Indian River Lagoon Fishing Forecast – August 2023

For trout, redfish, and black drum go early in the morning.  Usually, we have west winds in the mornings and the water level is typically lower in the Indian River and Mosquito lagoon which makes the fish school up more.  The fish are outside of the flats usually where the grass meets the sand drop offs.  You want to look for the big mullet and you will find all three species.  Usually around mid day, the winds will clock around from the southeast, so that hour before is the best time to fish schools of redfish and black drum.  This also could be the hottest part of the day so stay well hydrated.  fishing big tarpon in Mosquito Lagoon and the Indian River is at it’s peak in August.  July was really good for the big tarpon.  Expect August to be very good also.  Calmer days for sight fishing doesn’t get any better.  Fly fishing can be just as good as in the Keys and bait fishing as well.  For the tarpon I use 20-30# braid with a 60# fluorocarbon leader.  Depending on the size of the bait, I use a 7/0 to 9/0 circle hook.  I usually use whatever I can catch in the river like mullet, pogies, pinfish, croakers, and even shrimp and sight cast.  When not sight casting, I get in an area where they are rolling and anchor up and put the largest dead bait on a 9/0 circle hook.  The reason for the largest bait is because the sail cats can be a nuisance.  Slow trolling works well also but the sail cats will eat you alive.  Sharks are prevalent in the lagoon and river so fishing around bait pods you can expect them to show even on the flats.  In June and July sharks were out of control when trying to land a fish in deep and shallow water.  Be prepared to lose a lot of bait and hooks.  Ocean fishing, the tarpon should be at its peak near the beaches.  Tarpon should be around the pogies and glass minnow pods.  I usually slow troll pogies or mullet in an area where they are rolling with the same tackle I use in the river and lagoon.  Croakers work very well but don’t troll them, let them drift  and pogies will work either way.  Typically, there are sharks and kingfish mixed in with the tarpon, expect to get cut off.  I never use a wire leader unless I am targeting the kingfish and sharks.  Most of this fishing is early in the morning till the wind changes form the southeast.  When you find tarpon in the glass minnow pods it can be frustrating to get one to bite because they are mainly eating the glass minnows.  The closer to the beach and in the surf you have a chance to catch snook, jacks, trout, sharks, and blue fish.  Be aware of the either and thunderstorms, storms can come up quickly and stay safe by getting off the water as soon as you see storms approaching.

Troy’s tip of the month: There can be good fishing after thunderstorms have passed in the evening.  In the early morning in the lagoon, bring you bug spray, the no-see-ums are brutal.