The snappers are biting like mad on our drift fishing trips this week. The yellowtails are hitting, as well as mangroves and muttons too. Morning trips have been a bit slow, but the afternoon and night trips are making up for it. The muttons are showing up particularly well on the afternoon trips and the yellowtails/mangroves are snappin’ on the night trip. The mangroves have been exceptionally big lately. Ballyhoo plugs and squid are the top baits for these tasty bottom critters. You have a good shot at catching a bigger snapper on the afternoon trip, but the action is certainly best on the night anchor trips. Mixed in the the snappers have been lots of grunts, porgies, triggerfish, toros, small sharks and groupers. Groupers are out of season for a couple more weeks. May 1 is the start of grouper season where we can keep ‘em.
For the best action, night is always best. We’ve had some outstanding night fishing trips this week. It takes a while to get the snappers chummed up, so be patient. But once they hone in on that chum, the surround the boat and start biting everything you drop down to them. A couple nights this week we’ve caught over a hundred fish, 60 or 70 of them keepers. That’s some good eating! For the biggest fish, make sure to check out our sportfishing charters, which are catching mahi-mahi, tunas and big game sharks this week. Good luck to everyone fishing with us over the next few days. I’ll sea ya on the water!
A double header wahoo caught trolling on our sportfishing charter
Wow, what a week we’ve had trolling for wahoo. They are jumping in the boat. Not literally, but they sure are biting good. The wahoo always bite good around the full moon, and this week is no different. We’re catching them trolling in 180-450ft of water, just a mile and a half off the Ft Lauderdale coast. We’ve caught a couple doubles and a couple triples over the past few days. There are also some mahi-mahi mixed in and a few tunas. Our sportfishing charters aren’t catching them on every single trip, but this is a great time to come out and fish for the fastest fish in the ocean. Let’s go fishing!
Nice wahoo caught by this lady angler on our sportfishing charter
Big double wahoo caught trolling 400ft of water
Triple wahoo caught on our sportfishing charter
Jay with a big sailfish just caught on a Ft Lauderdale sportfish charter.
It’s been one helluva great week of fishing in Fort Lauderdale. The dolphin are biting excellent, some sailfish are around and biting, big groupers and other big bottom fish are biting… lots of activity out there on the reefs. The cold snap we just had over the weekend has really gotten the sailfish frisky. And with the stiff winds, it’s the perfect conditions for kite fishing. Sailfish are concentrated in 100-200ft of water, a line of water about a mile off our coast affectionally called ‘Sailfish Alley’. This is the area just outside the reef and inside edge of the Gulfstream, a perfect zone with a lot of available food for pelagic predators.
Nice dolphin and wahoo catch on our drift boat, the Catch My Drift
The dolphin fishing is really getting good too. We’re getting them on our drift fishing trips and our sportfishing charters. Sportfishing charters have the definite advantage in dolphin fishing because they go trolling. But savvy anglers are hooking into them on the drift too. Most dolphin have been schoolie sized, with a few bigger ones mixed into the bunch. Wahoo are out there in good numbers too, also being caught on the troll.
Nice wahoo caught on the troll, a mile off the Fort Lauderdale coast
Wahoo are argued to be the fastest fish in the ocean. When a wahoo hits your line, there is little doubt of it being anything but a wahoo. Drag screams off the reel like you just snagged a nuclear submarine. It’s obvious that a fish shaped like a torpedo is built for speed. One of the best eating fish out there, wahoo are always a prized fish. We’ve been catching an inordinate amount of wahoo this week. February is one of the hottest months for wahoo.
Another big wahoo caught high speed trolling off Fort Lauderdale
This great fishing is just the prelude to our best season on the year… March, April and May. The best 3 months of big game fishing off our coast is getting rolling now. This is the start of our big game fishing season in Fort Lauderdale and all evidence points to this being a banner year for us. We don’t crush them on every single trip, but the fish are definitely out there and waiting to be caught. Good luck to everyone fishing with us in the coming weeks. Have fun and catch’em up!
Nice sailfish caught on a cold, windy day in Ft Lauderdale
Huge bull dolphin caught sportfishing in Ft Lauderdale
It’s been a great couple weeks of dolphin fishing in Ft Lauderdale. The dolphin are coming in pretty close, almost into the reefs. The best bite is happening in 200-400ft of water. Most dolphins have been schoolie sized, with quite a few gaffers mixed in. The other day, Capt. Rod caught a humongous bull dolphin, a 50 pounder. This is the season of big fish in Ft Lauderdale.
Mick with a big blackfin tuna caught trolling in Ft Lauderdale
Blackfin tunas are also abundant on the reefs this time of year. They school up into large pods of fish and you can see them “busting baits” on the surface. Most of these are football sized fish with the occasional really big one. They are all keeper sized though and excellent eating. When trolling, along with the blackfin tunas, we’re catching a few kingfish and sometimes a big wahoo.
Nice sailfish just caught on our Ft Lauderdale sportfishing charter
Sailfish are biting too! We’re into the last leg of our awesome sailfish season too. Sailfish bite throughout the year here in Ft Lauderdale, but the winter months have the highest concentration of them. We’re catching sailfish consistently using the kite fishing technique and sometimes by trolling. Sailfish are approximately 7ft in length and are one of the most sought after gamefish in the ocean. They are one of the most fun fish to catch, with their leaping and somersaults high into the air. The chilly weather really gets them frisky and the coldest days (cold for Lauderdale is like 65-70 degrees) are when we catch the highest numbers of them.
Nice tilefish we caught fishing one of our secret wrecks off the coast of Ft Lauderdale
Wreck fishing is best during the Spring but the bottom fish are already starting to move in and take their places around our local deep shipwrecks. Big amberjacks are beginning to bite, a few groupers and an occasional cobia. You can also catch barracuda, sharks or just about any top predator fish around these underwater structures. The fishing is getting good, so come on out and wet a line. You can’t catch them unless you go out there and give it a go. Sea ya on the water.
Cool tiger shark caught fishing aboard the Catch My Drift
Great week of fishing in Fort Lauderdale. Over this past week, there have been some great catches of dolphin, sailfish, a few wahoos, sharks and some big fish off the bottom. Our drift fishing trips are getting into all the different kinds of snappers… yellowtails, mangroves and mutton snappers as well as a grouper every now and then and the oddball cobia, tuna or mahi-mahi. Kingfish are also out there and biting for those anglers who fish a surface or mid-depth bait. Kingfish like the morning bite, so if you’re fishing the drift boat and want to catch something bigger, do the morning trip. If you’re going for action, the afternoon and night trips are the best.
Lots of dolphin and kingfish caught on our sportfishing charter
Sportfishing charters are coming in with some great catches too. Mahi-mahi are biting very good on certain days. Kingfish, wahoo and blackfin tunas are also biting good on the reefs. Trolling is such a great method of fishing because we can effectively target all these species with the same technique. Trolling is also great because we can cover a lot of territory to look for where the fish are most concentrated. Sailfish is the other special on the menu this month. December and January are the top months for catching sailfish in South Florida. While trolling is also effective for catching sailfish, kite fishing is the preferred method to get a hook up on these elusive gamefish. Kite fishing involves presenting live baits using high flying kites, suspending the baits so they are left splashing on the top of the water. The stiff winter winds and availability of sailfish and larger dolphin fish, make kite fishing one of our optimal methods to target big game this time of year.
Nice sailfish caught and released on our sportfishing charter
Nice dolphin just caught on our sportfishing charter
What a terrible week for weather and what a spectacular week for fishing. Stormy skies and rough seas made the fishing difficult for us this week, but those brave anglers who went out there had some of the best fishing action we’ve had in Fort Lauderdale for some time. The strong east winds are blowing the dolphin in close, all the way into as shallow as 80ft of water. Even our drift fishing trips are catching them. Lots of nice, gaffer sized dolphins are scattered and biting good on the reef. Lately, it’s seemed, the rougher the ocean the better the fishing. Fish get active when the wind starts howling and the waves pick up.
Nice sailfish caught on the drift boat in Fort Lauderdale
Sailfish action is great too. This is our prime month of fishing for sailfish and these conditions are great for it. Kite fishing, a technique that involves flying kites and dangling live baits from the kite so that the baits are suspended and splashing on the surface, requires a stiff wind. This method, which is spectacular to see because you can watch the entire bite sequence happening on the surface, is the best way to target sailfish, bigger dolphin and other surface feeding gamefish. Our sportfishing charters this week have caught sailfish more often than not, with some charters coming in with multiple sailfish. The next cold front that moves through may be the best sailfish bite we’ll have all year.
Nice sailfish caught in Ft Lauderdale in stormy conditions
Nice catch of dolphin on the Mary B III - 32 keeper dolphins
It was a great day for fishing today on the Mary B III. The dolphin were snapping in 350-400ft of water today, just a mile and a half off the Fort Lauderdale beach. The morning trip was good, but the afternoon was even better. We started the morning drifting on the reef, picking up a few snappers and some other assorted bottom critters (grunts, triggers, porgies). A few boats just outside of us were catching some scattered mahi-mahi, so we decided to go give that a try. We went out to 350ft of water and set up on a drift. We ended up catching 8 mahi-mahi and one lucky angler caught about a 15 pound wahoo, the pool winning fish. On the afternoon trip, we went directly out to 400ft of water to start the trip. We picked at some mahi-mahi catching a few. Trolling is the best way to cover some territory and find more fish. There weren’t many people on the afternoon trip, so we decided to pick up the baits and try some trolling. It was a great call by the captain to do this because we started catching fish instantly. The dolphin were all over the place but scattered. Every few minutes we hooked into one or two. We hit one nice school with about 12 fish in it, where every person on the boat had a dolphin on the line at the same time. One angler had a monster 25 pounder on the line, but ultimately broke him off. That would have been the biggest one of the day. The afternoon catch ended up being 32 keeper dolphin, I don’t know how many releases and a few assorted bottom fish that we caught drifting over the reef during the last 1/2 hour of the trip. There’s some great dolphin action just offshore Fort Lauderdale beach right now. Last November, we had some incredible dolphin fishing action. It looks like this year is starting to get rolling too. This is a great time to come out on a drift fishing trip in Fort Lauderdale. Let’s go fishing!
The one that got away- pic of the 25 pounder we busted off. Picture doesn't do the fish justice.
Nice catch of snappers, dolphin, kingfish and tunas on our fishing charter
There’s some great action on the Fort Lauderdale reefs this month. The kingfish and bonitos are biting great and are providing non-stop action when trolling the reefs. Mahi-mahi are also out there in abundance and while it does take some time to find them, they are out there to be found. Snapper fishing on the bottom continues to be productive this month. All in all, there’s great action fishing the reefs and offshore waters of Fort Lauderdale.
Nice catch of big mutton snappers on our fishing trip
Big muttons are biting this month on the bottom. Our drift boat, the Catch My Drift, is catching a lot of them on the afternoon and night trips. Morning has been okay, but afternoon and night fishing has been unquestionably better. Mutton snappers are biting ballyhoo, sardines and cigar minnows. When you are mutton fishing, there are a lot of other bottom fish you can catch too. Groupers are biting excellent this year and this is a great month to catch them. Reds, blacks, gags, scamps and other types of groupers are biting on the 60-80ft reefs and on the deeper shipwrecks in 200-300ft of water. Cobia follow the mullet run and are biting as well. You never know what you might pull off the bottom this time of year.
Nice cobia caught night anchor fishing on the Catch My Drift
Lastly, wahoos are biting better this year than I have ever seen them bite. Maybe we’re just getting better at catching them, but lots and lots of big wahoos have been hitting the docks over the past few weeks. Wahoo are the fastest fish in the ocean and traditionally like a fast trolled lure. We have been high speed trolling whenever we move from spot to spot and also on the way back to the inlet at the end of the trip. Doing this, we’ve caught a lot of big wahoos that we wouldn’t have caught otherwise. As my dad always told me, you have to travel that distance to get where you are going anyway, may as well throw a bait out. You might get lucky and make the day. Can’t catch a fish if you don’t throw out a line. Good luck fishing this week everyone, the fish are snappin’!!!!
Nice snook just captured fishing the Ft Lauderdale Intracoastal waterway
Capt. Robert is having a great week on the 26ft center console fishing the InterCoastal Waterway of Fort Lauderdale. Snook season just opened up for us as of September 1, so we’ve been doing quite a bit of snook fishing in the ICW. This is the best year on snooks I have seen in a long time. We’re catching them on live pilchards, mullet and shimps along the sea walls that line our inshore canals. We have some secret spots, which I can’t divulge, but most spots are holding some snooks. September is traditionally a good month for snook fishing, after a 3 month closure period during the summers months. These fish aren’t hook shy like they will be 6-7 months from now. We’re getting an aggressive bite once again from these fish.
Tarpon on the line being fought by an excited angler
Tarpon too, are biting good in the inshore waters of Ft Lauderdale. First off, we have tarpons all around our docks every day. We don’t fish for these ones around our dock, as we consider these tarpon our pets. They eat a lot of the fish scraps we throw over at the fish cleaning table when cleaning our catch at the end of the day. However, this is a good indicator on how many tarpon are in our local waters. We’re catching a lot of tarpon in Port Everglades, right at the mouth of the inlet around the jetties. Tarpon are strictly catch-and-release, but man are they fun to catch. No other fish fights with as much vigor as tarpon do. And that we catch them on light tackle makes them even more exciting. Barracudas, jack crevale, mangrove snapper, goliath grouper and sharks are all fish you can also potentially catch while tarpon fishing the shallow waters of the Fort Lauderdale Intracoastal. Good luck everyone, catch ‘em up!
Nice tarpon on the line, hooked up in Port Everglades
Nice shark catch and release in the inshore waters of Fort Lauderdale
Huge wahoo and a whole rack of kingfish caught sportfishing today.
It was a helluva day at sea today with an awesome catch of kingfish, bonitos and a monster wahoo on our sportfishing charter. The kingfish and bonitos are all over the reef, every which way we turn we’re hooking into a mulitple fish at a time. Trolling is the best method of fishing this time of year to catch the most fish possible. It is a technique where the boat is moving the whole time and we drag a spread of lures behind the boat to look like a school of fish trying to escape. It allows us to cover a lot of territory on the water and cover the most ground possible. When you’re trolling, you never know what you’re going to catch. Bonitos, a 5-10 pound fish in the mackerel family, are biting great! They are the most aggressive and are out there in the largest numbers. Kingfish are starting to bite very good too. Kingfish have been almost non-existent this year and are just starting to show up for us.
Big wahoo caught trolling the reef in Ft Lauderdale
Last year, we had banner numbers of wahoo caught and the season is starting early. During the past few days, several wahoos have been caught including this monster 37 pounder shown in the photo. Wahoo were very active off our coast during the months of September through December last year. It’s good to see them beginning to bite so early.
Big African Pompanos and a big mangrove snapper just caught drift fishing on the reef
Our drift fishing trips are catching a lot of action out there too. This weeks catches have consisted of a lot of yellowtail, mangrove and mutton snappers, some nice kingfish, bonitos, a couple blackfin tunas and several very large African Pompanos.
A bite this good can’t last for long. This is a great time to come fishing in Fort Lauderdale. So come out on the water and let’s go fishing!