7-19-08 fishing report by Captain Van Hubbard.

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My faith and hope has been rewarded with better fishing.<br />
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I sincerely believed we would have some good fishing, excuse me catching, when our weather finally straightened out and it’s time to Go Fishin’ now. Tarpon are still here and we enjoyed great action yesterday. Redfish, snook, and trout fishing is the best it’s been in years, maybe even decades. No signs of red tide for over a year and fish are rebounding better than ever from the bad years of “05 and 06”. Baitfish are at all time highs, minnows by the millions up and down our Gulf coast. Yes, the weather is unpredictable but fishing, that is catching, is more consistent than it’s been for a very long time. You will need to get lucky on the weather and stronger tides are usually more productive. One example contrary to this is the mangrove snapper fishery and it is best on slow current flows. The snapper are more abundant than ever too. Some Spanish are around but we have not had time to pursue em. <br />
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Oh yea, I’m sure we still have some permit off-shore but winds and great action inside have kept us inside. I had a good report of kingfish still on near shore reefs last week. Cobia should be available if you have some patience. I’m sure snapper fishing here is great. It’s challenging to choose between all the hot options. What a great position to be in again after several slow years; but I can guarantee you nothing last forever so make plans and do not wait too long.<br />
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We have found plenty of small minnows for bait; larger ones are tough to catch. Ballyhoo are every where and great baits. Plenty of pinfish but most are larger than I like. Snook are everywhere, most are 20 – 27 inches but some bigger ones and some big ones. We should have good catching this Fall. No big numbers but we usually get 10 – 20 per stop. Redfish are finally showing back up. Not big schools but 2 to 10 a spot and it should improve this time of the year. Most are nice slot fish and their color with the darker water is gorgeous. Specks are back and their size is up for us now too. We had one last week over 27 inches; yes that is a gator trout. We had several over twenty inches last Thursday in the rain. <br />
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Tarpon action finally turned on Friday we had two on and landed a nice fish about 150 on my charter. We found hundreds of fish but they were into teasing us. We searched around for other hungrier fish, founding none we decided to go back to the meat. Current flow had increased and fish were somewhat more co-operative. We got a hook up on a pinfish and young Eric had his hands full with a hundred pounds of explosive tarpon. It did manage to spit the circle hook after about ten minutes and a couple of jumps. 14 year old Eric was shaking after his experience. Grandfather, Bob hooked up and landed a big fish about 150 pounds on a crab to climax our trip perfectly. He even let his grandson work it after it was up to the leader twice. Their trophy refused to poise and broke the leader as I attempted to pull her to the surface for photos. They had great video and priceless family memories to cherish forever back home in Louisiana and Texas. <br />
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I went out with friends to see if the evening bite would turn on since the thunderstorms were gone. The fish had scattered out and bit much better, everyone caught a fish and we had more bites. It’s hard to guess how tarpon action will continue to be but we have plenty of fish. My best guess is we will have some more excellent fishing around the big tides. It could get hot in other near by areas any time. We are due more normal weather and that is again the key factor beyond my control. Storms are brewing down in the tropics do not procrastinate! Let’s Go Fishin’ soon. Captain Van Hubbard. <info@captvan.com><br />

Captain Van Hubbard

P.O. Box 146
Placida, FL 33946

941-468-4017

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