Florida Sportsman February 2016

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Tournament Calendar

The most comprehensive, widely-based list of tournaments for the state of Florida. Please send your updated tournament information to chris.collins@floridasportsman.com.  …»


Basic Florida Seagrass Facts

A primer on the favorite flats habitat. They say Inuit people can identify seven different kinds of snow. There are almost that many kinds of sea grass on Florida’s flats, but if you can tell the difference between just three varieties, it’s likely to make you a considerably better angler.


Mutton Snapper Workshops Begin Monday

If you fish for mutton snapper or are just interested in their management, please attend one of these workshops.

World Cat 32CC Running

World Cat 320CC

Few boats are capable of combining extreme passenger comfort with tournament winning fishablity, this is one that does. Anglers will appreciate a leaner rigging station with built-in tackle storage, live baitwell and in-deck insulated fish boxes


Finding the Secret Creeks

I remember vividly the day I discovered the pleasure of fishing water with current. One day, on a whim, I took my boys—they were very young then—to the Santa Fe River north of Gainesville. We found gin-clear springs spaced perfectly for swim breaks. Eel grass waved in the current. Silver mullet darted, while golden shiners and snails slowly foraged on the algae growing on the blades of grass.


Florida Daytime Swordfish

We tell you exactly how to catch a huge Florida swordfish during the day. “There was talk the only way to catch them was to do it at night when thefish were closer to the surface feeding,” said Taute, smiling. “That’s not true any longer.”

Kenney on Kissimmee

HD – Kenney on Kissimmee

Kenney on Kissimmee, photo by Vance McCullough. J.T. Kenney at a FLW Tour event on Lake Kissimmee. Read about some top bass tactics in Vance McCullough’s feature story, “5 Headline Moves,” in the February issue of Florida Sportsman.

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Our Florida Reefs Introduces Possible MPAs

After two years of planning meetings, this week the Our Florida Reefs Initiative unveiled its working recommendations to protect reef systems off the four-county southeast Florida coastline, from offshore of St. Lucie Inlet in Martin County south to the northern border of Biscayne National Park in Miami-Dade County.


Fishing Rights are Under Attack in Southeast Florida

Our Florida Reefs, which refers to itself innocuously as a “community-based planning process,” in reality is attempting to stop you from fishing. They have proposed 28 marine protected areas that would prohibit recreational fishing by creating “no-take zones” from Stuart Inlet all the way to Key Biscayne. They also want to nominate the entire area as a National Marine Sanctuary.


Bass in the ‘Burbs

A streetwise fishing quest amid the sprawling city scape of Orlando. As a 12-year-old in ’62 Orlando, I mostly fished four nearby lakes. Equipped with the normal fascination with any tap transmitted from an artificial worm.


Skinny Water Sight Fishing

Florida Sportsman Member: SpaceCoast Slayer The water is crystal clear in most spots I went to and I got to watch every one of em clobber the lure. No heroes but it’s awesome to see them eat whether they are 3 pounds or 30 pounds.


Ten Thousand Islands Backcountry Kayaking

My quest for solitude and hidden fishing hot spots that didn’t involve a multi-day, overnight paddle or motor boat had started a few days earlier with Capt. Charles Wright, local ecotour operator and fishing guru.

Bait struggling against a float rings the dinner bell for dolphin. The float itself may be an appetizer of sorts.

Fishing a Float Offshore

I’m convinced that pegging a foam cork about four feet above a live bait is one of the best tactics for mixed-bag drift-fishing on the summer ocean.


Counter-Current Casting

This “current-countering” cast is ideal whether you’re casting from the opposite bank on a narrow creek, or from a stationary boat on bigger water. It helps around docks, and is useful when surf fly fishing, too, where waves or longshore current tends to sweep your fly down the beach too quickly.


Python Challenge Update

The first full week of the Python Challenge is over and Team Florida Sportsman has yet to bag a python. It’s not for lack of trying, however. This past weekend Chris Patricella, Ethan Patricella, Eric Bramblet and I logged many trail walking miles and many more miles driving on asphalt, dirt and sometimes no roads.


Removing Hull Stains

If you leave your boat in the water for extended periods of time, or even just run in dirty waters, you’ll find yourself dealing with a stubborn yellowish stain from the waterline down. Freshwater and soap won’t even make a dent in removing this discoloration. Having the right cleaner will make the job painless.


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.

s muttons

Muttons and More

Florida Sportsman member: gdholbrook Forum member gdholbrook had some luck off of Miami recently. Drifting and fishing live pilchards over productive bottom was the ticket.

Lined up and ready to hit the water.

2016 Florida Sportsman Kayak Challenge Recap

Despite wicked conditions of consistent 30 mph winds with gusts up and over 50 mph, 81 registered kayak anglers came out to fish the Florida Sportsman Kayak Challenge. The Florida Sportsman Kayak Challenge was held at the St. Lucie County Fairgrounds on Saturday, January 23, 2016 during the Florida Sportsman Expo event. The procceds from the Florida Sportsman Kayak Challenge went to benefit the Snook & GameFish Foundation.


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.

Billless Blue

A Trip to Remember

Florida Sportsman Member: zmanwhite Day three we headed out and by 9am we have already released 20 fish. Around 11:30 a 600 pound plus blue crashes the left flat ballyhoo and all I can do is grab the rod with Brad yelling “big marlin”, lock it up! I looked at Brad, he looked at me and says “this is a big girl.” When he says that, it’s for real, again well over 600 pounds.

Larry "Fishman" Finch giving a seminar on tips and tactics for pompano.

Fort Pierce Florida Sportsman Expo a Huge Success

With big crowds both Saturday and Sunday, it’s safe to say the Fort Pierce Florida Sportsman Expo was a success!


The Grass Anchor

Spoil the reed and spare the fish. Let’s face it. Dropping even the smallest anchor in a tidal creek or wilderness canal can turn off the fish. Whether it’s the splash, or simply because fish sense your presence, they can be frightened by anchors, particularly in tight quarters.

Sea Born SX22

Sea Born LX22

Having an offshore fishing boat doesn’t mean you have to compromise on family features. At the bow are twin-padded lounges that allow you to face forward while underway. Remove the cushions and backrest and the long insulated compartments below the seating become fish boxes.