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Space Coast Summer Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

June surf fishing typically holds trophy catches for those looking for large snook and tarpon. While summertime surf conditions create a perfect scenario for these predatory species to roam the beaches feeding on baitfish. June, July, and August are personally my favorite times of the year to target them with live bait and artificial lures. Included with snook and tarpon we’ll see great catches of whiting, croakers and pompano.

Summer Snook Fishing

With that being said the shark fishing will continue a great addition to anyone looking at hooking blacktip sharks as well. The name of the game during the summer months is to get out early or later when the temperatures aren’t scorching hot. These feeding periods will consist of snook and tarpon crashing baitfish in the first and second trough.

Shark Fishing Charters in Cocoa Beach

Live baitfish including mullet and croakers either freelined or rigged with a split shot generally see the most success. Although another great way of targeting snook or tarpon will be to enact the use of swim baits, bucktails or suspended plugs casting diagonally to the shore with a steady retrieve. It’s worth mentioning that large breeding snook along with tarpon should be handled with care and to emphasize a quick release with minimal exposure out of the water.

 

Pompano fishing this time of year usually doesn’t make the headlines but it’s worth noting that our resident pompano will be out in force. The key to having success will be those surf fishing anglers willing to seek out the clean water and runouts. Surf fishing near Melbourne Beach north to Cocoa Beach should have tight concentrations of fish throughout the Space Coast region.

Summer Space Coast Pompano Fishing

Pompano rigs with shrimp or clam flavored Fishbites combined with live sandfleas or fresh peeled shrimp will have the most fortune. By far the most active species during the summer months are whiting and croakers. At times the bite can make for nonstop action reeling one in after another, often with two on at once. A great way to repurpose the croakers are to rig them on a live bait rig with a fish finder setup on a one to two ounce sliding weight and recast in the first trough.

 

Beach fishing charters catching loads of whiting make for a great family fun experience and on top of that whiting make phenomenal table fare. Everyone that hits the shore looks like a fish taco to me. In conclusion look for the weeks and months ahead to consider heading to the beach for surf fishing fun. Diversified setups with pompano rigs and live bait rigs will have you covering all your bases for snook, tarpon, whiting, croakers and pompano.

Family Fun Surf Fishing Charters

If your feeling extra ambitious get a large chunked bait rigged up for the shark fishing scene that is sure to be a hit. Get out on the shore before work or after work to enjoy the height of this summer surf fishing season.

Surf Fishing Report for Melbourne and Cocoa Beach Florida

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

Surf fishing anglers scattered across Space Coast beaches celebrated many catches during the month of March. Pompano fishing near Melbourne Beach and Cocoa Beach hit spurts of schooling fish with excellent catches followed up by a whiting bite that created nonstop action. Everything from bluefish to Jack crevalle, croakers and bonnethead sharks made it a scenario where one could only guess what was on the line. Rounding off this diversified fish species list were the blacktip sharks that continue their presence off local beaches.

Family Fun Surf Fishing Charters

For the most part, the surf fishing conditions were optimal many days in the previous weeks with ideal water clarity and correlated temperatures to match. This in turn fired up the pompano to charge back north from south Florida beaches. The largest of pompano ranged from 16” up to 19” and were the majority of catches for multiple weeks on end. Fresh peeled shrimp or sand fleas were the baits of choice, rigged with Fishbites in the crab or clam flavor on a standard pompano rig. While many of the fish roamed the outside sandbars, there was a decent percentage that came from the first and second trough.

Join us on a fun surf fishing adventure!

Family fishing charters couldn’t get enough of the action with the whiting infiltration that ensued with kids reeling in doubled-up whiting cast after cast. This kind of whiting bite always brings joy when it heightens anglers activity level scurrying from rod to rod. Certain days brought as much whiting as one could handle while selectively keeping the largest for a fine meal. First and second trough casts pulled them in by the twos with Fishbites alone being all one needed to catch.

Pompano Surf Fishing

With all the pompano, whiting and bluefish catches to keep one running, the trophy catches in the mix are worth a mention. Giant jack crevalle and sharks were by far the largest species caught in weeks prior. Jack crevalle exceeding 40 pounds have been blitzing up and down the coast from Sebastian Inlet to Port Canaveral. While many of the fish tend to be out of range of surf fishermen they occasionally skim in range of shore-casting anglers. This has resulted in some giants being landed on light tackle and a feat to be recognized.

Jack Crevalle put on a hard fight for anglers!

Shark fishing charters paved the way for big time catches of blacktip sharks using fresh chunked bait. Often seen jumping and crashing through the surf this time of year, they are extremely prevalent currently. You might lose a few of your fish catches to them as inundated as the Space Coast waters are with sharks at the moment. Regardless, when targeting sharks they make for one heck of a fight and a memory for all. Heavy tackle with a quick battle to the shores and an expeditious release ensures we’ll maintain this fishery for generations to come. Take advantage of the good weather windows and hit the shores for beach fishing fun.

Surf Fishing for Sharks in the Space Coast

Book a shark surf fishing charter!

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!

Winter Space Coast Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

Family fishing charters have anglers of all ages embracing the holiday spirit with catches of pompano, whiting, bluefish, Spanish mackerel and sharks. Celebrating the gathering of friends and family with absolute pristine weather conditions had our clients looking to find surf fishing success on these beautiful December days. Each species had ups and downs with the daily rotation of the week, but the bluefish, mackerel and sharks stood out above the rest. Shark fishing trips produced great results of blacktip sharks on fresh chunked bait and some whole baits as well.

Surf Fishing in Cocoa Beach

The surf fishing near Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral continued to see more of the puppy black drum caught than many other regions in Brevard County. Also, larger pompano were caught in these same areas along with the whiting and bluefish. Shark fishing in these areas wasn’t as productive though as they were in the central and southern beaches. Depending on the day and your intended species, it was quite the crapshoot staying on top of a good bite in one location.

Kids fishing trips were an absolute blast this week, though, with nonstop action on bluefish, small jack crevalle and Spanish mackerel kept the kids reeling them in one after another. This bite remained red hot for the remainder of the week and fun was had by all who took part. Even when the pompano weren’t in full force like the weeks prior, these rod-bending and acrobatic bluefish and mackerel made up the ground for a fun time fishing. Green floats with chunked baits did the trick for the most part. And as usual, the Gotcha lures and spoons were utilized for select species.

Family Fun Surf Fishing Trips in Sebastian

With all the life boiling under the surface along the Brevard County beaches, it made for shark fishing charters to find optimal conditions. Bait definitely played a role as the sharks seemed to either want your live fish that was being retrieved on a pompano rig or a freshly cut chunked bait. With that being said, we caught lots of large sharks from the shore using entire fish carcasses for bait. So make sure you’re varying your methods as even these toothy predators seem to have specific preferences on a day-to-day basis.

Sheepshead Surf Fishing in Melbourne Beach

As for the premier target species of pompano and whiting, it seems to have dipped a bit for the week prior. Surf fishing anglers are still catching large keeper size pompano but just not seeing the numbers they were in the first two weeks of the month. Most fish caught had been enticed with live or blanched sand fleas or fresh clam on the standard pompano rig with the floats performing well. With the outlook for stellar weather and schools of pompano and whiting continue to move up and down the coast, it’s just a matter of putting yourself in the right position with the selected baits to see success. Enjoy the holiday break and hit the surf for family fun in the sun!

Cape Canaveral to Sebastian Inlet Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

At last, pompano have finally made their presence known here along the Space Coast. Among the pompano, we’re also seeing black drum, whiting, Spanish mackerel, bluefish and sharks cruising the surf. Fishing near Cape Canaveral and Cocoa Beach saw an increasing number of black drum, pompano and whiting. Meanwhile, Central and South Brevard County beaches including Indialantic, Melbourne Beach and Sebastian saw a larger influx of bluefish, whiting, Spanish mackerel and keeper pompano with many short pompano mixed in. All in all the surf fishing conditions finally cooperated with the abating weather of November in the rearview mirror so there’s much to celebrate.

Pompano Surf Fishing

Consistency seemed to be increasingly difficult to come by in the week prior with many anglers being skunked or off the trail of the target species. Reading through all the reports on social media and talking directly with fellow anglers it seemed to be an uneven scenario for different groups of fisherman. While some had great luck with pompano and whiting, it seemed to leave twice as many scratching their heads about the lack of success. The fish are absolutely present in the waters and fooling them into biting may be the issue to combat. We’ll go into this more in the following paragraph, but the key is to vary your rigging and setups to find what’s working. Don’t stick with your same program if you’re not having luck and a few others are.

Surf Fishing for Black Drum

Get in the habit of experimenting with the variables that play into a productive day. Consider everything from water temperature to water clarity, to barometric pressure, tidal influence, bait on offer, presentation, bait scent, and much more. While some find tremendous success and others struggle, especially in the prior week, it has to do with these many variables that are involved in the fishing and surf fishing realm. So try different rigs, places, tides and baits to see what works best for you and adjust accordingly as the conditions change.

Sebastian Inlet Surf Fishing

While the blue fish and Spanish mackerel have kept the spin casting anglers armed with spoons plenty busy, it’s the pompano and whiting that we’ll focus on this week. One factor to note was the location of the fish whether it be near the shore or out on the sandbar. Our fishing clients produced well with many fish coming right at the shore edge while other tides and water conditions mandated casting out to 100-120 plus yards. Observing these variations makes it all the more important to keep a constant pulse and stagger gear to achieve the best results. Once again the Fishbites crab and clam scent in the white, chartreuse and electric chicken worked best and these synthetic scents were matched with live or blanched sand fleas or clams. It’s an exciting time to hit the beach for surf fishing in this ideal weather. There is nothing like enjoying the spoils of a whole fresh baked pompano or blackened whiting tacos to share with family and friends.

Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing

Or if it’s a rod you’re looking to bend, shark fishing charters continue to produce many blacktips and lemon sharks for shore-bound anglers. The forecast looks like continuing beneficial weather patterns so there’s plenty of opportunity on hand to hit the shore for surf fishing. So in summary, get out there and have fun!

Space Coast Family Fun Surf Fishing

Late Fall Space Coast Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

Surf fishing conditions continue to be a roller coaster ride for the month of  November. Without any consistent patterns holding true, it’s been challenging for beach fishing to take place with much efficacy. Wind, waves and dirty water clarity have been factors thwarting the beach fishing scene along the Space Coast. Front after front with prevailing North and  Northeast winds tampered with ever developing a stable surf fishery. For those who persisted, the rewards were sharks, whiting, croakers, catfish,  bluefish, pompano and Jack crevalle.

Surf Fishing for Pompano

Fishing near Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral provided more ideal fishing conditions in the early part of the week. Catches of pompano and whiting along with bluefish and Jack Crevalle were caught. Pleasantly surprised to not have to deal with seaweed during the first part of the week before the winds cranked up. The bluefish were chewing heavily on shrimp and cut bait, along with the occasional Jack crevalle and ladyfish.

Pompano fishing still isn’t happening to the dissatisfaction of most. With the unruly conditions and current location of the major schools, it’s been like watching paint dry in anticipation. The warmer weather from the prior week actually stabilized ocean temperatures halting the flooding migration of fish south. These fish are currently being caught in numbers from  Daytona to Jacksonville so the times coming even though we probably still have a week or two before the floodgates open up.

Space Coast Surf Fishing for Sheepshead

Without the pompano fishing to take the cake, we’ve relied on shark fishing trips to excite surf fishing clients looking to bend the rod. This fishery still hasn’t disappointed with multiple hookups possible in a four-hour fishing trip. The key is the fresh cut bait with mullet being particularly successful this week along with croakers. There’s been a surplus of croakers when fishing the first or second trough so don’t be worried about the capacity to acquire fresh bait.

Shark Fishing Sebastian Inlet

As mentioned before this week hasn’t been all rainbows and unicorns in the surf fishing world. Dirty water conditions infiltrated the central and southern beaches bringing with it heaps of catfish. As any experienced surf fishing angler knows this can be discouraging and downright exhausting catching one after another. Even though our beach fishing charters have been catching pompano, sheepshead, whiting and bluefish,  it hasn’t been without sifting through the high numbers of kitty cats.

Surf Fishing Cocoa Beach

Looking forward to this weekend as the conditions towards the weekend began to improve. Be the first one to know if the Pompano have arrived by being persistent and getting your lines wet over the holiday weekend. If bending the rod is your goal keep half your gear fishing chunked bait in close for bluefish, Jack crevalle and sharks. Take the other half of the gear and dial it up for pompano, sheepshead, whiting and black drum using Fishbites with sandfleas, shrimp or clams. Enjoy the weekend with family and friends and hit the sand for some fun in the sun!

Space Coast Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

Stars are beginning to align for the surf fishing areas encompassing the Space Coast. While the mullet run slowly fades away, the recent cooler temps have stimulated pompano to trickle into area waters. It’s not with immense consistency just yet, but it’s right on the bubble. We still need the water temperatures to come down for that full out pompano run to ignite.

Pompano catches have begun a steady uptick with the majority of anglers finding healthy keeper pompano while having to pick through the shorts. With that being said, the ones that do measure are reaching the 1.5- 2.5 lb mark. These are the silver and gold species most have been waiting for to hit the shores. While the bluefish, ladyfish, and jack crevalle may have you guessing what’s on the line, the pompano always stand out with a parallel run to shore and a sharp blitz inward throughout the fight. Make sure to keep steady pressure and be ready to take up the slack when they charge the beach.

Shark fishing from shore continues its red hot run with all the food sources a shark could ask for being present. Ladyfish, bluefish, jack crevalle, and Spanish mackerel feeding on glass minnows, hornbellies and mullet make it advantageous for sharks to have their choice. Crashing through the surf, blacktips are often seen voraciously terrorizing the offerings on hand. Fresh chunked bait continues to work magic for catching these sharks from the surf, but live bait has also worked well.

Looking forward to the next few weeks, I’m expecting the Spanish mackerel and bluefish bite to remain strong. Also anticipating the pompano numbers becoming more consistent as the water temperature drops and larger schools infiltrate our Brevard County waters. Compounding the anticipation for pompano, I expect to see the larger bull whiting show up. They are absolutely one of my favorite table fare fish from the surf. All in all, it’s shaping up to be a great month of fishing. The weather will be ripping and roaring over the next few days so it may take some time to settle into next week. Good luck and tight lines.

Space Coast Surf Fishing Report

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

The seaweed battle continues along Space Coast beaches as the theme continues from previous weeks. Each day holds its own challenges with this major inhibitor to surf fishing effectively. While perseverance pays, it’s worth noting the challenges the seaweed has reeked on local surf fishing. For those that choose to battle with this seaweed onslaught, they’ve been rewarded with catches of shark, bluefish, whiting, Jack crevalle and pompano, with the pompano mostly under the legal size limit.

Youth angler landing a slightly undersize pompano looking for the big ones.

All being considered, the shark fishing charters stood out this week over all other species catches. Numerous Blacktip sharks were caught while lemons and sandbar sharks were more sporadic. Unleashing the thrill of these powerful predators had surf fishing clients stoked to land them in good numbers. Fresh cut bait stole the show once again and it’s highly recommended over the frozen baits especially in recent weeks. Your bait of choice will prove night and day results, so put in the work and get the freshest possible chunked bait.

Shark fishing charters providing numerous shark catches.

Light tackle spinning gear continued its production with bluefish, jacks, ladyfish and blue runners for those stalking the shorelines with a spoon or swim bait. With the mullet beginning to show signs of inconsistency, having your artificial game prepared will help nullify the lack of live bait for pitching in the trough. Using this repetitive casting and retrieving method is one way to deter significant amounts of seaweed accumulating on one’s line. The species listed were the most common catches with artificial and live baits but snook, flounder and tarpon still remain a possibility although that probability is lower than weeks past.

Rod bending action for blacktip sharks in the surf.

 

Surf fishing the Sebastian Inlet

Pompano fishing looks to pick up as spontaneous catches of late should find more consistency with a drop in the water temperatures. Currently, the water clarity has improved and now it’s just a fingers-crossed situation that the seaweed situation will improve. Expect better numbers of whiting and smaller drums with this coinciding cold front approaching. Pompano rigs with fresh shrimp have fared better of late, so my recommendation would be to have sand fleas, shrimp and Fishbites on hand for the above-mentioned species.

Double pompano surf fishing Melbourne beach.

Space Coast Fall Mullet Run

By Cocoa Beach Surf Fishing Charters

The fall mullet run in Florida has hit full stride over the past week. Schools of baitfish with the majority being mullet are pouring down Space Coast beaches. This in turn has triggered exceptional surf fishing with snook, flounder, bluefish, and ladyfish taking full advantage of this opportunity. With the listed species having been caught up and down the Brevard coast, the majority of consistent catches are being reported from Patrick Air Force Base south to Sebastian Inlet.

Fall Mullet Run on the Space Coast

Taking part in this fishery can be multifaceted with many options available. My preferred method involves live bait or artificial lures with a minimal setup to keep things mobile. Casting rod, castnet and small tackle bag is all that’s needed. Check multiple locations for key signs of life including diving birds, fleeing baitfish and crashing fish. Once you find the increased activity, deploy a live mullet, croaker or threadfin in the first trough and hang on. If live bait isn’t an option, walk the shores in the same pattern with a bucktail jig, lipped diving plug, or swim bait.

Fall Snook Fishing on the Space Coast

Presentation holds the key to success so take note of the conditions on hand. The size of the surf, current, and wind dictates what size weight and how to hook the bait for the preferred action desired. I prefer the bait slightly restricted rolling in the trough being pulled in and out with the wave’s motion. Depending on conditions, use anywhere from a split shot to a two-ounce weight to maintain the ideal areas for ambush feeding. Light tackle makes a ton of fun for catching these fish in the shallower depths, rewarding the efforts of surf anglers with prized species of snook and flounder.

Surf Fishing for Flounder

Realizing the changing of the seasons is just on the horizon has many anglers efforts focused on the mullet run, but this doesn’t mean the traditional surf fishing method with pompano rigs isn’t an effective approach currently. Whiting continues to be consistent on a rising tide and also pompano with the majority being undersized. Fishbites and live sand fleas continue to perform best when fishing this rising tide targeting the outflows running off the beach. Don’t be surprised if a snook, bluefish or ladyfish engulf this setup as well. Additionally, the pompano rig with live or dead mullet has accounted for many snook catches as well.

In summary, I’m excited to keep working the bait schools and dabble with.

Cocoa Beach & Sebastian Inlet Snook Fishing

the pompano and whiting. Knowing just around the corner the snook and baitfish will abate leading into the full-blown pompano run. Changing out gear and tactics for chasing one of my favorite fish will return just as soon as the water temperature creeps down. So for now it’s taking advantage of the wild fishery that is the fall mullet run and prepping the tackle for the first schools of pompano that are soon to arrive. Enjoy the explosiveness that’s defining our fishery currently and what’s coming in the upcoming months.

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