Yellowtail Fishing in Islamorada is On the Up!

Wow! Are the yellowtails ever here!  Mainly at night, but the bite is out of this world!  In the patch reefs we are catching them up to a pound and a half, but out on the wrecks we are getting them up to 4 pounds on a consistent basis.  And to make matters even better underneath the tails on the bottom are lane snappers, muttons and porgies.  Don’t worry too much about the bait for the tails.  It’s more about the tackle you fish with.  You want a spinning rod with 10 to 20 pound test MONO on it and a small jig from 1/32 ounce to 1/8th ounce.  That’s it, you don’t need anything more or less than that.

The mutton bite is on too.  A while ago I mentioned in a report that if you want to catch muttons all you have to do is get with the Robbie’s ticket booth at 305-664-8070 and they will set you up on my boat.  One group of guys did just that and we did what I like to call a “nuttin’ but mutton” trip.  We came up with 9 muttons up to 16 pounds.  We fished nothing but deep wrecks with fresh and live bait.  It was a lot of fun and we are already planning on doing the same thing again next year!

Groupers have been a bit slow.  Now that the water is warming up they are getting pretty hard to come by.

The hot scene offshore is dolphin.  They are biting like crazy everywhere outside of 300 feet of water.  I haven’t seen the Islamorada Lady come in with a catch that was anything less than awesome in weeks!  They have mainly been catching dolphin, but tunas and wahoos have made their way into the box also.

Tarpon is also red hot.  The charter boats out of Robbie’s are getting them on a nightly basis.

Sometimes I feel like I sound like I relay the idea that everything is fantastic and everything is biting.  I guess I tend to only talk about what you can expect to catch with us as opposed to what isn’t biting well.  Well in the interest of not being misleading or a liar, here we go…   the kingfish bite is absolutely horrible.  If you come down just to catch kings you are probably going to be less than impressed.  The sailfish bite is also pretty much non-existent.  I suppose a few boats are seeing them from time to time but they are basically gone.

So that’s the report from the last week or so… As for predictions, I would expect to see the tails and muttons bite like crazy for the next couple months.   The mangroves will start really chewing at night after the full moon in July, while the dolphin will remain hot until late August.  If you are coming to fish the Capt. Michael party boat make sure you bring your light spinning gear for the yellowtails!

Looking forward to fishing with you soon,

Capt. Brian

Snapper Fishing in Islamorada Getting Better and Better

Lately the snapper bite has been getting better and better both day and night.  If you name a snapper out there that we commonly catch I guarantee you it has been more abundant this week than last, and you can expect the same verdict next week.  The mangroves at night have been red hot. Nothing like the main spawn in July and August but it has been very good.  Capt. Ron limited out a few times last week and the week before in 20 feet of water.

The yellowtails are getting very close to spawning.  They all have eggs and “milk” in them when we fillet them and they are getting much more available to our angling tactics too.  The days when the water is very dirty are much more productive, but even when it’s clear we are catching them.

Grouper-wise, both the charter boats and party boat have been catching nice reds, blacks and gags.  As usual with groupers if the entire boat catches two or three it was a good day, so please don’t expect to go out and bring home a bunch of groupers just because I say the bite is good.  A good grouper week is one where we bring in about a keeper a day.

If you plan on fishing with us in the next few weeks I would expect the yellowtail bite to get RED HOT very soon.  Most likely a few days after the next full moon.  They will bite on almost any bait this time of year as long as it’s on a small hook and line no heavier than 15 pound test.  Ballyhoo and silversides are usually best.

The mutton snappers are getting ready to jump into the boat too. This full moon and the three days on either side of it are going to be awesome!  Use fresh ballyhoo and goggle-eye for them fished on bottom on a long leader.

The grouper bite will be about the same as now… a few here and there, mainly reds and blacks. Live baits are usually best but don’t discount a butterflied grunt or yellowtail.

We are creeping up on the hot mangrove season too.  It’s close but not here quite yet.  With the cold winter we had I wouldn’t expect a hot bite until after the full moon in July. When they are biting they eat anything, as long as it’s on line twenty pound or under.

Hope to see you out on a boat from Robbie’s soon!

Capt. Brian