Weekly South Florida Fishing Report - February 15, 2018


OFFSHORE

Off Jupiter last week there were some banded rudderfish caught in 90 to 110 feet of water.

The bottom fishing for lane, vermilion and mutton snapper has been slow, but will likely pick up this weekend with the southeast breezes forecasted.

Last week, there was a window of calm seas and anglers looking for swordfish took full advantage. Traveling out to 1,400 to 1,500 feet of water, there were multiple hook-ups and several of the big fish landed.

There was also a decent kingfish bite off the Loran Tower in 90 to 110 feet recently. In the 6- to 10-pound range, they weren’t big, but they were there and could be again in the coming days.

With a good number of frigate birds spotted recently and decent weather and lighter winds predicted this weekend, it could be worth it to go looking for dolphin.

Anglers up for the hunt should look for weedlines and current changes in 500 to 600 feet of water and could hit payday trolling ballyhoo, squid or mullet.

Off Singer Island, there have been a few sailfish caught recently in 130 feet of water.

There have also been some 10- to 20-pound kingfish as well in 70 to 90 feet.

Fishing off Boynton Beach there have been dolphin caught on the drift in 75 feet of water. Most are averaging around 6 pounds, but there have been some up to 12 pounds.

There have been a few wahoo caught on the drift as well, using triple-hooked ballyhoo and cigar minnows. Most have been on the small side between 12 to 20 pounds and being caught in 90 feet of water.

Some king mackerel are moving through the area in small wolf packs. They are being taken on drifted cigar minnows in anywhere between 25 to 150 feet of water. Though most are undersized and being released, there have been a few between 15 and 25 pounds.

Cobia continue to pop up from time to time, hitting drifted baits or jigs tipped with squid bounced off the bottom in depths ranging from 35 to 90 feet.

Mutton, yellowtail, mangrove and lane snapper have held close to the reef edges in 60 to 80 feet of water. The bull and sandbar sharks, however, have moved into these depths and have been aggressively feeding on fish being reeled up.

Red, Black, Gag, Nassau and Strawberry grouper continue being caught and released along the reef by anglers bottom fishing for snapper.

INSHORE

Along the beaches in Jupiter, anglers have been having good luck catching pompano, Spanish mackerel and bluefish.

For pompano the key has been finding that seafoam green water. Remember to use a colorful lure like a Doc’s Goofy Jig or bonefish jig, as they have poor eyesight.

The Intracoastal Waterway in the Jupiter area has been a great bet recently. One angler fishing between channel marker 42 and 44 reported catching pompano, croaker and jack crevalle. All were caught using Doc’s Goofy Jigs.

There have also been some snook around and, although they are not in season, are still a blast to catch.

Mullet are working best for snook, but if you can’t find them, lures that look like mullet like an X-Rap are also good.

The Lake Worth Inlet has been fantastic lately for jack crevalle. These hard-fighting, rod benders are occasionally being located in the thousands and are hitting with great consistency on live shrimp on a bucktail jig.

In addition, large schools of sheepshead have traveled underneath the jacks.

Bluefish, jack crevalle and pompano have dominated the surf for anglers fishing the beaches in South Palm Beach, Lantana, Boynton, Gulfstream and Delray.

Pompano have been hitting sand fleas or Doc’s Goofy Jigs during the first 2 to 3 hours out of the outgoing tide while jacks and bluefish have been hitting top-water lures and spoons early in the morning until about 10 a.m.

Boynton Inlet anglers have caught sheepshead up to 10 pounds using live crabs off the north jetty.

Jack crevalle, spots and snook have fed on live shrimp fished on the bottom.

There have been a few flounder up to 7 pounds caught off the south wall at the inlet by anglers slowly bouncing half- to three quarter-ounce green jig heads tipped with live shrimp off the bottom during the last half-hour of incoming tide.

Reports of bonefish up to 10 pounds being caught and released on the flats just northeast of the inlet have been reported. They were caught on 9-weight flyrods using EP Ghost Shrimp and Christmas Island Special fly patterns. Using the same flies also caught spotted seatrout and mangrove snapper around docks along Manalapan and Hypoluxo Island.

Using jig heads tipped with live shrimp has been providing good catch and release action on small snook, ladyfish and drum under the Lantana Bridge.

LAKE OKEECHOBEE

The speckled perch bite has been excellent lately. The best action on these tasty pan fish has been just into the Kissimmee River and along the pass and they are hitting on minnows and jigs.

The bass bite has picked up with the warmer weather. They are being taken mostly using live shiners, but working the grass areas and lilly pads with artificial frogs and speed worms has been producing as well.

All fishing report information courtesy of Fishing Headquarters in Jupiter, Capt. Weston Russell at Reel Intense Fishing Charters, Capt. Bruce Cyr and Garrard’s Tackle Shop in Okeechobee.



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