Space Coast Fishing Report from Capt. John Kumiski 3/20/08
Tarpon time (May and June) is closing in. Call now to reserve your dates!
Going back to March 10, Maxx and I went out on the Mosquito Lagoon. I poled, he fished, mostly with a fly. He had a few decent shots but every fish fled in terror. The recurring theme throughout this report will be how persnickety the fish have been the past two weeks. He did get one trout of about 18” by blind casting with a weedless jig, using a spin rod. It was the only fish we got.
On March 11 Gordon Gazaway and I went out onto the Mosquito Lagoon. The weather was calm, but mostly overcast. The first spot we went to had good numbers of big trout and some redfish. However, every lure cast their way resulted in a spooked fish. We didn’t get a bite there, and ended up leaving fish to find fish.
We found a good sized school of reds, and a lot of trout lying in white holes in the same area. The reds looked fairly relaxed, lying near the surface, often with their fins out of the water. However, we had the same result- any time the lure landed anywhere near them, they ran the other way. We tried a number of artificials, and none of them worked. I had some mullet, and we broke them out. By chunking Gordon was able to get four reds to 30” and a nice trout. Eventually, though, the school broke up and disappeared. We went to another spot where Gordon tossed a weedless jig, got three bites, and boated one more slot red. By then we were out of time. We had gotten a few fish but it wasn’t easy.
Thursday I went kayak fishing from River Breeze. The water was very low and I had to drag the boat through shallow water and mud for at least a half mile, thinking the entire time that I’d have the place to myself and the fish would be trapped in there. I was surprised and dismayed when I got to “my” spot that there was someone there already! He’s used a Gheenoe to get there. He was standing in pretty much the same place I would have been. I felt a little better that he was a fly caster.
I was disappointed but kept going and found a small school of redfish about a half mile further. They were up on top frolicking, chasing bait, and acting very relaxed. Instead of my fly rod I grabbed a camera and took pictures until the battery died.
At that point three fish swam almost into me and spooked. All the other fish immediately stopped with the relaxed fun stuff and stopped showing themselves. My only conclusion was that they must have communicated amongst themselves that I was there.
I waded back to the kayak, put a new battery in, and realized that picture time was over. I grabbed the rod and went back to the hole where the fish were. I saw a single and laid the fly (a Trout Bite) in front of it, and he immediately obliged. It turned out to be the ugliest, most deformed redfish I have ever seen, not that I was complaining. He was released after I documented his deformity with the camera. I fished those fish for another hour and repeatedly had various flies in them, but did not get another take. Did they communicate again?
I left them and went looking for others but saw very little the rest of the trip.
Saturday Lou Moriello and his son Steven joined me, again in the Mosquito Lagoon. It was sunny but windy. Lou started with a fly rod but switched to spin tackle fairly early on. We found quite a few fish and had lots of shots but did not get a bite. Around noon Lou said to me, “I really want him to catch a fish.” So we went back to the fishiest spot and started chunking mullet.
It was a lot less fishy than it had been in the morning. After catching a half dozen catfish Steven got an 18 inch redfish. Six or so catfish later a freight train hit. I thought the drag on the reel must have been tampered with, but it was just a big, beautiful red of about 36 inches, 16 or 17 pounds, the nicest fish I’ve seen come out of the Mosquito Lagoon in a while. Another batch of catfish, and a 25 inch red fell for the mullet. And that wrapped it up for us.
Sunday Maxx, Sydney Katz, and wife Susan all came out with me on Mosquito Lagoon. Guess what? It was windy. Sydney had never been fishing before so we dispensed with all notions of artificials and went straight to the mullet chunks. We caught a lot of catfish! Finally a seatrout of 20 inches or so got stuck, and Sydney had her first real fish. We were getting hungry (and had a date at JB’s) when we tried a different spot. Sydney got three reds in about 20 minutes. After the third one the mission was definitely accomplished and we ran up to JB’s for some lunch action.
Monday and Tuesday British fly caster Austen Goldsmith joined me on the Mosquito Lagoon. It was still windy, but at least Monday the sun was shining. It was a tough day, not many chances forthcoming. Austen had two bites all day, broke off the first one on the strike, and got a black drum of maybe five pounds on the second.
Tuesday it was blowing hard, and the overcast was solid all day. We started at the south end of the lagoon and worked every bar, hole, and point all the way up to Tiger Shoal. Austen had maybe four shots all day, and only got one bite, which was missed. It was a very tough, disappointing day.
Yesterday Kevin O’Neill and two of his teenage children, Sean and Meg, joined me for a half day on the Mosquito Lagoon. It was blowing 20 gusting to 30. Kevin is a fly fisher, and the kids tossed spinning lures. You know it was tough. We did find a reasonable number of redfish, and actually had a few decent shots. None worked. Kevin got a pinfish on the fly (wish I’d gotten a picture of that) and hooked a ladyfish, and that was it for the morning.
So the wind has been 15 and up consistently for about the past 10 days, the fish have been very fussy, and fishing has been very tough. Most of the fish we have caught have been fooled with bait. Hopefully it will get better soon!