Spring has arrived in Central Florida. This signals our fishing opportunities transition from winter feeding habits to summer patterns.
On the lagoon flats April means the return of finger mullet and other bait species, and the return of top water plug fishing. The sea trout are abundant on the flats and running much larger than last year, and nothing is more exciting than a respectable sea trout’s explosive strike on a topwater plug. Although sea trout will strike a lure on top all day long, they feed more aggressively at first light and dusk, and the smaller plugs like the Rapala Skitterwalk has performed very well. April also signals the beginning of sea trout spawning season, so please handle and release the larger females with extreme care.
Redfish and Black Drum will be found schooling along the edges of shallow flats early, and then they’ll chase bait in skinny water as the day warms. Follow the mullet schools and use baits that mimic the fingerlings. Match the same size lure to the baits – typically on the smaller side this time of year.
Moving offshore, April signals the beginning of the fishing season for many of our blue water anglers, as it represents the start of the April/May northern migration of dolphin in deeper water, 120 feet and beyond and usually brings in some of the largest bulls taken all year. April also marks the beginning of the Easter kingfish run on the near-shore reefs outside Port Canaveral. Additionally, April marks the beginning of the nearshore beach fishing for large tarpon, jumbo jacks and kingfish, so break out the big rods and prepare for battle.