The middle of August can be one of your most productive fishing periods of the year…if you plan your day correctly. Daytime air temperatures are now averaging around 92 degrees. Water temps are around 88 degees. Plan on getting an early start before the mid-day heat sets in. The daily thunder storms will drive you back to the dock just as the bite drops off in the heat of the day. However, after the storms are over and things cool off a bit, head back out again for some great early evening action.
Snook will bite best on an outgoing tide around the outside islands and cuts. If you can get some live finger mullet, you will be rewarded with some nice big She-Snook! Remember to give them a thorough revival after a quick photo… Since the water is so warm, be patient and expect a good revival to take a little longer than normal.
Redfish will bite best on an incoming tide on the outside oyster bars with live Shrimp, Pilchards, or Thread Herring. Try a popping cork with about 3’ of 30lb leader and an appropriate sized circle hook to match your bait. Many artificials are equally as good and I really like a Gulp natural or new penny Shrimp on a 3/8 oz red jig head.
Tarpon will bite best on an outgoing tide on the outside flats and deep cuts. Ifyou have the opportunity to sight fish for them, try a large soft plastic bait like a DOA mullet. Live baits such as Ladyfish, Thread Herring, and Pilchards are Tarpon candy!
Trout will bite best on an incoming tide on the outside flats in 3’-5’ of water. I really like to use a 3/8oz bucktail type jig with a little flash in its tail. Tip the jig with a small piece of shrimp for awesome results.
Shark will bite on any tide in the near coastal river mouths and the outside flats. Any dead cut bait will work. Try casting out 1/2 of a Ladyfish on an 8/0 circle hook tied to 4′ of 90lb wire leader. Use a medium weight rod and reel with 30 lb test line on it. Plan on chasing the shark with your motor on once he takes the bait or you may get spooled. Drink lots of water while fighting him!
Tight Lines, and remember to make someone giggle today!
Hailing out of Chokoloskee Island Park Marina, Chokoloskee, FL, Capt Rapps has been fishing the Chokoloskee area for just over 20 years. He offers expert guided, light tackle, near shore, and backwater fishing trips in the Everglades National Park, and is happy to accommodate anyone from novice to hardcore seasoned pro. Pete is extremely patient and loves to teach. See his online availability calendar, booking info, videos, and first class web site at www.CaptainRapps.com