The Florida Keys

Florida Keys Fishing Report week of 3/6/2017
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Any and all offshore fishing has been pretty much involving the Islamorada Hump area. There is a good bite of Blackfin Tuna and Amberjack season is open. The Tuna are for the most part being caught on trolled feathers. The more tiring method to attract the Tuna is to deep jig with Butterfly jigs. Captains fishing the Tuna look for the little black birds fluttering up and down on the water to tell them where the Tuna are feeding. As for the Amberjack, they are being caught on heavy conventional gear by dropping a big bait such as a Small Tuna or Bonito down deep to the top of the seamount. There have been a few Dolphin reported caught.
The month of March most certainly came in “like a Lion” as winds were blowing a strong 25 knots and gusting into the thirties. On the few fishable days’ reef boats did quite well on King Mackerel and there were Sailfish caught also. Captain Benny Spaulding on his Play Baby charter boat had a nice day on the reef catching Yellowtail Snapper, Cero Mackerel and Mutton Snapper. Captain Chris on the Dog House released two Sailfish. Reef anglers should look for good Sailfish and King mackerel action throughout the month and there will be some Cobia available too.
Gulf and Bay:
The best of both worlds, or seasons as it were is that the Spanish Mackerel are still going pretty good most days and the Seatrout have begun to show up in all the favorite places. Captain Lou Brubaker fished the Gulf and got into a good bite of Spanish mackerel and had a nice catch of Lane and Mangrove Snappers too. Back in the bay in the Sandy Key area the Trout are hitting jigs tipped with Shrimp or with a Berkley Gulp bait attached. There are Ladyfish and Jacks mixed in with the Trout to provide additional action. There have been a few guides fishing for Tarpon with some success on the nice days and there are Sharks adding to the excitement also. The Trout bite will get better as the weeks pass and then Snapper action will also improve as the water warms.
Flats, Backcountry and Flamingo:
In Everglades National Park in and around Flamingo and out to Cape Sable many Guides made it a priority to catch a slot size legal Snook as the Snook season opened March 1st. Baiting the Snook with Pilchards, Pinfish or Shrimp there were fair to good catches recorded and some Redfish in the mix too. On the rare nice calm and warm day some pursued the Tarpon even though the fever is here, the Tarpon need more consistently stable and warm days to really turn on. There are Trout scattered all over the Flamingo area and they will be found in grass basins or little drains that move water and bait to and from the banks.