ROSE MARINA FISHING REPORT
PREPARED BY THE MARCO ISLAND
CHARTER FISHING CAPTAINS
CONDITIONS: The period of rainy/stormy weather here didn’t last very long…..forecast for this week is total bland…….and should be good for fishing. There is zero rain/storms in the forecast and the winds are in check with some mild afternoon single digit breezes out of the east and southeast which will sustain the clear water we’ve been experiencing these last weeks. The only “devil” that we’ll have to deal with this week is the heat. Forecasts of no cooling rain coupled with light winds will bring some super hot days……the kind that not only wilt the anglers but also effect the fish and their feeding habits. One of the anomalies you’ll experience here as the summer heats up is that fish will avoid the searing direct rays of the sun. When the unfettered sun gets to that point in it’s morning ascent in the backwaters where the rays dive directly into the water, the fish head for shade aka under trees and downed fauna…..offshore the move is to deeper water and tucking themselves under a bottom ledge that affords shade. So, the key tip for this week is to GO EARLY. That will fit nicely this week as we have an early morning incoming tide that peaks mid morning and will feature light winds and clean water. But the water temperature should edge up to the mid 80 degree range as the day wears on.
BACKWATER: There has been huge bait schools appearing in both Passes these last weeks and that should continue into this week with the similar conditions predicted. All that surface activity will draw the feeding sea birds as well the schools of pelagics hoping for a early morning feast. Would suggest, if you go early as indicated, you get position for that early first hour and work either Pass with small tipped jigs on a drift. You should be able to work the area closer to the bottom and away from the surface bait/bird mayhem. Good chance for mackerel and blues, so some wire leader will help you keep some of your tackle in play…….other species can well be pompano, ladyfish, jacks and even some small bonnethead and black tip sharks. As the morning tide fades you’ll want to move either inshore and work the mangrove edges for the good action available on mangrove snapper. Work those downed tree spots until you begin to latch onto some bigger snapper….they school by size so once to find the “big uns” you’ll be setting yourself up for a nice dinner. As the outgoing tide picks up steam late morning try working those same jigs in Hurricane Pass just to the east edge of the Keeywadin Beach for some nice size whiting.
NEARSHORE: As the daily cycle progresses, you’ll see that same action you saw in the Passes early, show itself along the First and Second reefs as the birds and fish continue to chase the food……the serious bird action by pelicans and gulls will show you where to fish. You can either troll a spoon or jig about 75 to 100 yards astern working the surface eruptions at 4-5 it’s…….no need to bait these offerings; their natural action in the water will induce the strike…..an alternative method is to keep the rigs you used earlier in the Passes and work the edges of the numerous surface eruptions……avoid running through the action pools as it will scatter the fish. Tiring of that……might want to run a couple miles north up along the west edges of Keewadin Island and to where the beach homes are located and move into 7-10’ water close in and get some chum started. Good chance for mackerel, both lane and mangrove snapper and maybe even a pompano or two…..all on tipped jigs worked to the bottom under a light chum effort.
OFFSHORE: Seeing sustained action on wrecks and reefs that show bait on fish finder on reverse migration kingfish primarily but also seeing some cobia top water action as well as aggressive shark action at some of the deeper spots. For all action you’ll need a live well with small to mid size blue runners as the bait of choice plus a couple blocks of chum. Set up on spots where there is noticeable bait activity and get the chum going for 10-15 minutes before you set your bait. Kings will be the dominant predator and usually quickly fall for an active blue runner tethered on wire to run 10-15; deep and immersed in a serious chum slick. Make sure your tackle is hefty enough to work a king in the 20-30# range. Good chance for cobia here too but they will come at you right on the surface so it’s a good idea to have some thread herring rigged and ready for a sight cast or these curious and tasty cobia