Captain Chad Starling
Just when you think winter is gone, here it comes again. It is relentless. This is the first time in my life I am sick of winter and ready for it to get hot.
Fishing offshore has been severely impacted by this very cold winter. I've seen some crazy things this year. From catching whiting, croakers, bluefish, and spots, 10-15 miles off the beach, to catching a sheepshead 25 miles offshore, while fishing with squid, 20ft off the bottom for beeliners!
I believe typical migrations like cobia, kingfish, amberjack, sharks, barracuda, etc. will be pushed back a bit this year because of the cold water.
Bottom fishing inside 20 miles is limited to black bass, red snapper, beeliners, a few grouper, and ring tail porgy. Outside 40 miles bottom fishing is pretty good for beeliners, triggers, red porgy, amberjack, almaco jack, and a few muttons.
Remember, Greater Amberjack opened up March 1st and Grouper opens up May 1. There have also been some wahoo around, some periodic dolphin, and a few blackfin tuna on the troll. There a lot of bait showing up offshore on the sounder which is a sign things are about to speed up, but we need some consistently warm weather to really fire things up.
When it happens, I believe it will happen quick! We will keep you posted.