July is here and the snook, redfish and monster trout are biting. We have been catching some very nice fish on artificials. The redfish are averaging 3 to 8 pounds. The snook are averaging about 3 to 10 pounds and the trout are huge - 18 to 24 inchers! We are catching a mixed bag of reds, snook and big trout up on the flats - throwing artificial lures. Some really great summer action.
The big migratory tarpon are still here and we caught 2 nice fish in the 100-110 pound range a couple evenings ago. These large migratory tarpon are nearing the end of their season here. They will disperse throughout the Florida region over the next couple months and in the fall they will school up for their migratory run to the Caribbean and warmer waters for the winter. We still catch the smaller baby tarpon (5 to 35 pounders) all year. The large migratory fish will return in the spring.
The Keys backcountry fishing in the summer and fall offers many species. The most abundant fish in the area are - redfish, snook, trout, snapper, tripletail and sharks to name a few. For those who want to target what we call the "Glamour Species" - Tarpon, bonefish and permit are good this time of year as well. The bonefish and permit will be targeted in the daylight hours. Sight fishing is generally the most productive way to pursue a catch - and one or two fish caught in a day is good. The bonefish here are some of the largest found in the world (8 to 11 pounds is the average size). The permit range from 10-30 pounds on average size. The tarpon are the easiest of these three to catch - especially if you fish in the evening. It is not uncommon to get multiple tarpon in the evening. If you are looking for a trophy - go for the "Glam Species" If you want to catch lots of fish - I suggest trout, snapper, reds and snook.
Great fishing - hope to see you on the water!