We had some great catches here the past week fishing in Islamorada in April. The weather was very crummy yesterday, with solid rain all day, but we can't control the weather and I suppose we were due for it. The mahi bite defitely picked the past week compared to the week before. Still a few days about 1/2 the boats would get them and 1/2 wouldn't, but overall it definitely has been getting more and more consistent. It should only improve as we get into May. A few boats had as many as 30 fish on some full day charters, including schoolies (3 - 5 lb fish) and a quite a few medium size fish (gaffers) in the 8 - 12 lb range. There was a couple slammers up to 30 lbs too. The fish have been caught by just trolling, as well as on birds and floating debris. There's been some nice tripletail around the debris and a few wahoo too.
On the humps we are catching some blackfin tuna and amberjacks. The Tuna have been from 3 - 15 lbs, and the amberjack from 20 - 50 lbs. There's been some big sharks around the humps too.
Today is the last day we have to release shallow water groupers aka "reef groupers" for the rest of year. I know everyone will be excited when they get catch that big grouper starting May 1st, since they will be able to bring it home for the dinner now. A lot of boats have released black, gag, and red groupers the past month here. We've also had some quality size yellowtail snapper on the reef lately, and May is a great month to catch the "flags" , with fish in the 18" - 24" range. The permit have been around the wrecks lately too. I haven't seen any cobia the past week, but I'm sure there is a school out there somewhere, you just have to put in the time to look for them. There was a couple sailfish caught the past week, and I think we'll see the occasional sailfish caught and released the next month. There's been some king mackerel on the wrecks as well, both "snakes" in the 4 to 10 lb range, but the Kalex had a pair of 40 lb smokers the other day.
Way offshore we have been doing some daytime swordfishing. My last trip we had 2 fish, keeping a 153 lber and releasing a 50 lber, but the trip before we didn't captalize on our shot and pulled the hook on a sword. If you ever want to try your luck at getting a broadbill the upcoming months are prime time. I recently sold my boat, Bn'M II, and will be running some trips on the Bn'M as well as the Catch 22. If you'd like to fish with me, Capt. Nick Stanczyk, just mention it when you call the booking office to book your fishing trip at 305 664 2461.
We also have 2 great fishing tournaments coming up in May. The first is the Gotta Luv Them Charity Dolphin (mahi)Tournament. It's on May 16th. You don't have to be a serious fisherman to enter. If you have your own boat or are going on a charter and want a little competition and the chance to win some $$$ you should sign up. Many of the proceeds go to a good cause as well. It's the combination of the 3 biggest fish added together. The Second tournament we are hosting is the first annual Pelagic Triple Crown Memorial Day Classic on May 25th. This tournament has 2 seperate divisions, and is going to be nothing but FUN! There's a blue water division and a reef division. "Jungle Rules" apply, so if you have your kids out fishing and they need a little help, jump right in! Mahi, Wahoo, Tuna, Amberjack, Snapper, Grouper, and Mackerel can all put you in the winners circle. Bring your own boat, or go on a local charter boat! Both tournaments are going to have a kick off party the night before, and an awards banquet with dinner the night after the fishing. The weigh in Station will be Bud n' Mary's Marina.
Get on down here while the fishing is good! Give the marina a call at 305 664 2461 to book your next fishing adventure!
Capt Nick Stanczyk