It’s hard to beat the month of April because the weather is perfect and the fishing can be better then expected. So many species of local fish are biting and the ones passing by are staying in our Nature Coast waters, making it hard for an angler to have a bad day on the water.
I’ll start with the big two: trout and redfish. Trout are low light feeders and, depending on the day’s conditions, they can be caught up shallow or out as far past the last markers. On an incoming tide inshore look for spotty bottom and use a glow jerk bait to get big trout around Ozello and south of Mason Creek. If conditions are calm, head offshore to a depth around 12’ and again look for the spotty bottom to catch keeper trout and some black sea bass. A 1/8th oz. jig head with a soft plastic that has some red flake in it is best. The retrieve is near the bottom and using a vertical twitch.
The redfish bite is best on the last hour of incoming tide on the western facing points. Live or fresh pinfish is the best bait.
Cobia have been consistent on the rocks and markers in the 10 to 15 foot range. This a fish that requires anglers to be prepared for the opportunity when it happens. I always carry a heavy spinning outfit with 30lb. Power Pro and have a spider hitch knot with 60lb. leader.
Sometimes you can get lucky with a simple eel shaped soft plastic but if the cobia is picky, a live pinfish will almost always get the bite.
The last shot at a bring home snook is this weekend! Some of the best places have been just off the keys in “green holes” or rocky points on the color change from yellow to dark indigo instead of along the mangroves in areas to our south. Look for incoming high tide mid afternoon this weekend.