The weather forecast looks great for the next few days; calmer seas, mild temps, and to top it off the fishing has been pretty darn good!
Offshore- The dolphin fishing has remained very strong for the past week or two. Lots of Mahi-Mahi hanging around in scattered depths. 150-300′ of water between Palm Beach and Jupiter Inlet continues to hold good numbers of fish. Trolling a spread of small ballyhoo, bonita strips, squid, and small jethead lures will surely raise up a few dorado. Any floating debris, color changes, current rips, or birds working is a good area to drag the baits over a few extra times. A few “summertime” bonito, blackfin tuna, kingfish, or even wahoo may show up in that area as well.
For those not so interested in trolling, drifting the same area with live or dead bait will produce some dolphin as well. Look for a good north current and clean blue water when setting up a drift. Chumming with some chunks of sardines, squid, menhaden oil, or block chum will help get the dolphin (and other gamefish, including late season cobia) up around the boat. Live baits, if you can catch them, will work great. Frozen sardines(Florida variety preferably) and squid are great drift baits. Never overlook a nice whole squid floating as a flatline as a great fish producer.
Bottom fishing has been good, and should only get better. Mutton snapper and yellowtail snapper will be the bulk of the catch, but grouper season is open and a few have been caught. Again, sardines are a great bait choice. For fun mixed bag action try dropping a small yellow jig tipped with a bonito chunk or squid. You never know what may grab onto that little jig!
Inshore- Snook season is winding down, so if taking one home for the dinner table sounds like a good idea, go get them now! The linesiders are showing up on the beach, filling in at the inlet, and hanging around the bridges at night. Along the beach Rapala X-Raps and small white jigs are a good choice. Look for the snook to be cruising north and south in the first trough. The bridges are holding good numbers of snook, and fishing at night is the only way to go. Drifting live shrimp with the current is a great bait choice. A flair hawk is a great lure choice for the bridges as well.
Mangrove snapper and sheepshead are hanging around the bridges as well. Shrimp, live of cut pieces, is a great bait choice to fool those stubborn fish around the pilings. Moonfish(aka lookdown) and sandperch have been caught around the bridges as well.
SURF/PIER- The pompano fishing has slowed down a bit, but it isn’t done just yet. Clams and sandleas continue to produce a few bites from the pompano. For those not into fishing bait, pompano jigs(like Doc’s Goofy Jig) may still get a few bites. Scattered schools of spanish mackerel have been moving up and down the beach and a few are always hanging around the pier. White Crappie Jigs are a good choice from the pier for the mackerel. The small profile matches a glass minnow nicely. As mentioned above, the snook are showing up along the beach. Fish low light periods for best action, or try and sight cast them in good light for a real challenge!
Happy Early Mother’s Day to any Mom’s checking out the fishing report (Kids and Dad’s don’t forget about Mom this weekend!)