Fort Pierce Inshore Fishing Report and Forecast: April 2017

Theresa Gilson with a sheepshead she caught from her dock in the Ft. Pierce Inlet. Photo credit: Capt. Joe Ward.

Look for a good snapper bite along the channel edges around the full moon. Try a live shrimp fished on a #2 hook and a half-ounce weight.  I like a 20-pound fluorocarbon leader and about 24-inches long.  Places like the North Bridge, Harbor Branch to the north and south of the South Bridge should produce some nice fish for a dinner.  As the water warms up the trout bite should be good at places like Bear Point, Round Island or the Midway Road area.  Live pilchards will be your best choice and free line them using a 4/0 or 5/0 Kahle hook and a 20- to 30-pound leader.  If it is redfish you seek, the flats and mangroves around Jack Island will be your best place and hard to beat. Try a live shrimp, small crab or a piece of cut ladyfish and fish it under a popping cork.  The snook fishing should also be red hot around the Fort Pierce Inlet and around the North Bridge when using live pilchards, pinfish or a select live shrimp. Fish these baits around the lighted docks at night or drifting the Fort Piece Inlet on the tide changes. The bottom fishing for black drum, sheepshead and croakers will be good for anglers using a live shrimp on a bottom rig, and fish around the area bridges or rock piles.  You could also get a few tripletail from the channel markers in the Intracoastal.  A live shrimp on a Troll-Rite hook is the way to go. Along the beaches the pompano bite should improve and the whiting and croaker bite will continue to be good. Try using a pompano rig with a sand flea or clam for the pompano and a piece of fresh dead or frozen shrimp for the whiting and croakers.

FORECAST BY: Capt. Joe Ward
Capt. Joe’s River Charters
(772) 201-5770 or (722) 461-1335

Karen Wongken caught this 18-inch sheepshead from the dock of the Dockside Inn using a live shrimp. Photo credit: Capt. Joe Ward.
Capt. Joe Ward has been fishing the inshore waters of Fort Pierce for over 50 years. He provides guided fishing charters on the Indian River Lagoon in Fort Pierce, Vero Beach, Jensen Beach, Port St. Lucie and Stuart, Florida. In his "spare time", Capt. Joe and his wife Cammie dedicate their time to running Capt. Joe's Bait & Tackle (located on the Fort Pierce Inlet at the Dockside Inn and Resort) and Treasure Coast Casters, a 501(c)(3) that teaches youth about fishing and the importance of marine conservation. To reach Capt. Joe, call (772) 201-5770 or visit his website.