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New Flamingo Reports

Can't belive that there were over a hundred boats down at Flamingo, Fri, sat &Sun. Both houseboats gone from the Marina and yet no fishing reports. Whats going on? We had a great day on the water on Fri. Couldn*t have had a nicer day. The fishing was on the slow side. Trout, snapper, lady fish, shark and tons of catfish. Now, lets hear something. Capt. George the voice of experience


  • PoplinFabricationPoplinFabrication Posts: 341 Deckhand

    I didn't think that they were still renting out house boats are they back and available?

  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,854 Captain

    You'd have to contact the marina store to find out since that's where the concession is run from... At present the marina store still isn't open - but I am seeing rental 'yaks and canoes - so that part of the operation is up and running. Don't have a clue about the houseboats but if they're not at the dock they may be getting sorted out after last fall's hurricane. Houseboats don't do well in high winds.... If you call the Visitor's Center (305) 242-7700, they may be able to provide a current number for the folks that run that concession. Good luck, and post up what you learn - there will be anglers paying attention since this is the time of year for houseboats in the backcountry...

    We were there as well on Friday but had a frustrating day, fly-fishing tarpon... No bites, no joy - but we did find good numbers of fish in Whitewater and also out along the coast at Ponce... Only saw one skiff hooked up all day long (and there were quite a few working big fish with flies...). Two days later (Sunday) I was over on the 10K side of things and it was slow for us there as well (but that was probably the doofus poling the boat - me....). My next outings are scheduled for the night scene in Biscayne - hopefully the wind will lay down by then....

    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • BRSGATORBRSGATOR Posts: 13 Greenhorn

    I was there on Sunday.

    Caught a limit of nice trout and reds pitching live bait in creek mouths on the incoming tide. Ran the buoys looking for triple tail. Found one keeper but he wouldn't bite. Struck out looking for Mr. Snook in Whitewater Bay.

  • hhfishermanhhfisherman Posts: 181 Deckhand

    ... and yet no fishing reports. Whats going on?

    It probably has something to do with the new format. I noticed the number of fishing reports drop dramatically.

  • TXWahooTXWahoo Posts: 572 Officer
    edited February 2018 #6
    It was crowded on Saturday.  9 keeper trout with one a fat 23", maybe another half dozen small trout.  Saw some nice reds and a tarpon but couldn't catch them.  Caught 1 small snook and turned a couple of ladyfish into two 5-6ft lemon sharks. 
  • SeapromptSeaprompt Posts: 6 Greenhorn
    I talked to the Marina a month or so ago...houseboats are damaged beyond repair, so it will probably take 4 or 5 years to replace them like last time. Went last Friday on the inside, saw a lot of tarpon but no bites. Caught a few snook and trout, ran to the way back and got a bass and cichlid...very slow.
  • NickNutNickNut Posts: 230 Deckhand
    Are the camp grounds at flamingo open yet, or is it still relegated to the Long Pine Key campground? Anyone know if the chickees are available?
  • PoplinFabricationPoplinFabrication Posts: 341 Deckhand
    I heard that there is someone renting houseboats again does anyone have contact information for them? 
  • captain splashcaptain splash Posts: 6 Greenhorn
    I was down there in mid Feb and again Mar 15-16. Been fishing Flamingo for over 40 yrs and as slow as I’ve seen it this time of the year. In Feb slow in Whitewater and further inside. Found birds and bait along the Gulf and finally got it going. Lots of big trout and a 35” snook. 

    This past week was mostly the same except the Gulf was muddy and we didn’t find anything. Found trout in Whitewater though. 

    Over all the fishing is disappointing. I’m thinking the loss of the grass flats has taken its toll. Out front is a huge muddy mess. The back held in there but not as productive now. Anyone have ave any inside information from the NPS or the SFWMD?

  • captain splashcaptain splash Posts: 6 Greenhorn
    I saw a house boat being towed in by the customer. Apparently the house boats are being rented but aren’t in great condition. 
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,854 Captain
    Doubt that was one of the rental houseboats since we were told that it would be months before they were back in service...

    Yes, the Florida Bay side is in trouble - but the interior is in really good shape comparatively.  I was at Flamingo last Wednesday and Thursday and we were fly-fishing in poor conditions (understatement...).  We did find a few big snook up shallow -mostly buy poling up onto fish we couldn't see... Results?  poor- but all of that was the cold waters and muddy areas stirred up by the wind (Tarpon Bay up to the north had perfectly clear waters - but just cold..). On Saturday and Sunday I was over at Chokoloskee and we did pretty well - mostly because the weather had moderated and we were able to fish in warmer waters... My angler on Saturday caught a pair of nice reds - my youngest angler on Sunday was able to sight-cast at a school of black drum with a lure and hooked up with two good sized fish.  Not bad at age 13 to take a 14 and a 16lb drum - all on his own.... That same day we found ourselves in large numbers of permit just a bit offshore - all of them finning out at the surface (no joy -but we didn't have any small lively crabs with us..). 

    I'll have a proper report late today with lots of pics - but like I said it was all about the weather this past week - and yes, it's been a strange year as far as weather goes... I don't think the fish know where to be with all the ups and downs of wind and temperature.... All of that will end as we get closer to April... I hope.

    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • shallow thinkershallow thinker Posts: 50 Greenhorn
    I've done 6 trips since the hurricane.  Choko seems close to normal except for the exposed shorelines that got torn up.  Whitewater fished pretty normal as well.  My last 3 outings have been out front using my boat to ferry a canoe to different no motor zones around the cape.  The bay waters looked like crap each time.  It looks yellow/muddy to me with very low visibility even in calm conditions.  Not good.  Anyone venture east towards the bights lately?
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,854 Captain
    Don't bother... I know other guides who've quit fishing that area entirely... Wish it weren't so.
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • captain splashcaptain splash Posts: 6 Greenhorn
    Snake Bight historically has been one of my favorite spots. BUT the last year or so, really terrible. I'm sure it simply a victim of the grass die off. Muddy and without the grass, it will stay that way plus fish aren't holding there. A real shame. 

    Thanks Capt. Lemay for the report. You have great knowledge of the area and certainly are accurate in your evaluation of what is going on. My last visit to Whitewater and the back country N and E of there and up to Tarpon  Bay, Otter Creek indicated to me also that the water seems good, but cold. I had from 67 to 70. April should be much improved.
  • Flatwater witchFlatwater witch Posts: 606 Officer
    NickNut said:
    Are the camp grounds at flamingo open yet, or is it still relegated to the Long Pine Key campground? Anyone know if the chickees are available?

    Flamingo backcountry chickees are open.

    North backcountry chickees still closed.

    Beach sites open.

  • BobberBobber Posts: 943 Officer
    No Willy Willy for you Jack
  • Flatwater witchFlatwater witch Posts: 606 Officer

    Camped February at New Turkey. Beautiful, protected beach site.

    Every night had a couple sail boats come in.

    New moon w/ negative tides.

    Found a few fish, mostly trout.

    Gags, few snook, several of the usual suspects.

    Didn't see a red for 3 days.

    Fished front and back. 

  • BobberBobber Posts: 943 Officer
    Sounds like my February, except I camp outta Rod and Gun anymore. No kumbaya campfire songs but then no Nick snoring like a sumbiatch either. 
  • TXWahooTXWahoo Posts: 572 Officer
    Last Saturday (March 31st) out front was the worst water conditions I've seen at Flamingo in the short time (3 years) I've been fishing it.  We managed to catch 5 undersized trout and a couple of catfish on shrimp.  
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,854 Captain
    Go through the interior to the Shark river area and fish north or south... Things on the Gulf coast are just fine.  The Florida Bay side is in very bad condition by comparison... Wish it weren’t so.  The only time we won’t fish the coast is on a west wind.
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • gladesrunnergladesrunner Posts: 122 Deckhand
    I was out this past Saturday and the Sunday before that, both afternoon trout trips with kids........we did great out front, but only once we found "cleaner" water with good flow. Not only is the water quality out front horrible, I'm seeing new/fresh floating mats of dead grass. That's typical in the dead of summer, but this feels too early.

    The grass die-offs have left huge areas bare with nothing to hold down the bottom sediment, so any type of chop stirs everything up suspending tons of sediment in the water column. That area will be in bad shape until the grass situation changes. 
  • chasinfinschasinfins Posts: 139 Deckhand
    So sad to read these reports of flamingo dying. I loved fishing snakebight of the kayak
    follow me on instagram @woodzandwater
  • Flatwater witchFlatwater witch Posts: 606 Officer
    Bobber said:
    Sounds like my February, except I camp outta Rod and Gun anymore. No kumbaya campfire songs but then no Nick snoring like a sumbiatch either. 

    Hello Bob,

    Yes I enjoy "hotel camping", but if it's just me paying, $500+

    can go a long way towards other expenses if I pitch the tent.

  • ag10sag10s Posts: 49 Deckhand
    Hey guys, want to come down and fish Flamingo for a few days in October.  Going to tow my boat down from Tampa. Trying to figure out lodging.  Any ideas? 
  • Pucker FactorPucker Factor Posts: 875 Officer
    The seagrass had begun to grow back since the die off that began in July 2015, but Irma set that back considerably. It will return.
  • fasttimesfasttimes Posts: 177 Deckhand
    Took a flight down to the Caymans this weekend and flew out of MIA. On the way out we flew right over Key Largo area. From the plane you could see from about the 18-mile stretch all the way over to Flamingo area the water was a nasty milky white where it was all stirred up. Seemed to clear as you got down towards Islamorada. Really sad to see.  I hope the bay rebounds quickly before we destroy it for good. 
  • Pucker FactorPucker Factor Posts: 875 Officer
    Milky water is not necessarily a sign of poor water quality and the northeast and eastern parts of the bay are historically more susceptible to wind driven turbidity. I believe it’s been pretty windy lately in general. 
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