Sunday, January 23, 2011

From Capt.Bob- Stuart

Fishing has been picking up in the St. Lucie Inlet lately. We are seeing an increase of
pompano and sheephead on the incoming tide. The water temps have heated up a bit which seems to
push the bluefish out. Back in December with several cold fronts hitting our area the water
temps were upper 50's to mid 60's which is ideal for the bluefish. The only problem is when the
water is this cold, sometimes all you see is bluefish, bluefish and more bluefish. Now with 70
degree water the pompano are moving in. Early incoming I like to start just inside the jetty
rocks and drift about even with the hole in the wall. As the clean, warmer water reaches the
crossroads and heads north up the Indian River, thats where you want to be. By the 3rd hour of
incoming, the south end of the sailfish flats cleans up and with the cleaner water come the
pompano. Late incoming (4th hour to high tide) the Stuart Causeway is a good bet bouncing
pompano jigs.
Outside along the beach the mackerel bite is still on. Just look for the boats south of
the inlet and you are in the zone. Many days the bite starts after 10am. The usual flashy lures
like minnow jigs, Joe's jigging spoons, clark spoons and tube lures work. When the bite is slow
try trollrites tipped with shrimp. You will increase bycatch with bluerunners and snappers along
with some mackerel.
Up the St. Lucie, Hell's Gate area has been hot and cold with some large mackerel over 3
pounds and a few pompano mixed in. The dime bridge is still holding some black drum to 6 pounds
and a few croaker. I have noticed an increase of pinfish around the bridge which I have not seen
in the past.
North of the Jensen Causeway in the Indian River, trout, ladyfish, pompano can be found
in 3-4 feet on the west side along with some flounder on the channel edge. I have heard reports
of redfish north of the powerlines on the east side but have not fished there myself.
Capt. Bob Bushholz

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