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Fishing Forecast

Posted on by Captain Steve

With winds from the east this Holiday weekend, my fishing forecast if for Mahi- mahi or Dolphin, if you prefer.

I had to look up Mahi-mahi to see where it came from in the Hawaiian language. Mahi means strong, Mahi-mahi means very strong. Who knew? I didn’t

When the winds blow from the east this time of year, the flotsam and seaweed get blown toward shore. It’s these kind of things we look for when hunting Dolphin. Anything floating on the surface gives shade and cover to small bait fish and even schoolie Dolphin. And with winds forecast for the next three days, all this will be coming toward shore.

Mahi’s strike with force, no matter their size. Many times you can see them streaking toward your bait. Sometimes on the surface pulling a head wake, sometimes jumping as they approach. When they bite, they almost always jump, the first place that these fish are easily lost. You can’t get caught up in the moment, you must remain tight with the fish.

The second quick loss place is by the boat. Yes, they are tired but remember their name. You might think they are whipped but they will surprise you and give a few more jumps trying to elude capture.

Once you do have the fish in the boat, keep him there. Small fish boxes on the transom or even on deck, these fish can leap from the boat back into the water and be gone. Talk about a heart breaker…

So this fishing forecast for the next few days is looking for Mahi-mahi. Unfortunately, everyone else will be looking too. LOL

Capt. Steve

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Fort Lauderdale Shark Fishing

Posted on by Captain Steve

Lately Fort Lauderdale shark fishing has been very productive. It’s a bit late but the mating season is still going on and our area is a breeding ground for many species of sharks.

Sandbar sharks, often mistaken for Bull sharks, are quite prevalent right now. Found in shallow water, usually around wrecks, they are quite ready for an easy meal as we present it. While fishing for these, we often put out a bottom rod for snapper and grouper if they are around.

Other species are here as well. Tiger, Bull and some rare Hammerhead sharks are also making appearances. A Hammerhead it what is pictured above. These fish give quite the fight! With that big flat wing on their head, all they need to do is get their head down and kick with their tail a few times. Their power just peels the line off the reel.

Even the species of Hammerhead has a few varieties. The Scalloped, Smoothskin and Great Hammerheads are being seen. The4se fish are usually caught in deeper water but can be found anywhere at any time.

So if you’re looking to catch a BIG fish, Fort Lauderdale shark fishing is filling that bill. Hope to see you soon.

Capt. Steve

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Go Fish Fort Lauderdale

Posted on by Captain Steve

The time is right to go fish Fort Lauderdale. Our weather has been perfect. Light winds, calm seas and sunny skies… Just what Fort Lauderdale is known for.

And the fishing has been great! Plenty of action just a few miles from shore. Kings and Bonito are abundant. Blackfin Tuna and the occasional Dolphin bless our lines. Even Sailfish are being seen and caught as we troll the reef areas and just a bit outside that.

Each year I see the trend change a bit. What should be here thick as thieves isn’t always the case. But with one species not making an appearance, another does. And let’s not forget that there is always that chance for a lost Swordfish or Marlin in close to shore.

One thing that hasn’t changed is the smile of a newbie catching their first fish. Size, species, color and everything else goes right out the window as they land and sometimes hold that prize.

The young lady in the picture was not squeamish about holding her catch. The “ewww” factor went right out the window as she posed with her prize. This is the one thing I hope never changes.

The time is right… Go fish Fort Lauderdale… You won’t be disappointed.

Capt. Steve

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Good Fishing Action

Posted on by Captain Steve

Today our group wanted action… Good fishing action. While they would love to catch some Mahi, they all knew fishing doesn’t always give you what you want. So something to bend the rod was the request for their trip. And the fish gods were kind to these folks.

We began just outside the port. The mate and I were starting to worry, we’d missed the first few bites and other boats were catching. We finally managed to hold onto a fish and get him into the boat. Bonito! And the crowd cheered… LOL

As we continued, apparently, we just needed that one to begin catching and as we did our best to avoid the seaweed that seemed to be everywhere, we ended with a nice catch of Kings and Bonitos. Our only Tuna bite escaped a few feet from the boat.

Since we had provided some action for our group, we decided to venture out a bit and see if any Mahi’s were around. I had heard nothing on the radio as far as Dolphin but love fishing the deeper waters… You just never know what might appear.

Again weed played a part in out fishing. Some areas were almost impossible to keep the baits clear. After finally find some clear water with big patches, we got our first bite. A Mahi was jumping, though be it small, it felt like a moral victory and turned out to be a keeper.

Our next fish was returned coming up short on the requirement and we went for quite some time before our next bite. With only minutes left in our trip we managed a few more fish for the box.

Good fishing action makes for some happy campers seen here.

Capt. Steve

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Fishing With Large Groups

Posted on by Captain Steve

Fishing with a large group like Corporate outings, bachelor parties and family outings, just to name a few, any group over 6 is a large group. You have two options, either charter enough 6 passenger boats for your group or put your entire group on one boat. We can do either and today’s group opted for 6 boats to accommodate everyone.

Today’s forecast was for 50% rain… It drizzled for about 5 minutes. But it didn’t dampen the groups spirit or their fishing.

You see, fish kind of like overcast skies. They can swim up near and on the surface of the water without casting a shadow. Today was no different, all the boats did well in the reef area with Kingfish, Bonito and Tuna. Bonito and Tuna are in the same family and occasionally school together.

Along with the bounty of fish providing plenty of action, a Sailfish decided to join the fray on our boat. Having a line come down, screaming line off and then seeing this large fish jumping behind the boat still thrills me, even after all these years.

A 20-minute battle is the norm and boating the fish has to be done carefully. We prefer to release these fish so we take care in handling them. A hose with running saltwater on board helps them breath as we take measurements and pictures. And, of course, that last picture before the fish is placed back in the water for release.

Sometimes we must coach them along, holding beside the boat helping them rest while they breath in the water for oxygen. Others you can barely get them back in the water before they bolt. It is an awesome feeling watching your fish swim away, if he gives you the chance.

Whether you want everyone on the same boat or multiple boats to cover your group, fishing with large groups is best back at the dock. Bragging rights and all.

Capt. Steve

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Barracuda

Posted on by Captain Steve

In my last fishing report I mentioned reeling fast to land the fish, the ENTIRE fish. One reason is the Greater Barracuda as seen here in this picture.

Barracuda are fairly prominent in our area, although recently laws have been passed to limit the size and number that can be taken. They like rock piles, reef areas and wrecks for their habitat. It offers them protection from larger predators as well as providing a great place to catch smaller fish that find the same attributes of protection of structures.

Barracudas are known for their speed and agility to chase down fish. They prefer fish that have been injured or struggling… say on the end of a fishing line?

A heart-breaking story from a few years ago… We were fishing for bait at the sea buoy on very light tackle. One customer hooked a large Blackfin Tuna on the 8 lbs. test line and a battle began. He fought this fish for over 30 minutes. We were getting close… The Tuna was doing his spin, they swim sideways when tired, in small circles. We could see the fish down 30’, then 20’ and then…

Mr. Barracuda comes along and bites off his tail! Now, without the fish able to swim, he is just dead weight at the end of the line. Our angler can barely gain line but is doing a great job with what he has. Another strike has the Cuda eat the mid-section… Still a good chunk of meat there but getting smaller.

It was that last bite, the one right behind the head that broke our hearts. We boated the head that remained and could see the Barracuda just lazing around below the boat, probably too full to swim much as we estimated the Tuna between 25 and 30 lbs.

Many times this story has been repeated by fishermen all over the world. But this is the one I remember like it was yesterday.

Capt. Steve

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The Catching Is Great

Posted on by Captain Steve

The goal in fishing is to entice a fish to eat your bait, fight that fish and land it. That’s called a catch. Right now, the catching is GREAT off the shore of Fort Lauderdale.

Within just 2 miles from shore our boat is giving the guests plenty of fish to fight. Starting with small bait fish, up to those Kings, Bonitos and Tunas and then on to some larger predators. Truth be told, you’d better land your fish quickly or you may not get the entire fish. While it is disappointing to lose some of your fish, there is that “WOW” factor as we wonder what it was that ate it.

Trolling has been the main stay lately. Cover some ground and see what pops up. Those Kings, Bonitos and Tunas I spoke of have been ranging from 6 to 20 lbs. and even bigger. The occasional Sailfish or Mahi is also possible. We expect this to continue into and through the summer.

While on the charter boat the mates go to extremes rigging baits to entice that bite, even the drift boat has been reaping the rewards. Just the standard 3 hook rig with a Sardine or Ballyhoo on it produced the catch in the picture above. And that is just the fish that were boated. Some do escape at any point between that initial bite and reaching the boat. Or they are taken from you by that predator laying in wait.

So, whether it is sport fishing or drift fishing, the catching is great! I guess that makes the fishing even better…

Capt. Steve

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Father’s Day Fishing Trip

Posted on by Captain Steve

fahter's day

You know, Dad likes to fish anytime, not just on Father’s Day. However, the Father’s Day fishing trip always has us busy and this year is no exception.

We had a great family on board and when asked what they would like to catch? Just put us on some fish was the answer… My favorite answer to this question. But today we struggled at first with this somewhat easy task.

The radio for the fleet was reporting plenty of Kings and Bonito in the area. And yet, it had been over an hour of fishing and we still had nothing in our box. We’ve had the hits but missed every fish. It seemed an eternity before we finally stayed connected and just catching one King gave me hope our drought was over.

Now some folks like Kingfish, others aren’t too fond of them. Our group could take or leave them so after boating 6 or so, we opted for some off shore Dolphin fishing.

In order to catch Dolphin, you must find something to fish to. Plenty of seaweed has been around and with it being Father’s day, plenty of boats were out too. We got to the pretty blue water and began our search. Scattered grass and some big patches of weed were in our area. Little Bar Jacks that hide beneath the weed were also present. And finally, a Mahi! Easily too small to keep as was the second.

But we continued and finally began catching some we could keep. No real big ones but the action was consistent as 1 after another made it into our box. They weren’t together, just coming one at a time.  And being about 7 miles from shore, our time had come to go home.

In the end, we had 6 Kings, 8 keeper Dolphin, we had released some 15 Jacks and probably almost as many small Mahis. But our group was quite pleased with the Father’s day fishing trip.

Remember, dad will go fishing anytime! LOL

Captain Steve

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The Bite Is On

Posted on by Captain Steve

3 hour sail

If you are looking for fish to bend the rod, you should be fishing right now! The bite is on here in south Florida. Mahi-mahi, Tuna, Kingfish and others are bending our rods with frequency. And all this action has been within a few miles of shore.

 

While I try to spin whatever we’re catching into good news, I don’t have to work at it this month. The picture above is from our Southwest Airline group. Each year they come for their annual get together and always need fish for their fish fry on the last evening. They won’t go hungry this year, that’s for sure.

 

Kings and Bonitos, along with some Tuna are mixed in the reef area. Depending on the water color, Mahi-mahi and Wahoo may also be there. But that’s not all we’ve been getting. A few sharks and Sails have been mixed in as well. Most of these fish are being caught trolling.

 

And after all the time I’ve been doing this, I still get a thrill when someone catches a Sail and says they can scratch that off their bucket list. It just makes me smile as it did with this gentleman and his prize.

If you are looking for action, for edible fish or just to bend the rod, now is the time. The bite is on!

 

Captain Steve

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Springtime Fishing Begins

Posted on by Captain Steve

tuna topia

While some of you are living where the weather has been unseasonable, here in south Florida our springtime fishing started about a week ago. And our all day trip today was proof positive of this.

 

Our 3 guests had but one day before heading to Bolivia. They are volunteering to help build churches in areas that cannot afford them. Certainly a noble cause and perhaps even lending to a fun, fish filled day.

 

With the forecast of rain, we opted to catch our own bait. Chum and the usual areas were not providing so our trolling gear was deployed. It took maybe 20 minutes for our first bite and the action was near nonstop the rest of the day.

 

First were the Kingfish in the reef area. Bites were coming one or two at a time. While our guests had never used this kind of tackle before, they adapted quickly and soon were beating Dom to the rod when a bite came. They were having so much fun, even after the 2 per person limit was reached, we continued catch and release for a while before venturing just a bit further off shore.

 

The top picture is Dom holding a Yellowfin Tuna. This small Tuna was schooling with the Blackfin Tuna. We had stumbled into Tuna Topia and some nice sized fish were biting. Yellowfin are rare in our area and we ended up with 2 along with a hoard of Blackfin.

 

We took a break from this action to put the boys on something bigger. The Amberjacks cooperated nicely for this purpose and the guys enjoyed posing with their catches before releasing those back to the sea.

Our troll home was still producing more Tuna but these were considerably smaller than the ones from earlier. We had plenty and were releasing them as we went until the time came to return to the dock.

 

This is the kind of action you expect from springtime fishing. I look forward to fishing again today.

 

Captain Steve

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