Dolphin fishing remains hit or miss, with mostly small numbers of schoolie size fish coming back to the docks. Although elusive, there are some gaffers and slammers to be had as well.
However, blackfin tuna fishing at the humps is excellent right now, with anglers catching good size fish in the 12- to 15-pound class along with profuse numbers of smaller footballs. Butterfly jigging, trolling and fishing live baits are all productive techniques.
Reef fishing for all the snappers is a great way to spend a few hours on the water with tasty rewards on the dinner plate.
This time of year, we have to go a little deeper for larger fish, but there’s still plenty of action in the 30- to 50-foot depths for yellowtails in the 16- to 18-inch range and good size mangroves going three to five pounds.
Muttons are coming off the wrecks in 100-plus feet of water in good numbers and are always a bonus to a day of snapper fishing. You may also hook into a hefty amberjack while you’re there.
Again, because of the warming waters, the grouper have moved out to the deep edge of the reef, but it’s worth the trip to put a nice black or red in the fish box.
The night mangrove bite has really turned on in the 40- to 60-foot depths, with lots of three- to six-pound fish taken on pinfish and pilchards. They’re also taking chunks of ballyhoo drifted back in the slick.
Capt. Chris Johnson is a member of the Yamaha National Fishing Team and specializes in offshore, gulf/bay, reef/wreck, shark and tarpon fishing with SeaSquared Charters out of the 7 Mile Marina in Marathon. You can reach him at 305.743.5305, SeaSquared@bellsouth.net and www.SeaSquared-Charters.com.