Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Report, August 13, 2006
Mosquito Coast Fishing Charters
The dog days of summer have settled in along the Indian River Lagoon Coast of Florida, and fishing is still first rate as long as you donít mind the heat. Fish early in the day, late in the evening, at night, and drink lots of water. So far, thank goodness, Doctor Gray and all of the those fine scientist who make a living attempting to predict Mother Natureís fury have missed the boat, and our hurricane season is off to a slow start. Correspondingly, the lack of tropical squalls has extended the summer doldrums creating ideal sea conditions for fishing along the beaches and further offshore.
Fishing near-shore alone the beach this week has been exceptional, as long as can find warmer water temperatures and bait concentrations. The coldwater Labrador Current has arrived dropping surface water temperatures into the 70-degree range, so keep moving until you find fish. Several areas reporting good catches this week were along the beach south of Patrick AFB, near the shoals north of buoys 2 and 4 out of Port Canaveral, and outside of Ponce De Leon Inlet, and the primary species taken have been kingfish, cobia, large jacks, sharks, and bonito.
Most anglers have been slow trolling live pogies (Atlantic menhaden), greenies (tread fin herring), and cigar minnows (Spanish Sardines). To catch live bait, look for bait flipping and birds diving in shallow water, and use a cast net. In deeper water and around the buoys, try jigging with a sabiki rig in visible bait pods. It is also important to keep your bait lively, so an adequate bait storage system will improve your results. Although live bait is preferred, paddlers trolling swimming plugs just outside the surf line have boated some quality kingfish this week, from a yak nonetheless!
Inside the Lagoon, water levels are extremely low. In many areas, heavy floating weed mat has made a top water presentation frustrating, but thatís not to say that the top water action is not good, it just requires some patience.
The hot bite this week has been the schools of ladyfish and jacks pounding schools of glass minnows (bay anchovies) out in deeper water. All you need to do is look for birds diving and dipping for bait, and target those areas. Once youíve located the frenzy, throw small top-water plugs like the Storm Chug Bug or Rapala Twitching Shad, and hold on. If fly-fishing is your gig, any top-water popping bug will produce fast and furious action. Additionally, sea trout are always present underneath these schools of bait, so a jig with a shrimp or mullet imitation bait like the RipTide Realistic Shrimp or Swimmin Mullet with a Woodies Rattle capsule inserted will produce results equally as well.
With the low water levels, redfish have moved into the deeper pockets on and around the flats, and they are super spooky, so your best results will come in the early morning and late evening. Targeting them has been similar to winter pattern, where you find fish in concentrated area. Additionally, look for schools along the deeper edges of exposed shoals.
Last but not least, if you would like to introduce a child to fishing, or maybe just improve their skills, Coastal Angler Magazineís Hook Kids on Fishing program will be conducting a free kids fishing clinic, on Saturday August 26th from 9 to 11am at Kelly Park on Merritt Island. This program is conducted with the support of lagoon volunteers, and sponsored by Bass Pro Shops and the Florida Guides Association. All kids must be accompanied by an adult, and if you need more information, visit the CAM website at www.coastalanglermagazine.com
, or contact me and I will hook you up.
As always, if you have any questions or need information, please contact me.
Good luck and good fishing,
Captain Tom Van Horn
407-416-1187 on the water
866-790-8081 toll free