Coastal Angler Magazine - October / North Central Florida

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NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA/NATURE COAST EDITION

Fall Fishing

FREE

Redfish On The Fly Kings of Fall

Local

Fishing Reports Catch Photos News & Events PHOTO COURTESY OF NOAH MILLER VOLUME 23 • ISSUE 284

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM

F R A N C H I S E

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EDITOR IN CHIEF : Ben Martin • camads@coastalanglermagazine.com COO : Tracy Patterson • tracy@coastalanglermagazine.com ART DIRECTOR : Rebecca Snowden • graphics@coastalanglermagazine.com EDITORIAL COORDINATOR : Nick Carter • editorial@coastalanglermagazine.com WEBMASTER : Nick Barna • webmaster@coastalanglermagazine.comw ADVERTISING INQUIRIES: Corporate Headquarters info@coastalanglermagazine.com • 888-800-9794

FRANCHISE DIRECTORY FLORIDA BIG BEND : Mike McNamara • (850) 510-7919 • captmike@coastalanglermagazine.com BREVARD : Chris Milner • (321) 631-1001 • cmilner@coastalanglermagazine.com DAYTONA/NEW SMYRNA/DELAND : Amy Chibbaro • (386) 478-3812 • achibbaro@coastalanglermagazine.com

Chris Chibbaro • (386) 478-9234 • cchibbaro@coastalanglermagazine.com

FLORIDA KEYS : Cliff Lumpkin • (305) 849-9093 • cliff@coastalanglermagazine.com FORT LAUDERDALE : Gene Dyer • (954) 680-3900 • gene@coastalanglermagazine.com FORT MYERS : Nadeen Welch • (239) 595-8265 • nwelch@coastalanglermagazine.com GREATER ORLANDO : Phillip & Giselle Wolf • (407) 790-9515 • phillip@coastalanglermagazine.com GREATER MIAMI : Gene Dyer • (954) 680-3900 • gene@coastalanglermagazine.com LAKELAND & SUMTER : Mary Brasher • (352) 598-4219 • maryf@coastalanglermagazine.com NAPLES : Nadeen Welch • (239) 595-8265 • nwelch@coastalanglermagazine.com NC FLORIDA/NATURE COAST : Cary & Lynn Crutchfield • (352) 372-4237 • crutch@coastalanglermagazine.com NE FLORIDA : Danny Patrick • (904) 742-4696 • danny@coastalanglermagazine.com PANAMA CITY/DESTIN/FORGOTTEN COAST : Randy Cnota • (229) 834-7880 • randyc@coastalanglermagazine.com PALM BEACH COUNTY : Barbara Ryan • (561) 373-8040 • barbara@coastalanglermagazine.com SARASOTA : Phil Prevoir • (239) 257-4684 • pprevoir@coastalanglermagazine.com TAMPA BAY : Chuck Atkins • (239) 464-5153 • chuck@coastalanglermagazine.com TREASURE COAST : Misti & Gary Guertin • (772) 285-6850 • treasurecoast@coastalanglermagazine.com

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SOUTHEAST ATLANTA : Bob & Brenda Rice • (706) 614-8231 • bobr@theanglermagazine.com CHARLESTON : Sam Buckareff • (843) 607-8629 • sam@coastalanglermagazine.com CHARLOTTE/PIEDMONT : Doug Simmons • (704) 361-6189 • simmons@theanglermagazine.com

Juli Simmons • (980) 333-7273 • simmons@theanglermagazine.com

COLUMBIA/MIDLANDS : John Lux • (803) 807-6885 • jlux@theanglermagazine.com MYRTLE BEACH : Mike Masiero • (732) 674-3019 • mmasiero@coastalanglermagazine.com TIDEWATER/OUTER BANKS : Brenda Riggs • (757) 409-7518 • brenda@coastalanglermagazine.com

Mike Riggs • (757) 681-5001 • mriggs@coastalanglermagazine.com

WESTERN NC : Debra & Joe Woody • (828) 775-9663 • woody@theanglermagazine.com

NORTHEAST BOSTON : George Regan • (617) 488-2842 • boston@coastalanglermagazine.com LONG ISLAND : Lisa & Michael Danforth • (203) 321-7635 • lisad@coastalanglermagazine.com CONNECTICUT/RHODE ISLAND : Lisa & Michael Danforth • (203) 321-7635 lisad@coastalanglermagazine.com

GULF COAST MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST : Adam Nelson • (228) 627-5903 • anelson@coastalanglermagazine.com

Toby Nelson • (228) 623-1761 • tnelson@coastalanglermagazine.com

ALABAMA/PENSACOLA : Paul Caruso • (239) 980-7738 • paul@coastalanglermagazine.com

GREAT LAKES WEST MICHIGAN : Phil Belsito • (616) 957-1714 • phil@theanglermagazine.com

INTERNATIONAL VIRGIN ISLANDS/PUERTO RICO : Ace Bassue • (407) 285-9453 • ace@coastalanglermagazine.com COSTA RICA : Mike Erickson • (561) 262-2242 • mike@coastalanglermagazine.com © 2018. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. Disclaimer: Coastal Angler Magazine / The Angler Magazine will not be held liable for injuries incurred while partaking in activities described herein, or for claims made against products or services provided by advertisers.

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By CAM Staff • Photos courtesy of Larry McGuire, Show Me The Fish Charters

W

ater temperatures are falling. King mackerel are on the move. Wherever they roam, fall is the time to catch kingfish during their annual migration south. In the Atlantic, from the Carolinas south along the Florida coast, kings are following bait to warmer waters. The same thing is going on in the Gulf of Mexico. Kingfish that summered in the northern Gulf are splitting up. Some head west down the Texas coast. Others move east along the Panhandle and down the west coast of Florida. Wherever you fish, the next few months offer the opportunity to connect with the movements of these mercury missiles as they mingle with resident populations. The prospect for drag-burning runs is out there for anglers who pay close attention to water temperatures and stay on the move until they find the fish. King mackerel are as temperature driven as any fish in the sea. When they’re marauding baitfish, they can be found close to shore on the beaches, passes and jetties, where even shore-bound anglers have a shot at them. But most of the larger kingfish hunt over nearshore reefs in 30- to 60-feet or deeper. Deep or shallow, they’ll seek out 68- to 73-degree temperatures where they are comfortable. Watch the water temperature charts, and fish by them. Find the right temperature and an abundance of baitfish, and putting out a spread of baits will tell you quickly if there are kingfish around. Live bait is always the best bet, especially for big smokers. The best bait will depend on where you fish and what baitfish are most prevalent. Pogies (menhaden), hardtails (blue runners), pilchards and threadfin herring are all good baits if they are present. The fall mullet runs offer an abundance of good bait. A lot of tournament and charter boats put a Spanish mackerel in a spread looking for a big bite. Most importantly, baitfish should be fresh. Catch the bait that is available with Sabikis or cast nets, keep it well-oxygenated and switch them frequently. Most kingfish rigs will use a mainline of 20- to 30-pound monofilament. Obviously, with those teeth, a wire leader is essential. You should go as heavy as the fish will let you get away with—depending on water clarity—but it must remain light enough for the bait to swim. A 24-inch, single-strand wire leader of 40-pound test is a starting point. Go lighter in clear water or with smaller baits; go heavier in dirty water or if you’re fishing big baits for big fish. Leaders can be made longer for security. Hooks should be matched to the size of the bait, and it’s wise to add a stinger hook on large baits. Whether anchored, drifting or slow-trolling, a fresh chum slick is a good idea. If a king doesn’t hit within 15 or 20 minutes, pick up and go find some that are biting. They shouldn’t be hard to find this time of year.

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By Greg Hatten etails are important when fly fishing for steelhead and running a wood boat through the rocky rivers of the Pacific Northwest. It’s the details I obsess about – the knots, the leaders, the water temperature, the boulders that might hold fish or punch a hole in a wood boat. I am “Obsessed by Details” or OBD. Every piece of gear I carry must pass the OBD test. When I put sunglasses under my microscope, Popticals are my choice. It’s the only brand that provides superior visual performance and a portable design that can be easily packed anywhere to protect the lenses. Eyewear must cut through the glare and provide clarity to see tiny details like the color of insects hatching, the subtle rise of trout, or the faint underwater shadow of a holding steelhead. Popticals offer a level of detail head and shoulders above other glasses. When I row, eyewear must give me clarity to see “the safe line” through rocky sections of river as well as in the distance when I am judging obstacles downriver. Popticals are the sunglasses I trust with my boat on the line. My sunglasses must also provide superior protection from sharp hooks flying through the air. The Popticals I wear have a great side guard that provides outstanding protection. Popticals are the perfect combination of performance and protection with the bonus feature of folding down so small they fit in the palm of my hand. Greg Hatten is a professional fly fishing guide and wood boat builder. Check out Popticals at popticals.com.

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FLORIDA

By Cory Gurman

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t doesn’t get much better than watching the sun peak above the horizon with a rod in hand while schools of redfish crash baitfish all around you. Many areas redfish frequent are in skinny water, and targeting them from a kayak allows access as well as an up close and personal adventure. Kayaks have come a long way since their inception. Thousands of years ago, natives of North America’s arctic built the first kayaks of whale bones and animal skins. They used them for hunting. Today’s plastics and a wave of interest in kayak fishing over

the last decade sparked advancements in kayaks manufactured specifically for fishing. Improvements in space, stability, comfort and maneuverability are just a few of the reasons these vessels are so attractive to anglers. Add to that some of the many options available, such as peddle assist, power poles for anchoring, bait wells and super comfortable seating with lumbar support, and you have a five-star fishing platform that provides access to very skinny water. When fishing from a kayak, lightweight gear is a fun and effective way to target redfish. Light gear offers a challenge when hooked up to 5-plus-pound fish, and it also gives an advantage when casting to distant fish, especially if using braided line. Redfish in skinny water can be caught using jig heads, shrimp under a popping cork, D.O.A. Shrimp and even topwater and suspending baits. This time of year, the mullet really start getting fired up as they start migrating. As redfish actively pursue their prey, casting a topwater plug early in the morning is a really exciting way to draw a strike. Leader material is important in this type of fishing since oyster beds will fray line. Check and replace the leader as needed so the big one never gets away. Kayak fishing has really offered up a unique and exciting way to explore many different types of water. There are many makes and models to suit your fishing style, and taking a kayak out on the water is the best way to see for yourself. Visit a local dealer and get ready to expand your horizons beyond traditional fishing crafts. It’s a different view with exciting promises! Cory Gurman is a student at Ponte Vedra High School in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. Besides reveling in the great outdoors, Cory enjoys spending time with his three golden retrievers and rooting for the Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Instagram @fishhunter1119.

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E

Sheri Daye

verything we do in life carries risks, even going for a drive. Wear your seatbelt, learn to be a defensive driver, and life goes on. Spearfishing has risks too, but they are manageable. A lot of people ask, “What about sharks?” I tell them, “Sharks are like dogs. The vast majority are not a threat. In fact, it’s a privilege to see them in the water. You should enjoy the sight!” Unlike the Jaws movie era, most people now understand that sharks are not mindless monsters. They are beautiful creatures, and there’s many sightseeing opportunities for tourists and photographers. On the other hand, when you are spearfishing, you don’t want to be too cavalier and shoot fish in front of sharks. They are wild animals and should be respected. One should not spear in areas where shark feeding takes place or areas known to be “sharky.” Fortunately, sharks don’t appear out of nowhere and start munching on your leg; that is not their nature. However, it is their nature to be attracted to wounded fish. The vibration attracts them even more than the blood. This is one of several reasons to strive for the killshot on your prey. If you do not achieve that, it is wise to dispatch and place your fish on the boat as quickly as possible. It’s also best to keep moving along. Don’t stay in one spot, especially in the Bahamas. Assuming you’ve done everything possible to avoid an encounter, the next most important step is to dive with a buddy, stay aware, cover each other, and don’t stray too far from the boat. Bad situations tend to escalate gradually. If one diver maintains a watch while the other is dealing with their fish, you are less likely to have a surprise encounter. A good buddy will alert you, call the boat over, and make sure the fish is landed without incident. Sharks tend to make several passes before zeroing in on the target, so there should be plenty of time to land the fish before things escalate. When a shark does show Manny Puig in the water with a big up, it’s important to not show mako shark. Photo by Robin Berg. fear or run away from them. Like dogs, they sense fear and will be more interested if you freak out. Stand your ground, face them, assume an aggressive posture and calmly exit the water. Here’s a summary: 1. When spearing, avoid shark encounters as much as possible. 2. Try to get killshots or dispatch the fish quickly and put it on the boat. Don’t carry a stringer. 3. Move from spot to spot, even if you haven’t seen a shark. 4. Dive as a buddy team and look out for each other after shooting fish. 5. Keep the boat nearby so you can quickly unload fish and/ or exit the water. 6. Do not give up the fish to a shark. That tends to escalate the situation. 7. Do not panic or run from a shark, face them with confidence, but exit when possible. Happy hunting and see you in the water!

TH

Wit ben

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Sheri is a world-record holder, host of Speargun Hunter, and producer of “The Blue Wild Ocean Adventure Expo” in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Follow “Sheri Daye” and “The Blue Wild” on Facebook and Instagram.

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OCTOBER 2018

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9/17/18 12:07 PM


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OCTOBER 2018

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W

KEVIN MCCARTHY

hen the Tampa Bay area acquired a major-league baseball team for St. Petersburg in 1995 and before the team began playing in the American League in 1998, owners opened up the naming process to the public. Some of the responses were “Aces,” “Bandits,” “Cannons,” “Stripes,” and “The Nine,” but officials chose The Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Some people objected to the “Devil” part of the name and others surmised that, because the Devil Ray fish likes the bottom of the sea, the team lived down to its name when it languished at the bottom of the rankings. Around 2007, the team owner changed the name from “Devil Rays” to simply “Rays,” emphasizing, not the fish, but the sunshine rays that the area is known for. In fact, for 76 years, the local newspaper, “The Evening Independent,” was given away free on any day that the sun did not shine in St. Petersburg. It happened only 296 times in those 76 years. In 2018, the team announced that, to honor its twentieth year in the big leagues, they would occasionally wear their old uniforms that sported the devil ray image swooping across the front of the uniform and use the name “Tampa Bay Devil Rays.” The fishy devil rays get their name from the appearance of their curled fins, which sometimes point down and look like devil horns sticking out from the fish’s head. The fish have been here a long time: 20 - 25 million years. They’ve also developed the ability to dive to depths of over a mile and stay there for over an hour, as well as to swim faster than 10 miles an hour, making them some of the fastest, deepest divers in the ocean. Despite their menacing name, the fish are actually pretty harmless and shy. They feed on plankton and small fish. The female giant devil ray will actually be pregnant for over two years, at the end of which time she will hatch her eggs inside her body and then give birth to

only one young pup. If you’ve ever seen a devil ray leap high into the air, do twists and even belly flops, you will not soon forget it. They probably do this to communicate with each other, flee from predators, or remove annoying parasites. Devil rays, the fish, not the ballplayers, are on the endangered list and are under threat from boat traffic, pollution, habitat decline and fishing. They are often caught as bycatch or from entanglement in nets, but fishermen seldom target the species. So, if you catch a baseball game with the Rays or see the fish jumping in the ocean, think of the gorgeous fish pictured here. Kevin McCarthy, the award-winning author of “South Florida Waterways” (2013 - available at amazon.com for $7), can be reached at ceyhankevin@gmail.com.

For more from Kevin McCarthy, go to

GOBOATBOUND.COM

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9/17/18 11:09 AM


By CAM Staff

T

wo fishing buddies from Pocatello, Idaho recently broke the catch-and-release state record for kokanee salmon twice in three weeks. For those unfamiliar with kokanee, it is the freshwater form of the well-known sockeye salmon of the northern Pacific. Sockeye, the salmon you find at the grocery store, are anadromous. They run out of the ocean and into rivers to spawn each fall. Kokanee also make a fall spawning run up creeks and rivers, but their lives are spent entirely in freshwater. It is thought the two species diverged thousands of years ago when

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ice melt created a system of large freshwater lakes and rivers across northern North America. While the sockeye continued their anadromous lives, kokanee did not to return to the sea. In some regions the two species still interbreed, while in others kokanee have become entirely landlocked. Kokanee exist in lakes and rivers across the northern United States and Canada. They have even been transplanted into systems as far south as North Carolina. According to the Idaho State Journal, Cody Spencer and Rob Mackesey got onto a good bite as kokanee ran out of Palisades Reservoir and up Elk Creek to spawn in August. Palisades is a 16,000-acre impoundment of the Snake River that sits hard on the Wyoming border near Yellowstone National Park. Elk Creek feeds the northern end of the reservoir just upstream of the dam. Spencer and Mackesey told the Idaho State Journal they are relatively new to kokanee, but they were actually fishing for the record after they learned the existing catch-and-release record measured just 18.5 inches. For reference, the IGFA world record kokanee measured 27.75 inches and weighed 9 pounds, 10 ounces. Ronald Campbell caught the world record from Wallowa Lake, Ore. in 2010. On Aug. 19, both Spencer and Mackesey caught fish longer than the 2-year-old catch-and-release state record. Mackesey landed a 20.08-incher, and on the same day Spencer caught the 20.9-inch record setter. But the story doesn’t end there. On Sept. 8, Spencer went back and bested his buddy with a 21.5-inch male that was dressed in its full spawning regalia. Part of the allure of kokanee is their unusual appearance. For most of the year, they are silver-sided and resemble a rainbow trout. During the spawn, the bodies of the males turn bright red and they develop a hump on their backs. The catch-and-release state record is a relatively new program for Idaho that encourages the release of fish by allowing anglers to apply for the record by photographing their catch next to a measuring device. The official certified Idaho state record for kokanee is a 6.59-pounder that measured 24.5 inches. Jerry Verge caught it from northwest Idaho’s Priest Lake in 1975.

9/17/18 10:54 AM


Photo Courtesy of Silver Sailfish Derby

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OAA Fisheries recently denied an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) that would have allowed pelagic longline (PLL) vessels into the East Florida Coast Pelagic Longline Closed Area. “Angler conservationists can breathe a sigh of relief that the longline EFP application is no longer a threat to the conservation gains in the E. Florida Closed Zone,” said Jeff Angers, president of the Center for Sportfishing Policy. “We will remain vigilant in protecting both this conservation zone we fought so hard for two decades ago as well as this amazing catch-and-release sailfish fishery that has grown off the east coast of Florida.”

On March 6, 2018, leading recreational fishing and boating organizations submitted public comment to the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council in opposition to the EFP. More than two decades ago, swordfish in the Western Atlantic were in serious trouble due to overfishing. The public responded forcefully to the plight of swordfish, and as a result, nursery areas were identified and closed to the United States PLL fleet in 2001. Today, anglers point to the recovery with pride as a significant conservation victory. “We greatly appreciate NOAA’s decision to keep the conservation zone off-limits to this destructive gear,” said Patrick Murray, president of Coastal Conservation Association. “Clearly the voices of recreational anglers and marine conservationists were heard. This is a great victory.” An unintended benefit of the East Florida Coast PLL Closed Area has been the establishment in the region of the nation’s best sailfish fishery. The direct economic benefit to coastal recreational fishing-related businesses and coastal economies has been remarkable. “Saltwater recreational fishing along the East Coast of Florida supports 35,523 jobs and has a sales impact of over $4 billion annually,” said Glenn Hughes, president of the American Sportfishing Association. “Much of this economic activity is attributed to the tremendous sailfish fishery that has been supported in large part by the East Florida Coast Pelagic Longline Closed Area. The recreational fishing industry is relieved by NOAA’s announcement to not put this conservation success at risk by allowing longlining back into the area.” Ever since the fishery was deemed recovered, there have been attempts to reopen the closed areas to commercial harvest and expose it to the types of intense commercial fishing pressure that drove it into an overfished condition. The permit denied by NOAA Fisheries would have authorized PLL vessels to make thousands of sets in the conservation zone for up to three years and sell all the legal fish caught.

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COASTAL ANGLER North Central Florida/Nature Coast

Cary & Lynn Crutchfield ALACHUA, MARION, COLUMBIA, GILCHRIST, BRADFORD, DIXIE, LEVY, CITRUS

O

OCTOBER

ctober 2017, I began my monthly letter to you, telling you that I was heartbroken because of the hurricane destruction in Florida, Texas and of course Puerto Rico, (and now we know that almost 3000 Puerto Ricans died as the result of Hurricane Maria). Tonight, I am heartbroken again, because of the killer storm in North and South Carolina. The death toll is already in the double digits. Even though our home on the Suwannee is built on stilts, if a rain maker such as Hurricane Florence hit the Okefenokee Swamp in South Georgia, our home, and every other home on the Suwannee, would be totally submerged; a very sobering thought. I love my river in my front yard, but not in my house. Our antique Buick club has a tour planned for the first week of November in New Bern, NC, and the surrounding area. New Bern suffered serious flooding, but if they are ready for visitors in November, we will be there. They will need the tourist dollars. October--lower temps and lower humidity--my favorite month of the year! I love the Confederate Rose trees that bloom in the fall. I have several trees in my yard and I have seen them as far north as Southern Virginia. See pink and white flowers on this page. Thank you to John Freeze (writes CENTRAL FLORIDA INLAND) for this beautiful photo of a sunset, on a secluded lake in the Ocala National Forest. See page 10 for Rosa’s cleaning service, Top Notch Quality Services. Rosa helps us deliver the magazines to our distribution sites. This month’s recipe, Shrimp with Cauliflower/Potato Mash, on page 9, is super easy and super delicious. Cary really likes the mashed potato/cauliflower side. This one is in the category of “You can make this again.”. As always, please thank our advertisers for making this FREE magazine possible. (You would not believe my print bill!) Also, thank the folks at the location where you picked up this magazine. My guides are telling me that fishing is good, so get out there and catch something.

Lynn Crutchfield Co-Publisher Coastal Angler Magazine of North Central Florida /Nature Coast

OCTOBER 2018 EDITION

Find Your Outdoors Here! North Central Florida Nature Coast Staff SALES

Cary Crutchfield

EDITING & PRODUCTION Lynn Crutchfield

DISTRIBUTION Rosa Crisman

GRAPHIC ARTS & DESIGN Kathleen Stemley

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Dr. Kevin McCarthy Bruce Butler John Freeze Noel Kuhn Capt. Jason Clark Capt. Dan Clymer Capt. Tommy Derringer Capt. Stacy Horak Capt. Jimbo Keith Capt. Pat McGriff Capt. Clay Shidler Capt. Brian Smith Capt. Dan Smith Capt. Craig Spitznogle

CONTACT INFORMATION

crutch@coastalanglermagazine.com 352-372-4237 www.CoastalAnglerMag.com/NC-Florida

INSIDE THIS ISSUE Tide Charts Local Fishing Forecasts Monthly Recipe

Photo by: Suwannee River Water Management District

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Presents the

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4:00 pm – Weigh in at Plantation Inn 9301 W. Fort Island Trail Crystal River, FL

Queries 352.207.3925

TIDES • North Central Florida Time Height

1M

2Tu

3W

4Th

5F 6Sa

7Su

8M

12:08 AM 5:49 AM 1:18 PM 8:01 PM 1:08 AM 6:52 AM 2:38 PM 9:35 PM 2:32 AM 8:20 AM 4:05 PM 10:58 PM 4:05 AM 9:56 AM 5:20 PM 11:57 PM 5:23 AM 11:17 AM 6:19 PM 12:40 AM 6:24 AM 12:22 PM 7:07 PM 1:15 AM 7:15 AM 1:17 PM 7:49 PM 1:48 AM 8:00 AM 2:06 PM 8:27 PM

1.7 3.9 0.4 2.9 1.9 3.7 0.5 2.9 2.0 3.6 0.5 3.0 1.9 3.6 0.3 3.2 1.6 3.8 0.2 3.5 1.1 4.0 0.1 3.7 0.7 4.2 0.2 3.8 0.3 4.2 0.4

HERNANDO BEACH

OCTOBER 2018

9Tu

Time Height

2:18 AM 8:42 AM 2:52 PM 9:03 PM 10W 2:48 AM 9:23 AM 3:36 PM 9:36 PM 11Th 3:18 AM 10:02 AM 4:19 PM 10:09 PM 12F 3:48 AM 10:41 AM 5:02 PM 10:42 PM 13Sa 4:19 AM 11:21 AM 5:47 PM 11:17 PM 14Su 4:54 AM 12:04 PM 6:39 PM 11:56 PM 15M 5:34 AM 12:54 PM 7:42 PM 16Tu 12:47 AM 6:27 AM 1:57 PM 8:58 PM

3.9 0.0 4.1 0.6 4.0 -0.1 4.0 0.8 4.0 -0.1 3.7 1.1 4.0 -0.1 3.5 1.3 3.9 0.1 3.2 1.5 3.8 0.3 3.0 1.7 3.6 0.6 2.8 1.9 3.4 0.8 2.7

KINGS BAY

High Tide -20 min Low Tide 58 min

High Tide 2 hrs, 20 min Low Tide 3 hrs, 7 min

CRYSTAL RIVER

WITHLACOOCHEE ENT

High Tide 36 min Low Tide 1 hr, 30 min

High Tide 7 min Low Tide 55 min

CEDAR KEY

Time Height

17W

18Th

19F

20Sa 21Su

22M

23Tu

24W

1:57 AM 7:42 AM 3:14 PM 10:13 PM 3:23 AM 9:12 AM 4:30 PM 11:11 PM 4:42 AM 10:34 AM 5:30 PM 11:53 PM 5:44 AM 11:38 AM 6:16 PM 12:28 AM 6:32 AM 12:30 PM 6:54 PM 12:59 AM 7:14 AM 1:16 PM 7:30 PM 1:27 AM 7:52 AM 1:59 PM 8:04 PM 1:54 AM 8:29 AM 2:40 PM 8:38 PM

Time Height

25Th 2:21 AM 9:07 AM 3:22 PM 9:12 PM 26F 2:50 AM 9:46 AM 4:05 PM 9:48 PM 27Sa 3:22 AM 10:27 AM 4:52 PM 10:26 PM 28Su 3:58 AM 11:12 AM 5:43 PM 11:08 PM 29M 4:39 AM 12:04 PM 6:44 PM 11:59 PM 30Tu 5:31 AM 1:05 PM 7:56 PM 31W 1:04 AM 6:39 AM 2:18 PM 9:14 PM

4.0 -0.2 3.7 1.0 4.0 -0.3 3.6 1.2 4.1 -0.4 3.4 1.4 4.1 -0.3 3.2 1.6 4.0 -0.1 3.0 1.7 3.8 0.1 2.9 1.8 3.5 0.3 2.9

HOMOSASSA RIVER ENT

HORSESHOE BEACH

SUWANNEE ENT

STEINHATCHEE RIVER ENT

High Tide 4 hr, 30 min Low Tide 5 hr, 41 min High Tide 6 min Low Tide 18 min

2 NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA/NATURE COAST

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2.0 3.2 0.9 2.8 1.9 3.1 0.9 3.0 1.6 3.2 0.8 3.2 1.3 3.4 0.7 3.4 0.9 3.6 0.6 3.6 0.5 3.7 0.7 3.7 0.2 3.8 0.7 3.9 0.0 3.8 0.9

High Tide 12 min Low Tide 20 min

High Tide 2 min Low Tide 0 min

OCTOBER 2018

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

9/16/18 5:34 PM


FLORIDA WATERWAYS

Fish Fossils

A

mericans like to celebrate obscure holidays, whether month-long holidays like Cookie Month or Eat Country Ham Month (both in October) or week-long holidays like Fire Prevention Week or Pet Peeve Week (also both in By Kevin McCarthy October), but some holidays have only one day a year. For example, National Fossil Day, which is celebrated on the Wednesday of Earth Sciences Week, October 14-20, 2018. National Fossil Day then is October 17. The day is not meant to honor us old fossils, but instead to learn more about fossils in nature and preserve them. Our National Park Service, which established the day in 2010, wants the public to engage in some of the many public celebrations about the country that help preserve fossils and give us a better understanding of them. The first photo here shows a 3.7-millionyear-old shell fossil from near Sarasota, reminding us that Florida was under water for much of its history. I keep a fish fossil over my desk, a fossil of a 50-million-year-old freshwater herring that I bought in New Mexico a year or so ago. The fact that we can see its eye and ribs and fins is amazing. Florida also has a very rich collection of Pleistocene fossils, dating back between 11,700 years and 2.5 million years, at a time when much of our hemisphere was experiencing an ice age. Divers in Florida’s freshwater rivers have found bones of mastodons and mammoths, for example, in the Aucilla River in our Panhandle. The river has some forty underwater archaeological sites, where scientists from the Center for the Study of First Americans have found many artifacts, including ivory. Another project, the Aucilla River Prehistory Project, has examined the river, especially, in light of the fact, that the

river has been subject to the rise and fall of sea level in its long history. I’ve also collected from diver friends, lots of sharks’ teeth, including one from the extinct snaggle-toothed shark, pictured here. Other friends have found armor plates from an extinct giant armadillo in a limerock mine, as well as a 20-million-yearold upper tooth from an extinct miniature three-toed horse, in a Hamilton County phosphate mine. The Megalodon tooth pictured here from North Carolina was over five inches long and four inches wide. The Florida Museum of Natural History in Gainesville, and the Mulberry Phosphate Museum in Mulberry, are particularly impressive and display a wide assortment of fossils dating back thousands of years. Phosphate mines in Florida have been a rich source of fossils. Once the mining companies moved on, archaeologists and paleontologists (scientists who study fossils) have been known to descend into the mines to find amazing artifacts. I’m sure that many youngsters have gone into those fields of studies, after discovering fish fossils, including sharks’ teeth, in our streams and rivers. Kevin McCarthy, the author of “North Florida Waterways” 2013 (available at amazon. com), can be reached at ceyhankevin@gmail. com.

Snaggletooth shark COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM OCTOBER 2018

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A 3.7-million-year-old she ll fossil from near Sarasota

A fish fossil that is

50 million years old

The Aucilla River in the

Panhandle

Mastodons used to roam across Florida.

Megalodon tooth NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA/NATURE COAST 3

9/16/18 5:34 PM


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CRYSTAL RIVER

SEAFOOD AT ITS BEST! $1 OFF Fresh Clam Strips Basket or Appetizer 50¢ OFF Cup of New England Clam Chowder $1 OFF Bowl of New England Clam Chowder EAT IN • TAKE OUT Closed 7364 W. Grover Cleveland 2315 N. Sunshine Path Homosassa, FL 34446 Sunday and Crystal River, FL 34429

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T

he cool mornings of October are a change that is welcomed by most anglers who have spent the last three months in the sweltering heat of summer. The key to success as the season changes, is being able to track the fish from one seasonal hot spot to the next. As water temps begin to drop, nearly all of our favorite target species will move to different areas, or start keying-in on different baits. Being able to track your favorite species will be the key to success as we get deeper into the fall season. The trout will begin to move in from the deeper flats, and start staging around the inshore bays and creek mouths. Unfair Lures Smack Sticks in root beer, are a great option to fish under a popping cork. I prefer about a 25-inch leader between my cork and jig head, and this setup will fish effectively in 3 to 6 feet of water. Look for areas with mixed sand and grass. Fish any transitions from sand to grass, or grass to rock, and that’s where you will find the trout laid up. Of course, live shrimp or pinfish are always solid options for trout in the fall. As the water begins to cool, Grouper and cobia will begin to show up in 20 to 40 feet of water. Look for

water temps around the 70-degree mark, to start trolling the diving plugs for the gags. Any live bottom or rocky areas will hold gags, and the cobia can come at any time, as they are on their annual migration south. Both Rapala and Manns deep diving plugs will be the best options for locating these fish, with the area around the Crystal River artificial reef known as a local hot spot. Once you locate a promising spot, you can anchor on top of it, and drop frozen sardines and squid to catch gags as well. The fall can be the most fun and productive time to fish. The only challenging part can be finding fish that are always on the move, with changing water temps. Capt. Clay Shidler ClayShidler@Yahoo.com

Monday

352-795-9081

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OCTOBER 2018

NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA/NATURE COAST 5

9/16/18 5:34 PM


SUWANNEE Motel and Campground Accommodations

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H

ey everyone, let's talk fall fishing! Fall fishing, is by far one of my favorite times of the year. The red bite is strong and the trout, both specks and silvers flood the flats! We have already seen an increase in the redfish bite and the trout bite has been increasing, already including some nice gator trout. My favorite way to fish for both species in the fall, is with a B-52 popping cork, paired with a 1/8 Jim's Jig. Bait wise, cut mullet or shrimp for the reds, and for trout a 3 inch, 12 fathom mullet paddle tail, works wonders. When targeting these species, I will be looking for the trout in 2 to

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CAM_NCFL_1018.indd 6

OCTOBER 2018

4 feet of water, especially, once the water dips below 80 degrees. With the reds, I love fishing oyster beds around the mouth of the river, and creeks on a moving tide. Last month, I had a unique opportunity to have a local business book me, to shoot a promo commercial on the water. They are called Bearded Outdoors, based in Cheifland, Florida. They have an amazing clothing line for both hunting and fishing, and even cater to us bearded people, with beard oil and beard balm. Their slogan says a lot about them. Faith, Beards, and The Great Outdoors. They even tied their faith into their logo with a cross thrown on a deer antler. Y'all can check them out at beardedoutdoorsusa.com Well everyone until next month, stay safe out there and have fun! Capt. Jason Clark In The Slot Fishing www.intheslotfishing.com Capt.jasonclark@gmail.com 352-639-3209

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

9/16/18 5:34 PM


STEINHATCHEE Cool Breeze Hot Bite

A

hhh October, the real month when North Florida starts cooling off. Fish develop appetites as water temperature begin to cool down. That is good news for fishermen! Open season for the hard fighting amberjack last until the end of this month. The best bait is a live pinfish or pigfish. Large jigs, in your favorite colors, work fine as well. Plugs and topwater baits are fun to use as mobs of AJ's will chase them down. It is a great idea to replace the treble hooks with a single J hook on the rear. I tie-on a tassel of flashabou to the J hook to give the lure a bit of kick. Whatever bait you use, amberjack put an explanation mark into a days fishing. Why there is a closed season is beyond me as the population is so abundant that you can literally hand feed them. If the limit was dropped to two fish per boat at certain times, it would give anglers an opportunity for enjoyment and a good meal. Sport fishing, catch & release, doesn't always dovetail with the conservation ethic as some fish are gut hooked or die of exhaustion. There is no benefit to tossing a dead fish back. “Sharks have to eat”, is true, but they should earn their living. This should apply to red snapper as well. Grouper fishing will improve markedly Oct-Dec. The start of the southern migration of baitfish will get the grouper greedy. The problem is the red snapper and grouper are cohabitants of the same live bottom. Considering

the abundance of red snapper, it is neigh impossible to target grouper. One trick is to use large live baits or large cut bait cut in to steaks. Steaking the cut bait, as opposed to fillets, allows the skin to protect the meat from being pecked away to the point snapper can eat it. Trolling is a means to reduce snapper by-catch, however, snapper do take large diving plugs. Kingfish can be a happy by-catch to trolling! As the regulation are now, expect to unnecessarily kill a few red snapper while grouper fishing. As another red snapper floats away, it forces one to wonder about the validity of the regulation. Inshore anglers are experiencing a fall run of hard hitting fast running Spanish mackerel as of this writing. The fall run will only improve. Spanish in the fall are much larger than the ones that pass through in the spring. If thirty pound leader material doesn't prevent cut-offs then twist on a short section of #1 or 2 single strand wire. Flashy jigs or spoons cast or trolled work very well. Schools of bait, mostly seen in the mornings and evening are hot spots. Trout and red fishermen will be enjoying hot action on the flats using their 'confidence' bait of choice. Brian Smith | BIG BEND CHARTERS www.BigBendCharters.com CaptBrian@bellsouth.net 877.852.3474 | 352.210.3050

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Marine Sporting Goods, Inc.

Come in to gear up for the fall season. Great financing available. Great deals on new and used inventory. 1866 West US 90, Lake City, FL 386-752-2500 www.mcduffiemarine.com

Servicing the North Florida area for over 60 years. | www.McDuffieMarine.com

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SHRIMP WITH CAULIFLOWER/POTATO MASH

INGREDIENTS

(SERVES 2) • Cauliflower florets (enough •

• •

• •

• 2 green onions minced,

for 1 serving) Potato (enough for 1 serving) Salt and Pepper 20 large Shrimp, peeled and deveined 2 Tablespoons Butter 1 large garlic clove minced

white and green • Handful of parsley, minced • Red pepper flakes (optional) • Oil • 4 Tablespoons Butter • Parsley • 1 tablespoon Lemon Juice

COOKING DIRECTIONS Cook potato in water, in skin, until done, and remove from pan. In same water (add more if necessary) cook cauliflower until soft. Remove skin from potato and mash with cauliflower and 2 tablespoons butter, and salt and pepper to taste. Keep warm.

Thank you to The Crab Plant for the shrimp. Visit their Fresh Seafood Market or enjoy Cooked Seafood to go. You are welcome to sit at their table and view beautiful Kings Bay while you enjoy your delicious, freshly prepared meal, watching manatees, dolphins, pelicans and boats. Or, you can carry it home; your choice. Open Tues-Thurs 10:005:30, Fri-Sat 10:00-8:00. 201 NW 5th St. Crystal River 352-795-4700.

Lynn Crutchfield, Co-Publisher Coastal Angler Magazine of North Central Florida

In large skillet, pour just enough oil to cover bottom. Heat to medium high. Place shrimp in pan and season with salt and pepper. Cook a couple of minutes and turn shrimp over. Add 2 tablespoons butter and minced garlic, parsley and green onions to pan. Add red pepper flakes if using. Continue to cook, moving shrimp to outside edges of pan. Add lemon juice and remaining butter, and move shrimp and garlic and onions around pan to coat shrimp with lemon juice and butter. Spoon cauliflower/potato mash onto plate. (Heat in microwave for a minute.) Place 10 shrimp on top of mash and spoon the remaining sauce over the shrimp. Serve with green vegetable of your choice. Note: This dish came together so fast and easy, and Cary said that he liked the potato/cauliflower mixture better than either potatoes or cauliflower alone.

BAIT & TACKLE IN NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA

ALACHUA FARM AND LUMBER 114101 NW 145th Ave. Alachua, FL 32616 386-462-3003 www.AlachuaFarmandLumber.com

CEDAR KEY MARINA 12780 SR 24 PO Box 744 Cedar Key, FL 32625 352-543-6148 www.CedarKeyMarina.net

44 TACKLE CO. 3177 E Gulf to Lake Inverness, FL 34453 352.726.6100 www.44Tackle.com

DW&D BAIT HOUSE 12831 Whiddon Ave Cedar Key, FL 352-543-6109 352-222-9383

MCDUFFIE MARINE 1866 West US 90 Lake City, FL 32055 386.752.2500 www.mcduffiemarine.com

CEDAR KEY PADDLING 12293 SR 24 Cedar Key, FL 32625 352-665-1276 Dan_Gator@Yahoo.com

OCKLAWAHA BAIT & TACKLE 13600 East CR 25 Ocklawaha, FL 32179 352-816-5853 WIGGLERS BAIT & TACKLE 14499 East Hwy 40 Silver Springs, FL 34488 352.625.1156 AnneReynolds06ar@gmail.com

THE MARINA IN HORSESHOE BEACH 362 3rd Street Horseshoe Beach, FL 32648 352-498-5405 www.TheMarinainHorseshoeBeach.com

YOUR BAIT & TACKLE SHOP HERE Call Lynn at 352-372-4237

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SUWANNEE RIVER/CEDAR KEY

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420 Dock Street Cedar Key, FL 32625 352-543-5142 steamerscedarkey.com info@steamerscedarkey.com

ey there folks, Hope everyone is enjoying a little cooler weather as the fall is quickly approaching. Unlike the weather, the fishing is heating up this time of year. With the water temperature cooling some, the fish are becoming more active. The redfish bite will be as good as it gets in our area this month. My go to rig with my clients is cut mullet fished right on the bottom. I use a simple knocker rig that is made up of a 4/0 circle hook and a 3/8oz egg sinker. I also use a 30lb leader tide to my 20lb braided line. Using a leader will help you to not get cut off as much on the oysters while fishing on the bottom. Fresh mullet makes a huge difference on getting bit so get a castnet and learn how to use it in the off season. The trout will also start firing up this month and the big girls will start feeding strong on the 3’-5’ grass flats. The B52 Super Sounder is by far my favorite cork and in my

opinion it makes the best sound on the market. I use a 30lb leader rigged beneath it with a Saltwater Assassin Sea Shad tail rigged on a 1/8 Saltwater Assassin or Jim’s jigs jig head. Having a wide gap hook is crucial to keeping a fish hooked. Both of these jig heads have a good one. I rigged the jig about 20”-24” beneath the cork unless the water is shallower that two feet. Well folks a hope y’all get out on the water and enjoy what good has made for us. Capt.Jimbo Keith FishCedarKey.com Saltwater Assassin Fishing Charters 352-535-5083

Like us on Facebook! We will cook your catch. We serve fresh local Cedar Key oysters and clams. Try our delicious Gator. We get it directly from the Gator Man himself.

Happy Hour Monday-Friday 3pm-7pm 2-4-1 Wells 1/2 Price Wine $2.50 Bud Light, Miller Lite, Yuengling

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CEDAR KEY PADDLING

(352) 493-0878 Fax (352) 493-0879

Val’s Complete Auto Repair Inc. MV#:60926

15 NW 1st Avenue - P.O. Box 1205 Chiefland, FL 32644

SIGNS BANNERS Copies Fax

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ello everybody, Captain Daniel here to spill my guts with all the tips and tricks I know, for this wonderful place called Cedar Key. All I want to do is help. whoever wants to be helped, catch more targeted fish, and be safe doing it. We are coming off one of the best redfish bites we have had in a long time. It has been harder on our charters to catch in-the-slot, 18 to 27 inches, then it has been over 30 years. My goodness, we have had so many beautiful reds landed, by a lot of first-timers too. We have mainly been catching them with fresh, not frozen, cut bait, and live pin fish on the bottom. I prefer to use a Jim's Jig with the cut bait, and about a 2 or 3 Owners Circle hook on the live bait. You want to hook those bait fish 3/4 of the way back of their dorsal fin, in the meat. Do not spin the thing, we want it to be able to swim around, and when you pull it gently, it makes the fish go on its side like a natural dying fish. Okay, do not hook the things in the eyes. You want your bait to be as healthy as possible, and to act naturally, by trying to get away when the predator fish get close. They won't be able to stand

Forms Letterhead We also offer apparel and promotional items. Envelopes Business Cards Brochures Newsletters & More Invitations Located in Chiefland Shopping Center Wedding & Graduation 208 N Main Street, Chiefland, FL 32626

it! Look over your digital maps so you can see how the water flows around oyster bars, and fills other areas with the incoming tides, and of course, how they empty on the outgoing. Get these baits in there on the edges of the bars, and watch. You will catch more. If you are in a craft that can make way, and 20 minutes goes by with nothing, move to your next spot. Okay, so the trout bite is turning on really nice. Make sure you spend the extra few bucks on the right floats. You want them to click and mimic the shrimps sounds. Pop them, and make them splash. Like bait fish, shrimp are always great baits and work really well. If you like to cast them, get an assorted bunch of different plastics with up to 3 feet of fluorocarbon. Again, Jim's Jigs is a go-to here as well. I hope this helps, and I hope you swing into the shop if you have any questions. Take a kid fishing! Capt. Daniel Cedar Key Paddling 352-665-1276 Dan_Gator@yahoo.com

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INGLIS/YANKEETOWN

O

Available in 17', 20', 22' and 24'

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ctober has to be one of my favorite times of year. The fish are starting to move into their fall patterns, in certain areas, the redfish will school up, and probably, the temperatures are starting to cool off. It has been a little tough over the last month with all the fresh water runoff, and we should be through with all that in October. The redfish will start to move back in, and stage around the creek mouths. I will still be throwing a top-water plug, first thing in the morning. You need to pay attention to the size of the bait in the area, and match your plug size accordingly. You should also keep an eye out for schooling fish, if you are in the 11 prong area. If you are lucky enough to find one, throw a zman scented jerk shadz. This bait is a smaller profile, that does not make a lot of noise entering the water, and won’t spook the school. The trout will start to ease back in as well, as the water temps cool off. I would still go with a zman trout trick to target these guys. This bait allows you to work the bottom extremely well, and cover a vast area to find the pockets of fish. If offshore is your game, the grouper should really start going after trolling plugs. If you have any well-kept rock pile numbers in the 35 to 40-foot range, you should be golden. If you get bit over a good pile, circle back and drop a few live baits on it to see if you can coax a few more off the bottom. The snook bite will

pick up this month as well. I would have to say a gold spoon would be my go-to for these guys this time of year. You need to locate good moving water around structure, like oyster bars or grass points. Make sure you beef up your leader material a little, or you are going to end up heartbroken. Until next month, have fun, be safe and take your kids fishing. If you have a chance, check out, Captains for Clean Water. Everything that is going on down south, might not be affecting us, but it is still our responsibility to help where we can. Everyone in the outdoor community would be doing the same for us if we needed it. Capt. Craig Spitznogle www.floridaflatscharterco.com Florida Flats Charter Company (352)445-4978

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TALES FROM THE TUPPERWARE NAVY

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elcome back Yak fans. This month, the story is about the art of fishing backwards! As some of you know, I have a favorite spot that I always head to at high tide, and it's called home, but due to circumstances (a trip to Ozello got cancelled) I had everything loaded, and nowhere to go, so I went fishing! I suppose an explanation is in order as to why I don't like high tide fishing. The area I was fishing is about 20 miles of salt marsh and flats, and as the tide comes up, the fish move in, making them way harder to find. Whereas on the outgoing tide, I set up, and let them come to me. The day called for a mid-morning high tide, at about 3 feet, but it went way beyond that! If you've ever fished the marsh and grass flats, then you know that your buddies can be on the other side of the grass line, and you can hear them but not see them. That wasn't the problem on this day; the water was within inches of the top of the grass. I could see the other kayak, nearly a quarter of a mile away; there was that much water. So, I figured, if the fish move in, so will I, and we worked our way back in further than I have in years. The little foot wide creeks, were now three to four feet deep; it was awesome. The deeper we paddled, the more movement we saw. We were getting back into the actual tree line places, that you can only paddle to a very few times a year. To give you an idea; you know

how the snails will work up the grass to stay out of the water at the high end of the tide, we were so far back in that the critters were at the top of the grass, we're grasshoppers. LOL As we got all the way back to the forest tree line, I asked my buddy, “When we're this far back, do we need a fishing license or a hunting license?” We turned at the tree line and I immediately caught a couple of nice black drum, and then ran into a school of big reds, and therefore, I call it fishing backwards. We were so far in, that the fish following the high tide were coming to us. Well, I'm not going to change my habits or my preferences for an outgoing tide, but it was interesting to be able to paddle around a half a mile back in from the outer mangrove line. By the end of the day, we had landed some nice reds and then we saw some big snook, but they didn't want to play that day. The other benefit of fishing a super high tide, is that you can explore your favorite marsh area and pick up details for later trips, I learned a lot just being able to see over the salt grass, so give it a try. Hope to see you out there, and to my Tampa Bay readers, come on up, our water is fine. Till next time, Bruce

CENTRAL FLORIDA INLAND

Y

es, Forest Fishers, the summer has finally come to an end. If you braved the heat of the last few months, you would have noticed the signs of good fishing to come. All the conditions are right, and I expect to hear some interesting fish stories this snowbird season. As the months get colder, the focus of most anglers shifts to crappie (specks). While crappie are fatter and school-up more around Christmas, the time to find your best spots is now. I've seen more this summer than ever before, so there should be plenty to go around. Lake George and the St. John's River are known to have larger fish than our smaller lakes and rivers. On the other hand, lakes like Bryant and Halfmoon, give better odds on finding fish quickly. Crappie are scattered right now, so slow-trolling jigs or minnows, is the way to go. Use a fish finder to target ledges and brush piles. Otherwise, just drop a bait straight down to estimate the depth, and feel for structure. I always keep one rod in hand to add a bumping action, and put the rest in rod holders. A 1/16 oz jig head, with a realistic looking body (strait/split tail) is my go-to for vertical jigging. Curly tail jigs work for dragging behind, and Bruce Butler | "Stumbling Gypsy" live minnows work for everything. (352) 428-5347 All debris from the 2017 storm Bruce@IndianBayOutfitters.com season has now had time to grow Web: www.IndianBayOutfitters.com

algae and support life. A good size brush pile can hold loads of fish; with different species such as bass and catfish, side by side. Having a GPS to mark structure is super helpful, but you can also look at your surroundings to remember the basic location. There's still plenty of big fish in the shallows this month, and they're feeding-up for the winter ahead. The dams at Rodman and Moss Bluff are also big players this time of year. The rule of thumb is: Fish shallow on the warm days, and deep on the cold. Fishing the forest can be tricky. It helps to divide it into areas, and try a different one each outing. When the fishing's good on one lake, it's neighboring lakes will be too. Clear waters stay the most consistent, but you need to be stealthy and make longer casts on those. If you have any questions, or are looking for someone experienced to show you around the wilderness areas, feel free to contact me anytime. Also, I love hearing your crazy fish stories, and would be happy to feature pics that showcase this awesome, unique place.

John Freeze Writer/Photographer Kayak and Shoreside Fishing Tours 352-216-5798 Swampsurf@embarqmail.com

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HOMOSASSA

STA-SEA’S NATURE COAST ADVENTURES

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ith just three months left, grab a grouper while you can. Shorter days and cooling gulf water temperatures, send the grouper migrating inshore and allow an easier reach for more anglers. Standard bottom fishing rigs with frozen sardines, threadfin herring or live pin fish will work well, but if you’re like me - you can’t wait to take out the trolling plugs. Various large-lipped plugs like MirrOlure, Rapala x-raps and Yozuri Mag Minnows are all excellent choices. Choose a lure that coincides with the depth your fishing, then troll over the structure about four mph, and hold on. The trout which have been seeking comfort offshore in the deeper water, will now be migrating inshore. The spotty bottom inside the Bird Rack is generally a good starting point for the month of October. The kelp grass that attaches itself over the shallow “yellow” hard bottom, has been growing all summer and it is fine trout habitat. Locate these areas and set up your drifts using DOA deadly combo cork rig with a glow, root beer or watermelon colored shrimp. Another one of my favorites, are the scented baits such as the MirrOlure Lil’ John on a 1/8th jig head. They can be rigged by themselves, or under a rattling cork. Large red fish schools are roaming the mangrove points in our area, and many are quality-sized fish. Freshcut mullet or live pin fish around the rocky points, seldom get refused. Live shrimp works well too, but the abundance of bait stealers can be frustrating, so a larger piece of bait or select-sized shrimp, will stay in the strike zone longer. The floating grass will be disappearing too, so now it’s time to put your favorite artificial back on, and cover some ground

Snook are another good choice as well, and the season is open; as they are feeding aggressively in preparation for the upcoming cooler months. Points with good current flow, and deeper water adjacent to them, are good prospecting areas. DOA glow jerk baits and MirrO’lure MirrrO’dines are always a snook favorite. Use these baits aggressively and a steady tempo twitch, twitch retrieve with an occasional pause; will usually generate an explosive strike. October is one of the best months to fish our area. There is something going on for everyone, both inshore and offshore; so please enjoy some of the best our Nature Coast has to offer. Capt. Dan Clymer | 352.418.2160 www.crystalriver-fishing.com

write this column every month to entertain, and also, to share my journey. Its normally pretty lighthearted, and hopefully, educational. This month though, I would like to talk about something much more serious, the catastrophe, of what is happening all over our state, the red tide and algae bloom. We are seeing record numbers of fish kills. We have stood by, and watched the decline of our amazing waterways. Today, that decline is accelerating at a record pace. Death of these waters is imminent if we, as a whole, don’t take action. This is a state of dire emergency. If this were a hurricane, we would get relief as soon as the storm passed. Well, this storm isn't passing! Sure, in a few months, it will cool off, and the rains will cease, and we will think everything is back to normal. It won't ever be back to normal until every Floridian takes a stand to save our waters! Our fisheries are dying. Our estuaries are dying. Our precious everglades are dying. Mosquito Lagoon, one of the best fisheries in the entire world, is close to death. We have witnessed the long-term decline of estuaries across south Florida – and we have seen the rapid acceleration of that decline, over just the past few years. There have been no significant changes made to solve this enormous problem. I can't stress strongly enough, that the time for change is now. The time for change was long ago, and we failed to see the magnitude. We have to show our children and grandchildren that we will not take “No” for an answer, and that we the people, demand change. What will it take? Have you driven south lately? Have you smelled the stench of rotting carcasses? It’s heartbreaking. Dead manatees are washing up on our beaches, also, snook, grouper, dolphins and turtles. Our captains, tour guides, bait stores, recreational rental companies, real estate firms, and Florida tourism in

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general, are taking a huge financial hit. The Coastal Conservation Association needs volunteers to implement their initiatives. They have projects that will directly affect SW Florida, SE Florida and Mosquito Lagoon. The CCA is the only organization that has actual habitat projects & are working for water quality. The Coastal Conservation Association works diligently to develop creative and workable solutions, which will provide additional short term and lasting relief to our estuaries. Please visit them at CCAFlorida.org and volunteer your time. You can also visit captainsforcleanwater.org and take a stand. It's up to all of us to make this change, and take our Florida back! Don't let Florida be just a theme park destination. Let's make our waters pristine again. Fishing Capital of the World, is a title that is sadly withering away. Fishing with Captain Stacy 352-553-3604 Facebook CaptainStacy Horak Instagram captain_stacyhorakfishing Email freeinajeep@gmail.com www.fishingwithcaptainstacy.com

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HORSESHOE BEACH

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KEATON BEACH

Tails from Captain’s tackle box

t is offshore trolling time! Ok, it is time to break out those stretch 30 plus plugs, and put them to work for some line-stretching, drag-testing good times. Colors from the captain’s box are red and white, green, and silver with blue or black backs, always top the list, and then a clown color, or just whatever on the rack that looks odd, just because you never know. Now, with plug on hand, rig with 25-inch of single strand 90- pound wire leader and 150-pound swivel. This combination will help you keep your investment, and not give it to

the first toothy fish that strikes it. I like an 80-pound power promain line on 3/0 or 4/0 reel with 100-pound class rods. (They just hold up better.) As for inshore, the top choice in October will be trout on the flats, with soft plastic jigs. Colors will be fire tiger, and white twitching shad, on a 1/4 oz. lead head with wide gap hook. Hope to see ya out there! Capt. Brett Selph UpTheLimitFishingadv@Yahoo.com 352 498-6029

Ted Dubois with a 25.5 inch red fish, caught 8/21 off main Horseshoe channel.

T

CARY CRUTCHFIELD ALLIGATOR GUIDE FLORIDA CRACKER ALLIGATOR, INC.

Guiding State Permitted Hunts in Central & North Florida

352.372.4237

Gator8Crutch@aol.com Your permit or mine Gator Season - Aug 15 thru Oct 31 16 NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA/NATURE COAST

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Dawn Taylor and Juan Perez of Perry, Fl. with a true double of trout, caught in late August.

rout fishing has been great in September, so far, (today is the 12th) as long as you find the right mix of stain and clean water, with very little difference in how to fish, unless you choose to fish in the darker end of the spectrum. Folks have reported shortening leaders to catch fish from the darker (coffeecolored) water, way up north, and this makes sense, since the light penetration can only display your offering, so deep in those conditions. They can’t strike what they can’t see. We have continued to catch limits of trout on board One More Cast, with nice fish over 20 inches, mixed in the catch on almost every trip, while still fishing with live pinfish rigged up on 34 inches of TrikFish 30-pound mono, under Back Bay Thunders. We have averaged one or two reds a trip, as these “rock eating devils” as I prefer to call them, are scattered in the stained water over the past few weeks. October should see the flats bust wide open, with most species present, willing and able to begin gorging themselves, for the oncoming change in the season. Cooler nights should make for cooler surface temps bringing shrimp further up in the shallows, as well as schools of white bait. This influx of food and protein, makes for great fishing, as the trout and reds are beefed up, and are in their healthiest condition of the year in October and November. Almost any bait you want to toss will take fish, once the water temps get down in the mid 70’s which should happen by late October. Top-water, including stick baits, prop baits

and chuggers, lipped jerk baits, soft plastics rigged and bounced on jigs alone, or combined with an Original Cajun Thunder, will take limits of trout and reds. If the floating grass moves out, the plug fishing will be fun; if not, wait for the Northeasters in November to clear the way for top water fun. Reds will gang up and move up on the flats, back towards the creeks (once this too-fresh water, from the torrential amounts of rain we have experienced this summer subsides). Weedless spoons, like the Intruder and Hex spoons by Precision Tackle, will find and catch reds. Have Gold and Copper in 1/2 ounce handy; but don’t forsake the new Cajun Copper Hex spoon in clearer water later in the fall, and early winter. Meanwhile, Let's Go Fishing! Pat McGriff dba One More Cast guide service for 28 years! www.onemorecast.net onemorecast@gtcom.net 850.838.7541

Tracy Carr of Lake Park, Ga., with a nice trout taken on a live pinfish under a Back Bay Thunder

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ST. AUGUSTINE

SURF & PIER

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his is the month, the one month of the year when you can count on catching fish in the surf zone! Whether from the pier, or the beach, this is the month to get your string stretched! The water temperature is dropping, and the mullet-run that started in September is still on-going. The most important thing to remember this time of the year, is matching the hatch. As long as there is mullet in the surf, then fish with mullet. All of the predator fish will be on the inside, and outside of the first sand bar. It does not matter if you use fresh chunks, or frisky livefinger mullet, something will munch your bait. It could be redfish, bluefish, ladyfish, shark, tarpon, trout, flounder, or a lot of other species. A small 3/0 circle hook will get the job done for most fish. I like to use a sinker slider rig with a 15-inch dropper of 30 lb. mono. For big reds and tarpon, I step it up to a 7/0 with 100 lb. mono. On the top part of the sinker slider, I use six feet of 100 lb. mono. This technique is very helpful when sliding a big fish up in the wash, for a quick picture, before releasing. It was a crazy summer, for the fact that we caught pompano all summer long. I guess that not all of them were up for the long trip to the OBX of North Carolina. Now, is the time to catch the big ones that do not come back until the water gets cold in the Carolinas. For these tasty hard-fighting members

of the jack family, rigging is simple. A two-hook double dropper rig is the best way to go. A 2/0 circle hook will get the job done for a two- pound pomp, a five-pound black drum, or a twenty-pound redfish. All three of those fish, plus the tasty whiting, will all strike a double dropper rig, tipped with fresh bait. Great bait, equals great fishing. When you hit the surf zone, you should have multiple baits. The go-to baits are FKS. aka fresh killed shrimp, live sand fleas, live clams, and blue crab knuckles. The live shrimp, soon to be FKS, you’ll buy at the bait store. No water needed, just a plastic container to keep them out of the ice. The sand fleas, you’ll have to catch at the beach. Your favorite seafood retailer can supply the live clams and blue crabs. Remember, with all four of these baits, match the hatch in size. A oneinch by half-inch piece, is all that it takes. The fish are munching on fleas and donax clams, both smaller than a quarter. Go now, and go often, because it doesn’t get any better than Octoberfish! Cheers! Noel Kuhn 43 years of surf fishing experience Surf fishing guide and long distance casting coach. Founding member of Florida Surf Casters club. 904-945-0660 www.TheSurfAngler.com

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his month it’s all about the mullet. Our fall mullet run is one of the best times of year to get outdoors and do some fishing. Cooler air temperatures and hungry predatory fish, means fun for everyone on the water. The best areas to fish will be easy to find right now; where you see the mullet, you’ll also find redfish, trout, flounder, and just about anything else you want to catch. These fish will be lurking just underneath the mullet schools, looking for an easy snack. There are countless numbers of lures, both hard and soft plastic, that do a great job of imitating a mullet. This month is great to go the top-water plug route, and use a Rapala Skitterwalk or Rapala Skitter V. Both are great “walk the dog” type plugs that even the shyest redfish or trout can’t resist this time year. If you want to go subsurface, try the soft plastics from Saltwater Assassin, like their Elite Shiner paddle tail. It looks just a like a mullet and can be fished weedless or on a traditional jighead. Along with the influx of mullet to Northeast Florida, comes our fall flounder run. Some of the best catches, both in numbers and in size, come in the fall. The fish-finder rig is the go-to for many anglers looking to catch some flounder. It consists of using about 12 inches or so, of leader, attached to a swivel with a barrel weight above the swivel. You want to use enough weight to hold the bottom, and a hook, sized accordingly to the size

of mullet or minnow you’re using. Another favorite rig is a Slayer Inc. jighead in either 1/4 or 3/8 oz., with a finger mullet pinned to it. The jighead rig allows you to fish without getting hung up as easily on structure, like oysters and rocks. The inlets will come alive this month. Big bull redfish will be schooling up in the deeper areas of St. Augustine Inlet and Mantanzas inlet. A blue crab or mullet on the bottom will get their attention. As long as the it doesn’t get too chilly, there will also be some tarpon around the inlets feeding on the bigger mullet schools, so make sure to have a bigger rod ready to go for those monsters. If you missed out on the flood tides last month don't worry; you still have plenty of days in October to find some tailers. Redfish and sheepshead will still be tailing, away looking for crabs, snails, and just about anything that hangs out in the grass. Any small soft plastic paddle tail or shrimp imitation will work well for the reds. I like the Saltwater Assassin Lil Boss rigged on a weedless hook. Now will also be a great time to toss an inline spinner bait like the Saltwater Assassin Mac Daddy Spinner. It has all the thump to lure the redfish out of even the thickest grass. Capt. Tommy Derringer www.InshoreAdventures.net 904-377-3734

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Find Your Copy of

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INGLIS/YANKEETOWN Young Boats (Inglis) US 19/98 NAPA (Inglis) 24 US 19/98 N Drummond Bank Capt Cove Outfitters 39 W SR 40 Shrimp Landing Compass Homes and Land River Coast Realty 84 Hwy West Black Water Grill & Bar

CRYSTAL RIVER Drummond Bank Moore Bait & Tackle Twin Rivers Marina Plantation Inn West Marine Coldwell Banker Pete’s Pier Rural King Dan’s Clam Stand 2315 N Sunshine Path AAA Marine The Crab Plant American Pro Dive Seafood Seller Smoke House BBQ Lollygaggers River Ranch Sodium Fishing Citrus County Chamber of Commerce

INVERNESS McPherson’s Outdoors Apopka Marine Gulf to Lake Marine 700 S.Thompson. Ave. Fisherman’s Restaurant Wild Bill’s Air Boat Tours Stumpknockers Coach’s Nick Nicholas Ford 44 Tackle Co. Brown Water Airboats

FLORAL CITY Sleepy Hollow Resort L

Murray Ford Bryan’s Ace Hardware Cedar River Restaurant Sav-A-Lot Huddle House

Ace Hardware NAPA 809 E Hathway (US A 27) Julie’s Diner Drummond Bank

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Drummond Bank BubbaQue’s The Deer Camp The Print Shop 208 N. Main The Gathering Table NAPA 1523 N Young Blvd (US 19-98) Shep’s Welding Beachamp Saw Shop Val’s Complete Auto 15 NW 1st Ave Wayne Fryer M/H

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Media Kit

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If you have a suggestion for a distribution location for COASTAL ANGLER MAGAZINE, please let us know. We can be reached at 352-372-4237 or Crutch@CoastalAnglerMagazine.com. You can view all forty-plus magazines in the US, including the Bahamas, Costa Rica and Puerto Rico/Virgin Islands, at www.CoastalAnglerMagazine.com.

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E

ight years ago, Jeff Kolodzinki spent 24 grueling hours on the dock of a Minnesota pond to break the Guinness World Record for Most Fish Caught in a Day. With a 10-foot pole simply rigged with a float, fluorocarbon line and a barbless hook holding live bait, he yanked 2,649 fish from the water in a single day. Dubbed the Marathon Man, Kolodzinki will attempt to break his own world record on Sept. 11-12, 2018 at Giant Goose Ranch in Canton, Ill. Kolodzinski already has his spot in the record books. This time he’s doing it to introduce people and families to fishing and to increase awareness and financial support for the Fishing For Life, a non-profit, tax exempt charitable organization whose Next GEN program finds mentors for children of families in need. A special focus within the program serves families of veterans who have lost loved ones while serving our nation. Not only is Kolodzinski the current world record holder for fish caught in a 24-hour period, but he also represented the United States seven times in international competition at the World Championship of Freshwater Fishing. He currently serves as the Fishing Brand Manager for Johnson Outdoors and is a longtime fishing industry professional with many awards.

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History’s Alive

on Palm Beach’s Wrecks

By Andrea Whitaker • Photo by Andrea Whitaker

B

elow the ocean’s surface rest giants, the wooden and steel beauties that once demanded the sea’s attention. Lying there quietly, patiently suspended under the weight of water, what secrets do they hold? What lost memories are kept in their walls at the bottom of the sea? There is a calming silence as a diver approaches these giants. In the middle of a sandy desert, a diver approaches a dark shadow. As the current pushes them closer, the shadow grows and the shape of a bow or stern emerges. Then the sheer size of the sunken vessel towers overhead. It is dark and mysterious, yet full of life... and forgotten memories. Many wrecks off the coast of Palm Beach were sunk in the 1960s and now sport coats of sponges and coral growth, surrounded by underwater life. One in particular, the Mizpah, is a popular wreck to dive. Once a private Greek luxury liner, she was commissioned by the U.S. government for service in WWII, her rails outfitted with guns to patrol the coast for German U-Boats. After decommission, she sat in a storage yard for some time before being re-discovered. Her original family could not bear to see her wither on land, so they cleaned her up and gave her a burial at sea. I had the honor last August to dive with a granddaughter of the family who purchased the Mizpah and made an artificial reef out of her. My dive buddy showed me photos of the vessel in her prime and shared stories of childhood on the boat. It was an incredible experience to watch her eyes light up when she first saw the Mizpah underwater... how it had become a beautiful habitat. Seeing her excitement and, post-dive, her quiet reverence, made me realize there are secrets and lost memories in the walls of these sunken vessels and that these forgotten walls now have new purpose and life. Once at the bottom of the sea, these sunken giants attract life quicker than you might expect. In Palm Beach, from mid-August through October, wrecks are surrounded by Goliath groupers. Their favorite places to aggregate for spawning is around wrecks.

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Photo by Devon Kinney and family

Dive operators have created The Palm Beach County Diving Association (PBCDA) to give divers and dive operators a bigger voice in local ocean-related issues, and to aid in the sinking of other ships as part of an active artificial reef program. On Oct. 6, the PBCDA is hosting its annual Artificial Reef Fundraiser at the Loggerhead Marinelife Center in Juno Beach. All proceeds go to the creation of artificial reefs in Palm Beach County. Tickets include an evening of entertainment, delicious food and beer, and a plethora of raffle and silent auction prizes. Tickets are available for purchase online at www.divepbc.com/participate. All are welcome to attend and be a part of the local underwater history.

9/17/18 10:54 AM


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By Wade Senti

L

and-based shark fishing (LBSF) has been enjoyed by anglers along the coastlines of Florida for many decades with limited spotlight, public concern, or ecological evaluation. While events such as deceased large hammerhead and tiger sharks appearing on several beaches in 2017 catalyzed a deeper examination of this type of fishing, greater exposure due to social media and a growing popularity of LBSF has also driven the need for a review by the Florida Wildlife Commission (FWC). This summer the FWC established 10 workshops around the state during the months of July and August for discussion and feedback on ideas for proposed policy and guideline implementation for LBSF. These forums were open to the public. I attended the FWC Workshop in Melbourne, Fla. on Aug. 27. I was not surprised that there was a full room, mostly of concerned citizens, including several local mayors as well as a few activists. Notably, the concern was mostly about public safety regarding this type of fishing from citizens, while activists pushed shark welfare. Anglers comprised a vocal 20 or so percent of the room. As Bob Dylan sang, “the times, they are a-changing.” As anglers, we are faced with issues and dilemmas our previous generations did not have. Global fisheries are under attack, while coastal fisheries are under increasing regulation. In Florida, coastal fisheries have shown tremendous progress with recovery of shark populations, as noted by the FWC in the meeting. The fear at hand by anglers is penalizing the LBSF community. These anglers, who pride themselves on a catch and release mentality, range from recreational fishermen to professional land-based charter guides. For some, this type of fishing provides a means for a way of life, while for others it’s a challenging sport unlike any other. A strong debate is embracing the positive, such as using LBSF as an opportunity for data collection and scientific research. For example, NOAA provides free tagging kits for any angler interested in tagging sharks prior to release as well as reporting tags on caught sharks. During the workshop, the FWC presented a number of topics for discussion and feedback, all of which can be found on their website in a downloadable presentation. The highlights included: 1. Special Permits for LBSF – There was overwhelming support of this by all parties (this would include education requirement with limited to no cost for the permit). 2. Restricting time/locations for LBSF – nighttime hours only and/or restrictions from certain public beaches. 3. Expanded Rules for Prohibited Species – prohibiting shorebased tournaments for certain species, restrictions on handling (keep in water), and use of specific gear to maximize survival of released sharks. While the above are merely preliminary recommendations and an outright ban on land-based shark fishing does not appear to be imminent, further data-driven research would lead to true long-term solutions for protecting sharks, supporting anglers, and informing the general public with policies that work for everyone. We shall await the decisions of the commission in December.

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hen one thinks of Bradford Marine, it’s normally in the context of the expansive services they offer related to mega yacht repair, refit and yacht sales. However, for the last several years Bradford Marine, Inc. has been manufacturing concrete floating docks in Fort Lauderdale and Freeport, Grand Bahama for both commercial and residential use. Why not? Floating docks go hand-inhand with motor yachts. On Aug. 24, Bradford Marine completed installation of 180 feet of concrete docks alongside the beautiful Bahamas property in Freeport, Grand Bahama. With this new build coupled with several others, Bradford Marine is well positioned to take on almost any concrete floating dock project, whether residential or commercial. Contact Corbin Engle at 954-791-3800 or corbin@bradford-marine.com for ordering details. Go to bradford-marine. com/docks for more information.

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By Nick Carter

P

oling mangrove edges and flats in search of tailing and belly crawling reds is as much hunting as it is fishing. When the target is sighted and it’s time to take a shot with an 8-weight fly rod, your aim better be on target. Gillz pro staffer Noah Miller, of Melbourne, Fla., has spent the on-the-water hours it takes to consistently take reds on the fly. He’s one of those anglers who knows there are still plenty of fish in the famous inshore waters around Titusville. The Indian River, Banana River and Mosquito Lagoon might be facing water quality challenges, but the fishing remains good. Right now, during the fall mullet run and lasting into February is prime time on Florida’s east coast.

“There’s lots of forage, and the fish are happy,” Miller said of current conditions. “They’re very opportunistic this time of year and will eat almost any fly, as long as it is presented correctly.” The redfish display a lot of schooling activity in preparation for a late fall spawn. These fish are resident to their respective waters and remain there through the seasons, even during the spawn. They can be encountered in large schools of 100 fish or more, and finding them is the key to catching them. “Put in the time on the pushpole,” Miller coached. “These fish do move, but they might only be 200 yards away from where they were yesterday. If things look right and you think there should be fish around, don’t leave an area until you’re certain they’re not there.” If the fish are not visible, it is tough to catch them on a fly. With conventional gear, an angler can make long searching casts to cover water for fish that are not showing themselves. With a fly rod, you’re better off holding the fly on the deck until you spot a fish. Seeing the fish and which way it is headed allows for presentation of the fly. You want it to plop down in front of the fish and close, but not too close. “About 40 feet is the cast I like to make,” said Miller. “You’ll be able to tell if he’s seen it and is interested right away… as soon as the fly hits the water. Then you want to start stripping it away from the fish to make it look like a fleeing crab, shrimp or whatever fly you’re fishing.” Miller caught the redfish on the cover of this month’s editions of Coastal Angler Magazine in stained water with a Seaducer pattern that had purple and black hackle feathers for a tail, a black EP Fiber head and bead chain eyes. That fly worked for the 26-incher on the cover, but this time of year presentation is much more important than fly selection. Noah Miller is a Gillz (gillz-gear.com) pro-staffer and is co-owner of Florida Fly Co., which provides the things fly rodders need to fish Florida’s waters. Check them out on Instagram @FloridaFlyCo and on Facebook.

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By Tom Schlichter Photo by Paul Dixon

M

ontauk, NY. It’s known locally as “The End,” and it’s marketed as “The Fishing Capital of the World!” It can back up both claims. “This is an awesome place for fly- and light-tackle fall thrills says charter skipper Paul Dixon of To the Point Charters (516-314-1185; www.flyfishingmontauk.com). “During October, the inshore action with speedy false albacore, stripers and monster bluefish absolutely sizzles.” Dixon has been fishing Montauk waters for 25 years, loading customers aboard his Contender Tournament 25 and working anywhere from the shadow of Montauk’s iconic lighthouse at the tip of the South Fork to Orient Point at the eastern terminus of Long Island’s North Fork. In the winter months, he charters out of Key Largo to fish the Everglades and Florida Keys. “It’s in the rips and coves at Montauk that the fall mayhem really

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comes together,” said Dixon, who loves targeting albies with fly rod in hand. Through September, you’ll find pods of Fat Alberts scattered across Long Island’s East End, but once the rainbait exits the bays, Montauk explodes with fish.” According to Dixon, at the height of the run so many bay anchovies stack up in the rips surrounding Montauk Point that the water actually appears brown with the immense schools. “At that point,” said the skipper, “the albies feed in two ways. They’ll cruise through the densest baitfish schools in tight packs, turning on their sides with their mouths open and simply strain anchovies as they move along. They are tough to hook under those conditions since they aren’t singling out specific targets. Wait a little while though, and they’ll begin to bust up the baitfish schools. That’s when the fishing absolutely breaks loose and every cast has the potential to connect.” While light-tackle fans can hook-up using small tins like a Deadly Dick or a white 1-oz. Panther Martin Big Fin swimbait, Dixon prefers the long wand when sea conditions allow. “These fish hit hard and run fast, so go with the best fly fishing gear you can afford,” he suggested. “I use Cortland Compact floating/intermediate lines, Rise fly rods and Tibor reels. For patterns, 2- to 3-inch Epoxy Minnows get the job done most of the time.” Dixon pointed out that it’s important to know exactly what you are casting for each time you let your line fly. “The albies will be slicing right through the baitfish schools, and it’s important to lead them by several feet,” he said. “The bass, meanwhile, stick close together and plow through the schools like they are mowing a lawn. For these, bring your fly right across the front of the pack. Either way, stay in the bait with each cast. If your offering lands outside of the baitfish school, it’s going to get slammed by a monster blue.” Launch your own boat at Montauk for $25 at Gone Fishing Marina (www.gonefishingmarina78.com). For overnight stays, Montauk Harborside Resort Hotel and Snug Harbor Motel and Marina (www. montauksnugharbor.com) offer suitable accommodations at reasonable prices. Plan your visit with the Montauk Chamber of Commerce (www. montaukchamber.com).

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TIPS FROM A PRO

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BRANDON LESTER

O

ne of the best parts of summer ending is the beginning of fall fishing and FROGS! I love to fish topwater frogs over grass, and this time of year is prime time. I live about 45 minutes from Lake Guntersville in Alabama, and there’s no place better, or more famous, for frog fishing than Guntersville. In the parking lot this time of year, there’s no telling how many different states you will see license plates from. I’ve fished all over this country and Guntersville definitely doesn’t have a monopoly on the frog bite. It has more matted grass than other TVA lakes, but fisheries up north have loads of grass too. And the bass up north seem to be more eager to bite. I think it’s because they aren’t targeted as heavily as they are down here. If I had the opportunity to take someone out and try to get them fired up about bass fishing, I think fishing a frog over matted vegetation would be my choice. If that person’s heart rate didn’t spike when a big bass blew up through the mat on their frog, then they would be better off doing something else. And then once they’ve seen a blow-up, the excitement level for the next one is all the higher. I get a huge smile on my face every time I see it happen no matter how many thousands of times it has happened. Just watching a fish blow up on a frog is exciting, but you also need to get him in the boat for that all-important photo op or weigh-in stage. For that you must have the right

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gear. If you throw a hollow frog like the one in this photo over matted grass and he bites, you probably won’t get him in using monofilament line and a rod and reel from the department store. My setup for frog fishing is a sure-fire winner. Rod: MHX FP885 with Winn split grips and Winn Grip Sleeves | Daiwa reel | 60 lb. Vicious braid | Spro frog. Give it a try this weekend. I know it will work for you.

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Rates as low as 5.99% on new Suzuki outboards on approved credit.* [60 Months]

If you’re in the market to buy, we have the deals! See your participating Suzuki Marine dealer today for all the details or visit www.suzukimarine.com.

Gimme Six Extended Protection promo is applicable to new Suzuki Outboard Motors from 25 to 350 HP in inventory which are sold and delivered to buyer between 10/01/18 and 12/31/18 in accordance with the promotion by a Participating Authorized Suzuki Marine dealer in the continental US and Alaska to a purchasing customer who resides in the continental US or Alaska. Customer should expect to receive an acknowledgement letter and full copy of contract including terms, conditions and wallet card from Suzuki Extended Protection within 90 days of purchase. If an acknowledgement letter is not received in time period stated, contact Suzuki Motor of America, Inc. – Marine Marketing via email: marinepromo@suz.com. The Gimme Six Promotion is available for pleasure use only, and is not redeemable for cash. Instant Savings apply to qualifying purchases of select Suzuki Outboard Motors made between 10/01/18 and 12/31/18. For list of designated models, see participating Dealer or visit www.suzukimarine.com. Instant Savings must be applied against the agreed-upon selling price of the outboard motor and reflected in the bill of sale. (Suzuki will, in turn, credit Dealer’s parts account.) There are no model substitutions, benefit substitutions, rain checks, or extensions. Suzuki reserves the right to change or cancel these promotions at any time without notice or obligation. * Financing offers available through Synchrony Retail Finance. As low as 5.99% APR financing for 60 months on new and unregistered Suzuki Outboard Motors. Subject to credit approval. Not all buyers will qualify. Approval, and any rates and terms provided, are based on credit worthiness. $19.99/month per $1,000 financed for 60 months is based on 5.99% APR. Hypothetical figures used in calculation; your actual monthly payment may differ based on financing terms, credit tier qualification, accessories or other factors such as down payment and fees. Offer effective on new, unregistered Suzuki Outboard Motors purchased from a participating authorized Suzuki dealer between 10/01/18 and 12/31/18. “Gimme Six”, the Suzuki “S” and model names are Suzuki trademarks or ®. Don’t drink and drive. Always wear a USCG-approved life jacket and read your owner’s manual. © 2018 Suzuki Motor of America, Inc.

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