May turned out to be a great month and the fish really started to turn on. The bunkers have finally been showing up with better consistency. Just look where the fleet is in the morning and you cant miss them. This is the time of year to hit Walmart and get your blue, 6-foot cast nets restocked!
From the beach to reefs, tarpon, jack crevalle, bonita, spanish mackeral and kingfish have been hanging around 20 feet to about 40 feet. We have been having a lot of fun on light tackle with all these power hitting fish. Use live bunker hooked through the nostrils on 50lb fluorocarbon leader with an 8/0 circle hook. If you start getting cut off a lot, then time to put the wired stinger rigs on for those toothy kings. Keep a jig ready for the cobia for when you see or mark the bait out there, as this is the time of year they start to show up on the bait pods just off the beach.
The nearshore reefs, such as Pelican Flats and 8A, have been great for the early morning king bite. Use your stinger rigs and live bunker for the best catch. In the last few weeks, there has been wahoo, blackfin tuna, mahi mahi and a handful of cobia all caught on king rigs in the same area.
From the reefs to offshore has been good as well. There was a solid few days of great catches of mahi, and we should still see a few weeks of it. Many fish have been caught from 140- to 180-feet of water, and some days past 500 feet. It’s just a day-to-day thing and up to the winds and weather as usual. The basic ballyhoo rigs and skirts have been the key. The smaller skirts the better; pink seems to be the key.
Bottom fishing has also been awesome. Pinfish and croakers are a great bait for that. Fish the offshore reefs, such as 21 and 27, and if you fish any of the wrecks, you’ll be off to a good start, too.
Don’t forget about the amberjacks. They’ve been great and should continue to be so in the weeks ahead.
Good luck out there, and have a great June!
Capt. Chris Cameron
Fired Up Fishing Charters
Your premier fishing guide charter for shark fishing Cocoa Beach, offshore fishing Port Canaveral, and nearshore fishing Cape Canaveral.