February Fishng Report
SURF, PIERS: Amy Jarvis of the Sunglow Pier reported pompano and reds up to 25 inches, while at the NSB docks, Jeff Burkhead of Fishin’ Cove Bait & Tackle reported trout with pompano and whiting in the surf. Leo Norris of Daytona Beach Shores’ Fishing Shack Bait & Tackle also reported bluefish and drums in the surf. Bob Avens, of The Fishin’ Hole, offered a similar report for the surf, while the piers featured sheepshead, black drum, bluefish and a few reds.
OFFSHORE: Capt. Nick Stephens reported cobia, seabass, triggerfish and vermillion snapper. Burkhead reported dolphin, but added that “they’re 45-50 miles out.” He also said, “there’s cobia down to the south and wahoo to the north.”
PONCE INLET, HALIFAX RIVER: Blake Kenton of the New Smyrna Marina’s The Fishing Store reported sheepshead at the jetty. While Burkhead reported big sheepshead at the inlet and snook, tarpon and black drum at the bridges. Capt. Kyle Busby emailed: “The (Tomoka River) bass action past the I-95 bridge has been the highlight. These fish were in full-blown spawn mode on this past full moon. There are too many beds to count. Most of these fish are in the 4-to-5 pound range, but there are larger ones mixed in as well as a few nice snook. These fish are eating soft plastics and live shrimp. Action in Spruce Creek has still been a little slow.” Stephanie Brown of Granada Pier Bait & Tackle saw “plenty of trout,” along with sheepshead, mangrove snappers, redfish and snook. From Norris: “Redfish, sheepshead and flounder using sand fleas in the inlet and it’s black drum, bluefish, sheepshead, redfish and snook back in Spruce Creek.” While Avens reported trout, with occasional flounder and redfish in the rivers. Richard Siano of Don’s Bait & Tackle reported trout, some blues, reds and mangrove snapper.
TOMOKA BASIN, RIVER: Capt. Barry Englehardt emailed: “Keeper redfish in river and basin along with small black drum, blue fish, snapper, bass and one snook. One day of fly fishing with a crab pattern fly produced six reds and three bass.” Capt. Kent Gibbens reported redfish, but said “they’re not eating in the basin. (Trout are) hit and miss. There’s lots of sailfish mullet.”
MOSQUITO LAGOON, INDIAN RIVER: Greg Noel of Edgewater’s Lagoon Bait & Tackle reported black drum around Tiger Shoals. “Trout are still plentiful, especially around the docks at night. Haulover Canal has sheepshead. The shrimp is phenomenal right now.” Capt. Michael Savedow emailed: “Steady bite with lots of variety on live shrimp (in Edgewater). Each trip had a few keeper trout and mangroves, a couple runt redfish and snooklets. More jack crevalle being caught with an early spring pattern emerging with water temps mid-to-upper 60s. Always a few sheepshead and whiting also.” Capt. Doug Davis emailed from his Saltybones excursion Sunday: “We did a half day offshore trip before the seas picked up Monday. Fished one of the close-in reefs. Caught quite a few smaller red snapper and other undersized fish, including triggers and sea bass. Not many keepers this time. Ocean was calm and despite the lack of keepers it was a beautiful day on the water.” Capt. Drew Cavanaugh said “black drum have been great. The trout bite has been really good. Redfish have been great for sight fishing — the key is to watch other boats (for etiquette).”
MATANZAS INLET, RIVER: Capt. Chris Herrera reported black drum, redfish and spotted sea trout. “Concentrate on 2-6 foot water near flats.” Don Ayotte of Devil’s Elbow Fish Camp reported reds and sheepshead, along with whiting on the ocean.
ST. JOHNS RIVER: Capt. Bryn Rawlins of DeLand’s Highland Park Fish Camp said “bass fishing is good on wild shiners. Snook fishing and sperks have picked up.” Carerra Stefancik of Bull Creek Fish Camp said the winds have hurt fishing. “It’s hit or miss, biting on minnows.”