Monday, July 18, 2011

Matlacha Fishing Report: July Mixed Bag


Just about everything is available in Matlacha Pass right now.  Small snook, snapper, and rat reds are common under the mangroves and a baitwell full of live shrimp will get wiped out quickly.  The tarpon are still rolling right after sunrise and just before sunset and are quick to hit a dark colored fly as long as it's dropped right on their nose.   The best news as far as I'm concerned is the return of the big schools of jack crevalles into the pass.  These are one of my favorite light tackle species and they love clobbering topwater lures like the one pictured above.  When these jacks school up they're very easy to spot.  Their surface busts look a lot like mullet jumping from a distance but much more violent and they usually attract diving birds.  If you spot a flock of terns and gulls hitting the surface in Matlacha Pass right now, run to that spot quickly but shut down at least 100 feet from the action.  Jacks are incredibly aggressive but can also spook easily. If you get on top of them when they hitting the bait, a hookup is almost guaranteed.