Holy smokes, are the mangrove snappers ever biting! We are catching them day and night, on the surface, on the bottom and every other way you can imagine. Ten feet of water, 70 feet, coral bottom, wrecks, it just doesn’t matter. We are getting them everywhere. It really doesn’t seem to matter what bait you use, but the one constant factor is that you need light line and a small hook. 15 pound test is almost too heavy. 12 or even 10 is best. Most of the fish we are getting are in the 20 to 30 foot range, but it seems as though anywhere we go, we get them.
The yellowtails are still there as well. We have been getting them mixed in with the mangroves both day and night. I have been getting reports from charter boats who have been targeting the ‘tails and not searching for the mangroves that the yellowtail bite on the edge of the reef is red hot. Anywhere from 70 to 90 feet has been producing I hear.
We have also been seeing a few mutton snappers as well. The size has been quite nice too. We haven’t caught too many little ones. Most are in the 5 to 15 pound range. We are getting them on ballyhoo plugs mainly, but a couple have fallen victim to live pilchards.
I really can’t report a whole lot more. We basically have been targeting “grovers” for the last couple of weeks both day and night. I have been seeing a few sailfish free-jumping out there. We haven’t caught one in a while but you could most likely find one or two if you really tried to.
I expect the mangrove bite to sustain from now until the next full moon. That means that you only have a few weeks left to get out there and put together a nice catch of mangrove snappers for the dinner table!
Thanks for readin’!
Things are really picking up out there for us! I had a chance to night fish twice this past week and I absolutely can’t complain! The big yellowtails are biting very consistently on the wrecks near the edge of the reef and the mangroves are really starting to show up.
As for the yellowtails we are catching them every single night in the 1 to 4 pound range. The numbers of fish vary based on the conditions, but we get at least a handful every trip. Tuesday night, for example, they were very hard to catch because the current was going right underneath the boat. This makes it almost impossible to succeed at yellow tailing. The ones we caught were very nice, but not very numerous.
The main highlight of the summer is the mangrove snapper spawn, which is almost in full effect! We have been seeing them a bit more each and every night. A week ago we were only getting a few, and last night we got 30 or so of them. These numbers will continue to grow for the next few weeks, then stay steady for a couple weeks before declining. In about a week we will be catching or boat limit more often than not on the night trips.
The “grovers” are very active in the day time as well, so long as you get right on top of them. We caught about 50 of them on Monday in the daylight in 22 feet of water. I really enjoy targeting them on the party boat because in my opinion they are better eating than a yellowtail and more fun to fight.
Going back to the nights, Capt. Ron has been putting on quite a show with permit! Catching permit is something that most people would never, every think about doing on a night trip, but Capt. Ron has found one wreck that is holding them in huge numbers. They are biting on live crabs casted out of the lights of the boat. The average size is about 15 pounds but they have boated them up to 40 in the last few weeks. I don’t believe these hard fighters will be around too much longer, so if you ever wanted to catch a permit at night right now is the time to do it!
Capt. Shannon on the “Satisfaction” out of Robbie’s had a couple of really successful night charters this week. He is only charging $500 for 5 hours and catching really nice yellowtails, mangrove snappers and muttons. He likes to fish with a combination of fresh ballyhoo and live pilchards for the night snappers. If you are interested in getting out there with him you can call 305-664-8070.
On the couple of occasions we fished the deep wrecks lately we came up with mutton snappers up to 12 pounds and a gag grouper that tipped the scales at 25 pounds! Those deep water fish are out there in full force right now; don’t miss it if you have the means to go after them!
I look forward to putting you on some fish,