Indian River Lagoon Fishing Forecast – April


As we transition from spring into summer changing conditions equate to a larger diversity of species available. On the St Johns River, largemouth and sunshine bass action will be heating up. Look for schooling bass at first light feeding on threadfin shad from the Osteen Bridge to Lake Harney. A good way to locate these schooling fish is to look for white pelicans and other wading birds congregating along the shoreline. When in the feeding mode, these fish will take most swim plugs, and small live shiners.

Off the beach, look for the arrival of bait pods, Atlantic menhaden, and gamesters like large jack crevalle, tarpon and kingfish in close to the beach shadowing them. Also, there still should be some cobia in the mix, so always keep a rod rigged with a one ounce bucktail ready to cast at a moment’s notice.

Currently the water quality on the IRL is not at its best, but the clarity is improving in some areas. When fishing the lagoon flats in April, fish early morning and late evening with your favorite top water plugs for great trout and redfish action and use soft plastics and jigs in deeper water, 2 to 3 feet, mid-day. Remember, April is one of the months when sea trout are egg laden for the spawn, so it’s very important to handle and release the larger females with extreme care. Good luck and good fishing! Captain Tom Van Horn

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