Thursday, May 17, 2018
Beach Fishing With Paul Sperco Palm Beach/Martin County Area
I made a quick trip back to Stuart Beach this morning to see if the whiting, croaker, pompano, and blue runners that provided some steady action yesterday were holding in that area. I am pleased to say that the fishing was better today as the croaker and whiting action was non-stop. They bit through the top of the tide and I left them biting as the tide started to fall. Another nice development was the appearance of pods of tarpon - they could be seen rolling and heading South about 100 yards off of the beach. This is definitely the start of some great summer surf action and with the big numbers of croaker that are available, a live lined croaker in the first trough should bring some great snook action. I didn't have a chance to try that today as I was fishing a couple of long rods for pompano. The only pompano I hooked on a long rod was intercepted by a shark after a brief hook-up. I did catch and release a couple of undersized pompano that were taken on the short rod I was fishing for the croaker and whiting. For anyone who has not targeted the whiting and croaker during the summer, the key is pitching the bait, not casting it. All of the bites will happen in the first trough, 10 - 20 yards from the edge of the surf. This is the biggest mistake anglers make during the warm months and you will be amazed at how close to the spot that you are standing that these fish will take a bait. Orange Clam and pink shrimp Fishbites have been the hot baits, along with small pieces of fresh shrimp. Do not put a whole (or even half of a shrimp) on your whiting and croaker rig as your chance of hooking up will be greater using just a small piece. This action should be good up and down Hutchinson Island and the hours around high tide will be the best. Find a beach with a deep first trough and you will continue to catch fish as the tide drops. The near shore trough at Stuart,Tiger Shores, and Santa Lucea have developed again and as I check more beaches I will let you know the best spots to fish. Walton Rocks and Normandy beach accesses have always been great whiting and croaker spots so put them on your list to try.These fish make great table fare and are fun to catch - so get out and bend a rod. My last recommendation is to make sure you have a cooler with ice so these great tasting fish are nice and cold at the end of your trip.