Mosquito Lagoon and Indian River October
Well what can I say. We have gone back a few months in time to July it seems or even August. What do I mean? It is HOT! Humid and Hot! Record high temps here the past few days are not the usual for this time of year but dealing with them is a must. The weather two weeks ago seemed to be at the time a prelude for the fall/winter approach! Just an awesome feeling in the air. The winter is coming and will be here before we know it. However the fishing the past weeks has been on a pretty steady ride so no worries there at all.
With the fall mullet run beginning fish are chasing more and more bait every day. There is in no doubt not a shortage of mullet on the lagoon systems. They are everywhere. The key seems to be the past several weeks is to be able to locate clear water. Locate clear water, bait fish and other activity and you will find fish! Along with the shifts of wind and air temps the water seems to be playing this game too. One day a place clear will be dirty next. Just use some patience and do the usual - Explore things! Search banks/shorelines - deep to shallow areas and so forth. Like I have always said you do not know if an area will produce unless you try it.
I am locating most of my redfish very early in the morning and then if the clouds hold off and then working with me by mid morning and throughout the afternoon hours the bite stays very steady. Lots of singles. A few very large schools have shown up on my radar as well. with the sun high in the sky and at your back is a major key in sight fishing the Mosquito Lagoon. Use this to your advantage. Search and destroy! Lately most the fish I am getting are in less than 18 inches of water to extremely shallow water. Do not chase them with your trolling motor. Try to poll to them at all cost. They will run and stay well out of casting range from you if they hear any noises from your boat...they are creatures of habit and want to survive! Shallow water is a key with them. Once the fish have been located as always a stealthy approach is needed. After getting into position now it is all up to placement of the bait you use. Remember just take your time and work it well. Get it in front of the fish. Not on top of them. There will be times they just may not eat, so don't get frustrated. As we do not eat 24/7...Correct? It is fishing not catching. It is the process of getting there...the journey. As far as the baits you have many different choices to use. For several days the DOA shrimps were working very well. They still will work well today. I watched a fish eat a shrimp(A live real one!) then a cast was made to another redfish close by and before it seemed the artificial DOA hit the water the redfish sucked that thing down as if it where its last meal ever. So what does this say - well on a few of my trips I have been bringing some mullet along just for back up. The mullet will produce! Free line one out and BAM! However when I am cast netting them for bait the next day(mullet) here at my dock along in the flats I am bringing up numerous shrimp in the net as well. So the redfish are feeding on many baits at this point in time. The shrimp are in the grass flats - bottom line. The past weeks have also landed several redfish with the Rapala Skitter Walk. I prefer the mullet pattern but any pattern of top water will produce as long as it matches the baits in the area you fish. The key with the top water plug in the past weeks is the grass problem or the floating grass. So if you can find areas where the grass is not a big issue then there is nothing like throwing top water and the explosion that redfish or even a trout makes hitting it. I for my personal fishing trips like to throw a top water with a baitcaster...Just better over all control.
The trout bite has been steady as well. Use light soft plastics or top water and it is on. Pig fish seem to be way to big this time of year so if you like using live bait try a free lined mullet in the deeper waters or placing a plastic under a popping cork. Sight fishing for these fish will begin to improve as the weather starts to cool. You can work the edges of the flats94-5 feet of water)for smaller schooling trout or try searching shallow water early for the big ones. November and December should kick off this bite at a steady pace and continue up until next summer again. Of course the water needs to clear tremendously as well. A few more weeks and the water will do this as long with drop in depth. A nice flow of jacks, lady fish and a few black drum along with small tarpon have been mixed in with the days trips as well. It seems the big tarpon are starting to slowly exit the stage here on the lagoon. Reports have been good along the beaches for them from what I hear. Also please always remember to handle all of your catches with extreme care for them to be caught another day. Catch and release is a good thing. Also with the water high be sure you know where you are going and watch out for the grass beds on the flats as well as where other anglers are...We need them.
As always I look forward to seeing you on the water. Tight lines and bent rods!
Captain Drew Cavanaugh
Florida Inshore Fishing Charters
Oak Hill, Florida 32759
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About The Author: Captain Drew Cavanaugh
Company: Florida Inshore Fishing Charters
Area Reporting: Mosquito Lagoon/East Central Florida
Bio: 20 Years plus of inshore fishing experience along Florida\'s east coast. Specializing in back country light tackle flats fishing at its very best. Located just 45 minutes east of Orlando. we supply all licenses and tackle. Call today for the trip of a lifetime...