Well here we are almost to the end of the month and we are starting to warm things up some. There was a few days there where it was cold. Just not right for central Florida to say the least. Just not right at all. Now with air temperatures climbing back into the 60's and hopefully reaching a prime of the upper 70's not too far out this will continue to bring the water temperature up along with it. At least here in Florida more than the rest of the upper states it is really turning out to be just drop dead beautiful outside. A day here or there with winds and a few clouds, but that sun, that beautiful sun and the bright light it brings with it for sight fishing is just awesome. It will not be much longer until we are in the warm summer months and the great fishing that Florida brings during those times. The good things of cobia running the beaches, tarpon showing up at the inlets, back to shorts and flip flops and the feel of summer time in the air. Bring it. Next thing you know the A/C will be back on for a change of pace.
Now the fishing the past several weeks here on the Mosquito Lagoon and along the Indian River from the New Smyrna Beach shallow flats area down to the Titusville back country waters has been great on days the weather and the winds allow you to get out and do some sight fishing the flats. A couple of days there it started out cold in the morning but with the sun rising high in the sky allowed for great days to be out on the water fishing and just soaking it in. Dealing with a bad day or two here and there is just part of the package. It is like living any where else, you just come to expect it, get used to it and prepare for it.
Redfish, black drum and a few trout have been the catch of the day the past several weeks. The redfish are being caught on the flats using a few different methods. As always during this time of the year one method for targeting them is fly fishing. It is at a prime for this. Using shrimp or crab patterns as the waters on the Mosquito Lagoon are gin clear and the fish are feeding on the baits buried down in the bottom. With the clear waters sight fishing is just by far the best way to target these shallow water creatures. Other methods and baits that have produced good numbers here lately are a live shrimp thrown to a feeding fish on a 3/0 hook, the D.O.A. 1/4 oz. shrimps in several different colors, and the D.O.A. C.A.L.s with a small weighted weed less hook. The fish are caught and seen tailing the early hours and through out most of the day feeding in shallow warming waters. Grass flats and white sand holes seem to be areas where they are hanging out the most. Schools of them are cruising the waters in great numbers as well. As always a good stealthy approach to them is your best tactical game plan. Remember to handle them gently for a clean release.
Trout and black drum are also being caught along with a few flounder as well. The trout seem to be fine tuned as to the approaching boats and are as always more challenging to get on the flats sight fishing them. Apex predator for sure of the shallow waters. However they are eager to eat the same baits the redfish want, so use the same approach methods for them as well. Just take your time. Black drum are being pressured very heavily the past several weeks and seem to be evolving to the intense fishing for them. Using small hooks and bits of shrimp or smaller plastics will be your best bet. You must approach them with ease and stealth. A soft presentation will be required for all of the above. Remember to handle all of them with extreme care for the release. Also please be sure to keep in mind your fellow anglers around you at all times and try to anticipate their moves as well. Give every one wide open spaces and keep a good distances at all times if you can. This goes a long way for a better overall experience for everyone.
Captain Drew Cavanaugh
Florida Inshore Fishing Charters
Light tackle fishing guide on the Mosquito Lagoon
Orlando Redfish Charters