Marathon & Florida Keys Weekly Fishing Report – Change is on the water – April 13, 2011

The color change in the Middle Florida Keys is producing some good sailfish, cobia and dolphin action.


Sailfish, cobia and dolphin

Anglers report seeing eight to ten sailfish in a day’s outing and getting one or two hooked up and landed.  The cobia sightings are more scattered, but successful landings are netting fish approaching 50 pounds.

The dolphin are being found at the color change and out to 600 feet of water, with lots of weed lines holding fish as well as anglers finding them under working birds. 

Wreck fishing 

Dropping on the wrecks is yielding plenty of amberjack plus nice size mutton snapper.  On the reef, muttons, yellowtails and large, three- to five-pound mangroves are biting well in the 60- to 90-foot depths.


Predators, mostly sharks, are causing major issues from the reef all the way in to the Seven Mile Bridge and out to the wrecks in the Gulf. 

Make great sport of the situation by targeting the sharks on light tackle using circle hooks.  They’re mostly lemons, spinners and bulls on the Atlantic side, with blacktips added to the mix in the Gulf.

Bay and Gulf fishing 

Mangrove snapper dominates the action in the Bay and Gulf.  They’re averaging 14 inches, but I’ve had many as large as 18 inches on the near shore wrecks and banks.

Cobia and permit are beginning to show in the Gulf along with gag and Goliath grouper, which must be released.  We’re just 18 days away from the opening of grouper season.  Now is the time to check your tackle and re-spool your large conventional reels to be prepared for your shot at the prize.


Tarpon fishing at the bridges and Key West Harbor is delivering plenty of fish ranging from 50 to 130 pounds.

The week’s best catches

The SeaSquared hosted families from Michigan, Georgia, Florida, Maryland and Spain, honeymooners from Texas and angling friends from Kentucky.  We fished on the reef, in Hawk Channel and in the Bay and Gulf.

Our anglers caught yellowtail, mangrove, lane and mutton snapper, porgy, Spanish mackerel and too many grouper, all thrown back. 

Honeymooners Jeff and Rene … Read the full report

The Fuston Family … Read the full report

Carlos and his Familia … Read the full report

Anglers from Kentucky … Read the full report

The Davis Family … Read the full report

The Easterwood family enjoyed dinner and a show with a combo snapper/shark trip, and the Gille family celebrated daughter Michelle’s birthday with a shark fishing adventure, catching and releasing 13 lemons and a blacktip.

Tim and Joe Easterwood … Read the full report

The Gille Family … Read the full report

Until next week … tight lines!

Capt. Chris and Christy Johnson, SeaSquared Charters, 7 Mile Marina, Marathon Florida Keys, 305-743-5305

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