Islamorada Action

Dolphin catches are good

August 1, 2005

**Dolphin catches are good for those who venture well offshore.  Capt. Paul on the Skipper charter boat from Whale Harbor Marina had a box full of Dolphin weighing from 5 to 18 pounds.  Most of the Dolphin out to twenty miles are on the small side.

The Party boat Miss Tradewinds is doing a number on the Snapper on the reef  lately.  Not only the Yellowtail, but catches of big Mangrove Snapper are happening in daylight.  Along the edge of the reef the Mutton Snapper are making a good showing as are the Red Grouper.  The method of choice is to fish a fresh Ballyhoo plug or even better a live Pilchard on the bottom.  Use a 5/0 hook to a 30# leader and no more lead than it takes to hold bottom.  Usually a 4 oz. Egg sinker is just right.

Gulf and Bay:
Gulf water has cleaned up since last week and bait fish are everywhere.  Pilchards, Ballyhoo and Threadfin Herring are free roaming throughout the Gulf.  Snapper fishing is still excellent with a mix of trout and Jacks thrown in.  Just “park it” and drop a chum bag and the action will start.  The bait has been so thick that it is sometimes possible to dip net the Pinfish eating out of the bag.  Drift fresh chunk bait back with the chum and put a live Pinfish out on a bottom rig off to the side. While you are at it, under a float (like used for Tarpon, but smaller) drift a small Blue Crab out on the bobber.  Permit, Cobia or even Tarpon may eat it.


Flats, Backcountry and Flamingo:
In the Flamingo area are plenty of small Tarpon, Snook and Sharks in the channels.  The Snook are eating live Pinfish very well.  The Tarpon will eat a dead bait such as Ladyfish or Jack Crevalle diagonally cut and laid on the bottom.  Way up skinny close to the mainland shoreline some guides are chasing Redfish and catching some mostly on very small Crabs.  That endeavor is not for everyone, as you must get very shallow.   Closer to home the Bonefish action has been good in the morning both Oceanside and bayside.


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