It’s mid September and I really should be back at school, but the fishing is great! While the Mangrove Snapper fishing has slowed on the area patch reefs, the Yellowtail Snapper bite remains outstanding on the outside edge of the reef from 65 to 90 foot of water. There have also been a fair number of Cero Mackerel and some King Mackerel showing up on our reefs.
Any live bait, pilchard, ballyhoo will get you hooked up with these speedy slayers. There are copious amounts of ballyhoo on the reef, literally acres of ballyhoo that range in size from very small to large. These are great baits for the Mackerel as well as Grouper and Mutton Snapper on the reefs as well as the area wrecks.
The area wreck fishing has also been outstanding this past week with some impressive Black Grouper and Mutton Snapper being the target of choice.
Offshore fishing can be hit or miss this time of year, but this last week was a lot more “hit” than miss.
Large schoolie dolphin as well as a few Wahoo have been taken in and amongst the weed lines and floating debris 15 to 25 miles from shore. I recommend that you do some reef fishing early in the morning, catch some yellowtail, maybe a grouper and load up on ballyhoo before you venture offshore. Remember to pay attention to the birds. Small groups of birds working west will put you on the bigger fish, which can’t resist a small live ballyhoo offering. Whatever type of fishing suits your fancy mid September is a great time of year to get offshore and enjoy our fabulous Keys’ waters.
Best Bet for the week ahead: Stick to the Reef and Wrecks!