Anglers, email your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org or post them at www.naplesnews.com/participate and we will compile your images into an online gallery that’s featured each Thursday morning here at www.naplesnews.com.
Pinch me! I think the air temperature hit 79 degrees today, and we are in the second half of January. If we can hold on to this nice weather for another four or five weeks, it will be time for spring already.
Even though we have had daytime temperatures to love, the water temperatures are somewhat cooler. Today, all the fish we caught were cold to the touch, and the surface temperature was reading 62 late in the afternoon.
Extreme low tides in the morning have made for some difficult fishing in the bays and backcountry. Even later in the day, the water levels are staying low and getting into your favorite fishing holes may be difficult or even impossible. Slow water movement and cool water makes things even more interesting.
Offshore, the red grouper are still providing good action and quite a few are being invited home for dinner, too. Amberjack are on the wrecks, and if you are lucky enough to be the first boat to get there the AJs will be accommodating. Closer in, catches of short grouper, lane and mangrove snapper are the norm.
Two announcements this week.
First, the Backwater Fly Fishers Club is offering a free workshop open to all interested anglers. You will get instruction on how to tie some basic salt water fly patterns and get a chance for castings instruction too. It will be held on Feb. 10 from 1 to 4 p.m. at Hodges University (located at I-75 and Immokalee Road). Call 239-598-6133 or email email@example.com to register.
Secondly, the Naples Fishing Club is moving the location of their meetings. As of Feb. 21, the club will meet at the Hamilton Yacht Club according to President Mike Flaherty.
Offshore: Capt. Al Coleman went out on Tuesday for a five-hour trip with the Krieder party of five. The "Lisa B" headed out Gordon's Pass and found some good bottom and lines went over the side.
Using cut sardines and squid the group kept busy with short grouper, and lane snapper. A "Bonita Encounter" was the highlight as the speedsters hit hard and took off for the horizon.
Monday, the "Findictive" headed out for a full day of offshore fishing with Capt. Mike Avinon at the helm. Six-foot seas didn't stop the fish from biting, though. After weeding out a bunch of shorts, Capt. Mike put 14 keepers into the box and they ranged up to 12 pounds. After all that it was amberjack time, and Mike was on a wreck and the amberjack were biting. The group boated six that went up to 50 pounds. Capt. Avinon said the water was cool and the water clear, despite the wind.
Ten Thousand Islands: Fishing has remained good down in the islands, according to Capt. Pete Rapp who fishes out of Everglades City. The trout bite is strong, especially during the last half of the incoming tide. Reds have been biting on both sides of the tide and will take a live shrimp.
Reds are running in the 18- to 25-inch range. Sheepshead are also being caught around the oyster bars. Morning tides have been super low, according to Pete.
Naples/Estero Bay: Capt. Steve Nagy says the sheepshead are feeding well around the docks and oyster bars in Estero. A lightly weighted shrimp on the bottom has been doing the trick for Steve. The fish are ranging from the little bait stealers to fish in the five-pound range.
Trout have been in the 17- to 22-inch range, and Steve has found them in the deep cuts early on the tide, and on the grass flats later in the day. He is using a shrimp and popping cork combo most of the time, but also uses a Hybrid Flurry on a 1/8-ounce jig under a cork as well.