Mosquito Lagoon Cold Snap

Wade Red.JPG

Capt. Drew Cavanaugh
January 20, 2009
Mosquito Lagoon – Saltwater Fishing Report

With the recent snaps of cold fronts that central Florida has been having the fishing has snapped too. It has snapped into a good thing, winter red fishing on the Mosquito Lagoon is here! By this I mean it is changing and you too should change your tactics. A sunrise start is not always the ticket.

When cold weather moves into the area the fishing on the lagoon tends to change a bit, for the good and even sometimes the GREAT! The fish will bunch up into large schools and will move into the shallow warming waters of the flats throughout the day. Remember the key with this are that fish are not mammals…they are cold blooded animals that will adjust to their surroundings. They need to warm up and then get active.


As the days warm up, the fishing will pick up. Take your time when fishing colder days. Fish tend to be a bit more sluggish. Let them see your bait, let them think the bait is slow or worn down, a free meal. You almost can not work it slow enough. Sight fishing is always my favorite choice but working white holes and bars can produce very good numbers of fish too. Throw shrimp or plastics into the holes and work areas thoroughly but slowly. Adapt to the days surroundings. Remember sun rise will warm western banks up first and as the day progresses it will warm eastern banks.

Redfish have been seen and caught in good numbers on the flats using live shrimp. Schooling reds are what I personally have been seeing. Some schools I have hooked into have had over 200 fish in them, and even more, these are just what I have been able to see. Along with a few singles here and there tailing and feeding happily. However, the exciting thing are the amount of trout I have been seeing. Gator Trout if that.

The other day we were poling a flat edge that went from about 10 inches to about 18 inches along an area of about four football fields in size. On the out side of this area it is about 2-3 feet deep.(A drop off ledge nearby) We saw over 30 plus trout in this area. I know you are saying wow….30, not that many! Well these trout looked to me to be each over 30 plus inches with some that looked like a yard sticks. The unique thing was that they were moving along with finger mullet along the edges of this flat. Just back and forth. There must have been at least 10,000 mullet in that particular area. This is what I would call a food source for these trout. Or I like to call them “The Special Forces” of the Mosquito Lagoon. Now mixed in with these fish were several single medium slot reds and a bunch of lower slot trout. The key with attempting to land a true gator trout out there is big time patience and just keep trying. Just do not give up. Again, soft plastics or live shrimp work very well in this situation.


I look forward to seeing you all on the water this year. Again I want to wish every one a happy and productive new year.

Tight Lines and Happy Fishing!
Captain Drew Cavanaugh
Florida Inshore Fishing Charters
Mosquito Lagoon Fishing Guide