The mullet and other baitfish have been returning to the Lagoons of east central Florida in full force. With the influx of food, the predator fish are feeding aggressively. Seatrout have become more plentiful and active and the redfish have begun feeding on the mullet as well. With the water temperatures now in the mid 80's, the tarpon will begin to return and I saw the first one of the year this week. The giant redfish are schooling and we have encountered fish over 30 pounds recently.
In the last week of April, I had Jim and Doug on board for an instructional charter. Faced with some windy conditions, casting was tough but we encountered numerous tailing redfish. Jim used a three inch DOA CAL bait in Arkansas Glow to fool a couple redfish.
The following day, the winds had died down and I went exploring some different areas with Capt. Drew. We caught both redfish and trout on DOA shrimp and CAL's.
By Friday, the wind was blowing hard again. Bob and Ricky had shots at numerous redfish during the day but landed only one.
Saturday and Sunday, I fished with David and his son Zach. We spent the first day trying to avoid the crowd from the tournament boats in the area. Zach's first redfish ever was a twenty pound bull.
He also caught several seatrout with the largest around seven pounds.
The following day was much less crowded and we had plenty of room to sight fish the flats. Zach landed four redfish to thirty inches.
We spent the last hour casting to a school of redfish over twenty pounds but could not convince them to eat our offerings.
Mike and Danny fished with me on Tuesday of last week. We sight fished for redfish for a while getting shots at singles and small groups. We then moved out to the edges of the flats and I tied on some DOA Deadly Combos. Both guys caught some nice trout until they were tired of reeling them in. We decided to give the redfish another shot. Danny ended the day with an eighteen pound red.
This Saturday, British anglers Chris and Dave joined me in Mosquito Lagoon. We began the day targeting a school of large redfish. Dave hooked one that made several drag screaming runs before it was cut off by another fish in the school. We had several more shots at them but could not get them to eat. Our second stop revealed some big schools of redfish in shallow water. Chris quickly hooked up and landed one before some inconsiderate anglers surrounded our boat and chased the fish away.
We tried some trout fishing in deeper water. While a few were caught, and a few got away, we could not hit the magic spot. Chris landed one more redfish before we headed back to the ramp.
I look forward to some great fishing in the next few weeks. With all the baitfish around, the jacks, ladyfish, and tarpon will soon be arriving. The topwater bite is improving each day, especially early in the day.
Capt. Chris MyersOrlando Fishing Guide