Now comes April. Is it our favorite fishing month of the year? If not, it certainly makes the short list of the very best months. In April all things angling are possible because fish populations are migrating in and out of our area, and staging locally to spawn.

In the last week the number of Sailfish has increased dramatically and for the first time since early Jan we are actually targeting them specifically and catching them on a daily basis. Cobia too has been part of our recent catches and this too is a sign of the spring season. Look for color changes outside the reef edge in depths from 100’ to 250’. Small boats can fish effectively by drifting these areas with live baits. Fish a couple of baits as flat lines on the up wind side of the boat and deploy a kite on the downwind side. Kite fishing is NOT particularly complicated, and the month of April is an ideal time to gear up and master this technique. In addition to the top water baits you can always put a leaded bait down and expect action from late season Kings and Mutton Snapper.

April is also the month that features dramatic color changes with the associated “tailing” condition. East to North East wind blowing against a strong east current with a falling tide and or dirty inshore water butted up against blue Gulf Stream water creates this condition and the results can be dramatic. In a cloudless sky with high sun, on the right day you will see hundreds of fish from Bonita to Blackfin Tuna to Cobia, to Dolphin to Sailfish, even the occasional Swordfish, Blue Marlin and Mako Shark. Last year we saw a Bluefin Tuna of 500-600 pounds, 20 pound spinning tackle never seemed so puny!

April is still a little early for dependable deep water forays in search of Dolphin but if the weather is calm and there is nothing going on inshore it can be worth a look.

On the reef edge Yellowtail snapper are getting ready to spawn and are congregating in various spots. Choose your favorite Yellowtail spot on a day when the condition is right- a decent flow of current behind the boat and off color water. If you don’t have current don’t try to Yellowtail, save it for a day when it’s right. Enjoy the month’s fishing opportunities! Tight lines and good luck.

Capt. Brad Simonds