Monthly Archives

April 2021

Cocoa Beach to Vero Beach Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing ChartersNo Comments

Surf fishing the Space Coast continued its blitz of fish and shark species throughout the region. Fishing near Cocoa Beach south to Satellite Beach found beach fishing anglers reeling in pompano, whiting, bluefish and snook. Meanwhile, the central region consisting of Satellite Beach south to Melbourne Beach found similar results with an increased number of snook, flounder and margate near the rocky shorelines. Wrapping up the southern region south of Melbourne Beach, including Sebastian Inlet to Vero Beach, held consistency on the red hot whiting bite, big pompano and heaps of Blacktip sharks. Our surf fishing charters stayed dialed in on these movements of fish, shark and bait movement that provided a plethora of catches that excited clients daily.

Action packed shoreline fishing held anglers captive as the bluefish and whiting bite continued to keep rods bent and fish hitting the sandy shores. Double digit bluefish catches were a common theme through the week when fishing with cut bait. Ferocious predatory bluefish swarmed any and all catches with many whiting coming in handicapped and tailless. Considering the toothy profile of the bluefish, it’s recommended if specifically targeting them to beef up your leader size with 40lb plus leader to hedge your bets on lost fish, rigs and weights from chaffing.

With many shore-based fishermen targeting the elusive pompano, it was a common theme of many losing sight of the whiting lapping up crustaceans on the shore break. Short cast from 10-25 yards out reigned supreme with pompano rigs tipped with solely Fishbites. Patterns developed with the whiting keying in on the smaller profiled bait, and in many instances, a small piece of Fishbites outfished any rig with sand flea, shrimp or clam. As mentioned in previous articles, it’s of utmost importance to dial in on the scent preferences day to day. The reason I harp this chord so religiously is because of the fact that this approach alone leads to night and day catch rates.

Regarding the above-mentioned whiting lingering near the shore, the pompano also found a place in that mix. More than half of daily pompano catches were on short to medium cast in the whiting target zone. Where there’s food, there’s generally mixed bags of fish species capitalizing on the concentration. Surf fishing charters caught giant pompano this week with clients boasting fish from 15-18 inches. These beauties were common and gratifying for all.

Lively waters tilted the scales for sharks plundering catches before they could reach the safety of shore. Shark fishing charters enjoyed the action on Blacktip sharks engulfing cut bait and smoking lines off the reel. Sandbar sharks, sharp nose and bonnetheads filled in the gaps between the tenacious blacktips that persisted over the last few weeks. Shark fishing is exciting like no other species in my opinion for the surf fishing options this time of year. I’m absolutely a sucker for pompano fishing, but when the shark fishing equipment doubles over, you know it’s game on! If you’re unsure of how to catch or safely and quickly release, please execute due diligence and book a trip to learn or get someone with experience to help you initially. This ensures you’re well equipped to perform the task intelligently and safely.

The surf fishing forecast looks promising and exciting with snook and flounder added to the mix; it’s a wide open fishery at the moment. Go forth and cast!

Central East Coast Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing ChartersNo Comments

What a week to recap surf fishing here on the Central East Coast of Florida! Reports ranging from Jupiter to New Smyrna, including Brevard County, all showed similar trends in species that are running the surf – pompano, sharks, whiting, blue runners, ladyfish and mackerel rounded out the most commonly sought after and caught fish that were targeted from shore. The insane shark fishing continues to bend rods and bring smiles. It’s fun times, until it’s not our intended target and then these predatory species become responsible for hijacking your hard-earned pompano or whiting resulting in a broken rig or half a fish!

The water temperature held steady in ideal ranges and the winds cooperated to bring shades of blue and green water throughout area beaches. This resulted in high performance catches throughout the week with the need to shake a few blue runners and jacks in the process of bagging good numbers of pompano and whiting.

Pompano fishing continues its reign as the spring run kicked into high gear last week. Daily limits were had by surf fishing anglers along the Space Coast, who put in the time and effort. Southern Brevard beaches held consistent migratory fish charging back from their wintering in southern Florida waters.

Those who stood ready reaped the rewards as not only were the numbers up, but the size as well. Pompano measuring from 15-18 inches to the fork of the tail were common catches. These brute fish were weighing in over 3-4 pounds and tested the tackle. Pompano rigs with an assortment of beads and floats were used to match the bite preferences per day. Less proved best on most days with a small bead or minimal diameter float doing the job, with a percentage of fish coming on a naked rig with no float or bead as well. Live sand fleas, blanched fleas and cut clams were found to be the best baits of choice as of late. Fishbites in the sand flea flavor, white clam, pink shrimp and chartreuse crab tipped with the above-mentioned baits or stand alone caught increasingly productive numbers.

With each day bringing a deviation in the fish’s preferred scent, it’s important and recommended to start your day with a broad pattern and dial in on what’s getting bit up. From day to day it seemed to deviate from sand flea scent to the clam scent, and then the next day pink shrimp flavored did phenomenally well. So don’t stick to one when beginning your day, try three or four and observe which scents receive the most attention.

Surf Fishing Forecast

The coming week looks like another good one for the local surf fishing community, and I absolutely encourage everyone to hit the beach. When doing so, remember to religiously fish the different zones of the surf. Multiple times last week the fish were concentrating in varying zones from day to day, tide to tide and time of day. It became a constant experiment to find their preference each day. So cast in a staggering pattern for optimal return. Shore fishing charters numerous days found plentiful catches at 20-50 yards only to find them 100 yards out the following day in those varying cycles. It’s an awesome time of year to fish, so get on it!

Surf Fishing Report for the Space Coast Area

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing ChartersNo Comments

Surf fishing’s firing on all cylinders this past week with big catches hitting the beach! As predicted, the clean water accompanied with ideal water temps brought enormous bounty for surf fishing anglers on the Space Coast. Astonishing numbers of whiting, keeper pompano, and sharks headlined the week’s catches. Bluefish and mackerel made a resurgence from the prior week and that was a welcome sight for light tackle beach casting anglers.

Spring weather cooperated favorably with friendly skies, calm winds and clean water tipping the scales in local surf fisherman’s favor as all the stars aligned and the bite turned positive for the entirety of Brevard County beaches. Cocoa Beach to Sebastian Inlet produced astonishing catches of bull whiting, limits of pompano, bluefish and sharks. While particular beaches had a hot bite one day and slim bite the next, the swarms of whiting and pompano are on the move. Setting up miles in one direction or the other could mean staying in the meat or striking a blank on the previous day’s success. The focus on food concentrations of crustaceans and baitfish will determine the banner days versus the “should have been here yesterday” moments.

Shoreline shark fishing continues to reign as a consistent and exciting fishery over the past weeks. Blacktip migration patterns are in full effect with line of sight views from the beach seeing multiple airborne sharks clearing the surface outside the breakers. With that being said. they’re also cruising closer in on the first and second trough, snatching up whiting and blue runners at every opportunity. Savage power and ferociousness are the words that come to mind when these supercharged species bend the rod. But blacktips aren’t the only species we catch regularly. Other superstars include lemon sharks, Atlantic sharp nose, and sandbar sharks. Shore-based shark fishing trips are producing anywhere from 3 to 7 sharks caught within a four-hour span, and, of course, and all released immediately. As mentioned previously, if you have ever had interest in trying your hand at shark fishing, be sure to study the FWC guidelines and follow that information for a successful catch and release.

Pompano fishing continues its upswing as these fish are charging back north with correlating water temperatures. I see this trend continuing for the next few weeks and into May as well. The schools are scattered currently with separate groups of fish spread from South Florida waters north into Volusia County. Regarding this matter, we’re seeing steady to stellar days this last week fishing pompano in the surf. Sand fleas remain the top bait of choice tipped with white clam Fishbites and the electric chicken crab scent. Tidal swings have commanded the numbers of fish being caught with varying days producing results on the outgoing or last of incoming. Another trend that remains consistent is the afternoon to evening bite, whether the sun is high overhead or setting, firing off for big pompano ranging from 2 to 4 pounds. With the variety of life in the surf, make sure to set days aside for your opportunity to reap the rewards. I’m anticipating the next few weeks to be particularly bountiful.

Spring Space Coast Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing ChartersNo Comments

Spring time surf fishing patterns are in full effect with the lineup of species acting accordingly. Pompano fishing remains a staple this time of year, and we’re seeing a major push beginning to happen on our Space Coast Beaches. Fishing near Sebastian Inlet and Melbourne Beach have seen consistency with the larger pompano and bull whiting. Surf fishing catches in Cocoa Beach brought in whiting, bluefish, black drum and single-digit pompano. Regardless of the beach location, guided shark fishing trips have produced big numbers of blacktip sharks, sandbar sharks and lemon sharks.

This time of year continues to be red hot for shark fishing the beach. If you ever wanted the excitement of a drag screaming acrobatic blacktip shark, then now is your opportunity. While the smaller 3-4 ft. sandbar sharks will keep your rod bent with shorter runs and violent head shakes, it’s the incredible blacktip shark that will steal the show. Commonly mistaken for a spinner shark, the blacktip is notorious for breaking the surface displaying power and agility in its head-shaking leaps and wild twisting contortions. With that being said, be prepared for a battle and use heavy drag to land the shark fast. Our surf fishing equipment for catching sharks has 100 lb. braided line with a casting shark rig on 12/0 circle hook with wire leader. Be sure to land these sharks quickly and expeditiously, dehook and get them back into the water and ensure a safe release.

Warming water temperatures caused the Spanish mackerel bite to thin out between locations, but the bluefish continue to be present and numerous at times. Casting cut bait like chunked mullet or ladyfish will ensure your chance at a load of bluefish. Casting spoons and gotcha plugs with long cast makes smaller spinning tackle fun and exciting to differentiate from traditional surf equipment. Recently some fish have been holding on the inside trough, but higher numbers are being caught on the midrange distance considering the tide.

Whiting, in my opinion, are one of the most under-appreciated species we target, having been on fire on certain days catching whiting in the hundreds on multiple days last week before the front. These bites don’t last forever and are quite a site to see. Using solely Fishbites in the white crab and electric chicken shrimp flavor provided all that was needed to be reeling in doubles each cast. Be sure to vary distance and be disciplined in not overcasting the larger pockets of fish. The majority of successful days came on a mid-tide with fish holding closer to shore feeding in crustaceans. I love me some whiting and the big ones have held a large percentage of total catch with multiple fish weighing in around 2 lbs.!

In summary, the fishing hasn’t been incredible with consistency so fish as much as possible to find the best opportunities. Specifically when the water is dirty, you can expect to see the bonnetheads and catfish in force with the more treasured pompano and whiting showing themselves sparingly. Take note and dedicate more time to the cleaner water conditions, calm seas and light wind days. Those conditional factors alone will dictate the number and types of species to be on hand for the day. Looks like a beautiful week ahead so get out there and catch ‘em up!

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