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March 2022

Cocoa Beach to Melbourne Beach Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

Pompano resurgence hits the Space Coast! Pompano and whiting came back with a vengeance last week while surf fishing near Cocoa Beach south to Melbourne Beach. Bluefish continued their seasonal onslaught while catfish and bonnethead sharks filled in the blanks. Clean water graced the coast for the latter half of the week before the front that hit over the weekend. To sum it up, it looks like we’re in for a good run of surf fishing lining up for the next couple of weeks.

The signature strike of a surf-roaming pompano excited our beach fishing charter clients. Towering rods bent over with the telltale signs signified a pompano on the line. The rig of choice was a combination pompano rig with pink floats and clam Fishbites tipped with fresh shrimp and sand fleas. This same rig accounted for multiple other species as well including black drum, bluefish and whiting.

Leaving no exception for the glorification of pompano had the whiting fighting for their shot at fame. They came in numbers and size this last week while surf fishing near Patrick Air Force Base and Melbourne Beach. On specific days these fish only wanted the Fishbites with a smaller profile in lieu of traditional surf fishing baits like sand fleas, clam and shrimp. As recommended, always try a broad array of baits to help isolate the feeding patterns of intended species.

Dirty water and high winds culminated on certain days to create an ideal environment for catfish and bonnethead sharks to shine. While interested pompano and whiting struggled to find bait over the scent-feeding species, it became a challenge to fish through these unintended species for our prized fish. When in doubt, make it stand out! Bright floats and color change rip currents minimize certain catches on days where conditions are challenging. Make your rigs custom to the day to increase results.

No matter the conditions or winds it never put a damper on shark fishing charters. Blacktips are in full force and we had at least one if not multiple hookups on each shark fishing trip. Fresh chunked baits along with live bait had them chewing. Heavy tackle and tight drag helps in fighting these sporadic sharks to an expeditious catch and release. In conclusion, I would say get out and take part in the surf fishing over the next few weeks. Conditions look favorable for this week and beyond.

Cocoa Beach Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

What to do with surf fishing conditions of late? As we transition from the colder winter months into the warming spring ocean temperatures, things are beginning to look up. Consistency was difficult if not impossible for surf fishing anglers along Brevard County’s Space Coast over the prior two weeks. With that being said, beach fishing charters provided a wide array of species to be caught from the shore. Black drum, bluefish, whiting, pompano and Jack crevalle to name a few. Each day presented its own challenges and opportunities, but with persistence, our efforts paid off.

Black drum continue to infiltrate local beaches with fishing near Cocoa Beach and south showing daily catches. Puppy drum were caught fishing with pompano rigs tipped with shrimp and clam. Fishbites in the crab and clam flavor were also a favorite during these times. While the majority of the black drum caught were keeper size, there are a few that don’t make the cut and had to be released. These fish seem to prefer the first trough as that is where we had the most fortune when targeting them.

surf fishing for black drum

Surf Fishing for Black Drum

When in doubt, blast it out! As mentioned previously, a lot of the black drums were caught in the first trough. With that being said, there are a plethora of opportunities when casting further out to the second trough or sandbar. Bluefish in all sizes were a sure-fire bet to bend rods along with Jack crevalle and the occasional pompano. Fresh chunked bait accounted for the majority of keeper bluefish, although lots of bluefish, jacks and pompano were caught with sand fleas, shrimp and Fishbites.

Diversity held true with our daily catches racking up into the double digits on different species. Croakers, catfish, and sharks were also particularly active even though some days they weren’t our intended species, which makes it all the more interesting when one does get a bite while enjoying a day of beach fishing. Not to mention, the shark activity is on an elevated level. Reeling in many catches could be challenging before a shark eats your intended species. One way to alleviate this is to be sure and tighten the drag with a rapid retrieve when necessary to minimize the times of reeling in a cutoff line from a shark.

Space Coast Family Fun Fishing Charters

In conclusion, the waters have warmed to an ideal temperature for pompano and whiting to become a main staple again fishing the surf. Be sure to pay attention to the water clarity for maximizing any opportunities.

Shark fishing charters will also continue to be red hot, as this time of year they’re out in abundance. Bluefish and black drum will still be on tap for the near term until we reach water temperatures that aren’t conducive. All in all, it’s a great time of year to go out and go fishing. So have fun and see what’s out there waiting for you!

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