Marathon and Middle Keys Report
Capt. Bob Brown
March 28, 2013
Marathon - Saltwater Fishing Report
Unseasonably cold weather has put a change in the air temporarily as the spring species like Tarpon and Mahi that were heating up have cooled a bit the past few days. The bright side however is that the cooler weather has perked up the Sailfish and King Mackerel bite on the edge of the reef. Multi sailfish hookups have been common the past few days and some King Mackerel up to 40lb have been hitting the docks here at the 7 mile marina in Marathon. Plenty of Cobia have been pushed to the Atlantic side of the Island chain also by the northerly winds helping the migration of these powerful good eating critters into the area. Some cobia recently have been up to 80lb! Most common have been the 30-50lb class oceanside and up to about 30lb bayside.
Offshore the blackfin tuna bite has been excellent at the Marathon west hump with plenty of smaller school fish biting on the troll. Some larger ones are in the mix trolling and the larger fish have been biting on live pilchards or small goggle eyes and deep jigging with butterfly jigs. Some large Mahi were showing up on the scene before this cool snap so once the winds modify back around to the east southeast, look for the Dolphin to heat up again. Nice catches of schoolie sized fish were starting to hit the docks with some nice slammers up to 50lb all up and down the Keys. A few Wahoo still around too but slower than they were back in January and February. The queen snapper bite has been decent in the deeper depths with some snowy grouper consistently biting also. Get your one and go. Swordfish have been biting but the windy weather has kept most boats from trying it lately however one large fish in the 250lb range was caught last week.
The reef fishing has been excellent for yellowtail snapper and grouper even though the grouper must be released, there seems to be plenty of them around recently. Nice Mutton Snapper have been coming in from the oceanside wrecks along with some large Amberjack, Jack Crevalle, and Almaco Jacks. A few African Pompano and Permit have also been showing up on the oceanside wrecks inside of 130ft.
Bayside fishing was going good up until the record cold snap the past couple days. Plenty of nice sharks, snapper, cobia, grouper, trout, redfish and various species of jacks. Bonefish were perking up on the flats as well. Look for all this action to heat back up in the coming week as temperatures heat back up and water temps modify. If you would like more info on fishing in the middle keys area, check out our web site. Good luck in all your fishing adventures!
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