By Captain David Lifka

Sailfishing has been really hot just a few miles off the beach. A little farther offshore kings, cobia, and dolphin have been providing a decent bite. Closer to shore and in the waterway, blues, trout, drum, sheepshead and reds are there for the taking on the warmer prettier days. Wow! Hard to believe the fishing is this good and it is still only February.

Believe it or not, the fishing really is this good if you are willing to jump in the car and make a drive several hours south on Interstate 95 or Interstate 75. While there is probably no better fishing anywhere else in the United States than Florida, Florida’s quality fishing (just like everywhere else) depends on what the weather happens to be. With the preferred sustained water temperature for many of Florida’s species of fish needing to be in the 60s and above, it only makes sense that the farther south you drive, the better the fishing will get. A not so long drive can be the answer for any of those that might be suffering from fishing withdrawal as we wait on our own area waters to warm with the coming spring.

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At this time of year, we are hopefully just a few weeks away from spring and a new fishing season. Now is the time to be checking tackle, charging batteries, getting the boat serviced, and making final preparations.

Just a few days of warmer temperatures will be all it takes to turn on a largemouth bass. A week of warmer temperatures at the beach may be all that is needed bring on a bluefish bite. A couple weeks of warm weather should definitely bring on a whiting run in the surf, black drum in our area waterways, and the return of a variety of species of saltwater fish to the St. Johns River.

As spring approaches it’s almost time to start fishing again. In the meantime, if you are ready to fish now, a quick drive south could help those fishing withdrawals with some pretty nice catches and a weekend the whole family can enjoy.

Fishing Report: Time to be getting ready for springtime fishing. Bass equipment first, surf equipment second, and get early an appointment for the boat’s new year servicing.

Whether you catch one, some, or none, the family time spent fishing will last a lifetime.


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