Islamorada Inshore & Offshore Weekend Report

I could really get use to this no wind thing that we have been experiencing over the weekend. The weather is cool and the water is calm with excellent clarity.


Inshore we have been fishing Whipray Basin, polling and watching for signs of feeding or traveling fish. We saw redfish tailing all day long....what a beautiful sight that is. There were also several large schools of sheepshead who were at times tailing as well. As you get closer you can see the difference with sheepshead in the tails as it's more of a clear blushish tone. You will also notice that they are picky eaters too! If we had shrimp, it would have been a closed deal on a few of them but we were only fishing with soft plastics and on fly. A few followed a gold spoon but no luck getting a bite out of one. The redfish were hungry and happy to eat everything we had available to cast. A few decent sized spotted seatrout were found sunbathing in the sandy areas. We got one to eat, and he was successfully released back along with the redfish that were caught.


Check out the live scallop we saw while poling around on the grassy flats. On the small side and put back in the water to grow! A pretty rare sight here in the Keys.


Offshore has been beautiful. Over the weekend we did some bottom fishing on the wrecks just north of Sombrero Reef. Using live pilchards for bait we caught several amberjack, jack crevalle and snapper. Plenty of rod bending action for our charter clients. We did see a few sailfish free jumping near by but could not get one to bite this weekend. The sail action has slowed down in the last week. It's hard to give a solid answer as to why the bite slows off and on but we rely often on the moon phases, between the 1st and the 18th the moon was between new and full. We also had fronts throughout those two weeks. Generally, the best sailfish bite is in the days leading up to the full moon. Our next new moon is February 10th and next full moon is on February 25th. Several of our friends headed to Cay Sal (Bahamas) in search for wahoo and the report for today was a decent bite...not near as epic as a couple weeks ago. Each boat brought home 1-4 fish this evening. Off Conch Key the kingfish bite is ok and we have come across a few schools of blackfin tuna and dolphin (mahi-mahi) while trolling/drifting for sailfish.


We will be out again on Wednesday inshore and Saturday for offshore. Have a great week everyone! Outofthebluecharters.com
Capt. Brittney Novalsky
Florida Sportswoman
"Advancing the sport of women in the fishing industry through education to become better anglers and conservationists."
www.floridasportswoman.com
Personal Blog: www.facebook.com/fishingadventureswithbrittney

Replies

  • heavychevy15heavychevy15 Posts: 837 Officer
    Nice work! Breaking in Todd's new HB the right way :beer
  • Chewdog2121Chewdog2121 Posts: 469 Officer
    Nice report Brittney. Whipray Basin is a beautiful area indeed. Not to hijack your thread, but in September of last year I was catching bait in that basin and had a very large scallop come flipping up to the surface of the water. I too was thrilled to see it, especially since I was unable to see a SINGLE scallop in Steinhatchee this year due to all the dirty water!

    The last couple times I've been out I've seen nice sized sheepshead as well (along with plenty of reds and solid sea trout as well) while I was on the tower/trolling motor. Have you guys successfully tossed live shrimp at the sheepies? They certainly push water similar to reds when in shallow.
  • piner_wahoopiner_wahoo Posts: 3,329 Captain
    outstanding blackfin!
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  • SaltwaterSportswomanSaltwaterSportswoman Posts: 43 Deckhand
    That is a LARGE scallop!! When fun fishing I usually do not target sheepshead, so I just have soft plastics and flies on board. But for clients who are out we bring plenty of shrimp and catch live bait for sheepshead and snapper to keep a good mix during the day.
    Capt. Brittney Novalsky
    Florida Sportswoman
    "Advancing the sport of women in the fishing industry through education to become better anglers and conservationists."
    www.floridasportswoman.com
    Personal Blog: www.facebook.com/fishingadventureswithbrittney
  • Chewdog2121Chewdog2121 Posts: 469 Officer
    That is a LARGE scallop!! When fun fishing I usually do not target sheepshead, so I just have soft plastics and flies on board. But for clients who are out we bring plenty of shrimp and catch live bait for sheepshead and snapper to keep a good mix during the day.

    That's what I thought!!! I love to see signs of life like that on a flat, it reassures me that I'm fishing the right areas.

    Great to see you giving reports. I know you guys are on the water a lot, and there is no substitute for time on the water experience. Keep passing along the info, we're listening (reading). :wink

    BTW, those were two nice fish (the blackfin and king).
  • TavernierGuyTavernierGuy Posts: 917 Officer
    Great report! Thanks for posting.
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