Today’s update is on pier fishing or in this case bridge fishing. The Cobia and Tarpon are being hooked at the 41 bridges, with cut bait or lures that look like an eel green, white or brown lure colors.
For you boaters, Turtle Bay is loaded with Sea Trout. Use a 1/8 ounce yellow or bright green jig head, with a 3 inch Gulp new penny shrimp body, placed 30 inches below a poppin cork for the most fish. Heading into Turtle Bay, go past the manatee signs and then head up wind. You will want to drift this flat for the Trout. Then cast out a good ways and pop the cork and watch it disappear. IOW Fish On!
Last week the inshore fishing continued to be excellent for Redfish and Snook together with a number of other species, including but not limited to, Seatrout, Spanish Mackerel, Flounder and Mangrove Snappers. The most productive days were the ones prior to last weekend (October 24), before the cool front approached and the east winds started to blow.
Nonetheless, with the full moon approaching, most all of my charter clients were able to secure Redfish and Snook catches. Pictured here is Mr. Wayne Hasson of Naples holding a nice Snook he caught while ‘free-lining’ a small Pilchard on a circle hook. Not to be out-done, his son, Davis Hasson, landed a nice Redfish on a large shrimp suspended under a popping cork in heavy structure, close to ‘Bird’ Key in Pine Island Sound. Davis caught two nice size Black Tip Sharks to top off the morning. The cold front made fishing that morning tough, but we all enjoyed the time together on the water and look forward to our next adventure.
The full moon is upon and so long as warm weather prevails, fishing should continue be good for all species. Even though the harvesting of Snook will close on November 01, anglers may still target and enjoy the catch. Lots of small pilchards are in the area and are my preferred bait (free-lined on a circle hook) for Snook. I suggest using a cast net with a ¼” mess, otherwise the baits will ‘Christmas-tree’ and require lots of extra work to get them to release and still keep them alive.
Redfish will continue to inhabit the flats and backcountry so long as the warm weather holds. Other species such as Spanish Mackerel and Seatrouts are here in bigger sizes with all species available for harvesting. Be sure and get the FWC Regulations and Rules governing the size, methods allowed and any other requirements or restrictions.
In closing, Vicki and I will be at the Ft. Myers Boat Show (Downtown Convention Center) on November 19-22. I will be doing seminars as well. My seminars will explain the many techniques that I utilize to catch inshore species. Be sure and stop by and say hi!
This is Captain Terry Fisher of Fish Face Charters, LLC saying so long and tight lines! Obtain charter information at www.fishfacecharters.com or call me direct at 239-357-6829 with any questions or to schedule a charter on your vessel or mine.
Spanish Mackerel and Spotted Sea Trout are both starting to move into Charlotte Harbor in good numbers. The fishing is getting better by the day and these wonderful cool mornings are really helping. The rain has been slowing down and the rivers are flowing less and less, so this week and next we are going to see some great days for catching. Now if the wind would back off a little it would be perfect!
One of our Fishin Frank customers wrote in on their weekend!
I was out on Friday and Saturday to see what was hitting. Reds are still the play down here in the mangroves and the smaller ones seem to be feeding on shrimp. Large Jacks are starting to move in and strike hard. We have also had some Snook but they’ve been on the small side. Lots of small Snappers have been working the canals and mangroves north of the Bridge.
Here are some pics of my 11 year old bending her rod in the saltwater for the first time. She had a blast! She says, “much bigger fish than the Bass” she had mastered in the local lakes, lol. Here are some pics of her catches:
(October 19, 2015) Ft. Myers Beach to Charlotte Harbor – Fishing was good during the past week during the new moon phase, especially on the grass flats from Ft. Myers Beach all the way up to Charlotte Harbor. Areas holding Turtle Grass from 3 to 6 foot of water produced lots of action for those looking for Seatrout, Spanish Mackerel, Jack Crevalle and Lady Fish. Incoming tides produced the best all around fishing times for the above mentioned species as well as Redfish and Snook in the back country areas. Offshore anglers reported lots of success when the winds allowed them to fish.
Pictured here are sisters, Lauren Binkley (14) and Jenna Binkley (13) of Ashland City, Tennessee, each holding one of many Seatrout caught under a cork on the flats, at Mile Marker 13 just off the Intracoastal Water Way. They also caught lots of Spanish Mackerel, Lady Fish and Jack Crevalle. These young ladies love the outdoors both for fishing and hunting. They will be back in Tennessee just in time for the opening day of ‘deer season’ on October 31st. Good hunting ladies!
Lots of Redfish are still in the area and large shrimps seem to be the bait of choice (at least for my charters). I am having such success using them, that I have not taken the time to try much else. Normally, cut Pinfish, Lady Fish hold the balance of my arsenal, but have not been as effective of late. The Redfish are everywhere, but with the dark, brackish, high water due to rain runoffs around Punta Rassa they have been much harder to locate. Nonetheless, James Binkley (Lauren and Jenna’s father) is pictured holding a nice Redfish he caught at the top of the tide beside a shallow, oyster flanked, mangrove island.
Areas at the ‘northern’ half of the Intracoastal Water Way (between the power lines and Charlotte Harbor) have been my most productive areas for Redfish. I work exclusively around the mangrove islands on incoming tides. Pictured here is long time client and friend, Mr. Leland Longstreth of Ft. Myers holding one of several Redfish he caught a couple of days ago on the back side of the new moon phase. Lee and I go after these ‘bruts’ and Snook at least four times a year it seems. His friend, Mr. Tom Richardson of Ft. Myers accompanies us on several of these adventures and is pictured with one of his Redfish. Nice job guys!
In closing, Snook season is still open and there are lots around. Redfish should stay plentiful at least through the month of October. Look for them to thin out however as mid November arrives. Now is the time to go fishing for Redfish and Snook!
This is Captain Terry Fisher and 1st Mate Vicki, wishing everyone ‘tighter lines’! We will be at our booth (FISH FACE CHARTERS) inside the convention center during the November `19-22′ Boat Show. I will be doing some fishing seminars as well. See you there. Contact me by phone at 239-357-6829 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions. Check out my website at www.fishfacecharters.com.
(Ft. Myers Beach to Charlotte Harbor) My 1st Mate (Vicki) and I recently returned from our ‘ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL FISHING AND DIVING EXPEDITION’ in Greece and Italy. I am happy to be back in SW Florida to do some serious ‘Redfishing’ and Snook fishing. October is the month! As reported prior to traveling, I was on them before I left and I have been on them since my return of October 1. Prior to departing on September 1, I had the pleasure of taking out three gentlemen from The Quarry in Naples. They are all members of the Quarry Fishing Club and they all caught their share of big Redfish. Pictured here are Tom Bothe (center), Jim Rainey (right side) and Bill Flister each holding one of their many catches. Bill (pictured on the left) is also the President of The Quarry Fishing Club, of which I plan on doing a seminar at their clubhouse later this month.
The ‘NEW’ moon phase is upon us offering up some strong currents and hopefully lots more action over the next week or so. That being said however, with all of the rain, tide levels should remain higher than projected past the middle of the month, allowing access to locations that these game fish seek for food and extra protection. The balance of October will bring in a ‘FULL’ moon phase, keeping good fishing opportunities alive all month. Target both Snook and Redfish with artificial or live presentations on the incoming or outgoing tides around the mangroves.
Moreover, October is simply a great month to fish. Good tides, good wind directions and many species, such as Seatrouts, Flounders, Spanish Mackerels, Mangrove Snappers, Jack Crevalles and the ‘Resident’ Tarpon continuing to be very active. They will all hit shrimp on the flats and around the mangroves under a popping cork presentation.
This is Captain Terry Fisher of Fish Face Charters wishing everyone ‘tighter’ lines! Check out my website at www.fishfacecharters.com for more fishing tips on the ‘links’ as well as charter information. I am easily reached via email at email@example.com or call me direct at 239-357-6829 to book an ‘October Redfish or Snook Charter’!
As I have said before, there are lots of Redfish out in the Harbor. We spent 3 hours fishing the east side, about 3/4 of a mile north of Pirate Harbor, and caught 6 Reds, 3 Snappers, a huge Bonnet Shark, and 3 Snook. Oh and a couple of Catfish and a Needlefish. They were small, but not a bad way to spend a few hours. We caught everything, except the Snook, on live shrimp either using a sinker or under a Poppin Cork. The Snook was caught on a Storm Twitch.
The Fishing is quite good right now and the weather is perfect. The water is very dark. The strange thing, and yes there is always something – a Pompano jumped out of the water, 15 feet in front of me just to tease me. I could almost hear that Pompano blowing raspberries at me.
Seminole, FL – Congressman David Jolly (FL-13) has introduced legislation that will lead to a more accurate count of Red Snapper and other reef fish in the Gulf of Mexico. The bill, called the Gulf Red Snapper Data Improvement Act, will allow for third-party data collection of fish populations to be used for federal stock assessments, which could ultimately lead to longer Red Snapper fishing seasons for the recreational sectors.
“Many in the fishing community, from private anglers, to charter, to commercial, have questioned the government’s stock assessments. My bill will give each of them a seat at the table. Third-party data collection will expand the information available to the government, particularly Red Snapper, and improve the data used to determine fishing seasons,” Jolly said.
The Gulf Red Snapper Data Improvement Act designates $10 million annually for third-party data collection of Gulf Red Snapper and other Gulf reef species. The data collection program will be managed by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Southeast Regional Office located in St. Petersburg, Florida.
“This will improve our knowledge of fisheries stocks and if the research shows a larger fish population than the government suggests, this will open the door for a longer fishing season for species like Red Snapper. And a longer Snapper season is an economic and quality of life win throughout our community, positively impacting everyone from local scientists committed to the protection of fish populations, to recreational anglers, to charter operators, to businesses that depend on fishing tourism like hotel and restaurant operators,” Jolly noted.
A member of the powerful House Committee on Appropriations, Jolly was able to secure similar language in the Fiscal Year 2016 House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Bill earlier this year.
For additional information regarding this legislation please contact Preston Rudie, Communications Dir. for Representative Jolly at (727) 418-7722. You may also click this link to visit Representative Jolly’s website.
In the area around Boca Pass and the straights right across to Burnt Store, schools of bait fish like Thread Fins and Glass Minnows are moving in with the tide, and then move back to the gulf as the tide heads out. Spanish Mackerel can be found under these schools of bait. Below that you can find Ladyfish & Jacks, and under those you will find Sharks. Yes there are layers of fish, and they can be found in the gulf near Trembley Reef or any of the closer ones, during the last half of the outgoing tide and the first third of the incoming tide.
Once the water starts moving in hard, the bait will follow the saltwater into the Harbor and will give you a shot at some reel fun fishing, with fast and steady bites. Light tackle and a small steel leader are a good idea to use. Once your bait gets below the regular fish, you’ll find the Black Nose and Black Tip Sharks. These are a ball on the light spinning tackle.
There are red fish near Burnt Store. Yes, the big red fish are schooling along the bar, and they have been moving from just north of Pirate Harbor down to Two Pines. The Z-man scented paddler, in either the Bad Shad or Root Beer gold colors are your best bet. I use a Z-man jig head but you may rig them with a weed less worm hook if you like. The method I use with the Z-man is sort of like casting with dead/cut bait. Watch for red fish movement, and waves that are moving a bit different from the other waves. Cast it out in front of the moving water and let it sit for a minute, then give it a good twitch and take up the slack and twitch and repeat.
If I do not see fish moving which is often the case, I stay half a cast away from the sand bar and try to cast over the bar to the other side, and then slowly twitch the Z-man across the top of the bar and back all the way to the boat.
For those that prefer to use cut bait, just cast and let it sit. This is dead stinky stuff. Hot dark water means I will not cast out reel in and cast. If I feel the need to move my bait, it will only be a couple of inches at a time. Let the stink of the bait do it’s job.
Here’s a little news for the weird fishin wise. The canals in Port Charlotte are starting to hold fish. Snook is a given. September is when snook fishing should start getting good. But flounder, sheep head, red fish and mangrove snappers, are all in the canals in what could be called fishable numbers.
With all of the rain and the water being so dark, to tell the truth, there should be almost no fish in the canals. The rivers are running at flood stages and the water is so very fresh, and there is even a little salt near the bottom. Why are these fish moving into the canals?
The answers to why the fish are here in the canals could be the temperature. The canal temps have been lower than normal for this time of year, because of the rain and cloud cover. The clouds keep the sun’s radiation from heating up the water, and the water being in the mid 80’s is where it has to be for the fish to move back into the canals. This is rare but not unheard of. With so much rain and clouds, the waters are being kept cool.
The fish have been eating live shrimp, which is their #1 choice, and live pin fish, which is their #2 choice. Cut bait fish or dead shrimp are both a close 3rd. Lures would be D.O.A. shrimp or buck tail jigs.
Each month, the Cape Coral Cruise Club takes a scheduled cruise to a different marina in SW Florida and stays for several days enjoying the area’s amenities and hospitality. We do that nine times a year along with an extended cruise each Spring. We take a break during the summer months of July and August as many members leave the area. However, sometimes a marina offers the Club a special off-season discounted rate to visit their marina.
That happened when the Pink Shell Marina and Resort in Fort Myers Beach offered the Club an attractive discounted rate for staying at its marina during the month of August. I won’t say how low the offer was, but it was certainly an offer we couldn’t refuse. So, it was decided to organize an unofficial cruise to the marina for any interested Club members.
Unofficially, nine boats made the trip, and this article is the unofficial account of that trip. Over the days of August 20th to 23rd we scheduled this cruise to arrive Thursday and depart on Sunday so that some members who may work during the week could join the fun.
Eight boats arrived Thursday, and one boat arrived Friday. The marina either coincidentally or intentionally assigned us slips that resulted in all boats being lined up from the smallest to the largest as you walked down the dock. Yellow Club burgees flew on the bow of each boat sporting our club mascot – a dolphin holding a drink of some sort (an adult beverage, I would surmise). After safely docking Thursday, sixteen club members convened in the late afternoon for cocktails, snacks and conversation.
For dinner, we had CIFO’s. (Circular Italian Food Objects). 5 large pizzas were picked up and we dined in the Pink Shell conference room provided by the resort. After dinner, I hosted a game of Jeopardy created on my laptop and projected onto the wall. Special categories such as “Local Waters” and “Cape Coral History” were developed. (For example, are you aware that the first traffic signal in Cape Coral was placed at the intersection of Cape Coral Pkwy and Coronado in 1969?)
On Friday, we again provided members breakfast, and then everyone went off to enjoy the pool, Ft. Myers beach, or other amenities around the resort. I decided to join several friends at the pool which was not heated, nor needed to be. After being in the pool for several minutes, I recalled my new iPhone was with me in its water proof case. It was checked for calls and, to my utter dismay, found that the “water proof” case was not so water proof. Yikes! So much for making phone calls the rest of the week.
For Friday night, a group dinner was arranged at Matanzas Inn Restaurant in Fort Myers Beach and eighteen boaters along with fifteen other Club members who arrived by land yacht, converged on the restaurant at 6:00 PM. Since we had a small crowd of 33, the manager had reserved the back area of the restaurant so that we could all dine together. It was great to see so many club members show up. Everyone was anxious to catch up on life’s happenings since we had not been together for a month or so. We also celebrated one member’s birthday. Well, not on that day specifically, but the same date of many, many years prior. You know what I mean.
On Saturday, we again fed the boaters breakfast and then sent everyone off to enjoy the day. Saturday was pretty much an ‘on your own’ day, so we didn’t have much planned as far as club activities. Fortunately, Mother Nature was quite cooperative during the time we stayed at the marina and our need for umbrellas was minimal. However, her hot days reminded us that we were indeed in southwest Florida in the middle of August.
On Sunday morning we cast off lines and headed for home ports. Much appreciation goes to Dave O’Conner, the Dockmaster at Pink Shell Resort and Marina. His hospitality and special accommodation to the Cape Coral Cruise Club made this unofficial cruise officially happen!
The Cape Coral Cruise Club is open to new members who own a boat with overnight accommodations and reside in the Cape Coral / Ft. Myers area. For membership information please contact Phil Kryger at 239-541-0236. View a short picture video of recent Club activities and read additional Club information on its website, www.c-c-c-c.org Like us on Facebook.
By John Queen, Vice-Commodore, Cape Coral Cruise Club
(Ft. Myers Beach to Charlotte Harbour) Snook season is open and reports of numerous catches of large and small ones on live baits as well as artificial presentations. Pilchards and large jumbo shrimps should be the baits of choice for live presentations. Artificial presentations should include soft-scented plastic, twitch baits and top water plugs. Both methods will work wonders around points and areas where there is good current flow.
Redfish are everywhere and they are getting bigger each day. Work the incoming tides along mangroves with oyster shells and oyster shell clusters on hard, sand or mud bottom. While gold spoons, soft-scented weed-less plastics or shrimp imitations on jig heads produce, I prefer to use cut Pin Fish and large jumbo shrimps under a cork or stationary on the bottom. Work any area for 10 minutes or so and keep moving until you find the fish.
Pictured here is Bob Johnston, Richard Shuttlesworth’s and John Hamilton all from the Plantation Fishing Club of Ft. Myers, Florida showing off their Redfish catches from areas around Pineland. These three men would rather fish than eat and they know how to catch the fish! Good job men! See you soon.
This month will continue to produce good Redfish numbers, so now is the time to get on the water and get your share. Hopefully the above information will assist in getting your Redfish or Snook ‘of a lifetime’.
This is Captain Terry Fisher wishing everyone ‘tight lines’. Charter information may be obtained by calling me direct at 239-357-6829 or by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. See my website: www.fishfacecharters.com for more information including fishing articles, tips and reports.