The cry of “wahooooo!” can be heard loud and clear in the Middle and Lower Keys!
Starting with the full moon over the weekend and into the back side of it now, the wahoo bite offshore has been excellent. Trolling with ballyhoo on Iland or Billy Bait lures is working well. Be sure to use a weight or planer on the bait/lure combo to keep it down.
Anglers are catching wahoo on the wrecks also using live blue runners and goggle eyes. Most of the wahoo are in the 20- to 40-pound range, with a few larger specimens in the 60-pound class making an appearance.
There’s some sailfish action too. We’re finding them chasing flying fish under frigate birds as well as live-baiting in 130 to 180 feet of water.
On the reef, the yellowtail snapper bite is sporadic, with the best fishing in the 70- to 80-foot depths. There are some king mackerel in the same areas as well as on the wrecks. Also on the wrecks are plenty of amberjack and the occasional mutton snapper.
Hawk Channel provides its usual assortment of fun-catching and good-eating fish, including mackerel, snapper, grouper and some nice cobia. (Remember, all grouper must be released until the season reopens on May 1.)
Bay and gulf
In the bay and gulf waters, there’s lots of action on mangrove snapper, sharks, Spanish and king mackerel and Goliath grouper.
Marathon Boat Yard Marine Center continues its 2014 seminar series tomorrow with Capt. Andrew Tippler of Last Cast Charters, who will discuss permit fishing. Join them starting at 6pm Thursday at their showroom at 2001 Overseas Hwy in Marathon. There will be drawings for prizes, beverages and popcorn.
The week’s best
The SeaSquared crew has been fishing families and groups enjoying a tropical getaway from the snowy tundra up north.
Hawk Channel, bridge and bay fishing produced catches of hogfish, mangrove, yellowtail and mutton snapper and porgy.SeaSquared Charters Marathon Florida Keys 305-743-5305
Capt. Chris Johnson is a member of the Yamaha National Fishing Team and specializes in offshore, gulf/bay, reef/wreck, sailfish, shark and tarpon fishing with SeaSquared Charters out of Porky’s Bayside Marina in Marathon. You can reach him at 305.743.5305, https://seasquaredcharters.com and http://Facebook.com/MarathonFishing