The action has slowed down a bit on the reef this past week in Ft Lauderdale. A lot of the reef fish like kingfish and bonitos didn’t bite that well for us this week as opposed to last week when they were biting good. Fortunately, the sailfish are still biting great on our sportfishing trips. Fort Lauderdale is always a hot spot for sailfish action in the winter time, and this year is no exception. The constant cold weather this year has really gotten the sailfish hungry. The sailfish are biting best in about 150′-200′ of water, just offshore of the Ft Lauderdale artificial reef that runs along our coast. Goggle eyes and mullet are my favorites for sailfishing using the kite method.
Sailfish are a top gamefish and whenever they are biting, it’s a good bet that there are some other bigger game fish around as well. Sharks usually show up for us starting in February and stay biting throughout the spring and into the summer. Sharks are beginning to show up out there as well. This month, we’ve had a few special shark fishing trips where we strictly target sharks and other sea monsters. We haven’t caught any of the humongous sharks that we usually catch later in the year, but there are some good sized hammerheads and silky sharks around. Basically, the same tactics that work for catching sailfish, work too for catching sharks. Kite fishing is my method of choice, but make sure you are using a wire leader. Sharks can bite through monofilament like a knife through warm butter.
Offshore dolphin fishing has been good for us this week also. The mahi-mahi we’re catching have been medium to small sized ones, but there are lots and lots of them when you hit a good school. Not every trip we take offshore is going to be a great day for dolphin. In fact, it’s more of a 50/50 shot out there. Our Wednesday All Day Dolphin Trip this week went offshore for the first few hours of the trip and didn’t catch a thing. Without a fish in boat by 11 o’clock, we came in on the reef to change tactics and hopefully get some fish. When we came in on the reef, we caught over 20 nice kingfish. The funny thing was that no dolphin were caught trolling offshore, but we did manage to catch one nice dolphin mixed in with those kingfish in 100′ of water.
Not every trip for this time of year is going to be action packed with fish. There are fewer fish around in the winter, but the trade off is that most of the fish we catch are very big. Sailfish, sharks, mahi-mahi, tuna, wahoo and cobia are the big game species we’re going to be catching for the next month. Christmas week fishing is going to be really busy, so make sure to make your reservations early. Sea ya out there…