The catch is getting better thanks in part to an influx of migrating bait fish through Volusia and Flagler waters.
The area hot spot for fishing is Ponce Inlet, where a variety of fish are being caught by area anglers.
PONCE INLET, HALIFAX RIVER: Capt. Fred Robert (fishing-guy.com) is a man of few words but he reports a major catch of oversized redfish in the inlet area. “A lot of redfish this week and sharks and bonito,” he said. “We caught a lot of small tarpon but never got one to the boat.” Capt. Jeff Patterson (smallboatbigfish.com) said he’s been working the Halifax from Ormond Beach to the inlet all week. “We've been able to sight fish some upper slot and even over slot redfish up against the shorelines in Ormond first thing in the morning,” he said. “Down at the inlet we've also been getting slot and over slot redfish some of them up to the mid 30-inch range. We are still getting some nice mangrove snappers around the docks near the inlet.” With snook season approaching, Patterson had some good news about the line-striped fish. “I got another really nice snook just under 34 inches a couple days ago at the inlet,” he said. Gene Lytwyn at The Fishin' Hole offered reports from the inlet and river areas. “The inlet has seen an increased activity of redfish, tarpon, snook and mangrove snapper,” he said. “Halifax River anglers have also witnessed a few bait schools move through. River anglers are enjoying catches of snook, mangrove snapper, flounder and a few reds. Night fishing is still the most productive.”
TOMOKA BASIN, RIVER: Capt. Barry Englehardt (fishwithcaptainbarry.com) said redfish, snook and trout continue to bite in the river. “Redfish are taking cut mullet while the snook favor live mullet,” he said. Dave Farlow at Salty Dawg Outfitters Highbridge said the snook are thick in this area. “Snook are absolutely everywhere around Highbridge,” he said. “I imagine with this next full moon it's only going to get better. Redfish are still tailing all over the place. Trout are hit and miss but still very much around and we’re seeing quite a few flounder coming back to the docks.” Farlow said tarpon have been thick throughout the basin and fishing around dock lights in this area has produced big results. “The fishing has remained fantastic,” he said.
SURF, PIERS: At last report, Flagler Beach Pier anglers have reeled up a record 94 kingfish this calendar year. The biggest king weighed in at 44½ pounds. Meanwhile, Lytwyn attributes a rise in overall catches to bait fish. “Some early bait movement has spurred activity along the beaches, piers and jetties,” Lytwyn said. “The appearance of some of the first schools of finger mullet and menhaden along our shorelines has breathed new life into both anglers and predators. Surf fishermen have reported an upswing in catches of redfish, tarpon, pompano, sharks and flounder.”
OFFSHORE: Lytwyn said most of the ocean action right now is bottom fishing. “A variety of bottom fish like mangrove snapper, grouper, lane snapper, cobia, triggerfish and black seabass are being caught,” he said. “Those out trolling are reporting pretty much king mackerel and barracudas.”
MOSQ. LAGOON, INDIAN RIVER: Capt. Michael Savedow (edgewaterriverguide.com) has been working the Edgewater Backcountry and was landing trout up to 24-inches long. “We are seeing good numbers,” he said. In his last dispatch Savedow reports additional catches of mangrove snapper, bull whiting, a few black drum and some bigger schooling jack crevalle.
MATANZAS INLET, RIVER: Capt. Chris Herrera (palmcoastfishing.com) sent this email report. “Get out early!” he said. “Not only is the bite great at first light using top water plugs but it is scorching hot by 11 a.m. First light with moving water and plenty of bait in the area is attracting redfish, trout and snook. I start off with top waters and keep going until they quit hitting. Once top water bite slows down, I switch to soft plastics or live shrimp and fish a little deeper where water is cooler.”
ST. JOHNS RIVER: Capt. Bryn Rawlins at Highland Park Fish Camp in DeLand said bass fishing is picking up. "We have seen big strides compared to last year," she said. "We are catching bass both on the main river and Lake Woodruff. Panfishing is strong, however with this heat you must start early in the morning. The first few hours of daylight are most productive."
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