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St. Johns River: Crappie and bass catches are decent along the main river and connected lakes. Shallow water around islands of vegetation and sloughs are fairly productive when baitfish are in the area.

Mosquito Lagoon: Redfish continue to be the target species for most anglers. With cooler temperatures forecast, anglers might want to look for fish along edges of flats.

Port Canaveral: Flounder catches have been good around the mouth of the port, inside the middle turning basin and around the locks. Anglers are finding pompano near the entrance to the Trident Basin as well as the south side of the Jetty Park Pier.

Offshore: When anglers can get out, kingfish catches are good around 8A offshore Port Canaveral. Bottom structures from 80 feet and deeper are producing good catches of red snapper. Anglers aboard the Sea Leveler landed 5 gag grouper, all over 20 pounds, east of Canaveral on Tuesday.

Surf: Despite dirty conditions, anglers are picking up decent catches of pompano south of Port Canaveral and along Cocoa Beach. The beaches adjacent to Sebastian Inlet are also hot spots for the pompano.

Indian and Banana rivers: Blustery conditions are keeping anglers along protected shorelines and residential canals are producing decent catches of redfish, sheepshead and black drum.

Sebastian Inlet: Flounder catches have slowed since last weekend. Black drum are taking live and cut shrimp along the ocean side of the north jetty.

Vero Beach: When winds are not a factor, anglers drifting along the Intracoastal Waterway Channel with live shrimp and small jigs are picking up some pompano, Spanish mackerel and bluefish.

Fort Pierce area: Anglers drifting with jigs, plugs and spoons at the Fort Pierce Inlet are picking up numerous bluefish and jack crevalle along the main channel and in the turning basins.

Surf & Piers Flagler and Volusia County Reports
Daytona Beach New-Journal

Roy Mattson at the Flagler Pier said bad weather forced him to close the pier one day this past week, but the water is still fairly clear despite the rough surf.

"I have not seen a lot of mullet in the surf," Mattson said. "Black drum and whiting are the most typical fish being caught but an occasional redfish is coming up."

Mattson said blues are also being caught but they are starting to run smaller.

Ed Countryman at Ocean's Bait and Tackle said sandfleas still aren't showing up on the beach, but he was paid a visit by Ormond-by-the-Sea angler Larry Carolin and a monster pompano.

Countryman said it weighed more than 6 pounds and measured 24 inches from the nose to the tail fork.

"The thing was about six inches thick," Countryman said. "It was the biggest pompano I've ever seen. It wasn't a permit, it was a pompano."

Tomoka Basin area

Gene Lytwyn at the Fishin' Hole had a customer with a striper catch -- the second striper reportedly caught in the basin this fall. This time Chris Rivera reeled in the stranger in a strange land. The fish, commonly found in the New England surf, was 32 inches long, weighed 9 pounds and hit a live mullet.

Countryman said black drum 16 to 18 inches long are being caught in the basin. Reds can be found tailing around the spoils islands by the Intracoastal Waterway on the northeast side of the basin.

Although water temperatures are starting to cool, Countryman had a report this week of a snook being caught at High Bridge using a big live shrimp.

Matanzas Inlet area

Brian Turnquist at the Devil's Elbow Fish Camp said trout are biting and the flounder bite is starting to pick up.

The catches he has seen lately include four small flounder, a "trashcan full" of sheepshead, and a 17 1/2-inch pompano caught in the inlet. Turnquist said fishing is "doing OK on the (weather) front. We'll see what happens after it moves in this weekend."



J.D. Chunn at the Fishin' Shack said the Heavy Hitter fished Saturday, but that's the only boat that he knows has braved the high seas this week.

When conditions calm, Chunn said bottom fishing should be very good through April.

"In the winter, it can be good anywhere from 10 to 25 miles off

shore," Chunn said. "If you have the ability to get 30 or 50 miles out off the beaten path that should be real good, but even the little boats can hit the inshore numbers and catch a keeper grouper."

For trolling action, "blackfin tuna and wahoo are the most predominant winter bite and there is an occasional small dolphinfish and a few straggler sails with an opportunity at one or two sails a day."

Mosquito Lagoon

Capt. Dave Brown called in from the water. He said the lagoon's water is cooling and clear

ing and he and a passenger had caught 12 or 15 trout by 11:30 a.m. Thursday. They also had one keeper redfish and had seen a few others.

"The reds are scattered and shallow and somewhat tailing," Brown said. "They're in singles and doubles on the flats. The trout are in spotty bottom and deeper sloughs."

Ponce Inlet area

At the jetties, Chunn said folks are getting "a few flounder, a few drum, a few blues. It's been spotty, nothing you need to put your wetsuit on and go down there for."

Lynn Hamp at Brigadoon Fish Camp on Rose Bay said a man recently caught 28 schoolie trout in Mills Creek. "Flounder are really starting to move in. We're staring to catch them in the crab traps, which means they're hungry," Hamp said.

There are red and black drum catches still coming from the inlet backwaters and the jacks are pretty much gone.

Halifax River

Jim Brogno, a 5-year Port Orange resident, is the new proprietor of the Happy Fisherman. Brogno said a lot of small drum and reds and some small snook are being caught. He called the bite consistent but slow.

There have been 5-pound flounder spotted under the Port Orange bridge but flounder reports thin out the farther you get from the inlet.

St. Johns south

James Hillman at Highland Park Fish Camp said they're catching nice specks out on the lake.

"I've seen a bunch of fish over 2 pounds in the last week or so," he said.

Capt. Ron Rawlins put a customer onto a 2.10-pounder that he took to a taxidermist Thursday.

Bass normally will begin a strong pre-bedding feeding frenzy around January and February, but the bite is here-and-there for the time being.

St. Johns central

"They're catching the specks fishing structures and pilings in Lake George," Dave Garner at Bass World Lodge said. "On bass fishing, I don't want to beat it up, but it's not the best in the world right now. It's starting to turn on in the springs.

"They're not bedding, but they're starting to look. The springs are fixin' to get hot and heavy here."

Indian River Lagoon

David Liverman at Doc's Bait & Tackle said, "It's been choppy, cold, rainy, you name it. Anglers are doing all right, but it's just hard to find the fish in this weather.

"Try and stay out of the wind and fish live bait, something that is gonna stink it up and let the fish know where the bait is at and bring the fish to you."

Good Luck to All
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