Foggy and warm conditions have been the norm this week across the Treasure Coast. The children may also have returned to school. But none of this has calmed the bite of tarpon, both in lagoons and along beaches, snapper on reefs or nosy around structure like dock pilings and piers.
There are still a few weeks to go before the fall mullet race begins in earnest, but when it does, expect predators like trevallies, sharks, tarpon, mackerel, rockfish, snook , trout and many more become energized.
Closures and regulatory changes in effect: We remind anglers of these fishing closures currently underway and those about to begin and end.
- Goldfish: Harvesting of rockfish is prohibited in Indian River Lagoon and Mosquito Lagoon beginning September 1.
- Alligator: Hunting season open from August 15 to November 15. 1. Permit required.
- Snook: The season opens statewide on September 1.
- Lobster: Regular season opened on August 6.
- Dolphin: New fishing regulations began May 1 for state waters. The catch limit is now 5 fish per day per angler; Ship limit is now 30 fish per day. Captain and crew may not be included in the limit.
- Consolidator: The shallow water grouper season is open from May 1 to December 31. This includes gag grouper, red grouper, scamp and six other lesser species.
- Pig : The hogfish harvest is open May 1 through October 31, 2022 in Atlantic Ocean waters off the coast of Florida.
- Tilefish: A commercial fishing closure is in place from July 6 to December 31, 2022.
- Low: Headwaters Lake bass will soon become a catch-all.
For complete Florida fishing regulations, go to MyFWC.com.
at sea ; Big Easy captain Terry Wildey said anglers are enjoying good sheep snapper fishing on the reefs in 70 to 90 feet of water. In addition to sheep, anglers find mangrove snappers, snappers, trevallies and triggerfish. Tarpon and bonito can be fished along beaches in 20-40 feet of water around bait beds like sardines or pogies.
Coastal: It’s been pretty slow around the mess islands this week. Some small spotted sea trout can be caught, but rockfish have been hard to find. Snook seems to be everywhere, but the season doesn’t open until September 1, so release whatever gets caught.
Fresh water: During what is arguably the worst time of year to fish for bass, the bite at Headwaters Lake has been consistent. Anglers find fish in deeper water along drop-offs or holes and not along edges. Bluegill and bluegill fishing in area lakes and canals has been good on live crickets.
at sea ; There have been dolphins and wahoo caught on the current edges for trolling. Deep ledges in 120 to 150 feet of water hold grouper and amberjack. Snapper fishing was steady in 70 to 100 feet of water. Trevally can be fished in 30 to 50 feet of drifting live bait. Tarpon were in the entrance.
Coastal: Turning Basin has been a good place to catch snook and tarpon on sardines or live sardines. There was also good snook fishing around the quay piers, rocky shores and breakwaters. Use live mule to get bitten.
Surf: There is simply too much seaweed to make surf fishing anywhere along Hutchinson Island a worthwhile venture. Anglers will have to spend all their time cleaning the lines of algae and slime grass.
at sea ; Vermilion snapper, triggerfish, mangrove snapper, and sheep snapper can be caught along Six Mile Reef or along the ledges in 70 feet of water. Use dead sardines or cut bait to get bitten. Kingfish have been caught in 40-80 feet of water on live bait. Cobia can be caught in the same depths when kingfisher fishing. The tarpon were schooled along the beaches around the sardine shoals. Sailboats are still thick in 80 to 100 feet of water northeast of the entrance.
Coastal: Snook fishing is very good around the docks at Rocky Point, Sewall’s Point and Sailfish Point on live sardines. Tarpon can be fished in the creek, near the Crossroads and in the channel on sardines or live sardines at rising tide.
Bluegill and bluegill fishing was very good at Taylor Creek and Nubbin Slough on live crickets and red worms. The best bass fishing has been on spinnerbaits or surface frogs caught around clumps of rushes.
Ed Killer is TCPalm’s outside writer. Sign up for his newsletter and other weekly newsletters at profile.tcpalm.com/newsletters/manage. Friend Ed on Facebook at killer edfollow him on Twitter @tcpalmekiller or email him at[email protected].