Florida Keys Weekly

They’re finally here…that’s right, the sailfish are here!

The much-anticipated arrival of our big sailfish migration has hit its stride, and with moderate east to southeast winds, the fish are tailing. We call it tailing because the sailfish are traveling right on the surface, many times with much of the top half of their tail sticking out of the water.

This is sight fishing at its best!

Instead of the typical trolling offshore, we are actively hunting at high speeds, looking for the sailfish on the surface. Many times, we are able to spot them tailing in loose packs of 10 to 15 at a time. Once our crews have spotted the sails, we cast live baits to them; then the “reel” fun begins! It is not uncommon to hook several fish at one time. Catching sailfish is a true adrenalin rush! Sailfish are incredibly fast and very acrobatic – they are an unparalled offshore gamefish, and these conditions probably won’t last more than a few weeks so get on the water with one of our experienced teams and “sea” what it’s all about!

Florian Leprince with his Mutton Snapper. He and his parents also released five Blacktip sharks up to 50lbs

On the reefs, the snapper bite continues to be outstanding. There are plenty of small to medium-sized yellowtail snapper still out on the patch reef in around 30 feet of water. Out on the Middle Keys deep reefs, anglers aboard our boats have seen plenty of action with some bigger yellow tails or flags. These fish typically exceed 30 inches in length and can be an incredible challenge for even the best anglers.

Dolphin fishing is steadily picking up with decent catches of quality size fish found in about 400 to 700 feet of water. Dolphin fishing will do nothing but get better for the next couple of months.

Our area wrecks are producing some great permit fishing. This is a catch and release type of fishing and lots of fun. The deeper wrecks continue to produce big amberjacks and great mutton snapper as well as the occasional grouper or king fish.

Despite the winds the east to southeast winds this week that have finally brought the sailfish into Florida Keys waters just in time for the 10th Annual World Sailfish Tournament in Key West, tarpon fishing is very good right now at both the Seven Mile Bridge and Bahia Honda Bridge. Our captains are using a variety of bait to entice the Silver Kings; mullet and crabs seem to be working the best right now depending on which tide and bridge you are fishing.

As always, feel free to give us a call for information or inquiries to make your Marathon fishing experience – a success our skilled teams are always ready to help!

Best Bet for the week ahead: Early morning or late afternoon tarpon trips or sight fishing for tailing sailfish.


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Jason is the owner of Best Bet SportFishing.

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