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Marco Island, Ft. Myers & Boca Grande

Capt. Scott Hughes
March 6, 2000
Fort Myers - Saltwater Fishing Report

Bait's Here, Life is Good!

Itís officially spring when a front comes through and it doesnít affect fishing very much. Bait is everywhere from Marco Island to Ft Myers. This means the fish are about to be here also. Large schools are holding in the usual areas off the beach in Cape Romano and Marco River Pass. San Carlos Pass is holding large threads and sardines on a rising tide. During low tide youíll have to find your favorite grass flat and chum until they show up. If your not a person experienced in catching live bait, shrimp are still large and the fish will always bite shrimp.

The snook are finally starting to bite in Marco Island. Sardines are the top choices for bait with jigs and flies taking a few in the backcountry. Redfish are also on the flats on the outside and are hitting sardines and gold spoons. Trout fishing isnít as good as it should be but if you work hard youíll be rewarded with some choice 20+ inchers. Dragging live sardines will produce the biggest and jigs will produce the numbers. Mackerel are everywhere and will hit flies, jigs and spoons. Look for birds or ďfootballingĒ fish to locate schools. Pompano are still biting. The passes and points of islands are the best places to look. Jigs tipped with shrimp have produced the best results. There are reports of some early season tarpon moving up, but I havenít had the time to go look. Iím going to try this week.

The Ft Myers area is producing a variety of species from snook and redfish to record numbers of sheephead and mackerel. My anglers were kept busy with plenty of trout, mackerel, and ladyfish on the flats. We used jigs tipped with shrimp to catch most of them. We caught limits of large sheephead to about 6 pounds in the area passes on a couple of occasions this week. It should be good through the spring tides this week. One notable catch this week was a 28-inch Gag Grouper that Tim Miller caught in one of my snook holes. He fought him for about 15 minutes if you count the time he was hung in the trees. When I tried to break the line it pulled the fish out and he finally landed the trophy. Large jacks are around the creeks in the mouth of the river and reds and snook are in the deep backcountry around Pine Island. Shrimp or sardines are your best for these fish. If you use shrimp youíll probably get a few mangrove snapper as well.

Good Luck!

Capt. Scott Hughes

Blackwater Fishing Charters

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I specialize in light tackle saltwater, and fly fishing from the backcountry of the 10,000 Islands to flats of Pine Island Sound and the bay system of Charlotte Harbor. I have pick-up locations out of Ft Myers, Marco Island, Pine Island, Punta Gorda and Boca Grande. I like to target big fish. During warm months, tarpon, sharks, snook, redfish, cobia, king mackerel and big jacks are the main species sought after. Most of the winter months are devoted to redfish, trout, snook and grouper. Whether

Contact Info:

Blackwater Charters
12571 Burnt Store Rd
Punta Gorda, FL 33955
Phone: 941-575-2389
Alt. Phone: 941-628-4247
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