Sailfish season this year has not been epic, but it has been OK. The sailfish population is not hurting in any way, itís just we have not had all the right conditions at the same time and it has been a very warm winter for South Florida. The right conditions being strong north current, blue water and a steady breeze (hopefully north wind). The same was the case last year, and just like last year, April is turning out to be one of the best months for sailfishing. Eventually the fish will push through the area and right now they are coming through in some pretty big packs. In three trips last week we caught 30 sailfish. That averages to 10 sailfish per day. Double digits are hard to come by some years and we had two trips where we caught 11 sailfish per day. On one of those trips we had a triple on and while we had the tripleheader we hooked another sailfish and now had a quad. That being said, I fired out another bait and wouldnít you know it, we now had 5 sailfish on at the same time and all with just 3 anglers. With a little bit of controlled chaos we managed to get releases on all 5 sailfish and didnít lose any from that bunch. Big congrats to that group of guys for getting it done! The sailfish action has continued into this week and we had one trip going 7 for 7 (perfect score) and a few other with at least 4 sailfish per day. I see the sailfish action continuing well into May as these fish start to migrate out of Florida.
With April upon us, we are now not just talking about sailfish, but a variety of species come into play. We have seen quite a few big kingfish as well as some mahis. For a while the cobia bite was really good, but that seems to have slowed down. We have caught quite a few mahis. The majority have been large schoolies but we did get some in the 20 to 25 pound range. The only fish missing this spring has been the blackfin tuna. Usually we start seeing the tunas by the beginning of April. The tuna bite is usually best in the late afternoon and I have had some late trips and have not seen them yet. Not to worry though, spring is their time and Iím sure they will show up soon.
With summer quickly approaching, now is the time to start planning your trips to the Bahamas. The Bahamas offers quite a variety of fishing opportunities, and we can cater the trips to your specific needs. For starters the full moon on May, June and July offer outstanding mutton snapper fishing. May, June and July also have terrific yellowfin tuna fishing in the ďchannelĒ. Throughout the entire summer bottom fishing is hot and you can also troll for blue marlin and mahis all summer long. If I get enough interest I plan on going to Andros again and fishing for the tunas along the Autec buoys. Big mahis and wahoo as well as blue marlin are also part of the plan for Andros. If you are interested in a trip to the islands this summer, give me a shout and we can look at dates and fishing opportunities.
Capt. Dean Panos