First off I would like to mention that we have NO OIL IN THE KEYS from the BP oil spill. We are fishing, boating, snorkeling, swimming and beach-going as usual.
Now for the fishing report:
Good news and bad news: The good news is that the mangrove snapper fishing is about as good as it can ever get in the daytime. The bad news is that if you wait 3 weeks it will slow down and you won’t catch as many fish. The night bite, on the other hand is still warming up. I would guess that the fish have about another week before they are in full swing for the night bite.
In the daytime we are fishing patch reefs no deeper than 25 feet and slaying the mangroves (grovers)!!!! They are swimming right up to the surface and most of them you can watch eat the bait. Not that you could use one on the Capt. Michael, but you could easily target these fish with a fly rod if you wanted to! If you are interested in something as unusual as snapper fishing with a fly rod just call the ticket booth at 305-664-8070 and set up a trip with me on the Satisfaction. I will make it happen! Not too many people can say they ever caught a snapper in fly!
As for the yellowtails they are biting their butts off too, but I haven’t been targeting them as much as the mangroves for a few reasons… A: mangroves are easier to catch, B: grovers are better eating, C: grovers fight better and lastly you can catch mangroves all the way around the boat instead of only on the back which makes it more fun for more people.
We are catching lots of short groupers, but I don’t think we have filleted one in a week or so. That’s pretty typical of the summer time. Snappers are on and groupers are off. The last sizable grouper was about a 15 pound black off a wreck in 95 feet on a night trip during the full moon. About the only time groupers really bite at night for us is during the full moon.
As for the offshore scene, the Islamorada Lady II has been slaying the dolphin (mahi-mahi)! Schoolies, gaffers and slammers, they are getting all of them! With Capt. Jeff temporarily helping the government search for oil in our waters (there is none!!!!) we had Capt. Carlos Jimenez take the helm and he did a fantastic job. Capt. Jeff is back now and the dolphin are stacking up on the fillet table. Tunas are biting too, as well as the occasional wahoo.
The night bite for yellowtails and mangroves will stay hot for another two months, with the next 4 weeks or so being the best. If you want to fish the party boat for $40 just call 305-664-8070. If you prefer a private trip on a charter boat for the same fish with less people on board it’s the same number, just tell the booking agent you would like a night snapper trip and they will point in the right direction.
Happy fourth to everyone out there! We look forward to fishing with you soon!!!