Due to numerous emails about the "practice of Dolphin fishing" I would like
to make the following clarification.
The fish we are referring to as dolphin, as it is called in the Keys and
south Florida, is a fish, also known as the Dorado and
Mahi-Mahi. This is not the Dolphin mammal.
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The second week of June provided plenty of
Dolphin for charters and tournament anglers alike. Most of the Mahi
caught were of the “school” size, meaning from 4 to 8 pounds. That
size is what the charter guys refer to as “lifters”, meaning no gaff
is required to put the fish into the boat. Charter boats such as the
Southern Comfort out of Whale Harbor Marina racked twenty or so
Dolphin for a day catch and even bay boats such as Captain Juan
Garcia’s 24 foot “Beatsland” cleaned up with nice catches of Dolphin
in the Bluewater. Captain Don on the Kay K IV was in the process of
baiting a school of Dolphin when they turned their attention to a
different species and caught a 60 pound White Marlin. One local
Dolphin Tournament attracted 395 anglers and the heaviest Dolphin
caught was 28 pounds.
Even with the good Dolphin action some opted to
stay close to home and fish the reef. The Indigenous out of Bud and
Mary’s Marina had a limit of Kingfish and a 15 pound Blackfin Tuna.
Captain Billy Chrisman on the Vera Vita fished the reef and boated a
nice bunch of Yellowtail Snapper. Captain Paul on the Reef Runner
caught some King Mackerel and had a few Dolphin swim up in 150 feet
of water too.
Gulf and Bay:
In the western area of the bay, adjacent to the
Gulf, the Trout action is good. Captain Lou Brubaker fished a father
and son out near Sandy Key and caught a load of Trout putting just
enough in the cooler for dinner. There are some nice Mangrove
Snapper taking the jigs offered to the Trout out there too. There
are Sharks and Tarpon in the channels that drain the huge expanses
of shallow water out to the west, so look for a good bite on the
tide changes in those channels. The Mullet are very plentiful in
that area, so live Mullet or even a fresh dead chunk will prompt a
bite from either Tarpon or Sharks.
Flats, Backcountry and Flamingo:
Captain Fred out of Smugglers Cove Marina
reported getting into some Redfish and Snook in the infamous Snake
Bight channel last week. Captain Bob Baker found some Snook and
Redfish pitching baits into a mainland drain creek out west of
Flamingo. Islamorada guides have been putting the full court press
on the Tarpon last week, fishing all hours of the night and corners
of the day. The Tarpon action was everything from sensational to
where the heck are they? Or as they say, “from a hero to a zero”.
That just shows that the Tarpon have a mind of their own and even
with conditions that look good, there can be that unknown variable
that puts them off. Guides have been baiting the Tarpon with Mullet,
Crabs and chunk baits, mostly in the channels.
Capt. James Chappell's Fishing
Provided by Catchalottafish Charters
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Hello everyone, and welcome
back to this weeks report! Pretty solid week here in the upper
Florida Keys, as the fish have been chewing! A lot going on, so
starting with the offshore scene the Mahi fishing has been great!
Plenty of Mahi around this week with lots of fat schoolies and a
handful of nicer ones mixed in. The tuna bite on the humps, and in
on the deep ledge, has been pretty good as well. The wrecks and deep
reef has been on fire this week with an excellent bite of mutton
Snappers as they are spawning, with some really nice black Groupers
mixed in. The reefs edge has been producing well too with some nice
yellowtail snappers, and Even a few mangrove Snappers starting to
show up. Been some nice african Pompano’s around the wrecks as well.
In addition, some big king mackerel have been passing through.
Pretty great week of fishing all around! The weather report is
looking great throughout the weekend, so just about any boat size
should be able to find some fun! Have a great weekend everyone!
Capt. James Chappell