Inshore Fishing Report
For everyone that has been coming in here for a while, we all know that live bait can be tricky entering the month of July. The shrimp move farther offshore into deeper water and bury in the mud to where the shrimpers aren’t able to catch them. A lot of shrimp that are caught end up being very small and something that we don’t want to stand behind and offer our customers because we want to provide the best quality bait to our customers. We understand the frustration of coming into a bait shop and not being able to get live shrimp, it hurts us as well and we wish to have it in the tanks every single day so we ask for your patience with the shrimp. Other than shrimp, we should continue to have a steady supply of live Croakers throughout the summer and we have been getting steady deliveries of live crabs.
The hot summer days are upon us here in Jensen Beach so it is best to plan your trips around the “cooler” parts of the day in the mornings and evenings if you are planning on fishing inshore. The water heats up in the afternoons and the bite typically slows down as the fish seek deeper water to stay cool. If you are looking to fish in the afternoon, you can still find fish in deeper moving waters such as around the bridges and at the inlets. Our Snook fishing has really heated up here along the Treasure Coast. Here in Stuart, quality sized fish have been caught around the inlet, at the hole in the wall, around the causeways and at Indian Riverside Park to name a few places. We have heard solid Snook reports coming from the Ft. Pierce Inlet, Jupiter Inlet and Juno Pier as well. As a lot of these breeder fish have been caught, it is always important to practice safe catch and release practices and make sure that your fish swims off safely. Live Croakers are definitely a great option to throw for them this time of year. Live Pilchards have also produced steady action for anglers. If you are looking to get some Pilchards, be sure to reach out to Bryan with Stuart Live Bait at 772-985-0425 for bait on the water at Sandsprit Park. For anglers looking to throw artificials, you will have the majority of your success in the mornings before the sun gets up high as well as in the evenings and into the night. Top waters are a great choice to fish on calm mornings. Some other popular artificials include the NLBN 3” and 5” paddle tails, thumper shrimp, Hogy Protail Paddle Tails and Yozuri Crystal Minnows and Fingerlings.
Indian Riverside Park in the mornings has been producing a lot of action for our land based anglers. Snook, Sheepshead, Mangrove Snapper, Sandperch and Barracudas have been making the catch list there. The Snook have been caught on croakers and pilchards, the Sheepshead have been caught on shrimp and crabs and the Mangrove Snapper have been caught on shrimp as well. Jensen Causeway has been providing some action as well, we have heard steady reports of Snook, Mangrove Snapper and Spanish Mackerel.
We have been seeing some Tarpon showing up inshore as well. They have been showing up in the crossroads and in the inlet. Live Mullet or Crabs are some of the best bait options for targeting them. We have also heard about some being caught around the ten cent bridge as well as some up in the North Fork. Tarpon fishing should continue to heat up moving into the summer. If you are looking to tire your arms out, there have been plenty of bruiser jacks cruising the sea walls as well!
Offshore Fishing Report
Offshore fishing has remained steady for anglers heading out of the St. Lucie Inlet. Mahis and Sailfish have consistently been making the catch list with a few Blackfin Tunas in the mix. Live baiting by methods such as kite fishing, bump trolling and drifting have seemed to be the most effective. Some fish have been caught trolling as well. It is always a good idea to look for some sign of life or change in the water before putting your lines in the water. Keep your eyes open for things such as birds, weedlines, debris, color changes and temperature changes as you may find some hungry pelagics in the area. There has been some bait scattered outside of the inlet, but if you want to get to the fishing grounds first, give Bryan with Stuart Live Bait a call, 772-985-0425.
The bottom fishing has been excellent here the past few weeks and continues to improve. Plenty of quality sized Mutton and Mangrove Snappers have been caught. The six and eight mile reefs, the Loran Tower and other reefs and wrecks in the 70-90ft range are good areas to look for them. Live Pilchards on longer leaders or grunt plugs are great bait options for them. Look to see some great night time Snapper fishing coming up with the full moon on July 13th. The July full moon typically provides us with some of the best Snapper fishing of the year. We have also been seeing some steady Yellowtail Snapper action in 60-70ft, it is always a good idea to chum heavy to get them going! The Red Snapper recreational season is opening up for us from July 8th – July 10th. Anglers are permitted one fish per person with no size limit. Remember to have a descending device and a venting tool with you on the boat. For those looking to chicken rig fish, there have been Lane Snapper, Vermillions and Triggerfish to load into the cooler.
Grouper fishing has really picked up for us the past week. Gags, Red, Scamp, Snowy and Black Grouper have all been making their way to the cleaning tables. We had a Gag grouper come into the shop that weighed in at 45lbs that was caught in 80’ on a live Croaker. Live Croakers, Threadfins and Blue Runners are all great options for targeting Grouper. For those deep dropping for Snowy Grouper, deep drop rigs with squid are a great bait choice. They’ve been hanging out in 450’-600’ along with some Tilefish in the mix.
Surf Fishing Report
It has been a bit frustrating for surf anglers on the beaches the past few weeks as there has been a lot of issues with weeds. When conditions have permitted, there has been good action to report. The Whiting and Croaker fishing has been solid, these fish are mainly being caught up in the first trough on pieces of shrimp and bloodworm flavored fishbites. We have also been hearing reports of some sand fleas finally being found on our beaches again. If you are looking to hit the surf, it is a good idea to check out the beach before you set up to see if the conditions are favorable. You can also check the beach webcams at this link https://video-monitoring.com/beachcams/jensen/ to get an idea on what the conditions may look like. There has been some bait moving down the beaches in the mornings and you can expect to find species such as Snook, Tarpon, Jacks, Mackerel, Bluefish and Spanish Mackerel chasing them. The Snook fishing off the beaches has begun to heat up as well. Beaches closer to the inlet such as Bathtub Beach have generated the most reports. The Snook will also be hanging out up in the first trough and will eat Croakers, Small Whiting and Pilchards. If you are looking to throw artificials, the Yozuri Crystal Minnow and white swimbaits are tough to beat.
We hope you all have a great month, catch em’ up!