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Upper Florida Keys & Islamorada

Capt. Izzy Donatiello
November 23, 2000
Islamorada - Saltwater Fishing Report

Over the past weeks, the fishing has been hot and cold. A couple of weeks ago, I had two half day trips with Dick Pollocks from the panhandle of Florida. Our first trip was back into the Everglades Park. We were able to catch our limit of 18 to 23 inch Seatrout, plus a couple of Bluefish and jacks. On our second trip, we stayed closer to the ocean, Dick caught his first Bonefish and he had a Tarpon on until it wrapped around an old Lobster line and broke off. I had another half day trip, with Bill and Betty Davis of Avon, N.C.. Bill wanted to catch a shark. We spent about half an hour catching live baits. I anchored and set up a chum line. About a half hour later one of the rods went off. Bill grabbed it, but the fish was gone. I deployed the baits again and we waited. Bill and Betty kept busy catching Seatrout and Ladyfish. At the end of the trip; they had each landed a 6 foot Lemon Shark and on 20# test line.

On the Oceanside, I had a trip with Gerhart and Anita Beecker from Germany. We fish the Islamorada Hump for Blackfin tuna. We caught tuna in the 5 to 10 pound range and a 5 pound Dolphin. In the afternoon; we fished the reef. Anita caught several Yellowtail snappers one of which was 22 inches long. Gerhard was kept busy when a school of 10 pound plus Jack Crevalles come around. On another half day reef trip; I had Bob Ryan from Ohio. The tails didn't cooperate, however, the bottom was hot. We couldn't keep a live bait down without it being eaten. The cooler told the story a 25" Black grouper, A 12# Mutton Snapper and several Mangrove Snappers in the 5 pound range. On Sunday Nov. 12, I had the Nailer party out. On the way out we saw sailfish chasing Ballyhoo in 40 feet of water. We fired out a live bait which was immediately inhaled by a 5# Cero mackerel another live bait met the same faith. The water went quite. We slow trolled for an another hour, without another hit. I anchored up and tried for some snapper and groupers. The first bait down got eaten, but we missed the fish. Another bait resulted in a 4 foot amberjack which came up; but made a final run under the boat and cut the leader. We caught some small Yellowtails and a Kingfish. A Bull Shark eat another bottom bait; we came off the anchor and two anglers later released the fish. We live baited for a while before calling it a day. Of late, there has been a real lack of Kingfish in the area. However, they should be here after this cold front passes,

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Light tackle sportfishing in Islamorada Florida Keys. I specialize in live bait fishing for tarpon, trout, snappers and snook in Everglades National Park. I also fish for sailfish, yellowtail snapper, grouper and dolphin in the blue waters of the Atlantic Ocean.

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Phone: 305-301-2701
Alt. Phone: 305-451-2521
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