Seasonal reminder: Remember, shook season is closed to harvest along Florida's Atlantic Coast until Feb. 1 2021; spotted sea trout is closed to harvest until Dec. 31; shallow water grouper season will close Jan. 1 until April 30, 2021; and new flounder rules will go into effect March 1 creating a fall harvest closure from Oct. 15 through Nov 30. He is using live shrimp or cut mullet to catch the drum, fishing near channel edges and drop-offs.
Terry Wilda of Big Easy charters out of Capt Hiram's Resort and Marina in Sebastian said the fishing on the reefs this week was wonderful. His anglers caught king fish, trigger fish and mangrove snapper in 70-90 feet of water.
Melbourne Beach has been a good place to get bites from pompano, whiting and croaked during the last half of the incoming tide. Spoons fished here will catch Spanish mackerel, bluefish, jacks and blue runners, too.
Bluefish, lady fish, jacks, blue runners and Spanish mackerel are being caught on spoons and jigs. Pompano are along the beaches on both sides of the inlet taking Fish bites or sand fleas.
Inside the inlet, flounder can be caught on sliding sinker rigs with live mud minnows or shrimp. Then, as the temperature climbs above 72 degrees in the water, their feeding response turns back on again.
Trout and redfish will be on the flats during the middle parts of the day as the fish warm up. Cast into holes or channels and cuts to find fish which are seeking more stable water temperatures on cool days.
Crappie action is pretty good in most other lakes and in parts of the St. Johns River and canals. Florida's first cold snap of the 2020-2021 winter season was welcomed he artfully by all.
We had to break out socks with our flip-flops, find a pair of pants that fit our COVID-expanded waistlines and dig out that old food-stained sweatshirt from our favorite college. The good news is the cold air brought with it fish from the north.
Bluefish, Spanish mackerel, pompano, whiting, sailfish and flounder have all made appearances in greater numbers. Jon Lula of Mosquito Lagoon Redfish Charters in Titusville said he has been fishing cut bait with anglers and having good success.
Lula said cool mornings will help the water clear up and improve chances to sight cast. Marine weather forecast conditions indicate anglers can probably find bites in 70-100 feet without too much trouble.
To increase one's chances at a Yahoo bite, put it down in the water column using a down planer or trolling sinker. Pompano, whiting, croaked, bluefish, Spanish mackerel and more can be caught from this zone right now.
Spots around Merritt Island, Satellite Beach, Titusville and Cocoa had small fish of all different species dying in the shallows. Redfish and trout are biting around the mangroves and spoil islands from Grant to Wabash.
Running up to the Home Sound area from Jupiter to avoid the sharks, Capt. Bill Taylor of Black Dog Fishing Charter has been getting good numbers of mangrove, yellowtail and a few short buttons in 40 to 60 feet of water using mostly thread fin herring and squid.
There is still a decent sailfish bite off of Jupiter and people fishing for them are also getting good numbers of dolphin as by catch. Working very specific depths from 100 to 115 feet, kings up to 15 pounds have been caught from the Boston Inlet and then following as they move south.
The sailfish bite is still holding steady off of the Boston area with many boats having several releases per trip. They are hitting goggle eyes, blue runners and pilchards on kites in 100 to 150 feet.
There have also been red grouper caught in the same depths using cut or whole squid on the bottom or slow pitching jigs. On the inside edge of the reefs off of Boston, lesser amber jacks, some keeper gray trigger fish, yellowtail and mangrove snapper are being caught.
Though the season is closed until Feb. 1, the bite for shook in the St. Lucie River has been excellent recently. Around the bridges spanning the St. Lucie and Indian Rivers there has been good action for black drum, pompano and bluefish.
In the Intracoastal Waterway in the channels a quarter mile north and south of the Boston Inlet, there has been an excellent bite for jack crevasse, lady fish, bluefish and some nice mangrove and mutton snapper. Also in the Ice, on the east side from the Santana Bridge up to the Shook Islands, there has been good action for sea trout and a few slot-size redfish.
He has been using cut mullet since pinkish have been scarce, and it's working fine for the drum. In some cases, schools of black drum can be found and sight cast to.
Sea conditions may be a little sporty until Sunday, so use caution and check the latest weather advisories before leaving port. Grouper season will close Jan. 1, but snapper fishing should be steady in 70-90 feet of water.
Porgies and trigger fish, sharp nose sharks and occasional cobra should also make trips to the reefs worthwhile. Croaked, whiting, bluefish and Spanish mackerel are other catches anglers can expect at the beach right now.
The flounder are inside along the sides of the inlet, and they are taking live mud minnows and mullet on sliding sinker rigs. In other areas, such as the western shoreline of the lagoon, and spots around the causeways, fishing is steady.
Sleepyhead are biting around bridge pilings and docks, seawalls and rocky shorelines. Bass fishing has been pretty solid with big fish being caught in the Indian River County lakes, Lake Washington and some parts of the St. Johns River.