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Key west Delphfishing week of 1-8-08

Key Largo to Key West - including Florida Bay, the Marquesas and the Dry Tortugas.

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Key west Delphfishing week of 1-8-08

Postby capt john emery » Tue Jan 15, 2008 11:58 am

With the passing of the latest cold front, the winds have begun to subside. The water temperature has dropped and the winter fishing is finally here. Sailfish are starting to show along with some blackfin tuna and some wahoo. The big action has been with large kingfish, 30, 40 pounds and more. They were here in the gulf just before the front hit and now they are everywhere. Oceanside along the reef to the Tortugas and in the gulf thru out the Grouper Bar. The latter will only get better as the water clears and the Spanish mackerel school in the area. Large schools of Spanish mackerel have been prevalent in the Quicksands as well as Hawks Channel and the gulf. Off shore, the Sword fishing has been phenomenal. Our boats have been landing at least one Swordfish every day, but more commonly two to four per day. As this fishery gains in popularity, I would like to take a minute to express the importance keeping this a sport fishery. I recommend practicing catch and release as much as possible and although the NMFS allows up to as many as three per vessel per day, with three or more anglers, our boats have been honoring a self-imposed daily bag limit of one fish per vessel, per day. Releasing the rest only enhances our chances of this fishery remaining great for years to come.

The red snapper are back in good numbers but the muttons are here in numbers that I haven’t seen in several years. Some of the latter have been running up to around 20 pounds. Black, Gag, and Scamp grouper have been showing up in greater numbers. The last trip yielded full bag limits of Blacks with several releases due to the high numbers of cooperative fish. It looks like a banner season for bottom dwellers.

This cooler water should bring the large Ciro mackerel and large schools of Jack Crevalle to the reef lines and Hawks Channel. Cobia were everywhere just before the front, however, I haven’t had a chance to verify their presence since the front because of the fantastic fishing everywhere else.

The flats have been crushed with the cold weather with reports from all around the area of dead Barracuda’s and Snook throughout the backcountry and Florida Bay. The flats should be off until the water temperatures get back up 70 or more degrees and hold there for a week or more.

That’s it for now. Tight lines and good fishing. Capt. Ralph Delph

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Modified by capt john emery at 7:51 AM 1/15/2008
capt john emery
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Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 2:00 pm
Location: miami, Florida

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