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Johns Pass Fishing Report: So Many Fish, So Little Time

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On: Fri, May 8, 2015 at 10:02AM | By: Captain Mark Hubbard

Left-Right- Captain Bryon Holland and Thomas Ward

Inshore- The Flounder are kicking into high gear with their spawn in full swing. They are being found in large numbers across the sandy drop-offs around structure or grass flats. They love to ambush shrimp or small white bait along the bottom. The Trout are biting well on the grass flats inside Johns Pass, reports Captain John Skinner of the Hobie Outback pro team. Dave Green, from Indiana, reported catching some beautiful Snook the other night from the north jetty of Johns Pass on live free-lined pinfish. Don’s Dock reports Sheepshead are still being caught using oysters, but they have become finicky on pieces of shrimp.

Near shore- The Kingfish are still going wild in the near shore waters. We are starting to see more and more Cobia as well as the water warms. The Snapper are getting more aggressive and more densely populated along near shore hard bottom and structure as they approach their summer spawning seasons. Red Grouper are moving in a bit closer with the warming waters, getting more aggressive with the clearer waters. Hogfish are spreading out as the water warms, but were still picking a few up on our trips when using live shrimp or Nekid ball jigs.

Offshore- The Blackfin Tuna and Kingfish are foaming offshore. The weekend 39-hour brought home a dozen or more Blackfin Tuna, and then the mid-week 39-hour brought in nearly ten as well. The weekend 39-hour had over two dozen Kings, and the mid-week had only around ten due to reduced numbers of anglers trolling, not that they slowed down biting. Will McClure reported the Kings were so aggressively feeding that they were circling the boat. The big Mangrove Snapper were biting strong on the mid-week 39-hour in the sixty-mile range but the middle grounds Mangrove bite was a little soft on the weekend 39-hour. We’re catching the larger and more densely populated Grouper and Mangroves inside the grounds right now, and the Jacks are still in the grounds biting well!

Captain Jack’s Dolphin Corner
Dog Leg Key is super active with baby birds right now as nesting season has hit its peak. This is a perfect time to get out and see the baby birds before they grow their juvenile feathers.

The local baby bald eagle has finally learned to fly and can be spotted doing short trips from his high nest and back.

Egmont Key’s beach restoration has been completed and the final pieces of heavy equipment are being removed from the beach before the summer season.

Hubbard’s Marina has also started our 11am dolphin trips; they run on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. These are unique early dolphin watching nature cruise and eco-tours that guarantee dolphin sightings. However, advanced reservations become more important for these trips to ensure they are not cancelled the night before you arrive.

The water clarity is perfect this time of year for snorkeling. The water is also the perfect temperature now, in the high 70s. As the summer progresses the water will get as high as the mid- to high 80s when the clarity will decrease as more algae builds up in the water column.

Hubbard’s Marina is now offering a 9am Shell Key shelling trip from our main location inside Johns Pass. This trip is offered Monday, Wednesday, and Saturdays till noon. It’s an hour ride down to the island in the back bays looking for dolphins, an hour on the island shelling, and a forty-five minute ride back to Johns Pass along the beautiful beaches.

Hubbard’s Marina now offers a 2pm ferry ride on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays in addition to the daily ferry rides at 10 or 11am. The 2pm ferry offers a second snorkeling trip which allows even more guests to enjoy this unique option.

Remember, “If you’re too busy to go fishing, you’re just too busy!”

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