August 19 to August 25th 2016 Fishing Report
CONDITIONS: Another week of heat but this time it will partially dissipate come mid week as we get a quasi “cool” front through here. The daytime temperatures will drop a good ten degrees and the winds will soar….looking at base winds around ten mph but gusts twenty to thirty and now the really bad part they will be WSW and that has a tendency to foul the water clarity big time. Should ease off by the following weekend but will take a couple more tide turns to get it back to clean. That should also drop the water temperature down into the lower 80’s and activate some of species that have been hiding offshore out of the scorching afternoon heat. The tides will be coming off a full moon forming this Friday and then easing quickly. The morning incoming will be a bit stronger than the afternoon outgoing. Bottom line; don’t think the summer is over here and the serious threat of tropical storms. So keep your eye on the forecasts and be ready just in case.
BACKWATER: Snook love the heat and are staying super active all along the inshore mangrove edges and outside along the shallowest beach edges. And the bait schools are as thick as most of us have ever seen here. So get that cast net in gear and scoop up a couple dozen both for snook bait as well as chum when used in a pre-casting shower. Some good snook spots…the docks along Keeywadin……Henderson Creek in. Rookery Bay……the entry creeks by Johnson Bay. Either tide; look for a shallow spot just off fast moving current. Chance now with the water temperature dipping that we may see some redfish swing back into action. They’ll show first in small schools working the Bay’s (Johnson , Rookery, Addison) and be most active in the last couple hours of the incoming tight to the shaded mangrove overhangs in shallow water. Best here are larger shrimp freelined tight to the target areas. With redfish, you don’t get a strike “per se, your line just takes off with a vengeance. Keep ’em away from structure an and don’t allow them any slack. Seeing some big pompano now in both Capri and Hurricane Passes just in the last and first hours of either tide. Be patient and keep a little motion in your bait (tipped small jig) and they strike with a vengeance…..so be ready.
NEARSHORE: Hopefully, things will pick up here also with the hiccup in the weather expected. Look for the pelagics first thing. In the first 20-30′ of water off the beaches you should see terns and gulls working the surface bait eruptions which are bait schools being surfaced by pelagics (mackerel, bluefish, jacks etc). You can work them by staying mobile and working the perimeter of those eruptions with top water tipped jigs either cast into the edge of the fray or trolled at 4-5 knots, again, out on the perimeter so you don’t spook the school and have it scatter. Snook, as well as being accessible along the passes are thick in the shallow water just off the beaches worked with pilchards or sardines. All are released now as the snook fishery is closed until 9/1
OFFSHORE: It’s still grouper heaven out here on both red grouper and their cousins the gags. It’s been a solid action here for a well over a year. Best keep to catch ration now on the Reds begins in about 7-8 feet of water and works west over hard bottom working live bait (pinfish, sand perch or grunt) tight to the bottom structure on a tide induced drift. The gags are a bit deeper and would recommend a start in 55-60′, again with a drift over hard bottom with the aforementioned baits. Deeper wrecks are still drawing the pelagics hanging around here with the massive bait schools. Look for kingfish and cobia in in particular on most of the major wreck structure. Kings will jump on a live blue runner soaking at about 15′ depth hooked up on wire and soaking in a good chum effort. The cobia, with their curiosity will come to visit you and show right on the surface and be a sucker for a threadfin herring sight cast right to it’s nose. Great fight.