Spotted seatrout fishing with live pigfish is a summer tradition on Mosquito Lagoon, pigs are also good for many other inshore fish, including redfish, snapper, tarpon, jacks, and ladyfish. In the Lagoon, fish them free lined and tail hooked along drop offs, sloughs, over deeper grass areas, and grass flat edges. Popping the rod gives a tug on the pig, pulling him up out of the grass and getting him to oink thus attracting a fish to attack. In the Edgewater backcountry fish them along drop offs of any depth, for deeper drops free lined allows them to swim down the face of the under water cliff. Shallower drops, small sloughs, and oyster bars, are all good to try, in shallower spots a float can be added, which will keep the pig suspended above the bottom as they will always try to swim down towards the bottom. Bigger pigs as well as pinfish can be prime baits for bull redfish and tarpon, lip hooked for drifting the main ICW channel from Edgewater to Ponce Inlet for big reds, sight cast to surface rolling tarpon any where from offshore Ponce, into the inlet, the ICW channel, and through New Smyrna south into the backcountry.
TEACH KIDS ABOUT CONSERVING OUR MARINE RESOURCES, AND TO BE GOOD STEWARDS OF OUR WILDLIFE IN TO THE FUTURE.
First light until after sun up is top water lure time, nothing in inshore fishing is any better than the sight and sound of a top water strike, primarily a shallow water technique in the backcountry, walk the dog near oyster bars, shorelines, Edgewater backcountry black drum with Bobbi and Capt Michael Savedow top edge of drop offs, and grass flats in the south end. Traditional hard lures are the norm, but other options include chuggers, poppers, unweighted soft plastics, and the new DOA Airhead. In deeper locations, top waters are the most effective lures, any time of day for long casts to surface striking schools of jack crevalle and ladyfish which can be encountered roaming open water corralling finger mullet.
Snook season is closed June, July and August, so catch and release only on linesiders until the first day of open season starts again September 1.
The kids are out of school, the Indian and Halifax River is a great place to teach them the basics of fishing at their skill level, make it easy for them to catch a bunch of fish. For younger children, the best way for them to learn new fishing skills is to fish for the small abundant pan fish, such as mangrove snapper and sailors choice, aka pinfish, they will learn basic techniques to use in years to come to catch bigger and better fish. A small hook will catch loads of smaller fish, but also will catch a surprisingly large fish when a bigger one bites, so use a #4 or #6 hook, a light weight, and a small piece of peeled shrimp, fish in the right spot and the kids will catch fish one after another, they will learn to bait a hook, fight their fish, then safely unhook them, a quick photo of a few, and learn about catch and release. This is the best technique for them to learn good fishing skills and they will be better anglers in short order as they get older. For kids with a little more experience, teach them to freeline fish with live shrimp, or easy to use artificials like a leadhead jig with soft plastic tail and they will catch seatrout, ladyfish, jack crevalle, and more. Don’t make it complicated, keep it easy and fun. Teach them about conserving our marine resources, and to be good stewards of our wildlife in to the future.