December 01, 2023
Capt. Alan Sherman covers Deerfield Beach to Key Largo & Flamingo to Cape Sable, including Pompano Beach, Ft. Lauderdale, Miami and Homestead.
December 1 - 3
Deerfield Beach to Key Largo & Flamingo to Cape Sable
NOAA Weather is forecasting winds to be out of the east to southeast at 10 to 15 knots and with gusts to 20 knots late Friday. Saturday winds are forecasted to be 10 to 15 knots out of the southeast and then on Sunday 5 to 10 knots out of the southeast.
Pompano Beach, Port Everglades, Haulover, Government Cut to Ocean Reef
Snook fishermen have till December 15th to catch and keep slot-sized snook before the snook season closes till February 1st. Snook have been plentiful in the ocean inlets and have been eating large live shrimp, live pilchards, threadfin herrings, pinfish, and No Live Bait Needed 6-inch jig heads tipped with a 6-inch paddle tail. Look for the snooks near the rocky jetty shorelines. Shrimp have been running from the inshore bays to the ocean inlets on the outgoing tides. When the shrimp are running the snook bite has been very good. Tarpons, bluefish, Spanish mackerel, and snappers are feeding on the shrimps when they run. Spanish mackerel have been in good numbers in our area. The mackerels can be found at times from the Oceanside piers, in the open waters from the beaches out to over 100 feet of water chasing ballyhoo schools. Keep an eye out for hovering and diving frigate birds that are trying to steal a ballyhoo from a feeding mackerel. Trolling live ballyhoos and lipped hard plastics as you look for feeding fish and you should get some mackerel hookups. You can also anchor your boat and chum the area with live pilchards to get the mackerels around the boat. Kingfish to 25 pounds have been In our area in numbers I haven’t seen in years. Most of the kings have been in the three to 7-pound range. The kings can be found in depths from 40 feet of water out to 120 feet of water. The kingfish have been eating live pilchards and ballyhoos. Blackfin tuna, bonitos, sailfish and wahoos have been chasing the ballyhoo schools offshore. Keep an eye out for showering schools of ballyhoo. Don’t be surprised if a small group of large dolphin fish bust in these ballyhoo schools. Dolphin fish have been scattered further offshore. Bottom fishing over the wrecks and rock piles in depths from 80 to 240 feet of water has been producing catches big mutton, vermillion, and yellowtail snappers plus some legal red groupers. The nighttime reef fishing continues to be good for an assortment of snappers, bluefish, kingfish, Spanish mackerel, grunts, blue runners and toros. The dredge holes in 60 feet of water that are close to the reef have produced a lot of fish recently. High tide at Government Cut Friday night will be at 11:20.
North Biscayne Bay Inshore
Snook fishing, tarpons, black drums, and jack crevalles have been biting live pilchards, shrimp, mullets, and chunks of fresh crab. Look for these fish in Maule Lake, Dumfoundling Bay and along the seawall in the Intracoastal Waterway north of Haulover Inlet. In the open waters of North Bay Spanish mackerel, bluefish, jacks, bluerunners, and ladyfish have been chasing schools of pilchards. Look for diving terns to help you locate the fish and then cast live pilchards, lipped hard plastics, and silver spoons at the feeding fish. Sea trout continue to be scattered over the grass flats from 79th Street south to 36th Street. A live shrimp or pilchard fished under a Cajun Thunder float is my favorite way to fish for the trout. If you like casting artificial baits, then give the No Live Bait Needed 3/8-ounce jig head with a Twisted T 3-inch soft plastic tail for the trout. Nighttime snook and small to medium-sized tarpon fishing had been great when the shrimp have been running. Hit the lighted dock lights and bridge shadow lines for these fish. Low tide at Indian Creek Saturday morning is at 7:05.
South Biscayne Bay
Spanish mackerel and bluefish have been roaming the waters of South Bay. Look for diving terns to help you locate the fish. Anchoring in 10 feet of water and chumming with frozen blocks of ground chum is a great way to get the fish near the boat. A live shrimp or pilchard fished under a Cajun Thunder float works well on these fish. The Finger Channels have been producing rod-bending action from small mutton snappers, mangrove snappers, jack crevalles, porgies, yellowjacks, barracudas, and sharks. Live shrimp and pilchards fished near the bottom is my preferred way to target these fish. Low tide at Soldier Key on Saturday will be at 6:35 in the morning.
High water in the morning in Florida Bay will allow fishermen with shallow drafting boats to get up on the flats to target snook, redfish, and sea trout. The fish might not be too aggressive due to the chilly morning water but as the sun gets up they should start biting. Soft plastics rigged weedless is the way to go in these areas. Fishing live shrimp on a jig head or under a Cajun Thunder float works well on the snook, redfish, sea trout, black drum, and sheepshead in the channels that border the shallow Florida Bay flats. As the day warms up look for tripletails to be shadowing the crab trap buoys outside of the Parks boundary lines. A live shrimp rarely gets refused by the tripletails. Spanish mackerel and bluefish can be chummed to the boat south and west of Sandy Key. Anchor and chum to get the fish to the boat and then fish a live shrimp on a long-shank hook to catch these fish. In the backcountry, look for Goliath groupers, snappers, and redfish to be looking for something to eat along the mangrove tree shorelines in Shark River, Oyster Bay and Whitewater Bays. A live small ladyfish or jack will get the goliaths and a shrimp will get the snappers and redfish. High tide in Florida Bay on Saturday will be at 5:28 AM and at the mouth of Shark River low tide is at 11:29 AM.
Capt. Alan Sherman