Ok, May is gone, so should be those intrusive little cold fronts, and hopefully the winds will die down soon. Before we know it, we can settle into our typical summer afternoon thunderstorms. At least we know those are coming and can plan a day accordingly, but these winds lately have been absolutely ridiculous, especially if you’re a kayak angler.
As well as the constant wind blowing, we’ve had very little rain here on the Nature Coast. It seems, too, that we went from early spring to dead of summer overnight with air temperatures reaching into the 90’s, and our water temperatures topping out in the low 80s now. And did I mention it’s been crazy windy? (Ok, I know you get my point, I just wanted to be clear!)
Regardless, this is definitely a great time to fish. We have an abundant selection of fish in and near shore to set your hooks into. We’re seeing everything from tarpon, grouper and cobia, to nice mangrove snapper, sheepshead and still a lot of trout. Of course, everyone’s favorites, redfish and snook are coming in droves.
This past month, the bite has been improving greatly, but varying from day to day as to what the fish are eating. Personally, I recommend having both live and artificial baits. If you’re a die hard for one or the other, you could be on an epic bite one day, and not catch a thing the next! I’m a believer in keeping the artificials simple, and use mostly soft plastics. I use the variety of SaltStrongs Slam Shady paddletails, which all come in the same color, but differ in sizes, allowing me to match the size I use to the size of the bait in the area. Also I use the Mirrolure Lil John in either watermelon red or copper glitter. These two lures have proven over and over in the past 2 years to successfully catch a lot of fish. Live shrimp, pinfish, mullet, ladyfish….all are excellent baits for targeting those upper and over slot redfish and snook, tarpon, cobia and grouper.
Moving water is almost critical to locating most species of fish this time of year. Moving water helps oxygenate the water and keep it slightly cooler. Look for mangrove points, rock beds and oyster beds where the current is pushing around them. Seek out sandy bottoms and potholes that won’t hold as much of the sun’s heat. Find those deep troughs, channels and canals where the fish can get into the cooler, lower water levels.
With the lack of rain, we’re still seeing a lot of the crystal clear water, so distance is still a huge factor. Stay as far back as possible. If you think there may be fish in an area that you can cast to before you’re close enough to be able to see them, cast before you get there. Remember, if you can see the fish, the fish can see you!
We’re looking forward to an eventful month of great catches on the Nature Coast. If you’re interested in seeing what this beautiful area has to offer, but aren’t yet ready to conquer it in your own vessel, or just want to make the most of your day with as little effort as possible, we have many fishing guides to choose from in the area. From offshore, to near shore and inshore, back water fishing, airboats, mudboats and kayaks, there’s a guide for you!
I hope you all are able to get out on the water and catch some awesome fish this month! Until next time, Tight Lines & Good Times, Y’all! Catch em up!
Hey y’all! My name is Jacinda. I live in Citrus County, and am a Kayak Fishing guide out of Ozello, Florida.
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I am also a proud Kaku Kayak Krew Member