Posts Tagged "Fishing"

Fishing Fort Lauderdale

Posted on by Captain Steve

If you are fishing Fort Lauderdale, you will notice it is not very crowded out on the ocean. This is our slow time of year business wise. People are more concerned about getting back into the routine of the kids back in school than a vacation in our little paradise down here.

I sometimes wonder if the fish know it is slow for business. They seem to bite better when we are not out there. LOL They cannot possibly know this, can they?

Decent sized Mahi, Tuna and soon, Wahoo, are around. October is one of our best times of year for some nice sized Wahoo as well as other species. But with few trips, we don’t get the chance to be out there fishing for them.

Throughout the year, our guests come aboard and exclaim what a great we, as in the crew, have. And it is true! We DO have great jobs. After all, we get to go fishing each day. But this is the time of year that we fix, repair and paint the boats so they are nice and pretty when you come down for your vacation.

2 things are unfortunate about doing this type of work in September and October. It is very hot and during some days it rains at least once a day.

All in all, if you are not out there fishing right now, you are missing some great fish. Things are going to improve in the next few weeks as well so if your schedule allows it? Make the time. It is a great time of year for fishing Fort Lauderdale.

Capt. Steve

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Tiger Shark Makes The Day

Posted on by Captain Steve

With the kids back in school, at least here. Fort Lauderdale, we enter our slow down season. That’s as far as the business end of things, the fishing still goes on. LOL

Kingfish and Bonitos are being caught in the area of the reef close to shore. Trolling has been the best way to catch them and a few have been on the large size. Very unusual for this time of year. We will continue to catch Bonitos for a bit longer and as always, Tuna can be mixed in with those schools

But as we enter September and October, things begin to change. Tuna and Wahoo become much more frequent and the big bomber Bonitos leave us. Their offspring becoming our bullets or baby Bonitos and an excellent type of live bait. These baits will attract large Wahoo, Kings and Sailfish in just a few weeks.

Bottom fishing has been good with the deep wrecks and reefs providing us with some nice snappers of various types. The drift boat has been doing well on the anchor trip which targets these species.

But what has been very unusual time of year has been some of the exotic sharks being caught. While summertime usually leaves us with Bull and Sandbar sharks, Threshers and even a big Tiger shark have been caught.

Tiger sharks have a nasty disposition and are never docile when next to the boat, so getting a good picture of them can be tough. In the picture I posted, you can see the spots very faintly. This fish was tired after the battle and they lose their color in that state. When excited or fresh, these spots are much brighter and more predominant. I won’t begin the discussion of why these weren’t called Leopard sharks… LOL

Anyway, that’s been our fishing here off the coast of Fort Lauderdale. Wahoo, Tuna and soon Mahi-mahi are all coming soon. Hope to see you…

Capt. Steve

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Fort Lauderdale Fishing Report

Posted on by Captain Steve

We are about to enter August, one of the hottest times of year down here in south Florida. Although the Fort Lauderdale fishing report would tell you June and July were not exactly cool.

With sea temperatures in the mid to high 80’s and the air in the low to mid 90’s, that sea breeze that comes up around 11 am or so is very welcome. Many places that are sweltering through the Midwest and up north don’t get that relief.

With the higher sea temperatures, the fish prefer to be deeper in the water column. Just 5’ down changes the temperature by a few degrees. Get down 40-50’ and the temperature drops considerably more. The pelagic fish that migrate by our coast, like Kings, Bonitos, Tuna and Wahoo, prefer the cooler, deeper water. The early morning and late afternoon can produce bites from these fish on the surface. But mid-day, the bite is usually on the deep lines.

With that said, both the sport and drift fishing boats have been doing well with fishing the bottom for snappers, groupers, Amberjacks and other deep-water fish. Vermilion, Mutton and Yellowtail can be caught day or night. Mangrove prefer the evening and night bite.

Today’s photo is a friend of mine. I had no idea she was fishing on one of the boats. She is always animated and very excited at anything new. Catching this Vermilion snapper was her first! I received a text and picture immediately.

Vermilion snappers don’t get very big but when you do catch them, they usually come up 2 or 3 at a time. And they are quite tasty!

Well that’s my Fort Lauderdale fishing report for this week. Just know we are catching fish and having a great time doing it.

Capt. Steve

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Kid Friendly Fishing

Posted on by Captain Steve

I am often asked about kid friendly fishing trips. We do mention kid friendly fishing trips on our website but it’s not a special trip at a certain time… The fact is if kids on board, we’re friendly. Even with adults, we’re friendly.

We can custom tailor a fishing trip that fits the children’s age. In some cases, when the child is very young, say 3-6 years old, we may spend some catching smaller baitfish. The bite is usually fast and furious and the kids like the action. The rods are smaller too making it easier to handle. Well, not much fits in a 3 year old’s hands, but they can do it with help.

Once they get to 7 or 8, up to about 12 or so, they have come into their own some. They get excited at almost any fish. Each one is bigger than his or hers, and I can see we’re on our way to a true fisher person.

As a matter of fact, today’s picture he’s to with one of those kid friendly fishing trips. It was this young man’s birthday. He very much wanted to catch a BIG fish. A big Barracuda was what he really wanted. Those teeth and all…

We started by catching baitfish. Bend the rod so to speak. After catch a few baits, we began trolling. A few Kings and… a Barracuda! But that one was kind of small and he wanted something bigger. 

So we pulled our gear and ran to a wreck. Time to see if something live could coax a larger fish of some kind. 

Birthday luck is a powerful thing. The bait wasn’t 10’ from the boat when this big Barracuda came and ate it. It missed the hook both the first and second time but we got him that third time. Our young angler fought that Cuda for about 15 minutes. Every time we got him to the boat, he’d take off 50-100’ of line. Finally tired, both angler and fish, we were able to boat, photograph and measure the fish. We had one very happy birthday boy. 

So no matter how old the kids are, we have a kid friendly fishing trip for them. We will even be nice to the parents too. 

Capt. Steve

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Summer Snapper

Posted on by Captain Steve

Now that the 4th of July has passed and my dog is out from under the bed, it’s time for summer snapper. While we fish for them the entire year-round, this time of year off Fort Lauderdale is when you can reap a nice harvest!

On the sport fishing boats, trolling is still a mainstay in catching fish. Kings and Bonitos are in the reef area as well as the occasional Sailfish or Tuna. But when it comes time to put some big baits out, the bottom, or entertainment rod as we call it, also comes out. We will concentrate our efforts in areas that snapper inhabit, and many times end up with our limit. Vermilions and Yelloweyes are found in deeper waters. Yellowtails and Muttons are found on the shallow wrecks.

On the drift boat it all depends on the conditions. Fast moving current can move the boat across a spot quickly. Too quickly for the smaller spots. This forces the boats into shallow waters and Lane snappers along with the occasional Yellowtail or Mutton are also caught.

But if the current is not too strong, the deeper spots come into play. The picture above is a recent day on our drift fishing boat, the Lois Ann. Conditions were great for this spot and some nice sized Vermilions were taken. While the bite and conditions change day to day, you can see things can get pretty busy.

So if you live in the area or are planning a trip to Fort Lauderdale soon, get out there and get some of these summer snapper. You just never know what else might come on your line…

Capt. Steve

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Sailfish Season

Posted on by Captain Steve

We are often asked “when is Sailfish season” by customers calling to book. While there are certain months that are better than others, we can catch Sailfish at any time of the year here off Fort Lauderdale.

In the summer months, we spend much of our time trolling. Tuna, Kingfish, Bonito, Dolphin and Wahoo are our main targets. But other species will eat our trolling baits aas well.

When we have had lots of rain, as we have recently, most of those bites come from our deep lines. Anywhere from 30 to 50’ below the surface seems to be the right depth. Catching a Sailfish on the deeper baits does rob you of some of the thrill.

But when they strike a surface bait? That’s my favorite, though I often miss those with my eyes. I do have to look forward occasionally. LOL You know, other boats and things like that.

The great thing about the surface bite is the attack. Some Sailfish strike with a vengeance, they just pile on. Others are more cautious, stalking behind the bait, watching and waiting for an opportunity to strike. When they decide, their bill comes up and they begin slashing at the bait.

Strip baits work well, with some artificial bling in front of them. Sailfish will come back time and again, maybe8 or 10 times if you are lucky. But each time, they stretch the strip bait to a point it’s too long. Better hook them before that!

The most attractive trolling bait is rigged Ballyhoo. But you only get a few shots before the bait is decimated from the attack.

So keep your eyes peeled out the back. You aren’t driving… And maybe Sailfish season will come for you in the middle of summer.

Capt. Steve

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Daily Fishing Trips

Posted on by Captain Steve

The moon phase can play a part on our daily fishing trips. Certain times of the month affects different species different ways. But my favorite phase is just after the full moon or backside as we call it. That’s the time for Wahoo.

April and October are generally the best months for these fish but we do catch them year round. Most are caught with the trolling rigs we use every day and Wahoo certainly aren’t limited to just those few days. They can hit at any time… The fact that this report has a picture of a Wahoo that was caught just 2 days after the full moon could be coincidence… Or it could have been this young angler’s birthday luck that produced this fine fish. It was caught early in the trip as soon as we started to fish.

The bite on the troll slowed a bit this past week. The full moon will do that sometimes. So the drift and sport boats have been doing some bottom fishing. Vermillion snapper have been biting on the deeper spots. Yellowtails and Mangroves have been biting on the anchor trip and some nice sized ones too.

Dolphin have been quite a ways off shore. You definitely need more than a 4-hour trip to reach them. Patience and tenacity are also needed. The best indicator are the birds working the water. With all the weed, there’s just not enough time in a day to hit all the patches.

If you plan on taking one of our daily fishing trips, bring plenty of water. A smile and positive attitude helps as well.

Capt. Steve

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Father’s Day Fishing

Posted on by Captain Steve

So, what’s the deal? Is Father’s Day fishing the only day dad can get out on the water and catch a few? LOL While it is generally about dad, this year’s Father’s Day fishing was also about some young sons. Even a few daughters.

We were very busy over the weekend even though the forecast was kind of gloomy. But the attitude seemed to be that since the fish were already wet, why not…

The fishing has been pretty good, and it didn’t fail us Father’s Day weekend. Kingfish and Bonitos have been providing good action on both the drift and sport fishing boats. A few Tuna are mixed in with the Bonitos and that’s always a nice surprise.

For those on the drift fishing boat that bothered to drop to the bottom? Mutton, Yellowtail and Vermillion snapper made up a nice catch each trip.

Our sport boat was also working some of the shallow wrecks and reefs we have and as I said, it’s also about the kids on dad’s day. Check out this monster Barracuda caught by this young angler! Isn’t it great when you’re young and short? You can say you caught a fish bigger than you! And it’s true… Well, it was. LOL

Father’s Day fishing was a blast but no reason to wait for the day to come around again. They are biting right now.

Capt. Steve

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Fort Lauderdale Fishing Forecast

Posted on by Captain Steve

With the weather we have been having here in south Florida, the Fort Lauderdale fishing forecast is somewhat easy. Weather-wise, hot temperatures and afternoon showers are the standard. I’ve often wondered if the TV weather people have 3 dart boards… One for the low, somewhere between 78 and 85, another for the high, between 88 and 98 and a third for chance of rain. Each day the forecast changes are minor. And those thunderstorms are short lived…

With that said, the fishing trends also become somewhat predictable. The hot temperatures raise the sea temps, creating a thermocline. Fish, being cold blooded, don’t care for abrupt changes and will stay below these lines as a rule. One thermocline is usually 5 to 8’ below the surface, a second one can be anywhere from 20’ down to 60’, usually ranging around 35 or 40’.

This brings our deeper baits into play. And while any fish can be caught with a bait below the surface, Kingfish, Bonitos, Tuna’s and Wahoo are the most frequent. There are days we go without a single bite on our surface rods, the deep lines and baits doing all the work.

These deeper lines can also catch Sailfish, Mahi-mahi, even Grouper and Snapper if set deep enough. As a friend of mine used to say, there are no fences in the ocean.

As we move further from shore, the tide water that carries the fresh water from rain thins out and we just have to deal with the thermoclines. And while there are no fences, these create barriers of a sort. Fish run along these lines, on one side or the other. Fishing the baits around these lines can and will produce bites. Those Sailfish and Dolphin we spoke of are much more aggressive in the cleaner water. The surface baits play a much larger part.

It’s all about fishing and catching. This time of year, quantity and number of fish keep our guests happy. Will save the stories and jokes for the slower times…

Capt. Steve

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Birthday Fishing Party

Posted on by Captain Steve

An old friend of mine surprised at the dock this morning. I hadn’t seen him in 10 years or so and I learned his 6-year-old was celebrating his birthday aboard the Lois Ann. A birthday fishing party!

Many times, we have birthday fishing parties on our boats. Some are private, others just join who ever is on the drift boat and in this case, they made up about half the people on board.

The great thing about kids that age is they don’t care how big, what kind or anything else about a fish. It’s a fish and that alone is exciting. All fish that come over the rail are inspected by the young anglers with approving stares. Then the barrage of questions begins, sometimes waiting for an answer, other times not so much. LOL

It’s all about having fun with family and friends… And, of course, divvying up the catch at the end of the trip. The group had caught about 12-15 snappers and I’m pretty sure the barbecue was ready and waiting!

So if you’re looking for something special for those youngsters in your life? A birthday fishing party might just be the perfect match!

Capt. Steve

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