August potentially has the warmest water and provides the best chance to catch a leaping hundred pound class tarpon. These fish migrate north along our coast each summer following the bait pods. Sometimes they can be seen behind the surf crashing into mullet or pogie schools. Other times they will be rolling in the channel edges at the jetties. King mackerel and bonito have now arrived in our coastal waters and will test your tackle with blistering runs in excess of a hundred yards or more. Blacktip and spinner sharks are still following the shrimp boats and can be lots of fun to catch.
Inshore, the ladyfish and bluefish are feasting on shrimp, glass minnows, and baby ribbon fish at the little jetties and near Mill Cove. Just look for the dipping and diving sea birds and fish underneath them. Speckled trout, redfish, and flounder can be caught on live bait or the well-presented lure or fly in the river, ICW, and creeks. There are some bull redfish in the river now ranging in size from fifteen to forty pounds. These are caught in the deep river on heavy tackle. Occasionally, schools of marauding jack crevalle will surface in a feeding frenzy. They are one of our strongest fish and fight with great endurance and are suckers for a top water lure.
When it comes to near shore and inshore fishing in the Jacksonville area, there are lots of options. Take a day off from the heat of land based recreational activities, and try fishing our local salt waters!