By Captain Mike Tojdowski
October is finally here, and it couldn’t have come any sooner. With record heat reported this year, we can all finally have some relief. Summer is coming
to an end and the fall stellar fishing season is beginning. The fishing will begin to improve tremendously as the weather cools more and more toward the end of the month. Anglers will find it more enjoyable to be outside once again. We will without a doubt be increasing numbers of fish caught as well as also finding larger examples of fish on all our adventure fishing charters.
The favorable temperatures of October will begin to move the fish upwards in the water column. You’ll find them more and more with the mid to top water baits. With literally thousands of hours on the water, I have found that a major spawn of minnows this month will have the fresh and brackish water ways more active. Tarpon, largemouth bass, snook, peacock bass and clown knife fish will all be chomping throughout the day, bulking up again from the lean summer months.
You really want to focus on matching the hatch with your baits. Using lures that are silver in color with either a black line down the middle or a red dot on them. Yo- zuri Crystal 3D floating minnow series will do the trick along with their Hardcore series of bullet crank baits. Working these artificial lures along the weed line, drop offs or pilings is always recommended. Look for waters that range from 5-14 feet in depth for best result. I personally run Shimano 2500 class reels spooled with 15lb super braided line with 20lbs H.D. Fluorocarbon leader by Yo-zuri. This rig, I find, is abrasion resistant and almost impossible for the fish to see. It also helps to get more bites with longer casts, to reach fish further away from the boat.
Tip of the week: While casting and working baits near the boat it’s a good idea to troll a couple lines back far enough away from the immediate noise, at a distance of 20-30 yards. Either a live finger mullet or a golden shiner always seems to produce a nice surprise when you least expect it. Larger fish tend to be smarter in nature due to their experience and age, therefore, sometimes you won’t get a bite near the boat but as the boat moves away you might get that leery fish to strike. Sometime these same fish won’t hit an artificial bait no matter how well you work them. A live bait set back far enough will get you hooked up. Just set it and forget it. I also like to leave the drag set to mid-level and not over tightened since a larger fish will break you off with that first initial run, leaving you wondering what monster you just lost!