Thursday, March 04, 2010

Mosquito Lagoon Fishing Report 3-4-10

Mosquito Lagoon Fishing Report

The weather here in central Florida has been mostly cold and unpredictable but the flats fishing has been consistently good. Redfish and black drum have been abundant with most of the fish being found in schools of 25-200 fish. They have been willing to eat a variety of well placed small soft plastics and flies. Both the reds and drum have been feeding in very shallow water and have been extremely spooky. The fish must be approached slowly and quietly with your casts landing at least ten feet away from them.

On trips during the latter part of February, clients had shots at hundreds of redfish and drum per day. The catching usually depended on the number of accurate casts that were made.
Minnesota residents Jamie and Mike fished Mosquito Lagoon on a cold but sunny day last week. They had shots at schools of redfish throughout the day from 5-30 pounds. A three inch DOA CAL in golden bream color on a 1/8 ounce jighead was the most effective bait and was responsible for at least one double hookup.

The following day, the weather took a turn for the worse due to an approaching cold front. Tim and his son Alex decided to give it a try anyway, hoping to beat the worst of the weather. With solid cloud cover, spotting the fish was the biggest challenge and we ran over many of them before we saw them. Eleven year old Alex did catch his first redfish before we elected to get out of the cold and rain.

Monday was the only day of good weather this week. The redfish were still plentiful and the three inch CAL was eaten on the first cast of the day. I got to try several new crab flies I had tied and found the reds happy to eat them as well.

If the forecast holds true, next week will bring temperatures above 70 every day. If the winds cooperate as well, it should be an excellent week of sight fishing the flats. Small baits like the DOA shrimp and CAL along with crab and shrimp flies will continue to work well.

Upcoming Seminars

March 5 - 5:30pm - Fly Fishing for Redfish -
Tampa Tribune Outdoors Expo

March 6 - 4:30pm - Sight Fihsing the Flats -
Tampa Tribune Outdoors Expo

March 18 -6:00pm - Introduction to Fly Fishing - Mosquito Creek Outdoors
Overcoming the Wind
During the winter and spring months, the wind can be a dominant factor when fishing the flats. Given a choice of clouds or wind, I would choose some wind most of the time because you can still see the fish no matter how windy it gets. The wind rarely affects whether or not the fish feed but it certainly makes boat handling and casting more challenging.

When casting on windy days, there are two important factors to keep in mind. First, any cast made high into the air will me blown off course nearly every time. Shallow water flats fishing usually requites small light baits and even a light breeze will change the course of a high or looping cast. Low sidearm casts will not only travel farther into and across the wind but will fly more straight.

Second, when casting with a cross wind, the cast must be made to the right or left of where you want it to land, depending on wind direction. You must learn to "play the wind" and this only gets better with practice and repetition. Those who can make the casts on windy days will always have a better chance of catching fish. A great time to become comfortable with casting under windy conditions is to spend a few minutes practicing at home on blustery days.

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, the number one reason people do not catch more fish while flats fishing is not making the best cast on their first attempt. Once you begin casting at a fish the clock is ticking. If you can see them, soon they will see you. Once they do, the chance of that fish eating is slim.

Mastering the wind is simply a matter of practice. Like any other task, the more times you do it correctly, the easier it becomes.

Capt. Chris Myers
Central Florida Sight Fishing Charters

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