Saturday, May 4, 2024

Snook-Nook Fishing Report

 Our late spring Snook fishing has been heating up for anglers in our area! We are beginning to get into the best time of the year for Snook fishing as they prepare for the summer spawn. Not only do we have a chance to catch a good number of fish, this is the time of year where you tend to see a lot of the bigger breeder Snook caught. When you are targeting or catch the breeder fish, please remember to treat them with care when caught as they will be providing us with our future Snook population. Using circle hooks and reducing their time out of the water are helpful to ensure a strong release of the fish. Snook season remains open until June 1st if you are still looking to harvest a slot. A lot of Snook are starting to move around and are starting to stack up around the bridges as they inch their way closer to the inlet. The Jensen Causeway, Stuart Causeway and 10 cent bridge have produced steady action for those Snook fishing. Fishing live Croakers underneath the concrete blocks or along the fenders will give you a good chance at getting bit. We should begin to see better numbers of Snook in and around the inlet in May. There have already been a few fish showing up in that area as Hole in the Wall has been productive as of late. Anglers will find a lot of success live baiting this time of year with either Croakers, Pilchards, Threadfins or Mullet. If you’re looking for live bait, we have had a steady supply of Croakers available at the shop. Bryan and Mike with Stuart Live Bait have also had a steady supply of Pilchards and Threadfins, give them a call or text the day before your trip to reserve your baits, 772-985-0425. There has been some bait scattered throughout the river over the past few weeks if you’re looking to catch your own bait as well. If you are planning on going out for an evening or night trip, the dock lights have been very productive and there have been a few Trout mixed in with the Snook in certain areas. Live Pilchards, live shrimp, small paddle tails or artificial shrimp will be some of your best bait choices if you’re looking to hit the lights. Those fishing by land have found success at the Jensen Causeway, Indian Riverside Park, wading on the east and west side of the river north of the Jensen Causeway also look for the Snook bite to improve at the Ft. Pierce jetty. With the temperatures heating up, if you are planning on fishing in the afternoon or later in the morning on some of our warmer days, try to fish in areas with either deeper water, flowing current or shaded areas as the Snook will head to these areas as the water heats up. If you are looking to fish artificials, mornings, evenings and at night will be your best bet. 

The Pompano fishing at the Jensen Causeway east side relief bridge has been really good throughout the month of April and has once again been the best month of the year for those targeting Pompano inshore. A lot of the Pompano have been caught directly at your feet up to 10ft away from the bridge so be sure to work your jig through that zone. The best action has been on the second half of the incoming tide and throughout the outgoing tide. You’ll definitely want some current flowing as it really slows down during slack tide. The three hottest jigs have been pink with a chartreuse teaser, chartreuse with a pink teaser and chartreuse/pink with a white teaser. 3/8oz and 1/2oz jigs have been the most popular sizes. Some guys have been picking off a few Pompano on the Thumper Shrimp as well. A few fish have been picked off at the Stuart Causeway east side relief bridge as well as off the Sailfish Flats, but the majority of the action has been coming from the Jensen Causeway. Over the past few years April has provided us with the hottest Pompano bite there and that action has carried over into May so we can hope for the same this year. Along with the Pompano, bycatch has consisted of Spanish Mackerel, Croaker, Jacks and lady fish on the Pompano jigs.  

Our Tarpon fishing has been on the slower side so far. We’ve seen a few picked off in some of the deeper channels, there have been some up around the power plant and some in the 30-40lb class around some of the docks in the St. Lucie River. Last year around this time the Tarpon bite was better around the bridges due to crabs flushing through on outgoing tides, but the crabs have been late this year. We’ve heard reports of crabs starting to trickle through the bridges so hopefully the numbers of crabs increase and the Tarpon bite improves.

Those fishing shrimp around structure have been able to stay busy with Triple Tail, Sheepshead, Snappers, Croakers and a variety of other species. 

Surf Fishing Report 

April provided some steady Pompano action off our local beaches. The majority of the action ranged from 60-100yds off the beach and action has been found both in the mornings and in the afternoon. If you are fishing multiple rods, it is always wise to vary your casting distances to see where the fish are feeding that day. Hot baits have been FishBites EZ Flea, Powerlime, Electric Chicken and Flesh/Pink Crab. Anglers have also found success fishing with sand fleas. We are still hearing about schools of fish caught to the south of us which will have to work their way north so we should expect to see a little more Pompano action before the season is over. 

With the Pompano season winding down, we should expect to see the Whiting and Croaker fishing start to improve by the end of the month. It is very important to not overcast when targeting them as most of the time the best action will be found right in the first trough. Pieces of shrimp, shrimp FishBites or bloodworm FishBites are going to be your best bait options for them. Along with the Whiting and Croakers, we should begin seeing some Snook head out to the beach by the end of the month. You will see a lot of anglers will have a spare rod rigged up with a sabiki rig in case any pilchards push through, they will free line the pilchards for the Snook. If you catch a smaller Whiting or Croaker, you can use that for bait as well.

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