January 15, 2010

The frigid cold from the past couple of weeks has finally left the Treasure Coast. In its wake, there are thousands of dead or cold stunned fish all over the river. We found lots of snook, snapper, lookdowns, ladyfish, tarpon, and many more species floating all around the area. It appears that the redfish, trout, black drum and sheephead were some of the few that survived the freezing water temperatures. It was a sad sight everywhere we went.

Steve and Kathleen joined me on Thursday for the first decent day to try and get out fishing. We found the best bite was around the inlet and turning basin. Lots of fish have congregated in the deeper water and they are hungry. Whiting, croakers, ladyfish and blue runners are abundant in those areas. Mackerel and bluefish are thick around the jetties. Live shrimp or shiny jigs were working for us. Steve ended up with a nice grouper from the seawall. Joe Vennarini joined me on Friday and we again found fish around the turning basin along with some sheephead and ladyfish around some of the docks. I did hear of a few trout being caught. Lots of sand perch are around the bridges, but many did not survive.

The water will slowly begin to warm back up and the bite should be fantastic very soon. The fish are cold right now and will be hungry as they get warmed back up to normal. If you do get out soon, look to the deep channels and cuts. Sea walls will be holding fish to try and get warm near them. Fish you lures and bait very slowly. The fish aren't as active and probably won't go far to chase a meal. Things will improve soon!

Tip of the Week:

It might be tempting to try and take some of the stunned fish home for dinner. I have heard of many people out doing just that. If the fish is in season, legal size and in your bag limits, it won't be a problem. Out of season fish, over/under size fish or over the limit will get you in lots of trouble out there. We witnessed many anglers being checked the past few days, so don't take the chance....it could cost you dearly!

Remember, fishing is not just another hobby....it's an ADVENTURE!

Good Fishing and Be Safe!
Captain Charlie Conner


A few of the fish found around the Treasure Coast.

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