Deep Sea Fishing Action on the Reef this Summer – Fort Lauderdale Fishing Report

Fort Lauderdale Drift FishingMutton snappers biting good in Ft Lauderdale

We’re having one helluva fishing season this summer.  The action on the reef is just amazing.  Bonitos are dominating the bite on the reef, leaving us little down time when we’re not hooked up fighting a fish.  The King Mackerel bite is hot this month too.  The Kings are averaging 4-10 pounds and are biting excellent on both the drift fishing and the sport fishing trips.  Blackfin tuna, weighing up to 30-35 pounds, are biting sporadically on the reef.  They travel through, usually in groups of 2-3 fish, along the reefs eating the ballyhoo and sardines.  They don’t bite on every trip, but are a great find when we do catch a couple.

Mutton snapper for dinnerMutton snappers biting good on the Ft Lauderdale reef

Offshore fishing has been hit or miss lately.  And with all the action in on the reefs, there’s been little reason to fish out that far.  A few boats are finding some small schools of mahi-mahi, but they really haven’t made their grand summer entrance yet.  Last year the mahi-mahi bite was late and I suspect it will be this year again.  I foresee them biting really good in Late August and throughout September.  I’ll keep you posted if they start biting.  We caught this monster dolphin on a half day drift fishing trip just 1 mile offshore. 

Monster Mahi-Mahi caught drift fishing in Ft Lauderdale

We’ve been doing a lot of bottom fishing lately too and the bite is really strong.  Snowy groupers are hitting on the ultra-deep bottom spots, along with some small to medium sized tile fish.  The 200-300′ deep shipwrecks are holding some pretty big amberjacks.  Amberjacks have a hard time ignoring a frisky blue runner or small bonito dropped to the bottom.  A few unexpected Warsaw groupers were caught this week also.  Deep dropping on the wrecks is routinely superb in the late summer.

Groupers caught deep droppingNice cobia caught drifting on the reef in Ft Lauderdale

We’re capturing a few cobia out there now on the drift fishing trips.  Cobia tend to follow closely behind sea turtles and sting rays, eating up any small shellfish that get churned up as they swim by.  We see a lot of sea turtles this time of year because the water is so flat calm and they are easy to spot.  This lucky fisherman threw a pitch bait he had ready a few feet away from a sea turtle that surfaced near the boat.  The cobia attacked the bait the second it hit the water.  Moral of the story:  Always be ready out there… you never know what’s going to swim up on you.  Good luck out there fishing everyone.  Sea ya on the water.