Marathon & Florida Keys Weekly Fishing Report, Capt. Chris Johnson, SeaSquared Charters, April 6, 2011
Snapper, snapper, snapper
Yellowtail snapper fishing has been first-rate in 60 to 90 feet of water on the reef with lots of anglers reporting large fish. You may need to upgrade your tackle size a bit for these flag ‘tails, as they will try to dig for the reef immediately upon hook set.
There is a good mangrove and mutton snapper bite on the reef and patch reefs, with plenty of cero mackerel and kingfish to add to the action.
Hawk Channel is holding all three species of mackerel plus good size mangroves and some Florida pompano.
The sailfish have begun their migration to their spawning grounds off the Yucatan Peninsula. They have arrived in the Keys in appreciable numbers and will continue to pour through Sailfish Alley in the coming weeks.
With the Gulf Stream pushed right up to the reef edge, the dolphin bite improved dramatically, and the cobia were tailing along with the rest of the pelagics. Quite a few wahoo were taken in the Key West area, and the blackfin tuna fishing has been good in 200 to 500 feet of water.
Tarpon and sharks
The tarpon bite at the bridges and in Key West harbor has really begun to improve. There are plenty of sharks around the bridges and in the bay, with bulls, lemons, blacktips and spinners showing up to entertain on a regular basis.
Bay and gulf
The week’s best catches
The SeaSquared hosted groups last week from Florida, Georgia and Michigan. We fished on the reef and at the Seven Mile Bridge. Our anglers caught yellowtail snapper, including some huge flags, mangroves, porgy and some mackerel. Sharks were an obstacle on nearly all trips, but we came back to the dock with nice catches nonetheless.
Dot Palm’s Gigi Harrison with her parents, Ann and Jim Barfield from GA
Husband-wife anglers from Tampa, Murray Beatts and Joan Wuischpard
The MacNichol family from Grandville MI
The Wuestenberg family from Saline MI