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Tarpon, Permit and Leprechauns

Capt. Pete Rowney
March 20, 2014
Islamorada - Saltwater Fishing Report

Well it's mid-March and apparently we're not going to have winter, once again. Air and water temps have been up the last two months and not surprisingly the fishing has been hot as well. The spooky thing too has been the lack of wind. Not really sure what that's all about but I'll take it since it seemed like it blew all of 2013. With a reasonably consistent weather pattern and the warmer than normal temps, tarpon have been showing up big time. Not only in numbers but in size as well. We've put in the air a number of fish well over a hundred pounds. They can be hard to stay buttoned up to but they sure are fun to watch! The mood of the fish is in direct relationship to the weather however. Since it is still "winter" the occasional north wind can either give them a case of lockjaw or simply push them out. The good thing is that the cold snaps we've had have all been short in duration with things normalizing after a couple of days. I don't care what the species, consistent weather lends itself to good fishing. While it's hard not to get distracted by telephone pole-sized tarpon, there just happens to be another species that has been making a solid showing. Mr. Permit. March is one of the best months of the year to get a shot on these guys, as they get bunched up before spawning offshore. On calm days you can find big schools of permit floating, tails spiked out and looking sexy. Man, I love those fish! Permit are synonomous with crabs but they have no problem eating tarpon flies. Just strip like hell! Bonefishing has been hit or miss. Some days have been good and some have been dismal. It just comes with the territory. Out in the backcountry the redfish and snook fishing is still solid with some days better than others. Looking forward to fishing the new and full moons in April for redfish. It's one of the best times to get into large schools of large fish. Love seeing tons of tails on calm mornings. Seeing more and more snook and even though they're numbers are not close to what they used to be they are definitely making a comeback. Tarpon season will be in full swing before you know it so get on it before it's too late! Until next time. -Pete

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Fly fishing and light tackle guide serving Islamorada, the Upper Keys and Everglades National Park.

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121 Key Heights Dr
Tavernier, FL
Phone: 305-393-7773
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