Give us three consecutive warm days and the fishing gets good, the only problem is we keep getting these weekly interruptions from cool, windy weather. Anglers turned in some good fishing reports ahead of the foul weather and good fishing should return again this week with warm days in the forecast.
Captain Cliff Simer reports decent trout action in Pine Island Sound while live bait fishing the shorelines north of Captiva Pass. A few snook, redfish and flounder were also caught over sandy bottom off island points. Simer also reports redfish, a few large trout and snook on the eastern side of Charlotte Harbor.
Afternoon high tides produced best for Capt. Sean McQuade, who located hungry redfish up to 26 inches in mid-Pine Island Sound, plus a few trout and flounder. All fish were caught on live shrimp fished around mullet schools along shorelines.
While spring breaking at South Seas Plantation on Sanibel, Joe O'Hallaron of Virginia treated his son Erin to a afternoon fishing trip. Pictured is a nice redfish Erin caught and released in Pine Island Sound while fishing with Capt. Bill Russell.
In southern Pine Island Sound, Capt. Mark Westra found a mix of trout, mackerel and ladyfish in and around the perimeter of sand potholes north of the power lines, plus sheepshead in oyster creeks around "Ding" Darling. Several snook were also caught and released near the mouth of the Caloosahatchee River, plus jack crevalle.
Also in the southern and mid-sound, Capt. Anthony Pierce found similar action with trout and mackerel, plus a few snook near Demere Key.
In south Matlacha Pass, redfish up to 25 inches were caught on the afternoon high water along creek mouths near Masters Landing.
Captain Gary Clark reported a mix of bluefish, mackerel and trout over the grass flats near the Sanibel Causeway Islands on both the gulf and bay side. Clark also found a good redfish bite over the afternoon high tide near Buck Key and Captiva.
Anglers who were lucky enough to head offshore on the few calm days were rewarded with some tasty red grouper to open the season. Grouper from 22 to 28 inches were taken in depths from 85 to 100 feet. Most fish were caught on live pinfish, grunts and cut bait, including fresh mullet or ladyfish. Spanish mackerel schools were also located from just off the beaches out to 100 feet.
Our water temperature has slowly risen above the 70 degree mark. A slight cool down this past weekend dropped it a few degrees, but it will be on a steady rise from here on. Fishing should get more consistent as the month progresses and inshore waters reach and stabilize in the mid 70s. Expect the big boys (tarpon and sharks) to make their move into our waters any day. Oldtimers say when you see the white butterflies, it's time to start looking for tarpon, well I have seen a lot of white butterflies while fishing over the past week. Get ready!
Have a safe week and good fishin'.