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Homosassa grouper digging 11-30-18

butchbalbutchbal Posts: 472 Deckhand
Lee, Randy and I teamed up for some grouper fishing, taking advantage of the break in the wind Friday. NOAA was pretty much correct with it's forecast of 2+ foot seas in the morning tapering off in the afternoon. We manage 5 keeper gags, 2 hogfish and a pile of nice sized grunts. I hooked up a 8 to 9 foot shark, possibly a sandbar or dusky, which thankfully broke off after giving me a fifteen minute **** whooping. We had to work for our fish as we visited 4 or 5 spots during the course of the day picking up 1 or 2 here and there. We fished a combination of livebait and frozen sardines in 30 to 50 depths. It was a fun day even if a little bumpy early on.


  • mburke001 aka TripleBmburke001 aka TripleB Posts: 1,531 Captain
    Nice fishing 👍
  • Rick1-2Rick1-2 HorseshoePosts: 964 Officer
  • StressReeliefStressReelief OcalaPosts: 34 Deckhand
    Very nice Gents, that ride back in sure looks swift and smooth
  • conchydongconchydong Pompano BeachPosts: 6,400 Admiral
    When it comes to good eats, you got some of the best, way to go.

    “Everyone behaves badly--given the chance.”
    ― Ernest Hemingway

  • Doc StressorDoc Stressor Homosassa, FLPosts: 2,636 Captain
    edited December 2018 #6
    I've been having problems scratching out keeper gags this fall, but this was a fun trip.  My alarm didn't go off, so we ended up leaving very late. Butch called it a half day charter when I finally showed up.  :D  We ended up staying out much later than normal trying to get the last keeper to fill out the limit. Had to turn the running lights on coming up the river.  Of course, Riverhaven Marina was closed for the night so the boat had to be left in the water. 

    Things have been strange out there this whole season.  There has been very little bait, even during the summer.  The red tide north and south of us may have something to do with this since baitfish are migratory and the entire eastern Gulf is connected ecologically. Most of the white bait should be gone by now with the water temperature in the low 60s, but we aren't seeing the typical schools of tomtates hanging around the rock piles. The gags seem to be more scattered offshore than normal for this time of year.  We'd stop over scattered rocks or swiss cheese bottom with no fish showing on the machine, pick up a few grouper, maybe one keeper, then the bite would die.  Every time we moved to a different spot it was pretty much the same.  We aren't seeing red tide refugees from other areas that I was hoping for this fall. 

    The sudden cold nights has affected the shallows. The shrimpers hadn't been out since last weekend.  We got the last 5 dozen from Bonny, who said she had been keeping them alive since Monday morning.  We saw a bunch of cold shocked Kemp's Ridley turtles floating on the surface in the morning.  But since the day warmed up, they are probably fine. 
  • jadman69jadman69 Posts: 168 Deckhand
    That's a good day to me.  I've been trolling for them the last 2 months and they have been hit or miss from trip to trip.  I need to try the bottom again before the season ends.
  • Ruff OneRuff One HomosassaPosts: 2,079 Captain
    Nice trip. We tried Thursday for a half day, and it was miserable. Cold but no wind. Did the half day also, but no fish. Not the first strike. Bait was everywhere. Marks schools on almost any kind of good structure. White bait and ballyhoos. I think the grouper were stuffed! Not sure what's going on, but no cooperation in shallow. 
  • Doc StressorDoc Stressor Homosassa, FLPosts: 2,636 Captain
    edited December 2018 #9
    I have to get into that shallow water stuff more often.  It's different in there.  I just keep doing the same stuff I've been doing for 42 years.  It's because I'm old!  :D

    Only one of our grouper had anything in the stomach and that was a file fish. 
  • EarthmoverEarthmover Posts: 384 Deckhand
  • xmuskyguidexmuskyguide Beautiful HomosassaPosts: 1,780 Captain
    Working for them paid off. Nice job guys. 
  • capt louiecapt louie citrus countyPosts: 10,269 Moderator
    Nice trip guys. I think what bait we have is really tiny. I mark some deep bait but no big surface schooling bait. Been that way all summer. ? 
    "You'll get your weather"
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