Port Canaveral Fishing Reports

August 2014 Port Canaveral Fishing Report

Well, snapper season 2014 has came and went and honestly, I’m not really sure what to say about it. One thing’s for sure, the bite wasn’t exactly what everybody may have expected. I’m sure everybody thought they would just run out to their favorite honey hole and load up with 20 pounders and get home. That expectation was a pipe dream for a few reasons, most of which red-snapper-big-canaveral-floridacan be traced back to some a-hole named Murphy who made up some stupid laws… First and foremost, when snapper season opens up, the fish know it and they go into hiding or quit biting. Some of the spots where you couldn’t grouper fish through the snapper looked like the remnants of a nuclear reactor meltdown. You’d pull up, mark nothing but the structure and hardly loose bait. Where did they all go? Who knows. Strike one…

Secondly, the shear number of boats fishing was staggering. You think you’re headed to your secret honey, only to find there’s already ten boatloads of your new buddies fishing there. If you were lucky enough for there not to be a boat on your rock, you didn’t want to fish it for fear of one of those new buddies sniping your spot. Strike two…

Thirdly, in addition to contending with all the other boats and anglers, you had to deal with the tax man. No, not the government idiot, the man in the grey suit! I personally had half a dozen fish over twelve pounds eaten by sharks on one rock. Imagine that, another fish mismanaged by NMFS.. Those sandbar sharks need to be thinned out, but NMFS says they are overfished too. And don’t even get me started on those ridiculous jewfish!!

All in all, the catches were pretty good. I’m just sour that there were so many boats that it made the fishing a little difficult and frustrating. There were lots of limits caught and the fish were generally decent sized. There were, however, not near as many fish caught over twenty pounds as most people expected. Mixed in with the snapper were a handful of grouper, amberjack and cobia.

Now that everybody spent most of their fishing money chasing snapper, it should be smooth sailing if you want to go bottom fishing. port-canaveral-snapper-fishingProvided the thermocline doesn’t move in, there should still be a few grouper and amberjack from 130′ on out to the cones. Take plenty of live bait as the snapper will likely will show back up since the season closed!

The live bait fishing has been very sporadic all summer with kingfish being tough to find. But, there have been some cobia around along with some bonito and sharks to add to the action. I would expect this fishing to remain relatively the same throughout August as long as the cold water stays away.

As far as the trolling goes, I only heard of one decent catch of dolphin all of las month. In fact, that was the only dolphin I heard of at all. Sometimes in August we get a little run of dolphin with a few wahoo and sails mixed in. So, if you really want to try trolling, there’s your incentive..

Either way, summertime is sliding by, so get out there and do it up before it’s too late!!

See ya on the pond!!

Thanks and tight lines!


March 2014 Port Canaveral Fishing Report

Well, it’s March, which means it’s time to march out and start looking for cobia. But, before you get all Christ4-hotter-cobiasmas Eve, kid in a candy store excited I should tell you that the run has started and so far, it’s nothing to write home about. I don’t mean to sound like a Debbie Downer, it hasn’t been all bad. There have some some pretty decent catches and a few pretty nice fish caught too. There just hasn’t been a whole bunch of consistency. One day there’s a whole bunch of rays and very few fish. Next day, there’s only a few rays but more fish per ray. Day after that, there’s no rays and a few free-swimmers. You get my drift??

If I had to guess, the cobia fishing will likely remain sporadic into March. The water inshore has remained on the warm side as is the water offshore. With the temperatures higher than normal, there’s no temperature gradient making the cobia highway. In years past, there’s been a pathway of water in the 67-70 degree range that was generally not that wide. This meant that the migrating fish were funneled into a narrow highway of water. This year the temp differential is negligible, causing the fish to be more widely scattered out.

If you do decide to go looking for cobia, be prepared to spend some time and cover a bit of ocean. The first thing to look for is where the water reaches 68 degrees. If there’s no defined temperature break or weed edge, the next thing I tend to look for is the bait. Without an edge, the rays will sometimes gravitate to the areas holding sardines, greenies or pogies.  From there, it’s going to be a matter of spending the time and fuel to find the fish. As far as bait goes, most people will cast a variety of jigs tipped with squid. Also, keep a few good live baits ready for those fish who turn their nose up to the jigs.

The higher than normal temperatures negatively affecting the cobia fishing can be a blessing for those interested in dolphin. Although February is a little early in the year, there were signs of an early dolphin run. Although, much like the cobia, the phins were somewhat sporadic. Nevertheless, there were some pretty decent catches.

If last month is any indication, March could be a continuation of the early dolphin run. Also like the cobia, the dolphin fishing may rely on a current edge, temperature break or weedline. If you can find one or a combination of the aforementioned you will probably find some dolphin. Ballyhoo and ballyhoo/lure combos will be the bait of choice, but strip baits could work well if the smaller schoolies show up.

The only kingfish action in February was north of us off Daytona or south of us out of Sebastian. With a little luck, we will see springtime run and some fish will show up. Otherwise, the live bait fishing could remain slow all month.

If you want to go bottom fishing, the amberjack should be a pretty good bet. Last month, they were biting good and they should continue into the next couple months as they congregate to spawn. Big live baits will be the best bait, but jigs may work if there’s not too many barracuda.

So, March on out there and make something happen..

See ya on he pond!!