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SHRIMP REPORT MIAMI 2020-2021...

First cold front...any reports on shrimp in the Bay???

let's  hear'em    :)
New to me 9-17-2020 2008 Donzi 38 ZSF 3 X 300 Verados
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Replies

  • CaptJCaptJ Posts: 1,249 Officer
    Heard that there are some in the cuts down south.
  • evernic1evernic1 NMBPosts: 180 Deckhand
    thanks...need more cold...I guess
    New to me 9-17-2020 2008 Donzi 38 ZSF 3 X 300 Verados
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,100 Captain
    Still a bit early and the current warm spell (except for tonight) won't help... I usually expect it to get cold and stay that way right after Christmas - at least that's been the pattern the last few years... I look forward to the shrimp run since that's when I start running night charters between Miami and Miami Beach when the tide is falling for the small tarpon that line up to snack on shrimp.... 
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • Wra22Wra22 Posts: 209 Deckhand
    Now that most of the grass in N.  Biscayne Bay is gone do you guys think the shrimp will still be there?  Dotheyneed grass to live and breed?
  • xeniaxenia Posts: 827 Officer
    My brother got married on December 29, 1990.  The night before I went shrimping with my uncle and we filled the box plus three 30-gallon buckets (>600 lbs) by 10:30pm south of Rickenbacker.  I called another boat over and he arrived just as I was leaving.  He ended up with 800 lbs.  These were not the little runt shrimp that if you had the choice between cleaning them or getting waterboarded, you'd definitely choose waterboarded.  These were good sized shrimp with a few jumbos mixed in.  I doubt we'll see runs like that again since there were hundreds of boats doing the same thing every night.
  • Wra22Wra22 Posts: 209 Deckhand
    800 pounds. Wonder why the runs are not as big anymore. 
  • xeniaxenia Posts: 827 Officer
    The lobster guys out of the river using big wing nets with heavy cables would run 6-7 knots while shrimping, and on good nights would get 2000-3000 lbs.  They would continue shrimping into April and even May some years catching shrimp that were barely large enough to put on a 2/0 hook let alone eat, but they kept on catching them.  It's amazing just how many pounds of shrimp were taken from such a small area around Miami starting in the mid-80s until just a few years ago.  Where were the regulations?  Hello?  Bueller?  Bueller?
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,100 Captain
    I’ve long advocated that no commercial shrimping be allowed in Biscayne Bay.  I even brought it to the attention of our local CCA - but they have so many other issues that it never went anywhere at all.

    If commercial shrimping in the Bay were stopped,  fishing in Biscayne Bay would come roaring back in just a year or two...  Fish are simple - if there’s not enough food here they go somewhere else and we all suffer for it.
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • xeniaxenia Posts: 827 Officer
    I think it goes beyond just the bay.  All those millions of shrimp come to the surface and go out with the outgoing tide, feeding many fish offshore.  We used to have massive schools of kingfish and Spanish mackerel off our coast during the same time of the year that the shrimp were running, but these have disappeared in such numbers since the mid-80s.  Coincidently, that's the same time shrimping in the bay exploded.  Without sufficient food to sustain them, those schools will not stick around these parts.  I know it's not a proven theory, but worth considering.  It's almost comical that people go to the range markers now and get a handful of Spanish mackerel and think they are "thick".  They never saw the schools off Miami Beach that were so thick the mark on your fish finder looked like the bottom came up from 60' to 10'.  You'd look under your boat and it was mackerel stacked up like sardines.  I bet those mackerel were feeding on all the shrimp coming out of Biscayne Bay, until the shrimp got slaughtered by the wing netters.  Yes, I did it too, a few times. Not my favorite fishing to do by any means.  One thousand boats ready to run you over in a tight channel to scoop up a few shrimp was not worth the aggravation.
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,100 Captain
    A tiny bit of history... the first part I was told about by a very reliable source at the very first tackle shop I ever worked for (winter of 1972 was my starting date at Reef Tackle, 79th St Miami...).  The guy who taught me so much told me that in the 1950's local Miami drift boats had shrimp tanks on board - and their anglers used live shrimp mostly.  Each drifter would buy as many as 10,000 shrimp at a time from local sources... I can't imagine those days now.  I showed up here in 1971, fresh out of the service - and had never been here before at all so my local knowledge is limited... 

    Back in 1971 there were still so many shrimp in the Bay that indeed, migrating fish each year would stop at every ocean inlet and hang around for a month or two to feed on the great volume of shrimp the Bay provided on every outgoing tide.  The first few times I took a day to work on someone's private boat back then all we ever did was move out to the reel line within sight of Haulover inlet and use live shrimp, weighted or drifted for bottom fish of every description as well as pelagice (macks , kings , bonito , cobia) that came up to our chum line... 

    In that same era during the mackeral run (which started up each fall then went all the way to April and beyond)  anglers would line up shoulder to shoulder on the catwalk of the Bear Cut bridge (the last bridge that ended on Key Biscayne for those who don't know this area...), bailing spanish mackeral (every one back then had a tow sack that they'd water down to keep their catch fresh - there were that many fish every day...).  You could see and hear the gulls and terns over that bridge long before you could see the bridge - it was that kind of action.  During my early years here every winter during shrimp runs local folks would hang lanterns off of any low bridge and be able to dip net up a five gallon bucket full of shrimp for their families... All of that is long gone - and we're to blame for allowing it to occur... 

    Biscayne Bay, if allowed to recover could once again produce nearly that volume of food if we did our part.  Yes, the Bay isn't nearly as productive as it was fifty years ago -but we could fix that if we chose... The first thing I'd do after we stopped commercial shrimping in the Bay would be to prohibit any herbicides being used in any of the freshwater canals in Broward, Dade (and if we're really serious we'd have to include the Palm Beaches as well).   Every freshwater canal down here eventually drains into saltwater - and those herbicide residues (weedkillers being used for almost forty years now...) can't be doing anything good once they reach saltwaters... When I first came here all the weed-killing was done by mechanical harvesting - not weedkilling sprays... think about it... 

    I'll get down off of my soapbox now... everyone is free to re-post my remarks to any forum that will have them.  I'll never live long enough to see us fix these kinds of problems - but maybe, just maybe my grandkids will.... 
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • CaptJCaptJ Posts: 1,249 Officer
    I agree with everything Bob said. We grew up fishing the piers in the early 60's and to catch 100 mackerel in a day was not unusual. I graduated to boats in the late 60's and we would catch Kings till our arms fell off. From dawn to dusk. It was unreal. I hook and line fished the Mackerel runs through 1980 when the net boats came in and decimated the biomass. It was common for our Kingfish to have bellies full of shrimp. That's why they were here. Shrimping the bay killed a major source of food for the fish, and when the baits gone so are the fish. There are other causes of course, but it all starts with the food.
  • conchydongconchydong Pompano BeachPosts: 7,902 Admiral
    Now it’s a combination of multiple things not just the commercial wing netters but the loss of seagrass and the fresh water runoff with lots of pollutants.

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

  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,100 Captain
    If we halted all commercial shrimping in Biscayne Bay you’d be amazed at the turnaround in just a year or two.

    Yes, we have lots of other problems to work on but protecting the food fish need would be a dramatic first step...
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • Wra22Wra22 Posts: 209 Deckhand
    Captain Lemay,  do you know what government body has the authority to halt the commercial shrimping?
  • evernic1evernic1 NMBPosts: 180 Deckhand
    Fished Anglins pier, dania, Sunny isles (newport) and haulover pier 69-80...like said above on a good day 60-70 spanish...my personal best was 101 at dania in 1980...the macks hung around that pier for 6 weeks...in Jan-Feb.

    in 70's we used to catch 6-8 lb macks on live pilchards in Dec-Jan (not a lot) at Anglins , nothing like Sunny Isles which was famous for huge macks.

    in 1982 the macks moved in just off Miami Beach in 20-30 ft. south of haulover...stayed there for about 6 weeks till net boats from Stuart came down and wiped them out in 2 days...I read about the drift boats Reward fleet catching 1100-1200 per trip , thought that was a misprint until I called and verified...towed my 22 ft CC down from FTL and my buddy and I caught 82 from 2-6 lbs. in 3 hours just off the beach, on crocodile spoons and sidewinder jigs...we quit be cause we just got tired...could have caught another 100 if we wanted too. the Miami Herald wrote a piece about those net boats...they took their catch of thousands of macks into miami river to sell  and no one would buy...they had pics of them dumping all those fish in the river !!!

    I dip netted shrimp in the bay  east of the old herald building with good results from '95 to '07,  my best was 12-29-06
    two guys dipping we got the 5 gallon limit and quit after 2 hrs. They were thick, didn't want to take the net out...but had to after it got too heavy to control. No good trips since, and I have neem boatless since 12-2009...just got a new to me boat which is why I posted this...hoping for some shrimp this year...good luck to all
    And Capt. Lemay is correct...loss of seagrass due to pollution and netting are the culprits.
    New to me 9-17-2020 2008 Donzi 38 ZSF 3 X 300 Verados
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,100 Captain
    I believe it’s within the FWC’s power to control all of the shrimping within state waters... Getting players like the CCA and others interested hasn’t happened.  I brought the subject up with my local CCA a few years ago and was told they had more important items to pursue first (and they were probably right...).

    Protecting the food that our fisheries need around the state  is still very important though.  These days we no longer have the unity that allowed us to get the net ban amendment into place - after years of conservation failures...  

    I spoke up about commercial shrimping in Biscayne Bay the last time the state held a public hearing here in Miami - almost 25 years ago. Only three or four of us spoke against it while the auditorium was packed with shrimpers, their families, and local politicians that knew a sure thing when they saw it... You can guess how it turned out.
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • H20dadH20dad Posts: 2,353 Captain
    Km I believe it’s within the FWC’s power to control all of the shrimping within state waters... Getting players like the CCA and others interested hasn’t happened.  I brought the subject up with my local CCA a few years ago and was told they had more important items to pursue first (and they were probably right...).

    Protecting the food that our fisheries need around the state  is still very important though.  These days we no longer have the unity that allowed us to get the net ban amendment into place - after years of conservation failures...  

    I spoke up about commercial shrimping in Biscayne Bay the last time the state held a public hearing here in Miami - almost 25 years ago. Only three or four of us spoke against it while the auditorium was packed with shrimpers, their families, and local politicians that knew a sure thing when they saw it... You can guess how it turned out.
    The fwc doesn’t believe in limiting commercial fishing. They will never do it. 

    Btw, my grandfather used to drive down from Kentucky each winter to spend time in Ft. Lauderdale. He fished the drift boats and once caught a 76lb sailfish on a shrimp, his biggest. Imagine doing that today. 
  • catchemupcatchemup Posts: 359 Deckhand
    edited December 2020 #19
    A tiny bit of history... the first part I was told about by a very reliable source at the very first tackle shop I ever worked for (winter of 1972 was my starting date at Reef Tackle, 79th St Miami...).  The guy who taught me so much told me that in the 1950's local Miami drift boats had shrimp tanks on board - and their anglers used live shrimp mostly.  Each drifter would buy as many as 10,000 shrimp at a time from local sources... I can't imagine those days now.  I showed up here in 1971, fresh out of the service - and had never been here before at all so my local knowledge is limited... 


    Bob you likely worked for the Reef's owner Richard [he really went by the name of D--k but it gets censored in this post] ...a really nice guy who lost his son who used to work for him in Viet Nam. I worked Haulover drift boats from the late 50's to mid 60's. In the winter I'd order large quantities of live shrimp that D - - k would deliver to the drift boats at Haulover in the same type of truck that shrimpers use to deliver to bait shops. We'd put the shrimp in a large recirculating tank on the Much K. We would sell them to the anglers a dozen at a time. Trying to remember to back then...think sometimes we put them in small buckets and other times the anglers would come to the tank to get rebaited up. The crew would free line large shrimp for kings. The shrimp were used in the winter only. Mullet strips were provided free and bally sold for an extra charge as well. BTW, we'd sell the kings for 12 cents a pound to fish markets  and some restaurants but if the market was overloaded  then we'd only get 10 1/2 cents. I left the 63 ft drift boats for a larger 437 ft guided missile destroyer in the mid 60's.
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,100 Captain
    You got it... I worked for Richard Weigle (his son Gordon also worked there as well...).  The guy who taught me the most was Tim Murray ( a dead ringer for that chicken guy, Col Sanders).  Serving drift boats was no longer happening by then.  We also had young Pete Tyson who’d stop by and rig dozens of fresh ballyhoo for the shop whenever needed....

    Miami Shores was still a premium residential area - but 79th wasn’t very nice at all... That little shop was a great learning place.  After a year or so I went to work on my first charter boat out of Haulover, the Time Off Too, and eventually up to the Castaways docks - learning every day...  

    It was a great time for a single guy.  Miami was a much different place back then.
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • CaptJCaptJ Posts: 1,249 Officer
    You got it... I worked for Richard Weigle (his son Gordon also worked there as well...).  The guy who taught me the most was Tim Murray ( a dead ringer for that chicken guy, Col Sanders).  Serving drift boats was no longer happening by then.  We also had young Pete Tyson who’d stop by and rig dozens of fresh ballyhoo for the shop whenever needed....

    Miami Shores was still a premium residential area - but 79th wasn’t very nice at all... That little shop was a great learning place.  After a year or so I went to work on my first charter boat out of Haulover, the Time Off Too, and eventually up to the Castaways docks - learning every day...  

    It was a great time for a single guy.  Miami was a much different place back then.
    It sure was. Aside from the fishing, back in the 50's-60's Miami was probably one of the best places on the planet to grow up in. Paradise for kids (and grownups). Didn't need someone to tell you how to do the right thing - you knew how. Local governments worked for the residents, not the developers or their own agendas. Your neighbors looked out for you and we knew everyone in our schools and neighborhoods. Used to leave all our tackle on the pier when we went for lunch at the Hojo and the adults fishing there would make sure everything was there when we got back. By the 80's I had to make sure my rods were secure on the party boat, or they would get legs. We live in a different world now where common sense such as limiting the baitfish/shrimp catching just can't happen. I did some commercial hook and line fishing in my youth and understand the notion that the rent has to be paid, but at what cost? I also don't spray my lawn or dump chemicals down the drain. Florida is just a small picture of the way society relates to things now.
  • HAIR-LARIOUSHAIR-LARIOUS Posts: 160 Deckhand
    Is there shrimping running now . I believe we are on are 8-10 th cold front of the winter this season . What do you think ?
  • xeniaxenia Posts: 827 Officer
    According to my contact on the river, they got them pretty good Dec 24-26.  Just a few boats but best got around 1,000 lbs, but nothing since then.
  • HAIR-LARIOUSHAIR-LARIOUS Posts: 160 Deckhand
    Thank you for you intel much appreciated ! 
  • seaweaselseaweasel Posts: 37 Deckhand
    went to Bear cut last night at the start of the outgoing, zero shrimp seen.  

    Hopefully they will show up soon.  
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,100 Captain
    Sometimes at the beginning, sometimes towards the end of a tide... Only way to know is to be there.

    I’m not a shrimper - just a guy that’s done years of night fishing for snook and tarpon that feed on the shrimp every winter and early summer...
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • deckapedeckape flaPosts: 24 Deckhand
    Got to go to know what's happening. By the time you hear about it, it's over. Packup and go. 
  • seaweaselseaweasel Posts: 37 Deckhand
    we'll keep going - still more time in shrimp season. Kids loved seeing all the other stuff (eagle rays, glow worms, etc) you see at night and the grunts kept them in business. 
  • baccaracbaccarac Posts: 118 Deckhand
    In February March and part of April go to the Titusville new Smyrna area for real shrimping. Look into it. I live in pompano and wouldn’t bother with South Florida Shrimping
  • evernic1evernic1 NMBPosts: 180 Deckhand
    baccarac said:
    In February March and part of April go to the Titusville new Smyrna area for real shrimping. Look into it. I live in pompano and wouldn’t bother with South Florida Shrimping
    Thanks for the tip...but my boat is on the water in Miami...not really feasible to run up there :)
    but you're right about miami shrimping...hasn't been much since 2007 or so...
    New to me 9-17-2020 2008 Donzi 38 ZSF 3 X 300 Verados
  • qotsaautopilotqotsaautopilot Posts: 67 Deckhand
    Sometimes at the beginning, sometimes towards the end of a tide... Only way to know is to be there.

    I’m not a shrimper - just a guy that’s done years of night fishing for snook and tarpon that feed on the shrimp every winter and early summer...
    Would love to get on some reliable tarpon fishing?  I know it’s  done during the winter using shrimp as bait.  Any tips?  How when and where?
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