North IRL Fishing Report: July 2014

Indian River Lagoon Redfish
Capt. Rick Banks col- lected this over-slot redfish while fishing with Capt. Mark Wright as they field tested the Banks Lures new artificial shrimp.

July’s heat came early this year with some days in the low 90 degree range during June’s first week. This translated into very warm waters in our region. Still, our waters in the North Indian River Lagoon remain, for the most part, clear.

I’m hopeful, though not confident; the brown algae blooms of the past few summers may have run its course. While I know the brown algae isn’t completely gone from our lagoon system I’ve only seen a few isolated pockets of the dirty smelly crud so far this season.

With warm water and air temps upon us we’ve been making the most of our days by starting very early. I’m making every attempt to launch before the sun breaks the horizon. Usually we have been casting a while before the actual sunrise.

Top-water plugs have been giving us good results on both redfish and seatrout provided we’re not hampered by too much floating grass, moss or other natural debris. Also, on very calm mornings when the water looks like a mirror the Fender Walker plugs by Banks Lures are achieving vicious strikes. Once heavy ripples forms on the water’s surface throwing a plug with a rattle is often a good idea and I like the Ghost Walker plugs by Sebile for this.

Another redfish from the IRL
Nikki Bull posing with his personal best redfish he caught recently while fishing with Capt. Mark Wright

As you might expect we’re doing quite well using weedless rigged soft plastics. Exude RT Slugs are catching both large trout and some redfish with the Exude Dart excelling on the “rat” reds and smaller end slot redfish. If you’re seeing smaller reds that are not responding well to your slugs/flukes try a Dart!
Live shrimp are one of my go to bait offerings in the winter season. However, it is now summer and the pinfish, etc. rip them apart as fast as you can toss them. My answer for this is to use a soft plastic shrimp.

While I love the casting qualities of Exude’s soft plastic shrimp do to its heavier than typical torso often plastic shrimp with a slimmer more natural profile will give better results. My friends at Banks Lures have recently designed just such a critter with a twist or two on the usual shrimp silhouette. I highly recommend you try these… SOON!