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Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Forecast, March 2015

Capt. Tom Van Horn
March 1, 2015
Indian River Lagoon - Saltwater Fishing Report

Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Forecast, March 2015

By Captain Tom Van Horn

March's Fishing Forecast

For those who have followed my fishing reports over the years, you've grown to appreciate the same signals I anticipate and look forward to every spring. The sweet fragrance of orange blossoms carried across the lagoon on the shoulders of a west wind, the magnificent bloom of the azaleas and camellias, and the brightly colored pristine buds on the hardwoods and cypress trees all signals spring's arrival and the beginning of the fishing season for blue water anglers.

The Indian River Lagoon's unique diversity has established it as an estuary of national significance. Consisting of three distinct inshore lagoons, five ocean inlets, and 156 miles of inshore, near-shore and offshore reefs all nurtured by warmth and richness of the Gulf Stream distinguishes the IRL as one of the three most diversified biomasses in the world. Transitioning from tropical to temperate climate zones, the IRL system both inshore and offshore supports over 700 species of fish, and some of the best angling in the world.

As the ocean begins its gradual warming phase, 67 to 68 degrees, watch for the progression of baits schools (Atlantic menhaden and silver mullet) from warmer waters into the near-shore waters bringing the cobia and other predators with them. The warmer waters will also draw manta rays into the shallows shadowed by pods of cobia. Other notable species are tripletail around the buoys and under flotsam, heavy weight jack carvalle, large redfish, and sharks shadowing bait schools. Currently, The cobia have started showing up, and once the water warms up and the seas lay down, cobia mania will begin.

Moving out into deeper water, the spring kingfish run should begin with the smaller kings showing up around the middle of March, followed by the smokers, 30 to 50 pounds, in April on the near-shore reefs and wrecks like Pelican Flats and 8A reef. If the bait moves in close to the beach, look for the larger kingfish to follow them. Also, April marks the beginning of the fishing season for many of the blue water anglers with the start of the April/May northern migration of dolphin in 120 feet of water and beyond, and the early part of the run usually includes some of the largest bulls taken all year. Again.

In the inlets and along the beaches, whiting, pompano, bluefish, and Spanish mackerel should remain a staple with sheepshead and black drum holding on jetties and rock piles. As we move into the later part of April, watch for the snook and tarpon action to improve in Sebastian Inlet and then move north following the bait progression.

On the lagoon, rising water levels will draw the slot size redfish schools up onto the shallow flats, with the larger breeder schools holding along the deeper edges and sand bars. On the cooler days, focus your attention on sand pockets or potholes, and once the afternoon sun warms the water, look for tailing fish on the shallow flats. Also, the end of March signals the return of silver mullet to the estuary, and the beginning early morning and late evening top water sea trout and redfish action.

Last but not lease, March brings largemouth, stripers and sunshine bass into the equation as schooling bass begin to form up in consistent patterns on the St Johns River. Last year, fifty bass days were not uncommon as schooling pre-spawn and post spawn fish push schools of menhaden to the surface at first light creating explosive top-water action.

As always, if you have questions on need information, please contact me.

Good luck and good fishing,

Captain Tom Van Horn



407-416-1187 on the water

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Light tackle saltwater fishing guide service on Florida's east central coast. Come fish the Mosquito Lagoon, the Indian River Lagoon and the Banana River Lagoon for redfish, sea trout, snook, tarpon and much more, all less than one hour frome the Orlando theme parks.

Contact Info:

Mosquito Coast Fishing Charters
540 Lake Lenelle Drive
Chuluota, FL 32766
Phone: 407-416-1187
Alt. Phone: 407-366-8085
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