Posts Tagged "Fishing"
This is the time of year Florida folks long for… When a cold front pushes through our area. The oppressive heat lowers as does the humidity and we stop complaining about how hot it is and begin complaining how cold it is. LOL
Being from Chicago, I call these “cool” fronts. As we relish temps in the 60-70’s, we also dig out our jeans, sweaters, jackets and gloves. Being a resident here for over 50 years now, I join those folks shivering on a early morning in the low 60’s.
What does this have to do with a fishing report you ask? Well, just as we change our clothes to endure, the fish must change their location to stay comfy. They do this by migrating south and Fort Lauderdale just happens to be right in a spot they pass by.
The Continental shelf lies just off our coast. With the Gulf Stream being miles off our shore with its north current, the fish move inside close to the coast to make their trip. And with each “cool” front that comes through, the temperatures in the water dip a little cooler. Welcome to our version of I-95 for fish!
Our catches change from mostly edible fish to game and sport fish. Sailfish and sharks are the top catches with other species mixed in. Most Mahi’s caught this time of year don’t have to be measured, they far exceed the legal minimum. Tuna become more prolific and Wahoo are also around. They like Tuna too. LOL
So at this time of year as you visit from somewhere up north, don’t be surprised at the clothes we might be wearing as you show up for your fishing trip with shorts and a T. There is a chance of filling the box with just one fish! And that’s saying something… LOL
As fall comes upon us, it is time to make some changes in our Fort Lauderdale fishing techniques. Cooler weather and shorter days have most our summertime fishes migrating south. While trolling is still used to some extent, we switch from dragging dead, rigged baits to slow trolling live baits. Small bullet Bonitos and Ballyhoo are my 2 favorites.
If the wind is up and blowing hard enough to get the kites up? That’s an option I like best! The kite supports the bait up on or near the surface. This causes the bait to struggle to get deeper and those struggling sounds are picked up by all types of fish. Sailfish, Dolphin and shark are the usual species, but any fish can be attracted.
Kite fishing also gives you a great chance of “seeing” what’s biting before they strike. The slashing of a Sailfish bill or the fin of a shark that has been attracted. The head wake of a Dolphin or maybe just a splash of a King or Tuna. While your crew is used to looking for these signs, even an untrained eye will pick up the obvious.
Lately trolling has slowed to some degree. The number of fish we catch each trip is declining. But the size of those fish is increasing. The Mahi of the summer are now 15-20 lbs.
With a slow bite, we turn to our wrecks and reefs, both shallow and deep. A live bait on some light tackle can add to the fun. But our deep drops don’t get the light tackle. The fish in the picture is the reason why.
This Black Grouper would make quick work of a 20 or 30 lb. setup. He would have found his way back into the rocks or structure. Now wouldn’t you hate to see that happen… LOL
Fort Lauderdale fishing. Get ready for some bigger game fish!
This is a GREAT time of year to be offshore of Fort Lauderdale fishing. You just don’t know what will bite. With all the bait migrating through the area and heading south down the coast, any species of fish can be present and give you a bite. As a friend of mine says, this is where opportunity meets preparedness!
Perhaps it is dinner you are after. Dolphin, Wahoo, Tuna and more can be caught close to shore. Kingfish and Bonitos are always around to some degree and that Sailfish can make his presence known.
While many of the boats are starting to use live bait, I still prefer trolling. You cover more ground and even a quarter of a mile can make the difference between action and no action.
There is nothing more exciting than watching a Sailfish come up and make a pass or swat at one of your baits. Or seeing a Dolphin come in from 150 yards away, pulling a head wake, and charging one of your baits.
If the trolling isn’t producing, we shake things up with some kite fishing. Sometimes live bait will entice a bite when the trolling gear won’t. You can also hit the deep an shallow wrecks for some action on dead or live bait.
While I mostly do the sport fishing end of things, even our drift boat gets into the action. The picture above shows a Sail caught by one of our regular customers on our drift fishing boat. He also caught a nice Mutton Snapper that day.
No matter which type of fishing you choose, be it sport or drift, it is a great time of year to be off the coast of Fort Lauderdale fishing!
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.
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…
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.
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.
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…
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.