Cape Canaveral to Sebastian Inlet
August 29, 2007
Melbourne - Saltwater Fishing Report
Florida Surf Fishing Report for:
Cape Canaveral to Sebastian Inlet
Anglers getting out early or late in the day are finding some cooperative fish up and down Brevard County beaches. Due to the intense August heat, most fish are active before about 10 a.m. and again after about 5 p.m. Often the best catches come right before first light or just after dusk.
Black margates, whiting and sheepshead are the most plentiful surf species right now, with a scattering of Spanish mackerel, jack crevalle and bluefish roaming around, especially near inlets, bridges or other structure. Live sandfleas are probably the best bet for the margates, sheepies and whiting, though anglers are also catching fish on fresh cut shrimp, clam and frozen sandfleas.
When anglers can find baitfish, such as greenies, pilchards or glass minnows adjacent to the beaches, Spanish mackerel are a pretty good bet. Anglers can often spot the mackerel jumping nimbly in and out of the water like small, sleek torpedos. Another good sign of mackerel are feeding terns, who specialize in targeting the same small baitfish as do the mackerel. Expect more mackerel and blues to show up as the fall approaches with the well anticipated mullet run. Bigger fish, including snook, tarpon, king mackerel and even cobia also join in to feast on the plethora of mullet during the annual migration.
When targeting Spanish mackerel, try casting small jigs, small spoons and small plugs that mimic the tiny baitfish the fish are after. Some favorites include Sea Sharks, Gotcha Plugs, Diamond Jigs, Clark Spoons, Crippled Herring and a variety of fly patterns. Even short bodied, heavily headed pompano jigs make great mackerel lures in the surf. Remember, Spanish have wicked, sharp teeth so take care when handeling them, and try using a short piece of wire leader if possible to avoid cut-offs.
A few evening and nighttime anglers looking for bigger quarry are finding some cooperative sharks, including spinners, black tips and occasional bull sharks. Large live baits, such as Spanish mackerel, jack crevalle and blue runners, are ideal for targeting these big fish and anglers will have to have some stout tackle to have any hope of landing these screamers. Remember to take care when releasing these sharks, not only for your own safety, but for the sharks as they can get tired easy and have difficulty reviving themselves as they must be moving to push water over their gill slits - unlike bony fishes which can push water over their gills without moving.
For better table fare, for those of you who like a good shark steak, the smaller, crustacean eating bonnethead is fairly plentiful around coquina rock and other structure during the day, where they will hit sandfleas, shrimp and similar baits.
Remember the heat when taking your family, especially little ones, to the beach during late August. Take plenty of water, sunscreen and some sort of shoes, as the sand heats up to blistering temperatures during the middle of the day. With our mid-Florida high temps and humidity, heatstroke can come on faster than most people realize, especially for the littlest folks, so try to time your beach visits during the cooler parts of the day.
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