Monday, August 31, 2015

"SNOOK" ID part-1

           Your average every day, run-of-the-mill snook has a tapered head and snout, lower  

Sebastian Inlet Report


Winds are blowing out of the South-Southeast at 8 mph, gusting to 9 and there is a moderate chop on the water. All the rain we had over the weekend has created murky conditions. 

Tommy Turowski at the Sebastian Inlet Bait and Tackle Shop reported a fair weekend. Mangrove Snapper, Jacks and Reds were in play. Tommy also said a couple of Mutton Snapper and a Cubera came over the rails as well. This morning not many Snapper are biting but the Redfish bite has turned on, quite a few slot fish are coming over the rails. 

Snook season opens tomorrow! You must have a stamp on your salt water license in order to keep one in the slot of 28" - 32". 


Friday, August 28, 2015

Swimming With the Largest School of Snook Ever Recorded -Juno Beach Pier

From Todd / Eric @ Juno Bait -Juno Beach


From Whites Tackle - Ft Pierce / Stuart

Inshore yesterday there were some reds around to the north around Harbor Branch and just north of north bridge in Ft.Pierce.The trout fishing has been steady around Bear point to Little mud creek. Tyler went fishing after work yesterday to the C-23 spillway where he caught and released a few snook on First light jigs the spillways should be good the next few days  with this storm heading this way.

Sebastian Inlet Report



We have a very still morning at the inlet. The wind is barely moving out of the South-Southeast and there is a light chop on the water. We are experiencing extreme tides with the coming full moon. NOAA is calling for a chance of showers and thunderstorms today and gnarly conditions throughout the weekend due to TS Erika. A lot of buzz is going on in the angling community about the coming disturbance, many think the bite will fire up. Woo-hoo, we're ready!

Yesterday morning there was a steady Mangrove Snapper bite off the north jetty. Some anglers took a while to reach their limit and some never got there but overall, it was a decent morning bite. A lot of shorts were in the mix and returned to the water. Anglers using shrimp, greenies and mojarra on light tackle were having the best luck. The water was very clean and visible schools of Snook, Mangrove Snapper, greenies and mojarra all swimming around the north jetty. 

With the opening of Snook season right around the corner, we have lots of excited anglers looking forward to Tuesday, September 1st. The season will run through December 14th and close again on December 15th. Bag limits are one per person per day and the slot is 28" - 32". Measure the fish from the most forward point of the head with the mouth closed to the furthest tip of the tail with the tail compressed or squeezed while the fish is lying on its side. Minimum and maximum size limits help protect juvenile and older breeding fish within the population. A Snook permit (stamp) as well as a recreational saltwater license is required unless the angler is exempt from the recreational license requirements. You can help researchers by saving your filleted carcasses and dropping them off at a participating bait and tackle store. Go to for more information. 

Our first photo today features Paul Moyer of Indian Trail, NC with a 24" slot Red he landed off the north jetty yesterday morning. Paul baited his hook with the first shrimp of the day and got the attention of this sweet Red. 

Thursday, August 27, 2015

3 Local Tournaments

I Can't Catch a Big Snook. What Am I Doing Wrong?                              

The first thing I would tell you is to kindly ask the anglers next to you what they are doing to catch fish. Most of them will be very helpful. Since you mentioned snook, let me give you a few tips that will help catching some.

  1. Use a Fluorocarbon leader -- it is nearly invisible and snook have great eyesight.
  2. Use a live bait such as a Scaled Sardine or a Pigfish.
  3. Fish during the good tide days around the New and Full Moons, which will be two days before and after those moon phases.
  4. Use the least amount of terminal tackle you can -- So no swivels, no snaps, the least amount of weight you need (split shots work great), and use the smallest hooks you can get away with.
  5. Be very quiet and keep the noise down
  6. Fish early morning and evening or at night. Snook are nocturnal eaters.
  7. Chum with your live bait
  8. Wear a good pair of polarized sunglasses a dark brimmed cap and a buff over your face. It will let you see the snook that are in the water (this is for daytime and we call it the Dark Zone)
  9. Present your bait as natural as possible. So let it move naturally with the tide by feeding line (bail open) to it as it drifts and swims with the the tide. Closed bail and tight line gives the bait an unnatural look. Snook know.
  10. Fish in places that have a good tidal flow and a piece of structure that forms a good eddy or ambush point for the snook.
TIP -- Use the bait in the image, a Scaled Sardine.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Looking Around- Palm Beach / Stuart Area

   Mullet are running the beaches from the Treasure Coast down through Palm Beach County, which has led to some excellent fishing.
   The tarpon fishing was great this week along Jensen Beach, with the early morning being the best time for catching them. There have also been several pompano caught, which is pretty rare for this time of year.
   The snook action has been good (remember that snook season opens on Sept. 1) not only along the beach, but also in the inlets. Mangrove snapper are on fire in the St. Lucie Inlet.
Snook seem to be everywhere in the Indian River, including around bridges, docks, structure and in the flats. Early morning and late evening are best. There are a few flounder around the bridges early in the morning - before sunrise.
   Tarpon, snook, jacks and bluefish are all being snagged on the beaches in Jupiter, and that action will surely improve in the coming weeks. If you're targeting snook this time of year, be sure to use baits that look like mullet. Mangrove snapper are also holding in the Jupiter Inlet.
   Snook are biting in the surf along Palm Beach as well, and are thick in the Intracoastal Waterway throughout Palm Beach County. Working bridges and dock lights at night is the best way to catch them.
   In addition to mullet, sardines are running the beach in southern Palm Beach County, which has turned on the snook, tarpon and jacks. Mangrove snapper and permit ate being caught around the jetty at the Boynton Beach Inlet.
   While snook are being caught around bridges throughout the Intracoastal, sheepshead were also reported from Lake Worth to Delray Beach.

   The bass bite is hot on Lake Okeechobee from first light until about 9 a.m. To catch good numbers, you need to be on the water and ready to cast before sunrise.
   Fish the offshore islands until about two hours after the sun comes up, then switch back to the outside edges.
   Fish up to 5 pounds were reported this week, and live shiners are working better than artificial lures at this time.
report courtesy of Palm Beach Post

Sebastian Inlet Report



Thank goodness for the little bit of breeze we have blowing out of the Southwest this morning, otherwise the heat would be stifling. Seven mph winds with gusts to nine are keeping the inlet anglers a little more comfortable. NOAA is calling for the wind to pick up this afternoon with likely showers and thunderstorms. 

This time of year, Mangrove Snapper are the most prevalent species at the inlet; August and September are peak months for them. The tasty little fish are a lot of fun to catch. Live mojarra, greenies or shrimp on light tackle have been producing the best results. Lookdowns, Jacks, Blue Runners, Reds and C/R Snook are in the water as well but getting them to bite is the trick.

Our angler of the day is Michele Ward of Kissimmee. Michele landed her Sheepshead off the T-Dock using shrimp.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Flare Hawk Fishing for Snook

A popular method for catching Big Snook is the use of 
                                   flare hawks.

When it comes to Snook fishing, the preferred method for catching them depends on the angler you ask. Fishermen like to employ various tactics for catching Snook: soaking cut bait, free-lining live bait, targeting docks, etc. One popular method for catching Snook on Florida’s west coast near Tampa is the use of flare hawks. That’s right, those big buck tail type lures with an eight-inch stream of synthetic hair. Popular on the east coast of Florida, they are notorious for catching Snook—BIG ones. And they are one of my favorite ways to catch over slot.

What are Flare Hawks?

Flare hawks are heavy jig heads wrapped with synthetic hairs. Unlike bucktails, flair hawks have a fuller profile. There is one distinguishing feature that sets them apart from bucktails: they have a long stream of hairs about six to eight and a half inches long, depending on the manufacturer. The hairs in this stream are typically a different color than the surrounding hairs. I don’t know why these lures drive Snook crazy. Some say they resemble shrimp, others say they are akin to Mullet. Whatever they look like, just know that they work. There are several brands of flair hawks: First Light, Gulfstream, Snook Candy, T&A Jigs and Red Tail. They normally go for $2.50 to $3.50 a piece, depending on where or from whom you get them.

Where to Use Them

Where you fish determines whether or not you should use flare hawks. This is not a flats lure, as they are typically too heavy and bulky. They work well on the beaches, in the passes, at bridges, along rocky points, and around piers. Use them anywhere there is deep water and fast current. Although I find better success in deep water (15+ feet), it is not a hard and fast rule. They will also work in shallow areas with dense structure, such as pilings and rocks.

What Gear Should I Use?

Heavy gear. Trust me, you’ll need a long rod to throw big 1.5 oz flair hawks, and a good backbone to wrangle these big mommas out of dense structure. Although you want heavy gear, you will also want something light enough to toss your lure all night without too much fatigue. I use an eight-foot, 15-25 lb Stellar Lite paired with a 5k Shimano Stradic FJ. My Stradic is spooled with 40 lb braid, and I use a two to three foot strand of 60-80 lb mono leader. I initially started out with fluoro, but promptly discovered I did just as well with mono, so I switched. Because you’ll need to nearly lock down your drag and pull the Snook out of structure, the heavy leader will prevent heartbreaks and break-offs. You’ll be fishing at night, so you won’t have to worry about Snook being line shy. If you are beach fishing, go with lighter leader, such as 30 or 40 lb, and lighten your drag so you’ll have more room to play the fish. - 

How Do I Use Flair Hawks?

Use them at night during the strongest tides. I normally begin catching Snook approximately three hours before and after an outgoing tide. The current will be strong, so I recommend a 1.5 oz. flare hawk to reach the bottom, if necessary. If the tide is too slow, switch to a 1 oz jig. There are several methods to work these jigs. I like to simply cast and reel.
I caught six overslot Snook of up to 39 inches on one of my best nights employing this method. Play with the depth. I’ve caught Snook while my jig was falling, while rapidly reeling the lure along the surface, while reeling it mid-depth, and while bumping it on the bottom. I will also occasionally bounce the lure along the bottom with a jerk-pause motion just to switch it up from time to time. My favorite colors are chartreuse with a blue or red tail.
More importantly, have patience. These are big lures and they will catch big fish. It is a game of quality over quantity, so keep in mind that you might have to wait a couple hours before you get a good bite. I’ve had days when I’d toss my lure out for two hours before getting a bite. But once they started biting, it’s game on—and it’s totally worth it.

Good Eats

From Whites Tackle - Ft Pierce / Stuart

Inshore the reds have been around the inlet Ft. Pierce on the out going tide crabs and soft baits in a crab color have produced well.The trout bite has been steady with some little fish around nothing big but fun to catch.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Surgeon's Knot for Fishing - Knot Contest WINNER!

Sebastian Inlet Report


We have some welcomed cloud cover at the inlet this morning but it's still very hot! Winds are moving out of the West at 2 mph with gusts to 5 and there is a light chop on the water. NOAA is calling for a chance of showers and thunderstorms this afternoon. 

Over the weekend the bite remained slow according to Tommy Turowski at the Sebastian Inlet Bait and Tackle Shop. The best bet is still Mangrove Snapper on light tackle. A smattering of Blue Runners and Jacks have been in play. Fishing early morning and late in the day has been more productive, the mid day bite is pretty much non-existent which is common for this time of year.

Our angler of the day is Wes Szuba of Sebastian. Wes landed the Mangrove Snapper off the north jetty using greenies. 

From Whites Tackle - Ft Pierce / Stuart

Inshore the trout bite has been good at first light with a few nice fish on top water around midway road.The snook bite has been good in the inlet and around the bridges with live bait just a few more days till season opens don't wait till the last minuet to get ready come on in and get stocked up on jigs and new line.

Friday, August 21, 2015

School Is In

Jayson Arman
           That's R-man Land Based Fishing Services
Will be doing a seminar this Saturday at 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. We will be meeting at Jensen causeway on the west side of the bridge by the bathrooms I will be there at 7:30 a.m. to greet people and we will be moving the seminar to a different location for more privacy it is $10per person when you show up and every person there will get one on one time with casting and technique a lot of different things will be covered in this two hour seminar...

Sebastian Inlet Report




We have a beautiful, hot day at the inlet. Winds are moving out of the Southwest at 3 mph with occasional gusts to 5 and the water is calm. The outgoing tide is dark with tannins, the incoming is cleaner. The NOAA forecast is calling for 1 - 2' seas over the weekend with only a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms. 
There are a lot of bait fish in the water and lots of fish in the water this morning but nothing is really biting. The early morning hours brought a couple of C/R Snook and a few Mangrove Snapper but after 9:00 the bite fell off. 

Our angler of the day is Loi Nguyen of Sebastian. Loi landed this healthy Mangrove Snapper off the north jetty in the morning using mojarra. 

Our second photo features Tommy Ngo of Melbourne. Tommy and a friend were fishing last Friday morning when they saw a sea turtle tangled in fishing line. The duo netted the turtle, brought it up on the north jetty, freed it from the line and released it. What good stewards of the environment, way to go guys!

From Todd / Eric @ Juno Bait -Juno Beach

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Scouting Around

   Bait fish are showing up in the surf along the Treasure Coast and Palm Beach County, which has led to a greater tarpon and snook presence. The best tarpon bite is during low-light hours or following the afternoon thunderstorms, while the snook seem to be hitting during higher tides.
   In addition to snook and tarpon, there are good numbers of whiting and croaker in the surf along Jensen Beach.
   The tripletail fishing has been incredible in the Indian River, mostly north of the Jensen Causeway. Look for structure, such as channel markers. The bite lasts throughout the day. Flipping shrimp on a jig head has been working well.
Snook are everywhere in the river, too - flats, bridges, structure, etc.
   Plenty of nice trout were caught early in the morning, north of the powerplant.
   The only consistent action along the beaches of Jupiter and Palm Beach this week has been snook.
   Small tarpon are being caught in the Intracoastal Waterway in Jupiter, while snook are being hooked at night around dock lights and bridges. Lane and mangrove snapper are chewing around bridges.
   Snook, tarpon, permit and mangrove snapper were all caught in the Boynton Beach Inlet this week, as well as near bridges in the Intracoastal. Sheepshead are also being reported along the Intracoastal's seawalls throughout central and southern Palm Beach County.

   The best time for bass fishing on Lake Okeechobee is early in the morning. If you're out on the water before sunrise, you can catch a good number of fish before the bite shuts off at about 10 a.m. The fish are out in the main lake early and around the offshore islands. Once the sun is up, you may need to work along the outside edges and back in the grass.
   Live shiners are working better than artificial lures at this time.
   Most of the fish being caught are under 2 pounds, but there have been a few reports of bass weighing over 5 pounds.
report courtesy of Palm Beach Post

From Whites Tackle - Ft Pierce / Stuart

Inshore there has been a few reports of some nice trout around with a few reds mixed in around Big mud to Middle cove soft baits and top water at fish light.The snapper bite has been good around the bridges with a few snook mixed in live shrimp has produced the best.

Sebastian Inlet Report


We have 6 mph winds blowing out of the Southwest this morning, gusting to 8 and there is a light chop on the water. The NOAA forecast is calling for the wind to shift to the Southeast this afternoon with a chance of showers and thunderstorms. 

Tommy Turowski of the Sebastian Inlet Bait and Tackle Shop said the Snapper bite continues at the inlet. Anglers using shrimp and small baitfish on light tackle are having the best luck. Snapper are a lot of fun to catch and are quite tasty. Schools of Blue Runners are swimming around the jetties, along with Jacks, a few Reds and Snook. 

Our angler of the day is Brandon Cintron of Oviedo. Brandon fished the north jetty using shrimp to land this 25" slot Red. Other anglers were trying for Reds using greenies but weren't having any luck. Brandon reported the Snapper bite was consistent all day. 

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

How to Adjust a baitcasting fishing reel/ Cast Farther with less Backlas...

5 Redfish Baits You Can’t Live Without

We are living in a material world and I am a material… angler. Most of us hate to admit it, but we love our fishing “stuff” as much as we like fishing itself. There seems to be no end to the gadgetry and equipment as companies come out with the latest “must haves”. What’s funny is that even though every so often a product comes out that makes you wonder how on Earth you managed before it’s existence, for the most part, we stick to what we’ve always used in some form or another.
This got me thinking about what I would do if I could only have five baits to target Redfish for the rest of my life. While I have boxes upon boxes of baits of every size, color, and weight, I tend to reach for the same ones time and time again. Maybe one day I will need a pink and purple, glow in the dark, vibrating, oscilating, half shrimp, half mullet, floating, diving, plug with a flashing light… but most of the time it’s much simpler than that.
In this article I am going to share my five must have Redfish baits. We’ll save size, color, and rigging options for another article and talk solely about the style of bait and perhaps a suggestion as to what brand I prefer.

1. Spoon
First I have to admit that I have lost my way in the past and excluded the spoon from my tackle inventory. I believe it’s a classic bait that might have lost favor for a time but never went out of style.
I go to the spoon when I need to cover a lot of water without having to worry about snagging grass. This bait is mostly weedless and allows you to fan cast with a fast retrieve. I almost always pick it up when I am not able sight fish due to light conditions or poor water clarity. I also find it useful when I notice the fish refusing other baits. Chances are that you’ve heard of reaction bites, and that is precisely what the spoon triggers. The fish don’t have time to think about eating it. It just passes in front of them and they pounce on it because they are programmed to.
                           matrix shad for redfish
                                  Photo Credit:

2. Jig / Grub

The jig head / grub body combo has to be the deadliest bait in the marsh. In a matter of seconds you can switch between minnow, shrimp, crawfish, and crab imitations without having to retie. An added bonus is that you seldom have a fish come unbuttoned on a jig head. You can fish them deep, shallow, and in between. You can swim them, hop them, and dead stick them. They are cheap, effective, and highly versatile. What more can you ask for? My personal favorites are Strike King Redfish Magic or Lite’m Up jig heads and Saltwater Assassin or Z-Man plastics.


                                                     Photo Credit:

3. Top Water Plugs

I find that a top water plug is one of the best search baits you can find. Like a spoon, you can cover water efficiently, but you don’t have to worry about dragging it into a shell mound or other underwater hazards and breaking off. When you are scouting new waters you can quickly work through a new area and find where the fish congregate allowing you to come back later and really dial in each spot. While you are likely to miss a lot of fish, you will at least get them to tell on themselves so you know where they live. You also get to enjoy the thrill of the blow up when a fish comes up from below and explodes on your bait. My personal favorite is a Rapala Skitter Walk.


4. Spinner Bait

The spinner bait has a lot of the same qualities that make a spoon so effective. It might not be as weedless as the spoon, but it creates a lot of vibration and moves a lot of water making it easy to find when the water is a bit stained. It also has some of the characteristics of the jig / grub combo in that you can easily swap out trailers until you find the right combination. You can slow roll it, burn it, or drop it right in their face. The bottom line is that Redfish love to snack on spinnerbaits.


5. Popping Cork

While I absolutely dread days where I need to pick up the popping cork, it is so effective that I can’t leave it out. Paired with the jig / grub combo of your choice, it can be a real day saver. When you can’t see the fish, it allows you to draw them in while the bait stays right in the strike zone. I definitely prefer to catch Redfish on any of the other baits on this list, but, I absolutely do not go to the marsh without a Bomber Paradise Popper.
I’m sure that if you ask around you’ll find that many anglers will have a list that is a bit different than mine. I fish mostly in Georgia and Louisiana and very seldom in south Florida so naturally my favorite baits will reflect the areas that I fish the most. We would love to hear from you about what your favorite baits are for the areas that you fish. Leave a comment or find us on Facebook and let us know what you never leave home without.

Story courtesy of

From Whites Tackle - Ft Pierce / Stuart

Inshore the trout fishing has been steady around Harbor Branch to Queens cove on soft baits and top water at first light.The snook fishing has been great in the inlet on the out going tide at night with a few tarpon mixed in.Snook season is just around the corner so come on in and stock up on gear do no wait till the last minuet.

Fishing John D.MacArthur Beach State Park

Snook Fishing Juno Beach Pier! Summer 2K15!

Sebastian Inlet Report


It's another lovely summer morning at the Sebastian Inlet. Winds are blowing out of the South-Southeast at 3 mph, gusting to 5 and there is a light to moderate chop on the water. Water temperatures are creeping back up to normal for this time of year. The NOAA forecast is calling for potential scattered showers and thunderstorms this afternoon. 

We have the same cast of characters making appearances at the inlet. Mangrove Snapper have been playing the lead role with Lookdowns with Blue Runners supporting and cameos of C/R Snook and Reds. We are still seeing a lot of bait in the water.

Our photo is courtesy of Alek Turko of Indialantic. Alek fished the inlet and reported a good Snapper bite but the smalls were getting to the bait before the keepers had a chance. There were large schools of Reds and a few Snook popping in the mix. Alek landed this slot Red and slot Snapper. 

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Jayson Arman
           That's R-man Land Based Fishing Services
Will be doing a seminar this Saturday at 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. We will be meeting at Jensen causeway on the west side of the bridge by the bathrooms I will be there at 7:30 a.m. to greet people and we will be moving the seminar to a different location for more privacy it is $10 per person when you show up and every person there will get one on one time with casting and technique a lot of different things will be covered in this two hour seminar...

Two Fun Tournaments

Sebastian Inlet Report



Inlet anglers can expect showers and thunderstorms after 11:00 A.M. Between the rains, conditions will be mostly sunny with a high near 91. Initially winds will be south-southeast becoming east-southeast 10 to 15 mph. The chance of rain is 30%.

Vero Beach's Mike Ricciardi fished the north jetty on Monday and reported a decent mangrove snapper bite in the early morning. However, it fell off when the tide changed from outgoing to incoming about 9:30 A.M. Mike and Diane Buyce of Melbourne both landed their limits of snapper, along with a few other Inlet regulars. 

There's still a lot of bait in the water with big schools of blue runners busting through the packs. Mike said lookdowns were active and one large C/R snook came over the rails while he fished. 

Our picture of the day is from Victor Montolvo of Orlando. Victor landed his limit of mangrove snapper using mojarra. He hooked his entire catch within one hour of arriving at the north jetty. 

Monday, August 17, 2015

Scouting Around - Stuart Area

The beach snook bite in Stuart has been on fire with some monsters caught before day break......


        Looking "Great" for the Happy Bait Snook                                 Tournament
photos courtesy of Chris Beachwalker