Brevard Kayak Forecast – May 2014

Even with 365 days a year fishing on the Space Coast certain “seasons” are absolute magic! Spring stands out as one of the best with cool enough temps to have successful fishing throughout the entire day.

Many of the “finfish” baits like mullet, pinfish, mud minnows, glass minnow, pilchards, and many more flood the shallow lagoon waters. Redfish that are active all year become extremely aggressive as the influx of protein-rich bait induces a dietary switch from the crustaceans of winter. Soft plastic paddle tail lures like the Slayer Inc. SST will elicit hard hits, and this is a good time to get a redfish on topwater plugs.

Nothing is more amazing than seeing a large red come half out of the water attempting to get its under slung mouth around your surface plug. The appeal of your topwater plug won’t be lost on our large “gator” Sea trout. These most aggressive members of the local drum family are more than happy to smash a topwater plug.

This is the time of year that the largest mature trout are looking to heed the call of nature. It’s spawning time for the Space Coast’s Sea trout population! An activity timed for the moon (full/new) patterns that will group these fish in our calm shallow waters. As the sun sets these fish will slide into deeper water to do their deal! Best days to fish are several days prior and several days after, but leaving them to spawn for the accrual “days” of the moon event. I encourage to quickly photo and release any trout over 24inches; these are practically all females and full of roe. Low light topwater plugs, and the Slayer SST for all other times. Live baiting with mullet is also a very productive method of catching these fish.

With the warming near-shore water temperatures, bait is starting to fill the Atlantic beaches of our coast. Many predators will fill the coast to feast on the finned buffet. Our most common bait on Brevard’s beaches this time of year is the Atlantic menhaden (aka: Pogie).

Large schools can be found from just outside the breakers to miles offshore and resemble a dark cloud in the water. The pogie is a filter feeding fish so sabiki rigs won’t work; they must be netted or snag hooked. These “clouds” of bait are relatively easy to spot as birds and fish will be actively feeding on them.

One of the funniest and most exciting visitors to these bait pods are sharks of many different types. Varying in size from several feet to over ten and with names like sandbar, spinner, hammerhead, lemon, and bull they are virtually always ready to put on a show for my clients. This is heart stopping action that can be dangerous so great care is taken with an emphasis on safety. I tend to photo and release all the sharks caught and go for different fish if fresh fillets are wanted. This can be as simple as getting a large fish to cut for bait.

Ladyfish, jacks, bluefish, Spanish mackerel, bonita, and mullet will work well for this. Heavy conventional tackle will give you a chance to stop these powerful predators. I also enjoy using a medium conventional outfit for smaller fun sharks. Chumming is not needed, but cutting up some fresh bait from the schools you are focusing your fishing on won’t hurt.

My leader on both will consist of 8ft 60lb mono, attached by a swivel to 1ft of wire with your hook from 6-12/0 depending on bait size. The large rod gets huge bait, while the smaller rod gets small bait. This smaller rod will stay active with smaller sharks and even give you some fresh bluefish for bait. Be careful and go with a friend, or book a trip with me to try out kayak shark fishing.