Posts Tagged ‘snook’

Creek Crawlin’

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

Putting through Alligator Creek...which was indeed loaded with gators

Over the holiday break I had a chance to get back down into the Everglades—the perfect opportunity to let the new outboard on my little skiff stretch its legs. I followed my buddy Joe and his dad in his boat, and we wound our way through tight creeks and fished deep backcountry spots on a warm, breezy day. We caught our share of reds and snook, and the little skiff ran well. In a pending post I’ll detail the recent and long-overdue upgrades, since I know how much anglers enjoy discussing gear. In short, I’m back in the game—just in time for what is some of the best backcountry fishing of the year.

Ditch Fishin’

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

We gave the snook a deserved break this past week, opting to fish some remote canals for bass instead. Joe and I did just fine on bass and snook, and Abby and I fished a residential canal minutes from our home over the weekend and scared up a few fish. No records were set, but we took the first step toward a personal 2010 goal: to catch a peacock bass locally. We also brought PITA the Wonder Dog along for her first boat trip, and she showed angling promise. Sadly, we learned that some of the remote canals we fished will soon be filled in as part of the controversial Everglades Restoration Project. I’m sure these people’s hearts are in the right place, but the canals in question and the surrounding land are brimming with fish and other wildlife, including water birds of every stripe, otters, deer, alligators, and a host of assorted, furry critters. I’m doing my best to educate myself about the specifics of the plan, and I’d appreciate any insight our readers can provide.

Cold weather calamity

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

dead-snook
The photo above, sent to me by an anonymous source, was recently taken at the boat ramp in Flamingo, Florida. In a single frame it confirms what many Florida-based anglers have feared: many snook did not survive the unseasonably bitter series of fronts. There are now scores of reports from around the state confirming what may be the worst fish kill of this generation and possibly the one that came before, with snook the hardest-hit species of them all. I’m planning a trip deep into the Glades next week, and my heart is heavy.

Cold fronts kill thousands of snook in Florida

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

frozen-snook
Reports from around Florida confirm that snook are dying by the thousands due to a series of record-breaking cold fronts. Snook are notoriously intolerant of chilly weather, and prolonged exposure to water temperatures below 60 degrees usually proves lethal. Though snook are the most vulnerable species, water has claimed many other types of fish, including mullet, catfish, tarpon, mojarra, snapper and gag grouper, as well as countless smaller species that are an important forage food for Florida’s game fish, including ladyfish and pinfish. To those of us who catch and release snook and carefully monitor their status, this is a big blow. Alas. There’s a wistful irony in Mother Nature ultimately being the biggest threat to snook populations since commercial fishing for them was banned in the late 1980s. For more info, visit this site.

To report a fish kill, visit FWC here or the Snook Foundation here. Please record pertinent fact such as date, time, GPS coordinates (if possible), number and size of dead or near-dead fish, and conditions observed. If you see someone illegally harvesting dead or dying snook, dial #DEP on a cell phone, or call (877) 2-SAVE-FL (1.877.272.8335).

Fishing Tip: find fish in cold weather

Thursday, December 10th, 2009

dark-bayIn winter months “down south”, cold weather, wind gusts and low tides can make shallow-water angling a real challenge. But, as with most things in life, you can find a silver lining if you look hard enough. In Florida specifically, redfish and especially snook will move inland as the thermometer drops, and they can often be found “sunning” in protected bays, especially those with dark mud bottoms that soak up and hold the sun’s heat. Move into such areas slowly, use a good set of glasses to look for moving or stationary fish and slow down the presentation of your lure or fly.

Going solo

Monday, December 29th, 2008

Had a chance to sneak in a quick solo trip to a favorite bay this morning. A seriously low tide exposed many areas that are normally under water, forcing fish into narrow channels. I found two nice snook, scores of chunky speckled trout and a lone bluefish along channel edges, all of which were released in good shape. By mid-morning it was dead still and hot, and boat traffic had tripled…my cue to head for home. Alas, the quiet little bay I’ve fished for so long now sustains a crush of people at this time of year. Despite the mounting pressure, it still yields healthy fish…and moments of fragile beauty.