy77

We anchored up on the edge of a pot hole and put out pins and greenbacks under floats over the shallow flooding grass. I got a decent flounder on a pinfish and we got a few reds on greenbacks. My son got the nicest fish, a 23 inch redfish.

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Catching on the Drift

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

The water was very skinny and we kept targeting the 1 1/2 to 3 foot zone. We drifted north and Stormy caught a 20 inch snook on the Bait Buster just a few minutes later. We caught more snook on the flats than I can ever remember.

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Upper Tampa Bay Hot Bite

Florida Sportsman member: snook1998

I handed my buddy a rod with a greenback on it and he made a perfect cast right up against a submerged log, BAM he was on. The fish took a good amount of line, we got it up to the boat and it was a 26 inch snook.

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West Central Inshore

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Large tarpon have been inside the bay for a few months now and are in post-spawn transition patterns. Early morning and sundown is the best time to get shots at these large fish. Swimbaits such as the D.O.A. baitbuster are the go to lures right now.

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Tampa Bay Sight Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Shadowcast

Got a chance to fish with Willie “Jack” Jackson in hopes of getting some sight fishing in on the +0.3 low tide late in the morning. The outgoing tide and the recent amount of rain left the water quite stained coming out of the Little Manatee River but we were able to work up a small slam including Jack’s first ever redfish.

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Taming the Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: stpetebaitman

Locating the fish was the hardest part, but once we did find them they were willing to put on a show. We even had a double header Saturday and landed them both. We were in by noon both days as it seemed the bite shut down early.

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Changing Tactics, Catching Fish

Florida Sportsman member: SnookStack

I can’t seem to catch the specks, but being tempted to take my ladyfish and chunk it up was too tempting. I aborted trout fishing by 8 and the change in tactics paid off! I caught two beauties and was off the water by 10 am.

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Tampa Tarpon Action

Florida Sportsman member: CatchDog

Forum member CatchDog Put together an awesome video of some adrenaline filled Tampa tarpon. Between the big jumps and aggressive sharks, tarpon are sure to get your blood flowing. Nice Work!

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Wading Picnic Island

Florida Sportsman member: OverslotsOnly

Seeing some mullet getting spooked near a sand patch, I made a cast, twitched it twice and I was on, but it wasn’t a little trout. The drag starts singing and I’m thinking red, but then the fish breaks the surface with those big unmistakable headshakes I’m so accustomed to seeing over in my hometown of Stuart, huge snook!

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Keepers in the Bay

Florida Sportsman member: Captainbly

Only got one bite but only fished for about 30 minutes. But, it was a nice 24 inch gag. Caught on a magnum bomber gold and black trolled on a number 3 planer at about 3.1 mph going against the incoming tide.

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West Central Beach Snook

Florida Sportsman member: splitshot

Forum member splitshot shared some nice snook caught recently from the beach. Throwing top waters in the early morning has produced. Nice work!

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West Central Tarpon and More

Florida Sportsman member: stpetebaitman

Tarpon fishing has been excellent in the bay. But, they are not showing themselves very well. On the 4th we went 3 for 4 before noon. The only fish we saw were the ones we jumped, not a single fish rolled.

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Trout Fishing with a Cobia Surprise

Florida Sportsman member: spicyswamprabbit

Our first thought was that it was a shark but as the fight began we quickly realized that it was a rather large cobia. My dad quickly manned the trolling motor and the chase was on. My friend scrambled to get our gaff and readied himself incase we were able to get the fish close enough to the boat. We chased the fish for 15 minutes, and after a failed first attempt to gaff the fish, we managed to get it boat side, gaffed and in the boat.

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North Pinellas Snook Bite

Florida Sportsman member: TailingReds

Targeted linesiders around Three-Rooker and Anclote last Wednesday evening. Caught and released four snook to 35 inches, plus a bonus 23 inch trout. All fish were caught during the first part of the outgoing tide on palm sized pinfish and grunts.

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Tampa Bay Toads

Florida Sportsman member: Tailn_reds

I suddenly hooked up with a 25 and a 1/2 inch red. After we released it my fried hooks up with another monster snook we got it within 10 yards of the boat and it came off. Suddenly I hook up with a huge snook It jumped a few and was gone, finally I ended up getting a 39 inch snook.

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Snook for Everyone

Florida Sportsman member: Bruce F

Forum member Bruce F took his family out snook fishing on mother’s day. They got into them to say the least! Everyone caught nice fish! Great work.

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Anna Maria Island Sharkin’

Florida Sportsman member: Royalflush

First run was a 3 foot blacktip. 5 or 6 missed fish later , we had a big one, but turned out to be a 6 foot nurse. More missets and hook pulls, then boom the 12/0 gets nailed, hook set good! About a half hour into the hour long battle, we assume we have either a jewfish or small shark wrapped in a crab trap. Wrong , big bull, 105 inch fat boy.

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Tampa Bay Inshore

Florida Sportsman member: Tailn_reds

We showed up at our spot, water was high and getting ready to drop. The wind and rain started to pick up but we decided to fish through the weather. First cast through out a live bait not 2 minutes later I got smashed and my Friend hooked up with a 30 inch redfish. After a photo release we kept fishing, we caught multiple large jacks and lady fish.

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Disturbing the Peace, Catching Bruisers

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Reeling along slowly and as soon as the lure cleared the dock, it got blasted. Set the hook and my drag begins screaming. Rather than take me right back under the dock and break me off, the fish heads for deeper water at high speed. Rookie mistake by a big fish. The fish comes up tail-walking away from me. It is a beast!

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Skyway Kings

Florida Sportsman member: SnookStack

Early Saturday morning I headed out to the Sunshine Skyway to see if the Kings were around. At first light I got my first ever landed Kingfish. Being a flats fisherman this was quite the experience!

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Tampa Bay Slobs

Florida Sportsman member: Youngbuck

Forum member Youngbuck had a good week, busting 2 healthy Tampa Bay snook. One on a Cut bait and the other on a D.O.A. shrimp.

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Tampa Bay Snook and Reds

Florida Sportsman member: Capt.Jared

Red fishing has been excellent over the past few weeks and should remain steady for the next few months. Most of the fish we have been catching have been top slot fish, with many fish over slot. Double and triple hook ups have been pretty common on most trips and we have been averaging 12 to 20 fish on a four hour trip with many in the 28-34 inch range.

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Slammin’ Snook and More

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

This is just a quick synopsis with the highlights. We fished from around 1pm to dark. First we caught a couple of keeper trout. Around 1:30pm, my lure got crushed on a wind blown bank. Up comes a very nice snook. After a great fight with another jump or two, we got her in the boat. She measured 33 inches.

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Tampa Bay Heating Up

Florida Sportsman member: Capt. Jared

The redfish bite has been extremely good especially fishing the high water around the new and full moon. Look for the fish to be schooled up on the flats on the higher part of the tides. Live bait has been productive, but fresh dead bait never fails, cut ladyfish, pinfish, threadfin and just about any fresh dead bait will do the trick.

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Sarasota Inshore Permit and Sheepshead

Florida Sportsman member: aaron

I saw something that looked like a massive sheepie sitting under a mangrove, so I landed my fly on its head and it ended up being about 5 medium to nice sized ones. They all swarmed my fly and I hooked up after one strip. We had to head out shortly after, but I am very curious if my method would have tricked one of those permit. I did see one school of three permit cruising along the mangroves averaging about 10 pounds, but I was being a fool and didn’t get a chance to throw to them.

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Tampa Bay Trout and More

Florida Sportsman member: rKotinsky

As the day moves on, I receive another hard hit and suspect a good mid-size red fish. It pulls drag and avoids my yak like the plague. I finally wear her out and see another gator trout, this time I do not miss with the net and capture this happy moment on my GoPro.

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Southshore Shallows

Florida Sportsman member: srqmynatt

We got into some ladyfish and jacks on the outer sandbar, then we made our way in and started getting trout on the flats. After putting a few nice trout in the box for dinner, we made our way back inside and managed one 25 inch redfish along the mangroves, he ate a penny gulp shrimp.

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Macks for Dinner

Florida Sportsman member: aquaholik

This warm weather has the macks fired up pretty good if you are looking for fish for the smoker. I’ve been experimenting with various jigs made of marabou and synthetics.

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West Central Bowfishing

Florida Sportsman member: Barnakiller

Bowfishing is not something you hear about often around here, but is a ton of fun. It’s like hunting, but you get a lot of shots. At the same time, it’s like spearfishing but you don’t have to get wet. I would like to get more people interested in it around these parts. Legally, anything you can spearfish you can bowfish.

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Doormats Inshore

Florida Sportsman member: NOTyourSPOT

Forum member NOTyourSPOT found some really nice sized flounder in deep holes inshore. Now is the time to get out there and bring home a doormat or two.

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West Central Winter Wading

Florida Sportsman member: secretspot

sheepshead-docks, rock piles and bridges, also on the flats in deeper holes-use barnacles, shrimp, fiddlers or tube worms
black drum-same as above but add in cut blue crab to the bait list. the big ones are still a month or so away.
trout , reds, flounder- shrimp or cut baits will work but I prefer a super slow fished soft plastic jig or plug- Logic Lures are working well as are the Unfair Lures rip n slash. Hit the same areas for all three, deeper flats, potholes, channels, docks , and seawalls.

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West Central Flats Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Angler Systems

Fished a water depth under 30 inches all day. The majority of my fish were caught on a Sebile Innovative Fishing Stick Shad using FINS fishing Windtamer 10 pound braid, Seaguar Fluorocarbon 20 pound leader and a Shimano Stratic 3000FJ. Total fish count included Redfish up to 29 inches and Trout to 25 inches.

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Fighting the Wind, Catching the Fish

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

This fish was pretty strong and ran towards the mangroves first, but inexplicably back out into open water. She had me if she got in the roots. Came up thrashing and it was a pretty good red. Came back to and dove under the boat. Got momentarily wrapped around the motor, a couple of more runs and slipped her into the net at 3:50pm. She had absolutely choked the lure and I had to use pliers it was so deep in her mouth. She measured 25 and a half inches.

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Fighting The Wind, Catching Fish

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

This fish was pretty strong and ran towards the mangroves first, but inexplicably back out into open water. She had me if she got in the roots. Came up thrashing and it was a pretty good red. Came back to and dove under the boat. Got momentarily wrapped around the motor, a couple of more runs and slipped her into the net at 3:50pm. She had absolutely choked the lure and I had to use pliers it was so deep in her mouth. She measured 25 and a half inches.

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Fort Desoto Fun With The Whole Family

Florida Sportsman member: BryanC

Then Ron hooked into something that pulled quite a bit of drag. We had seen a few rays swimming around the boat and I figured he had hooked into one of them. Turned out to be a permit! That was pretty cool to see, and I thought we were kind of lucky to land it with 10 pound mono & no leader. A couple minutes later his line goes off again, and it’s another permit! After that everyone started to copy what he was doing and we ended up catching a total of 5 permit over the span of 45 minutes.

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Miguel Bay Via Kayak

Florida Sportsman member: rkotinsky

I fished my usual spots and began catching a lot of small trout and jacks but no slot fish. I moved on and followed my usual recipe for success, hit the ladyfish waypoint for cut bait and yak on over to the redfish honey hole. Not long after tossing out the cut ladyfish I hookup with a nice red.

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Miguel Bay Via Kayak

Florida Sportsman member: rkotinsky

I fished my usual spots and began catching a lot of small trout and jacks but no slot fish. I moved on and followed my usual recipe for success, hit the ladyfish waypoint for cut bait and yak on over to the redfish honey hole. Not long after tossing out the cut ladyfish I hookup with a nice red.

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South Shore Flats Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Cast out into about a foot of water with the electric chicken. Reeling in pretty quickly and my lure got destroyed. Set the hook and the fish came up and tried to shake it. Thought for sure it was a trout, but then I felt the power. It was a nice red that put up a great fight. Finally got her in the boat and she measured 25 1/2 inches.

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Shallow Water Reds

Florida Sportsman member: jbibler

These fish were pretty fired up, but you had to be super stealthy in order to get close enough for a cast.
With any clink, clunk, step up or down on the boat and they would push away outside of casting range.
If you could get a cast far enough outside of them they would eat, but if you threw into the middle they were off to the races. Lots of patients was the key and we were rewarded with several fish.

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Terra Ceia Slam

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

We worked it a bit longer, but had no more luck there. We decided to run up to Miguel Bay. Lots of bird activity and baitfish near the mouth. Still working topwater and I hooked a 15 inch trout on the spook at 8:45am. We went inside, but tide was very low and had no luck. Back out to the mouth and we began to drift south along the shoreline. A small 12 1/2 inch trout for me at 9:45am. Pretty good sand and grass mix out there and the water was 2-3 feet deep. About this time Phi hooked into what appeared to be a good red on a topwater lure, but she got off. Another trout just over 15 inches for me at 9:53am. Five minutes later a trout just over 13 inch for me. Caught a trout just over 13 inch on the 3 inch shadflash at 10:25am

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South Shore Angling

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Launched out of CRB today at 7:45am. The wind was blowing at least 15mph out of the west. Plans were to go south towards Port Manatee and try my luck. Got down near Piney Point. The wind and floating grass were brutal. Went inside for a bit and picked up at snook just shy of 17 inches on the spook jr in bone at 8:37am. Came back out and went south.

Was struggling with the grass almost every cast. Was just about to go and managed to catch a 20 3/4-inch red on the 3-inch mullet in rootbeer at 9:34am. Worked south a bit longer, but no more strikes. It was so bad I contemplated going across the road and putting in the river to get a break from the wind and grass. Decided to keep trying. Went up in Big Pass. Water was really low now. Picked up a 14-inch trout on the spook at 11:49pm. Clouds rolled in and it began to rain. Picked up an 18-inch snook on the spook on a point inside Big Pass at 12:42pm.

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Upper Tampa Bay Reds and Snook

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Launched with Phil in UTB at 6:45am today. We headed over to a nearby oyster bar and Phil immediately hooked and landed an 18-inch red on the Spook Jr. in bone. No more strikes in this area so we went down to a nearby point. Phil’s spook got destroyed at 8am. After a tremendous fight I slipped an over slot red of 27 3/4 inches into the net.

We moved around the point into this shallow bay. It was alive with activity. Mullet were jumping everywhere and lots of bait fish were moving. Six minutes later Phil caught a small jack on the spook. I finally got on the board at 8:20am with a 20 1/2″ red on a skitterwalk that I sanded and re-painted gold. Phil got a 20 1/2-inch red on the spook just 3 minutes later. I picked up a 19-inch red at 9:05 am on the gold sw. At 9:26am I caught a 19 1/2-inch red on the sw.

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Spawning Reds

Florida Sportsman member: Tarpontine

Met up with a couple of buddies I hadn’t fished with in a while and decided to pick on some different fish. My buddy hooked a big trout on his first cast, went around 25 inches, then we worked our way around some flats. After getting some short trout and some 20-21 inch reds, we eased into an area I normally hit the big reds. They were home…but being picky! There was a decent size school, probably over 40-50 overslot or very upper slot, but just wouldn’t eat top water or jigs. I told my buddy if we switched it up to some bait we would get them.

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Paddling For Tarpon

Florida Sportsman member: abm5926

Fished off the beach in my kayak today. The day started off pretty bad with really high seas, wind, and catfish on every drop with my sabiki. I managed to get a few greenbacks but I wasn’t getting anything on them and I went through like 4 sabikis because the catfish would get all tangled in them. Finally I got a good sized grunt and put it under a cork. A few minutes later, I see a tarpon airborne with my bait. Took me about 40 min to pull the fish in and it was a relatively small one – probably around 80 to 100 pounds? I’m not too sure about the weight but it was between 5 and 6 feet long. It went around my anchor line and my sabiki during the fight, I have no idea how I got untangled and landed it. Awesome fight and released safely.The best part was I got the whole thing on video…

Here’s the video and as a warning, I think there is a curse word or two


Manatee River Snook

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

We hit the south side of the 75 bridge first. I lost a small snook on 4 inch shadflash. There were tarpon rolling under the bridge, but couldn’t connect. Jeff hooked and landed a small snook. We went further up river and found a shade line in a little bay on the north side of the river. Jeff had a couple of good pops on the big spook in bone, but didn’t hook up. I lost a small snook on the spook jr.

We worked a long mangrove line near Redfish Point but had no luck

Went to my north side docks that have produced in the past. First cast under the last dock and I caught a small snook on the 4″ sf. We kept working docks and Jeff landed a small snook also on a paddle tail. Proceeded on down and we were probing under a dock thoroughly. Nothing. Made one more cast to the T of the dock and it got crushed. Set the hook on a good fish that went ballistic. She went out and then back for the dock. Kept her away and she made a great jump. Circled the boat and Jeff got her in the net. She measured 28.5 inches.

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Anclote Reds

Florida Sportsman member: TailingReds

Pretty good day on the water fishing the hill tide at Anclote. We caught two redfish, 23.5 inches and 32 inches. My buddy Mike caught the bigger fish on cut ladyfish and I caught the slot fish on a live pilchard. FYI, the small black tips are thick, so you have to sift through them to get the reds and snook.

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Little Cockroach Bay Action

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Launched out of Domino on the LMR today around 11:15am. Headed to the flat off LCRB. Still nothing happening there so I went back into LCRB. Fished back in there for the next 5+ hours. Worked mangrove islands, potholes and oyster bars. I did pretty well. All fish were caught on the 3 inch mullet in shadflash or the spook jr. in bone[...]

Finally got out of LCRB and went to the “guide” bank for some snook. Too windy and water was low. Went around the corner towards the back entrance to LCRB. Paralleling the mangroves with the spook in maybe 2-3′ of water. Getting near the entrance and my spook got crushed. The fish took off towards the mangroves and then came right back out. This fish had some power and was really putting me to the test. It was a good snook. She went under the boat and back out deep. After a great fight, I finally slipped her in the net at 6:50pm. She measured 30 1/4 inches and was extremely fat and healthy.

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Overcast Reds and Snook

Florida Sportsman member: abm5926

Yesterday, I went out to one of my trout/redfish spots and started throwing a spook jr since it was so cloudy. I caught several lower slot reds and some trout between 18 – 22 inches. It was low tide and when it started coming in, I was getting huge blow ups on topwater, seeing redfish starting to tail, and then some idiot in a inflatable boat ran his outboard right through the shallow flat I was fishing. I was pissed but I sucked it up and went to a steep drop off and started throwing 1/16th ounce jighead with a zman 5 inch shad tail. I twitched once and got slammed by something big. I was using a med/light rod and 3000 reel with 10 pound braid and 20 pound leader and almost went to the backing. After a nice fight, I pulled in this 36″ snook.

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Steady Snookin’

Florida Sportsman member: captainrandy

Todays charter landed two 39 inch snook and one 37 inch snook and lost another along the side of the boat. We have been catching them on the incoming tide along deep depressions and on points with rocks using white bait 4-6 inches in size. They have been feeding about an hour after the tide gets moving up to about 2 hours before high tide then they are cruising the mangroves and seem to settle in to looking at the baits. The trout have been around as well but they are in the lower limit of the slot with an occassional upper slot one thrown in. Get out and bend a rod as the cobia, mackerel are around to give you a great day on the water.

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St. Pete Trout and Reds

Florida Sportsman member: Icatcher22

Planned on taking the kayaks out to a protected flat in St.Pete to hide from the wind. The overcast made it a perfect opportunity for a top-water day. RawDaws (Brian) and myself both started off with skitterwalks. We started out hitting some average/smaller trout and then I finally got a big blow up. After a nice fight landed my personal best top-water trout that measured right at 27″.

Went on to work around the mangroves – had a couple followers that pushed some very large wakes but all hit and misses…I believe they were reds but for some reason, they were having trouble connecting with the top-water…tried slowing it down, stopping , changing retrieve but no luck w red on top-water.

Got back to a nice cove and switched to a 1/16thoz jighead w/ a white zmann jerk shad. Second cast and I connected with a pretty overslot red. It put up a great fight with a couple impressive runs. Ended up right around 31″

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Desoto Action

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Inspired by Cody’s recent beatdown that he put on the redfish over at Desoto, I decided to see if I could catch a few reds too. Fifty-three miles, $4.50 in tolls, $6 for ramp fee and an 1/8 of a tank of gas later, I made it to the launch. I put in at 12:30pm and headed over to Sawyer Key. I trolled over a pothole and at least 20 trout scattered. What I ended up doing during the day was circling Sawyer Key twice with a trek just north of there also. I mostly fished 1-5 feet in depth and focused on sandy areas with a decent grass mix whenever possible. I did work docks close by but had no luck on them. Water temp was 69-74 degrees. The weather was great and mullet were everywhere. This place was alive with activity[...]

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Going for the Trifecta

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Launched out of Wildcat Park today around 12:30pm. Water temp was 67-69 degrees and the wind was howling. Headed down to the big dock on the southside. Skipped under it with the 4 inch RT Mullet in smoke/gold halo. Got a strike on the first cast. It was a 14 1/4 inch rat red caught at 12:38pm. Went to the next dock but no strikes.

Down to the 75 bridge. Worked the pilings on the north side but no luck. Over to the south side. Worked one side and no strikes. Over to the other and threw out the same lure to parallel the pilings. Near the end of the cast and got a nice strike. Set the hook and a good snook broke the surface. Got her away from the pilings and she put up a great fight. Got her in the boat at 1:15pm. She measured 25 1/4 inches. Thought about taking a pic but too much of a hassle with the wind. It was brutal.

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Braden River Trout & Reds

Florida Sportsman member: Alex from GA

Didn’t get a bite until 1:15 when my partner caught a small redfish. Then I caught 5 trout from 12 to 16 inches in the next 45 minutes. In the next 3 hours I caught a 22, 23 and 28.5 inch redfish.

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Anclote Trout & Reds

Florida Sportsman member: Juicebucket

We drowned a handfull of already dead cut pins for about 10 minutess before the first rod went down. I was suprised to see 20 inch class Trout on the end instead of a Red. I’ve caught em on cut bait before I just wasn’t expecting it today. Suddenly it became a day of Trout fishing. Every few minutes a bait would get picked up and trout after trout came aboard. Decided it was time to get the girlfriend involved and had her grab the next rod to go down. It did and she did. A couple minutes later she had her first fish. It was a rather healthy 23″ Momma Gator; not a bad way to get into fishing I’d say[...]

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Tampa Bay Sheepshead

Florida Sportsman member: mojotarpon

Despite a little wind we had to get out and fish and break in the new boat. We loaded up on some shrimp and hit some spots for sheepshead. This time of year I love to target sheepshead and what a great battle they are on light tackle. Make sure you get plenty of shrimp, today two of us went through 15 dozen shrimp and ran out with fish eating. We started out on the incoming tide and work a line of docks. I like to get in the tower and just crews the docks spotting the fish and then just head back at the beging and target the docks with fish. We had pretty good luck and had a dozen nice fish in about a hour.

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Gator Trout & A Surprise Guest

Florida Sportsman member: secretspot

Jeremy came down for a day of fishing for some gators and maybe reds. After a very late start, we arrive to have the area all to ourselves- a rarity. I hook up with something that was fighting unlike anything I’ve ever hooked before. I then see why. It’s no fish but a little sea turtle. A few quick pics and a unhook and back he goes. We proceeded to tear into trout between 21-25 inches for about 2 hours. I lost a fish that might have been the biggest trout I’ve ever had. It was a monster.

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Killer Day on the South Shore

Florida Sportsman member: SouthshoreSlayer

With the warm weather we might have been able to get bait somewhere closer but I would rather head to the Skyway where I know I can get it 100%. After anchoring and getting set up just a couple tosses of the net and my 30 Gal well was full. We decided to hit Piney Point on the way back up to Cockroach. We fished there for about 30 minutes but there was no signs of bait, fish, mullet, or any life at all so we decided to head more North and hit the Cockroach flats. The tide was – 0.6 so there was hardly any water on the flats. Josh didn’t want to push his boat so he waded the outside bar while I pushed my boat through the real skinny parts and over the bar. I was looking for potholes and wakes. I saw some movement about 100 yards away and quietly headed that way. When I got within casting distance I anchored and threw out 2 bats of chummers. The were getting chased and I knew it was game on. I had a bait out for about 30 seconds and my drag starts to scream[...]”

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Full Day of Reds & Snook

Florida Sportsman member: second splash

First stop was a small cut near the mouth I did pretty well on last week and got set up. Cranked a couple baits of chummers and they were getting popped. First bait in the water gets hit within 15 seconds, a snook around the 18 inch range. As I release him Dave hooks up on an 18 inch red. Within 2 minutes of fishing we are 2/3 the way of a boat slam. All the fish caught today were in the 16-24 inch range. I think we need some cold weather to push more of the bigger ones back in the river. We caught 6 or so fish (reds and snook) at the first spot and decided to push up river. We anchored up on the second spot and started chumming. I get a snook on the first bait[...]”

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Got Snook?

Florida Sportsman member: Tarpontine

“Got on the water around 7 launching out of Gandy with a buddy. Loaded up pretty good on bait- some fat snook size whitebait, tons of little threads, and a couple dozen pins. Made a stop just north of the Howard Frankland and got a 23″ snook, a couple keeper size trout, and a rat red.

Looking for some more consistent action we moved to UTB, weaved our way through a maze of boats fishing the same area as we scouted for fish. Throwing some chummers as we went, we pulled on to an area where I started to see some fish. Next 2 hours were pretty steady- with the first 30-45 mins being non stop. Between the two of us we got 4 snook 30″ or better, a bunch in the low 20′s, and 10 or so rat reds. [...]”

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Gusty Winds, Redfish hitting

Florida Sportsman member: Lilcthefishslayer

“Mike busted up like 4 fat fish all within 20 mins or so. I caught a few myself with one being a real stud that came home for some blackened redfish. All fish were beautiful slot fish 24-26 except Mike getting one at 27 1/2. With a few 24′s in the mix as well. Only caught 1 rat which was nice! Plus all fish are fighting at least twice as hard now that the water temp has dropped. I love cold weather redfish! [...]”

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No Sunshine Slam

Florida Sportsman member: Lilcthefishslayer

Took Mike out on the skiff today hoping to get on some afternoon reds during the low tide. Well the sun wasn’t cooperating so no sight fishing. We picked up a few reds right off the bat, then we made a big move. At the next spot it was kinda slow, spotted a huge black drum just roaming around the flats but he wasn’t eating. Caught a few trout and snook along with a little red and made another move across the bay [...]

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Fort Desoto Breeder Reds

Florida Sportsman member: secretspot

Being that I am known as a gator trout specialist, I’d like to throw some reds up for your viewing pleasure. Two came on the spook Jr. Clown, pinfish color, and one on the DOA paddle tail, bream color. Leader was 20 pound flour with 10 pound braid main line. It was Capt. Chris Hanna, his girlfriend Christina, and myself [...]

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John’s Pass Slam

Florida Sportsman member: jewfish7

The weather looked ok for Thursday so I planned on throwing some artificials under the John’s Pass bridge and then hit a near shore reef to look for some snaps. The water was really dirty so the bridge didnt look so promising but I tried anyhow.Second cast using a 5-inch swimbait a tarpon eats it and makes some decent runs then a couple jumps and then he throws the hook next to the boat [...]

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Pass-A-Grille Beach Linesiders

Florida Sportsman member: watsondan1515

From the end of July up until last week I had good action (didn’t get skunked) each time I waded out from the beach at Pass-A-Grille. Go early, first light til about 10:30 a.m., or in the evening 7:30 p.m through sunset. Netted some greenies then chummed the outer sandbar in about waist deep water and hold on tight; trout, reds, snook, mackerel, blacktips, and of course the ladyfish [...]

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Flats Suprise

Florida Sportsman member: KeepmBent

We left out of Simmons Park looking to fish some reefs for grouper and snapper. We loaded up on threadfins that we used for cut bait and found a few mangos and macks, and a LOT of sharks. The gags did not want to play. We tried moving to some nearby wrecks but there were already boats anchored on them [...]

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Cockroach Bay Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: flatsjunkie88

Got a call from a friend that wanted to give inshore fishing a shot. I told him I had a full boat but if he wanted to bring his we could hit the flats together. We loaded up with shrimp at Southshore Bait and Tackle. The shrimp were pitifully small ( 2″ was a big one ). We launched at CRB at 5:15 A.M. [...]

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Topwater Excitement

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Launched out of CRB at 6:15 a.m. yesterday with Dave (stormy). I had not done much fishing south of CRB so that was the plan. The noseeums are vicious at the ramp in the AM and then the mosquitos joined in at dark so have your repellent handy. We went out to the farthest mangrove point on the left and headed south along the shoreline. I started with the Spook Jr. in bone of course and Dave with the DOA chugger. It was overcast/cloudy and the sun only came out for a bit during the entire day. Conditions were ideal for a topwater bite [...]

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On the Road Again

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Decided to head back down to the Peace River yesterday with Dave (stormy). Launched out of Harbour Heights ramp at 6:20 a.m. I started off with the Spook Jr. in bone and Dave was throwing a DOA with a chugger head attached. We proceed over to the grassy points near the ramp, but no luck. Down to the little mangrove island at the mouth of Whidden Bay. Gave Dave first shot at the point of this island and he put it right on the money [...]

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St. Petersburg Reds

Florida Sportsman member: GEO

The redfish action continues to be strong with slot to oversized fish being caught around the Tampa Bay area. They are being caught on everything from top water lures, jigs, spoons, live bait and cut bait. If you can get upwind from them and drift in and set up this will leave them comfortable and willing to feed. With the wind at your back you will be able to make longer casts so that you can stay further away from the fish and catch more of them [...]

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Bishop’s Harbor- Tampa Bay Gem

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Launched out of Bishop’s Harbor with Dave (stormy) at 6:45am on Saturday. I had been there before with Hondo and Secret Spot and thought I would give it a try with Dave. The water temp was right at 80 degrees. The tide was incoming for a few hours, then kind of flat with a strong outgoing later. We eased out towards the mouth and the mullet were everywhere. We came up on a point with mullet jumping all around it. On my second cast with the Spook Jr in bone, my lure got crushed [...]

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Snook on Fire

Florida Sportsman member: flatsjunkie88

My buddy josh and I launched at Cockroach Bay at 5:15 A.M. We didn’t want to mess around looking for bait and it was still dark so we decided to run to the Skyway. We loaded both wells with whitebait and took off. We eased off the throttle as we hit the no wake zone as the sun was coming up. We anchor up along the mangroves and sling out some chummers [...]

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Peace River Catchin’

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assasin

Launched at Harbour Heights boat ramp at 6:30am yesterday with Dave (stormy). We were going to target boat docks again to see if we could duplicate our efforts from our last trip there. The fog was as thick as pea soup on the river. We went over to work the grassy area and island adjacent to the ramp. The water temp was 80 degrees and the tide was outgoing.

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Night Time is the Right Time

Florida Sportsman member: Trophy-Trips

Few pics from the other night. Basically how the last month has been. Snook bite has been solid day or night, and talk about quality fish this year. Bull reds hit or miss, tide and moon dependant. Few studs the other night but wasnt an all out blitz. As far as snook we still have a few good groups inside, but most have made their way out to the beaches and are chewing rather well on the right tides. Grunts, pins, cut lady, greenies and a few select other baits have been hard to beat. Should only get better over the next month.

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Peace River Dockin’

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Dave (Stormy) was going through snook withdrawal so I thought I might be able to put him on some snook if we took a bit of a drive. We headed down to the Peace River to work some docks. We launched at Harbour Heights boat ramp around 7am. The water temp was about 80 degrees with a high of 85 in areas. It was to be a slow incoming tide all day. We worked the mouth of Whidden Bay and the nearby island with no luck. We headed down river to a cut into the Shell Creek area [...]

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Beach Fishing Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: PONCE

Spent a week down near IRB for my daughters wedding and a little RR with some beach fishing to boot. Kinda’ slow on the beach, only saw a handful of snook and a little bait was cruising around. We ended up fishing some causeways, inlets and beaches. Caught sharks, ladyfish, trout, snook and jacks as well as the usual beach-time residents. Thanks to the guys at DogFish for telling me where the trout and snook were hiding.

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Shallow Water Slam

Florida Sportsman member: CodyS

After a long week of testing at school all I wanted to do was get outside and on the water. Came home around 2:30pm, called up a fishing buddy, and were off. It was the end of the outgoing tide and middle of the afternoon…. not too great for fishing but we have a spot for that type of situation. Nearly dry flat with a sandbar and drop-off near a main channel [...]

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Windy Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: mojotarpon

Yesterday me and my dad hit the bay early, and the wind was blowing hard out of the North. Water temp around Gandy was a little above 74, and we had the 2 tide day with a tide slowly coming in all day. I had 4 blue crabs so we hit the Gandy Bridge first thing. It was pretty dang rough under that bridge with the wind and the smoke coming from up North made it more of a crazy morning. My dad made the first cast and was hooked up within seconds and the fight was on. After a a nice fight the big Black Drum was in the boat [...]

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Hooked into some Reds

Florida Sportsman member: Frogman

Hit the kings about 5 to 7 miles off, early in the morning got hits on blue runners and greenies. A lot of Spanish Mackerel floated one out for bait on a balloon but no takers. Wind picked up and then headed in back to the flats to hook into some reds. Caught some great size reds. Overall great day.

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Big Drum in the Bay

Florida Sportsman member: CodyS

Hit the bay early today around 6:30 a.m. and I was on my way to my first spot. Paddled out to a mudflat near some spoil islands and started throwing a topwater, first cast I get a huge blowup but whatever it was missed. After that all I was doing was atrracting a bunch of pesky ladyfish…those things seem to be everywhere. I moved out more to a grass bed in some deep water and started to drift, again the ladyfish are bashing my lure every cast but when it did make it to the bottom I hooked up with a nice trout, nothing big just 15-16 inch fish [...]

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Inshore Slayin’

Florida Sportsman member: inshoreslayer

My buddy and I hit the skyway early to load up on bait this am. Bait was everywhere, and there were tarpon under just about every light lurking around. First we waded docks in the river and scored a few trout 18-24 and I got a flounder around 15 ish. We picked a few snooklets up then we relocated to Palma Sola where we each scored a decent redfish. I also picked up my personal best trout that went 29 inches [...]

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March Double Grand Slam

Florida Sportsman member: mojotarpon

Today was another amazing day on Tampa Bay. Bait is really thick now, just about all the flats I checked today are loaded. After loading up on White Bait my son and I hit a couple spots just south of Gandy and we had a awesome bite. The Trout bite was sick, all fish were were just fat pigs in the 18″ to a nice 23″ Gator that my son “HRM” caught. We both hit a couple nice reds and we just need a couple snook for the slam [...]

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Peace River Trip

Florida Sportsman member: Bassin Assassin

Got up early Friday morning to drive to the Peace River. Got to the Harbour Heights Boat Ramp around 7am, which was just over 90 miles from the house. This ramp was very easy to find and within a couple of miles of I-75. Great ramp for small to mid-size boats. Normally you pay per hour for parking there at $.75 per hour. The machine wasn’t working and had a plastic bag around it so didn’t have to pay. Sweet! [...]

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Simply, Snook and Reds

Florida Sportsman member: mojotarpon

Today we went out for a few hours. Bait is so thick and easy right now, I love White Bait! We nailed some nice over slot Reds pushing the 29″ mark, and a couple Snook ate. Not bad for a afternoon trip [...]

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Snook are Chewing

Florida Sportsman member: mojotarpon

Now that bait is showing up we hit a couple spots for snook and nailed a couple nice fish on Tampa Bay. Thats my grandad , my dad, and my son. I nailed a nice fat pig and she put up a great fight. It was great having 4 generations on the boat. I love white bait!

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Still Chasing Sheep

Florida Sportsman member: Inshoreslayer

I went out and found the oldest sailboat I could find this morning covered in barnacles, tossed some crabs at em and they were hungry. Didnt get weights on em but yeilded some nice fillets. Once again free lined oyster crabs did the trick.[...]

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Plenty of Tampa Bay Trout

Florida Sportsman member: onthemarkcharters

Somebody pinch me! My calendar says its mid winter but it feels more like spring! Temperatures in the low 80’s with barely any wind is making for true Tampa Bay Chamber of Commerce weather. With afternoon water temperatures at 67 degrees on lower Tampa Bay the flats continue alive with action. My clients today Garry aka Larry and his wife Rosalyn from Alabama were treated to some amazing sights [...]

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East Central Florida Weekend Fishing 4Cast


Tomoka Basin to Sebastian Inlet

Includes Daytona Beach, Titusville, Cape Canaveral, Cocoa and Melbourne

April 21-23

PONCE INLET

OFFSHORE

Captain Jay at the Fishin’ Store in New Smyrna reports dolphin and sailfish striking trolled ballyhoo starting at about the 160 to 180-foot mark this week. Some anglers have been finding fish as far offshore as 500-feet of water. Pink and blue or pink and white skirts have been producing some of the better catches for anglers that have been able to make it out to the trolling grounds. Bottom fishing for mangrove snapper, triggerfish and red eyes (vermilion snapper) is good in the 90 to 140 foot depths. Cut baits like grunt plugs, sardines, or cut squid have been working best. Closer to shore angles are finding excellent numbers of shark in the 15 to 45-foot depths while using cut baits.

INSHORE

The redfish and trout have slowed a bit with the full moon passing a few days ago and the persistent east winds we’ve had this week. Anglers should see a turn around in the action soon, but this weekend is probably going to be the transition in the bite from slow to better. Live shrimp seems to be the best live bait to use at this time. jigs, top water plugs, and soft plastic jerk baits are also working when the fish are feeding aggressively.

PORT CANAVERAL

OFFSHORE

Dolphin were showing up near rips and temperature breaks in the 180 to 240-foot depths earlier this week. Hopefully there will be another decent edge or other feature for anglers to run to this weekend. Skirted ballyhoo and mullet have been working well on these fish. Anglers can also use cut baits or live baits around weed lines to draw fish to their boats. Bottom fishing has been fair for amberjack, mangrove snapper, and triggerfish on reefs and wrecks in the 120 to 240-foot depths. Closer to shore a variety of shark have been very easy to catch on most days. Cut or live baits fished in the 15 to 45 foot depths is the best way to get them to strike.

INSHORE

Snook action near the jetties or under wharfs and piers inside the port remains good even with the heavy east winds we have had over the last two weeks.

SEBASTIAN INLET

OFFSHORE

Scattered sailfish and fair numbers of dolphin are being reported this week. It has been rough for all who went out in search of them. Look for edges in the 140 to 240-foot depths to hold both of these species at this time. A mixed bag of snappers, trigerfish, and small amberjack can be found on the structures in 100 to 180-feet. Slow trolling with live pilchard or trolling frozen ballyhoo at 3 to 5 knots has been the best two methods to find them.

INSHORE

Snook, redfish, bluefish and jack are striking live greenies and pilchards at the inlet this week. Both tide phases have been good but the incoming has been a little better because it is happening in the afternoon time frame when the moon is in a good position to create a bite. Snook are also possible around docks and spoil islands between Vero and Grant. Jack crevalle and ladyfish can be found roaming the open basins just north and south of the inlet. Here they are feeding on mullet or glass minnows on most day as well.

Captain Jim Ross / www.FinelineFishingCharters.com / (321) 636-3728 / captjimross@cfl.rr.com

Florida Panhandle Weekend Fishing 4Cast


Perdido Key to Cape San Blas
Includes Pensacola, Gulf Breeze, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, Panama City and Port St. Joe


April 21-23

Inshore

The Panhandle really shines this time of year and with summer just around the corner there is excitement in the water. The inshore bite has been as good as it can be. On the beaches and piers pompano, whiting, and spanish will be the best bets. Near the passes, buoys, and near shore wrecks kings and spanish will be chasing the early schools of bait. Along the inter-coastal and the marsh areas near the rivers red-fish and trout will really key in on live shrimp and slow rolling spoons.

The best bet for red-fish will be the docks in 6-10ft of water. Live shrimp on a jig head will be hard for any red-fish to resist. The best bet will be using a trolling motor, push pole, or anchor to get relatively close and make cast under the dock and into the shadows. Slow bumping it on the bottom back to the boat. A few cast and you should know if there are any reds around. Its worth a few cast around the outskirts for trout and flounder too.

The beaches have to be my personal favorite this time of year. Crystal clear water, light winds, sunny skies and biting fish. Who cant love that? The best bet will be fishing set rigs with fresh dead shrimp or live sand-fleas. Most of the time the bites will come from around the drop offs along the outer sandbar, but sometimes the fish will run just off the beach and fishing just outside the shore break area may be worth a try. Having multiple rods will allow you to fish a variety of spots and baits. Keep a close eye on your rods. Lots of nice gear gets pulled into the ocean this time of year from angry fish.

If you get a chance to make it out of the pass the spanish mackerel bite along the bars near the passes and near beaches has been very good. Lots of smaller spanish, but some bigger ones are mixed in. The king bite has been hit and miss and will get more consistent as we get closer to the summer. Live bait on light leaders seems to be working best, but some fish are being caught on planner boards and duster rigs.

Offshore

The offshore bite has been good and if you get a chance now is as good as any to go wet a line. The regulations are constantly changing and with the recent FWC meeting there will be more changes in the very near future. Be sure to check myfwc.com for all the current State regs and a link to the federal gulf regulations page. The best bets will be king mackerel around the wrecks in state waters, vermillion snapper and scamp in federal waters, and tunas and wahoo at the rigs.

This may be the last weekend to catch amber-jack in state waters. The key to successful jack fishing is having plenty of quality live bait. Look for the larger schools of jacks to hold around the taller wrecks and reefs. Watch the bottom machine while approaching for fish holding mid water and up. Spring time amber-jack fishing can be epic and having a stout rod and reel combo will give you the upper hand at keeping the fish out of the wreck. King mackerel will be cruising the same wrecks and fishing a flat line is always a good idea.

In Federal waters the best bet will be scamp grouper and vermillion snapper. Look for the fish to be holding around wrecks and reefs from 100-350ft. Live bait for scamp and cut squid for vermillion snapper. Be sure to match your hooks to the bait size and keep baits close to the bottom. Some decent water has been moving through and you never know when the day making pelagic will show. Having a spinning rod handy with a live bait will increase odds.

Blue water has been moving through in patches but the best bet is still probably heading SW to the rigs in search of tunas and wahoo. Live bait is my favorite for tuna and trolling diving lures will usually work if there are wahoo around. Keep an eye on the weather it looks like a storm will be moving through sometime Sunday. Tight lines and calm seas!


www.Hellerhighwatercharters.com {850-529-8655} hhwcharters@gmail.com

Fin-tastic Fishing Sebastian Dolphin

Recent offshore fishing reports from the East Central region.


Fin-tastic Fishing Sebastian Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: Filets

Fishing Sebastian Dolphin

We ended up boating about one fish every 45 minutes, with them getting progressively bigger throughout the day. Every dolphin hit naked hoos on the riggers.

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Mahi Hunt Success

Florida Sportsman member: CAPTMOE

Mahi Hunt

There was a nice weedline in 175ft and the water was around 74 degrees. Minimal flyers, but there were lots of other bait they were crushing. They hit everything, but the Bart’s lures lit them up. Big lure of the day was a purple and black island lure on a planer.

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Port Canaveral Wahoo

Florida Sportsman member: tryacc

Port Canaveral Wahoo

About 220′ we see some signs of life and drop the spread heading east. About 230′ we have a strong take down and long run ensues.

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Ponce Inlet Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: dudemanbubba

Ponce Inlet Dolphin

We came up on the edge which formed a nice thick weedline in 350 feet. The water temperature jumped to 78 degrees and we started working the line along with about a half dozen other boats. Nothing huge, but managed three not-quite-gaffers and two decent dolphin.

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Port Canaveral Trolling and Bottom Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Wavewalker

Port Canaveral Trolling

We left early and picked up two mahi right away in about 130′. Later we got a few bonitos and a shark on the troll, that was a first for me.

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Ponce Inlet Trolling and Bottom Fishing

Florida Sportsman member: Mako224

Ponce Inlet Trolling

We headed back to the ledge we started at and wanted to work some bottom. This paid off. Lots of vermillion, stud mangos, triggers, porgies and jacks.

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Port Canaveral Schooling Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: Docked Wages

Port Canaveral Schooling Snapper

We took the Ribcraft offshore Friday afternoon for its first bottom fishing trip. We got to bend the rod all afternoon, primarily with one species. Water was clean and seas where calm.

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Port Canaveral Mahi

Florida Sportsman member: tonytali

Port Canaveral Mahi

My wife and I got a late start, but headed out of Bluepoints at about ten and headed out to the stream. We dropped lines in at about 180′ and trolled out to the edge which was at about 360′. She picked up this ten lb mahi right at the line.

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Port Canaveral Offshore Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: tonytali

Port Canaveral Offshore

The weather was perfect with nice temperatures, light winds and flat seas all day. We left Bluepoints at 7:30 and went to the edge of the gulfstream about 40 miles out at 350 ft. We picked up a 10 lb Mahi at about 320 ft and another pushing 20 lbs at about 145 ft. Worked into Pelican Flats and picked up four King Mackerel and a Bonito.

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Rough Port Canaveral Mahi Trolling

Florida Sportsman member: tonytali

Port Canaveral Mahi Trolling

There was a strong north breeze so seas were a little choppy. We put the spread out at Pelican and headed south, with no strikes for about an hour so we turned east. Got a strike at about 170′ but came off so kept heading east. Went out to about 225′ and turned around picked up this nice dolphin at about 180′.

Click here for full forum report.
 


Trolling Port Canaveral Mahi

Florida Sportsman member: tonytali

trolling port canaveral mahi

Headed out of Bluepoints Marina about 8:30 and with flat seas, ran 30 knots out to 220′. Trolled out to 700′. Ran back to 230′ and put back in headed west. Had a triple knock down at about 220′ and got two of three, but it was slow the rest of the day.

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Ponce Inlet Offshore Bite

Florida Sportsman member: Fishesman

After a quick stop for bait we headed offshore and spent the day bottom fishing and trolling. My main goal was to catch a good sized red snapper and that I did! Over on the west coast I catch plenty of trophy gags, but big red snapper are usually further out than I typically venture.

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Sebastian Phins

Florida Sportsman member: No_Cool_Name

Hooked two running the together at 124 feet. We hooked the cow and had Rodney reel her in slowly so I could get lines hoping for a tagalong. Once the fish was next to the boat saw the bull and pitched a ballyhoo on the spinning rod.

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Ponce Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: chompchomp

We found a decent rip in 450′ with decent weed and ended up catching 10. Several times we had to drop back five or six times to hook up, but every time we finally got the 30 plus pounders next to the boat, they had big friends tagging along.

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First Phin

Florida Sportsman member: Kim Chi

With my son on the rod he fights it to the boat, which seemed like eternity and I stretched out to gaff this one to make sure he didn’t get away, gaff hits the target and my son’s first dolphin is in the box and I feel relief!

Click here for full forum report.


SLI Gaffers

Florida Sportsman member: Captain Dave

We worked the area for a half hour or so when Pete and I both saw a nice gaffer approaching the starboard rigger bait. Pete hooked her up and fought her like a champ and I put her to sleep with a stroke of the gaff.

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Grocery Run

Florida Sportsman member: DeHaven

After 30 minutes we determined they were strong and healthy and switched from bottom rigs to trolling gear in 180 feet and headed East. We started picking fish off one at a time every thirty minutes or so blind trolling all the way to 400 feet.

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Ponce Variety

Florida Sportsman member: Fool’s Gold

We were moving south and into the 28th fathom when we came across a pallet. It had several keeper tripletail, which we caught four of. While trying to catch the tripletail a couple random dolphin swam by two different times and we caught them both.

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Port Canaveral Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: tonytali

My wife and I decided to go out deep for mahi. We left around 8am and put lines in at 200 feet. Our first bite was a 30 pound mahi around 400 feet. We trolled out to 1000 feet and picked up six smaller phins along the way.

Click here for full forum report.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Port Canaveral Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: tonytali

My son and I left Bluepoints at 7:30, seas were big and a little confused so it was slow going out but put lines in at 120 and within 10 minutes had a nice mahi.

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East Central Dolphin Bite

Florida Sportsman member: DolphinTailin

We leave the weed patch and head off to the Southeast and not too far off we find a big blue crate just under the surface, As we pass the crate we look behind the boat and see tons of dolphin greyhounding through our spread, three guys on the boat and all four rods go down.

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Sebastian Bull

Florida Sportsman member: TeamReelShady

We left the inlet at 5:30am and went out to 130 feet, with signs of life we put out lines trolled all the way to 240 feet, when we saw a massive weed line, dragged baits all over with no takers.

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Port Canaveral Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: TIGHTLINEZOFFSHORE

So then we decided to head through 8a to the buoy trolling and had several short strikes and 3 cuda knock downs. Then in 100 feet we landed our first phin. On the way back line a red and white islander gets smoked then goes slack, finally catch up to the line and reel in a nice wahoo.

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New Personal Best

Florida Sportsman member: dtm

I slowed the boat and looked back and this fish was jumping about 300yds back. Alex went to work pumping and winding. After a while the fish came alongside we got a good look and seen he was a nice one.

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Ponce Offshore Fun

Florida Sportsman member: Koifarmer

We then freelined some squid wrapped in chumdrop chum balls and it did not take long before we were hooked up . The fish were shy , 15 pound fluorocarbon and a small circle hook did the trick. We lost many many fish , but did manage to get 4 fish up to 9 pounds.

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Cobia X7

Florida Sportsman member: Paragon1

“After about an hour or so we finally got to my first spot to try for some early morning cobia. We weren’t disappointed. On the first drop we had two hits, with me getting the hookup.”

Want to catch cobia like these? Click here for how-to videos, feature stories, and more.


Tripletail Fun

Florida Sportsman member: Docked Wages

Some chunky bamboo we came across north of the Port last friday. After releasing a few shorts we motored up and filmed a variety of species co-mingling underneath. Two Tripletail stuck around for the video.

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East Central Dolphin and Coia

Florida Sportsman member: Paragon1

My boat is too low to the water to sight fish them effectively, so instead I prefer jigging deep structure. So in 100 plus feet of water we started working. First one came aboard on about the third drift, when I spotted them on the finder and decided to drop one last time before resetting. Nice 35 pounder to start the day.

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Port Canaveral Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: Hotpursuit

With fish in the box, things slow for a bit as we continue east. We found scattered weeds and what appeared to be an upwelling or something with dirty green water on the edge of the stream. Start working the area when the close pink and white skirted hoo gets slammed for the second time.

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December Dolphin Bite

Florida Sportsman member: cflcycleparts

The water temp was a bleak 70 degrees, our only hope was to make it into the warmer waters of the stream. We make our way out to the cones about 30 miles out and find 74.99 degree water. It’ll do. We happen to run by some debris including a floating log with weeds around it, and then pandemonium.

Click here for full forum report.

 

 

 


Sebastian Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: bighardey

We put the lines back out and slow trolled at 5 knots and about 11:15 on blue & green Islander skirted ballyhoo the hoo hits hard, heads deep. Yanked her back to the boat nice and easy, gaffed and put in the box. It was a super day and good to be back.

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Record Breaker Out of Ponce

Florida Sportsman member: InLimbo

No further bite came after the first couple of hits. I said, “maybe you should drop down a little more and she interrupted and said “no, no, no, she’es still there I know it” so I shut up and watched as we both concentrated on the rod tip then the rod tip just bent straight down, her face turned red and all of her effort when into turning the reel and it was on. Hook up! She was right, she was still there. The 15 minute battle began.

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Red Snapper and More out of Ponce Inlet

Florida Sportsman member: Fool’s Gold

Made some stops early Friday way south and shallower to try and get away, we did get away from the crowd but also the snapper. Moved out to around 95 feet and caught our limit rather quickly up to 15 pounds. Picked up a few triggers, sea bass and a cobia both days.

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Hitting the Nearshore Numbers

Florida Sportsman member: Davidson

Good day nearshore. We were on fish all day in about 50 feet of water. A lot of big jacks, Bonita, sharks, and a few cobia were still around. We were able to get a couple for the freezer. Water has definitely warmed up, showing 76 degrees all day.

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Canaveral Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: Canaveral Offshore

Forum member Canaveral Offshore found the Dolphin in the east central section. Multiple trips producing great numbers of quality fish. Fishing in 120 to 240 feet of water.

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First Hoo and A Good One at That

Florida Sportsman member: psless

Made it to about 165 feet and saw some weed lines so we began trolling. Fairly early in the morning we snagged this beast on a mono leader. Hook was barely in his mouth when we gaffed him! Not a bite the rest of the day. Had some sushi this past weekend, awesome! First time catching and eating wahoo.

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Cobia Chaos

Florida Sportsman member: Keystroke

I soon realize that he is trying to save his other rod that has fallen in the water. You see the jig pole he had sat down in the heat of the moment had gotten caught in the prop and was yanked in the water. I watch the cobia disappear yet again as Dave splashes headfirst within 15 feet of her. So I’m standing there with my live sardine dangling, watching this spectacle. I pitch the sardine into the water, stick the rod in a holder, flip the bail open and go to assist my man overboard.

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Port Canaveral Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: captryan5878

First bait in was a large split tail mullet that got tagged in the prop wash as I was dropping it back. Got a 30 pound bull almost boat side and flipped a tipped jig to about a 15 pound cow that was trailing. Both came unglued 5 seconds later. Depressing, but it was a good sign. Got our 5 bait spread deployed with a variation of split tail mullet and skirted hoos. Every color produced strikes. Ended up with 5 quality fish in the boat up to 25 pounds.

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Sebastian Inlet Phins

Florida Sportsman member: beachsideandy

Checked out some stacked weed lines from 72 to 80 feet, but the water was still cold. Headed out to around 250 feet where we had a temperature change of 73.5 to 75.5 degrees with a good amount of weeds mixed in. Picked up four phins with this one being the largest. They seemed to be hitting small green and green and yellow lures with medium hoos, pretty close to the boat, clipped down off the transom.

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Solo Trip Produces Dinner

Florida Sportsman member: ownleme

Found a great rip in 330 feet with a 3 degree temperature change 73 to 76 degrees, scattered weed line, and ripping current on the east side. First strike before 8am and kept coming. At one point I had just put one in the box, had one still pulling on another line, and tossed my alien head at its shadow to hook up with 20 plus pounder.

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Plan B, for Bottom

Florida Sportsman member: Keystroke

Cobia sight fishing conditions were poor so we decided to work some bottom spots. We got on one spot that was loaded with big triggers. They showed nicely on the Furuno elevated above the reef. It was sweet hooking them on a 2 ounce jig with strip. Popping this on the bottom was fun and more productive than a typical trigger rig. But, when my fancy jigging rod doubled over, I said “that’s no trigger boys”. I’d work her up a few pumps then she’d tear the 30 pound braid right back off.

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East Central Dolphin Days

Florida Sportsman member: captryan5878

Pulled skirted hoo’s with a variety of colors including green, pink and blue. Also dragged a few large split tail mullet down deep. No certain color worked better than the other. Put 10 good dolphin on ice including 2 very nice cows! Lost a monster 40 pound class bull boat side. It was painful to watch him swim off, but at the same time, we ended up with more meat than we know what to do with. Great day on the water.

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Light Tackle Red Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: Keystroke

But this time the light line held and after several sizzling runs Sam worked the fish ever so slowly to the surface. When I saw the sow snapper I couldn’t believe its size and that Sam had landed it on such light gear. I became a little sad as I realized that I would never be able to bust his chops again for his use of baby fishing gear while bottom fishing.

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Ponce Wahoo and King

Florida Sportsman member: dtm

Took out my Buddy John along with my boy Charlie. We got an early start and made some good bait. Seas were sloppy all day. We tried the bottom first which stayed sharked up. We mostly worked deeper at 140 feet, where we found red snapper and sharks. We then went to 180 and got away from most of the sharks. Had a couple AJs on. One came unbuttoned and put one in the boat. Decided to go on the troll for barracudas and bonitos and then we score with a Wahoo. There are some shrimpers out there in about 180 feet. We anchored up we worked our way toward one and got slammed again a smoker king[...]

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Ponce Inlet Red Snapper

Florida Sportsman member: Blue

Took a beating getting out – our original plan was to hit a couple of the deep spots at 35 miles or so. At 17 the pounding got so bad we called an audible. Right then we lost the DSM sounder – so now we got to fish blind….no fish finder makes it tough to catch bottom fish. Put the radar on and looked for other boats. Pulled out the paper charts and did a quick cross reference with spots loaded into the GPS plotter… off to a public site (11). Pretty much non stop action once we were able to mark where the first fish were hitting. A few break offs – probably shark or cuda. Bunch of small ARS as well got donated to the BIG cuda’s hanging out under the boat – but we made it and turned in some decent numbers.

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Sebastian Inlet Wahoo

Florida Sportsman member: Cabanaboy

Short n sweet… We headed out of Sebastian Inlet Saturday am around 5:45 am… We heard the bite has been hot around 120 feet, so with the seas a bit fussy we put it at 100 feet around 7 am. We used our typical spread with 2 trolling weights, 2 outriggers, 1 short line, and 1 shotgun. We landed a barracuda immediately. Ten minutes later the shotgun goes off with the horse ballyhoo purple and black islander with 8 ounce chin weight, yes 8 oz. We had our first wahoo of the season on the deck.

We loose our second engine during the fight.. bad prime bulb i believe…we end up tacking between 95 and 125..weeds everywhere but the winds did not allow any formation…ended up landing 2 peanut dolphin around 24-25″ that got sent back to the ocean Gods…

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Port Canaveral Red Snapper & Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: Sea Hunt

Left the dock about 7:30 – did not see any readily available bait fish , so just went with frozen ballyhoos. Arrived at 8a with maybe a dozen other boats already there. For about an hour we trolled around without a strike, nor did we notice anybody else doing any better. As some other boats left – we headed to the weather buoy. Arriving near the buoy , put out the Ballyhoo with Sea Witches in front. Within 15 minutes we got this Dolphin which apparently was all by himself out there ! For the next hour – all we got was one shark after the other – all in the 2 to 3 feet size range. Decided to get away from the sharks – so set course for the inlet just before noontime. With 15 more miles to the inlet, we spotted a couple flying fish in some widely scattered weeds at about 85 feet deep. We put out the baits again and wound up getting this red snapper on the ballyhoo/sea witch rig ! As we got the snapper coming up near the surface, we saw over a dozen school mates following him up !

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Seabastian Mangrove Snapper & More

Florida Sportsman member: Kapt.Hook

Dirty water! Stated out at bethal trolling with nothing to show for it. then headed up to the 90′ bar drifting the NE current 1.5 knots live ballyhoo on the flat line got nailed but ended up pulling the hook. It seemed like it was a good size king but who knows.. We then anchored up on one of the county sites and got some nice hits at first but the hook couldn’t find the sweet spot, then I finally was able to berry my hook into one of the biggest mangos Iv caught so I guess I could say its my personal best. Black sea bass are everywhere and of good size we didnt catch any under 12 inches. I was unsure of the season dates State vs Federal so they were all released. We were using pogy chunks. Water was green/dirty everywhere we went[...]

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Phins Off Ponce Inlet

Florida Sportsman member: higmister

We left the dock at 6 and headed east. The ride out was bumpy but the seas laid down for us in the afternoon. Started seeing flyers and birds in the 200 feet range and lines out. First knock down on the first bait out before we could even put it in the outrigger. Stayed between 200-280 all day. We took 26 phins and a wahoo home. Released some peanuts and a ton of short strikes. Top skirts was blue/green and white/black.

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Port Canaveral Cobia

Florida Sportsman member: Off Shore Dude

Went out today looking for some tripletails and shaking down my brothers boat. To my delight, what I thought was a tripletail turned out to be a cobia. Not a giant fish but after such a lousy cobia season it made my day. Had fun catching him on light tackle. Was using a 1/4 ounce pink jig head with a large live shrimp w/tail fin removed (hooked backwards).

Also, we were out in the Banana river Sunday afternoon and the trout bite was great. I think we caught about 10 trout (upper slot) and some huge ladyfish. Basically fished the biggest mullet schools we could find. Caught them on live mullet and 1/8 ounce jig heads w/soft baits. Released everything.

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Port Canaveral Dolphin

Florida Sportsman member: Full Throttle

We started out late, with no intentions of fishing all day.Just wanted to check things out before the tournament was called on Saturday. Ran out and found a sweet rip and weedline at 140 and 190 feet, but water didn’t look great. I tossed two baits out and trolled for about 20-30 minutes just to see. With no luck, we pulled up and ran out deeper until I finally found some clean water finally at 850 feet and 38 miles out found a sweet rip and weedline. I put the full spread out and within 5 minutes we had our first knockdown. We re-rigged and 20 minutes later a big dolphin comes storming the spread from the line. We watched her get behind 2 lures before finally crushing the dolphin colored islander! The fish goes crazy and it is an awesome sight to see! My wife grabs the rod and 20 minutes later we put the 32 pound cow in the boat. Biggest cow I have seen

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Port Canaveral Dolphin & Tripletail

Florida Sportsman member: InLimbo

The “gettin-her-wet” fishing trip turned into a camping trip with the RV to Jetty Park and a trolling trip for 5 teenagers for my sons 19th bday. I was happy to ablige. Headed out first light even with the weather questionable but were greeted with decent seas. Hit the edge of the stream wet the first line and was hit with the rod in my hand before I could get into the rod holder. No jumping equaled a bonita but quickly picked up the first small dolphin. After a slow troll and a weakening rip decided to head deeper only to find a great rip, color change and weeds where we had more than 15 knock downs, including a tripletail and 10 dolphin in the box. Nothing huge but the boys loved it and we had some restocking material for the freezer.

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Port Canaveral Dolphin & Amberjacks

Florida Sportsman member: ACME Ventures Fishing

Clearing conditions Tuesday allowed us to find some nice color changes and weedlines that though not teaming with fish did produce. We picked up some Mahi before fighting AJ’s. A lot of Cuda’s and Sharks at the wrecks, but we still filled up on AJ’s. The AJ’s Tuesday were mostly just over the min size, but with hardly a worm in them were great for the icebox. With a couple youngsters onboard not big enough to tackle the AJ’s, we finished the day on shallower structure so they could have some fun. We got Cobia this way, not huge but big enough to take home! Wednesday was much less productive. While we did battle a lot of fish, more short AJ’s, Cuda and Shark that anything.

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Ponce Inlet Surprise

Florida Sportsman member: Docked Wages

Not a great weekend for fishing but we managed to get out for a few hours Saturday morning and again Sunday afternoon.

Saturday we ran out of Sebastian on the Head Hunter to troll for dolphin and found it to be slow due to the cold water. The temps were less than 72 degrees all the way out to 180’ and there we released a few peanuts before landing an nice 18 pounder. We put him on ice and headed in to look for cobia but the 66 degree water inside was not conducive to hold fish so we made and early day of. Back at the ramp the FWC guy checked our fish box and found another peanut on ice with our catch. Seeing no skin on this one he gave us a pass as this fish was regurgitated from the stomach of the bigger dolphin. Just goes to show that everything eats a dolphin, even other dolphin.

Sunday looked like real nice cobia weather until we decided to go at 1 pm. After getting on the water around 2pm the wind shifted and started to increase. We chased some free swimmers around until the clouds moved in. As the afternoon advanced, the winds increased and it began to get sporty and wet for a flats boat. Tough conditions for sight fishing so we made an early afternoon of it and came home for cobia St Patty dinner.

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Ponce Inlet Surprise

Florida Sportsman member: Davidson

Me and my buddy Carlos went out of Ponce inlet Tuesday looking for some of those brown bombers. We headed up and down the beach with nothing to show for it until we came up on a school of what looked like red fish. We motored in front of the school and casted choice live baits at the school and got snubbed over and over. I switched up to a jig with squid and bam! Hooked up I finally wrestled it to the boat and to our surprise it was the biggest black drum I have ever seen, let alone caught.

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First Fish on New Boat

Florida Sportsman member: Final Point

een looking to upgrade my bayboat and after 5 months of searching I finally came accross my new baby….a 2007 Triton 240 LTS! Had to go to Tx to get her but now she’s mine. So after getting her here, I decided to go out and see if the Triton could catch fish or not.

We made quick work of a livewell full of threadfins and hit the inlet. On the first drift we had a double hook-up on jumbo redfish. Mine came unglued but my wife whipped hers into submission[...]

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Port Canaveral Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: Reel Finatic

Put lines in at 160 feet and trolled out to 300 feet with only one wahoo. Which was lost at the boat. Neighbors father was down from Boston, So I wanted to show him what a red snapper looked like. We caught Numerous red snapper and we were rewarded with a nice gag grouper. All fish were vented and swam back to the bottom. Sure wish we could have brought the grouper home with us While bottom fishing we had a school of dolphin come to the boat, we were able to boat 3 of them. Trolled awhile longer and boated one more schoolie dolphin. Then called it a day In by 2:00.

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More Trips at the Port

Florida Sportsman member: codered13

Had a great day out on the water last week with by brother. We were using live shrimp under some floating grass. Caught our limit fairly quick and left them biting before we got locked up. They were everywhere!

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Port Canaveral Tripletail

Florida Sportsman member: QuiksilverIHB

Went out of the port again and caught some nice tripletail. Some on buoys, some on seaweed, and some free swimming/sitting. Got them from 30 feet all the way to 50 feet It’s cool, because I kill the motor as I get close and they hide under my boat. It’s like they think it is floating garbage. The biggest one weighed in at 21lbs.

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Sebastian Offshore Marlin

Florida Sportsman member: togators

A very quite day, only 1 hit. Then in 400 feet at 1:00 port rigger pops and line begins to scream out of a Penn 330 with 30 pound mono with a red/white skirted rigged ballyhoo. Did not want to horse it in because of the light tackle, 2 hours 45 minutes later we finally get it in. Line was wrapped on bill pretty well and the double hooks were set deep in the bottom jaw so we pulled in to clear, photo then released.

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Tripletail Out of the Port

Florida Sportsman member: QuiksilverIHB

Went out of Port Canaveral and we got some nice Tripletail on jigheads with live shrimp. Didn’t see any cobia, but it was still well worth it. The biggest one went for 18 pounds.

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End of the Year Wahoo

Florida Sportsman member: fltekdiver

Had my buddy cancelle this last night due to Christmas Eve family get together.Left Port Canaveral by myself at 8:00am Christmas Eve in my 21 foot Proline WA. Started out at Reef 8A, catching some bonitas, in Hopes of a big king! After the bonitas stripped half a dozen of my ballyhoo, I headed out to the 20 mile weather Buoy. By the time I got out there, wind had picked up ad it was overcast. The seas were about 3 to 4 feet.I switched all the skirts over to Black & Red, Black/Purple/Red etc for Wahoo [...]

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Epic Day Out of the Port

Florida Sportsman member: Cabanaboy

What a beautiful day to fish! Loaded up the 19 footer and headed east. We left the port around 530 am and had the throttle wide open the whole way. We headed east and found some weed at 160′…3 dolphin in the boat,no misses. We kept moving east. We had 4 lines down and 4 dolphin doing arial acrobatics. Landed 2 and lost 2. headed east to 400′ where oh me oh my the debris was everywhere and fields of weed..[...]

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Clean Water, Steady Action

Florida Sportsman member: tonytali

…Water was clear and blue on the east side. There was debri on the edge but it was pretty scattered and did not appear to be holding anything in particular. Action was steady and we caught a few more baracudas, three sharks (triple header), and boated five phins (10-15 lbs). [...]

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Dolphin and Blackfin off of Sebastian Inlet

Florida Sportsman member: inxanth

Started off setting lines and was surprised to hook up with a blackfin. Within an hour and a half went four for six on blackfin, which is a rare treat, especially not that far from Bethel Shoals. Stumbled across a weedline that was about three miles long. Trolled it up and back four times and boated four dolphin out of six [...]

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Three Days off Ponce

Florida Sportsman member: InLimbo

Docked boat at Down The Hatch Thursday night for her three day stay. Out of the inlet at 7 with a net full all three days. Calm seas Friday and Saturday and a little heavy on Sunday. Most fish caught in 100 to 120 and 140. Warmer water in 80 feet then cooled down a bit further out. Lots of bait and activity on the water all weekend. The guests on Friday and Saturday limited on red snapper within about an hour. Several big ones came off so we changed the tackle for Saturday and the overall size increased [...]

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PC Snapper Limit

Florida Sportsman member: donh

Well, I got an itch to get a few snapper Sunday morning after looking at the bouy report so I called my neighbors (Bill and Denise) and they said they were in. Loaded boat and on our way at 10 a.m we stopped got a few gallons of gas, hit sunrise, grabbed a couple dozen pinfish (didn’t want to spend any time catching bait, it was already late), hit the ramp and off we went [...]

 

 


Snapper Biting out of Ponce

Florida Sportsman member: InLimbo

Started with a really nice fun trip out of Ponce with the snotty seas that took us over an hour and a half just to get to 80 feet for the first stop. Did I say fun? Very much a roller coaster ride. We new we would see the this and then thought we would probably find that the bottom was all stirred up. It was. Dirty water and a strong current kept the sharks happy when we came off. Winds laid down and following seas for the ride in were nice [...]

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East Central Mixed Bag

Florida Sportsman member: capt mike mann

The sight casting for reds and trout in mosquito lagoon has been pretty good in extremely shallow water. They both have been tailing in the grass and are eating fly, live shrimp and gulp shrimp. There is still some water clean enough to find cruising reds the secret is to move very slow. Offshore the mangrove and red snapper have been eating well [...]

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Solid Offshore Bite off PC

Florida Sportsman member: ACME Ventures Fishing

Another week fishing, with greatly varied seas and fishing. The fishing has been much like the water temps, hot and cold. The cold water has moved the fish around, and had them biting one day, and tight lipped the next. The fish are also on the move, with big bottom fish often in close and shallow waters [...]

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Port Canaveral: Hot Bottom Bite

Florida Sportsman member: ACME Ventures Fishing

Another day of fair weather and fishing. Winds were forecast to pick up, and that usually means the seas will follow. We have a nice breeze all day, and the sea’s stayed fairly nice all day. Fishing is still a question mark however, with pockets of cool bottom and dirty water creating issues [...]

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Kingfish at 8A

Florida Sportsman member: Sea Hunt

Had more time to fish today but my early start was a bit delayed by a submarine heading out to sea. We had to go all the way down to the Church steeple to find any Pogeys. They were so close up on the beach – it seemed one wrong wave and we would be near aground ! – Reading a scant 4 foot on the sounder – one lucky toss of the net gave us plenty to fill the baitwell.

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Nice Bull Off Sebastian

Florida Sportsman member: Cabanaboy

Headed out around 5:30 a.m., shot straight out to the west edge where there was a nice rip, but no weeds. Ran out to 500 feet and didn’t see much so we headed back to our rip and found some weeds further north. Trolled it and landed a big bull on a 24oz. trolling weight with a blue and white islander [...]

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Florida Sportsman member: ACME Ventures Fishing

With a guest from China and a fishing T=tackle manufactuer on board, we were hoping to find some nice catches this trip. It turned out just fine! We still have fish being found in places that you don’t typically find them [...]

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Holy Pompano!

Doug Gabbert sent in this report of an offshore fishing treat, a monster African pompano, nice catch!

Fischer and I fished the mullet schools all day Saturday for trout, reds and snook. Fischer said he wanted to catch a “big” fish offshore on Sunday, so, we loaded the boat with four 20 pound Shimano Baitrunners and headed out the Sebastian Inlet early Sunday morning. We found several nice pods of greenies off Disney Vero, filled up the live well and headed towards Bethel Shoal to see what we could find. We pulled up on the #10 buoy on the shoal – there were four other boats fishing around it. Fischer tossed a greenie off the bow and almost instantly a school of large African pompano blew the greenie out of the water. The greenie made a mad dash for the boat, but the fish in the picture was faster and ate the bait right beside the boat. The fish literally hit the side of the boat while eating the greenie!

The fight was on. We chased the fish around for a half hour, it gave us some really smoking runs but Fischer was finally able to get it to the side of the boat. I did not want to gaff it, we did not want to kill it, so I put on gloves and was able to get it in the boat after a couple tries. The fish was gassed, so it did not put up much fight at the boat. We snapped a quick picture, then Fischer revived the fish and watched it swim away. Not a bad first cast and Fischer got his wish for a big fish!

 

 

 


PC Offshore Report

Florida Sportsman member: ACME Ventures Fishing

So, were used to NOAA’s forecast being off quite a bit, but this is one trip I’m glad they were off. The forecast was fro seas at 3-4 feet and winds around 10 knots. We barely had a breeze all day, and sea’s never got above 2 feet! It was probably one of the nicer days on the water of the year. Fishing however was somewhat slow, but with great weather we did not mind [...]

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PC Dolphin Catching

Florida Sportsman member: Slacktide

I took a couple that has fished with me a few times in the past and one of my main fishing buddies offshore yesterday. We had 2 dolphin in the box at 1230. I was getting bummed. I had 3 dozen hoo’s prepped with not much to show this late in the game. It turned on in the 4th quarter and we were cleaning dolphin until 11 pm. With a slow morning behind us we decided to pull lines n run out a little further [...]

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Ponce Offshore Gold

Florida Sportsman member: Fool’s Gold

Ran out to 100 feet and found some scattered weeds and a small rip, put the baits in and was pretty busy for about an hour, went 4 for 7 on fins, 3 bailers and a peanut. Also caught a shark trolling, haven’t seen that one. Slowed down so went out deeper and trolled for awhile, no luck so dropped a bait down on the 28 ledge and picked up the AJ. Went back to trolling to have a triple hook up and not land one of them, 2 short strikes and one shook the hook when it jumped, overall nice day on the water.

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Team Bloodstream Trip to Venice

Florida Sportsman member: Docked Wages

This is not a local report but the anglers are. The crew of the F/V Bloodstream loaded up and dragged a new 2011 35 ST Contender on a long haul to Venice LA. The crew making the long haul by vehicle consisted of boat owner and Captain Brian Rimer with Scott Lerhman, Chris Hudson, Billy Fazio and myself [...]

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Sebastian Inlet Offshore Wahoo

Florida Sportsman member: jetpilot

Another slow day of fishing. Still no fish being caught most boats gave up and went bottom fishing. There was also the option to go king fishing outside the inlet with the fleet but opted not to.0I decided to look for wahoo back in at 130′ where we caught our last one on Friday. Started out in 170′ worked out to 350′ and then picked up and ran into 130′. Trolled around there for a few hours and Michelle our mate picked up this wahoo. Any wahoo is a good wahoo in my book!

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Port Canaveral Offshore

Florida Sportsman member: ACME Ventures Fishing

Today was a reef trip, anchored up for the day at 8. Seas were choppy, but not too bad, so despite a wet ride out, it was fast and we were soon fishing. Once there, we set a bait on the planer making a pass down the reef until we got to our target bottom site. It didn’t take long to find a fish.

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Port Canaveral Dolphins and Hoo’s

Florida Sportsman member: ACME Ventures Fishing

This was a little personal fishing time Saturday. With nice seas, I fish with a friend on his boat and got to both fish, enjoy the ride, rather than the norm, which though fun, is WORK! At 130′ we found a very well formed rip which proved to be a fish highway. Most boats were in shallower looking for Cobia, so we had a lot of space to fish [...]

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A Couple Firsts

Florida Sportsman member: TheCollegeKid

Boat in the water at 6:15 a.m. at Canaveral, this was my first trip on a “real” fishing boat. (I’ve only been offshore on party charters until yesterday) We got some pogies and headed out. 1st line in the water, we had a fish within 1 minute. I then fought the largest King of the day for 45 minutes. I also have a cast (broken wrist) on my right hand, so this proved to be difficult. I asked my Doc if I could fish, and he said yes. I’m assuming he thought I was going bass fishing, not fighting 35 lb Kings. We ended up maxing out fairly quickly (8) all over 30lbs [...]

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120 Mile Buoy

Florida Sportsman member: TrophyRoomApp

120 Mile Buoy – Bear Trap – Capt Ed Dwyer. Report from March 1st, 2012. Departed at 8am from Port Canaveral, FL. Aboard – Ed & Candy, Jen & Troy, Garret and Kristin & Scott Wilson. Seas – 4-5 x 5 sec.. Winds 15 knots – Cruising Speed Out 34 knots…

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February Fillets

Florida Sportsman member: Whitner

Headed out of the port at day light and headed East to clean, warm water. Finally found it at the Stream edge in 400 ft. Sitting there was a nice rip with weeds on it. Weather report called for winds to kick up in the afternoon but they gave us a nice window until 3 or so. We also got stopped by “the man” out 34 miles. We have never seen them out that far before, but they wanted to see what we were up to. They never boarded but just asked us some questions and wanted to see our fish [...]

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Florida Big Bend Weekend Fishing 4Cast

Homosassa to Steinhatchee
Includes Homosassa, Crystal River, Yankeetown, Waccasassa Bay, Cedar Key, Suwannee, Horseshoe Beach, Steinhatchee and Keaton Beach

April 21-23

Good catches of cobia have bent the rods of many Nature Coast anglers this week. The best way to catch a cobia is be prepared for them. I’ve had clients ask me on the phone can we catch cobia on our trip and my reply if we’re fishing for trout trout in deep water with light tackle then there is a good possibility but if we leave port with the intention of catching cobia it will never happen. Cobia appear and like I said be prepared with a medium heavy spinning rod with a eel like soft plastic to cast at them or the best of all a live pinfish. I always call cobia a opportunity fish and now they are in full swing heading north up our coast line. The best depth has been in the 10 to 15 foot range near high profile rocks.

The trout bite is consistent on the keys on high water with D.O.A. 5.5” jerk bait in glow or glow gold rush belly on incoming tide. Redfish on the same points and rocky bottom but live or cut pinfish has been the best bait. Back out the the 10 foot depths the trout, blue fish, sea bass and small grouper are biting excellent. Look for spotty bottom and the best bait has been a MirrOlure LIL’ John in new penny, bourbon, golden bream and water melon red flake. High incoming tide will be mid day this weekend. W

Capt. William Toney | (352) 422-4141 | captwilliamtoney@bontheweb.net | www.homosassainshorefishing.com

Florida 10,000 Islands Weekend Fishing 4Cast


Naples to Flamingo
Includes Naples, Marco Island, Everglades City and Chokoloskee


April 21-23

Weather & Tides

After a week of strong southerly winds and a late week cold front, this week has brought us double digit east winds that will continue through the weekend, with day time temperatures peaking in the mid-80 degree range. Sunday looks to have a 50% chance of rain in the afternoon, as hints of the daily summer afternoon thundershowers are on the horizon. The full moon was on the 11th this month, so look for stronger incoming tides in the morning hours this weekend, but reducing in velocity each day the full moon remains in our rear view windows.

Florida Wildlife Commission

At its April 20 meeting in Tallahassee, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) approved closing Gulf state waters to recreational harvest of greater amberjack for the remainder of 2017, starting April 22. This is consistent with the amberjack closure in Gulf federal waters that went into effect March 24, 2017. Both state and federal waters will reopen Jan. 1, 2018.
 
“While there are not a lot of amberjack caught in state waters, this is a chance to take a step back and see what is happening with the fishery and help ensure future fishing opportunities,” said Commissioner Chuck Roberts.
 
These closures were put into place because NOAA Fisheries estimates that the annual federal recreational quota was met. The quota is the amount of fish that can be caught each year while maintaining a sustainable fishery. Closing state waters for the rest of 2017 will help minimize chances of a quota overage. Federal rules require that any harvest in excess of the amberjack quota must be deducted from the next year’s quota, which can result in a shortened federal season.
 
To learn more about greater amberjack, visit MyFWC.com/Fishing and click on “Saltwater Fishing,” “Recreational Regulations” and “Amberjack.”

Inshore

Migrating fish continue to move in waves throughout the area with several area captains reporting solid, albeit spotty, hookups. Seems as though live mullet, threadfin herrings and dollar sized blue crabs were the ticket this past week. The offshore fish, such as those at the legendary Mudhole have been moved in a bit with the southerly winds, but more pods of fish will reload that area this weekend. In addition, outside of Round Key, along with the countless islands to the south with shoaled or harder bottom are holding migrating fish on the very outside of the hard bottom. In addition the countless passes throughout the area are having fish inhabit them and they are most active on the outgoing tides. Be sure to check Sandfly, Dismal and West passes throughout the outgoing tide.

Snook continue shine this spring. Migrating fish are set up on area beaches throughout the region and are also relating to outside islands that have hard or shoaled bottom as well. This is a great opportunity to catch some linesiders while hunting your silver kings. Pilchards in the 3-4” size seem to work best right now and will keep the bi-catches to a minimum. If you can find some hard bottomed areas with downed timber and current, you may just need to put the shallow water anchor down and have some fun. For those traveling afoot, be sure to get up early and check out the laid up fish on the beaches. While not giants, you can sharpen your sight fishing skills by targeting the linesiders from the area beaches. Be sure to be stealthy and downsize your artificial baits.

Offshore

Good reports of the continued red grouper fishing in rather shallow waters has anglers hitting the water hard the last few weeks. Fish are still hovering in that 30-40 foot mark with good reports of fish being caught on cut bait over hard and live bottom. Bonus gag grouper are also in the mix and you’ll certainly known when you have one on as they are notoriously great fighters, but remember, season is currently closed on these marbled gems, so be sure to get a quick photo and let em’ go, so they can grow!

Getting some secretive reports on captains and die-hard anglers reporting some permit are around along with decent sized cobia on the towers and those oh-so special wrecks that have good, higher relief to them. Be sure to have some crabs in the livewell.

Captain Steve Dall
USCG Licensed Captain- 10K Islands & Estero Bay
(239) 405-9898
www.poseidonschoice.com