The first week of March finds us between seasons with very little good fishing to report. Our winter action which consisted of Sailfish, Tuna, King Mackerel, and Cero is about over, but spring action has not yet begun. Water quality along the reef edge and beyond has frequently been poor this winter. As an example of what I’m talking about, consider what I found on a recent trip just offshore of the reef edge. The water was a dull dark green. There was a lot of scattered weed, not the kind that holds fish, but rather the stuff that makes it hard to keep your lines clear. When we anchored down we found that what little current there was, trickling up under the boat, into the wind. That’s a tough condition; no life on the surface, hard to make a Snapper drift, and too weedy to troll. On that particular day we did manage to bend the rod on “snake” King Mackerel, Little Tunny and a few large Blue Runners. The several snapper we hooked were all eaten by sharks before we could get them to the boat.

On days when we have the time and decent weather, we’ve had success making longer runs to areas less heavily fished. With south wind, we’ve run up into the gulf and had some good kingfish action with fish averaging 20 lbs. We’ve also hit various rock piles in the gulf for a mix of Lane, Yellowtail, and Grey Snapper as well as throw back Grouper. A good thing to remember is that just as the Southside patches can provide calmer water on a north wind, so too can the gulf areas provide calmer conditions on the south wind.

The reef edge west of “the end of the bar” has yielded some decent catches providing there is current to move the chum. Big Yellowtail, Mutton Snapper, and legal size but out of season Grouper are all available. Amberjacks are congregating on the wrecks in advance of their spring spawn. Offshore remains spotty, you might find a few Dolphin and the occasional Wahoo or you might not.

Good Luck and tight lines,

Capt. Brad